MT202: Syston Osmosis --
Why People Migrate and Move

[Matrix Thinking, article MT202]

David Noel
Ben Franklin Centre for Theoretical Research
PO Box 27, Subiaco, WA 6008, Australia.

Explicit knowledge, conventionally delivered like pizza (neat boxes with toppings of concepts, theories, best practices and war stories), is consumed by the brain but not metabolized into action. The learning we call intuition, know-how and common sense gets into the blood stream through osmosis. It is shaped by social context. --Richard Pascale.
Quotation MT202-Q1

What is Osmosis?
Osmosis. Where you come across the word most frequently these days, is in references to Reverse Osmosis. This is the basis of the method used to produce fresh water from sea water (desalination).

In Reverse Osmosis, a liquid container has two parts separated by a membrane. Pressure is applied to the part of the container holding a liquid which contains impurities or dissolved salts or chemicals.

Figure MT202-F1. Reverse Osmosis. From [1].

With desalination, a membrane is chosen which has holes large enough to pass water molecules, but not large enough to pass salt molecules. The pressure on the salty water squeezes just the water molecules through.

Membranes can be made which have precise pore sizes. Water molecules are about 1 A in diameter, while common salt molecules are 7 A across (where A stands for Angstrom, a ten-thousandth of a micron). Figure F2 shows sizes (in microns) of some molecules, viruses, and bacteria (a micron is a millionth of a metre).

Figure MT202-F2. Pore sizes in a Membrane. From [4].

Manufactured membranes can be made so that they pass molecules up to a given size -- for example, they might pass water and sodium chloride (salt) molecules, but not calcium carbonate molecules (these larger molecules are what make water "hard").

Osmosis in plants
Those with memories of school botany classes may recall that Osmosis is important in how plants function. This is straight osmosis, not reverse, and is the basis of how plants draw in water from their roots.

Figure MT202-F3. Osmosis at a plant root cell. From [3].

In the case of plants, roots accumulate sugar molecules, drawn down from the leaves where they are formed. The liquid in the root cell has a sugar-load, which creates a sort of suction which can pull water in from outside the root, as long as the sugar concentration is higher within the root cell than outside it. The cell wall is the Membrane in this case. Plant cell walls do have minute pores in them, which can let water molecules pass, but not the much larger sugar molecules.

It's all part of how plants move sugar-loaded water (sap) up and down between roots and leaves. The roots pull water in to their sugar-loaded cells, with what's called Osmotic Pressure, and push the sap up towards the leaves. This is just one factor -- water evaporating from the leaves also sucks sap up from below.

Figure MT202-F4. Movement of water in a plant. From [2].

The physical laws governing osmosis and osmotic pressures have been worked out long ago, they are not complex. Illustration F5 shows the main laws, on the website referenced [5] you can put in your own figures to calculate a given position.

Incidentally, although plants are obviously living things, the action of osmosis depends purely on physical factors -- it operates just the same with inorganic materials. An example is the movement of fuel up the wick of a spirit lamp.

Figure MT202-F5. Calculations for osmotic pressure. From [5].

Figure F5 has a little picture which gives an intuitive feel for what's happening -- you can see the side with the higher concentration of sugar tries to suck in water from the low-concentration side, until concentrations are equal on both sides.

What is this to do with movement of people?
The thing is, the osmosis situation is quite a good model for the movement of people and organizations from one location to another. People in less well-off countries often wish to migrate to richer countries. Companies may wish to move their head office to a country with more favourable tax laws.

Within a country, people in remoter parts are attracted to move to larger towns, and then to big cities. This is common all over the world, the percentage of a country's population living in cities is everywhere on the increase. "Depopulation of the Countryside" is a very live concern.

Those interested in this topic may like to look at MT115: Stop The World, I Want To Change Seats . In the section headed "Small Towns in Nebraska", is mentioned a report in which economist Bruce Johnson worked out a technique called "pull factor analysis". This analyzed changes in retail sales levels with town population sizes, and demonstrated how towns smaller than 20,000 people consistently lost population and retail trade levels, and the smaller the town, the greater the loss.

