How Canada Got Immigration Wrong: A Reply to Jonathan Tepperman
Dreaming about Canada’s Multicultural Model
Jonathan Tepperman, opines in an article in Wall Street Journal, How Canada Got Immigration Right (September 2016), that Trump and the US generally “could learn” from how Canada has been able to produce the happiest population in the world by importing more than a quarter million immigrants every year since the early 1980s. Canadians are so happy, he claims, that they want to keep this level of immigration for an indefinite future, if not increase it — a wish the current liberal government has granted by promising to increase immigration rates to 337,000 a year by 2018.
Apparently, White Canadians in particular are enthralled by the fact that “more than 20% of Canada’s inhabitants are now foreign-born — almost twice the proportion of residents of Sweden, Germany or the U.S.” They cannot wait till the day when most Canadians will no longer be White, Anglo and Quebecois, but a land occupied mainly by Asians, Muslims, and Africans.
Tepperman happily informs us that idealism has not been the only motivation behind this longing for a harmonious multicoloured future in which the “racist past” of White Canadians will be no more. Canadians have shown themselves to be a most “pragmatic” people in coming to terms with the “necessity” of finding new sources of immigrant labour once sources began to dry up in Europe in the 1950s. Not long ago they were a xenophobic people preferring European migrants but their pragmatic inclinations prevailed under the leadership of liberal politicians who devised a highly impressive system of immigrant selection based on a points system wherein applicants for residency were selected on their educational, linguistic and labour skills and their overall suitability in meeting Canada’s economic needs.
Moreover the multiculturalism Trudeau and subsequent governments devised, with every political party on board, involved a two way street in which immigrants were allowed to retain those elements of their culture that would contribute to Canada’s pluralism while encouraging them to integrate to a common modern liberal society.
Picking most immigrants based on their ability to make material contributions began paying dividends that benefited everyone. Indeed, the system has produced one of the most successful immigrant populations in the world. According to the OECD, Canadian immigrants are better educated than any other country’s foreign-born population (53% of them enter Canada with college degrees, compared with 39% in the U.S.). Their employment rate is among the highest in the developed world, and without them, Canada’s workforce would be shrinking and aging.
Tepperman concludes that Canada’s immigration experience has been “spectacular — a record for politicians everywhere to emulate.”
What the Polls Really Say
But this model is hardly spectacular. Canadians are increasingly showing signs of discontent with the immigration numbers and other related issues. Tepperman is wrong in stating point blank that “polls have shown that two-thirds of them feel that immigration is one of Canada’s key strengths, and the same proportion favors keeping it at its current level — or even increasing it.”
Even if we were to accept polls as the only measurement of Canadian wishes (which they are not since one of the key aspects of this model is that Canadians are not allowed to question it lest they are willing to live with the label “racist”) there is polling out there showing that Canadians would eagerly welcome significant aspects of Trump’s immigration proposals relevant to the Canadian context:
- In this poll, as reported in September 10, 2016, they seem to agree with Trump that we should screen immigrants for anti-Canadian values: “Two-thirds of Canadians want prospective immigrants to be screened for ‘anti-Canadian’.” This preference for immigrants who are more inclined to accept Canadian values holds across the political spectrum: “Conservative supporters with 87 per cent backing the idea and just 8 per cent opposed compared to 57 per cent support among Liberals and 59 per cent for New Democrat voters.”
- Canadians also seem to agree with Trump’s concern about opening our borders to Syrian refugees. According to a new poll from the Angus Reid Institute: “More than 70 per cent of Canadians don’t support the federal government taking in more than 25,000 Syrian refugees, according to a new poll…Two in five respondents think Canada should stop taking in Syrian refugees immediately.”
- They also seem to agree with Trump that legal immigration should be cut in the future: In a survey conducted in 2013: “When asked whether ‘less immigration’ or ‘more immigration’ would lead ‘to a better future 25 years from now,’ 61.7 per cent of Canadians said less immigration would be preferable, compared to 34.4 per cent who said more immigration would result in a better Canada.”
The Soft Totalitarianism of the Canadian Model of Multiculturalism
A major flaw in discussions about the merits and demerits of Canada’s model of multiculturalism is the naive supposition that this model is all about tolerance and openness. It is not. It cannot be stated any other way: NO DISSENT IS ALLOWED IN CANADA AGAINST THIS MODEL OF IMMIGRANT MULTICULTURALISM.
The entire society has been structured to make this model work, all the educational and government institutions, media and businesses, are dedicated to making it successful. Therefore, almost all the reports, studies, dissertations, books, and articles produced about this model are biased in their determination to make the system work, show that it is working, and that it can be improved. Whenever problems are identified, they are about the lack of implementation of multiculturalism, obstacles to the integration of immigrants due to “racist attitudes,” “discrimination by White employers” or lack of resources to support newcomers. While some of these difficulties are identified as “problems” in the model, the preferred disposition is to framed them as “challenges” that can be overcome with further advancement of the model.
