When Rulers Are Contemptuous of the Populace

Chancellor Angela Merkel admits that Germany and the entire continent is being ravaged by terrorism.

She described recent attacks in Ansbach, Wurzburg and Munich as “horrifying and depressing” but insisted Germany would not turn its back on people fleeing the Middle East.

That’s right. Merkel is going to allow the migrant flood into Germany to continue.

“However, she also hinted that Germany would act in the future to limit the numbers that were arriving at its borders.” When a politician hints, some say, take it with a pinch of salt.

Merkel did what she did — and will continue to do what she does — without consulting the populace.

Her loyalty is not to her fellow citizens, but to fellow members of the global elite.

Ordinary Germans, who weren’t consulted in advance, are now dealing with the consequences: Increased crime, political divisions, a wave of rapes and sexual assaults by migrants (which the authorities covered up for political reasons) and numerous other downsides that Merkel and her associates won’t have to deal with.

As columnist Peggy Noonan writes in the Wall Street Journal:

But there was a fundamental problem with the decision that you can see rippling now throughout the West. Ms. Merkel had put the entire burden of a huge cultural change not on herself and those like her but on regular people who live closer to the edge, who do not have the resources to meet the burden, who have no particular protection or money or connections. Ms. Merkel, her cabinet and government, the media and cultural apparatus that lauded her decision were not in the least affected by it and likely never would be.

Nothing in their lives will get worse. The challenge of integrating different cultures, negotiating daily tensions, dealing with crime and extremism and fearfulness on the street — that was put on those with comparatively little, whom I’ve called the unprotected. They were left to struggle, not gradually and over the years but suddenly and in an air of ongoing crisis that shows no signs of ending — because nobody cares about them enough to stop it.

The powerful show no particular sign of worrying about any of this. When the working and middle class pushed back in shocked indignation, the people on top called them “xenophobic,” “narrow-minded,” “racist.” The detached, who made the decisions and bore none of the costs, got to be called “humanist,” “compassionate,” and “hero of human rights.”

Germany is one such example, but it isn’t alone. The United States is heading in the same direction. “Syrian refugees are being placed in the poorest communities — not the rich suburbs in northern Virginia or Maryland where the powerful people who run the government live, but in communities already facing problems that they’re barely dealing with.”

Merkel is falling in the polls, as Germans realize what she’s done to them. And around the world we see the rise of Trump-like populist campaigns, appealing to citizens who feel that their rulers despise them.  As Noonan concludes, “From what I’ve seen of those in power throughout business and politics now, the people of your country are not your countrymen, they’re aliens whose bizarre emotions you must attempt occasionally to anticipate and manage.”

If the rulers feel neither loyalty nor empathy toward the ruled, the ruled can be expected to return the favor. The results, unless the rulers change their ways in a hurry, are unlikely to be pretty.