AuthorTopic: The French are Fried  (Read 1209 times)

Offline RE

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The French are Fried
« on: June 03, 2016, 10:36:04 PM »
I had a real hard time titling this thread on a Diner food theme.  :icon_scratch:  The French are Frog's Legs?  The French are Escargot?  The French are Stinky Cheese?  LOL.

Titling problems aside, the Frogs look like they are in full melt-down mode these days, and obviously the flooding situation isn't going to help much here.

Definitely crossing Paris off my Bucket List of places to visit again before I croak.

RE

<a href="http://www.youtube.com/v/jFYhxQuv7TU" target="_blank" class="new_win">http://www.youtube.com/v/jFYhxQuv7TU</a>
« Last Edit: June 03, 2016, 11:54:58 PM by RE »
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Offline RE

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The Frog Boys in Black Pajamas SUIT UP to Riot!
« Reply #1 on: June 14, 2016, 04:51:19 PM »
<a href="http://www.youtube.com/v/E67EuYWUFfI" target="_blank" class="new_win">http://www.youtube.com/v/E67EuYWUFfI</a>

Interesting thing about this latest video of Rioting Frogs is how the Boys in Black Pajamas are SUITING UP!

Notice they all wear Googles, they mostly have at least a scarf or filter mask, and a few have full blown gas masks.  They wear gloves to be able to hurl back the Tear Gas Cannisters at the Gestapo, and/or construction boots to kick them back..

This is pretty much rendering the TG solution for breaking up riots pretty ineffective.  I am wondering why the Frog Gestapo is not yet using LRAD or Microwave systems for crowd dispersal?  ???  :icon_scratch:

I'm also wondering when the BIBP will start bringing their own Shields, Potato Guns and Slingbows to these battles to even up the odds some on the weapon level?  Also some training in Martial Arts utilizing Nunchuks and heavy wooden Staffs.  They have the Numbers.  If a few hundred of them had staffs, they could whack the living shit out of the Gestapo in Hand to Hand combat.

<a href="http://www.youtube.com/v/ocUTWA7Gv30" target="_blank" class="new_win">http://www.youtube.com/v/ocUTWA7Gv30</a>

<a href="http://www.youtube.com/v/chx8lIk9nNI" target="_blank" class="new_win">http://www.youtube.com/v/chx8lIk9nNI</a>

Of course the Gestapo would then start firing Live Ammo, but then they lose the Propaganda war, since they would be firing on people who did NOT have Gunz.

I am heartened though to see that the BIBP are now starting to suit up at least on the Defensive level.  Hockey pads and helmets should be next.

RE
« Last Edit: June 14, 2016, 05:09:20 PM by RE »
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Offline RE

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Big Stakes for Frog POTUS: Global Goobernance Versus the People
« Reply #2 on: April 07, 2017, 03:05:11 AM »
http://www.globalresearch.ca/big-stakes-in-the-french-presidential-election-global-governance-versus-the-people/5582937

Big Stakes in the French Presidential Election: Global Governance Versus the People
By Diana Johnstone
Global Research, April 02, 2017
Region: Europe
Theme: Culture, Society & History

The 2017 French Presidential election is no joke. It is shaping up as a highly significant encounter between two profoundly opposing conceptions of political life. On one side, governance, meaning the joint management of society by a co-opted elite, on the model of business corporations. On the other side, the traditional system called “democracy”, meaning the people’s choice of leaders by free and fair elections.

Historically, French political events tend to mark epochs and clarify dichotomies, starting with the waning distinction between “left” and “right”. This election may be such an event.

What is “governance”?

It has become increasingly clear that the trans-Atlantic power elite have long since decided that traditional representative democracy is no longer appropriate for a globalized world based on free circulation of capital. Instead, the favored model is “governance”, a word taken from the business world, which refers to successful management of large corporations, united in a single purpose and aiming at maximum efficiency. This origin is evident in aspects of political governance: an obligatory unanimity concerning “values”, enforced by corporate media; the use of specialized committees to provide suggestions concerning delicate issues, a role played by “civil society”; the use of psychology and communications to shape public opinion; isolation of trouble-makers; and co-optation of leadership.

These features increasingly describe political life in the West. In the United States, the transition from democracy to governance has been managed by the two-party system, limiting voters’ choice to two candidates, selected and vetted by principal shareholders in the national business on the basis of their commitment to pursuing the governance agenda. This was going smoothly until Hillary Clinton, the overwhelming favorite of the entire elite, was shockingly defeated by an unvetted intruder, Donald Trump. The unprecedented negative reaction throughout the West shows how little the global governance elite is ready to cede power to an outsider. The situation in the United States remains uncertain, but the upset reflected rising, although poorly defined, popular resentment against the globalizing governors, especially due to economic inequality and the decline of living standards for much of the population.

Hillary Clinton actually chose to use the word “governance” to describe her goals, in partnership with Goldman Sachs and other representatives of “civil society”. But even she was not as much a pure product of the globalization system as the French candidate Emmanuel Macron. (image right)

Governance Personified

The first way to spot the role assigned to Macron is simply to glance at the media: the endless magazine covers, puff pieces, platitudinous interviews – and never a word of criticism (whereas his leading rivals are systematically denigrated). In January, Foreign Policy introduced its readers to Macron as “The English-Speaking, German-Loving, French Politician Europe Has Been Waiting For”.

His career trajectory makes it clear why Western mainstream media are hailing Macron as the Messiah.

Born in Amiens only 39 years ago, Emmanuel Macron has spent a lot of his life in school. Like most of France’s leaders, he was educated in some of the best, but not the best, of France’s elite schools (for connoisseurs, he failed entrance to ENS but did Sciences Po and ENA). U.S. media seem impressed by the fact that along the way he studied philosophy, which is no big deal in France.

In 2004 he passed the competitive exam to be admitted to the Inspection Générale des Finances, one of the corps of experts that have distinguished the French system since Napoleon. IGF inspectors have lifetime security and are assigned as economic advisors to government officials or private entities. In the IGF he gained the attention of the particularly well-connected senior official Jean-Pierre Jouyet, who recommended him to Jacques Attali, the most spectacular of the intellectual gurus who for the past 35 years has regaled French governments with his futuristic visions (Jerusalem as capital of a future world government, for example). In 2007, Attali co-opted Macron into his super-elite “Commission for the Liberation of Growth”, authorized to provide guidance to the Presidency. A star was born – a star of the business world.

The Attali commission prepared a list of 316 proposals explicitly designed  to “install a new governance in service of growth”. In this context, “growth” naturally means growth of profits, by way of measures cutting back the cost of labor, tearing down barriers to movement of capital, deregulation. The 40 elite members planning the future of France included heads of Deutsche Bank and the Swiss firm Nestle. They also provided the young Macron with a valuable address book of useful contacts.

