13 votes

In France, a racist conspiracy theory edges into the mainstream

12 comments

  1. [2]
    EgoEimi
    Link
    While it is inevitable that we view the politics of other countries through the lens of our own, we should also try to understand things on the ground. I recently listened to a fascinating...

    While it is inevitable that we view the politics of other countries through the lens of our own, we should also try to understand things on the ground.

    I recently listened to a fascinating interview with journalist Megan McArdle who raised thought-provoking points about national identity, belonging, the purpose of a country, balancing entitlements and obligations, etc. Should a country just be an impersonal geographical organization that provides services, and people only come to sell labor? Or should it be an organization of individuals who are connected together by shared culture to form a people? This discussion has been longing evolving and gaining urgency in our era of globalism. I think it's an important one, and dismissing it as racist reactionism leaves a lot of legitimate issues unaddressed.

    I think the idea of intentional demographic replacement is ridiculous. Now, I'm a queer nonwhite person and a son of immigrants, but I think it is naive to dismiss everything from the right, just as it is naive to blindly accept everything from the left. In the west, we are democracies and we must have a good faith public conversation. I think there are important issues to address:

    • We haven't been able to achieve a sustainable labor market where people can find dignified work where they grew up. Instead business interests rely on cheap foreign labor to work farms, kitchens, and factories instead of paying fair wages to local labor.
    • This is also driven by western consumer addiction to cheap goods and services. We want fair wages but not fair prices.
    • There is an assumption that cultural assimilation will happen on its own. But we're seeing that in sufficiently large enough numbers, immigrants can and do form culturally self-sustaining communities that resist assimilation.
    • If assimilation fails and the unassimilated immigrant population becomes large enough, then there would be two peoples in one nation. This may be acceptable, maybe not.
    • Assimilation isn't a one-way street. Immigrants eventually infuse their host culture with their own. Often this is good and natural, as cultures as dynamic and ever-evolving. But one must acknowledge that there can be negative cultural influences, and in a democracy people should be allowed to discuss what direction they want their culture to take. As a thought experiment, what would happen to Swedish culture if a time portal were invented and one million white southerners from the 1800s immigrated to Sweden?

    Again, there are important questions, and there must be dialogue.

    8 votes
    1. skybrian
      Link Parent
      It might worth pointing out that in the US, there’s long been an assumption and tradition of moving to opportunity and sometimes it can be as strong as the tradition of staying put. The frontier...

      It might worth pointing out that in the US, there’s long been an assumption and tradition of moving to opportunity and sometimes it can be as strong as the tradition of staying put. The frontier closed a long time ago, but there’s still some of that. I think these days lots of people move to Texas?

      Maybe needing to move isn’t so bad if you like where you’re going and there are good opportunities there?

      3 votes
  2. [8]
    Comment deleted by author
    Link
    1. [2]
      streblo
      Link Parent
      Disclaimer: parent. It's not a problem, just a challenge for policy makers to overcome. OK, people are having less kids. This is a problem only in terms of public policy resulting from falling...

      Disclaimer: parent.

      We need a leftist answer to this problem.

      It's not a problem, just a challenge for policy makers to overcome.

      OK, people are having less kids. This is a problem only in terms of public policy resulting from falling fertility rates. Like you say, you can either replace with immigration like the West or deal with inverted age pyramid/loss of GDP like Japan or South Korea. Those are pretty much the only tenable solutions -- and before you say COL, fertility rates have been plummeting well before COL sky rocketed. It wouldn't hurt, but I don't think it will solve the problem. Birth control, sexual liberation, higher education, more 'stuff' to do and lifestyles to lead all result in less kids being born.

      as that's not going to win over the vote of the grandma that votes in every election who sees her country as dying

      Well (figurative) grandma’s gone in a few years so I don't think she matters. Now, (major generalizations incoming) rural (often white Christian) populations are still getting married at 19 and having kids like they were 100 years ago which is where I think the divide you mention comes from. Liberal/left white people with kids don't have anxiety about their white kids growing up in a less white world because they often live or have lived in less white cities and they understand it's not an issue. This is not true for rural people, and there is a often a fear of the unknown.

      I'm not sure how but bridging those two worlds would be a good start. What I will push back on is letting fertility rates be framed as an intrinsic problem rather than a policy problem addressing the fallout. By painting it as an intrinsic problem a la the 'Great Reset' it points to crashed fertility rates as a problem that needs to be solved by boosting fertility rates – i.e. less women in education/careers, less birth control, and more homemakers and births. That’s really what’s at the heart of the “Great Reset” imo.

      11 votes
      1. [2]
        Comment deleted by author
        Link Parent
        1. streblo
          Link Parent
          It's true we exist in an era of massive social and technological change, but this is true of everyone. My parents came from bigger families than I have and... it's fine? I'm not sure if these are...

