France's End

Steven Mosher
By Joseph A. D'Agostino
PRI Weekly Briefing
11 November 2005
Vol. 7 / No. 44
Reproduced with Permission

Demographics is not a fashionable issue. Pundits and politicians prefer to discuss other aspects of social difference and reasons for social change such as economics and race. Most American news stories about and commentators on the recent riots in France have blamed a combination of high unemployment (economics) and discrimination (race) for the riots. They have suggested that more jobs, quotas, and government spending would solve France's problem with her young Muslim rebels. Unfortunately, another aspect (demographics) tells us that there is no practical solution to France's problem, and the radical Muslims are likely to win.

The importers of the Algerian insurrection certainly seem to have won this round, with French Prime Minister Dominique de Villepin promising more money for areas dominated by immigrants and their offspring and Interior Minister Nicolas Sarkozy forced to back off from the hard line he took when he called the rioters "scum." French authorities asked Muslim religious leaders to help end the violence, granting tacit legitimacy to the anti-Western imams. Regardless of the intrinsic wisdom of these decisions, the fact that they came in response to violence means they will encourage more violence. As Heywood Brown said, "Appeasers believe that if you keep on throwing steaks to a tiger, the tiger will become a vegetarian." These riots were organized, at least to a large extent, according to de Villepin and Sarkozy. The tigerish organizers of the riots have achieved a victory. Terrorism works.

So what is France to do? She has failed to create employment for many of her young people, whether French or foreign, due to her socialistic policies, while the French electorate continues to demand continued statism and unaffordable social welfare policies. Despite trying hard, she has failed to assimilate her immigrants and their children, and contrary to what one might think, the children and grandchildren of the initial immigrants tend to be more radical and anti-Western than the immigrants themselves. The trends are all in the wrong direction. And the self-destructing, cringing, appeasing, and degenerate Western European nation in which they live will never win the respect of these radical young men, who will demand more and more and more. I read that the French media are full of stunned incomprehension: Why are they rioting here, when France has been so steadfast in opposing the war in Iraq and in leading international opposition to the United States generally? Their craven lack of understanding of basic human psychology, the psychology of men not so effete as themselves, condemns them.

The sort of young men that France has nurtured in her bosom are very scary indeed, and sound worse than many inhabitants of our own urban ghettos. In the Autumn 2002 City Journal, Theodore Dalrymple described the vicious street loiterers he saw when he visited Paris' government-planned immigrant suburbs. "A kind of anti-society has grown up in thema population that derives the meaning of its life from the hatred it bears for the other, 'official,' society in France," he wrote. "This alienation, this gulf of mistrustgreater than any I have encountered anywhere else in the world, including in the black townships of South Africa during the apartheid yearsis written on the faces of the young men, most of them permanently unemployed, who hang out in the pocked and potholed open spaces between their logements. When you approach to speak to them, their immobile faces betray not a flicker of recognition of your shared humanity; they make no gesture to smooth social intercourse. If you are not one of them, you are against them."

The huge amounts of money that the French government has poured into these area has done nothing to improve mainstream France's image among these ghetto-dwellers, and never will. "Benevolence inflames the anger of the young men of the cities as much as repression, because their rage is inseparable from their being," said Dalrymple. "Ambulance men who take away a young man injured in an incident routinely find themselves surrounded by the man's 'friends,' and jostled, jeered at, and threatened. . . . Of course, they also expect him to be treated as well as anyone else, and in this expectation they reveal the bad faith, or at least ambivalence, of their stance toward the society around them. They are certainly not poor, at least by the standards of all previously existing societies: they are not hungry; they have cell phones, cars, and many other appurtenances of modernity; they are dressed fashionably  according to their own fashion  with a uniform disdain of bourgeois propriety and with gold chains round their necks."

Like all men reduced to useless dependence, they hate those who support them while being unable to throw off their sloth. Raising their standard of living without putting them to work will do nothing. "They enjoy a far higher standard of living (or consumption) than they would in the countries of their parents' or grandparents' origin, even if they labored there 14 hours a day to the maximum of their capacity," Dalrymple noted. "But this is not a cause of gratitudeon the contrary: they feel it as an insult or a wound, even as they take it for granted as their due. But like all human beings, they want the respect and approval of others, evenor rather especially  of the people who carelessly toss them the crumbs of Western prosperity. Emasculating dependence is never a happy state, and no dependence is more absolute, more total, than that of most of the inhabitants of the cits."

Yet the sloth of the native French is more debilitating, because though a people can survive the advanced degeneracy of its men, as many have, it cannot survive that of its women. If a people's women cease to bear and raise enough children, that people dies. If most of its women decide career, freedom, and pleasure are more important than hearth and family, that people dies. In no other area of life does the accumulation of individual decisions more profoundly affect society as a whole. Feminism kills.

Muslim women, in Europe and most other places, are relatively family- and child-oriented. Most Frenchwomen couldn't care less. Examining the birthrates for the two groups, the "French" French will be overwhelmed by their guests soon enough. France's overall birthrate of children per woman is about 1.9, a little less than the replacement rate. The French government forbids the collection of statistics by race or religion (it's one nation, they say), but demographic experts think that the mostly Muslim immigrant population's birthrate is an astonishing twice that of the native population, possibly higherand more immigrants flood into France every day, where up to 10% of the population is already Muslim. Some folks think France will be 40% Muslim by 2050, perhaps sooner.

Though French unemployment may be high now, someone will have to work to support native France's aging population, which refuses to bear the next generations itself. The plan was to have the immigrants do it. Maybe the plan needs revision.

Even with immigration, the proportion of French people over 65, which was 16% in 2000, is projected to hit 27% in 2050, with all the attendant increases in the costs of already-bankrupt social security and health care systems. The proportion over 80 will go from 4% to 11%. At the same time, the proportion of people entering the workforce will shrink. It's unsustainable.

I could discuss all the other things I've learned about France recently from reliable sources: the six-fold increase in crime in the last few decades, the cultural acceptance of gang rape in immigrant neighborhoods, the foreign (often Saudi) funding of nearly all mosques in France, the rapidly growing influence of radical Islam among France's Muslims, and the fact that over half of France's prison population is of immigrant stock. There is also a lot of evidence to support the thesis that the native French have denigrated their guests: Walled them off in vast grim, modern housing projects; bombarded them with degenerate popular culture just as they were cut off from their original cultures; provided welfare rather than employment; and left their spiritual needs to be tended almost exclusively by Muslim firebrands with no competition from Christian missionaries.

Algeria was once a department of France. One day, France may be a province of Algeria. Demographics will likely make the difference.