The Dead End of Reparations
I don't know about you, but I am about ready to take the ruling-class enthusiasm for "reparations" and put it where the sun don't shine.
The current push for reparations, I assume, has occurred because Nikole Hannah-Jones' 1619 Project has jumped from the New York Times to the Hulu streaming service.
And, of course, all of a sudden, California has decided to empower its black politicos to decide how much reparation is enough. Don't know much about historee, but I think the Latinos of one-time "Alta California" might have a better claim to the loot.
But then, I thought, better check Google Ngram and Google Trends to see how the present Mass Formation Psychosis on reparations has arisen.
On Google Ngram, which is about books, "reparations" was going nowhere until a peak in the 1920s. Then it dropped away but shot up again in the 1940s. It is all about German reparations, the brilliant idea of the western powers to Make Germany Pay for World War One. But WWII reparations enthusiasm peaked in 1947. Reading the tea-leaves in books like American Occupation of Germany: Retreat to Victory by Edward N. Peterson, I get the feeling that our fearless leaders realized that, if post-Nazi Germany was going to be sent back to the Stone Age, we Yanks would have to feed it.
On Google Trends, which is about search, "reparations" was going nowhere until June 2019, the month of the virgin birth of the 1619 Project. Then it declined but shot up to a new peak in June 2020, right after the crucifixion of George Floyd. And now it is trending because of Gavin Newsom and the Hulu series.
Of course, to me, this fascination with "reparations" is just another confirmation of my idea that the left is a Great Reaction, a political lurch back to the primitive. "Revenge" and "Reparations" belong to stateless tribal societies where there is no legal system backed up by the state to enforce justice. How do tribal societies prevent escalation of blood feuds into general warfare? According to Francis Fukuyama in The Origins of Political Order, stateless tribes tried to resolve blood feuds with a culture of revenge, arbitration, and monetary damages -- called Wergeld by the Germanic tribes. But in our day, we have the glorious legal system and lawyers, backed up by government force, to assess damages and enforce payment without the intervention of the male relatives of the victim.
I want to say that "this is not that hard," but in fact it is hard. Americans do not learn about the history of law and the state and justice in public school, nor in college. If you want to educate yourself so you can write what I have written here, you have to read the books and ignore the union teachers and the woke professors and tread where cupcakes fear to tread, outside the Overton Window.
But why, you ask? Why, a century and a half after the abolition of slavery, and fifty years after the abolition of racial discrimination, why is the New York Times poisoning us with a reactionary movement for "reparations?" What is the point?
The point is that under the present regime of the Anointed, there comes a time when the Mascots fall away from a blind devotion to their masters. It happened with the working class, left by their Anointed rulers to die of despair; it is presently happening with TERF women who really don't like men in the women's bathroom. One fine day, the descendants of the African slaves may tumble to the truth that, to the exalted Anointed, they are just the Benighted in blackface. Meanwhile, our Anointed ruling class is doing its level best -- which admittedly is not that good -- to keep its black Mascots all riled up and voting 90 percent for Democrats.
(With Anointed, Benighted, and Mascots, I am here using the notion of economist Thomas Sowell in The Vision of the Anointed. Sowell, like Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas, is sometimes accused by the Best and Brightest of being an "Uncle Tom." Your mileage may vary.)
Okay. Now we are going to fly up into the heavens. Make sure your wings don't melt.
It seems to me that almost all ethnic groups in America have started out as stateless tribes in their ethnic ghettos. They lived outside the law, with gangs instead of police and courts. Today we see black gangbangers obsessed by "dissing;" thus a lot of the killings in the stateless black inner cities are really honor killings.
A truly Anointed ruling class would help blacks advance beyond their stateless culture of gangs and honor killings and baby mamas and reparations. But our rulers don't.
We know why. More important than a thriving American black middle class is maintaining the power of the Anointed educated ruling class.
Christopher Chantrill @chrischantrill runs the go-to site on US government finances, usgovernmentspending.com. Also get his American Manifesto and his Road to the Middle Class.
Image: Public Domain