French elections

French elections

Marseil
Marseil

April 3rd, 2012, 12:13 pm #1

If anyone here is interested in the upcoming French presidential and parliament elections (1st round in less than three weeks now), here is a good article that sums up most of it.

http://www.economist.com/node/21551461

Dpn't hesitate to come back with questions, remarks, etc.

Marseil.
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Nat
Joined: January 1st, 1970, 12:00 am

April 3rd, 2012, 3:20 pm #2

Well this article confirms the view most Americans have that France is too socialistic which is stifling it's success in the competitive world markets of today. Those who say the US is too socialistic should note that the US is the least socialistic of all the countries mentioned. Our(the US) problem is not social spending as much as the trillions we squander on foreign wars. If France did that it would be in even worse shape.

. . . . .
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Bob
Bob

April 4th, 2012, 4:56 pm #3

If anyone here is interested in the upcoming French presidential and parliament elections (1st round in less than three weeks now), here is a good article that sums up most of it.

http://www.economist.com/node/21551461

Dpn't hesitate to come back with questions, remarks, etc.

Marseil.
Certainly France is not alone in running a deficit and national debt, and the possible remedies being discussed are not unique either. As in my own country, there is the debate about whether to cut govt spending and/or raise taxes. From the article, it appears that raising taxes is the more politically tolerable option in France (whereas in U.S., it tends to be cutting govt spending that rank-and-file Americans favor . . at least until their favorite program is to be cut). My impression is that French taxes are already high, as are taxes in any European country that supports an impression social welfare system. If that is true, how much more can taxes be raised there? (I just saw on the news two days ago that U.S. now has the highest corporate tax rate "in the industrialized world" at 39+% -- that obviously includes France, so where do the high tax revenues come from .. . from the average French citizen?)

The other familiar comment in the article is that French workers get paid excessive wages. Again, many Americans say the same about American workers. To be compettive, they say, workers need to accept less . . or see their jobs continue to be out-sourced to lower-wage countries. Is the same said about French workers?

It seems funny to me how workers' pay is allegedly too great . . but (at least in U.S.), the pay of top execs and the profits of large corporations continue to be HUGE . . . and the % of the country's wealth held by a few people continues to increase and increase. So, where is the REAL problem? Is it REALLY the "little guy" worker who is greedy and expects too much . . or is it REALLY the wealthy bosses and their companies that have been way too greedy and have the bank balances, spread sheets and stock portfolios to prove it? I think the latter.

Marseil, what is your take on all this, as it regards France? . . the European Union?
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Nat
Joined: January 1st, 1970, 12:00 am

April 5th, 2012, 2:18 am #4

That 39% corporate tax rate is a joke Bob- there are so many special credits and loop-holes that hardly any companies pay that. Some pay none at all. Thats the problem- our political system has become so corrupt that those with money can literately "buy" the laws and regulations they want to enable them to get even richer- and the public be damned!

In the last 30 years I've seen countless rules and regulations in my business that were put in place for the good of the public repealed because big chain broadcasters went to Congress money in hand to get these laws repealed. One example is the rules that use to limit how many stations one company could own- it was there to insure that monopolies wouldn't control the industry and put small local stations out of business. Now there are virtually no limits and big chains come in and buy up all the locally owned stations so instead of local owners providing programming tailors to local needs- you get robot stations that relay some satellite feed out of NY or LA and doesn't care beans about what the local market needs.

The same thing happens in just about every other business as well. As soon as a small company begins to have some success it is gobbled up by some big conglomerate- invariably resulting in lost jobs and higher prices. Antitrust laws are a joke now. We have the best politicians money can buy.

. . . . .
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Marseil
Marseil

April 25th, 2012, 7:19 am #5

Well this article confirms the view most Americans have that France is too socialistic which is stifling it's success in the competitive world markets of today. Those who say the US is too socialistic should note that the US is the least socialistic of all the countries mentioned. Our(the US) problem is not social spending as much as the trillions we squander on foreign wars. If France did that it would be in even worse shape.

. . . . .
The first round took place last Sunday, with the following results:

1. F Hollande, Socialist party - 28.6%
2. N Sarkozy, UMP (Union pour un Mouvement Populaire - Union for a Popular Movement), traditional right, incumbent - 27.2%
3. M le Pen, National Front, extreme right - 17.9%
4. JL Melenchon, Leftist Front, extreme left - 11.1%
5. F Bayrou, Democrat Movement, centrist - 9.1%
6. Five other candidates

My remarks:
. For the first time, the incumbent does not come in the first place in the 1st round of a presidential election,
. The core issue is the level of the extreme right at almost 28%
. The other issue is that when you add Le Pen and Melenchon, and a couple smaller ones, you're over 30%, showing that a third of the voters support positions that are totally economically unrealistic, and extremely anti-European.

This does not demonstrate we have too much socialism, but too little education. History is not properly taught, and citizens, especially the younger ones, do not understand the risks associated with the ascension of fascism. Also Economy is not properly taught as a third of the population does not want to understand the fundamentals of economics.

