May Day

Every May 1st in elementary school we took the walk around the Maypole, actually quite unceremoniously, as we were on average 8 years old, nonetheless weaving the pastel streamers into their trellis pattern. I don't think anyone ever stopped to explain exact, or even possible, origins of the day. Communist or pagan - neither resonated very well with grade school gym teachers.

And here we are today, bearing witness to honest-to-God protests by migrant workers. There was a show of support even in this little New England town, several thousand people, said a professor who saw it, on the village green. I don't know how that compares to the presence both in support and protest of the Chinese president's visit. I should have raised the question when the economists sat around in an Asian fusion restaurant discussing why the Asians weren't boycotting. These men who were so fired up over relative price differentials in Copenhagen had little to say about what makes an ethnicity assimilable and what does not. A wife rolled her eyes and said, "Oh, dinner with economists." Of course they think the workers should stay. Free movement for factors of production. But they haven't the foggiest idea how they could be made more welcome.


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