Monday, May 14, 2012

Hollande's Economic Convictions

Mediapart purports to explain François Hollande's economic convictions by examining the record of his engagements as party leader, but the article ends in a rather crude indictment:
Dans cette dérive libérale, la responsabilité de Lionel Jospin est donc considérable – même s’il ne voudra jamais la regarder en face et refuse toujours, dix ans plus tard, de tirer un bilan lucide de la terrible débâcle de 2002. Comme l’est la responsabilité de Laurent Fabius et de Dominique Strauss-Kahn, qui ont lourdement contribué à couper le PS de son électorat populaire. Mais François Hollande a aussi sa part de responsabilité, même si elle est moindre. Très fortement solidaire de cette époque, il n'a d'ailleurs jamais aimé que l'on porte un regard critique sur les années Jospin.
 The article does note, however, that Hollande's whole approach to economic policy is more that of a manager than of an economic thinker. His basic education in economics was acquired at the business school HEC. In normal times, the pragmatic orientation of managerialism might be an asset, an immunization against the populist or workerist sirens to which Mediapart would prefer to see the new president succumb. But these are not normal times, and a more thorough grasp of the macroeconomic consequences of the available policy choices would be desirable in a president whose first challenge will be to persuade Frau Merkel that she is a victim of the paradox of thrift.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Hollande must have changed his mind on economics since either his HEC years or his Jospin years. In the 2000's, he'd never have advocated growth. sure, he's still prudent etc, etc, but a small step forward then another small step are better than nothing. And the choice truly was that or nothing.
Jospin, Fabius, and DSK are the guilty parties; I don't understand the prestige they still carry in some circles. Although, DSK, not so much, and Jospin, at least at the grassroots level, seems altogether disliked. Seeing Jospin parading on TV for the past week has shocked my French friends, who voted for the PS but expressed actual ANGER every time they saw him! (And weirdly, whatever group I was with, the reaction was always the same "Mais tais-toi" or "mais qu'il se taise!")