          The past century has meant a lot of "white people" having less people. Fewer siblings. Fewer cousins. Fewer aunts and uncles. Fewer children, and if you have them, they go to college, end up rejecting your politics or religion, and then move away to the big city to where the jobs are, and so in a physical sense mostly disappear from the parents' lives.

          It's true we exist in an era of massive social and technological change, but this is true of everyone. My parents came from bigger families than I have and... it's fine?

          Civic and religious organization participation has also collapsed. In a quite literal sense, most white people in the developed world are actively living through the death of the community they've had for generations.

          I'm not sure if these are necessarily the result of falling fertility rates. Certainly they are correlated but like I said before, we're living in a sea of change and it's hard to isolate cause and effect.

          Immigration isn't really a satisfying answer to me as a solution, it's only a bandage. That's because it doesn't really fix the problem long-term.

          For sure. But it's a solution to the problem now, and probably tens of generations away from not being a solution. Moreover, it's a problem that can easily be put on layaway. Unlike the climate crisis, no undue interest is levied on future generations for failure to act today. In 200 hundred years the 'solution' to immigration is the same as it is today. Reduce growth and prepare for a reduction (but not collapse) in standard of living.

          5 votes
    2. [5]
      Autoxidation
      Link Parent
      I'm not convinced it is a problem, and I actually think it's a benefit to humanity as a whole. The standard of living in developed countries (and probably everyone who uses this website, including...

      I'm not convinced it is a problem, and I actually think it's a benefit to humanity as a whole. The standard of living in developed countries (and probably everyone who uses this website, including myself) requires an enormous amount of resources from the developing and undeveloped world. An easier way to help raise the standard of living for everyone on the planet is to have fewer people.

      8 votes
      1. [3]
        Comment deleted by author
        Link Parent
        1. Cycloneblaze
          Link Parent
          This is predicated on the idea that "your people" is a discrete thing that is separate from "other people", and that "your people" must be defended from the "other people". That my family will at...

          "Your family and people will end and that's a good thing"

          This is predicated on the idea that "your people" is a discrete thing that is separate from "other people", and that "your people" must be defended from the "other people". That my family will at some nebulous point in the future die out, or be in some way different to the way (read: the skin colour) that I am now. That is tribalism and it's racism. I'd rather attack that idea at its root.

          7 votes
        2. Autoxidation
          Link Parent
          We can't even get a lot of people (in the US at least) to act on climate change a few decades away, there's no way people are going to care about something that is generations away from occurring.

          telling people "Your family and people will end and that's a good thing" is not going to win over a lot of votes

          We can't even get a lot of people (in the US at least) to act on climate change a few decades away, there's no way people are going to care about something that is generations away from occurring.

          6 votes
      2. [2]
        vegai
        Link Parent
        Then again, you probably cannot have at the same time a low standard of living and a high standard of education. Which means that the human population is mainly increasing on the uneducated side,...

        Then again, you probably cannot have at the same time a low standard of living and a high standard of education. Which means that the human population is mainly increasing on the uneducated side, and I cannot imagine any scenario where that could be a good thing.

        1. MimicSquid
          (edited )
          Link Parent
          I mean, you can absolutely have a lower standard of living with a highly educated populace. You could do it with a weak economy, or a strong economy with high luxury taxes and currency controls....

          I mean, you can absolutely have a lower standard of living with a highly educated populace. You could do it with a weak economy, or a strong economy with high luxury taxes and currency controls. It's not impossible at all, it just requires some tradeoffs that seem unpleasant.

          Or, more optimistically, a culture who priorities simplicity and efficiency, rather than luxury and consumption.

          4 votes
  3. Fal
    Link

    Valérie Pécresse, the center-right presidential candidate, used the phrase ‘great replacement’ in a speech punctuated with coded attacks on immigrants and Muslims.

    6 votes
  4. streblo
    Link
    Same thing here in Canada. And that’s from the more ‘moderate’ conservative party we have – the crazy has routinely been on display in the other one.

    Same thing here in Canada. And that’s from the more ‘moderate’ conservative party we have – the crazy has routinely been on display in the other one.

    2 votes
  5. Staross
    Link
    A good part of the traditional center-right rallied Macron (he is the center-right candidate) so Les Républicains are trying to appeal to more far-right electors. That said they are incredibly bad...

    A good part of the traditional center-right rallied Macron (he is the center-right candidate) so Les Républicains are trying to appeal to more far-right electors. That said they are incredibly bad so I don't expect them to have much success (in the conspiracy theory she mentioned they are among the bad guys...).

    1 vote