In 2008, on recommendation from Attali, Macron was taken into the Rothschild Bank at a high level. By negotiating a Nestle purchase worth nine billion dollars, Macron became a millionaire, thanks to his commission.

To what did he owe a successful rise that two centuries ago would have been a subject for a Balzac novel? He was “impressive”, recalls Attali. He got along with everyone and “didn’t antagonize anyone”.

Alain Minc, another star expert on everything, once put it this way: Macron is smart, but above all, he makes a good banker because he is “charming” – a necessary quality for “a whore’s profession” (“un métier de pute”).

Macron is famous for such words of wisdom as:

    “What France needs is more young people who want to become billionaires.”

Or:

    “Who cares about programs? What counts is vision.”

So Macron has launched his career on the basis of his charm and “vision” – he certainly has a clear vision of the way to the top.

Formation of the Governance Elite

This path is strewn with contacts. The governance elite operates by co-optation. They recognize each other, they “smell each other out”, they are of one mind.

Of course, these days, the active thought police are quick to condemn talk of “governance” as a form of conspiracy theory. But there is no conspiracy, because there does not need to be. People who think alike act together. Nobody has to tell them what to do.

And people who decry every hint of “conspiracy” seem to believe that people who possess immense power, especially financial power, don’t bother to use it. Instead they sit back and tell themselves, “Let the people decide.” Like George Soros, for instance.

In reality, people with power not only use it, they are convinced that they should use it, for the good of humanity, for the good of the world. They know best, so why should they leave momentous decisions up to the ignorant masses?That’s why David Rockefeller founded the Trilateral Commission forty years ago, to figure out how to deal with “too much democracy”.

These days, ideologues keep the masses amused with arguments about themselves, which identity group they belong to, which gender they might be, who is being unfair to whom, who it is they must “hate” for the crime of “hating”.

Meanwhile, the elite meet among themselves and decide what is best.

Thanks to Jouyet, in 2007 Macron was co-opted into a club called Les Gracques (after the Roman Gracchus brothers), devoted to “values” based on recognition that the Keynesian welfare State doesn’t fit globalization and European Union development.

In 2011, Macron was co-opted into the Club de la Rotonde, which undertook to advise President Hollande to hit France with a “competitiveness shock” – favoring investment by lowering public expenses and labor costs.

In 2012, Macron was welcomed into the French-American Foundation, known for selecting the “young leaders” of the future.

In 2014, Macron made it to the really big time. On May 31 and June 1 of that year he attended the annual Bilderberg meeting, held in Copenhagen. This super-secret gathering of “governance” designers was formed in 1954 by Prince Bernhard of the Netherlands. No journalists are allowed into the Bilderberg gathering, but leading press barons are there to agree on the consensus that must be spun to the masses.

And Policy? Program? What’s That?

With all these credentials, Macron went from being an economic advisor to François Hollande to Minister of Economy, Finance and Digital Industry, under Prime Minister Manuel Valls, where he vigorously promoted the Attali agency on pretext of promoting “growth”. Among other things, he reversed the position of his predecessor by approving the sale of the crown jewel of French industry, the Alstom energy sector responsible for France’s nuclear power industry, to General Electric.

As Minister, Macron was responsible for the most unpopular measures of the entire unpopular Hollande presidency.  His so-called “Macron Law”, featuring massive deregulation, conformed to European Union directives but was unable to win a majority in parliament, and had to be adopted by resorting to Article 49.3 in the Constitution,which allows the Prime Minister to adopt a law without a vote.

His next accomplishment was more veiled. He designed the “reform” (partial dismantling) of French labor law, presented to the public as the El Khomri Law, named after the young labor minister, Moroccan-born Myriam El Khomri. Mme El Khomri had virtually nothing to do with “her” law, except to put a pretty face and an “ethnic diversity” name on wildly unpopular legislation which sent protesting workers into the streets for weeks, split the Socialist Party and obliged Prime Minister Valls to resort once again to Article 49.3 to pass it into law.

Here the story becomes almost comical. Macron’s slash and burn dash through the Hollande/Valls government virtually destroyed the French Socialist Party, leaving it divided and demoralized. This opened the way for Macron to emerge as the heroic champion of “the future”, “neither left nor right”, “the France of winners” in his new party, En Marche (which can mean “it’s up and running”).

At present, Macron has risen to the top of the polls, neck and neck with the front runner, Marine Le Pen, for the April 23 first round, and thus the favorite to challenge her in the decisive May 7 second round. Being “charming” assured Macron a successful career as a banker, and the sycophantic mass media are doing their best to assure him the Presidency, mainly on the basis of his youthful charm.

The Media and the People

As never before, the press and television from which most people get their news have become not only unanimous in their choice and unscrupulous in their methods, but tyrannical in their condemnation of independent news sources as “fake” and “false”. They should be called the Mind Management Media. Objectivity is a thing of the past.

There are eleven official candidates running for the office of President of the French Republic. The Mind Management Media lavish admiring attention on Macron, treat his serious rivals as delinquents, toss a few bones to sure losers and ignore the rest. Backed by the Mind Management Media, Macron is the candidate of authoritarian governance running against all the others, against French democracy itself.

This is the first of two articles on the French Presidential election.

Diana Johnstone is co-author of From MAD to Madness (Clarity Press), a memoir of nuclear target planning in the Pentagon by Dr. Paul H. Johnstone, her late father.
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Offline Palloy2

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Re: The French are pâté de fois gras and champagne
« Reply #3 on: April 07, 2017, 05:34:01 PM »
A leader of the Socialist Party who is a banker, Bildeberger, de-regulation and labour law reform protagonist.  Same old same old.
"The State is a body of armed men."

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Re: The French are pâté de fois gras and champagne
« Reply #4 on: April 07, 2017, 06:02:46 PM »
A leader of the Socialist Party who is a banker, Bildeberger, de-regulation and labour law reform protagonist.  Same old same old.

Indeed.  But will this Illuminati Scum beat the Nazi Scum of Marine LePen?

RE
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Frogs Vote!
« Reply #5 on: April 21, 2017, 12:08:05 AM »
Will the latest "terror" attack put the Sub-Mariner Le Pen over the top?  Kind of reminds me of the "terror" attack right before the Brexit vote...hmmmm...

RE

French Vote That Hinged on Le Pen Becomes 4-Way Race to Finish
by Mark Deen
April 20, 2017, 7:00 PM AKDT

    Communist-backed Melenchon surges into contention in last days
    Top two candidates on Sunday go through to May 7 runoff


Marine Le Pen. Photographer: Francois Nascimbeni/AFP via Getty Images

France’s 2017 election campaign began with the specter of a populist insurgency led by the National Front’s Marine Le Pen and is drawing to a close with Communist-backed Jean-Luc Melenchon upending expectations.

