“Couldn’t have happened to a nicer guy”

Such was my friend’s reaction to the news that a member of the grateful public slapped Manny Macron in the face.

Manny, getting slapped down

Manny was doing his Tour de France, a meandering road at the end of which he hopes to secure another few years at the helm. A lot of flesh is being pressed, but some of the flesh strikes back.

Neither my friend nor I have much respect for the president of France (nor, truth be told, for any other modern politician). We see him as a typical EU spiv with narcissistic tendencies and an unquenchable thirst for power that he is incapable of using wisely.

Nor does Manny’s maniacal hatred of Britain do much to endear him to either of us. His isn’t that de rigueur Anglophobia that the French political classes often profess but seldom feel.

No, had Britain stayed in the EU, Manny wouldn’t mind us very much. As it is, he sees the British as traitors to that great idea, a denatured pan-European state run into the ground by the likes of Manny for the benefit of, well, the likes of Manny.

Still, neither my friend nor I felt sorry that the attacker had wielded only his open palm, not a knife or a gun. You see, we are both conservatives, a term that denotes not so much a political philosophy as style, manners, tastes and temperament.

That’s where conservatism starts, and the political or any other philosophy is strictly derivative, although of course not nonexistent. And attacking politicians we don’t like with knives, guns or even open hands is too uncivilised for us.

Such is the problem: civilised, conservative opposition to the modern order is limited to elderly gentlemen like us, who are too few and too isolated to constitute a viable political force. Our style, manners, tastes and temperament prevent us from screaming off soap boxes, rabble-rousing, organising riots and revolutions – or even slapping the likes of Manny for the sake of attracting attention to our cause.

The arrested attacker was shouting Montjoie, Saint-Denis! – that battle-cry of the medieval Kingdom of France was first mentioned in the Song of Roland. Also arrested was his friend sporting the fleur-de-lis and filming the incident.

Both the motto and the livery betoken royalist, which is to say impeccably conservative, credentials. But we can’t see those chaps as fellow conservatives. In all likelihood they are fascisoid radicals, a species occupying an altogether different rung in Lamarck’s ladder.

The situation is becoming increasingly reminiscent of Germany circa 1933. There were only two dynamic political forces at the time, the Nazis and the communists. Hence the Germans either had to choose one or the other, or watch from the sidelines with a sardonic smile on their faces – the option taken up by most conservatives.

The battle lines are drawn in different places now, but the similarities are obvious. Political power throughout the West is in the hands of an increasingly detached dirigiste elite, unerringly steering our civilisation to a gruesome end.

Real conservatism is for all intents and purposes extinct, and the only noticeable opposition comes from radical groups painted in various hues of brown or red. The more dirigiste the state contrived by the elite, the more it serves not the country but itself, the more violent the reaction – and France is as dirigiste as they come, in the West at any rate.

Whether the rebels scream “Black lives matter”, “Power to the people”, “Save the planet” or for that matter “Montjoie, Saint-Denis” is just a question of phonetics. They all claim they are offering a substantive alternative, but it’s one between the rock and the hard place.

My friend and I don’t want to be governed by either Manny, his attacker or the British (or American) equivalents. We’d like to see in government sage, prudent, courageous statesmen, and neither the self-serving spivs currently on offer nor their febrile attackers.

And we are dreaming of such statesmen as we watch a herd of pigs gracefully flying through the air. Alas, they are unlikely birds.

9 thoughts on ““Couldn’t have happened to a nicer guy””

  1. Encore une fois! There is nothing to be said but :Congratulations” for so accurately hitting the nail on the head!

    What can we Conservatives do?

    1. Unfortunately I don’t think there is anything we can do other than sitting on the sideline and watch the fall of our great civilisation. Am I a pessimist? Not at all but a realist. There are but a very few politicians anywhere with a conservative spine (and I do not mean a rubbery one) and with people so brainwashed, too few will vote them into power anyway. I am glad I am turning 70 soon and I will enjoy my last years to the fullest but I feel sorry for my children, grandchildren and future generations.

      1. I am a bit younger than you, but I see formerly conservative towns like Dallas and Houston circling the drain with woke leadership. Conservatives exhibit self-restraint and virtue and our Congress exhibits none of that with few exceptions. Growling masses shoving ballots in boxes demanding instant gratification is what’s left of our once great country.

  2. I really must proofread my stuff more carefully!

    Please read ” for : before ‘Congratulations’.

    With apologies!

  3. Increasingly, I find it hard to resist fatalism. It’s awfully difficult to see how things could be any other way. The fascisoid types defame the very thing they seek to preserve. They often scream “conservatives have conserved nothing!” and they have a point, it’s just that the reason nothing was conserved was because it was impossible, or so it seems to me.

  4. It seems from what I read above that a true conservative should stick to contemplation, with book in hand and a pipe in his mouth perhaps, as his civilization falls to pieces, for fear of violating, by any excessive action or word, the very ideal of his conservatism.
    My mind always reverts to the disasters of World War Two: What would the true good Conservative’s position have been on Hiroshima, Dresden, and Nagasaki? Can good men always avoid being scoundrels to some degree in the pursuit of the good?

    1. Christianity teaches that war is evil — unless it can prevent a greater evil. This is the light in which I would have considered those evil events. Did they prevent a greater evil? Possibly. Possibly not. But, like most things in life, this could be analysed dispassionately. As to acting only in an onlooking capacity, I struggle to see any acceptable options (slapping politicians doesn’t qualify). These used to exist, when most governments were conservative, and they enjoyed a wide constituency. That’s no longer the case. Personally, I take refuge in Seneca\s aphorism: “None of it can be helped, but all of it can be despised.”

  5. The incessant propaganda and brainwashing by the progressives in government and the media has been extremely successful. The fight against same-sex-marriage lasted a decade or two. Look how far we have fallen since losing that battle! Conservatives tend to grumble about such things to each other, they do not lead marches (or riots) down Main Street. The few who organize events such as public rosaries do so without much fanfare and with small crowds. Even my older brother, who I long considered the smartest person I have ever known, has succumbed. He has stated such things as “The Democrats convinced me with their words (a strange phrase for an educated man) that Trump is unfit for leadership on any level.” The man who pulled us out of the Paris Accords, got the coal and oil industries back to work, tried to protect the borders, attended and spoke at the Right to Life rally (the first president to do so) is “unfit for leadership on any level”? In his first week, President Biden had undone all that, including reinstituting worldwide funding for abortions. A true leader! Huzzah and hooray!

    My employer is among the wokest, being voted a great place to work for over 20 years straight by some society of sexual deviants. I am hoping to make it through another five years without getting fired for some common sense remark, and then retire in peace. But I do fear the future my children face.

  6. Same here, sadly. At 61 I am already aware that our freedoms are going and will be extinct in my lifetime. From the plandemic to the successful globalwarmongers (of which I think dovetail too conveniently) to the “Cashless” society so embraced by everyone, and the rise of identity politics, western civilisation is fighting battles on every front from within and without. I see little to be optimistic about.

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