Saturday, November 05, 2005

Firestorm Paris

Oh, yeah, for any of you living under a rock, the City of Paris has been in flames for the better part of the last week. Like many riots in our own nation's history, this one started over a police incident and then boiled into the streets. In that same pattern, the riots took on a life of their own.

In a break from that pattern, the situation has gone from "riots" to "unrest" (never a good sign)and are starting to spread to other parts of France.

Unlike riots in our own nation's history (save that big one in Charleston in 1861, and the bigger one in Boston in 1776) civil unrest in France generally plays out with much higher stakes. This thing, unlike the professional protesters down in Argentina making trouble, has all the makings of a full scale, homegrown civil revolt. So far, the French government has responded with FEMA-like efficiency.

A cheap dig, to be sure, but the simple history of the matter is this: so goes Paris, so goes France. France has nuclear weapons, and a first world military apparatus. So goes France, Eurpoe generally gets caught up in the mess. The boys and girls in charge need to get in and restore order before those kids in the streets graduate from molotov cocktails to guillotines.

That's a slippery slope, I know, but stranger things have happened in our lifetimes.

Most likely this thing will be quelled, and the French won't actually have to deal with their national problems. They will once again be able to pretend they don't have any while telling every American that we're the ones with the most issues.

While this may shut up the very annoying individuals on the American left who like use the French as their model society and justification for unreasonable positions, this will (and already has) led the very loud and most obnoxious right wingers to use the French as their antithesis of society and justification for opposite, if still unreasonable positions.

And that makes me angry.

If you don't like the way the Main Stream Media is reporting on all this (many of us are not) make your first stop over at Clicked at MSNBC which is where I got most of these links. You can find the Gateway Pundit article yourself, as that is really the convocation of Right Blogistan links about this. Gloating doesn't even begin to describe it. You know the kind: "France in Retreat," "This is all the fault of Muslims," "we told you this would happen" wash rinse repeat ad nauseum ad infinitum.

Luckily, really real conservative Glen Reynolds has an excellent article on the subject over on Instapundit that really helps sum up a very complicated situation. I don't agree with ol' GR on many issues, but this boy's got a good head on his shoulders.


S.A.W.B. said...

Dear France,

Ha ha. You = on fire.



Dante said...

The only thing we as Americans should take away from this is that France's system of putting down large-scale riots needs some work and that America should look at whatever working solution they come up with in case we end up with the same situation some day.

And good ol "really real conservative" Dante has a bone to pick with the mainstream media over this event. It was a LONG time before many of them were even mentioning that a large number of the rioters were Muslim. Why is this important? It's not particaularly important, but if I didn't regularly peruse right-leaning news sources, I wouldn't have gotten that piece of information as soon as I did. If the right weren't harping so much over it, I wonder if I would've know that nugget of information at all. Oftentimes in their search for political correctness, the mainstream media will overlook a piece of information that is at least noteworthy. When they do this, they are just opening the door for someone else. There probably wouldn't be as much idiotic punditry over the issue if most of the mainstream news would've just mentioned to begin with that a lot of the rioters were indeed Muslim.

I just hope France gets a handle on things so we can get back to important news like NFL Cheerleaders having sex with each other in bar restrooms.

Buzzzbee said...

In my opinion, a government's #1 duty is to protect its people. This means maintain a strong military to protect against outside invaders, and a strong police force to protect law and order. I say put on the riot gear, throw away the rubber bullets and end this thing. That may seem extreme, but that's my stance.

Quick question: What's with all the liberal bashing. You could almost double for a Fox News anchor with all your Liberal Stereotypes. I am a liberal, I have no problem with the French. I think they, like most other western countries, have a superior health care system. I also recognize our shared democratic heritage(They helped us defeat the British in the Rev.War, and were creating democracy of their own during the Enlightment period like us). I do not idolize them or consider their government better than ours. I know this remark and others you've made about liberals isn't aimed at me, but who are you taking shots at? I've yet to meet these liberal characters that you and right-wing are always talking about. I know quite a few liberals and they aren't "extremists". They love this country just as much as any conservative, they just think we can do better. Maybe I'm just reading a little to much into your comments, it just seems like you take more shots a our side than you do at the right. How about the fervent hatred of the French by the conservatives. I mean really, have you heard these people talk about them on tv? Or even right here: Ha ha. You=on fire. A joke I'm sure, but very tasteless. Maybe I'm just not hanging out with a liberal enough crowd. Maybe these people really do constitute a significant number of the American Left Wing. Or maybe its just a bunch media sensationalism trying to make the 15 liberals in this country who actually fit the description of France loving, communist, hippy, pot-head, effeminate, promiscuous, amoral, anti-american, fetus hating pagans look like they make up the majority of OUR side.

In reference to Dante's post: I read in the Atlanta Journal Constitution that these were primarily Arab and African Muslims, who are first generation French citizens. They seem to reiterate that point in everyday in every article on the subject.

Patrick Armstrong said...

Remember, I didn't really excoriate liberals or conservatives with this post, I went after the "annoying indivduals on the American left" who "use the French as their model society and [justification for unreasonable positions]."

Unless you are an "annoying individual" on the "American left" who "uses France" to "justify unreasonable positions," I ain't talking about you, and you are reading too much into it. And if you don't know anyone who fits that description, consider yourself very lucky. There are many of them in Athens who hang out at coffee shops late into the night.

As a matter of being fair and balanced (in the really real way as opposed to the FoxNews Wink-Wink way) I took a shot at all the "obnoxious individuals on the American right" who use their severe distate of France to justify their unreasonable positions.

In the same paragraph.

I don't hate liberals or conservatives, I can't stand unreasonable people of all stripes.

So really, I'm showing my distaste for unreasonable people, the French reaction to their riots, and FEMA's handling of the Katrina situation. All cheap digs, to be sure.

If I really wanted to take cheapest dig, I would have led with "France, y'all are doin' a heckuva job!"

Buzzzbee said...

After I wrote that post, it occured to me that we had this exact same debate like a month ago; whether openly attacking extremists on our side helps shut them up or shines a spotlight on them and just perpetuates the problem. If I remember correctly, we just agreed to disagree.

Here's a joke I just came up with: What's the difference between a right-wing extremist and a left-wing extremist?

Give up? The right-wing extremists actually have power to affect our everyday lives. Here's an example: