Anticipation lies at the foundation of the human being's entire cognitive activity.

The next wave of refugees

The next wave of refugees will be 3 to 4 million, not


The next wave of refugees will be 3 to 4 million, not 350,000. After that, 10 million (and growing). Desperation is a powerful driving force; survival leads to extreme behavior. President Obama issued an Executive Order focused on Behavioral Science in the context in which the subject is of more relevance than what the Order states. A 3-year-old Kurdish child—victim of the conflict between the Turks and the Kurds—washed ashore from a capsized refugee boat. This triggered sympathy for those escaping the war in Syria, conflicts in Iraq, Afghanistan, and Libya, or the misery in Africa. Misplaced compassion is the greatest cruelty—the wise men of old noticed. But we refuse to understand what this means. Syria lost its future as half of the population was forced to flee. The best of Asia, Africa, and South America are becoming the future of the USA while the destiny of their home countries, of their own people, becomes questionable.

Germany won the Third World War without firing one shot. It “owns” Europe and needs to replace its own productive population in order to keep its export engine going. Even with 800,000 refugees—not at all easy to integrate—its population will continue to decline. As the second largest exporter of weapons, Germany is fully aligned with the USA—the biggest exporter of military equipment—Great Britain, and France in maintaining the wars of the world going. That nobody is prepared to connect the dots between wars and massive migration is easy to explain. We are not willing to give up prosperity! Donating to support those in misery makes you feel good, but the thought that those millions involved in the war economy might get a smaller piece of the pie does not seem to be an option.

When the number of refugees and migrants will reach into the millions, they will overrun those standing in their way. It will be too late to recognize that the Western countries set a fire in the world that no one will be able to contain. Will the Executive Order pertaining to behavior and its consequences—a typical example of anticipation at work—inform a new course of action based on a politics of responsibility? Or is it only another form of make-work regardless of how meaningful or meaningless it is?

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