culture

Centrifugal forces

A little over a year ago we put up a post about a cultural paradigm shift that was based on a piece called "Nobody Gets Married Anymore, Mister."  Ultimately, it was about personal responsibility.

In this month's American Spectator is an article about a book by Charles Murray, Coming Apart, that sounds as though it could be a companion piece. Some highlights:

...Whatever the causes, the social disintegration that once seemed to apply only to African Americans has now engulfed blue-collar, white working-class communities as well. Men are dropping out of the workforce, single motherhood has risen to nearly 50 percent, crime has skyrocketed, religious faith is declining, and the chances for upward mobility are rapidly diminishing. As Murray concludes: "The absolute level [of social cohesion] is so low that it calls into question the viability of white working-class communities as a place for socializing the next generation."
 
Murray identifies what he calls the "founding virtues"—marriage, industriousness, honesty, and religiosity—that were once shared by all Americans and held us together in a common culture...
However, as we've probably all noticed, people no longer seem to find the words "I'm from the government and I'm here to help" nearly as terrifying as they once did. And as the article's author, William Tucker, points out, "There in a nutshell is the reason why white working-class neighborhoods...once so strong" are no longer.
 
In his book, Murray contrasts the cultural disintegration among the white working class with what has happened among the "New Elite"—who in the course of becoming the very antithesis of whites in lower socio-economic strata "have insulated themselves to the point where they know very little about the rest of America."
 
But our book reviewer, Tucker, notes that in his analysis of the New Elite, Murray fails to look at what Tucker calls "the adopted religion of the educated class"—environmentalism:
Nothing expressed more completely the credo of the New Elite than the conviction that our very existence offends Mother Nature, that we are ruining the earth by using fossil fuels, and that Industrial America is something we should all be willing to leave behind. Where do people without a college education fit into this society? Competition from China and India has played a part in hollowing out America, but an equally important factor has been the near impossibility of building any kind of industrial facility in the United States anymore. No one has built an oil refinery in this country for thirty years. As late as 1980 there were two auto manufacturing plants within 25 miles of New York City, in Tarrytown, New York, and Mahwah, New Jersey. Today you'd have trouble opening a dry cleaning store inside that perimeter. Environmental regulations have made it a seven-to-ten-year ordeal to build any manufacturing plant in the U.S., and the burden of proof is always on the provider. Just look at the Keystone pipeline.
Sound familiar?
 
Fascinating stuff.  Read the whole thing.
 

The reason for the decline and fall of Western civilization...

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...unintentionally made clear in this little video. Unless you're a masochist—like the betas in this video—you may not make it through the whole thing.

Beta male (n.):  An unremarkable, careful man who avoids risk and confrontation. Beta males lack the physical presence, charisma and confidence of the Alpha male.

That video has been all over the internet in the last few weeks, but here are some of the best comments. The blog is a subset of NewsRealBlog called TWSS.  I'm with you, Lori:

Thanks bunches, “feminists”. You may have claimed to need men like a fish needs a bicycle, but some women actually, you know, like men. And want actual men, not sniveling, pathetic whiners who invent even unconscious wrongs with which to further the false, permanently aggrieved, ‘women are perpetual victims’ line. A man who goes through life with life gurus and Yanni-ish flute music and fancy womb envy and such?

Do not want.

Day of the unborn child

Growing up in St. Gabriel parish and the parish school, I remember March 24th, the archangel's traditional feast day, as being a big deal. And it was no accident that his feast day was observed on the day before the feast of the Annunciation, March 25th, which celebrates the angel Gabriel's appearance to the Virgin Mary (Luke 1:26-38), his announcement that the Blessed Virgin had been chosen to be the Mother of Our Lord, and Mary's fiat—her willing acceptance of God's holy plan. And how did folks back in the seventh century arrive at March 25th as the date to mark the Annunciation? Well, it's nine months before the feast of Christmas.

Some of this stuff has fallen by the cultural wayside even within the Catholic Church.  For instance, St. Gabe, as we always referred to him at our school, no longer has his own feast day, but is instead lumped together with his brother archangels Michael and Raphael for a joint feast day on September 29th. And I'm not aware of much emphasis any more on the Annunciation as a solemnity, i.e., a principal holy day in the Catholic liturgical calendar.

But in some places at least, March 25th is celebrated—as the Day of the Unborn Child.

 

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