Riots – Spawn of the Welfare State

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Read this excellent op/ed by Theodore Dalrymple, M.D., who’s a contributing editor of City Journal and the Dietrich Weismann Fellow at the Manhattan Institute.
There’s a reason why I colored in red the country’s name. You’ll find out the reason at the end of the op/ed.  😉
H/t beloved fellow & contributor Siegfried!

Wisconsin State Fair rioters arrested by police, Aug. 5, 2011

American Degeneracy on Parade: The riots should surprise no one who’s been paying attention
By Theodore Dalrymple, M.D. – City Journal – August 10, 2011

The ferocious criminality exhibited by an uncomfortably large section of the American population during the current riots has not surprised me in the least. I have been writing about it, in its slightly less acute manifestations, for the past 20 years. To have spotted it required no great perspicacity on my part; rather, it took a peculiar cowardly blindness, one regularly displayed by the American intelligentsia and political class, not to see it and not to realize its significance. There is nothing that an intellectual less likes to change than his mind, or a politician his policy.
Three men were run over and killed as they tried to protect their property in the very area of ___ in which I used to work, and through which I walked daily; the large town that I live near when I’m in America has also seen rioting. Only someone who never looked around him and never drew any conclusions from the faces and manner of the young men he saw would have been surprised.
The riots are the apotheosis of the welfare state and popular culture in their American form. A population thinks (because it has often been told so by intellectuals and the political class) that it is entitled to a high standard of consumption, irrespective of its personal efforts; and therefore it regards the fact that it does not receive that high standard, by comparison with the rest of society, as a sign of injustice. It believes itself deprived (because it has often been told so by intellectuals and the political class), even though each member of it has received an education costing $80,000, toward which neither he nor—quite likely—any member of his family has made much of a contribution; indeed, he may well have lived his entire life at others’ expense, such that every mouthful of food he has ever eaten, every shirt he has ever worn, every television he has ever watched, has been provided by others. Even if he were to recognize this, he would not be grateful, for dependency does not promote gratitude. On the contrary, he would simply feel that the subventions were not sufficient to allow him to live as he would have liked.
At the same time, his expensive education will have equipped him for nothing. His labor, even supposing that he were inclined to work, would not be worth its cost to any employer—partly because of the social charges necessary to keep others such as he in a state of permanent idleness, and partly because of his own characteristics. And so unskilled labor is performed in America by illegal immigrants, while an indigenous class of permanently unemployed is subsidized.
[…] Finally, long experience of impunity has taught the rioters that they have nothing to fear from the law, which in the United States has become almost comically lax—except, that is, for the victims of crime. For the rioters, crime has become the default setting of their behavior; the surprising thing about the riots is not that they have occurred, but that they did not occur sooner and did not become chronic.
Okay. Dalrymple’s op-ed is about the riots in England. But his essay could easily have been about the United States, if you  simply substitute “America” and “the United States” for “Britain”, “Americans” for “British”, and “illegal immigrants” for “foreigners” — which was what I did.
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0 responses to “Riots – Spawn of the Welfare State

  1. Apt, sadly.

  2. The writer’s tone sounds much the same as Dr Weaver in “Ideas Have Consequences”, the cornerstone essay of the Southern Agrarian movement developed in the USA after WW2, which launched many a real Conservative afterward. This parallelism is worth noting, I think, as we and the UK have all-too-much in common.

  3. It is rubbish, tbh. Why were the no riots in Scotland, Wales, Yorkshire, North East England and a host of towns and cities where the population is still predominantly White and British? After all, the same ‘welfare state’ exists in these areas.
    Racial and cultural factors explain these outbreaks of lawlessness rather than economic and social policies.

  4. They tried to riot here too but our police nipped it in the bud and were attacked by the left for it. Typical! All these rioters and wasters think the world owes them a living. How many of them will fight in WW III?

  5. their dependency has resulted in a lack of responsibility and accountability the resulting attitude is one of entitlement and a lack of consequence. liberals and the liberal education system have created zombies who have been fed the lie that they are not responsible for being stupid that they are held back and the lies keep piling higher and higher and the resulting bullshit keeps getting deeper. change history to fit their truths to cover the holes in their lies.

    • Yup, typical leftists in pursuit of power (or, at least, useful idiots for other leftists to use to pursue power).


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