A 93 year old publishes a book that is a runaway success in France:
Political essay by 93-year-old tops Christmas bestseller list in France: Hessel’s book argues that French people should re-embrace the values of the French resistance, which have been lost, which was driven by indignation, and French people need to get outraged again. “This is an appeal to citizens, young and old, to take responsibility for the things in our society that don’t work,” he said. “I wish every one of you to find your own reason for indignation. It’s precious.”
The ornery Frenchman needs to rise up. I think there will be a lot of that going on in the Western world, irrespective of the writings of Mr Hessel. But if they are driven by the same concerns as Hessel, then they will end up sorely disappointed with what they create:
Hessel’s reasons for personal outrage include the growing gap between the very rich and the very poor, France’s shocking treatment of its illegal immigrants, the need to re-establish a free press, protecting the environment, the plight of Palestinians and the importance of protecting the French welfare system. He calls for peaceful and non-violent insurrection.
Socialisms time in the sun may not be done, but France and the rest of the West needs to live within their means. This means creating more means or reducing expenditures. If you want a generous welfare system then you somehow have to keep people creating more means. Easier said than done.