The commentators 02-09-15
Passport-free travel within Europe is a luxury. The Schengen visa granted to many non-EU visitors, the ease of shifting unremarked from one country to another, encourages refugees to pick and choose where they want to stay. The result is chokepoints in any place that is seen as a gateway to prosperity; Schengen helps convert those fleeing war into job-seekers
- Roger Boyes, The Times
Like the euro currency, the Schengen zone has failed its first test. Both were fair-weather schemes; both are being shredded in the high winds of political crisis. Just as the credit crunch pitilessly exposed the weakness of Europe’s monetary union, condemning millions across the Mediterranean to poverty and emigration, so the surge in migration from Africa and the Middle East is wrecking the concept of a border-free EU. The timing, for British Europhiles, could scarcely be worse
- Daniel Hannan, Daily Mail
The eurozone, as predicted when the single currency was established, will have to become a much more tightly integrated unit. A country, perhaps in name, more probably in all but name. Delaying this can only result in increasing tension and crisis, damaging all European countries, including the UK. The negotiations on which Britain is engaged are not — or at least should not be — just about this country. They are about reshaping an EU that is in profound crisis because its rules cannot cope with the tasks it has set itself
- Daniel Finkelstein, The Times
Before we have a date for the EU referendum the question to be asked is changed. Until now voters were going to decide on a yes or no question as to whether Britain should remain a member of the European Union. Now, after an intervention from the Electoral Commission, voters will be asked whether the UK should remain a member of the EU or leave it. There will be no chance for a positive yes to be connected with continuing membership. The change is small but significant, and ominous for those of us who want the UK to stay in the EU
- Steve Richards, The Guardian
Europe can and should do better when it comes to accepting Arab and African refugees. Not just for moral reasons but for selfish ones too. Europe is facing an ageing and shrinking labour force. Future generations will have to shoulder an increasing amount of debt, which will be spread across less people. Immigrants, including asylum-seekers, are typically young and eager to work. So they can help ease this problem by caring for the elderly and shouldering a share of debt they had no role in tunning up. People who cross desserts and stormy seas to get to Europe are unlikely to be slackers when they arrive. A more open Europe with more flexible labour markets coud turn the refugee crisis into an opportunity, just as America did with successive waves of refugees in the 20th Century. Let them in and let them earn
- The Economist
What would have happened had the shootings taken place not in America, but in Norwich? What if the victims had been a local TV crew known to two or three hundred thousand people? Would our London-based newspaper executives have thought "We've never heard of them, so we'll use lots of gory pictures" or "They're British. We'll show some restraint"?
What if the victims had been a Newsnight reporter and cameraman, people we were used to seeing in our living rooms, people known all over the country?
Would the photographic coverage have been muted - in deference to our familiarity and their families - or even more excessive?
Editor's blog: Murder on camera
Comment archive, 2015
Virginia TV shootings
Boris Johnson, Greece
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