Such trends may be concerning, but they are not surprising. The "Magnet of the City", the "Depopulation of the Countryside", these are common features of modern life all over the world. In MT terms, they are normal reflections of the tendency of infocap to aggregate and build up infocap focussing and breeding nodes.

In this article, we are concerned with such things as why people migrate from one country to another, and why organizations may move to a different jurisdiction. These movements can be generalized as the effect of Infocap contents on shift of Systons. There are brief summaries of the concepts of Infocap and Systons in MT201: Matrix Economics, and links there to deeper explanations of the terms.

MT201 also has some visual representations of Infocap, represented as a green liquid, able to flow and exert pressure on its containers. Let's look now at such a representation which also includes systons.

Figure MT202-F6. Tanks containing Infocap with different degrees of sugar-loading, before inter-flow has occurred.

Figure F6 shows two tanks containing infocap, joined by a Membrane Chamber. The Membrane Chamber is shown as a separate entity, because it is useful to consider the link between the tanks as a working unit, rather than as just a gate.

The left-hand tank contains low-sugar (weaker) infocap, this includes small systons not large enough to be visible in the liquid, and six large systons (the red-flanged wheels). The Membrane Chamber contains the Membrane, shown as a yellow zigzag partition dividing the chamber.

The membrane is assumed to be selectively permeable; it will allow small systons with certain characteristics to pass through, but not large or fixed systons. The right-hand tank contains high-sugar (stronger) infocap. Within this are 12 large systons.

Figure F6 shows the initial situation, before Osmotic Pressure and the Membrane are allowed into play. Figure F7 shows the final situation, after Osmotic Pressure (due to the differing strengths of the Infocap in the left- and right-hand tanks) has been allowed to act completely.

In the final stage, the strength of the Infocap (its sugar-load) has averaged out and reached the same in both tanks. Small systons have passed through the membrane, and there are now twice as many of these in the right-hand tank as in the left. There may also be twice as much total infocap in the right-hand tank.

Figure MT202-F7. The tanks after Syston Osmosis has pulled Infocap and small Systons into the part which had higher sugar-loading.

A migration model
Let's look at the Tank Model as a treatment of people migrating from one country to another. On the left is a poorer country, such as Kenya, where the population enjoys only a moderate level of services and wealth. On the right is a more advanced country, such as Australia, with a good standard of living.

This is only an example, the fact that one country may be better off than another today may change in the future. In the model, many more Kenyans will want to migrate to Australia, to live permanently, than do Australians want to migrate to and live in Kenya.

To do this, the Kenyans will have to pass through the Membrane Chamber. For them, the nature of the Membrane is all-important. It may be set up to pass only fit people of good character within a certain age range. In practice it may involve a Visa system which seeks to control migrant behaviour for a period after entry to Australia.

The membrane chamber may show up as part of the transfer system between the two countries. At the departure terminal in Kenya, airline staff may require to see the appropriate visa in the traveller's passport. At the arrival terminal in Australia, the traveller will need to show an acceptable visa for entry, and may need to clear things brought with them through quarantine.

And the answer is "Yis"
Let's look at another case, with two countries differing only a little in infocap strengths -- New Zealand and Australia. We'll use rather more evocative outlines to represent the two countries.

Figure MT202-F8. Syston Osmosis for New Zealand and Australia.

This example is of interest because New Zealanders and Australians have few restrictions about moving between the two countries -- the Osmosis Membrane between them is thin and porous. Citizens of no other country have the same freedom of working in Australia.

In fact, migration of "Kiwis" (the vernacular for New Zealanders) to Western Australia has little more difficulty than migration of Queenslanders to WA. Its extent will rise and fall with transient economic trends -- in 2016, WA is in process of recovering from a collapse in the "Mining Boom", which had benefitted WA far more than it had other Australian States. On the other hand, Kiwis are regarded as having good skills in agricultural work, and may be attracted to WA to improve farm outputs.

Currently the difference in Infocap strength (in sugar-load) is such that overall migration is still in the direction out of NZ and into Australia.

Putting figures on Infocap strength
The parallel between movement of water through a cell membrane into a sugar-loaded situation is probably close enough that formulas similar to those shown in Figure F5 will apply to the migration of people between countries. It certainly seems worthwhile to try and develop some quantitative formulas to explain movements, in place of the qualitative expressions which, till now, have been all we have had available to use.

