by Ramin Mazaheri
The world can say “So long Francois Hollande – we hardly knew ya”.
Hollande, after all, was a purely national-level politician when he won office. His big gig had been heading the Socialist party for 11 years, until his ex-partner Segolene Royal lost to Nicolas Sarkozy in 2008.
Hollande’s similarities with former US First Lady Hillary Clinton run even deeper than partnering with a president, (almost, in Royal’s case). Both Hollande and Clinton were creations of “the Party”, as Hillary was the Party’s choice 4 years earlier, in 2008, but she lost to an all-talk, newbie senator from the Midwest.
But you can at least say that the world had seen Hillary in action – Hollande had never held a major cabinet post or any international job. Besides heading the Socialist Party, he was mainly known for being the mayor of Tulle, population 15,396.
But in 2012 Hollande was the Party’s choice, ultimately, to go down in history as a patsy.
Nationally, he’s been sacrificed on the altar of the mainstream party. That certainly didn’t start with his recent abdication, but has been going on since he accepted austerity.
Internationally, Hollande was a patsy for three groups: the “can’t be rich enough” 1%, the centripetal force centered in Brussels, and the European Troika. These interconnected powers controlled Hollande as effectively as any puppet, even though the French president is granted more executive power than any other Western leader.
He’s the most unpopular president ever, and he has admitted defeat before even running for re-election – he never coulda even been a contender. That’s truly a rare feat in Western democracies – at least the unelected Gerald Ford can say that he tried to win in 1976, but lost.
Hollande should have seen this would be the price…if his master plan true was to immediately turn 180 degrees and install austerity until his bitter end.
It didn’t have to be that way: after a couple years of austerity, when France’s borrowing rates hit historical lows, he could have said that the ‘confidence fairy’ of high finance had been appeased. The gods of high finance have been lending to France at under 1% since 2012 (they currently loan at a benchmark interest rate of 0.75%).
But Hollande used Brussel’s arbitrary rule of refusing budgetary deficits of over 3% to pass an austerity budget every year, on top of Sarkozy’s final annual budget. Hollande only turned down Brussels at the very end end, citing the need for greater security (military) spending in the wake of terrorism hysteria.
Did it work? Well it did for the rich: stock dividends hit a quarterly European record in the second quarter of 2014. But that wasn’t enough for them to ease off the failure of austerity.
Did it work for everyone else? Of course not – that’s what neoliberalism is, after all. Unemployment kept climbing to record levels (over 10%), inequality soared, poverty reached new highs, economic growth stayed at recession levels, and the list goes on. Neoliberalism, as anyone paying attention knows, doesn’t rely on facts nor results to further the fervor of its adherents.
And the people despised Hollande. An approval rating of just 4% is practically unparalleled by someone who hasn’t been forced out of office or deposed in a coup.
But Hollande did it anyway, and now he’s slinking away into infamy. Unless he has a really big family in Tulle, he probably can’t even get re-elected there.
By quitting he’s not going to pull any of the levers available to an executive as powerful as the French president, and not even one who has flagrantly abused his executive authority. He didn’t even try to sidestep the upcoming Socialist democratic primary and run separately, despite ruling undemocratically, due to the state of emergency, which is now in its (lucky) 13th month. The emergency will last until after the May election, and it appears to be up to the new president to decide to continue what is accurately termed a “police state dictatorship”.
So besides being a “Mainstream Man” of the Party, who was Francois Hollande?
Back during the 2012 election campaign Sarkozy derided him as an insignificant “Mr. Little Jokes”, because of Hollande’s purported wit and sarcastic humor. His sarcasm ran very deep, apparently, as his ex-mistress caused a storm in 2014 when she revealed that he referred to the homeless as “the people without teeth”.
Sarkozy, just ousted in the first major blow to France’s mainstream establishment, was apparently right on with his assessment: “Flanby” Hollande’s resistance against austerity was a joke, but hardly a small one for France, and hardly a small one for all of Europe as well.
