Richard Fernandez @ The Belmont Club:
Lord Mandelson, a pro-EU British politician, warned the European project could unravel if the poverty caused by the economic crisis spreads throughout the zone. “Now this goes to the heart of the EU’s political legitimacy because whether you are from an austerity member state or a bailout country, you are likely to be dissatisfied for a long time to come with the economic state of Europe and the price you are paying for Europe’s indebtedness and its relative failure to generate the wealth it needs to pay for its high standard of living.”
What unites the disparate classes and nationalities of the continent is money. The deal was ‘sign on to the EU and win a prize’. But the prizes have been running short lately. That means the class struggle is back. And this time the divide can no longer be portrayed as exclusively running between the capitalists and the workers. Super-sized bureaucracies have created a new division: between the the guys who spend the budget and the great unwashed whose taxes pay the budget.
The new divide is contaminating everything even in America. After the massacre of school children in Connecticut was being used to illustrate the dangers of the Second Amendment, a curious thing happened. It began to morph, unbidden, into a class struggle issue.
It may have started when Piers Morgan mocked a guest on his talk show as “an unbelievably stupid man” for disagreeing with him on the subject of gun control. However, his British accent worked its subliminally upper-class magic in American minds. Through this filter, Morgan didn’t come across as just another dude disagreeing on the subject of the Second Amendment on CNN but the high and mighty Lord Banastre Tarleton riding roughshod over some homesteaders in the New World. The thing about the Voice of Command is that you have to know when to use it. Morgan didn’t.
It led to a petition for his deportation which evoked a hilarious counterpetition from Britain saying that after spending so much effort getting rid of him they didn’t want him back. Then David Gregory pulled his now infamous high capacity magazine stunt on national TV. He brandished a 30-round capacity magazine on his show to illustrate how illegal it was — after the DC cops told his producers he couldn’t do it. When asked how the cops could tolerate a direct challenge the sheepish answer was: it’s David Gregory and besides, he wasn’t actually going to shoot anybody. He succeeded in reminding everyone, as Mark Steyn put it that “laws are for little people — and not for David Gregory”.