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The Varsavsky Foundation
Avenida Bruselas 7, Planta 3
28100 Alcobendas
Madrid, Spain

The political blog of a social entrepreneur

Immigrant Party: It´s happening!

A year ago I blogged about the opportunity to create political parties made of immigrants joined by native citizens who felt that to them humanity was a stronger concept than nationalism. Well, it´s happening!

I am an entrepreneur, not a politician, but I guess that in politics, as in business, there are “empty niches” ready to be occupied and in that sense politics is like business. Immigration was one of them. To me leaving enormous masses of people without political participation while doing legal work for illegal pay was an unfairness that was bound to explode sooner or later. And it did. Citizens of the United States and Europe can´t continue seeing immigrants as people who take advantage of them when the reverse is mostly true. While it is the case that a few immigrants take advantage of the welfare systems of rich nations most contribute much more than what they take. As the May 1st walkout is proving, America would suffer very badly without the hispanic participation. And when all the other immigrants join in, Asians, Eastern Europeans, Africans, it will be time for mainstream political parties that something must be done to end the tremendous unfairness of people working every day who are treated as criminals. Spain declared a huge amnesty and increased its legal population by over 1% in a few months increasing its working pool and its tax base. That was a very good move. Personally I think that immigration should be open to all of those with working contracts but clearly with some tests. I would recommend a 3 year testing period during which immigrant status can be ended if the immigrant ends unemployed. But if a worker is able to sustain a job for 3 years they should be allowed to become permanent immigrants and in 2 more years nationals of the countries to which they immigrated. What Europe does, namely growing ever larger populations of citizens who can´t vote, is tremendously unfair, especially since in Europe even people who are born in a European country and live their all their lives are considered permanent immigrants. This is not sustainable nor fair. The current status quo is too unfair and what immigrants want is reasonable…and most will get it. The ultimate remedy to the immigrant problem however, will not be immigration but investment in education, political reform, family planning, and businesses in the countries that are exporters of people. Some immigration is positive, massive flight of economic refugees is not.

Posted on May 2, 2006