Saturday, December 26, 2009

"The Choice of the Old"

Emmanuel Todd:

La poussée à droite de 2007, à la suite des émeutes de banlieue de 2005, n'était pas une confrontation sur l'immigration, mais davantage un ressentiment anti-jeunes exprimé par une population qui vieillit. N'oublions pas que Sarkozy est l'élu des vieux.


FrédéricLN said...

"l'élu des vieux." That is statistically correct, around 75% of seniors chose Sarkozy against Royal (but a strong minority of younger citizens did, too!)

As I disagree with Todd on around 50% of what he writes, I specifically disagree on "n'était pas une confrontation sur l'immigration". The "youth" as such has never been a point in the 2006-2007 political debate.

An hypothesis : seniors (60+) have become more liberal (in the sense of individualists, self-indulgent, emotions-driven), as a social group, quite suddenly in the mid-90s. Quite simultaneously, the put fences to protect their privacy from the pressure of social / societal concerns - the country has a whole would not be their piece of cake any more.

This was quite in accordance with Sarkozy's very defensive campaign - he would protect our "national identity" from unnamed outer threats.

Said another way : the demographic correlation between Sarkozy vote and age, is no evidence at all that Sarkozy vote would express anti-youth feelings.

(the signature links to my analysis of 2007 vote motivations)

MYOS said...

I found it hilarious that retired people voted for "work more, earn more" - in effect, saying "young'uns, work harder to pay my pension".
Based on what I've seen of the so-called Identity Debates, it looks like "youth" and "hoodlums" are synonymous for many old/er people, and somehow, the way they talk, it seems as if all of them have darker skin colors.
Todd's analysis provides an interesting context to Nadine Morano's musulmans à casquette comment, though.

Justin said...

Two years ago, Vincent Tiberj gave an excellent but too seldom noticed analysis of the 2007 vote, La Crispation hexagonale ( Basically, the right / left rapport de force on traditional socio-economic issues didn't change but Sarko used the immigration / jeunes theme to his advantage, especially among the oldest.

MYOS said...

Another view upon that Todd Interview:

MYOS said...

One more very interesting article:

from which I excerpt:
"Mais comment ne pas voir que la société française participe tous les jours à un référendum contre les "jeunes à capuche" ? (...) cette catégorie sociale cristallise, à tort ou à raison, une triple angoisse dans notre société vieillissante : la jeunesse, l'immigration et l'islam. (...)
Un chiffre témoigne de la gravité de cette coupure : dans les zones urbaines sensibles (ZUS), 41,7 % des hommes de 15 à 24 ans sont au chômage, soit le double de la moyenne nationale pour les garçons du même âge, déjà très élevée par rapport au reste de l'Europe.

Un tel niveau de discriminations traduit un choix collectif, pas simplement une accumulation d'accidents ou de dérives individuelles. Nous ne sommes pas dans le "fait divers" de la discrimination mais bien dans un phénomène de société (...)

Further, I'd posit that virtually ALL youth are ill-treated in France. Hopelessness is taught, as is resignation. I've been told again and again that kids should not aim too high. I'm enraged when I hear perfectly nice educators explain "why bother, they'll never go much further", when these kids are smart and interesting and full of energy, if a bit lazy school-wise (but most 14-15 year old boys are). As annoying as those ubiquitous educational/inspirational banners can be, they do point to the possibility of a different future, to opportunities to seize, of a path you can choose.
BTW, I was not visiting a ZUS or a ZEP, I was in random schools around the provinces.

MYOS said...

*"these ubiquitous inspirational banners" referred to the banners found in American schools. No such banners in France.