How Demographics Impact Politics
Given a recent exchange I had regarding the last election in The Netherlands, I thought it worth illustrating the point about the significance of demographics a little more precisely. In terms of looking at the monarchy alone and nothing else, some demographic changes have not been bad for the cause of monarchy. However, the nature of these examples does not bode well for the future of traditional authority in western civilization if one considers the basic facts on display and not simply isolated situations. There are a couple of cases I can think of immediately that make the point quite well and may be more relatable to most readers than that of the Kingdom of The Netherlands in which case the worry is about the way things are going rather than the way they are. The two specific cases that first jump to mind are those of Northern Ireland in the United Kingdom and the province of Quebec in the Dominion of Canada. The situation in these two places make the case quite clearly about how important demographic changes can be. In both, certain changes happened to benefited the monarchist cause but they nonetheless make the point that birthrate and immigration have political consequences.
Today, Catholics are less likely to favor unification than in the past, though most still hope for it eventually. When one considers how many fewer children Catholic Irish families have today, compared to decades past, one can easily see that if the Irish Catholics had carried on having families as large as they once did, the six counties would today be part of the Republic of Ireland and it would have taken no military campaign or terrorist attacks in order to bring it about. It would have happened peacefully, by the democratic process, simply because the Catholic population would have overtaken the Protestants to become the new majority in Northern Ireland. So, as far as the six countries of Ulster are concerned, the monarchy was saved because Catholics started using birth control and their rate of reproduction drastically decreased. Of course, by that same measure, if Protestant, loyalist Britons had moved in sufficient numbers into the Republic of Ireland, they might have brought the whole island back into the United Kingdom with no other weapon but the ballot box. If it works for once side, it can also work for the other. The change in the Irish Catholic birthrate has meant that the Queen still reigns in Northern Ireland. Birth rates matter.
The next premier of Quebec, Lucien Bouchard, who also favored secession, caused similar outrage by stating rather gloomily just before the referendum that the decline of the French-Canadian birthrate could harm their cause. “We’re one of the white races that has the fewest children”, he said and, indeed, French-Canadian women have just about the lowest birth rate of any White women anywhere. In other words, if French-Canadian women had still been having as many children as they had been even in the 1950’s or if the non-French ethnic minorities were not so numerous, the secessionists would have won and Quebec would today be an independent republic. Mr. Bouchard also, years later and more carefully, warned again about the declining numbers of the French-Canadian population. So, again, birth rates matter and immigration matters, these things have very real political consequences. They are not, however, of equal significance because while birth rates can always be changes, demographics cannot. Once one population is replaced by another, it cannot be brought back. No one likes to deport people these days and, even if they did, once a population gains sufficient numbers they will not allow themselves to be deported.
In the monarchies of western Europe (as in the United States), racial minorities tend to vote for the most left-wing of the major parties (far left fringe parties tend to be limited to well-to-do Whites). For the first time in European history, an election was determined by a non-European minority group. This happened in France with the election of the socialist President Francois Hollande. Minorities tend to vote as a bloc and this was certainly the case in France in which 93% of the African and Arab Muslim population voted for Hollande while only 7% voted for his opponent Sarkozy. This amounted to 1.7 million votes and in an election that was decided by 1.1 million votes, that means that the non-French population determined who the leader of France would be.
This is a pattern that holds true in most every monarchy in Europe with a sizable non-native minority population. In the United Kingdom, minorities have overwhelmingly voted for the Labour Party which has certainly been the least friendly of the two major parties to the monarchy (and witness what they did to the House of Lords). In the Kingdom of Belgium, a quarter of the population of Brussels in now African or Arab and in a country in which the traditional unifying factors have been the King and Catholicism, the capital city is already more Islamic than Catholic. In the Kingdom of Spain, the Socialist Party tried to pass a law allowing the half a million Moroccans in the country to vote in Spanish elections. The effort failed and it is probably not a coincidence that in the following 2011 elections the socialists were ousted from power. It should go without saying that the socialists in Spain would not be doing this if they expected the Moroccans to vote for anyone but themselves. This party formed part of the government of the Second Spanish Republic, was banned by the Franco regime and while today more friendly toward the monarchy (so long as the royals do as they’re told), their youth wing is still openly republican and a party congress did declare support for what they termed “civic republicanism”. Given that, where they stand seems clear enough.