At last, a people’s revolt against the tyranny of environmentalism. Paris is burning. Not since 1968 has there been such heat and fury in the streetsThousands of ‘gilets jaunes’ stormed the capital at the weekend to rage against Emmanuel Macron and his treatment of them with aloof, technocratic disdain. And yet leftists in Britain and the US have been largely silent, or at least antsy, about this people’s revolt. The same people who got so excited about the staid, static Occupy movement a few years ago — which couldn’t even been arsed to march, never mind riot — seem struck dumb by the sight of tens of thousands of French people taking to the barricades against Macronism.
Yes, what is the reason for the murikans inability to violently protest? The freest country, the bravest people, the land of unending hedonism, all with piss-water in their veins? Maybe people can start storming McD's and Starbucks, to get a rise from the sacks of suet.
. Most strikingly this is a people’s rebellion against the onerous consequences of climate-change policy, against the politics of environmentalism and its tendency to punish the little people for daring to live relatively modern, fossil-fuelled lives. This is new. This is unprecedented. We are witnessing perhaps the first mass uprising against eco-elitism
The ‘gilet jaunes’ — or yellow-vests, after the hi-vis vests they wear — are in rebellion against Macron’s hikes in fuel tax. As part of his and the EU’s commitment to cutting carbon emissions, Macron is punishing the drivers of diesel vehicles in particular, raising the tax by 7.6 cents for every litre of diesel fuel. This will badly hit the pockets of those in rural France, who need to drive, and who can’t just hop on buses as deluded Macronists living in one of the fancy arrondissements of Paris have suggested they should. These people on the periphery of French society — truck drivers, provincial plumbers, builders, deliverymen, teachers, parents — have rocked up to the centre of French society in their tens of thousands three times in recent weeks, their message the same every time: ‘Enough is enough. Stop making our lives harder.’
For years we have lived in a climate of ‘You can’t say that’. You can’t criticise mass immigration — that’s xenophobia. You can’t oppose the EU — that’s Europhobia. You can’t raise concerns about radical Islam — that’s Islamophobia. You can’t agitate against climate-change policy — that’s climate-change denialism, on a par with Holocaust denialism, and anyone who dares to bristle against eco-orthodoxy deserves to be cast out of polite society. And yet now, in this populist moment, people are daring to say precisely these unsayable things. They’re standing up to the EU. They’re demanding that immigration become a democratic concern rather than something worked out for us by unaccountable bureaucrats in Brussels. And now they’re even grating against the hitherto unquestionable religious-style diktat that we must all drive less, shop less and do less in order to ‘save the planet’.
A sign of the time to come; but only for the people not for the sheep.