Paris is humming

As we walk and walk and walk and walk particularly at night from the 11th to the 6th, you can feel the streets of Paris just humming.  It wasn’t like that 5 years ago.  The city feels more vibrant today than ever.  It is the youth.  There are new restaurants, new stores, new start-ups, neighborhoods being transformed and it feels really good.

Cities are constantly changing.  NYC always hums but these days when you walk by vacant storefront after storefront, it is depressing.  I wonder what is needed to transform the city back to a place where there is more innovation at the street level?

As I strolled the streets, I thought about how I am not a fan of the conservative mindset.  I am a fan of people who are forward thinkers, people who take risks, people who embrace change and evolution.  Perhaps that is where the United States is as a country right now.  The conservative mindset actually likes the Trumponian politics.  They are selfish vs giving.  They are happy shutting down the borders and dismissing our allies, and of course, paying fewer taxes.  It is not about being selfless.

I believe what goes around comes around.  The effects of these arrogant self-serving policies will come back to bite us all in the ass.  It is unfortunate and perhaps fortunate that politics run in cycles.  Being in Paris and feeling the hum of the streets makes me long for forward thinking in our Government that creates opportunity at the ground level.  We are not getting that right now from any party which means that eventually, the ground will shift to somewhere else and when that happens, there will be a huge mess and havoc before we get to the next place where there is solid ground.

Comments (Archived):

  1. Armaity

    Please, could you share the brand of walking shoes you wear when you travel. Thank you.

    1. Gotham Gal

      I don’t wear walking shoes. Currently, I am wearing Rick Owen sandals and Nike sneakers.

      1. Armaity

        Thank you for the reply and your blog.

  2. Tom Labus

    I never thought Americans could be played this easily. People will believe any gibberish when desperate enough.

    1. JLM

      .Next thing you’ll be telling me you can elected President chanting: “Hope and change!”Nah, nobody’s that dumb.JLMwww.themusingsofthebigredca…

  3. JLM

    .You have a terribly flawed view of what conservative politics is all about, but that is understandable as you are not open minded, do not travel in those circles, and are not intellectually curious. This is a criticism which fits when the lens is focused on conservatives. We have all withdrawn into our tribal camps, unwilling to let the fray be idea focused.Conservative politics is focused on less government and more freedom – less regulation thereby unleashing the creative power of entrepreneurs and markets to find customer driven solutions.Yes, conservatives think we have a bloated government which stymies innovation and costs way too much.Conservatives trust the people to be wiser with their money than the government and, therefore, want to ensure the people control their hard-earned wealth. It is the antithesis to the liberal/progressive view of things which mandates that “the government, Chuck Schumer, Nancy Pelosi know best” and, therefore, your money is really their money as they know better how to deploy your money better than you do.I don’t think it’s particularly “conservative” but Pres Trump does think that our allies, as an example NATO, should live up to their agreements and commitments. The North Atlantic Treaty requires mutual defense – Art V: an attack on one is an attack on all, but it also requires treaty members to spend 2% of GDP on defense. Yes, Pres Trump is holding our NATO allies’ feet to the fire and asking them to meet their commitments.Our allies have gotten used to letting the US pay the bills. Finally, we have someone asking – why?The recent decision to withdraw from the UNCHR – $1.5B from US of $4B total budget – which spent all of its time confounding the Palestinian-Israel problem through a series of condemnations driven by members like Cuba and Iran – is a perfect example of asking for “value” in the investment of US taxpayer funded dollars.You are safer in Paris today because Pres Trump has destroyed ISIS and denied it the ability to export terror from safe havens in the Middle East. More liberal US Presidents could have done the same thing, but they did not. Bravo for President Trump’s policies and the results. Viva la difference, no?I don’t particularly consider Pres Trump to be a conservative. I think of him more as a pragmatist, but he gets credit for solving real problems – ISIS, North Korea, the economy, even immigration.I think he screwed up the entire issue of immigration detainment, but it was not a problem he caused. It has been festering and unaddressed since Reagan’s amnesty. What will happen is that something will finally get done.Perhaps, the best thing about the conservative approach to political governance is the willingness to catalog and attack real problems and not just kick them down the road.JLMwww.themusingsofthebigredca…

    1. fredwilson

      “open minded”. He who lives in glass houses should not throw stones. But you are the least self aware blow hard I have ever come across

      1. JLM

        .Haha, shoe must pinch a bit.Nice to see that chivalry isn’t dead. Classy comment, really.JLMwww.themusingsofthebigredca…

        1. Gotham Gal

          I don’t need or want someone on my blog calling me not intellectually curious. I am not interested in blow hard comments. Agreeing to disagree is one thing. Having open smart conversations so we can all understand different beliefs at the table I applaud but your disrespectful attitude is not welcomed here.

          1. JLM

            .One feeds one’s intellectual curiosity by listening to the ideas which are either not native or with which one rarely comes into contact. Frankly, my desire to hear from those whose leanings are not similar to mine is what drives me to read many blogs, yours, sometimes, included.The alternative is an echo chamber in which the same thoughts resonate without any pushback.If you thought my comment was disrespectful to you personally, please accept my most sincere and heartfelt apology.OTOH, you project yourself as a tough, worldly cookie, and it stretches credulity that you would be offended by the same tone with which you attack both conservatives and anyone who does not fall into the Trump hater camp.The best ideas emerge from the confrontation of opposing ideas, but we all have to be courageous and curious enough to hear and consider them.JLMwww.themusingsofthebigredca…

          2. SFG

            I consider myself conservative. But I don’t put myself in any box. Because of where I live, most of my friends and colleagues are liberal and I do my best to not put them in a box either.What I’ve come to realize is that we are really not that far apart — at least not as far apart as your blog post would indicate. It can be too easy these days to cast (over the top) dispersions about the other side, like if the other side would just go away, then life would jump the track to perfection. Which of course it would not.I like the checks and balances, the back and forth. As much as I don’t agree with you, what I like is that you make me think about and consider my own values all the more. And I’m glad to not be anything like your description of a conservative!

          3. Gotham Gal

            I agree with you. It’s about both sides of the fence. Finding a place to unite. I have friends from both sides.I am reacting to my daily frustration of what I see happening in our countryIt’s upsetting. I don’t believe we are moving forward but backward on too many issues. Somehow we have lost our moral compass and that is something I can’t understand

  4. awaldstein

    I look to the new generation for inspiration in politics honestly as well.The narrow and end-justifies-the-means crowd are suffocating the world and its spirit.Thought of you and Fred as I scootered over to meet a friend at this tiny hole-in-the-wall spot on Rose for dinner last night.Have fun.

    1. JLM

      .Being involved as a Precinct Chair, an Election Judge, and a member of a Cty Exec Committee, I can tell you with great certainty that the “young” do not participate in any way at all. They are totally missing in action. Nobody.This is in Austin, Texas where there is a great sufficiency of talent and young folks.You know who does participate? Old gray haired people who have skin in the game.JLMwww.themusingsofthebigredca…

  5. Pointsandfigures

    100% disagree with your assessment on the conservative mindset. NYC has boarded up storefronts-so does Chicago. Conservatives aren’t running the show in either city, county, or state.When we have problems-the non-conservatives go to the same playbook for solutions. That’s not forward thinking.