It is also the case that the method of polling about this model is flawed and does not give a true picture of the actual feelings of many Canadians for the simple reason that Eurocanadians have been brainwashed from the moment they are born to think of multiculturalism as Canada’s identity. They have been compelled to think they must accept immigration, and that if they don’t it is because of “xenophobic fears among Whites.” While positive feelings by immigrants towards multiculti Canada are deemed to be evidence of successful integration, negative feelings by members of the host culture are deemed to be “xenophobic” and thus automatically disqualified as evidence that can be used to show that immigration is not working.
The evidence that counts is of those Canadians who have “progressively” come to accept a multicultural Canada. Citizens with a strong sense of European identity are automatically categorized as “intolerant” and consequently ostracised.
Tepperman notes that a majority of Canadians in the 1960s, 67 percent, opposed any increase in immigration. Yet it does not occur to him to ask why then was mass immigration imposed upon this population? The fact is that even supporters of this policy agree that immigrant multiculturalism has proceeded for the most part by way of non-transparent regulations, executive directives, and administrative discretion rather than by legislative action and popular demand.
The Economic Evidence
Keep in mind that almost 100 percent of the academics in Canada are committed to research intended to the success of this model, “improving” it but never challenging its basic assumptions. Our side has hardly any academics with the means or with the proper political atmosphere to conduct research which focuses on the flaws of the model, and less so on the flaws of the ideology guiding it.
On the surface, looking at data from Citizenship and Immigration Canada, it would seem that, since the mid-90s, that the points system has been a success, in that economic immigrants have constituted around 60 percent of the total, whereas family-class immigrants have constituted around a third of the intake, and refugee inflows about 10-15 percent. It would appear that Canada’s immigration policy has been relatively successful in bringing “quality” immigrants.
But included in the “economic class” are also the spouses and children of the principal economic applicants. For example, it was estimated that in 2005 only 39% of the immigrants classified under the “economic class” were principal applicants selected according to their language skills, level of education, and work experience. As a percentage of all the immigrants granted permanent residency in 2005, only 19.5% were directly selected on the basis of their skills and education.
Moreover, the so-called “highly trained immigrants” have come primarily from countries with educational systems and training standards that are either unfamiliar or lower than Canadian standards. Many have arrived with weak skills in English and/or French, and have not exhibited the credentials, education, and work experience required in high-level Canadian jobs. A survey carried out in 2003 by The International Adult Literacy and Skills Survey on some 18,000 individuals (of whom 3,700 were immigrants) showed that the cognitive skill distribution of immigrants was much lower on average than that of Canadian born individuals. Immigrants from countries in Africa, Asia, Caribbean, and Latin America obtained lower scores on cognitive skills and tests.
Immigrants have not found jobs as quickly as anticipated. Labor market studies in 2006-07, for example, indicate that immigrants who had arrived in the previous five years were less likely to be actively employed, and that higher percentages were unemployed compared to Canadian born workers.
The anticipation that average Canadians would benefit from mass immigration, with a higher proportion being “economic” immigrants, has proven false. It is well-established that Canadian workers’ purchasing power remained flat from 1980 to 2005. According to Statistics, Canada’s analysis of the 2006 census, the median earnings of Canadians (in inflation-adjusted 2005 dollars) have increased by 0.1% since 1980. Not only that, but the earnings of the poorest fifth fell dramatically in that time, by 20.6%, while the top 20% of earners saw their incomes rise by 16.4%.
There is no such thing as a labor shortage in Canada. There is an unwillingness to work for undercut wages due to cheap immigrant labor and imported contract labor. Canadian workers are proud of their political and economic gains against the harsh working conditions of the past, serfdom, peonage, or coolie labor. They do not wish to see an importation of these low-wage, anti-working class values, from the non-Western world just to keep the profits of global corporations high.
One has to consider as well the many elderly relatives of immigrants who use social services without ever having paid for those services during their working lives. Many immigrants hold Canadian citizenship but work abroad, paying no taxes in Canada, and only returning to Canada to use expensive government services. About 11 percent of immigrants have citizenship in Canada and one other country. It has been estimated that 8 percent of Canadian citizens, including those with dual citizenship, or 2.7 million people, live outside Canada.
Economist Herb Grubel of Simon Fraser University, and a Fraser Institute fellow, calculated, among other things, that the costs in services and benefits, in the year 2002 alone, incurred by the 2.5 million immigrants who arrived between 1990 and 2002 exceeded the taxes they paid by $18.3 billion. He also found out that the average immigrant since 1985 has imposed an annual fiscal burden on Canadian taxpayers of $6000, for a total of $25-billion annually for all immigrants. For the fiscal year 2005/06, he calculated that the “fiscal burden on Canadian taxpayers was over $6,000 per capita” “because of the low average incomes of recent immigrants, the low taxes they pay and the government services they absorb.” More recently, he calculated that the total fiscal burden “has risen from $16 to $24 billion in 2005, to $20 to $28 billion in 2010, to $27 to $35 billion in 2014.”