But the mood in May 2012 actually couldn’t have been more different: Sarkozy – with his right-wing economics and boorish personality – that was France’s only real problem, and now he was gone.
The main campaign issue was ending austerity, and Hollande declared that high finance “was his enemy”. He ran on a populist measure – restoring economic sovereignty to the average citizen – and he won. His “little jokes” showed vast intelligence, said the hopeful; why not give a first chance to a famously formerly-fat guy from the countryside nicknamed “Mr. Normal” instead of slick Sarko?
Yes, back in 2012 France was going to lead the resistance against the Germans, again, who were growing fat off of imperialism against their small Eurozone “partners” (also again). Of course France was getting fat too, but if Hollande could drop a ton of weight prior to the campaign then French banks could just as easily be restrained from swallowing Greece in portions nearly as big as Germany’s.
Mr. Normal may be unfairly vilified in a post-Brexit and post-Trump world, but maybe France was ahead of their time with Hollande in 2012? If so, they have truly learned that Mr. (and Ms.) Normal can be very easily manipulated – no Castro, he (nor she).
And yet, obviously, the mood couldn’t be more different today: now it’s “far-right or bust” across France, Europe and already in the United States. France will probably also turn to nationalist fascism via the far-right’s Marine Le Pen in May, but that’s not as dire as in the United States.
That’s not giving France’s credit, although Le Pen is at least economically leftist in many ways (for now): so deep are France’s cultural woes that every party – except those half-dozen terribly disunited far left parties that can’t even work together to push their most popular candidate, Jean-Luc Melenchon – now shares Le Pen’s xenophobic and Islamophobic outlook.
Hollande will also be remembered as presiding over this mainstreaming of xenophobia by persecuting the Roma worse than Sarkozy and ignoring the refugee crisis he was a major factor in perpetuating. Two terror attacks, and one psychotic attack in Nice, gave Hollande the chance to end France’s Islamophobia but he used it to get what he wanted instead. Again, no racially-unifying Castro, he.
And what Hollande really, truly, madly, deeply wanted was to ram through, undemocratically, a right-wing roll back to France’s labor code, and he finally got that last spring after months of anti-government protests. France’s labor code was, after all, a semi-pro-worker labor code that since World War II has been an anomaly and a major capitalist propaganda embarrassment to the US and the United Kingdom. Of course, France’s poverty rates are far lower than in the US and the UK, and even their adored continental cousin Germany.
It took 2,000 plus arrests, a few lost eyes and untold amounts of police brutality (virtually ignored by Western media in a major double-standard), but Hollande got that done. (I’m not including the house arrests of environmentalists and Muslims, or the war hysteria prison sentences, here.)
And after all his tireless work, Hollande is now taking the fall for the Socialist Party.
By falling on the sword he hopes to salvage the Socialists’ image and chance of winning in May. He really shouldn’t have: the party is so tainted, so pro-establishment and so obviously lacking in any left-wing integrity that they have nobody and nothing to move forward with. Whose logic could be so easily manipulated as to give France’s Socialists another 5 years after such a hated betrayal?
Prime Minister Manual Valls, one of the last die-hard “Third Way” politicians in the West, seems tipped to represent the Socialists, but he has no chance to win. Valls is a “Socialist” like Hillary was a “Democrat” but he may not be dumb enough to sacrifice for the Party as his boss has just done.
And yet despite all the anti-Hollande vitriol, ultra-austerity conservative party candidate Francois Fillon is polling to win at 66% despite an ultra-austerity platform. It’ll keep getting said, but that’s more proof that France’s electorate aren’t any more sophisticated, modern or politically-intelligent than anywhere else.
“One day they will look back and thank me” – surely that’s what Hollande is thinking. Gorbachev is probably thinking the same thing, too. Both of them are totally wrong, both are out of power and both are almost universally despised today.
