Category Archive 'City versus Country'

18 May 2017

Mitch Landrieu Took Down General Beauregard’s Statue

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MacAoidh notes that the revolutionary Left is reveling in its power to tear down monuments in New Orleans because that city, like so many others in this country, has become a one-party state ruled by a democrat party kleptocracy with a guaranteed grip on office.

Intelligent adults can see a Beauregard or a Robert E. Lee or a Jefferson Davis for the complex humans they were, and learn the lessons their lives can teach. Intelligent adults can also mark their contributions to what is good in our society while acknowledging their failings and those of the time in which they lived.

But it’s clear we have a shortage of intelligent adults. We particularly have that shortage in New Orleans, and have for some time.

It has worsened in recent years, but the exodus of intelligent adults – it’s been called “white flight,” but this is a lie; the middle class and the productive class is made up of people of all races, whether they share similar politics or not – from New Orleans is half a century old. As such, the city is made up of a new class of post-Katrina carpetbaggers, college students who hail mostly from far away, a giant underclass living on poor wages and government assistance, an outsized criminal class in and out of the penal system, small pockets of put-upon middle class homeowners and a declining monied elite. Most of the people who make the New Orleans metro area work have moved out of the city limits, and most of those moved away a generation or two ago.

And it’s mostly those people who have taken up the cause of those monuments. Not because they’re “white supremacists;” that is an ugly slur thrown around by the same social justice warriors who throw around racism as a towel into the ring in admission they lack a better argument. They wish to preserve the history, and a connection to the culture they and their families were raised in.

But they don’t live in New Orleans anymore.

That feeling of powerlessness, of knowing there is nothing they can do to stop the bowdlerization of the city’s history and that of the region, carries with it pain, to be sure. But that powerlessness is a choice; these people left. That’s not an indictment of them; they left for a better life in the suburbs or in another city. But the choice carries a consequence – when you leave, it’s those you leave behind who make the decisions in New Orleans. And when what’s left is a city of fools who make stupid decisions, last night is the natural result.

The question is what to do about it. Should the productive class, the protectors of the history and tradition of the region, the put-upon and the assailed simply move on? If so, don’t be surprised when the Beauregard takedown begets the Lee takedown and the Lee takedown begets the takedown of the Andrew Jackson statue in the famous square which bears his name.

Perhaps this can’t be stopped. Perhaps all that can be done is to inflict one’s own set of consequences on those left in the city.

After all, the productive classes in the suburbs still contribute an enormous economic impact to New Orleans. Maybe that should be rethought. Maybe the restaurateurs who live in Metairie should move their businesses closer to their homes. Maybe the lawyers and stockbrokers with offices in Orleans Parish should decamp for the ‘burbs and eschew the commute.

And maybe the captains of the Mardi Gras krewes who contribute such a massive amount to the city’s economy each year ought to rethink what they’re doing. After all, those krewes were all formed by the same people who contributed to the erection of the Lee, Davis and Beauregard statues. Their heritage is bound up in the same package as those monuments Mitch Landrieu and his bowdlerizing fan club have been howling to destroy.

And most of those krewe members don’t live in New Orleans anymore, either.

There are lots of parade routes in Metairie and Kenner, and lots of them in St. Tammany Parish. Those routes might not have the tradition of a St. Charles Avenue or Canal Boulevard, but they also don’t have the elevated risk of paradegoers being shot or the dysfunctional police department incapable of arresting the bad guys.

And these judgments can now be made, because of this corrosive, stupid modern mentality which is taking down the monuments. If the culture which gave us Beauregard is to be scrubbed, then the fruits of that culture shouldn’t be enjoyed – and those wonderful Mardi Gras parades are some of those fruits. Let the good follow the bad out of the city, and let Bacchus and Endymion and the others roll down Veterans Boulevard or Metairie Road for a time.

Landrieu has cast his marker down. New Orleans’ traditions and cultural patrimony is no longer welcome. So be it. Let the full consequences of that decision fall. And if “we don’t live there anymore,” then let the economic and other effects of that be felt.

RTWT

Thought experiment: how much longer would democrat party machines control US cities, how long would it be before working middle class Americans and families returned to them, if we somehow arranged to tear down all welfare housing and deported from those cities everybody on welfare?