Of course, the situation with population migrations, or any movement of infocap and systons, is undoubtedly much more complex than simple water osmosis. And existing osmosis theory has little to help with the complexities of membrane variations. But even identifying the need for quantitative treatments is an advance on the status quo.

It should be possible and helpful to develop quantitative formulas to delineate the pressures applied to people to migrate.
Proposition MT202-P1.

Formulas to delineate movement of people within countries should also be useful -- such as the treatment to delineate movement of populations between Nebraska towns mentioned above.

People are only one type of syston involved in such movements. Movements of companies into a different country, perhaps for taxation advantages or as a spearhead for expansion into new markets, are another type.

Even whole countries can move. Sixty years ago, Hawaii and Alaska were not States of the USA, they did not join till 1959. Hawaii had previously been a kingdom, then a republic. Singapore was once part of Malaysia, it left the federation in 1965. Syria and Egypt were once parts of the United Arab Republic.

Proposition P1 may be generalized to cover all movements of infocap and systons from one area to another.

It should be possible and helpful to develop quantitative formulas to delineate the forces involved in movement of infocap and systons between different situations.
Proposition MT202-P2.

Proxies for Infocap strength
There is no standard formula at present for calculating the Infocap strength -- the sugar-load -- of a country. But we can move closer to this by using "proxies" -- things which appear to move in conjunction with infocap. A proxy from another area is the use of tree rings as indicators of the rainfall and temperature levels of earlier years.

The most obvious proxy for a country's infocap is its pcGDP, its per capita gross domestic product. The value of what a country produces each year can be measured fairly well, its pcGDP is this value divided by the number of inhabitants.

Figure F9 following is a graph of pcGDP for a range of countries, taken from [7]. There is little argument against the assumption that high-pcGDP countries also have high infocap. However, their pcGDP makes up only part of their infocap, and for a good picture of the total thing, we need to take into account a lot of non-money components, which can vary from country to country.

Figure MT202-F9. Per-capita GDP as a proxy for infocap strength. From [7].

The first-rank countries, shown in yellow on the figure, include the USA, Canada, Australia, and Norway, all of which have a high standard of living. Also included are the smaller countries of Ireland, Holland, Switzerland, and Austria.

Reference [7] also has a table of countries' pcGDP by ranking. First on the list is the Gulf state of Qatar ($102,100), followed by Liechtenstein (89,400). Then No. 3 is Macao, the former Portuguese colony, now a Special Administrative Area of China (88,700).

Next, at No. 4, is Monaco (85,500), then Luxembourg (77,900), with Singapore No. 6 at $62,400. From these examples it is clear that pcGDP loses its value as an infocap proxy for smaller entities -- nominally countries, but really just selected parts of wider economies. If the area immediately around Beijing was made into its own country, that country would also appear pcGDP-rich, at a level far above that of China as a whole.

A rather better indicator of infocap levels and osmosis pressures is given by migration figures. Figure F10 below gives Euromonitor International's estimates [8] of migration rates globally in 2030.

Figure MT202-F10. Migration rates as a proxy for infocap strength. From [8].

The only two large first-rank countries here are Australia and Canada. It is reckoned that both will have net migration rates above 5 per 1000 (0.5 %) annually in 2030. These are countries which currently take in very significant numbers of migrants, they can be reckoned to have high infocap levels, leading to high migration osmosis pressures.

The highest migration rate forecast is for Singapore, with 9 immigrants per 1000 existing population, close to 1% per year. Singapore is notable both for its high infocap content, and for the fact that this content has been built up over some decades of continual investment and education, from a base almost devoid of natural resources.

What's in the mix?
A very important constituent of infocap content for a country is the diversity of its inhabitants.

Historians will tell you that all the great civilizations of the past emerged after the merging of lots of ethnically-diverse groups. In the past, this was often through war and conquest, with warriors and armies sweeping into an area, scattering their Y-chromosomes about in the process.

Rome was ethnically diverse well before its initial expansion. As it built up its empire, with traders, food, materials, and artifacts in continual movement throughout its area, there was continual genetic mixing and overlay. Army units in Britain were drawn from distant parts of the empire. People had free movement to travel and trade within the empire.

