At a recent barbecue I talked to a couple of Europeans, one from France and one from Romania. They’re living in Massachusetts now. Would they want to return to live in Europe? “No,” said the Romanian. “It is too violent.” The French woman agreed.
How was that possible? Doesn’t the U.S. have a near-monopoly on violence, at least if we are to believe our media? The answer was “no.” They both thought that their countries were ripe for essentially a civil war between the native Christian population (of which they had been part) and the immigrant Muslim population. They thought that large parts of their respective countries were already unsafe for non-Muslims and that the problems would become dramatically worse in the near future.
They also appreciated America’s service-oriented economy in which the customers usually is a priority. “You think that the French hate Americans because of the way you get treated in shops,” said the former Parisienne, “but they treat us the same.”
They considered the cost of living in Europe to be dramatically higher than the U.S., even more than could be explained by the VAT (consumption tax). “I have a friend who is a nurse and her husband is an architect,” said the French woman. “They live just above what we would consider the poverty line.”
What was good about Europe? “The vacations, the ability to relax and enjoy life, the social contacts.”
- “It’s Time for Sweden to Admit Explosions Are a National Emergency” (Quillette): “The use of explosives in the Nordic country is now at a level that is unique in the world for a state not at war, according to police.”