The Point of Life

What is best in life? Obviously, it is to crush your enemies. See them driven before you and hear the lamentations of their women. Alternatively, according to John Derbyshire, “The greatest joy for a man is to defeat his enemies, to drive them before him, to take from them all they possess, to see those they love in tears, to ride their horses, and to hold their wives and daughters in his arms.”

I’m kidding, sort of, but figuring out what is the point, the goal of life, is not an unimportant topic. Libertarians tell us the point of life is to be ground up into dog food because that’s efficient. Liberals tell us the point of life is the struggle. A meaningful life is one spent struggling against the natural order. Buckley Conservatives no longer contemplate this question as it could offend the Left.

One reason our politics are a dumpster fire in the West is no one bothers to ask, “to what end?” Read the stories about the Muslim invasion of Europe, for example, and you never see anyone asking the current non-Muslim rulers why they are doing these things. What’s the point? How does this benefit Europeans? There’s never a reason given. It’s as if there is no point. They are just killing time until something else comes along.

The void of pointlessness has been filled by the cult of economics, who claim the point of man’s existence is to make really cool looking pivot tables. Make Excel happy and utopia arrives. The debate here over trade was tinged with that vibe. Trade with Mexico is good because Walmart has cheap crap. This assumes that life in America was a hellhole in 1985, because we had less cheap crap. Does anyone’s plan for their life include “get more cheap crap” under the list of life goals?

It’s why arguments for or against trade and immigration based on math miss the point. These are not math problems. There’s no uniformly right answer. The math can help inform opinion, but ultimately social policy is about how people choose to live. The point of life for the Amish is going to be different than for Scots-Irish woodsmen in West Virginia. You see that here in this story about a small Nebraska town.

Half-ton pickup trucks crowd the curb outside the One Horse Saloon, a neon Coors Light sign in the window and rib-eye steaks on the menu, but otherwise Nickerson, Nebraska, is nearly silent on a spring evening, with only rumbling freight trains interrupting bird songs.

Regional economic development officials thought it was the perfect spot for a chicken processing plant that would liven up the 400-person town with 1,100 jobs, more than it had ever seen. When plans leaked out, though, there was no celebration, only furious opposition that culminated in residents packing the fire hall to complain the roads couldn’t handle the truck traffic, the stench from the plant would be unbearable and immigrants and out-of-towners would flood the area, overwhelming schools and changing the town’s character.

“Everyone was against it,” said Jackie Ladd, who has lived there for more than 30 years. “How many jobs would it mean for people here? Not many.”

The village board unanimously voted against the proposed $300 million plant, and two weeks later, the company said they’d take their plant — and money — elsewhere.

Deep-rooted, rural agricultural communities around the U.S. are seeking economic investments to keep from shedding residents, but those very places face trade-offs that increasing numbers of those who oppose meat processing plants say threaten to burden their way of life and bring in outsiders.

“Maybe it’s just an issue of the times in which we live in which so many people want certain things but they don’t want the inconveniences that go with them,” said Chris Young, executive director of the American Association of Meat Processors.

The default assumption here and everywhere in the mass media is that the point of life is economic growth. It’s as if there can be only two modes. One is pedal to the metal, sacrifice everything for economic growth, even if that means erasing the entire culture. The other mode is North Korea style isolationism and backwardness, where people are paranoid of outsiders and refuse to embrace modernity.

Of course, the real issue here is “who? whom?”

Nickerson fought against Georgia-based Lincoln Premium Poultry, which wanted to process 1.6 million chickens a week for warehouse chain Costco. It was a similar story in Turlock, California, which turned down a hog-processing plant last fall, and Port Arthur, Texas, where residents last week stopped a meat processing plant. There also were complaints this month about a huge hog processing plant planned in Mason City, Iowa, but the project has moved ahead.

The Nickerson plant would have helped area farmers, who mostly grow corn and soybeans, start up poultry operations and buy locally grown grain for feed, said Willow Holliback, who lives 40 miles away and heads an agriculture group that backed the proposal.

“When farmers are doing well, the towns are doing well,” she said.

The question of who would work the tough jobs was at the forefront of the debate, though many were adamant they aren’t anti-immigrant. Opposition leader Randy Ruppert even announced: “This is not about race. This is not about religion.”

Thanks to 50 years of Buckley Conservatism, standing up for you own is assumed to be a hate crime so everyone is conditioned to volunteer that they are not a racist or Christian. I look forward to the day when a white Christian can once again be proud of civilization.

But both were raised at the raucous April 4 meeting where the local board rejected the plant. One speaker said he’d toured a chicken processing plant elsewhere and felt nervous because most of the workers were minorities.