In the Middle Ages, the "Mongol Hordes" thundered in as far as Vienna, while the Arabs gained control of northern Africa and quite large parts of Spain. The Jews experienced their diaspora into far-flung parts of Europe and northern Africa.

Over several thousand years, the British Isles were subject to invasion after invasion, with Picts and Britons displaced by Vikings, Angles, Saxons, and Normans. In later times, movements were more peaceful, with Huguenot weavers and Dutch drainage experts coming in. Britain's "Industrial Revolution" not only drew country folk in to the towns, it also pulled in many Irish and people from outside its small island.

After World War 2, immigrants from the former Empire countries flooded into England, especially from the West Indies, India, and Pakistan. With the creation of the European Common Market (later the European Union), and its freedom of movement of people, many Polish moved to work in Britain.

Figure MT202-F11. Percentages of foreign-born residents. From [10].

Figure F11 shows percentages of foreign-born residents in different countries. Being foreign-born implies relatively recent immigration, within human lifetimes, and the patterns shown are not unexpected, and do reflect population diversity. However, the patterns do not necessarily reflect the accumulated diversity from earlier migration, such as that in Britain.

My estimates of the infocap strength of some countries
For a country, its pcGNP, its attraction to migrants, and its genetic diversity, are all contributors to its infocap strength. Other contributions come its infrastructure stock and its knowledge resources -- things like national libraries. Yet other contributions come from the way all these things interact and are linked.

Figure MT202-F12. Some estimated Infocap Unit (sugar-load) values (IUs), 2016.

Figure F12 is my estimate of the current infocap strengths of sample countries, measured in IUs (Infocap Units). This estimate is admittedly subjective, but I have tried to take into account all the factors listed above.

The current leader is England, with an infocap strength today set at 100 IUs. There are other countries with higher pcGDPs, higher migration rates, and more extensive fixed infrastructure, but England probably has the best combination. It could well be argued that the list should say Britain, rather than England.

There is more detail on migration in MT115: Stop The World, I Want To Change Seats -- Synergy and Infocap Measuring.

Look to the Membranes -- practical migration hurdles
The nature and strength of a migration Osmosis Membrane can alter dramatically. Fifty years ago, in migration terms, if you lived in Britain and wanted to move to Australia, you could just arrange your travel and go. And the reverse was true -- Australians could move to Britain and live there as "British Subjects", even put up for and hold a seat in the UK Parliament.

In 2016 all this has changed, the Australia-Britain switch is nowadays subject to a mess of visas, permits, and conditions. In total contrast, as part of the European Union, Britons can move freely around in, work in, and buy property in, all the countries of the EU. Back in the late 1940s, an English person wanting even to go on a fortnight's holiday in France had a limit of 50 pounds on the amount of money they could take to spend there.

There is a lot more about such migration moves in MT110: Pushing Off From Pommyland -- Syston Budding and Merger .

The problem and promise of refugees
In recent times, what is perceived as one of the greatest disturbances to national order is that generated by refugees. People fleeing wars and local unrest have been streaming into Europe from areas of the Near and Middle East, and from countries in Africa.

This is just the current manifestation of circumstances which have parallels in every era. Australia and almost every high-infocap country have had mass movements from poorer countries under stress for many years -- migrants have come from Vietnam, Korea, China, Sudan, you name it. In the aftermath of World War 2, many displaced populations in Europe headed to Canada, the USA, and Australia.

These refugees place a stress on migration procedures much greater than the milder forces of Syston Osmosis, which implies wholly voluntary movements for individual and family betterment -- the prospect of a better life, a higher standard of living. Refugee pressures threaten, and can break through, the barriers of national Membranes.

Nations strive to reinforce their Membranes against excessive flows, often with only limited success. Currently, countries like Greece and Italy have huge influxes of "boat people" refugees, leading to real difficulties in providing even minimum conditions for the newcomers.

Dealing with large refugee intakes is generally seen as a difficult and expensive task for countries, a task with major moral, practical, and political overtones. Many advanced countries dip into their budgets to accommodate refugees because they feel it is an obligation for humanitarian reasons.