The candidates on Friday head into the final day of campaigning before the first-round vote with both Melenchon and Republican Francois Fillon hoping to snatch a place in the May 7 runoff from the front-runners Le Pen and Emmanuel Macron. While Macron, a 39-year-old centrist, has been vying with Le Pen for the lead since the beginning of March, Melenchon seized the initiative over the past month, almost doubling his support to leave the final result up for grabs.

An extra element of uncertainty entered the campaign late Thursday when Islamic State claimed responsibility for that left one policeman dead and two others injured after a shooting in the center of Paris. Their attacker was shot and killed as he tried to escape.

French voters are heading to the polls under emergency laws introduced in November 2015 when gunmen killed 130 people in attacks around Paris and security concerns have been a major theme of the campaign.
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Le Pen topped the polls for the first round during much of the race with her pledges to cut immigration, restore border controls and take France out of the euro. Yet investor concerns about a rupture of the currency union were tempered by surveys showing she would lose comfortable to either Macron or Fillon in the runoff. Melenchon’s rise has altered those calculations, pushing French bond yields close to a four-year high.

“This election is incredibly tight,” said Dominique Reynie, a professor of political science at Sciences Po in Paris. “It suggests whatever happens we are in for profound political change.”
Melenchon’s Threat

Melenchon, 65, says he doesn’t want to pull France out of the euro or the European Union, though like Le Pen wants to overhaul EU treaties and impose political constraints on the European Central Bank -- and is threatening to walk away if he doesn’t get what he wants.

“Europe, we’ll change it or leave it,” Melenchon said late Thursday on France 2 television, adding that he wants France to be a partner of the EU and Germany, not a “vassal.”

The candidate remains in fourth position, with 18.5 percent support heading into Sunday’s voting, according to Bloomberg’s composite of polls. That compares with 19.5 percent for Fillon, 22.5 percent for Le Pen and 24 percent for Macron.


But it’s Melenchon’s momentum that is striking. It raises the prospect, albeit still the least likely scenario, of two anti-EU candidates making it into the runoff.

What’s more, his plans to limit executive pay and restrict companies’ dividends may be encouraging some conservatives to swallow their objection to the financial scandals surrounding Fillon. Antonio Barroso, a political analyst at Teneo Intelligence in London, says facing either Fillon or Melenchon would give Le Pen her best chance of victory. If Melenchon did contest the presidency with Le Pen, investors may favor the nationalist.

“Both Le Pen and Melenchon represent a risk for markets, but Melenchon would be more disruptive for the French economy than Le Pen”, Frederic Leroux, global fund manager at Carmignac Gestion, said at a briefing in Paris Thursday.

France’s CAC 40 equities index rose on Thursday and the premium the French state pays to borrow over Germany fell as Macron’s lead in the polls strengthened. Still, investors may be overestimating the strength of Macron’s position, Michael Hewson, chief market analyst at CMC Markets U.K. said.

“Melenchon has recent momentum in his favor and Emmanuel Macron remains largely untested as a politician,” Hewson said in a research note.
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Offline RE

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http://www.globalresearch.ca/the-main-issue-in-the-french-presidential-election-national-sovereignty-and-the-future-of-france/5586321

The Main Issue in the French Presidential Election: National Sovereignty and the Future of France
By Diana Johnstone
Global Research, April 21, 2017
Region: Europe
Theme: Police State & Civil Rights


The 2017 French Presidential election marks a profound change in European political alignments. There is an ongoing shift from the traditional left-right rivalry to opposition between globalization, in the form of the European Union (EU), and national sovereignty.

Standard media treatment sticks to a simple left-right dualism: “racist” rejection of immigrants is the main issue and that what matters most is to “stop Marine Le Pen!”

Going from there to here is like walking through Alice’s looking glass. Almost everything is turned around.

On this side of the glass, the left has turned into the right and part of the right is turning into the left.

Fifty years ago, it was “the left” whose most ardent cause was passionate support for Third World national liberation struggles. The left’s heroes were Ahmed Ben Bella, Sukarno, Amilcar Cabral, Patrice Lumumba, and above all Ho Chi Minh. What were these leaders fighting for? They were fighting to liberate their countries from Western imperialism. They were fighting for independence, for the right to determine their own way of life, preserve their own customs, decide their own future. They were fighting for national sovereignty, and the left supported that struggle.

Today, it is all turned around. “Sovereignty” has become a bad word in the mainstream left.

National sovereignty is an essentially defensive concept. It is about staying home and minding one’s own business. It is the opposite of the aggressive nationalism that inspired fascist Italy and Nazi Germany to conquer other countries, depriving them of their national sovereignty.

The confusion is due to the fact that most of what calls itself “the left” in the West has been totally won over to the current form of imperialism – aka “globalization”. It is an imperialism of a new type, centered on the use of military force and “soft” power to enable transnational finance to penetrate every corner of the earth and thus to reshape all societies in the endless quest for profitable return on capital investment. The left has been won over to this new imperialism because it advances under the banner of “human rights” and “antiracism” – abstractions which a whole generation has been indoctrinated to consider the central, if not the only, political issues of our times.

The fact that “sovereignism” is growing in Europe is interpreted by mainstream globalist media as proof that “Europe is moving to the right”– no doubt because Europeans are “racist”. This interpretation is biased and dangerous. People in more and more European nations are calling for national sovereignty precisely because they have lost it. They lost it to the European Union, and they want it back.

That is why the British voted to leave the European Union. Not because they are “racist”, but primarily because they cherish their historic tradition of self-rule.

The Socialist Party shipwreck

As his five-year presidency drew to its ignominious end, François Hollande was obliged by his drastic unpopularity to let his Parti Socialiste (PS) choose its 2017 presidential candidate by primary. In a surprising upset, the Socialist government’s natural candidate, prime minister Manuel Valls, lost to Benoit Hamon, an obscure member of the PS left wing who refused to vote for the unpopular, neo-liberal, anti-labor laws designed by Hollande’s economic advisor, Emmanuel Macron.
To escape from the unpopularity of the PS, Macron formed his own movement, “En Marche!” One after another, Valls, Hollande and other prominent PS leaders are tiptoeing away, leaving Hamon at the helm of the sinking ship. As Hamon justifiably protests against their betrayal, the party bigwigs pledge their support to Emmanuel Macron.

Macron ostentatiously hesitates to welcome his shopworn converts into the fold, fearing that their conversion makes it too obvious that his “En Marche!” is a clone of the right wing of the PS, on the way to becoming the French subsidiary of the U.S. Democratic Party in its Clintonian form. Macron proclaims that he is neither left nor right, as discredited politicians from both left and right jump on his bandwagon, to his embarrassment.

Hamon himself appears to be unaware that the basic cause of the Socialist Party’s shipwreck is its incompatible devotion to two contrary principles: traditional social democracy, and the European Union (EU). Macron, Hollande and their fellow turncoats at least have made their choice: the European Union.

