Monday, February 27, 2017

La Désunion de la Gauche

As predicted, Jean-Luc Mélenchon has rejected further "negotiations" with Benoît Hamon, so what's left of the left will go into the general election divided. Instead of a Socialist Party and a nebulous formation to its left, we now have two versions of the suddenly popular "eco-socialist" strain of gauchisme, to one version of which the disintegrating Green party has now lent its feeble support.

One version of eco-socialism, Hamon's, envisions the end of work and the robotization of everything in a positive light, as a step toward the end of productivism and humble acceptance of whatever it takes to live in harmony with nature. The European Union will be persuaded to go along with this lenifying vision of a brighter tomorrow by the addition of an Upper Chamber, and everyone will dine out à la bonne franquette on their Universal Basic Income.

The other, Mélenchon's, will do away with the European Union, abolish unemployment within the well-protected borders of the Hexagon, and compensate for any loss of competitiveness with imports of cheap oil and gas supplied on friendly terms by the comrades in Venezuela and Russia.

On L'Emission politique the other night Mélenchon fiercely defended his saber-toothed version of eco-socialism against poor François Lenglet, who tried to illustrate the flaws of open-economy Keynesianism with a pair of Adidas sneakers. "They're a product of exploitation," Mélenchon snarled, skirting the point in his characteristic "the best defense is a barking offense" manner.

And so the contest for the number two slot and the right to contest the presidency with Mme Le Pen will pass by default to MM Macron and Fillon, the latter hauling after him a heavy cargo of casseroles from Penelopegate and the former frantically treading the water he formerly walked on before stumbling over a crime against humanity.

If the gods are smiling on France, one of the latter two will be its next president; otherwise, Trump's friend Jim may soon be returning to a Paris restored to the glory it enjoyed between June 1940 and June 1944.


bernard said...

Macron offended Le Pen's electorate, so? On the other hand, Sarkozy back in 2007 gained a significant fraction of the "North African immigrant" far from insignificant French electorate. It could be the case that Macron was actually talking to this electorate, if somewhat clumsily.

Mitch Guthman said...

I find this very decision by JLM to be absolutely incomprehensible and totally indefensible. What was JLM’s thinking when he put the kibosh on the PS’s best chance of getting into the second round against MLP? The man is truly the Ralph Nader of France.

Alexandra Marshall said...

I SO AGREE Mitch. Who is this old turkey with his ludicrous stunts? I even question your Nader metaphor, though JLM is absolutely playing the egomaniac spoiler. At least Nader really earned the love of baby boomers of Americans for his career as an effective consumer advocate. Melenchon has made a lot of sassy speeches. He's not Nader, he's Jill Stein with a hologram that was an eye-roll already back in 2005.

Rédaction Contreligne said...

Very good analysis of the corbynization of the French left. Neither Hamon nor Mélenchon will be elected. One thing could be said in favor of Mélenchon: he is strange man in many respects and has strange views on many topics, but he is not stupid and probably has a better sense of his responsibility than Hamon, a "gentil pion de collège" (a bland high school teaching assistant). By maintaining his candidacy, Mélenchon knows that he makes impossible for Hamon to reach the secound round, but he also knows that this makes impossible a Le Pen / Hamon, which will certainly lead to Le Pen's victory - a catastrophy that anyone rational wants to avoid at all costs.