Local grass-roots opposition to large intakes of refugees is usually on the grounds that it will disturb local standards of living and "normal life", make it harder to run schools, and take jobs away from locals. This it may well do. And the costs of maintaining a refugee influx, particularly if they are shut up in camps and not allowed to work, can be very great.

A different approach to refugees and migrants
There is a different way to tackle problems of refugee and migrant influxes which could turn a problem into an asset. This is described in more detail in a companion article, The UN-Australia Transition County (UNATCO) plan for turning the refugee problem into an asset.

Basically, the idea is for a country such as Australia to negotiate a long lease (99 years) of a reasonably large area of land from a country in the region, and use this as a Transition County where migrants from wherever can live and work, with the aim of eventually gaining Australian citizenship.

Figure MT202-F13. Migration of refugees via a Transition County.

The land area is called a County because it would need to be of similar size to an English county, big enough to have its own airports, dock towns, cities, and transport networks. In Figure F13, as a possible example, part of the island of Palawan in the Philippines has been arbitrarily picked.

A Transition County would not, in any sense, resemble a migrant assessment centre. Instead, it would be more like one of China's Special Economic Zones, or like the British Overseas territory of Gibraltar.

Moreover, it should be a place where education, training, and innovative approaches to government and research were pursued under its own laws, Constitution or Mission Statement. It should have many universities and training colleges, many schools and R&D centres.

Obviously the infocap involved in setting up such a concept would be large. But it should be undertaken from the viewpoint that the Australian Government would make money from it. And, using the principles outlined in MT201: Matrix Economics, the more money put into the concept, particularly the more R&D funding, the greater the ultimate return to the Australian Government.

The Transition County could be a test site for innovation in government, innovation not usually feasible in standard economies (in MT201 terms, 5% Governments). As an example on taxation rates, personal and company taxes could be set at a flat rate of (say), 25% on everything earned. If this threw up difficulties, changes could be made in a way not feasible for a standard economy.

Many of the operations of government itself could be contracted out or outsourced in innovative ways. Such concepts will be considered further in MT208, Matrix Government.

How the Transition County would operate
Figure F13 above is a graphic depiction of how a Transition County would operate. Migrants of every sort, including refugees, would be allowed fairly freely into the County -- the Membrane Chamber for entry would have a pretty mild Membrane operating.

But all Transitioners would have to give a DNA sample on entry, so that they could be positively identified during their time in the County. Voluntary Transitioners paying their own way into the County would have to deposit a Bond of $1000 per person, as the nominal cost of repatriating them elsewhere in the world should they break fundamental County laws. Refugees whose passages had been funded by relief agencies and the like would need to build up a Bond by subtraction from their earnings.

Transitioners would be encouraged to start their own businesses and take up employment with others, at the same time as improving their own skills and their abilities to operate in the modern world. In all these areas, there would be great emphasis on using fellow Transitioners, often from their own backgrounds, as efficient, economical, and ethical sources of the infocap needed to make good in the new environment.

So, while Australia would need to provide the initial resources, as soon as possible teachers of English to Afghans would be drawn from competent Afghan transitioners, medical services for Syrians would be shifted to Syrian doctor-transitioners, engineering training for East Africans would come partly from African engineer-transitioners, and so on.

In a way, this is how things happen in practice today with migrants of every sort. You move to Australia from China, you get a job with your Chinese uncle's friend who came over 20 years previously. Arrangements like "family sponsorship" are effective and cheap ways of helping newcomers settle in.

What my grandfather told me -- getting on in new circumstances
People moving to a new area with a rather different culture from that where they came from are faced with the need to adjust to the new culture. Such adjustments may be minor and easily accommodated, but others may need a major change of heart.

My grandfather once gave me this advice: "If you want to get on with people, first you should dress like them; then you should talk like them". Everybody will be able to recall situations at work, in business, or in clubs where this advice was good advice. There is more on this topic at MT104: I've Got You Under My Skin -- Syston Boundaries and SIOS.

Dressing in general accordance with the norm can be quite important. If I was attending interviews for a job in Australia, and insisted on wearing a top hat throughout all such interviews, I would be unlikely to get employment. Prospective employers would say, "He's just not serious about the job", and they would be right. To be serious, I would have to lose the top hat.