I must add I have always been perplexed by the celebration of a model predicated on a system designed to entice the most educated individuals from the poorer nations where they are in higher need. This is known as “braindrain,” which is a form of imperialism, which goes to show how immoral and hypocritical the Canadian “humane” model of mass immigration really is; on the one hand, calling upon Canadians to cherish other cultures, while, on the other, promoting policies that weaken the economic well-being of these cultures.
Integration Versus Ethnic Enclaves
|Sikhs integrated into Canada
On the question of integration: on the surface, it appear that immigrants are integrating into Canada insofar as only a very small number of them have engaged in terrorist activities, or illiberal practices posing an immediate threat to our liberal values. Immigrants are acquiring citizenship, learning one of the official languages, getting involved in Canadian politics, with some intermarrying outside their ethnic group, getting jobs, and participating in Canada’s educational institutions.
But these facts do not say much; they merely show that the majority of immigrants are integrating into a Canada that is officially defined as a multicultural place committed to mass immigration, and in which the traditional Anglo culture is no longer accepted as the official culture and in which Eurocanadians must accept their reduction to a minority and be forced to compete with skilled workers from the rest of the world as well as with students for university positions.
As it is, the evidence offered by proponents in these matters is flimsy and intrinsically subjective, based solely on the answers immigrants have offered in surveys created by proponents of immigrant multiculturalism. They say there is little evidence of “entrenched racial concentration in poor ghettos,” yet studies do show that Chinese migrants “tend to settle in established Chinese neighbourhoods.” In Richmond, BC, where six out of ten residents are new immigrants, and where half do not speak English in their homes, Chinese-language signs, unaccompanied by English, can be seen everywhere, with multiple incidents of Canadians protesting about the lack of visible English signs.
A comprehensive study of 17 ethnic groups in 12 Canadian cities by Eric Fong and Rima Wilkes (2003) offers reasons for, but does not deny, residential segregation among different ethnic groups in Canada. In February of 2012, the National Post contained an article, As Immigration Booms, Ethnic Enclaves Swell and Segregate, with the following finding:
In 1981, Canada had only six neighbourhoods with ethnic enclaves…Now, that number has mushroomed to more than 260.
Another study which looks into the future, published by Citizenship and Immigration Canada in July 2012, A New Residential Order? The Social Geography of Visible Minority and Religious Groups in Montreal, Toronto, and Vancouver in 2031, predicts that
…in Toronto and Vancouver, the degree of separation between Whites and Visible Minorities is projected to rise considerably, beginning to approach that in the average US city in 2010 between Whites and African Americans.While in Montreal the visible minority population is predicted to be spread out across “neighbourhoods of all types” (including ones mixed with Whites), it is anticipated that in 2031 “about nine out of ten Whites will live in White-dominated areas.”
Destruction of Canada’s Historic Identity
Ultimately the biggest problem with the Canadian model is that that projections are pointing to a future Canada in which “Caucasians” will be increasingly displaced by people who are “non-white in colour” — the terms Statistic Canada uses. This fact is never seen as an issue by the mainstream political parties and the media. Instead, Eurocanadians who lament their dwindling numbers are categorically denounced as “White supremacists,” while “non-Caucasians in race” who call for a majority Asian Canada are celebrated as vibrant and liberal-minded — regardless of their otherwise intolerant customs, hyper-patriarchal dispositions, and unwillingness to marry outside their race. So, even if many are “aware” that they will become a minority, they are prohibited from discussing this issue unless they wish to be labelled “racist.”
The entire multicultural system in Canada, the policies, hiring practices, grants, media announcements, education, is set up for the advancement of “diversity” and for the benefit of non-European immigrants, which means that many Eurocanadians also stand to benefit as advocates and employees of diversity, since the system offers many economic incentives, jobs within a massive bureaucracy dedicated to the integration of immigrants and the diversification of Canada’s entire society. Diversity ideologues go around parading as upholders of the highest moral principles in human history as they sell-out their heritage, celebrate the culture of foreigners, distort the history of Canada, living easily thanks to the hard labour of past Eurocanadians nation builders. But patriotic Canadians are unsettled by this fake morality, and do wonder whether a model that envisions their reduction to a minority, and that requires them to put down their own heritage, and that even requires them to downplay their foundational role in the creation of Canada, in the name of a fabricated history that would have this nation created by “diverse races,” is as “spectacular” as its supporters claimed it to be.