My Own Observation of the Proletarianization of America

Mindweapon described how other countries work students hard to get the best out of them for the benefit of their nations, and how the US doesn’t. Beyond my own analysis of why non-European countries and European countries behave this way respectively, I would like to talk about the change in America as I have seen it in my lifetime.

My parents both came from Catholic families in industrial cities. Their attitude toward life was that it was very important to be educated, and to be a polite, cooperative person who treated others well. In the old days being an educated and courteous person would lead to an office job, a much better way to make a living than being a factory worker making low wages under dangerous conditions. They believed that it was important to be kind to poor working people without educations, because while they may be roughly behaved they had it hard and did not have access to civilizing influences. They were of course New Deal liberals.

I grew up in southern California in the 60’s and 70’s, first in a small town where my father worked as a government scientist, and later in a lower middle-class/working class suburb where he worked as a computer programmer. Their view of life was not too challenged in the small town. Most people we knew were scientists and engineers and their families. The lower-class whites were well-behaved.

The suburb we moved to later was a great deal different. Our neighbors were less educated than my parents, and generally rude, nasty people, but they had more money. My parents struggled but our neighbors had all kinds of cars, boats, RVs, off-road motorcycles, and toys like that. Part of it was debt, but a lot of it was that they were simply enjoying the post-war prosperity that made blue collar work highly paid. These people despised education and courtesy, but why would they respect them? They were doing better than people like my parents who they probably regarded as suckers.

There is an interesting episode of “Mad Men” where Don Draper is in Los Angeles and goes to visit the widow of the man whose identity he stole. She lives in a nice house by the beach, and he walks down the street and sees a couple guys working on a hot rod. He starts talking to them about it- showing what Half Sigma would call a prole interest in cars- and introduces himself as Dick Whitman, his true identity. He asks them about jobs in the area, and he seems to be thinking about the idea of a comfortable life without pretense as Dick Whitman, the poor farmer’s son. In that era, Dick might have gone to college on the GI Bill (had he survived Korea) and become a man like Don Draper, or he might have just moved to LA and got a job in an aircraft factory. In times past getting an education would have been the far better choice, but Don/Dick’s ambivalence shows that in the 50’s and 60’s it was maybe a tossup. 30,000 people used to work at McDonnell Douglas in Long Beach, all making good money and living nice suburban lives. Not making as much money as Don Draper, and not drinking on the job and screwing secretaries, but living easily and without pretense.

And yet learning still had prestige back then. I remember being surprised when an older guy told me that if you weren’t a scientist in the 60’s, you weren’t shit. We think of the 60’s as free love and hippies, but for most of the country it was still high-tech manufacturing and the space program. A lot of people were stupid and proud of it, but plenty were still smart.

That changed, though. In 1970 my dad got laid off from his government job. The government decided spending money on science wasn’t important any more, black people needed the money. People started to make money in real estate and consumer businesses, and getting a science or technical education seemed like a waste of time. Being a hustler of whatever, a guy looking out for himself, became the model of success.

People had been given the option of being dumb, but still comfortable, and took it. Before long the comfortable part was gone. LA used to have all kinds of factories- aircraft, the countless machine shops that supported the aircraft factories, a GM plant, a huge Anheuser-Busch brewery, a tire factory. All are gone now.

The country has supposedly gone “high tech” since then, but this is a lie. All the science for computer hardware was done in the 60’s. All they do now is shrink the stuff and make programs for it. Programming is thought of as a sophisticated activity, like science and engineering, but this is a lie also. I think a big part of my father’s disappointment was that he thought being a programmer would be like being a scientist, and he found himself among people who were much less sophisticated and intelligent than himself. Programmers are moderately bright problem-solvers, and the work can be done by Indians anyway, so it provides little opportunity for intelligent white people.

Americans tend to think of a middle-class lifestyle as their birthright. For a while any shithead could make a good living, but those times are long past. The shithead lifestyle has to go. Whites must return to quality learning, quality thinking, and quality behavior. This won’t guarantee prosperity- that is hard to come by these days for anybody- but it will provide dignity and self-respect, which a jet ski can’t.

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About thrasymachus33308

I like fast cars, fast women and southern-fried rock. I have an ongoing beef with George Orwell. I take my name from a character in Plato's "Republic" who was exasperated with the kind of turgid BS that passed for deep thought and political discourse in that time and place, just as I am today. The character, whose name means "fierce fighter" was based on a real person but nobody knows for sure what his actual political beliefs were. I take my pseudonym from a character in an Adam Sandler song who was a obnoxious jerk who pissed off everybody.
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17 Responses to My Own Observation of the Proletarianization of America

  1. mindweapon says:

    Excellent post sir! You are so right about the “shithead lifestyle!” Reblogging this!

    • Thras-Fan says:

      Dude, I hate the shithead lifestyle. They think they don;t need to know anything if they make more the 50 Grand a year. They love to scorn learning, unless it is in a capitalistic vein a la “what are you gonna do with that!”

  2. mindweapon says:

    You should listen to the audio play by James Howard Kunstler, “Big Slide” he mentions jet skis and shithead lifestyle:

    http://kunstlercast.com/shows/kunstlercast_97_big_slide_act_1.html

    http://kunstlercast.com/shows/kunstlercast_98_big_slide_acts_2_3.html

  3. spandrell says:

    “Whites must return to quality learning, quality thinking, and quality behavior”

    You’ve been around long enough to know that not all whites are capable of quality behavior.

