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Warning to America: What We Can Learn From Scandinavia About Low Skilled Migrants

We recently visited Norway and Sweden to understand more about the European migrant crisis. What we saw provides important lessons for the American immigration debate. 

More than 1.5 million people have relocated to Europe over the last two years. Many are refugees from Syria, Iraq and other war-torn lands. Many are simply economic migrants leaving poorer nations. This mass migration has strained European societies and upended European politics with populist insurgencies. 

European MigrantsThough economically and demographically similar, Norway and Sweden have adopted sharply different approaches to the policy and politics of immigration, and have reaped sharply differing outcomes. 

Starting in 2015, Norway adopted an immigration policy it has termed “strict but fair.” The Norwegians agreed to accept 8,000 migrants from other European nations, though they weren’t obligated to do so. 

Norway also established measures to stop uncontrolled migration. It imposed new border controls featuring a border fence, increased waiting periods for residency and deportation of ineligible migrants. It also reduced migrant benefits to match those offered by its neighbors. Norway even advertised in foreign nations, warning that migrants who do not face war or persecution will be deported. 

The result? Asylum applications in Norway fell 95% between the last quarter of 2015 and the first quarter of 2016. 

Norway is far from hardhearted. It has welcomed refugees for decades and its foreign policy prioritizes conflict resolution and humanitarian relief. But Norwegians understand that an open-border policy would strain their resources, disrupt the integration of other recently arrived immigrants, and undercut the legitimate desire of Norwegians to preserve their nation’s culture and character. 

Also significant: Norway’s political system has effectively accommodated a broad spectrum of views on immigration.  

Contrast this with Sweden’s approach. Sweden threw open its doors in 2013, offering Syrian refugees permanent residency. Sweden has since received more than 280,000 migrants, and counting. These migrants are disproportionately poor, young, male, undereducated, conservatively Muslim and possess virtually no Swedish-language skills. 

This radical policy occurred with little debate because political correctness pervades Sweden. They even have a term for the phenomenon: åsiktskorridor, or “the opinion corridor.” Any questions about the economic, fiscal and cultural impact of an immediate influx of migrants clearly lay outside the corridor; asking them could result in accusations of xenophobia or racism. 

Sweden now commits more than 7% of its 2016 budget to migrant services, with costs set to steadily increase. No one knows where the new money will come from, where many of the recent migrants will live or work, or what the ultimate social impact will be. 

Sweden’s failures have been repeated in Germany, France, Austria and elsewhere. Immigration was the key issue driving British votes to leave the European Union 

The parallels to the U.S. immigration debate are clear. For years, a bipartisan elite consensus has favored the mass immigration of unskilled and low-skilled workers into America coupled with the legalization of millions of illegal immigrants already here. Only one thing has stopped these elites from their desired immigration policy: Two-thirds to three-quarters of Americans consistently oppose any increase in immigration. 

Norwegian leaders responded to similar concerns and their country is safe and stable. Swedish leaders didn’t and their country faces economic, social, and political upheaval. There is a lesson here for American elites.

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Unlearned lesson

Norwegian leaders put their citizens first, Sweden did not. But the US elites are unfortunately not interested in protecting their citizens. It is up to the citizens of the US to make sure the government, the elites, and the invaders get the message that this is not going to happen in the US. Much like the English, we are bringing this NWO agenda to a screeching halt. We do not take orders from the UN. Just BO does that and his administration but NOT the People of this country.