The original Edict of Potsdam (left) from 1685 may be renewed for all British refugees regardless of race or religion. After the Revocation of the Edict of Nantes by Louis XIV in that year, French dragonnades began coercing French Protestants to convert to Catholicism (right).
CIB Breaking News, VIENNA -- A German government spokesperson said yesterday that the 1685 Edict of Potsdam may be renewed to allow Brexit refugees from Great Britain to resettle in Germany. The original Edict was promulgated to resettle Huguenot (French Protestant) refugees escaping persecution after Louis XIV revoked the Edict of Nantes that same year. Some 400,000 are thought to have fled France for Great Britain, the Dutch Republic, Prussia, Switzerland, and overseas colonies, bringing with them valuable scientific, technological and entrepreneurial skills. Among them were such luminaries as Denis Papin, who first developed the principle of the atmospheric steam engine.
The first piston steam engine (left), developed by Huguenot refugee Denis Papin in 1690 in Germany and then brought by him to England, where it probably influenced Newcomen’s first practical 1712 steam engine (right).
Apart from humanitarian grounds, the German government hopes to reap important economic benefits from the migration of highly skilled British workers fleeing the decades of chaos expected to follow from the invocation of the EU Article 50 exit clause (“Revocation of the Edict of Lisbon”), much as Prussia and Britain did by welcoming Huguenots.
It still remains to be seen who will play the role of Louis XIV in a future British government after Boris “Brexit Dumpty” Johnson said that it “cannot be me”. The German spokesperson placed the decision in the context of Chancellor Angela Merkel’s “wir schaffen das” liberal immigration and asylum policy, despite opposition from anti-immigrant AfD and Pegida movements. The spokesperson went on to state
It’s a good sign that the youth of Great Britain are more clever than their bizarre political elite. For that reason we can’t raise our drawbridge on them. We have to think now about what we can offer Great Britain’s younger generation. (The Guardian 3 July)
The German government is even considering extending personal asylum offers to prominent Brexit opponents, such as the Financial Times’ satirical columnist Robert Shrimsley, who in his column on July 1 decrying the referendum result wrote
The unnamed German spokesperson said that the German government would be happy to create a “Berlin bubble” attractive to such Brexit opponents as Shrimsley should they find the obtuseness of their compatriots increasingly unbearable.I realise that this may look like the much-derided elitist metropolitan sneering. I do, indeed, live in a London bubble in which none of my friends voted out. And you know what? That’s just how I like it. After Thursday, that London bubble looks even more attractive. It is surely a badge of honour that no one close to me is foolish enough to have believed anything Boris Johnson told them.
In an indication of future problems, however, an AfD spokesperson immediately objected that Germany is already full of degenerate (“entartet”), uppity Jewish refugee satirists, such as Wladimir Kaminer:
The Jewish refugee satirist boat is already full in Germany. We need to leave room for Jewish weaponized Keynesian economists like Paul Krugman, who will soon enough be looking for someplace to flee after Donald Trump takes office. He’s the only economist capable of filling the shoes of Hjalmar Schacht in running a proper employment policy (“eine ordentliche Beschäftigungspolitik”). Germany long ago lost all its weaponized Keynesians in the name of politically correct Ordoliberalism.
Additional reporting was contributed by Kurt Tucholsky in Berlin and Evelyn Waugh in London.