More overtly, John Wiegert, from nearby Fremont where two meat processors employ many immigrants, questioned whether Nickerson’s plant would attract legal immigrants from Somalia— more than 1,000 of whom have moved to other Nebraska cities for similar jobs, along with people from Mexico, Central America and Southeast Asia.

“Being a Christian, I don’t want Somalis in here,” Wiegert, who has led efforts to deny rental housing to immigrants in the country illegally, told the crowd. “They’re of Muslim descent. I’m worried about the type of people this is going to attract.”

Others pointed out that, given Nebraska’s unemployment rate is among the nation’s lowest near 3 percent, few local residents would accept the entry-level jobs. While the projected wage of $13 to $17 an hour was above the region’s current median wage for production workers, opponents argued meat processors generally have high turnover.

This really is the crux of the matter. The “American” company building these plants is about as American as the People’s Liberation Army of China. The owners of that company have no allegiance to America or Americans. The proof of that is their overwhelming desire to import Somalis as workers in their plants. To them, Nebraska may as well be a dead planet they can mine for its resources. America means nothing to them.

That’s the core of the new way we have to view the world. There’s us and them. The overclass gathering for their festival in Vegas should understand that the rest of us owe them nothing. They are on their own. It would be nice if the overclass was thankful and patriotic, dedicated to protecting the society that made their life possible. That’s not the case. They are just a collection of buccaneers with no loyalty to anyone. We have to return the favor.

21 thoughts on “The Point of Life

  1. I was thinking along some similar lines the other day, which essentially is: why do we have to have diversity? Who thought it a good idea?

    It seems to me that we have arrived at a point to the complete bewilderment of ordinary people, in which the ruling elite have decided diversity is great (without seemingly having thought about what it means in reality and certainly not by putting forward any arguments *before* diversity was imposed. Making noises *after* doing it is not the same thing) and left the rest us in the potential ‘hate position’ of not wanting it but likely to be in trouble should you oppose the whole idea.

    So we have diversity. Job done. Yet what do we get after that? Someone shouting for “more diversity” because apparently all the diversity we have had hasn’t been enough. Having for example lots of muslims on our streets (a lot of northern and midland cities in England are already finding have more than they can cope with) hasn’t made anyone happy, but worse of all it hasn’t even made the the ones who dreamed up the bizarre idea in the first place because they want more and more.

    A distant relative of mine who lives very well in London wants to see more diversity, though (whisper it) not on his own pleasant street. He would be happy for, say, Rotherham to be more diverse. Providing of course he doesn’t have to visit the place.

  2. When I was a young adventurous man I drove across this vast land to end up in Southern California, the beach communities. Sun, water young women by the score paradise to a young mid-western buck. Walking along a secluded road I saw a young boy about 8 or maybe 9 years old. I asked about a trail that leads down to a surf spot known only to the locals. He turned to me and replied sharply “I know, but I won’t tell you!” turned around just as sharply and walked away. I was shocked that a youngster would talk to an older person like that and also shocked he wouldn’t give out directions. That was how I learned the concept “LOCALS ONLY” Outsiders go to hell and stay there we don’t want you or your money no thank-you very much. I’ve never forgotten that and I fully understand his reply.

  3. “The great line of demarcation in modern politics, Eric Voegelin used to point out, is not a division between liberals on one side and totalitarians on the other. No, on one side of that line are all those men and women who fancy that the temporal order is the only order, and that material needs are their only needs, and that they may do as they like with the human patrimony. On the other side of that line are all those people who recognize an enduring moral order in the universe, a constant human nature, and high duties toward the order spiritual and the order temporal.”

  4. Karl, God forbid that hard labor be met with hard compensation. I live in a part of the country far from the Mexican border, the farms are family owned not the plantations like they have in California. White people happily do the work. some fucker trying to get rich destroying the family farmer by importing helot labor to new found plantations has no sympathy from me. Karl why do you feel the need to belch out support for them? and why do Germans get such pleasure out waving their fingers in states of smug stupidity I shall never know. It’s breed into them though, they do it on both sides of the Atlantic.

  5. An engineering colleague of mine had a contract with a farm in the California central valley to expand their vegetable processing plant. It was interesting to note that inside the plant, it was predominantly white engineers, welders and pipe fitters (tradesmen) who were doing the upgrades. But when harvesting time came it was all Mexican workers in the fields or processing lines; no whites or blacks showed up for those jobs. Americans (white or black) won’t lower themselves to doing that sort of work these days, certainly no Millennials. Oddly enough, this is same work their Grandfathers came looking for during the Depression and Great Dustbowl of the early 1930’s.

    Here in Europe we’re running into a similar problem. Too many young people have gotten into college and now are no longer interested in the trades or labor; running milling machines, welding and definitely not digging ditches or highway construction. That’s what Poles, Russians, Romanians and Turks are for. As our welfare roles increase, no one is asking these people to actually contribute anything by working for their handouts. Instead we’re told we have to bring in more foreigners.

