There’s little chance to stop Finland from becoming an ever-growing class society or that its suspicion of immigrants and visible minorities will lessen anytime soon. Our greater intolerance of other groups won’t only be fueled by our prejudice and loathing, but by Finland’s “other” that will be more than happy to oblige.
Some immigrants and visible minorities will gladly accept the societal pecking order of things just like some minorities in other countries have.
The key, however, is not to become a Finnish Uncle Tom (Tuomo-setä) but to build on who you are. Learn your history, be proud of who you are. If you become too white, you’ll be trapped, possibly for generations, and become part of Finland’s underclass indefinitely.
Finland’s Romany minority, who have lived in this country for 500 years and number 10,000, are a stark reminder of what happens to a group that refuses to become white. A great part of their history is marred by outright social exclusion and discrimination of the worse kind.
Juhana Vartianen and Jarkko Kiander spoke of the need of bringing more immigrant labor to Finland. Read full story here.
Our ignorance and lack of resolve to tackle intolerance will eventually cost our society dearly. They will be hard blows to Nordic values such as social equality, justified and encouraged by our collective and individual greed. We opportunistically believe that by allowing intolerance, and the exploitation of immigrants and visible minorities, will allow us to eat and have our Nordic social welfare cake too.
It’s all self-deception and a tricky sales job by those who are keen to streamline people’s rights by lowering salaries, cutting social services and trimming rights.
In a news story published by YLE about Juhana Vartiainen, an economist who wants to shake Finland off its social welfare foundations, gave his usual recipe on how to use our workforce more effectively.
Apart from the usual make-work-more-attractive-option-than-unemployment benefits, raising the retirement age and shorter study periods at universities, he spoke of the govenment’s plan to bring 200,000 immigrants to Finland by 2019 to plug our labor shortage.
The most interesting part of the story, however, were quotes by pension insurance group Ilmarinen CFO Jarkko Kiander concerning the role of these new immigrants.
Apart from admitting that menial work could be conveniently handed to immigrants and visible minorities, he estimated that some 100,000 immigrants could be employed in these low-paying jobs that white Finns don’t want to do.
When asked about immigrants getting paid lower salaries than white Finns, he responds: ”This is the one of the economic logics behind immigration, that immigrants are cheap labor and keep salaries in check.”
In one sentence Kiander sheds light on not only what he thinks about immigrants and their integration as equals in Finland, but his contempt for them as well as for Finland’s working class. His only aim is profit for Finnish industry. Immigrants offer a wonderful weapon for him to strike a hard blow to organized labor.
People like Kiander have learned well the lessons of intolerance and how it can be used effectively for profit. Too many countries in the world exploit cheap labor in order to fatten the wallets of their owners and to attain a competitive edge over other rival companies and countries.
One matter that he hasn’t foreseen, however, is that people have the ability to organize and fight back.
As Finland permits, like it does now, the social exclusion and exploitation of immigrants in some cases with the blessings of the unions, we’ll end up shooting ourselves in the leg.
But this is what Ilmarinen’s CFO as well as many other large business leaders aim to do. Who cares about our social welfare society as long as they get their fat paychecks at the end of the month and juicy annual bonuses.