German Finance Minister Wolfgang Schaeuble has come up with a new idea to solve the economic problems caused by the tide of immigrants flooding into EU member nations. Schaeuble's plan illustrates more graphically than ever how out of touch with the mood of the people European leaders are. The new idea is to impose a pan European Tax on petrol, the revenue raised to be used to finance efforts to manage the migrant crisis and pay social welfare benefits to immigrants.

The plan has already won support from European Commission Vice-President Valdis Dombrovskis, according to Germany's Der Spiegel."A gasoline tax, be it on a national or on a European level, could be a possible source of funding, especially when you consider that the oil price is at a historically low level now," Dombrovskis told Der Spiegel.

The idea failed to gain widespread support and was ridiculed in Germany and elsewhere in Europe however.

It is not the first time this month Schaeuble has courted controversy by supporting the pro - immigrant (ant - European accoding to critics) line taken by Chancellor Angela Merkel. When asked at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland about the Austrian government's decision to introduce upper limits to the number of refugees it will accept, he replied:

"I had to gasp a bit when I heard that we were not closely consulted on the decision. In recent months, the German chancellor has always made an effort to consult closely with Austria. But we know that the abilities of European Union member states are not infinite.

As such, it makes little sense for us to criticize each other. All of us accepted Sweden's decision to introduce border controls too. And that is a country that was for decades the most open to Immigration."

One has to "gasp a bit" at the arrogance of the German government when a senior official can assume that the elected government of Austria, a sovereign nation, should consult with its neighbours on issues relating to control of its own borders.

The interviewer on that occasion must have been somewhat shocked too and suggested Germany would soon be completely alone with its refugee policies, after trying and failing to bully its European partners into accepting refugee quotas defined by German government officials in conjunction with the Brussels bureaucratic dictatorship.

Schäuble replied: "No. In the EU, we agree that the pressures causing migration must be reduced. If the Schengen system (of border-free travel) is destroyed, Europe will be seriously endangered, politically and economically."

European voters, already suffering economic hardship because of the punitive taxes imposed to prop up the European Single Currency system are much less enthusiastic about the idea, especially in those inner city areas where the arrival of large numbers of immigrants has lead to a breakdown in law and order.

According to the latest figures released by the European border agency Frontex, there were some 1.2 million irregular entries to the European Union in the first 10 months of 2015, four times more than in the whole of 2014.

This is along with a larger number of legal immigrants (i.e. having passports, visas and work permits) than previously.

It should be noted that the Schengen agreement which has been used to justify the open borders policies of Germany, France, Sweden and other EU nations, provides for free movement of E U citizens within the zones members, it was never intended to facilitate free movement throughout Europe for those who enter the European Union illegally.