The Twilight of the Traditional Right

The great advantage of Republican candidate François Fillon is that his policies are clear. Unlike Hollande, who tried to disguise his neoliberal policies as something else, and based his claim to be on the left on “societal” issues (gay marriage), Fillon is an unabashed conservative. His policies are designed to reduce the huge national debt. Whereas previous governments (including his own, when he was President Sarkozy’s Prime Minister) beat around the bush, Fillon won the Republican nomination by a program of sharp cutbacks in government spending.

Fillon claims that his austerity measures will lead French capitalists to invest in France and thus save the country’s economy from being completely taken over by foreign corporations, American retirement funds and Qatar. This is highly doubtful, as there is nothing under EU rules to encourage French investors to invest in France rather than somewhere else.
Fillon departs from EU orthodoxy, however, by proposing a more independent foreign policy, notably by ending the “absurd” sanctions against Russian. He is more concerned about the fate of Middle East Christians than about overthrowing Assad.

The upshot is that Fillon’s coherent pro-capitalist policy is not exactly what the dominant globalizing elite prefers. The “center left” is their clear political choice since Tony Blair and Bill Clinton revised the agendas of their respective parties. The center left emphasis on human rights (especially in faraway countries targeted for regime change) and ethnic diversity at home fits the long-term globalist aims of erasing national borders, to allow unrestricted free movement of capital. Traditional patriotic conservatism, represented by Fillon, does not altogether correspond to the international adventurism of globalization.

The Schizophrenic Left

For a generation, the French left has made “the construction of Europe” the center of its world view. In the early 1980s, faced with opposition from what was then the European Community, French President François Mitterrand abandoned the socializing program on which he been elected. Mitterrand nursed the hope that France would politically dominate a united Europe, but the unification of Germany changed all that. So did EU expansion to Eastern Central nations within the German sphere of influence. Economic policy is now made in Germany.

As the traditional left goal of economic equality was abandoned, it was superseded by emphatic allegiance to “human rights”, which is now taught in school as a veritable religion. The vague notion of human rights was somehow associated with the “free movement” of everything and everybody. Indeed the official EU dogma is protection of “free movement”: free movement of goods, people, labor and (last but certainly not least) capital. These “four freedoms” in practice transform the nation from a political society into a financial market, an investment opportunity, run by a bureaucracy of supposed experts. In this way, the European Union has become the vanguard experiment in transforming the world into a single capitalist market.

The French left bought heavily into this ideal, partly because it deceptively echoed the old leftist ideal of “internationalism” (whereas capital has always been incomparably more “international” than workers), and partly due to the simplistic idea that “nationalism” is the sole cause of wars. More fundamental and complex causes of war are ignored.

For a long time, the left has complained about job loss, declining living standards, delocalization or closure of profitable industries, without recognizing that these unpopular results are caused by EU requirements. EU directives and regulations increasingly undermine the French model of redistribution through public services, and are now threatening to wipe them out altogether – either because “the government is bankrupt” or because of EU competition rules prohibit countries from taking measures to preserve their key industries or their agriculture. Rather than face reality, the left’s reaction has mostly been to repeat its worn-out demand for an impossible “Social Europe”.

Yet the dream of “social Europe” received what amounted to a fatal blow ten years ago. In 2005, a referendum was called to allow the French to approve a Constitution for united Europe. This led to an extraordinary popular discussion, with countless meetings of citizens examining every aspect of this lengthy document. Unlike normal constitutions, this document froze the member States in a single monetarist economic policy, with no possibility of change.

On May 29, 2005, French voters rejected the treaty by 55% to 45%.

What seemed to be a great victory for responsible democracy turned into its major failure. Essentially the same document, renamed the Lisbon Treaty, was ratified in December 2007, without a referendum. Global governance had put the people in their place. This produced widespread disillusion with politics as millions concluded that their votes didn’t matter, that politicians paid no attention to the will of the people.

Even so, Socialist politicians continued to pledge undying allegiance to the EU, always with the prospect that “Social Europe” might somehow be possible.

Meanwhile, it has become more and more obvious that EU monetarist policy based on the common currency, the euro, creates neither growth nor jobs as promised but destroys both. Unable to control its own currency, obliged to borrow from private banks, and to pay them interest, France is more and more in debt, its industry is disappearing and its farmers are committing suicide, on the average of one every other day. The left has ended up in an impossible position: unswervingly loyal to the EU while calling for policies that are impossible under EU rules governing competition, free movement, deregulation, budgetary restraints, and countless other regulations produced by an opaque bureaucracy and ratified by a virtually powerless European Parliament, all under the influence of an army of lobbyists.

Benoit Hamon remains firmly stuck on the horns of the left’s fatal dilemma: determination to be “socialist”, or rather, social democratic, and passionate loyalty to “Europe”. While insisting on social policies that cannot possibly be carried out with the euro as currency and according to EU rules, Hamon still proclaims loyalty to “Europe”. He parrots the EU’s made-in-Washington foreign policy, demanding that “Assad must go” and ranting against Putin and Russia.

Jean-Luc Mélenchon Grasps the Nettle

Not only is the drab, conformist Hamon abandoned by his party heavies, he is totally upstaged on the left by the flamboyant Jean-Luc Mélenchon, a maverick ready to break the rules. After years as a PS loyalist, Mélenchon broke away in 2005 to oppose the Constitutional Treaty, gaining prominence as a fiery orator. In 2007, he left the Socialist Party and founded the Parti de Gauche (Left Party). Allied with the much weakened Communist Party, he came in fourth in the first round of the 2012 Presidential election with 11% of the vote. This time he is running for President with his own new movement, La

France Insoumise, which can be translated in a number of ways, including “the France that does not submit”.

Submit to what? Mainly, to the euro and to the antisocial, neoliberal policies of the European Union that are ruining France.

French flags and la Marseillaise have replaced the Internationale at Mélenchon rallies. “The Europe of our dreams is dead,” he acknowledges, vowing to “end the nightmare of dictatorship by banks and finance”.

Mélenchon calls for outright disobedience by violating EU treaties that are harmful to France. That is his Plan A. His Plan B is to leave the EU, in case Plan A fails to convince Germany (the current boss) and the others to agree to change the treaties.

But at best, Plan B is an empty threat to strengthen his hand in theoretical negotiations. France is such a crucial member, he maintains, that a French threat to leave should be enough to force changes.

Threatening to leave the EU is just part of Mélenchon’s vast and complicated program which includes calling a national convention to draft a constitution for France’s “sixth Republic” as well as major ecological innovation. Completely changing both France and the European Union at the same time would require the nation to be in a revolutionary effervescence that is by no means visible. It would also require a unanimity among the EU’s 28 member States that is simply impossible.

