Riots and Liberals

After a few nights of "youth" riots in Sweden, the ordinary Swedes had had enough. So they took to the streets to protect their property. Fortunately the police knew just what to do. They attacked the "vigilantes."

You can see the logic of that for our modern liberal ruling class. It's one thing for youths to riot in their welfare ghettos. Nothing much you can do about that except search for root causes and implement midnight basketball programs.

But when the crypto-fascists in the middle class start a sensible and practical effort to defend themselves from mayhem, that's different. There is no excuse for taking the law into your own hands. Why, before you know it, the H-guy will be taking over.

Nobody in the ruling class is telling the rioters that their behavior will be stopped and their rebellion crushed by any means necessary. That would be racist, or classist, or anti-religious bigotry. No, the ruling class immediately clamped down on the ordinary people that were responding to the age-old problem that when seconds count the police are minutes away.

Of course, vigilantism cannot be allowed to flourish, and a good source on the subject, as on many others, is General Sherman's Personal Memoirs. They had a little problem with vigilantism in San Francisco in the 1850s and young Captain W.T. Sherman, U.S. Army, had to sort it out.

A common problem in all these outrages in "youth" ghettos, according to Mickey Kaus, is welfare. It's natural for people in the immigrant ghettoes to mistrust the majority culture around them and for the native population to fear the immigrants.

[But] relatively generous welfare benefits enable those in the ethnic ghetto to stay there, stay unemployed, and seethe. Without government subsidies, they would have to overcome the prejudice against them and integrate into the mainstream working culture. Work, in this sense, is anti-terrorist medicine.

Of course, to liberals, the welfare ghetto is not a bug, it's a feature.

The whole point of liberal politics is to segregate the immigrants to the city from the regular population. Then, ideally, you seed the population with community organizers to keep them raging against The Man. In the 1930s the agitation was done by militant union leaders to rile up the white working class. In the 1960s, after the death of Martin Luther King, it was done by racist Reverends. To keep South Chicago dependent and angry and voting Democrat you need a chap like Reverend Wright to spew out the eliminationist rhetoric.

In the Rodney King riots our liberal friends kept carefully on script. It was simply a problem of police brutality. But there was one difference from the Swedish riots: In LA the liberal ruling class did not sic the cops on their rich liberal Hollywood pals when they guarded their property with shotguns.

Why do the liberals insist, every time, on taking the part of rioters in immigrant ghettos against the general population?

It is really quite simple, as I've explained before. Government is force. So government and the ruling class are always looking for a project that needs force, a crisis in which they can convince people that ordinary sociable cooperation won't do the job.

In the old days this force project took the form of a border war, where our adult males defend our sacred food-producing land from the evil invaders trying to grab it.

But the industrial revolution changed all that. Now wealth was not land but the capital inside men's heads. But where could government fit in all this? What place would there be for force in the new world of the invisible hand? That is what William James was considering in "The Moral Equivalent of War."

It turned out that there were two options. Politicians could make a scandal out of movements at war with the new industrial commercial order, and mobilize the people to fight them. That's what conservatives do when we fight Communism and radical Islam. The other option was to make a scandal out of the new order itself. You could declare the job-creating businessmen, the risk-assuming insurance companies, the ordinary consumer goods makers to be monsters that exploit and cheat workers and consumers. The only solution was to fight the robber barons to the death. That is what our liberal friends do.

But what happens if, e.g., the exploited working stiffs from the 1930s eventually get jobs and houses and cars and turn into Republicans?

It was the Sixties liberals that found an answer to that. You abolish upward mobility and segregate your underclass into welfare ghettos; then you sic the Reverend Wrights and the imams on them to make them seethe with rage.

And when, periodically, the segregated underclass erupts in riots, you blame the racist white middle-class majority.

Christopher Chantrill ( is a frequent contributor to American Thinker. See his and also At he is blogging and writing An American Manifesto: Life After Liberalism. Get his Road to the Middle Class.