While Elitists On The Editorial Pages Look Down On French Voters, A Letter Writer From Torrance Appreciates Them
But a letter writer to the Times from Torrance said, in my view, just what had to be said, and I'm going to quote him in full:
"As a member of the working class, I found it instructive that the 'neo-liberal' catechistic editorial "The French No" (June 1) and "Why Europeans Are Mad as Hell at the New Europe" (Commentary, June 2) by "neoconservative" Max Boot converged in lock step (or lock think) to look down an apparently shared patrician nose at the sarcastically portrayed job security concerns of the French working class, i.e., "Polish plumbers invading Paris."
"The neo-(fill in the blank) elites, who smell a victory for the new world order just over the dunghill if only old Europe would convert to global capitalist theology and "dump the labor unions," outsource to seek absolute advantage, etc., obviously haven't a clue about what it is like to fear for the loss of a livelihood while leading a "life of quiet desperation" as the new religion and its sneering prophets in the media preach salvation but deliver squat."
The letter is signed by Jack Devine, God bless him. He is able to say more in two paragraphs than Michael Kinsley in a whole column.-
This has meaning beside the issue of the future of the European Union. The press and governments of the West are filled these days with would-be sophisticates who don't understand how the cosmopolitcan attitude builds resentment among the stay-at-homes who are either fond of their own neighborhoods or fear that outsiders are going to come in and ruin them, reduce their wages, take away their pensions and make them live like dogs..
I remarked at the time that the French and Dutch were no more willing to vote for the Germans, Poles and Romanians to move in and take over than people in Santa Monica would welcome an invasion and being told what to do by the people of Bell Gardens.
There's truly something communistic in all of this. We'll move in and take what we think what we need, and everyone will be equal. Or we at the Chicago Tribune will buy newspapers all over the country and ignore the views of the readers of the papers we're taking over. We'll build up those papers' profit margins by cost-cutting, and, if the quality of the papers are reduced, so be it.
It won't work. It's so Kinsleyesque to suggest the French are in a funk because they don't want France to be submerged by outsiders, or that I'm peculiar because I want a homeowned newspaper rather than one that's run from Chicago.
And it's not enough to promise the French, the Dutch, the British or Los Angelenos that they will continue to have autonomy, when everyone knows the decisions are going to be made either elsewhere or by people imported from somewhere else.
Such attitudes can only breed rebellion and mistreatment of the invaders. Maybe hundreds of years from now, there will be a truly united Europe, and the culturally richer countries, the French and the Dutch and the British, won't care. And maybe Los Angelenos will have a more obsequious attitude toward Chicago. But I doubt it.
No, the Germans are no more welcome at the Arch of Triumph or in Trafalgar Square than they were in 1940. And Dennis FitzSimmons is going to be no more welcome to tell Los Angelenos what kind of newspaper they should have in 2040 than he is today.