But Mélenchon is canny enough to have recognized the basic problem: the enemy of jobs, prosperity and public services is the European Union. Mélenchon is by far the candidate that generates the most excitement. He has rapidly outdistanced Hamon and draws huge enthusiastic crowds to his rallies. His progress has changed the shape of the race: at this moment, he has become one of four front-runners who might get past the first round vote on April 23 into the finals on May 7: Le Pen, Macron, Fillon and himself.

The Opposites are (almost) the Same

A most remarkable feature of this campaign is great similarity between the two candidates said to represent “the far left”, Mélenchon, and “the far right”, Marine Le Pen. Both speak of leaving the euro. Both vow to negotiate with the EU to get better treaty terms for France. Both advocate social policies to benefit workers and low income people. Both want to normalize relations with Russia. Both want to leave NATO, or at least its military command. Both defend national sovereignty, and can thus be described as “sovereignists”.

The only big difference between them is on immigration, an issue that arouses so much emotion that it is hard to discuss sensibly. Those who oppose immigration are accused of “fascism”, those who favor immigration are accused of wanting to destroy the nation’s identity by flooding it with inassimilable foreigners.

In a country suffering from unemployment, without jobs or housing to accommodate mass immigration, and under the ongoing threat of Islamist terror attacks, the issue cannot be reasonably reduced to “racism” – unless Islamic terrorists constitute a “race”, for which there is no evidence. Le Pen insists that all French citizens deserve equal treatment regardless of their origins, race or religion. She is certain to get considerable support from recently nationalized immigrants, just as she now gets a majority of working class votes. If this is “fascism”, it has changed a lot in the past seventy years.

What is significant is that despite their differences, the two most charismatic candidates both speak of restoring national sovereignty. Both evoke the possibility of leaving the European Union, although in rather uncertain terms.

The globalist media are already preparing to blame the eventual election of a “sovereignist” candidate on Vladimir Putin. Public opinion in the West is being prepared for massive protests to break out against an undesired winner, and the “antifa” militants are ready to wreak havoc in the streets. Some people who like Marine Le Pen are afraid of voting for her, fearing the “color revolution” sure to be mounted against her. Mélenchon and even Fillon might face similar problems.

As a taste of things to come, on April 20, the EU Observer published an article entitled “Russia-linked fake news floods French social media”.

Based on something called Bakamo, one of the newly establishment “fact-check” outfits meant to steer readers away from unofficial opinion, the article accused Russian-influenced web sites of favoring Marine Le Pen, Jean-Luc Mélenchon, François Fillon, Francois Asselineau, and Philippe Poutou. (They forgot to mention one of the most “sovereignist” candidates, Nicolas Dupont-Aignan, currently polling in sixth place.)

Since a large majority of the eleven candidates, including three of the four front-runners, are strongly critical of the EU and of NATO and want to improve relations with Russia, it would seem that Putin wouldn’t have to make a great effort to get a more friendly French government next time around. On the other hand, the EU Observer article is only a small sample of blatant “interference in the French election” on the part of the globalists on behalf of their favorite, Emmanuel Macron, the most enthusiastic Europhile.

The Future of France

Among those listed as alleged Russian favorites, François Asselineau is by far the most thorough critic of the European Union. Systematically ignored by the media since he founded his anti-EU party, the Union Populaire Républicain (UPR), ten years ago, François Asselineau has thousands of ardent supporters who have plastered his poster all over the country. His tireless didactic speeches, reproduced on internet, have driven home several key points:

– there is no way to improve the EU from the inside, because any change would require unanimity among 27 member states who disagree on key issues.
– the only solution for France is to use Article 50 of the EU treaties to withdraw entirely, as the United Kingdom is currently doing.
– only by leaving the EU can France save its public services, its social benefits, its economy and its democracy.
– it is only by restoring its national sovereignty that genuine democratic life, with confrontation between a real “left” and “right”, can be possible.
– by leaving the EU, France, which has over 6,000 treaties with other countries, would not be isolated but would be joining the greater world.

Asselineau is a single issue candidate. He vows that as soon as elected, he would invoke Article 50 to leave the EU and immediately apply to Washington to withdraw from NATO. He emphasizes that none of the other critics of the EU propose such a clear exit within the rules.

Other candidates, including the more charismatic Mélenchon and Le Pen, echo some of Asselineau’s arguments. But they are not ready to go so far as to advocate a clear immediate break with the EU, if only because they realize that the French population, while increasingly critical of the euro and alienated from the “European dream”, is still fearful of actually leaving, due to dire warnings of disaster from the Europeists.

The first round campaign is an opportunity for Asselineau to present his ideas to a wider audience, preparing public opinion for a more coherent “Frexit” policy. By far the most fundamental emerging issue in this campaign is the conflict between the European Union and national sovereignty. It will probably not be settled in this election, but it won’t go away.

This is the major issue of the future, because it determines whether any genuine political life is possible.
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http://www.globalresearch.ca/the-main-issue-in-the-french-presidential-election-national-sovereignty-and-the-future-of-france/5586321

The Main Issue in the French Presidential Election: National Sovereignty and the Future of France
By Diana Johnstone
Global Research, April 21, 2017
Region: Europe
Theme: Police State & Civil Rights

The 2017 French Presidential election marks a profound change in European political alignments. There is an ongoing shift from the traditional left-right rivalry to opposition between globalization, in the form of the European Union (EU), and national sovereignty.

Standard media treatment sticks to a simple left-right dualism: “racist” rejection of immigrants is the main issue and that what matters most is to “stop Marine Le Pen!”

Going from there to here is like walking through Alice’s looking glass. Almost everything is turned around.

On this side of the glass, the left has turned into the right and part of the right is turning into the left.

Fifty years ago, it was “the left” whose most ardent cause was passionate support for Third World national liberation struggles. The left’s heroes were Ahmed Ben Bella, Sukarno, Amilcar Cabral, Patrice Lumumba, and above all Ho Chi Minh. What were these leaders fighting for? They were fighting to liberate their countries from Western imperialism. They were fighting for independence, for the right to determine their own way of life, preserve their own customs, decide their own future. They were fighting for national sovereignty, and the left supported that struggle.

Today, it is all turned around. “Sovereignty” has become a bad word in the mainstream left.

National sovereignty is an essentially defensive concept. It is about staying home and minding one’s own business. It is the opposite of the aggressive nationalism that inspired fascist Italy and Nazi Germany to conquer other countries, depriving them of their national sovereignty.

The confusion is due to the fact that most of what calls itself “the left” in the West has been totally won over to the current form of imperialism – aka “globalization”. It is an imperialism of a new type, centered on the use of military force and “soft” power to enable transnational finance to penetrate every corner of the earth and thus to reshape all societies in the endless quest for profitable return on capital investment. The left has been won over to this new imperialism because it advances under the banner of “human rights” and “antiracism” – abstractions which a whole generation has been indoctrinated to consider the central, if not the only, political issues of our times.

