petej + refugees   659

'A dizzying maze': how the UK immigration system is geared to reject | UK news | The Guardian
We like to tell ourselves a very particular version of the UK’s past – one in which we have held the door open to people fleeing conflict and persecution, and welcomed others from all over the world. Whenever the brutal realities of this country’s asylum system make newspaper headlines, the Home Office response almost always includes some variation of “The UK has a proud history of granting asylum to those who need it.” But while there are tales of a warm reception for some, and people have made a life for themselves in this country, there are at least as many – if not more – stories of doors slammed shut in people’s faces and faceless walls of bureaucracy confronting those who arrive. This has been the case for decades.
UK  immigration  asylum  legal  legalAid  costs  bureaucracy  poverty  hostileEnvironment  cuts  housing  outsourcing  G4S  Serco  detention  deportation  complexity  migration  migrants  refugees  dctagged  dc:creator=GoodfellowMaya 
17 days ago by petej
The Best of a Bad Situation | Issue 33 | n+1
The immediate switch to sustainable energy on a global scale also addresses one of the intellectual stumbling blocks that has bedeviled even well-intentioned climate-change policy makers: what to do about so-called developing societies. Unlike the ascetic cap-and-trade system, we aren’t required by this switch to turn to Indian or Chinese middle classes and say, “we deny you the quality of life that we enjoyed.” We should have never enjoyed it in the way we did — that was well understood, then as now, if for different reasons. The extraction-based political economy that buoys a specific stratum of India, Brazil, Iran, the Arabian Peninsula states, and China is objectionable on nearly every level; there’s no “global justice” legitimacy to the idea that past resource exploitation by Western powers entitles the elites of postcolonial developing countries to squander the future of their own citizens and the rest of the planet. Wholesale disaster under the banner of postcolonial nationalism will not feel better than under the banner of revanchist white nationalism.

Does this sound madly utopian? If so, it’s because the fossil-fuel industry — and that term, industry, must now include governments like Russia’s and our own — has been successful at obscuring how close we are to being able to switch over to renewable energy. The relevant technologies of solar, wind, hydro, and even nuclear power all exist. Architects and green industrial designers know how to make structures that aren’t just energy efficient but even net-energy positive. Under political conditions other than our current ones, we’d have great reason for optimism.

But unlike with other utopian programs, no one seems to see the promise. “Decouple now” and “Renewable or bust” don’t seem likely to harness the diverse interest groups currently opposed to Trump and the Republican Party. Most of us prefer to remain in the dark when it comes to energy. It’s still far easier to imagine the end of the world than the end of carbon-based capitalism. But what other choice do we have, America? Let’s get right down to the job — nearsighted, psychopathic, queer, angelic, diabolical, whatever we are, harness that most renewable of resources, human will, and put our shoulders to the wheel.
climateChange  politics  globalWarming  inequality  refugees  migration  USA  ObamaBarack  TrumpDonald  coal  Paris  COP21  emissions  fossilFuels  socialDarwinism  authoritarianism  racism  fear  catastrophe  KolbertElizabeth  writing  energy  renewables  sustainability 
20 days ago by petej
How liberalism became ‘the god that failed’ in eastern Europe | World news | The Guardian
The extent of post-1989 emigration from eastern and central Europe, awakening fears of national disappearance, helps explain the deeply hostile reaction across the region to the refugee crisis of 2015-16, even though very few refugees have relocated to the countries of the region. We might even hypothesise that anti-immigration politics in a region essentially without immigrants is an example of what some psychologists call displacement – a defence mechanism by which, in this case, minds unconsciously blot out a wholly unacceptable threat and replace it with one still serious but conceivably easier to manage. Hysteria about non-existent immigrants about to overrun the country represents the substitution of an illusory danger (immigration) for the real danger (depopulation and demographic collapse) that cannot speak its name.
communism  capitalism  liberalism  liberalDemocracy  Europe  Hungary  Poland  inequality  xenophobia  populism  finance  crisis  resentment  nationalism  nativism  Fidesz  LawAndJusticeParty  AfD  imitation  emigration  travel  refugees  population  individualism  cosmopolitanism  OrbanViktor  KaczynskiJaroslaw  politics 
25 days ago by petej
Brexit and Europe from the perspective of a citizen of nowhere | Richard Seymour on Patreon
A brisker way to put this is that capital can't be a citizen of nowhere, because it is loyal to what exists. The name for ‘nowhere’ used to be utopia, literally a non-place. To be a citizen of nowhere is to be a utopian, to have loyalties to a country that doesn't yet exist. And it may be the only space from which the apparent choice between Europeanism and racist nationalism is apprehensible as a double-bind.
Europe  identity  mythology  history  migration  borders  Frontex  refugees  Mediterranean  Turkey  Brexit  Leave  Islamophobia  UK  politics  territory  capitalism  dctagged  dc:creator=SeymourRichard 
february 2019 by petej
Trump’s Asylum Proclamation and the False Distinction Between “Migrant” and “Refugee” | The New Yorker
This story of undeservedness rests on the distinction between refugees and migrants; the latter word has come into particularly wide usage since the so-called caravan became a feature of Trump’s campaigning in advance of the midterm elections. The people coming to the border from Latin America are fleeing gang violence and extreme poverty. Under existing U.S. asylum rules, neither circumstance would entitle them to asylum protection, though the Obama Administration recognized the fear of gang violence as grounds for asylum. But the distinction between the two words is a legal fiction: it asserts that economic hardship is somehow separate from political disenfranchisement and political persecution. Implicit in this claim is the view that economic inequality across nations is somehow natural, and therefore the citizens of wealthier nations have no responsibility to shelter those who are fleeing poverty elsewhere. The distinction between political and economic migrants is relatively new, dating to the second half of the twentieth century. But now that climate change is displacing tens of millions of people, its immorality comes into ever greater relief.
USA  immigration  asylum  refugees  migrants  Mexico  borders  dctagged  dc:creator=GessenMasha 
november 2018 by petej
The American civil war didn't end. And Trump is a Confederate president | Rebecca Solnit | Opinion | The Guardian
You don’t have to be oppressed or come from a history of oppression to stand with the oppressed; you just have to have a definition of “we” that includes people of various points of origin and language and religious belief and sexual orientation and gender identity.


I do know that so much of what makes this country miserable is imagined poverty, the sense that there is not enough for all of us, that we need to become grabbers and hoarders and slammers of doors and ad hoc border patrols. Wars are fought over resources, and this is a fight over redistribution of resources and who decides about that distribution. We are a vast land, a country of unequaled affluence – albeit with obscene problems of distribution – a country that has always been diverse, and one that has periodically affirmed ideas of equality and universal rights that we could actually someday live up to fully. That seems to be the only real alternative to endless civil war, for all of us.
USA  politics  TrumpDonald  whiteSupremacism  Confederacy  race  privilege  guns  immigration  refugees  fear  resentment  AmericanCivilWar  pluralism  diversity  inclusion  dctagged  dc:creator=SolnitRebecca 
november 2018 by petej
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