The riots, the smashing of monuments, the cancel culture – these are not political phenomena. These are economic phenomena.
I rarely say this because I see politics in everything. But here I see not a trace of any political goal or motivation. People are feeling rage because they can’t access the upper-middle-class lifestyle they think they deserve. They are slipping into the lumpen class. It’s degrading, so they fake exceptional sensibility that is supposed to signal to the world how different they are.
Think how many of the young and not-so-young people who are running around breaking things won’t be able or haven’t been able to form families, buy a house, start a good pension fund. That’s what they are so upset about. Precarity, loneliness, uselessness. It’s easier to pretend that life isn’t giving you what you want because you are too busy correcting social injustices and not because you are one of the “wasted lives,” the detritus of the current moment.