Dressing according to some norm is not hard or particularly expensive. Speaking according to a norm may be much harder, particularly if the speech is to be in English, and this is not your native tongue. A migrant may need years of study and practice to get on well in an English-speaking community.

A perhaps radical suggestion in the "Transition County" article is that transitioners there could work towards the award of Australian citizenship while still in the County. This might take a minimum of 3 years, maybe a lot longer, but if successful they would be in a similar situation to someone born to Australian parents living overseas.

A further requirement for citizenship might be that transitioners had enough job skills to be able to earn a living in Australia, and that their children, if any, had attained a reasonable level of education.

For transitioners living within the County, conforming with such Australian norms would be entirely a matter of their choice. Within the County, there would be only the normal requirements of any family anywhere, of being able to support themselves.

And so, transitioners might build up lucrative businesses within the County, occupy good positions in the professions or in government, and dress and behave as in their original culture -- as long as this did not conflict with the basic rights of others.

But those transitioners who wanted to obtain Australian citizenship might need to adjust their attitudes. As an example, insistence on wearing headscarves by women in public, or requiring this of girl children, would have to go -- just like my top hat.

Such requirements are not just in the realm of personal behaviour. One of the rules for membership of the European Union is that a country does not have capital punishment. Turkey is an applicant for membership of the EU, and has abandoned capital punishment.

This situation does set a precedent for getting administrations to change their behaviour in a totally peaceful and voluntary manner. Set up the rules for your club, your company, your alliance of nations, and those willing to observe the rules may join.

Positive voluntary changes in the behaviour of systons may be achieved by offering them membership of a wider syston provided that they comply with the wider syston's rules.
Proposition MT202-P3.

After Graduation, what then?
For convenience let's say that a transitioner who has gained Australian citizenship, within the County, has "graduated". What is the new Transitioner Graduate likely to do then?

Well, of course they are free to move to Australia, and they may well do that. But there are many other choices open to them.

First, if they have built up a good business in the County, or have a good job in business or government there, they may want to carry on there for the moment. They still have the option to move to the "Mainland", or to start a new branch of their business there, at any time.

After the Transition County has been operating for some years, particularly if the necessary infocap has been put in at the beginning and innovative procedures introduced, the County may have become very prosperous and forward-looking. It may be ahead of other countries, including Australia, at such a time.

So, with a rating of, say, 120 IUs, ahead of Britain, the Transitioner may prefer to stay in the County. Even if the Transitioner has graduated (has won Australian citizenship), they may have family members who still have some way to go. Another reason to hang on.

Those who have left a depressed or war-stricken country behind to come to the County may observe that this country has now got back on a good path. They may prefer to go back to the old country and help improve that with the skills and capital they have picked up in the County.

Even, with their briefcase holding an Australian Citizenship certificate, and the "preferred-migrant" status they have obtained in the County, they may wish to try their luck elsewhere in the world. They have their citizenship and preferred status to fall back on, if that doesn't work out.

And if they do decide to start again in Australia, or transfer their established manufacturing or IT business there, they represent additions to the assets of Australia, however numerous they might be.

Is migration good or bad for a country?
Some reasons have been given above as to why immigration, at least in the longer term, is good for a country. It increases diversity, and migrants often bring with them extra skills which increase a country's infocap.

There have been many quantitative studies which bring actual figures to support the idea that immigration is good for a country. Here are some extracts from an item in a UK newspaper [11].

(The Telegraph, Thursday 26 May 2016).
The truth about immigration and the economy

Expert analysis has shown that immigration is good for Britain's economy.

Immigration dominates British politics and will continue to do so in the build-up to next year's election, but according to the experts, foreigners are good for the economy.

Immigration is the most contentious issue in British politics. Net migration is rising, leaving David Cameron with an uncomfortable problem ahead of next year's general election.

The Office for National Statistics released figures earlier this month that showed a net flow of 212,000 migrants to Britain, up nearly 60,000 year-on-year. The previous year there was a net flow of 154,000 migrants.

But the total number of migrants walking in and out of Britain does not necessarily tell the whole story. The -- sometimes uncomfortable -- truth about immigration is that it really is good for Britain's economy.

