Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Aubry vs. Hollande

Rue89 says Martine has it in for François. Her grievances include clogged toilets at rue Solférino. I can see that this is going to be an edifying battle. Do I have a dog in this race? Frankly, no, and perhaps this will make me more objective than I was in the case of DSK. In retrospect, I think I was unduly impressed by the polls and simply assumed he would be the strongest candidate of the left, despite my (serious) misgivings about his skills as a retail politician, which should have given me more pause. Not only that, but I'm asking myself exactly why I credited him with "competence" not possessed by other potential candidates. Exactly what his distinctive views on the economy were I couldn't say. At the IMF he favored expansive monetary and fiscal policy, but that was a relatively easy call for anyone not afflicted with the professional blindness of a European central banker. So: lesson learned. Scrutinize policy more closely, consider character more fully, and pay attention to the ability to appeal to voters. On the last point, I don't think either Aubry or Hollande has shown much. On character, Royal accused Aubry of stealing the leadership election, and there may well have been something to the charge; Hollande may have helped cover up Tristane Banon's allegations against DSK, and both probably knew about them. On policy, I don't yet see much to choose between them. Hollande has been the more diligent campaigner, however.

4 comments:

Christelle Nadia said...

Don't worry, Art, you won't have to choose for neither one of them will be the PS candidate in 2012!!!!

Arthur Goldhammer said...

Who will be, Christelle?

Christelle Nadia said...

I don't know, but this feels like the democratic primaries of 1992. These two are not up to it and are going to bloody each other up and somebody else will emerge.

meshplate said...

Art, I like the candor of your self-assessment of your unthought through feelings for DSK. I also felt he was, as it were, your "chéri," and couldn't quite see what his appeal was other than 1) not being Sarko, and 2) representing somehow an "adult" choice, Always been rather suspicious of that. What does it mean after all? A distanced perspective on politics from a "dispassionate" centrist economist?