Paris riots interrupt the CoolToys tour? Yes part of the CoolToys team is in Paris France as part of our tour looking for next seasons CoolToys. Last night the Paris Riots rocked Frances Capital City with some of the worst civil unrest in over 50 years. Over 4000 police officers were dispatched with dozens injured and hundreds of “protestors” arrested.
The French President
Emmanuel Macron, the President of France was attending a G20 conference and like the rest of his government was caught completely off guard by the rioting in Paris. Being in Nantes and Paris during these events has been surreal to say the least, and that is coming from the co-pilot that flew Governor Wilson of California right into the Rodney King Riots.
You have to wonder why President Macron and his cabinet were caught off guard by the Paris Riots though, as the writers of “The Circle” predicted an event like this a couple of years ago. Maybe because the movie portrayed an evil business man as the instigator and in this case there may not be one?
Businesses have been drooling over the power of social media and “Viral Videos” since the advent of the term. A viral video is a single video or post can make a company or a person famous and put them on the launch pad to success. Every millennial with a camera hopes to create a viral video and never work again. With everything that business likes a viral video, there is an opposite dark power associated with it and this is it.
One Truck Driver did not understand why the French government was increasing the fuel tax and made a facebook post calling for a protest. Yes they still use facebook here. That post went viral and the public jumped on board.
As Tommy Lee pontificated in the Movie Men In Black “A person is smart. People are dumb, panicky dangerous animals and you know it. Fifteen hundred years ago everybody knew the Earth was the center of the universe. Five hundred years ago, everybody knew the Earth was flat, and fifteen minutes ago, you knew that humans were alone on this planet. Imagine what you’ll know tomorrow. ”
The public jumping on board wasn’t really the issue, it was the power vacuum it created. The truck driver just made a post. He wasn’t trying to be the next YouTube star. Dozens of small radical group leaders were though and quickly jumped on the opportunity.
The Fix Is In?
The French President flew back today to fix the problem, and in French style the clean up crews were out in force picking up the burnt Christmas trees, damaged holiday decorations, removing the graffiti and replacing broken windows. Sadly the Louvre was hit, thankfully only a minor hit though. The cleanup has been so quick we almost couldn’t get any pictures.
The Presidents return will be interesting to watch. This “movement” was simply a viral event that had no leadership, simply a beginning, and so far no end. Now many groups wanting to meet with the president are trying to get news time and validate their position in this chaos so they can somehow get to the table and get something they want. None of them started this or led this. They may all escalate it. The odd thing is they only riot on Saturday.
The real protesters, the “Gilets” or “Vests” were very peaceful, blocking toll booths and intersections both slowing traffic and allowing everyone to pass without paying the toll. The police just watched. As an American I was told to put a Gilete (vest) on the dash of my car to get around town faster. It worked and they were almost pleasant about it. It was the craziest “protest” I have ever experienced.
Who Is The Villian?
What this is showing us is that unlike the movie staring Tom Hanks, where there is a bad guy at the end, this one has no real bad guy to point a finger at. Social media didn’t promote these posts that we know of. If they did, I hope like the movie “The Circle” someone exposes them.
Being right in the middle of it all though, tells me there was no one driving this other than the group dynamic that does so much good (and bad) in the world. The collective drives great things like roads, bridges, theater and art. It also creates riots and war.
For some reason the moral compass of the human experience drifts when more than one person is involved. You can’t have an affair by yourself and in the same vein you can’t riot alone. As the saying goes “It takes two to tango”, and it take two or more to create chaos. The more people that are involved the more the moral compass falls off center and the more damage is done. Last night in Paris was a perfect example of that.
How To Negotiate With The “Collective”
The President of France doesn’t have an issue about the Paris Riots that needs to be negotiated at the table with a few blowhards grabbing at the opportunity for power that appeared yesterday. What President Macon has is an issue that needs to be made viral in the public forum. If he wants to separate from foreign oil dependence he’ll need to clearly explain why that is necessary in a way that people can grasp and make their own. That is a challenge in and of itself.
Today this is a problem in Paris. Soon it might be a problem for the world.