22 Apr 2017

A Populist-Nationalist Revolt is Coming in France, Too

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Christopher Caldwell, in City Journal, discusses the untranslated three-book oeuvre of French commentator Christophe Guilluy, a specialist observer of French demographics, real estate, and economic developments, who describes the development, in France, of a similar practical separation and conflict of interests between the prosperous urban community of fashion elite and La France périphérique, the Gallic equivalent of Fly-Over America.

[T]he urban real-estate market is a pitiless sorting machine. Rich people and up-and-comers buy the private housing stock in desirable cities and thereby bid up its cost. Guilluy notes that one real-estate agent on the Île Saint-Louis in Paris now sells “lofts” of three square meters, or about 30 square feet, for €50,000. The situation resembles that in London, where, according to Le Monde, the average monthly rent (£2,580) now exceeds the average monthly salary (£2,300).

The laid-off, the less educated, the mistrained—all must rebuild their lives in what Guilluy calls (in the title of his second book) La France périphérique. This is the key term in Guilluy’s sociological vocabulary, and much misunderstood in France, so it is worth clarifying: it is neither a synonym for the boondocks nor a measure of distance from the city center. (Most of France’s small cities, in fact, are in la France périphérique.) Rather, the term measures distance from the functioning parts of the global economy. France’s best-performing urban nodes have arguably never been richer or better-stocked with cultural and retail amenities. But too few such places exist to carry a national economy. When France’s was a national economy, its median workers were well compensated and well protected from illness, age, and other vicissitudes. In a knowledge economy, these workers have largely been exiled from the places where the economy still functions. They have been replaced by immigrants. …

Top executives (at 54 percent) are content with the current number of migrants in France. But only 38 percent of mid-level professionals, 27 percent of laborers, and 23 percent of clerical workers feel similarly. As for the migrants themselves (whose views are seldom taken into account in French immigration discussions), living in Paris instead of Boumako is a windfall even under the worst of circumstances. In certain respects, migrants actually have it better than natives, Guilluy stresses. He is not referring to affirmative action. Inhabitants of government-designated “sensitive urban zones” (ZUS) do receive special benefits these days. But since the French cherish equality of citizenship as a political ideal, racial preferences in hiring and education took much longer to be imposed than in other countries. They’ve been operational for little more than a decade. A more important advantage, as geographer Guilluy sees it, is that immigrants living in the urban slums, despite appearances, remain “in the arena.” They are near public transportation, schools, and a real job market that might have hundreds of thousands of vacancies. At a time when rural France is getting more sedentary, the ZUS are the places in France that enjoy the most residential mobility: it’s better in the banlieues.

In France, the Parti Socialiste, like the Democratic Party in the U.S. or Labour in Britain, has remade itself based on a recognition of this new demographic and political reality. François Hollande built his 2012 presidential victory on a strategy outlined in October 2011 by Bruno Jeanbart and the late Olivier Ferrand of the Socialist think tank Terra Nova. Largely because of cultural questions, the authors warned, the working class no longer voted for the Left. The consultants suggested a replacement coalition of ethnic minorities, people with advanced degrees (usually prospering in new-economy jobs), women, youths, and non-Catholics—a French version of the Obama bloc. It did not make up, in itself, an electoral majority, but it possessed sufficient cultural power to attract one.

It is only too easy to see why a populist and nationalist revolt against the elite urban community of fashion is an international development.

A must-read.

21 May 2015

Letterman’s Missing Indiana Soul

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John Nolte explains how David Letterman responded to losing to Jay Leno by becoming a toady to the urban establishment.

I didn’t leave David Letterman, David Letterman left me.

It was sometime around 2003 when I began to realize Letterman didn’t like me anymore. His anger was no longer subversive and clever, it was bitter and mean-spirited and palpably real. He was a jerk playing to his loyal audience — urban, cynical, elite, Blue State jerks. The humble, self-deprecating Dave had become the nasty, arrogant Letterman, an unrecognizable bully who reveled in pulling the wings off those he saw as something less.

Chris Christie’s weight; Rush Limbaugh’s personal life; everything Bill O’Reilly; Bush, Cheney, Palin, and the last straw, a statutory rape joke about Palin’s 15 year-old daughter. Suddenly you were a dangerous idiot for protecting the most Indiana of things — your gun.