  4. Ryu says:

    Good post. I also am not impressed with the technology of today. All they do is make things smaller and cook up a bunch of distractions like Iphones. Even drones are not new. That’s the real growth market of da future – surveillance cameras and drones

  5. Software is still an excellent occupation for very bright natives. The belief that this is not the case is a mythology.

    Let me put it another way: What’s a better career choice for a bright white guy? If you can’t get into Dartmouth, Harvard, or Yale then Goldman Sachs is probably not an option. So what are you going to do?

    • I’m not familiar with the current state of the industry. I think one problem is the workforce is now heavy with ethnocentric Indians and Chinese who don’t like whites, think they are dumb, think of programming work as “theirs” and will make life hard for a white guy. This all depends on the company and other specific circumstances, but professions everywhere are ethnically based and that is becoming the case here.

      • Ian says:

        My programmer friends tell me that they generally enjoy their Asian coworkers, and say that they are fine with raising the H1B visa limit because the best jobs in their companies usually go to bright whites. My friends are liberals, but I do think that they would tell me the truth if they felt otherwise.

      • K(yle) says:

        You have two tiers of commercial (non-academic) programmers. There is a certain threshold of ability where a single programmer is as good as ten because he makes few mistakes, and his workflow is so solid that his output is consistently higher. This top tier of programmer is inhabited by very few south Asians.

        It’s definitely not “science” (for the non-academics anyway), but it’s readily apparent to anyone in the know that it’s not something that these swarthy foreigners can do well. They exist to push wages down on the guys expected to actually do the work (who are still mostly white, with a disproportionate amount of east Asians, but almost no south Asians) and not to actually do the work themselves. That’s the trick. It certainly costs more to employ 10 Indians to do 1 job, but it is an option, and having that option allows the company to lowball their offer for the guy they actually want on the job.

        Most programmers are clueless to this, because even a lot of white programmers don’t break that threshold where they are legitimately good at their job. Even most white programmers have bad workflow and their output isn’t what it could be, but the Indians are in their own category in terms of wasting time and fucking up. Not that there are no good Indian programmers, but there’s obviously a ton of them in the industry who are there for political and nepotistic reasons.

        The existence of all these subpar programmers also results in a more stringent hiring processes now too because the overhead created by bad programmers is enormous. This makes hiring talented proles less likely because they will be less adept at navigating that process than the sons of professional households. Which isn’t a limitation on immigrants of course, whose off-color tells aren’t going to be considered, or might even be considered favorably.

  6. Pingback: Optimizing for truth | Bloody shovel

  7. Aaron says:

    Whites must return to quality learning, quality thinking, and quality behavior.

    There are many different ways to take this statement, some good and some not. When I read this, the first interpretation that popped into my head was that it was a call for tigermomism. This is probably not what you had in mind and it maybe it seems pedantic to denounce something so obviously bad (putting your hand on a lit stove is bad OK?) but there is actually quite a few parents that think like Chua so its worth addressing. Most children, even white children, don’t benefit much from a heavily academic education. Looking back, there was really no reason why I shouldn’t have ended my academic education and permanently entered the job market at ~14. That this wouldn’t have been practical had nothing do with myself or the labor market and everything to do with artificial societal constraints.

    The problem with tigermomism is that it is a high stakes strategy that fails more often then it works. When tigermomism works, it works well enough but when it fails you end financially and/or emotionally broken people. The best strategy is not to “hit the books” super hard but to (a) get the fundamentals right and (b) expose them a wide variety of stuff so that they can find their interests.

    I forgot which one of the Moldbuggist writers put it that skilled apprenticeships are Vaisaya power and academic credentials are Brahmin power and the latter has annexed huge swathes of the former. It is interesting to imagine a completely opposite scenario: would it be possible for STEM fields to break away from the university and function as guilds?

    • “Tigermomism” is careerism- attempting to get into an elite school and be part of the power structure. It’s morally corrupt as well as stupid. What is the benefit of playing the piano or violin? Basically none unless you enjoy it.

      Children should learn things worth learning- math, science, language and classical literature- at a pace that suits their individual level of intelligence and curiosity. All the “liberal arts”- history and social sciences- are junk. A smart boy might want to be a technician rather than an engineer, and that’s fine.

  8. robroysimmons says:

    I was stationed in SoCal 82-85 and IMO Cals were all shitheads, wastes of white skins. Several years ago I was watching a NatGeo show on the Hotshot fire fighting crews and they ended showing the brush fires of SoCal and every white except the two old school LA fire fighters were worthless. I mean the two hippies from Oregon that worked on the crew were worthwhile whites compared to the idiot whites running around watching everything burn.

    Sorry dude, its obvious you are not a SoCal shithead, but that place consumes whites, not creates them.

    • The whole phenomenon of SoCal culture is a thing in and of itself. I think punk was so big there because people had been told they were living the ultimate, best lifestyle- and in terms of American consumerism, they were, but they could see it was all shit, and they were outraged.

      “The Kids Aren’t Alright” by the Offspring is about where I’m from, describes perfectly many people I knew.

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