The fact that “sovereignism” is growing in Europe is interpreted by mainstream globalist media as proof that “Europe is moving to the right”– no doubt because Europeans are “racist”. This interpretation is biased and dangerous. People in more and more European nations are calling for national sovereignty precisely because they have lost it. They lost it to the European Union, and they want it back.

That is why the British voted to leave the European Union. Not because they are “racist”, but primarily because they cherish their historic tradition of self-rule.

The Socialist Party shipwreck

As his five-year presidency drew to its ignominious end, François Hollande was obliged by his drastic unpopularity to let his Parti Socialiste (PS) choose its 2017 presidential candidate by primary. In a surprising upset, the Socialist government’s natural candidate, prime minister Manuel Valls, lost to Benoit Hamon, an obscure member of the PS left wing who refused to vote for the unpopular, neo-liberal, anti-labor laws designed by Hollande’s economic advisor, Emmanuel Macron.
To escape from the unpopularity of the PS, Macron formed his own movement, “En Marche!” One after another, Valls, Hollande and other prominent PS leaders are tiptoeing away, leaving Hamon at the helm of the sinking ship. As Hamon justifiably protests against their betrayal, the party bigwigs pledge their support to Emmanuel Macron.

Macron ostentatiously hesitates to welcome his shopworn converts into the fold, fearing that their conversion makes it too obvious that his “En Marche!” is a clone of the right wing of the PS, on the way to becoming the French subsidiary of the U.S. Democratic Party in its Clintonian form. Macron proclaims that he is neither left nor right, as discredited politicians from both left and right jump on his bandwagon, to his embarrassment.

Hamon himself appears to be unaware that the basic cause of the Socialist Party’s shipwreck is its incompatible devotion to two contrary principles: traditional social democracy, and the European Union (EU). Macron, Hollande and their fellow turncoats at least have made their choice: the European Union.

The Twilight of the Traditional Right

The great advantage of Republican candidate François Fillon is that his policies are clear. Unlike Hollande, who tried to disguise his neoliberal policies as something else, and based his claim to be on the left on “societal” issues (gay marriage), Fillon is an unabashed conservative. His policies are designed to reduce the huge national debt. Whereas previous governments (including his own, when he was President Sarkozy’s Prime Minister) beat around the bush, Fillon won the Republican nomination by a program of sharp cutbacks in government spending.

Fillon claims that his austerity measures will lead French capitalists to invest in France and thus save the country’s economy from being completely taken over by foreign corporations, American retirement funds and Qatar. This is highly doubtful, as there is nothing under EU rules to encourage French investors to invest in France rather than somewhere else.
Fillon departs from EU orthodoxy, however, by proposing a more independent foreign policy, notably by ending the “absurd” sanctions against Russian. He is more concerned about the fate of Middle East Christians than about overthrowing Assad.

The upshot is that Fillon’s coherent pro-capitalist policy is not exactly what the dominant globalizing elite prefers. The “center left” is their clear political choice since Tony Blair and Bill Clinton revised the agendas of their respective parties. The center left emphasis on human rights (especially in faraway countries targeted for regime change) and ethnic diversity at home fits the long-term globalist aims of erasing national borders, to allow unrestricted free movement of capital. Traditional patriotic conservatism, represented by Fillon, does not altogether correspond to the international adventurism of globalization.

The Schizophrenic Left

For a generation, the French left has made “the construction of Europe” the center of its world view. In the early 1980s, faced with opposition from what was then the European Community, French President François Mitterrand abandoned the socializing program on which he been elected. Mitterrand nursed the hope that France would politically dominate a united Europe, but the unification of Germany changed all that. So did EU expansion to Eastern Central nations within the German sphere of influence. Economic policy is now made in Germany.

As the traditional left goal of economic equality was abandoned, it was superseded by emphatic allegiance to “human rights”, which is now taught in school as a veritable religion. The vague notion of human rights was somehow associated with the “free movement” of everything and everybody. Indeed the official EU dogma is protection of “free movement”: free movement of goods, people, labor and (last but certainly not least) capital. These “four freedoms” in practice transform the nation from a political society into a financial market, an investment opportunity, run by a bureaucracy of supposed experts. In this way, the European Union has become the vanguard experiment in transforming the world into a single capitalist market.

The French left bought heavily into this ideal, partly because it deceptively echoed the old leftist ideal of “internationalism” (whereas capital has always been incomparably more “international” than workers), and partly due to the simplistic idea that “nationalism” is the sole cause of wars. More fundamental and complex causes of war are ignored.

For a long time, the left has complained about job loss, declining living standards, delocalization or closure of profitable industries, without recognizing that these unpopular results are caused by EU requirements. EU directives and regulations increasingly undermine the French model of redistribution through public services, and are now threatening to wipe them out altogether – either because “the government is bankrupt” or because of EU competition rules prohibit countries from taking measures to preserve their key industries or their agriculture. Rather than face reality, the left’s reaction has mostly been to repeat its worn-out demand for an impossible “Social Europe”.

Yet the dream of “social Europe” received what amounted to a fatal blow ten years ago. In 2005, a referendum was called to allow the French to approve a Constitution for united Europe. This led to an extraordinary popular discussion, with countless meetings of citizens examining every aspect of this lengthy document. Unlike normal constitutions, this document froze the member States in a single monetarist economic policy, with no possibility of change.

On May 29, 2005, French voters rejected the treaty by 55% to 45%.

What seemed to be a great victory for responsible democracy turned into its major failure. Essentially the same document, renamed the Lisbon Treaty, was ratified in December 2007, without a referendum. Global governance had put the people in their place. This produced widespread disillusion with politics as millions concluded that their votes didn’t matter, that politicians paid no attention to the will of the people.

Even so, Socialist politicians continued to pledge undying allegiance to the EU, always with the prospect that “Social Europe” might somehow be possible.

Meanwhile, it has become more and more obvious that EU monetarist policy based on the common currency, the euro, creates neither growth nor jobs as promised but destroys both. Unable to control its own currency, obliged to borrow from private banks, and to pay them interest, France is more and more in debt, its industry is disappearing and its farmers are committing suicide, on the average of one every other day. The left has ended up in an impossible position: unswervingly loyal to the EU while calling for policies that are impossible under EU rules governing competition, free movement, deregulation, budgetary restraints, and countless other regulations produced by an opaque bureaucracy and ratified by a virtually powerless European Parliament, all under the influence of an army of lobbyists.

Benoit Hamon remains firmly stuck on the horns of the left’s fatal dilemma: determination to be “socialist”, or rather, social democratic, and passionate loyalty to “Europe”. While insisting on social policies that cannot possibly be carried out with the euro as currency and according to EU rules, Hamon still proclaims loyalty to “Europe”. He parrots the EU’s made-in-Washington foreign policy, demanding that “Assad must go” and ranting against Putin and Russia.