Ramin Mazaheri is the chief correspondent in Paris for Press TV and has lived in France since 2009. He has been a daily newspaper reporter in the US, and has reported from Egypt, Tunisia, South Korea and elsewhere. His work has appeared in various journals, magazines and websites, as well as on radio and television.
I do not have respect or compassion for Hollande, he does not deserve it!
An extremely low IQ, a stupidity grounded in French arrogance, a mason who sold out the interests of the French people to the 1% elite, the Troika and Bruxelles: instead of being punished he will retire on a very lucrative Presidential pension, not to mention the bonuses he got during his administration…
Why people keep on voting politicians into positions of power? They all betray their electorates – full of populist promises soon forgotten once they are elected.
Parliamentary “democracy” has been going on for about two centuries in Europe and reads like a sordid list of failures and great disasters for the common people. It removed the monarchs’ absolutism and aristocratic feudal privileges but enthroned a new parasitic class of scroungers who get elected to fleece and fool the people while enacting laws to protect and enrich the plutocracy they whorishly represent.
Why voting? People are not given a choice at all at elections – a politician always wins (more so when they masquerade as “outsider” or antiestablishmentarianist like the next dweller of the Whore House). The maligned Soviet one-party political system at least was more honest and even more democratic. Any person could put his name down as a candidate for any elected position in the centralized hierarchy and – just from memory – about 25% of the members of the last Congress were independent deputies. And there was even higher non-party participation in local, district and republic soviets. With the exception of Lenin (a lawyer) all the leaders of the Soviet Union came from working class background – although they worked their way up within the party structure, which is understandable considering the tribulations the SU went through from the very beginning and the necessity of having committed and revolutionary cadres to drive the socialist project forward. In the end it was those post-Stalin apparatchiks (the equivalent to our political class) who betrayed the people. See the similarities?
Think and act outside the box.
** the necessity of having committed and revolutionary cadres to drive the socialist project forward **
And manage the executions, torture, and prison camps. Those were necessary functions too. Vital contributions to the success of the socialist experiment even. This is well known.
I just look at him and and keep asking myself…
No one called ‘Hollande’, is French.
Ever since Sarkozy, France been an Anglo-Zionist Empire-occupied country, with dual citizens, or their close allies, in all key positions.
I wonder what expression the ugly little prick had on his face as he cruised Paris on his scooter to impregnate French starlets?
Bel homme, n’est-ce pas? Et quant à son précurseur, suivez le lien ci-dessous!
(News reporter: “And next, I can’t resist showing you the opening of the press conference held by French President Sarkozy after the summit. He came out from a meeting with his Russian colleague Vladimir Putin, and it seems they were not just drinking water”)
Oui, les Français ont-ils, que le vin les perd….
House Quietly Passes Bill Targeting “Russian Propaganda” Websites
On November 30, one week after the Washington Post launched its witch hunt against “Russian propaganda fake news”, with 390 votes for, the House quietly passed “H.R. 6393, Intelligence Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2017”, sponsored by California Republican Devin Nunes (whose third largest donor in 2016 is Google parent Alphabet, Inc), a bill which deals with a number of intelligence-related issues, including Russian propaganda, or what the government calls propaganda, and hints at a potential crackdown on “offenders.”
A quick skim of the bill reveals “Title V—Matters relating to foreign countries”, whose Section 501 calls for the government to “counter active measures by Russia to exert covert influence … carried out in coordination with, or at the behest of, political leaders or the security services of the Russian Federation and the role of the Russian Federation has been hidden or not acknowledged publicly.”
The section lists the following definitions of media manipulation:
Establishment or funding of a front group.
Disinformation and forgeries.
Funding agents of influence.
Incitement and offensive counterintelligence.
Sounds like a declaration of war. A tit-for-tat is in order to re-establish parity and get rid of the 5th column as foreign agents of influence.
It is even worse anonymous,just out: more warmongering from the neocons in the House.