Last year, the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development, a respected think-tank, suggested immigration means the UK deficit is up to 16 billion smaller than it would be if we relied on homegrown workers alone.

Figure MT202-F14. The OECD estimate for the impact of immigration on the public finances excluding pensions -- showing a 1.02 per cent GDP contribution. From [9].

The OECD has found that international migration is making a positive difference to Britain's public finances. According to its number crunchers, the Government's deficit is smaller than it would have been without the presence of immigrants in the UK.

The Treasury's Office for Budget Responsibility regularly predicts that if immigration falls dramatically the public finances face a new 65 billion black hole because of lost tax revenues. The Treasury itself puts 0.25 percentage points of annual GDP growth down to immigration -- that's a bit more than 4 billion.

And a study last year by economists at University College London calculated that recent European immigrants pay 8.8 billion more in tax than they consume in public services.

Simply put: The recovery would not be going as well as it is without immigrants. British taxes are lower, spending is higher and the deficit is smaller -- in part thanks to foreigners.

So, why do people oppose immigrants?
The thing is, even if you accept that more immigrants will be good for your country in the long term, the immediate problems of today caused by such an influx may be hard to cope with.

The article in the the UK newspaper quoted above [11] also had surveys of British people's views on whether immigration to the UK should be reduced. And, of course, quite a large percentage of the population thought it should.

An interesting aspect of their surveys was that many of those surveyed who had themselves migrated to Britain in earlier years were in favour of restricting further migration. And the longer the migrants had been in Britain, the more strongly were they in favour of limiting future immigration!

Currently, Britain is in the throes of a referendum ("The Brexit") to decide whether the country should withdraw from the European Union. Those supporting such a withdrawal, such as former Mayor of London Boris Johnston, say that it will enable Britain to better control immigration. What Boris appears not to have considered, is that such control may do more harm to the country than good.

There is a guideline to such matters in the MT Rulebook, XT803: Checklist -- Tools of Matrix Thinking. This guideline is MT Checklist # 2. Verify a syston by shifting to narrower and wider systons to see whether tags and other features still apply.

What this Rule says is, "Look at the situation you are in, and note down what people think is the right thing. Then look at a narrower or wider situation, either part of, or including, your current situation, and observe whether what people think is the same.

In the case of the Brexit, if Mr Johnson thinks Britain will be better off by fencing the country off from the rest of the European Union, what would he think about a proposal to fence off the English Home Counties from the rest of the Britain, say with a barrier erected from The Wash to Southampton Water?

What it comes down to, is that immigrants of any sort may cause difficulties for those already in a country or other area. Also, it is almost a given that their arrival will give rise to changes -- and opposition to change is a natural part of being human.

The Transition County scheme outlined above is intended to reduce the impact of migrants to Australia, and the difficulties arising from this, almost to zero. If you live in WA, a new Transitioner buying in your street would have virtually the same minimum impact as a buyer coming from Tasmania.

There is a short extract on this matter, drawn from my own past, at XT802: Migration -- All Things Pass. It ends with a Proposition which will be re-used here.

A syston will be advantaged by the highest possible immigration rate it can cope with.
Proposition MT202-P4.

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References and Links

[1] What is Reverse Osmosis Water All About. .
[2] The Movement of Water in a Plant. .
[3] Bruce Rottink. How Do Plants Get a Drink? .
[4] PurePro USA Nanofiltration (NF) Membranes. .
[5] Osmotic Pressure Calculation. .
[6] David Noel. The UN-Australia Transition County (UNATCO) plan for turning the refugee problem into an asset -- A different approach to refugees and migrants. .
[7] GDP per Capita (PPP) - by country. .
[8] Net Migration Rates Globally in 2030. .
[9] List of countries by immigrant population. .
[10] Countries by Foreign-Born Population. .
[11] The truth about immigration and the economy. .

Companion articles
The UN-Australia Transition County (UNATCO) plan for turning the refugee problem into an asset -- A different approach to refugees and migrants. At: .

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Draft Version 1.0, 2016 May 2-Jun 7. V. 1.1, First web version, 2016 Jun 8.