A not too bad article in English is herehttp://www.theaustralian.com.au/news/wo ... 6337897189

Marseil.

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Bob
Bob

April 25th, 2012, 8:01 pm #6

I think these labels on peopple's viewpoints are not only inaccurate but unhelpful. Why is wanting adherence to immigration laws "extreme" anything? Why is wanting to become more insulated from events that occur a thousand or more miles away "extreme"?

The article notes France's unemployment woes . . do you think admitting more people into a countru helps the employment stats? I think it would worsen them. And, does it help or hurt a country to have sizable portions of the population to whom French culture and laguage means little? Again, I think it hurts that country's stability and solidarity.

World leaders have drug their populations into the illusion (now realized) of properity through globalism. What we have seen since the economic collapse of 2008-2009 has been that globalization can hurt as well as help a country's economy. I bet a lot of people in Western countries wish they were as insulated as Brazil is . . . Brazil hasn't gone through the crisis that so many other countries have becaquse they didn't buy into globalization. Is Brazilian leadership "extreme"? Is so, I think extremism can be very beneficial.
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Marseil
Marseil

April 26th, 2012, 9:16 pm #7

The first round took place last Sunday, with the following results:

1. F Hollande, Socialist party - 28.6%
2. N Sarkozy, UMP (Union pour un Mouvement Populaire - Union for a Popular Movement), traditional right, incumbent - 27.2%
3. M le Pen, National Front, extreme right - 17.9%
4. JL Melenchon, Leftist Front, extreme left - 11.1%
5. F Bayrou, Democrat Movement, centrist - 9.1%
6. Five other candidates

My remarks:
. For the first time, the incumbent does not come in the first place in the 1st round of a presidential election,
. The core issue is the level of the extreme right at almost 28%
. The other issue is that when you add Le Pen and Melenchon, and a couple smaller ones, you're over 30%, showing that a third of the voters support positions that are totally economically unrealistic, and extremely anti-European.

This does not demonstrate we have too much socialism, but too little education. History is not properly taught, and citizens, especially the younger ones, do not understand the risks associated with the ascension of fascism. Also Economy is not properly taught as a third of the population does not want to understand the fundamentals of economics.

A not too bad article in English is herehttp://www.theaustralian.com.au/news/wo ... 6337897189

Marseil.
You should read this article (and the attached comments) from the excellent Open democracy website:
http://www.opendemocracy.net/philippe-m ... -voters-do

Marseil.
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Marseil
Marseil

April 26th, 2012, 9:26 pm #8

I think these labels on peopple's viewpoints are not only inaccurate but unhelpful. Why is wanting adherence to immigration laws "extreme" anything? Why is wanting to become more insulated from events that occur a thousand or more miles away "extreme"?

The article notes France's unemployment woes . . do you think admitting more people into a countru helps the employment stats? I think it would worsen them. And, does it help or hurt a country to have sizable portions of the population to whom French culture and laguage means little? Again, I think it hurts that country's stability and solidarity.

World leaders have drug their populations into the illusion (now realized) of properity through globalism. What we have seen since the economic collapse of 2008-2009 has been that globalization can hurt as well as help a country's economy. I bet a lot of people in Western countries wish they were as insulated as Brazil is . . . Brazil hasn't gone through the crisis that so many other countries have becaquse they didn't buy into globalization. Is Brazilian leadership "extreme"? Is so, I think extremism can be very beneficial.
What is currently happening in France is perfectly described in literature:

. You may want to read "Rhinoceros", a play by Eugène Ionesco
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rhinoceros_(play)
A large part of the text is available on line athttp://books.google.fr/books?id=Q9zm8v7 ... &q&f=false
Or the paper version is available from Amazon with the ISBN 0802130984

. More recent, a very short novel "Brown Morning" by Franck Pavloff
A bit more details athttp://uwpress.wisc.edu/books/3793.htm and seemingly you can also order it there.

Marseil.

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Bob
Bob

April 27th, 2012, 1:30 am #9

the message of your references is: France has succumbed to the "plague" of conformity, as "evidenced by" 18% of French voters casting votes for Marie le Pen, the feared "extreme right" candidate. This conformity, allegedly based in fear of differences, you apparently believe (but don't me put words in your mouth) underlies most of the woes of your country. Do I understand correctly? If not, then spell it out for this dumb American.
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Bob
Bob

April 27th, 2012, 1:35 am #10

You should read this article (and the attached comments) from the excellent Open democracy website:
http://www.opendemocracy.net/philippe-m ... -voters-do

Marseil.
But from the link . . . my guess . . . le Pen supporters will not want to vote for either remaining candidate. If they do vote, it might be like the votes of many Americans, who ask themselves "Who is the least worst candidate?" and then bite their lip and shake their heads as they make the no-win selection. That is what the 2012 U.S. Presidential election will be for me . . that is, if I even bother to vote.
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