The last 7 days have been packed for me, both from an activity standpoint and from a metaphorical one as well. A week ago I was hosting the Johnson County Tea Party Texans Rally to November. It was an event underscoring just how important voting is to secure our freedoms. While the rains came and we started seeing animals pairing up in twos, the event turned out to be great with hard-core patriots in attendance and a list of speakers that would put any conservative rally to shame. I am glad I was a part of it.
A week later and I am literally on the other side of the globe in Dubai, UAE on business. Part of my journey involved a 5 hour layover in Paris at DeGaul International Airport. When I originally knew about the layover, I had visions of visiting Paris for some quick sight seeing, grab a few goodies for the family, etc. However, a 9 hour flight coming into Paris after a 2 hour flight from DFW to Atlanta that had a 2 hour layover there dampened that spirit. Air France also recommended “no touring” for layover guests due to current “political tensions” in Paris. You have to be kidding? Frenchi upset!?
Well, apparently Frenchi is mad and getting madder. Now I know for most of us, happenings in France are not worth the synapses firing in your head to read this blog. We all remember the political blow up over France’s stand on Iraq.
Ahh, it was fun to bash Frenchi.
The reality is that the US and France have more ties than we sometimes wish to admit. Without French influence, supplies and aid, we may never have gained our independence from Britain and King George. Our Lady the Statue of Liberty was a gift from the French that has stood for freedom for over 234 years. Our ties to France enabled the sacrifice Americans gave when storming the beaches at Normandy and freeing Paris in WWII. We may have some generational issues and differences of opinion, but our two nations still have influence on the other.
I guess my Texas drawl lures conservatives from all walks of life, like flies to a bug zapper. My business partner & I were discussing the wonderful back pain from the trip when no less than 5 native Frenchis approached me asking me if I was from the US. After getting past some basic security issues to be sure I was not about to be blown up, I started talking to France’s native sons and daughters. The crowd grew to over 30 in less than 10 minutes and political opinions were being served up piping hot.
There are riots in Paris right now over raising the retirement age from 60 & 65 to 62 &67. I asked my group how they felt about it and all replied that they had no issue with the creep in age. What was barking up most of France was a stark reality that even with the bump in age, there is no money to fund the retirements the government has committed to. Nothing short of skyrocketing taxes. That is what they are mad at. I asked the income tax rate and was given numbers from 40% in personal taxes. However, increases would be levied on personal and real property, goods & services, etc. They feel the government has taken a good chunk of their money and has nothing to show for it. Does this sound familiar?
We talked about individual freedoms as well. I have been a fan of dirt bikes for years. So are the French it seems. Unfortunately, their environmental whackos have gotten the best of them in the laws books. France has passed laws where no cross-country or motocross events can be held outdoors on public or government lands – only private acreage. This is due to the so-called noise and air pollution caused at events. One man told me that a recent event inside a dome was cancelled by the Green Police for producing too much carbon in one place.
Now all of this is very relevent to the happenings stateside. When I went to Dover, London, and Calais in 2007 I saw what I had heard from liberals in their rants for change the US – the downsizing of America in more ways than one. Smaller families, cars, homes, consumer goods – you name it. Oh and no guns. This is the current siege Europe is under and the liberals want to make the USA look and feel just like it. We have seen this agenda in what Barry and the Obamanites want in the US.
Here is the funny part – Europe is sick of the liberal spending, lies, and encroachment to their liberties. Apparently the French have had it and are ready to get back to lower taxes, more individual freedoms, and being more responsible for themselves. Europe is watching the American Mid Terms with great detail, as the “Obama Agenda” was brought up by many there in the airport. Several comments of “He is unpopular, no” were blurted out in the conversation. Of course, I shared the NSA edited version for public airways opinion I have of Barry O. The roar of laughter was so much airport security checked up on us. That was cool.
I realize this does not represent all of France, but it was surprising and refreshing to have such a large conservative sampling in an airport talking politics. Maybe Frenchi is gaining posture to be a true ally once again.
They did have some cool ideas once upon a time……….