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French Elections

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Sarkozy wins, Socialists and leftists riot (probably because he wants to end the 35 hour work-week and reduce the role of government). Does anyone think Royal had anything to do with this, she said last week that if he won there would be violence? Anyway, France seems to be moving in the right direction if only they could stop these rioters from destroying the little private property people can have.

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I am not OVERLY familiar with this man... for what it's worth, my French professor labelled him, "somewhat of a fascist" ... then again, that might not be worth much, considering my French professor is from France. But there you go, a French perspective on the guy.

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I don't know much about the guy. He said America could count on France as an ally, which is great, but he also said America shouldn't hold back in the effort to fight invisible monsters *cough* I mean, global warming. The sense I get of the guy is really good, though, and I really disliked Royal.

Oh, another thing - he's strongly against anti-immigration. While I don't think that's the solution to the massive amounts of unemployable N. Africans in France, I'm glad he sees it as a problem (and not one that's solved with big government programs).

On a related topic - I found

amusing. It's Tony Blair's public welcome of Sarkozy onto the the world scene. I thought it was really cool that he did it on YouTube instead of in the mainstream media, and it's really funny hearing him try to speak French. He does a good job, from what I can tell, but he starts out (something like, as this is my translation), "Hello everyone, I've decided to risk addressing you in French, although it may have been a very bad idea..."

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Oh, another thing - he's strongly against anti-immigration. While I don't think that's the solution to the massive amounts of unemployable N. Africans in France, I'm glad he sees it as a problem (and not one that's solved with big government programs).
The devil's in the details, but consider this: people like good immigrants who want to work, and poor people who want to start somewhere and work their way up, are the ones who suffer most under French style laws. They are the ones who are sacrificed for the sake of the people who stay in the same neighborhoods, but have a different set of values. If the new government can throw out the 35 hour week and (probably more important) move to a system of "at will" hiring of employees, the good people among the immigrants and the poor will be the ones who will benefit the most. Under tight laws like France has businesses and jobs are constrained; when the job market is tight, there is much more pressure on Pierre to give the opening to his wife's second cousin rather than to the immigrant kid who does seem to deserve it.

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I've just read a couple of articles about the guy, but it sounds like he might be the French version of Thatcher or Reagan.

Really? I just thought he'd be socialist lite. Do you have links to information about him that would suggest genuine beliefs in political and economic freedom?

I am not OVERLY familiar with this man... for what it's worth, my French professor labelled him, "somewhat of a fascist" ... then again, that might not be worth much, considering my French professor is from France. But there you go, a French perspective on the guy.

Oh my! Sarkozy might be a hero!

Oh, another thing - he's strongly against anti-immigration. While I don't think that's the solution to the massive amounts of unemployable N. Africans in France, I'm glad he sees it as a problem (and not one that's solved with big government programs).

True, but France does have a serious immigration problem unlike America. France's immigration is largely Muslim and they are becoming militant and are taking over the nation. They have to find a way to filter out the harmful elements of their immigrant population.

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It seems clear to me Sarkozy is the lesser evil. It remains to be seen how much less.

Remember the French "right" under Chirac instituted things like the 35 hour work week, and the nationalizations of banks and industry begaun under de gaulle.

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I had always seen France as much like Brazil, where even the "right wing" parties are socialist parties. From what I have read about Sarkozy, he seems to be something else entirely. Not an integrated rational classic liberal by a long shot, but orders of magnitude better than anyone in Brazil's current political spectrum. I'm happy for France.

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The fact that a pathetic character like Royal received as much support as she did speaks volumes about the depth to which French politics have sunk. The first thing Sarkozy should do is burn every book written by a French philosopher during the last 150 years. ;)

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The fact that a pathetic character like Royal received as much support as she did speaks volumes about the depth to which French politics have sunk. The first thing Sarkozy should do is burn every book written by a French philosopher during the last 150 years. ;)

I am not OVERLY familiar with this man... for what it's worth, my French professor labelled him, "somewhat of a fascist" ... then again, that might not be worth much, considering my French professor is from France. But there you go, a French perspective on the guy.

Might be bad for PR...

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Sorry guys, I think I threw a monkey wrench of confusion into this thread when I said he's "strongly against anti-immigration," by which I meant he's "strongly against immigration" or, alternatively, "anti-immigrantion."

To clear up - I take the position that unlimited immigration is a good thing if it's legal, and Sarko seems to want to cut off immigration. I agree with sNerd that strict labor laws are terrible for the people on the bottom and might be helpful for Pierre's cousin - and I think Sarko is the kind of guy who probably wants to do away with the 35-hour week (I've read quotes of him to that extent), but probably isn't so concerned about doing what will help Fatou if it's not going to be good for Pierre's cousin.

It's interesting that, contrary to popular opinion and what I myself thought recently, France isn't a nation where the right-wingers are "lite socialists" like in, say, Sweden. They've truly got the full political spectrum - but the left tends to have a lot more influence than in America. Le Pen is a strong right-winger, even by our standards, who wants a return to traditional values; he's never going to get into France's political mainstream, but he's seen a lot more support than most would expect, and there's definitely a strong right-wing tendency in France these days (hence Sarko's election).

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Sorry guys, I think I threw a monkey wrench of confusion into this thread when I said he's "strongly against anti-immigration," by which I meant he's "strongly against immigration" or, alternatively, "anti-immigrantion."
I assumed that's what you meant.

It's interesting that, contrary to popular opinion and what I myself thought recently, France isn't a nation where the right-wingers are "lite socialists" like in, say, Sweden. They've truly got the full political spectrum - but the left tends to have a lot more influence than in America. Le Pen is a strong right-winger, even by our standards, who wants a return to traditional values; he's never going to get into France's political mainstream, but he's seen a lot more support than most would expect, and there's definitely a strong right-wing tendency in France these days (hence Sarko's election).
My knowledge of French politics and history is limited, but isn't there a fairly strong tendency toward Fascism among the right in France? De Gaulle seemed to have Fascist tendencies, but that's just my perception and it may be based on Socialist rhetoric that I've read over the years as opposed to reality. Edited by gags

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One scary thing, though, is that he cried out for the US to 'lead the fight against global warming'

makes me gag.

doh, I now see thats already been covered. ;)

Edited by bobsponge

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Really? I just thought he'd be socialist lite. Do you have links to information about him that would suggest genuine beliefs in political and economic freedom?
Yes, he's socialist. What I meant by him being a French Thatcher/Reagan is that he appears to want to change the direction of economic policy. His solution is to undo some socialist policies, rather than more of the same old approaches. Moreover, his message is not "more intelligent socialist policy" (in the Clinton mold), where he'll do more of the same and a little reluctant rolling back; rather he is vocal about rolling back socialist policy. Ther also appears to be a sense of "grow the pie" optimism about him.

Nevertheless, the point of to which he might roll it back would remain left of the US and UK.

If you want to read up, the FT is a good source. They currently have an "in-depth" section, with lots of articles.

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Wow, I thought the student protesters actually might have some decent reasons for opposing Sarkozy's new policies, but hidden inside the Rueters article on Drudgereport all I could find was:

"Sarkozy has promised to make higher education reform a priority and wants to introduce a law before the end of the summer to give universities more autonomy, handing them power to hire and fire staff, set salaries and manage their assets." Also something about encouraging vocational training.

Wait they are going to allow schools (that we attend for free) to manage themselves.......let's f*** up some cars!

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