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Home / Tag Archives: Art Goldhammer: French Politics

Tag Archives: Art Goldhammer: French Politics

Lucidity and Brain-Death

Share the post "Lucidity and Brain-Death" Yesterday I had harsh words for Emmanuel Macron. Today I must pay respect: à tout seigneur, tout honneur. About yesterday’s post a friend commented, “Yes, but there is no alternative.” And that is the Macron problem in a nutshell: there is no alternative, either domestically or, as the president demonstrated in his interview with The Economist, published yesterday, internationally. What other Western leader is thinking and...

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Jupiter Redux

Share the post "Jupiter Redux" It will be difficult, I anticipate, to strike the right tone with this post. I do not want to suggest that the continued influx of immigrants from very poor countries is not a problem for France. This morning’s report of the appalling conditions in one of the many roadside camps on the outskirts of Paris makes clear, moreover, that there is a problem not only for France but also for the migrants, who, at great peril to themselves, have...

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Raphaël Enthoven

Share the post "Raphaël Enthoven" Raphaël Enthoven was invited to address Marion Maréchal Le Pen’s nascent movement/party/LePenist fifth-column within the far right–whatever you want to call it. He took the occasion to challenge the New Right to its face. Alexander Hurst translated his remarks, which you can read here. Thanks to Alexander for calling this to my attention. Tags: Far right, Rassemblement National, Enthoven Share the post "Raphaël Enthoven"...

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Jacques Chirac

Share the post "Jacques Chirac" Jacques Chirac’s political career spans the time I have been closely watching French politics. He was first elected to the Assemblée Nationale in 1967, after serving as President Georges Pompidou’s personal fixer: Pompidou called him the “bulldozer.” It was Chirac who was sent out, pistol in pocket, to negotiate with PCF and union leaders at the height of the ’68 general strike. The tough guy with a cigarette dangling from his lips and a...

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“Grenelle” galvaudé

Share the post "“Grenelle” galvaudé" France is currently conducting a “Grenelle des violences conjugales,” the latest in a long series of “Grenelles.” Young folks may not know the origin of this peculiar appellation for a political form to which the French are peculiarly drawn. Here is some background. The word comes to us from the “Accords de Grenelle” of 1968. The word “Grenelle” refers to the rue de Grenelle, which happens to be the seat of the Ministry of Labor. In...

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Showing Some Moix-ie

Share the post "Showing Some Moix-ie" Moxie (U.S. slang): “force of character, determination, nerve.” Or chutzpah, one might say, as Yann Moix, the avowed (ex?) anti-Semite who claims to have abjured his former prejudice to become a student of the Talmud, surely knows. Following the latest Moix scandal, the French might wish to modify the American slang for their own usage: “Moix-ie,” the impudent exploitation of tearful televised apologetics. I won’t rehearse the...

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La rentrée (la mienne aussi)

Share the post "La rentrée (la mienne aussi)" My apologies for the long hiatus in this blog. I’ve been translating Thomas Piketty’s new book, Capitalism and Ideology, which will be out in France on Sept. 12 and in English next spring. The manuscript was nearly a thousand pages, so I’ve been busy. But it’s done. Time to get back to French politics. It was less than nine months ago that pundits were speculating about Macron’s mental health. The Gilets Jaunes had...

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The Republicans Temporize

Share the post "The Republicans Temporize" With the news that Les Républicains are about to choose Christian Jacob as their new leader, it is clear that the party has no idea where it intends to go in the future. Christian Jacob is one of those politicians who has always gone wherever the power is at the moment, whether to follow Jacques Chirac, his first master, or Sarkozy, Copé, or Fillon in the years that followed. Fillon is supposed to have called him Rantanplan,...

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Whither Europe?

Share the post "Whither Europe?" It is now two weeks since the European Parliament elections, and the dust has yet to settle. It was a remarkable election in many ways–unprecedented, really. Normally, EP elections are referenda on incumbents; domestic issues outweigh European issues. It would be too much to say that domestic issues took a back seat this time; of course they always matter, or at any rate the “throw the bums out” reflex always counts for something. But...

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From de Gaulle to Tartuffe

Share the post "From de Gaulle to Tartuffe" To understand the collapse of Les Républicains, one has only to re-run one of the televised debates that preceded yesterday’s European elections. France2 had asked each of party representative to start off with a show-and-tell: each was to present an object illustrating the deep meaning of his or her party’s campaign. Le Pen’s choice was brilliant: she showed an image of a truck driver, one Loïc, who had suffered, she said,...

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