US lawmakers want to curb Pentagon’s military cooperation with Russia
The House of Representatives wants to cut the Pentagon’s military-to-military cooperation with Russia. The provisions included in a $618.7 billion defense budget bill impose strict conditions for the US military on working with its Russian counterparts.
The National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA), which sets policy for the Department of Defense for the next year, has been approved by a vote of 375-34.
Tucked in the middle of the legislation is a whole section dedicated to “matters relating” to Russia, more than lawmakers devoted to Islamic State, NATO or cooperation with Europe combined.
The bill lays out a set of conditions, which the DOD would have to abide by in case it wants or has to deal with Russia.
Specifically, the bill bans the Pentagon from using Congress-approved funds “for bilateral military-to-military cooperation between the governments of the United States and Russia” unless the DOD proves to Capital Hill that Moscow “ceased its occupation of Ukrainian territory and its aggressive activities that threaten the sovereignty and territorial integrity of Ukraine and members of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization.”
The Department would also have to “certify” to Congress that Russia “is abiding by the terms of and taking steps in support of the Minsk Protocols regarding a ceasefire in eastern Ukraine.”
However, the lawmakers did not entirely close the door to military cooperation with Moscow.
The same section of the Act “permits a waiver under specified conditions.”
While it does not spell out those exact conditions, one of the following sections implies America’s “national interest.”
Thus, the NDAA’s Sec. 1236 “prohibits funds from being used to implement any activity that recognizes the sovereignty of Russia over Crimea,” yet it allows the Pentagon to waive the prohibition if it can prove to Congress that doing so would be in the national interest.
the russian response should be to change the US’s status from ‘partner’ to ‘target’.
in facebook of course ;)
So, what else is new. Sounds like their modus operandi has just come out of the closet
You misspelled “the ultimate pussy”.
In France the zionazis needed to discredit socialism, hollande was the perfect petain for this. Much like in america, the zionazis needed a quisling who would discredit non whites and libberalz (IE: right wingers to the left of gay edgar hoover, their is no actual political left in pindoland, thanks to a dedicated campaign of Jewish zionist sabotage), obama being the ideal quisling there.
Preventing access to real media sources is an intimate part of this zionazi pushing people to the political right. What this freakshow can not subvert they seek to destroy or exclude.
Blair was to UK Socialism what Hollande is to France, both are “assholes” with a genetic defect. that need to be universally despised.
Hollande has been elected by ‘accident’ for two reasons:DSK(Straus Khan former IMF head was trapped by the CIA in the NYC Sofitel in a rape/sex scandal,he was the official socialist candidate,Hollande took his seat over)and because the people wanted ‘anybody’ but Sarkozy.
Fillon seems to be more pro Russian,but it remains to be seen when in power as like the others before him,he will be blackmailed by the usual suspects(US,Nato,Merkel etc).
Hollande is no ultimate anything; he has merely been the latest and the lowest (but by no means the worst) stage in the continual degradation of French intellectual power and political prestige in this century (and earlier, but the earlier decline has been less palpable than the present spectacular infamy). The last French president to have any autonomy was Jacques Chirac: an old crook, but in refusing to participate in the Anglo-Capitalist Bush/BLiar rape of Iraq, Chirac showed himself a crook with principle, and a proponent of French autonomy in the tradition of de Gaulle. In a rapid coup Chirac was undermined by his own foreign secretary who, while pretending to argue Chirac’s case on the world stage, concealed the information that would have strengthened Chirac’s argument: the information that Saddam Hussein did not possess WMD. Sarko immediately took his place; one look at that vicious face, and I thought of the reported exclamation of an Austrian lady when one of her compatriots became Chancellor of Germany: “Wie eine gemeines gesicht’. Sarko delivered the goods: the rape of Iraq was followed by the rape of Libya. Hollande is merely third in that infamous line. Will the French throw off the Anglo-Capitalist yoke? I doubt it, because they have a Rothschildt of their own.
I can’t believe that the French people were enthusiastic to see how their president became a little pet for the German Mutti. Every time he got a call from Berlin, he run there in four legs and happy smile.
