Can I have freedom fries with that?

The French hate everybody and everybody hates them.  What I admire about them, though, is that they are just about the only ones in the West who have the balls to do something about their hatred.  All we do here in the U.S. is listen to right-wing talk-radio shows, or whine at each other, or blog (hand in air here for the last one).

I read some news reports yesterday about disgruntled French Caterpillar workers holding executives hostage in retaliation for threatened layoffs.  Can you imagine a group of workers in the U.S. doing that?  No.  Generally here, it’s some lone wolf who “goes postal” long after he has been lost his job.  That’s not only more lethal, it’s dumber.  It gives the media plenty of excuses to pass the “lone wolf” off as being a psycho — which is always the case, anyway.  And then the lone wolf commits suicide or gets shot to death.

At least it gives the media a chance to get something right for a change, but it doesn’t tackle the actual problem.

The French, on the other hand, are tackling the actual problem.  Or rather, taking it hostage.  Similar situation here in the U.S.?  Again, one of seven things happens:

(1) As I said, the lone-wolf scenario

(2) The media interview the first laid-off illegal alien they can find

(3) All the laid-off workers get together in a bar and get drunk

(4) The Fat Man tells everybody who will listen that this is capitalism and there is nothing wrong, and hints that it says so in the Constitution.  Even if they are among the laid-off workers, his true believers bow down before him believing that Jesus Christ wrote the Constitution (which they have never actually read), and that the Fat Man has a direct line to J.C.   

(5) The labor unions whine about the plight of illegal aliens.

(6) The workers gather outside the door of the company and look sad.  The media take pictures of them looking sad.  So much the better if Jesse Jackson or some other such person shows up (can’t miss a photo op!) and blathers left-wingnut, probably reverse-racist spiel while the workers stand around looking sad.

(7) Maybe one executive gets fired for “poor decision-making,” gets a loaded severance package and buys a mansion in Bermuda.

Ah, viva la France!  Here, we only do terrible things to our bosses in fantasy movies like “9 to 5,” (which was released way back in 1980, for crying out loud).  In France, they do this stuff for real.

I wish the workers well, although I doubt there will be a good outcome for them.  As for the Caterpillar execs?  They’ll probably all get fat raises (hazard pay, you know) and round-the-clock personal bodyguards out of the deal.

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