As we all know from the German media and from German politicians, the German Social Model with its many collectivist features is infinitely superior to the American capitalist system, which is based on profit orientation, selfishness, exploitation of the poor, etc., etc., etc.... Also frequently mentioned by representatives of Germany Inc. is the sad fate of American minorities, such as immigrants and "Neger", who suffer from century old racial prejudices of the ruling white Anglo-Saxon class. (No such thing happening in Germany, of course....)
Hmm... lately, there have been a few exception to the law of German superiority, such as sky-rocketing unemployment, lackluster economic growth, an ailing health system, a pay-as-you-go pension system that seems to be degenerating into oblivion faster than you can say "declining birth rates in Germany".
And then there is the immigration issue. The last ten years have seen an almost enthusiastic approval for increased immigration to Germany by the Left and the Liberal FDP "because we need immigration". The basic idea behind the "immigration now" approach (my expression) is the desire to have young immigrants pay for the pensions and health costs of Germany's increasingly aging population.
But there is unwelcome news from the Muslim front...
Letter from the teachers at the Ruetli Elementary School in Berlin to their state regulators:
...The composition of our student body has changed in recent years such that the highest proportion of students is now those with Arabic migrant backgrounds. It currently runs 34.9%, followed by 26.1% for those with Turkish migrant backgrounds. The overall portion of young people of non-German heritage amounts to 83.2%. The statistic shows that the proportion of pupils in our schools with Arabic migrant backgrounds has continually increased in recent years. (...)
We must say that the mood in some classes is currently characterized by aggressiveness, disrespect, and ignorance with regard to us adults. Necessary instructional material is brought to school by only a few pupils. The willingness to vandalize property is growing: doors are kicked in, waste paper baskets are abused as footballs, firecrackers are set off and picture frames are ripped from the hallway walls. (...)
In many classes the attitude during instruction is marked by a total rejection of the subject matter and by degrading demeanor. The teaching staff are totally unprotected; objects are thrown directly at them from the class, instructions are ignored. (...)
So far we haven’t gotten any support from the parents in our efforts to enforce norms and rules. Meeting dates are not kept, phone calls fail because of inadequate language comprehension. We’re at wit’s end, (...)
In most families, our pupils are the only ones who get up in the morning. How are we supposed to explain to them that it’s nevertheless important to be in school and to strive for graduation? (emphasis added) (Translation by Richard Bartholomew)
In other news:
The failure to integrate Muslim minorities in Europe constitutes a security risk for the US, the US state department’s undersecretary for European affairs Daniel Fried told a US senate committee.
Mr Fried said unemployment, discrimination and lack of integration among Europe’s Muslim communities had created an "audience" open to extremist messages, according to Reuters. (emphasis added)
Germany's cherished Social Model indeed has not achieved much in terms of integration of Muslim minorities (or other foreign minorities). Germany's top politician's names are as German as Sauerkraut and Knackwurst: Merkel, Platzeck, Westerwelle, Roth, Stoiber, Schmidt, Schäuble, Jung, Steinmeier, Seehofer, Beck, Rüttgers, Koch, Gerhardt, etc., etc. Business careers for immigrants are still the exception. University enrollment for students "with immigration background" runs way behind the immigrant's share for the "under 30" segment of the population.
For immigrants in all of Europe, there is no equivalent to the "American dream". As Leon de Winter in February 2006 wrote in WELT: "People who decide to go to the U.S. have chosen their dream - they want to become Americans. (...) In Europe, personal incentives for immigrants are vague and abstract" (our translation).
The issue of immigration - especially of people with a Muslim background - will turn into a nightmare for Europe.
(More on the Berlin school story...)