Speaking of patsies, Canada’s current regime although perhaps more moderate than the previous one, never misses an opportunity to grovel before the Hegemon or needle Russia.
Whether it be supporting the Neo-Fascist junta in Ukraine and demanding the return of Crimea to them, voting along with the USA and Ukraine against a bill to negate fascism (Canada could have abstained if the wording was unaccepable), joining the USA in pounding Iraq, Afganistan, Syria and Libya etc. or merely taunting Russia by sending military to Russia’s border and indulging in juvenile villification propaganda, Canada is there cap in hand, like a good litlle vassal.
The previous Canadian regime under Harper passed Bill C-51 which accelerated police state dragnet powers at the expense of privacy. Even these powers were exceeded.
Currently Bill C-51 is under review and public input, which started in September, will close on December 15th.
One can download a PDF from the link below:
At a quick glance it is interesting what it leaves out.
One major political argument in France nowadays is that Hollande has been made by the French-American Foundation :
Just like Juppé, Macron or several ministers (from “left” and “right”) as well as newspapers editorialists etc. Just look at the list in the provided link.
“And yet despite all the anti-Hollande vitriol, ultra-austerity conservative party candidate Francois Fillon is polling to win at 66% despite an ultra-austerity platform.”
Mmmmh, not quite. While it is true that 66% of the 4 million people who have voted for the French right primaries have chosen Fillon, these 66% are die-hard wealthy lazies and/or elderlies who have since long forgotten what the word “work” means.
And although Sarkozy’s “Working harder to gain more” was a little overoptimistic, it was quite a good campaign slogan, Fillon’s “You shall work harder than ever for salaries weaker than ever !” is atrocious (and hainous, also). Yes, no doubt he will make a killing within die-hard right voters, but as far as other voters are concerned, he should better not even try to meet them during his campaign…
By the way, while Sarkozy was very prone to provocation, he never forgot not to go too far. And contrarily to Sarkozy, Fillon looks very much like Hollande : deaf and blind to his fellow citizens. During the right primaries, Fillon complained that as French prime minister, he was subordinated to Sarkozy, and thus, he was restrained and couldn’t do what Hollande did.
In sum, Sarkozy has been accused of being an hypocrital die-hard leftist shouting right slogans fooling his voters.
“And yet despite all the anti-Hollande vitriol, ultra-austerity conservative party candidate Francois Fillon is polling to win at 66% despite an ultra-austerity platform.”
– Response: “Mmmmh, not quite. While it is true that 66% of the 4 million people who have voted for the French right primaries have chosen Fillon, these 66% are die-hard wealthy lazies and/or elderlies who have since long forgotten what the word “work” means.”
I’m afraid you may be mistaken – the author is referring to polls that have Fillon beating Le Pen in Round 2 of the presidential election at 66 to 34 percent. Fillon beat Juppe at 67 to 33 in the Republicain primary.
Anglo-Zionist CrapOrCrap polls had Hillary winning at 95% the day before the election.
So… what does that leave of your post?
Dear Saker, i doubt orthodox etymologists understand the meaning of the following word. http://www.google.com.au/url?sa=t&source=web&cd=1&ved=0ahUKEwjGuOeH_tfQAhXHJ5QKHa6hDRwQFggcMAA&url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.merriam-webster.com%2Fdictionary%2Fgore&usg=AFQjCNE92lfozw6azP0nX7jz0pfdc5cb9w&sig2=ROD78CJzKt11lz3_EYHO9Q
No more short Frenchmen for president. Get a tall legionnaire. Better yet – beautiful Le Pen. Saving France is important.
“France will probably also turn to nationalist fascism via the far-right’s Marine Le Pen in May, but that’s not as dire as in the United States.”
As far as France is concerned, its most striking feature is its total subjugation by Zionazi political coercion with Soral and Dieudonné as the most blatant cases domestically, accompanied by unending colonial wars and the ugly Mistral fraud with regard to French foreign policy.
