God Defend New Zealand is New Zealand’s national anthem.
(Here’s a couple of fun facts. It’s not New Zealand’s only official national anthem and it’s only been an official national anthem at all since 1977.
With the permission of Queen Elizabeth II, it was gazetted as the country’s second national anthem on 21 November 1977, on equal standing with “God Save the Queen”.
Here’s another couple of fun facts. New Zealand also has two official languages. English isn’t one of them.)
God defend New Zealand. But defend what specifically?
Hear our voices, we entreat,
God defend our free land
It’s our freedom that we ask God to defend. And from what?
From dissension, envy, hate,
And corruption guard our state
From dishonour and from shame,
Guard our country’s spotless name
Phil Goff and the Auckland Council, at the behest of Hazim Arafeh of FIANZ, got their scheduled event shut down. The alt-left then succeeded in getting their event shut down a second time. Their stated grounds for doing so were literally to defend New Zealand from “dissension, envy, hate”.
As for the alt-right, what do they want to defend New Zealand from? Muslims. That’s a fair summary of the core message of the two visiting Canadian speakers. They are immigration alarmists. We don’t need them here, if only because we already have our own homegrown immigration alarmists, such as John Ansell and VJM Publishing. The latter succinctly explains how mass immigration leads to the loss of freedom.
Please note that I do not mean to use the term ‘alarmist’ in any pejorative or presumptive sense. Dictionaries define an alarmist as, e.g.
a person who tends to raise alarms, especially without sufficient reason, as by exaggerating dangers or prophesying calamities.
so it might seem dismissive of me to call someone an alarmist, when I might instead have referred to them as a prophet, oracle, harbinger, herald, futurist, forecaster, or risk analyst. But I do so for two reasons. I want to draw a parallel between immigration alarmism and climate change alarmism. And I want to emphasise the fact that sometimes today’s alarmist is tomorrow’s voice we wish we’d listened to.
Both climate change alarmists and immigration alarmists make predictions. That they do so makes their claims scientific, which is fortunate. Alarmists must make testable predictions if they are to be taken at all seriously. So how do the predictions of immigration alarmists and climate change alarmists pan out?
Not well in the case of the climate change alarmists. Al Gore’s doom-mongering is especially notorious!
But let’s be fair. Al Gore and his cronies—most of the climate alarmists mentioned here—are politicians, and failed predictions from politicians are no more remarkable than broken election promises. Really, we should look at scientific predictions from actual climate scientists. But there’s a problem.
It’s pretty clear that scientists aren’t any good yet at making global climate forecasts. Current temperatures are at or below the low range of all of the climate models. Nobody predicted the recent 17-year-long temperature plateau. And while they can come up with ad hoc explanations after the fact for why the data don’t match their models, the whole point of a forecast is to be able to get the right answer before the data comes in.
Given the abysmal record of climate forecasting, we should tell the warmists to go back and make a new set of predictions, then come back to us in 20 or 30 years and tell us how these predictions panned out. Then we’ll talk.
The couple of paragraphs above are excerpted from Robert Tracinski’s article What It Would Take to Prove Global Warming. But, of course, there’s a response to Robert Tracinski’s article. This points to another problem. While the experts (and self-proclaimed experts) themselves are arguing back and forth, it is hard for anyone else to get a handle on where the truth lies.
But at least there’s this.
No scientist that I know of claims that CO2 causes ‘runaway’ warming.
That’s a relief. We don’t have to worry about catastrophic anthropogenic global warming. Or do we?
Now let’s turn to the predictions of the immigration alarmists. Is mass Muslim immigration going to cause widespread chaos, crime, social disruption, and loss of freedoms in host nation states? The immigration alarmist’s affirmative hand waving response, “Look at Europe,” is too non-specific. We need to drill down to some detailed predictions, so let’s have a look at Islam in Sweden.
In 1930, there were 15 Muslims in Sweden.
A 2017 Pew Research report documents Muslim population at 8.1% of the total population of Sweden of 10 million (approximately 810,000).
Immigration alarmists might predict an increasing crime rate. Donald Trump, for example, insisted during his March 2017 visit to Sweden that immigration had created a spike in crime.
But data from the National Council for Crime Prevention for 2017 does not substantiate this – the rise in violent crime has been minimal – there were 113 murders last year , 106 in 2016 and 112 in 2015.
In fact, while the number of cases in 2017 marks the highest level of confirmed cases of lethal violence in a decade or more, the rate of 1.12 homicides per 100,000 inhabitants trails NZ’s homicide rate by a good margin. Nonetheless, it’s undeniable that Sweden is in a bit of a mess.
Immigration alarmists might predict gains for the “far-right” nationalist Sweden Democrats party in next month’s general election. This is a better bet. It’s probably safe to say that the balances that resulted in the Brexit yes vote in the UK and the election of Donald Trump as president in the US were tipped by voters’ immigration concerns. And last night’s wave of arsons in Swedish cities will surely only serve to fan the flames of rising nationalist sentiment. Now is the time for immigration alarmists to make somewhat specific predictions. Let’s wait and see what happens.
Meanwhile, from the safe vantage point of New Zealand, far from Europe and several metres above sea level, I remain somewhat skeptical of the claims of both climate change alarmists and immigration alarmists.
As we have seen, both climate change alarmists and immigration alarmists make dire predictions. As dire as catastrophic anthropogenic global warming in the case of the climate change alarmists. Methane release from melting permafrost could trigger dangerous global warming. The latest IPCC report states that “a ‘runaway greenhouse effect’—analogous to Venus—appears to have virtually no chance of being induced by anthropogenic activities”—which is good news—nonetheless, global warming of up to 20°C is conceivable, which would make most of the planet uninhabitable. But this worst-case scenario is highly unlikely.
In the case of the immigration alarmists, the worst-case scenario is a global Islamic caliphate. But how likely is that? More likely than you might think.
Nick Bostrom is the world’s leading existential risk analyst. His paper on existential risks rates nuclear war, biowar, and artificial intelligence (AI) as risks worth worrying about. Although climate change and a global Islamic caliphate (under the heading totalitarian world government) both rate a mention.