Jean-Luc Mélenchon Grasps the Nettle

Not only is the drab, conformist Hamon abandoned by his party heavies, he is totally upstaged on the left by the flamboyant Jean-Luc Mélenchon, a maverick ready to break the rules. After years as a PS loyalist, Mélenchon broke away in 2005 to oppose the Constitutional Treaty, gaining prominence as a fiery orator. In 2007, he left the Socialist Party and founded the Parti de Gauche (Left Party). Allied with the much weakened Communist Party, he came in fourth in the first round of the 2012 Presidential election with 11% of the vote. This time he is running for President with his own new movement, La

France Insoumise, which can be translated in a number of ways, including “the France that does not submit”.

Submit to what? Mainly, to the euro and to the antisocial, neoliberal policies of the European Union that are ruining France.

French flags and la Marseillaise have replaced the Internationale at Mélenchon rallies. “The Europe of our dreams is dead,” he acknowledges, vowing to “end the nightmare of dictatorship by banks and finance”.

Mélenchon calls for outright disobedience by violating EU treaties that are harmful to France. That is his Plan A. His Plan B is to leave the EU, in case Plan A fails to convince Germany (the current boss) and the others to agree to change the treaties.

But at best, Plan B is an empty threat to strengthen his hand in theoretical negotiations. France is such a crucial member, he maintains, that a French threat to leave should be enough to force changes.

Threatening to leave the EU is just part of Mélenchon’s vast and complicated program which includes calling a national convention to draft a constitution for France’s “sixth Republic” as well as major ecological innovation. Completely changing both France and the European Union at the same time would require the nation to be in a revolutionary effervescence that is by no means visible. It would also require a unanimity among the EU’s 28 member States that is simply impossible.

But Mélenchon is canny enough to have recognized the basic problem: the enemy of jobs, prosperity and public services is the European Union. Mélenchon is by far the candidate that generates the most excitement. He has rapidly outdistanced Hamon and draws huge enthusiastic crowds to his rallies. His progress has changed the shape of the race: at this moment, he has become one of four front-runners who might get past the first round vote on April 23 into the finals on May 7: Le Pen, Macron, Fillon and himself.

The Opposites are (almost) the Same

A most remarkable feature of this campaign is great similarity between the two candidates said to represent “the far left”, Mélenchon, and “the far right”, Marine Le Pen. Both speak of leaving the euro. Both vow to negotiate with the EU to get better treaty terms for France. Both advocate social policies to benefit workers and low income people. Both want to normalize relations with Russia. Both want to leave NATO, or at least its military command. Both defend national sovereignty, and can thus be described as “sovereignists”.

The only big difference between them is on immigration, an issue that arouses so much emotion that it is hard to discuss sensibly. Those who oppose immigration are accused of “fascism”, those who favor immigration are accused of wanting to destroy the nation’s identity by flooding it with inassimilable foreigners.

In a country suffering from unemployment, without jobs or housing to accommodate mass immigration, and under the ongoing threat of Islamist terror attacks, the issue cannot be reasonably reduced to “racism” – unless Islamic terrorists constitute a “race”, for which there is no evidence. Le Pen insists that all French citizens deserve equal treatment regardless of their origins, race or religion. She is certain to get considerable support from recently nationalized immigrants, just as she now gets a majority of working class votes. If this is “fascism”, it has changed a lot in the past seventy years.

What is significant is that despite their differences, the two most charismatic candidates both speak of restoring national sovereignty. Both evoke the possibility of leaving the European Union, although in rather uncertain terms.

The globalist media are already preparing to blame the eventual election of a “sovereignist” candidate on Vladimir Putin. Public opinion in the West is being prepared for massive protests to break out against an undesired winner, and the “antifa” militants are ready to wreak havoc in the streets. Some people who like Marine Le Pen are afraid of voting for her, fearing the “color revolution” sure to be mounted against her. Mélenchon and even Fillon might face similar problems.

As a taste of things to come, on April 20, the EU Observer published an article entitled “Russia-linked fake news floods French social media”.

Based on something called Bakamo, one of the newly establishment “fact-check” outfits meant to steer readers away from unofficial opinion, the article accused Russian-influenced web sites of favoring Marine Le Pen, Jean-Luc Mélenchon, François Fillon, Francois Asselineau, and Philippe Poutou. (They forgot to mention one of the most “sovereignist” candidates, Nicolas Dupont-Aignan, currently polling in sixth place.)

Since a large majority of the eleven candidates, including three of the four front-runners, are strongly critical of the EU and of NATO and want to improve relations with Russia, it would seem that Putin wouldn’t have to make a great effort to get a more friendly French government next time around. On the other hand, the EU Observer article is only a small sample of blatant “interference in the French election” on the part of the globalists on behalf of their favorite, Emmanuel Macron, the most enthusiastic Europhile.

The Future of France

Among those listed as alleged Russian favorites, François Asselineau is by far the most thorough critic of the European Union. Systematically ignored by the media since he founded his anti-EU party, the Union Populaire Républicain (UPR), ten years ago, François Asselineau has thousands of ardent supporters who have plastered his poster all over the country. His tireless didactic speeches, reproduced on internet, have driven home several key points:

– there is no way to improve the EU from the inside, because any change would require unanimity among 27 member states who disagree on key issues.
– the only solution for France is to use Article 50 of the EU treaties to withdraw entirely, as the United Kingdom is currently doing.
– only by leaving the EU can France save its public services, its social benefits, its economy and its democracy.
– it is only by restoring its national sovereignty that genuine democratic life, with confrontation between a real “left” and “right”, can be possible.
– by leaving the EU, France, which has over 6,000 treaties with other countries, would not be isolated but would be joining the greater world.

Asselineau is a single issue candidate. He vows that as soon as elected, he would invoke Article 50 to leave the EU and immediately apply to Washington to withdraw from NATO. He emphasizes that none of the other critics of the EU propose such a clear exit within the rules.

Other candidates, including the more charismatic Mélenchon and Le Pen, echo some of Asselineau’s arguments. But they are not ready to go so far as to advocate a clear immediate break with the EU, if only because they realize that the French population, while increasingly critical of the euro and alienated from the “European dream”, is still fearful of actually leaving, due to dire warnings of disaster from the Europeists.

The first round campaign is an opportunity for Asselineau to present his ideas to a wider audience, preparing public opinion for a more coherent “Frexit” policy. By far the most fundamental emerging issue in this campaign is the conflict between the European Union and national sovereignty. It will probably not be settled in this election, but it won’t go away.

This is the major issue of the future, because it determines whether any genuine political life is possible.

Donnez-nous Robespierre!    Donnez-nous la guillotine!!!!
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Offline RE

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If Le Pen beats Macron, the once-unthinkable will be all too real
« Reply #9 on: May 05, 2017, 12:20:24 AM »
A 20 point deficit in the Polling would seem pretty impossible to overcome.

However, these days you just don't know WTF the Voters will do once behind the Curtain.  Or what the Hackers will do.