    We have lots of work for people. There’s just no incentive for them to do it.

    • “no whites or blacks showed up for those jobs. Americans (white or black) won’t lower themselves to doing that sort of work these days, certainly no Millennials.”

      Son of a bitch, I’m sick of hearing this kind of bullshit. How can you know this? When the brown people you let in over the border are desperate for ANY work at ANY wage, and (in the case of illegals) have no recourse to defend their interests legally because they are here illegally, of course they are going to displace the local workforce. Kick out the illegals, secure the borders, and then let’s see what happens. I guarantee you it will be one of three outcomes: (1) wages will rise sufficiently to attract the local workforce; (2) the jobs will be automated; or (3) the product in question will stop being offered because no one wants to buy it at the higher price, which has a side benefit of bankrupting the scum who hire foreigners in the first place. All of these outcomes are obviously superior to our existing arrangements.

      • @ BB – they weren’t illegal workers, they’re migrant workers. There is a rather large coordinated group of Mexican-Americans who organize and manage these workers and surprisingly enough, the workers are all legal. Farmers won’t risk hiring illegals and this ensures the same workers that come every year get the jobs. The Canadians do something similar – they bring their combines (harvesters) down from Canada and harvest wheat starting in the north and driving south towards North Texas. Evidently it’s been going on for years. Nothing new.

        • I don’t give a shit whether they are legal or illegal, they are foreigners who don’t belong in this country. As a German, I’m surprised I have to lecture you on the obvious perils of “guest workers”. They are the camel’s nose under the tent that lead to the breakdown of borders and the breakdown of society. Either raise the wage, automate the job, or go bankrupt and get out of the fucking business.

          • Are you also referring to the Canadians as “foreigners who don’t belong in this country?” I suspect there are a number of American farmers who heavily depend on these services who ultimately contribute in a positive way to the survival of the average American farmer. Are you suggesting these farmers, who can’t find local workers, should go out of business rather than hire people who are willing to do the work?

          • “Are you suggesting these farmers, who can’t find local workers, should go out of business rather than hire people who are willing to do the work?”

            That is precisely what I am suggesting.

  6. “To them, Nebraska may as well be a dead planet they can mine for its resources.”
    Dead planet? Don’t be silly. Who’s gonna’ shovel the dirt?
    SEE: “They Live-John Carpenter” Also see: DeBeers/Rhodes.

  7. On the one hand, I often think a return to universal conscription would solve a lot of this problem. Two years spent cheek-by-jowl down in the motor pool with Billy Bob would burst a lot of bubbles pretty fast (which also means Billy Bob has some stories to tell if the bubble gets rebuilt). On the other hand, our culture has been preaching this homo economicus stuff for a long time, to the point where my students simply don’t grok the concept of just not buying something. They look at me like I’m an alien when I tell them “no, I don’t want the iPhone 12; if you gave it to me as a gift, I’d return it for store credit, and barring that, I’d give the damn thing away.” You’re not allowed to make that kind of decision these days.

    • Germany did away with military and social conscription in 2010-2011. Males had the choice of either military service or perform social services in their local community; working in old age homes, assisting with mentally disabled or the physically handicapped, etc. Young men were paid about 400€/month and our society benefitted from what they contributed. Unfortunately, both services were eliminated to save money. Personally, I would like to see it brought back and anyone who immigrates here has to do at least 2-years of service as part of their requirement for citizenship.

      • Agreed. I’d be ok with this, or even something like the odious “Teach” for America (=Propagandize for America) if it were conscripted. I’d be fine with just about anything, provided that a) there’s a good chance a plumber from the middle of nowhere is your platoon sergeant (or functional equivalent) and there were NO exemptions for college attendance, status, etc. If Harvard boys had to spend a few weeks in foxholes with Billy Bob and D’Shawn, there’d be no more “Harvard boys” (D’Shawn and Billy Bob would benefit, too).

  8. I went back to my great grandfather’s home town not too long ago. (He bought the farm in WW1 and the local VFW post is named for him.). I was stunned how folks had really turned their backs on the global economy. It was almost impossible to find a store that would take credit cards and chain businesses were vanishingly rare. The town I’m living in right now seems to be on a cusp. Out of state chain businesses are not doing well and quite a few have shut down.

    I saw one of those “no farms, no food” bumper stickers the other day. It should really read, “no justice, no food.”

  9. From what I have read about those chicken farmers tied to those slaughterhouses they are little more than slaves to them. They can only sell to the massa for the price massa sets. They lose money on the birds, well too bad. At least as a grain farmer they can sell to

    • That’s the way it works. Grain is much easier to transport world wide to market than live chickens.

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