The people suffering most cruelly in the “New Sweden” are the elderly. The costs of immigration borne by the welfare state have led to a quarter of a million retirees living below the EU poverty line. Meanwhile, the government recently added another 30 billion kronor (about $3.6 billion) to the migration budget. The 70 billion kronor ($8.4 billion) Sweden will spend on asylum seekers in 2016 is more than what the entire police force and justice system cost, more than national defense costs, and twice the amount of child benefits.
Sweden’s 9.5 million residents are thus forced to spend 70 billion kronor on letting citizens of other countries come in. In comparison, the United States, with its 320 million residents, spent $1.56 billion on refugees in 2015. The editorial columnist PM Nilsson commented in the business paper, Dagens Industri:
“To understand the scope of the increase in spending, a historic look back can be worthwhile. When the right bloc came to power in 2006, the cost was 8 billion [kronor] a year. In 2014, it had gone up to 24 billion. That summer, then Minister of Finance Anders Borg talked about the increase being the most dramatic shift in the state budget he had ever seen. The year after, 2015, the cost rose to 35 billion, and in 2016, it is projected to rise to 70 billion.”
For many years, the politicians managed to fool the Swedish people into thinking that even if immigration presented an initial cost, the immigrants would soon enable the country to turn a profit. Now, more and more research indicates that the asylum seeker immigrants rarely or never find work. The daily newspaper Sydsvenskan reported in February, for example, that 64% of Malmö’s immigrants are still unemployed after living in Sweden for ten years. The government openly calculates in its budget that in four years, 980,000 people will be living on either sickness benefits, disability pensions, unemployment benefits, “introduction benefits” or social welfare.
Swedes, who for many years have paid the highest taxes in the world without whining, are now taking to social media to express their anger that their money is going to citizens of other countries. More and more Swedes are choosing to emigrate from Sweden, mainly to the other Nordic countries, but also to Spain, Portugal and Great Britain, where taxes on pensions are considerably less.
But there are worse problems than the economic aspect. A sense of insecurity and fear has gripped the many Swedes who live close to asylum houses. On some level, the government seems to have grasped that danger: in a recent decision to continue maintaining border controls, Interior Minister Anders Ygeman wrote:
“The Swedish Civil Contingencies Agency (Myndigheten för samhällsskydd och beredskap), MSB, makes the assessment that the flow of migrants still brings challenges to upholding security in society, when it comes to the ability to maintain certain important public functions, among other things. Several of these challenges are expected to persist over time. The Police Authority’s assessment is still that a serious threat to public order and internal security exists. The Immigration Service still advocates border controls.”