RE

https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/worldviews/wp/2017/05/05/if-le-pen-beats-macron-the-once-unthinkable-will-be-all-too-real/?utm_term=.73eac6c63b84

If Le Pen beats Macron, the once-unthinkable will be all too real
By Ishaan Tharoor May 5 at 1:00 AM


Want smart analysis of the most important news in your inbox every weekday along with other global reads, interesting ideas and opinions to know? Sign up for the Today's WorldView newsletter.

Forget Britain’s vote for Brexit. Forget President Trump’s November win. If Marine Le Pen somehow defeats Emmanuel Macron in France’s presidential runoff vote on Sunday, it may be the biggest electoral shock in the West so far this century.

A win by the leader of the French far right would see a leading European nation select a president emphatically opposed to globalization and integration, friendly to authoritarian Russia and tethered to a party, the National Front, that is steeped in a history of neo-fascism, extremism and bigotry. It could prefigure the dissolution of the European Union, trigger new economic chaos and hammer home the last nail in the coffin of an already ailing liberal order.

A Le Pen victory “means the collapse of the E.U., because the E.U. without France doesn’t make any sense,” Gerard Araud, France’s ambassador in Washington, said in a conversation with Today’s WorldView earlier this year. “And it means the collapse of the euro and a financial crisis, which will have consequences throughout the world.”

It’s still an unlikely outcome. Polls place Macron ahead of Le Pen by roughly 20 points with just a few days to go. Most observers thought he was the clear victor in an ill-tempered Wednesday night debate. But Macron’s supporters — and anyone who seeks the preservation of the European project — have good reason to feel jittery.

Reports suggest that many disaffected French voters across the political spectrum may abstain. Those voters already rejected France’s traditional conservative and center-left parties amid a tidal wave of public dissatisfaction. Macron’s boosters see his independent movement — known by its slogan “En Marche,” or “Onward” — as an opportunity to rejuvenate the country with a new “radical centrism.” His critics, principally Le Pen, but also some on the left, cast the former banker as an out-of-touch member of the financial elite beholden to tired neo-liberal dogma.

A video endorsement of Macron from former U.S. president Barack Obama may not help things. After all, Obama’s overt support for Britain’s Remainers last year — as well as a warning that Britain would suffer economically if it left the E.U., interpreted by some as a threat — did not prevent the Leave camp from winning. And it further cements the unhelpful analogy that Macron is the Hillary Clinton to Le Pen’s Trump, the custodian of an unpopular status quo.

Even in defeat, Le Pen is projected to win millions more votes than did her father, Jean-Marie Le Pen, when he unexpectedly made the presidential runoff in 2002. That year, the French formed a “Republican Front” of both conservative and left-of-center voters who rallied against the candidate with a fascist past.

But the situation in 2017 is different. The younger Le Pen has spent years bringing the National Front into the mainstream. Voters, moreover, are ready for radical change.

“There was no element of surprise this time,” Dominique Moïsi, a French political scientist, said to my colleague James McAuley. “In 2002, people were genuinely shocked by the fact that someone like Jean-Marie Le Pen could actually reach power. This time, everybody expected it.”

 

McAuley, the Paris correspondent for The Post, spoke to left-leaning protesters who rallied in the French capital on May Day.

“For years, the right and left just divided the Republic with their disputes, and now there is little left,” said 57-year-old Hamid Djodi while standing in the Place de la République. “In 2002, we believed it, this idea of a ‘Republican Front.’ But now we don’t believe it anymore — all you have is a capitalist running against a ­fascist.”

This disillusionment is most apparent in the rhetoric of leftist presidential candidate Jean-Luc Mélenchon, who won close to 20 percent of the first-round vote. While denouncing Le Pen, he has refused to endorse Macron, who served briefly in the Socialist government of President François Hollande and implemented reforms criticized by the left. A poll this week found that some 65 percent of Mélenchon voters would not vote for the centrist candidate, preferring to spoil their ballots or not turn up at all.

The abstention rate in the second round is expected to be the highest in French history. Meanwhile, a significant proportion of voters on the French right may opt for Le Pen.

But even if Le Pen charts a narrow path to victory, her battle will only really begin the day after the election.

Based on conversations with senior politicians and advisers to France’s major parties, including the National Front, Politico Europe’s Nicholas Vinocur imagined what Le Pen’s first 100 days would look like. It would begin likely with riots in some of the country’s alienated minority suburbs, as well as chaos in the markets and a potential banking crisis. And then things could really get crazy.

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Le Pen, in a bid to appeal to a broader swath of the country, would fill her cabinet with officials from various conservative factions. But that may not help her in France’s legislative elections in June. The National Front holds just one seat in the National Assembly, and the country’s main parties have vowed to stymie a potential President Le Pen through their parliamentary clout. The prospect of “cohabitation” — when the president and the prime minister, who heads the government, represent two different parties — would be all the more likely.
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Le Pen, writes Vinocur, could be “condemned to kibitzing the government while signing executive decrees” on matters ranging from immigration to the process of quitting the European Union. “But decrees would be open to legal challenges from lower courts,” he notes. “Le Pen would spend much of her first 100 days locked in legal disputes, imposing executive will whenever possible.” (Where have we seen this before?)

The more dire scenarios, according to Vinocur, could see Le Pen dissolve Parliament or even invoke an article in the constitution that allows the president full control at a moment when the nation is deemed to be under extreme existential threat. But that, Macron and others in Europe could argue, is what Le Pen already represents.
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Re: The French are Fried
« Reply #10 on: May 05, 2017, 01:06:48 AM »
Oh, by the way, with Macron leading LePen by 20%, none of the above WaPo scenarios are going to happen.  But let's talk about it as if it is going to - that's good journalism.  Yes, let's talk about what will happen in her first 100 days.  Some ignorant hack at Politico has said "It would begin likely with riots in some of the country’s alienated minority suburbs, as well as chaos in the markets and a potential banking crisis. And then things could really get crazy."

A Le Pen victory “means the collapse of the E.U., because the E.U. without France doesn’t make any sense,” Gerard Araud, France’s ambassador in Washington, said in a conversation with Today’s WorldView earlier this year. “And it means the collapse of the euro and a financial crisis, which will have consequences throughout the world.”

I think the WaPo idea is that we can all heave a huge sigh of relief when the totally bleedin' obvious happens and the "socialist banker" wins - a financial crisis averted.
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Re: The French are Fried
« Reply #11 on: May 05, 2017, 01:17:11 AM »
I thought it was an entertaining scenario projection.  Sorta like El Trumpsky on steroids.  ;D

It's HIGHLY unlikely in this go round.  However, Macron and his Bankster Backers will fail to make any improvements in the Frog Economy, things will only get worse.  Le Pen then capitalizes on that failure and revs up her Nazi backers some more.  2 years from now, snap elections are called.  Who do you think wins then?

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