An American observer comments on French politics.
I liked this: "the Socialist party leadership has became a bunch of feckless losers having a good time unencumbered by a serious collective will to win and to govern."However, I don't agree that DSK is a tragedy for the left or French democracy. DSK had serious flaws which everyone in the PS was willing to overlook for reasons of political expediency. In short, to win. Willingness to make such compromises might once have been thought to show a streak of political pragmatism in the PS. However, it seems that DSK was in actuality already a compromise to the party's core values at a number of levels. The whole thing was thus arguably an il-advised charade even before the Sofitel debacle.That surely why the party is now more than ever in so much disarray. What does the PS stand for? And for whom?
Yes, the “feckless losers” bit is amusing, as is the caricature as a whole. But it’s only a caracture, and he repeats the old canard (as I see it) about the FN drawing its voters from the Communists. Nor is it clear that the left will be DSK’s victim. Of course he has let them down terribly, but polls now show Hollande beating Sarkozy in the first round. Those numbers will change, but it’s a tiny bit early yet to be declaring defeat, as Tiersky seems eager to do.
Neither the right nor the left in France represent the 'real people' as far as I can tell. Both parties have power which is generally not accessible to those who are not in the inner sanctum sanctus and thus are reluctant to risk losing it. Many want to work as long as they wish--a desire that cannot be put through a meat grinding set of laws obliging all to retire at some age that defies today's life expectancy or an out-of-date law for coal workers on the trains. We all like free medicine but would like our doctors accountable too. France, as has much of Western Europe, has become a land of rules and regulations that impedes progress and drowns out the voices of talented individuals from both sides of the political spectrum that bring about change...In any case, I agree with the bottom line of the editorial--namely, we will have Sarko for another term while the socialists reposition themselves. I suggest they put their current crop of seniors into early retirement and move a bit to the right on some issues while standing for fairness on all issues.
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