The man who could make you laugh at yourself now wanted to hurt and humiliate.

Letterman’s politics were never the issue. You can’t share my passion for show business and movies and let politics get in the way. Carlin was probably to the left of Letterman, but Carlin was funny and thoughtful and smart. Watching Letterman berate and hector and attempt to humiliate conservative guests over guns and the climate and the brilliance of Obama was boorish. Describing Mitt Romney as a “felon” was just sad.

The American Heartland had disappointed its own Indiana son, and for more than a decade the son was out for payback.

Or maybe Letterman was just so scared and insecure about losing what little audience he had, that he sold out his genius and Midwestern decency to bitterly cling to them? He certainly never again displayed the courage to challenge them, or to make them feel in any way uncomfortable.

Night after night the man who became my hero for biting the hand was now licking the boot — and convinced while doing so that he’s superior to the rest of us.

How I pity him.

Read the whole thing.

28 Apr 2015

Urban Slaves Versus Rural Free Men

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magritte

Henry Dampier has a fine cynical essay on the class structure of contemporary America (and Europe).

[There exists] a cultural and political tension between the American cities and the outside. Within the cities, the people are soft, disarmed, and androgynous. They’re lead by something like a slave caste of bureaucrats and artisans, lead by a small number of oligarchical corporate capitalists who own most of the property and the access to legal and financial leverage points over the system of trade.

Especially since the 2007 financial crisis and the escalation of the cost of living in these cities, this slave caste (which is often quite wealthy, as slave castes often have been, particularly in the East) has become more squeezed and dependent. It’s not uncommon to hear of particularly ambitious corporate slaves who have achieved ‘success’ only to be able to barely afford to buy a humble, lower middle class home in their favored region near the seat of power. Outside the seat of power, even a truck driver can afford to buy a beautiful home which would cost millions of dollars in the central cities. Inside the seat of power, most of the slaves can only afford to rent from either higher-end slaves or members of the oligarchical class.

This slave class tends to look down on the more numerous classes of dependent helots, concentrated in the same cities, but with a sense of pity, occasionally with contempt. The slave class sees it as their moral obligation to support and even uplift the helots, who are usually darker skinned. The slave class both hates, fears, and ridicules the freer middle classes from the less densely populated regions in the interior, not understanding how and why the freemen tend to value their rights to bear arms and hold their own property so much. …

This is really the shape of the conflict that’s brewing on the North American continent. The higher end slaves and the oligarchs don’t like the freemen, their culture, and their resistance to their oligarchical masters who live in New York, Washington, and elsewhere, even around the globe. The Republican party essentially represents the freemen, but usually only in terms of their brokering the many surrenders to the oligarchs and their golden-chained toads.

Read the whole thing.

Hat tip to Vanderleun.

25 Feb 2014

UK Butcher Shop Forced to take Down Window Display

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It happened in Sudbury, as the Daily Mail reports:

A high Street butcher in Suffolk has been forced to take down its window display, as shoppers are said to be offended by the sight of bits of dead animals.

Hanging pigs’ heads, limp rabbits and dead pheasants were upsetting the children.

The senseless twits behind the hate campaign mounted against JBS Family Butchers of Sudbury say they are trying to protect their children from the ugliness of ‘mutilated carcasses’.

This seems implausibly puritanical. Any child with internet access and a stack of video games will have seen far worse.

These sentimental folk are part of an ever-growing collective ignorance about food and farming that is immensely damaging not only to the countryside, to farming and to animals — but also to ourselves.

Our lack of understanding of where food really comes from is helping to create mountains of food waste and a population of fat, unhealthy Britons.

Read the whole thing.

This kind of urban deracination has real consequences. People who think that meat is manufactured somewhere in a factory laboratory look upon all animals as lovable Disney characters and are eager to ban hunting and all the other field sports. Meanwhile, demand for antiseptic and completely uniform food items makes old-fashioned family farming and human animal husbandry impossible and meat animals are that much more certain to be raised in unnatural factory farm hatcheries. Human ignorance and alienation from Nature and the countryside is bad for agriculture, bad for animals, bad for the countryside, and impoverishing to human culture.

Hat tip to Jesse Swan.


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