On this basis, Marine Le Pen and Front National pose a serious problem. There is such a groundswell of revulsion and contempt by now against what passes for the “Elites” in France (and the EU) that there is a social explosion in the making. Marine Le Pen is capitalizing immensely on this genuine, popular mood. I feel disposed to believe that she, while feared and even hated by the ruling Zionazi Establishment, might also be seen by the latter as the only viable alternative to prevent an outright political catastrophe for Western imperialism. Being intelligent, highly politically conscious, and strong-willed Marine Le Pen might in fact be able to gain some tangible political concessions from the Zionazis in return for continued vasallage, albeit less oppressive and in-your-face. That would not make France more fascist than it already is; probably less so.
On the contrary, to grant straight-out fascism unrestrained power in France and thereby boost fascist power globally, the Zionazis should stage a violent coup d’état thus catapulting some equally committed “specimen” to power. Good ol’ BHL springs to mind as the regime’s solid, dependable in-house ideologue; yet somebody else would most likely have to be assigned the task of public relations management.
Hollande is merely a CEO fired by his board (Qatar) for lack of results.
He and his foreign affairs ministers were unable to deliver what was promised in Syria
Every single leader in Europe since the end of the Second World War has been a non-entity.
They have all been small minded, unpatriotic yes men/women to the equally appalling US Presidents.
They all behave like bullies blaming everyone else for their inadequacies and failings while setting up fascist police states at the behest of the Joos.
The last truely great European leader was Adolf Hitler who took his nation from an economic basket case in 1933 to a world super power in just 6 years in 1939.
Since Adolf Hitler Europe and the USA have been ruled by political pygmies paid for by the Joos.
One day soon Hitler will be reincarnated and will save Europe for all time.
Standard hostile troll used to discredit a website.
Good call, a total troll. What a schmuck that person must be….
Why does Hitler need to be reincarnated? According to the tabloids he is alive and well, living in the Rocky Mountains.
Mein Fuhrer! I can valk!
Hollande has besmirched the word ‘socialist’.
Until the Euro goes, all the European nations are roped into ‘austerity’.
The sooner it goes, the better.
The chance to end France’s Islamophobia? Whoa! The chance to amplify and expand it.
Islamophobia–fear of Islam, not hatred for Islam. Is fear a sin?
No fear isn’t a sin, but it is usually weak and cowardly, like with Islamophobia….
You try being gang stalked by salafists before you accuse people of cowardice.
So one gang of Salafists justifies fear of an entire religion and 1 billion people? My sympathies, but that’s like justifying Christianphobia due to the KKK – one would be quite wrong to ‘hate’ Christians or Christianity for a tiny percentage of extremists. It’d be like hating the game of football because you hate Cowboy fans.
Phobia means fear, not hate. I don’t hate Muslims at all. I don’t like terrorists and jihadists.
So stay out of Mosul and Aleppo and you’ll have no problem, LOL! It’s the citizens of such places who suffer the most from terrorism, not the Western countries who created, funded and politically-supported the jihadists in the first place. By your definition all Muslims are Islamophobic as well, LOL!!!! Maybe you are a Muslim and you don’t know it? HAHAHAHAAHHAHAHAHA
I recall having read an analysis by Thierry Meyssan, where he argued the French in 2012 elected not a President, but rather a governor who was to rule their nation in the name of the Washington regime. Indeed, so far Hollande has indeed been another “son-of-bitch” doing whatever he was ordered to do by his US masters, like any old Latin American dictator of the early 20th century. The terrain had been prepared by Nicolas Sarkozy, a CIA asset with close ties to John Kerry.
I am afraid I must disagree with the comment made on Mélenchon: he hardly has islamophobic views on anything. His main pointon religion comes back to the concept of secularism in France, the idea that the state be separated from religion. And his proposal is clear on this subject, no more financial help for worship, but that isn’t particularly aimed at Islam, as it affects all faiths.