France

Macron has answers, but not for France

Featured image Emmanuel Macron, who became president of France because a scandal effectively took down the front-running candidate, fancies himself the leader of the free world. This week he will host a climate summit. Last week he chastised President Trump for his decision to recognize that Jerusalem is the capital of Israel. Last month, he mediated a dispute over Lebanon. Meanwhile, back in France, Parisians are threatening a hunger strike if immigrants »

Macron the Meta?

Featured image I’ve been highly suspicious of Emmanuel Macron, France’s youngish, posterboy president. First of all, he’s French. Second, his “beyondist” positioning between or above the existing French parties—rotten as they are—seems dubious. And while not abandoning these or other suspicions, his interview published today in the German magazine Der Spiegel makes for some very interesting reading. One comment in particular jumps out: I am a strong believer that modern political life »

France Under Martial Law

Featured image Over at PJ Media, Patrick Poole is following the story that broke this morning in Paris of a car that rammed and injured several French military personnel. The driver, who fled the scene, was subsequently arrested, though as of this writing his identity has not been revealed. But French authorities are describing it as a “terror attack,” which means we can expect that CNN will say that “we don’t know »

Netanyahu in Paris

Featured image French President Emmanuel Macron hosted yet another prominent leader when Benjamin Netanyahu came to Paris this weekend. Netanyahu’s visit struck a more serous note than President Trump’s. The Israeli Prime Minister wasn’t in Paris for a parade. Instead, the occasion was the 75th anniversary of a Holocaust roundup in Paris in which thousands of Jews were arrested and deported to Nazi concentration camps in Eastern Europe. The occasion was also »

They’ll always have Paris

Featured image What should we make of last week’s love fest in Paris between President Trump and French President Macron? On the surface, it was improbable. In the French election just a few months ago, Trump seemed more favorably disposed towards Marine Le Pen than towards Macron. And Trump did the unthinkable, from the French perspective, when he withdrew the U.S. from the Paris climate agreement. Macron responded by attempting to ridicule »

Europe Moves to Ban Internal Combustion

Featured image The Independent reports that France will ban gasoline-powered vehicles by 2040. The Independent is foolish enough to think that this is good news: France plans to ban all petrol and diesel vehicles by 2040, the country’s new environment minister has announced. Nicolas Hulot made the announcement as he unveiled a series of measures as part of newly elected President Emmanuel Macron’s plan to make the country carbon neutral by 2050. »

Emmanuel Macron: The boy who cried “wolf”

Featured image Emmanuel Macron, the 39 year old president of France who has been in office for a few months, declared yesterday that “our world has never been so divided.” At the end of the G-20 summit, Macron intoned: “Centrifugal forces have never been so powerful; our common goods have never been so threatened.” I don’t know what Macron’s 64 year-old wife taught him when she was his high school teacher, but »

En Marche marches on

Featured image En Marche, the fledgling political party created by French President Emanuel Macron, rolled up impressive margins in the first round of parliamentary elections this weekend. With 90 percent of voters accounted for, Macron’s party had 32 percent support; the Conservative Republican party 18 percent; Marine Le Pen’s National Front slightly less than 14 percent; and the Socialists a mere 7.5 percent. Most importantly, pollsters estimate that this weekend’s vote presages »

Macron inaugurated (plus notes from our man in Paris)

Featured image Emmanuel Macron became France’s president today. He chose to mark his inauguration day with military symbolism. For example, he broke with tradition by boarding an open-topped, camouflage military jeep, instead of a civilian limousine, for the traditional drive up the Champs-Élysées where he lit the flame in tribute to France’s war dead at the tomb for the unknown soldier. I don’t assume that Macron is “appropriating” military symbolism for cynical »

The French election: Our man in Paris reports

Featured image We have a correspondent in Paris (why should Council Bluffs be the only city so honored?). He’s an American who has lived and worked in Paris for the last 15 years as an attorney. He’s been involved in U.S. politics on behalf of the Republican Party in the expat community in France for the same period. He filed this report: 1. The election was won by centrist En Marche candidate »

Macron crushes Le Pen [UPDATED]

Featured image Initial reports from France are that Emmanuel Macron has decisively beaten Marine Le Pen in the presidential election. The French newscast we’re watching estimates that Macron will end up with around 65 percent of the vote. This isn’t quite the shellacking Le Pen’s father experienced in the 2002 run-off. That year, Jacques Chirac defeating Jean-Marie Le Pen by a count of 82-18. However, Marine Le Pen’s showing is still poor. »

De Gaulle confronts Islam

Featured image Ross Douthat’s recent New York Times columns on French politics here (April 29) and here (May 3) are both not only good, but also full of interesting reading in the links accessible online. Referring to the French presidential candidate who is predicted to lose the election being held today, Douthat asserts in the first of these two columns: [T]he politician that Le Pen has obviously strained to imitate is not »

Marxist economics

Featured image Yesterday, I mentioned Marine Le Pen’s advocacy of the use of two currencies in France. Patriotic, salt-of-the-earth Frenchmen would use the French franc; elitist bloodsuckers would use the Euro. Just kidding. Actually, the franc would be used for France’s “home economy.” The Euro would be used for international trade. Le Pen was hard pressed to defend this seemingly inane proposal during her debate with Emmanuel Macron. This account by CNN »

Marine Le Pen — not normalized

Featured image A few days ago, I wrote of Marine Le Pen: Even if Le Pen trounces Macron in the debate, she’s unlikely to defeat him in the election. . .But Le Pen can achieve much even in defeat. To use the American left’s term, she can be “normalized.” Actually, I find Le Pen pretty normal for a politician. . .The views Le Pen expresses don’t strike me as abnormal given the »

The Le Pen-Macron slugfest

Featured image Marine Le Pen and Emmanuel Macron, the two remaining candidates for president of France, debated last night in advance of the election to be held this weekend. I watched only a small part of the debate because (1) my lack of skill in comprehending French, when spoken quickly, prevented me from following as closely as I wanted and (2) it was frustrating viewing because the two contestants kept speaking over »

Emmanuel Macron: Wrong man, wrong time?

Featured image In an article called “The French, Coming Apart,” Christopher Caldwell, drawing heavily on the work of author Christophe Guilluy, argues that globalization has effectively cut France in two. In 16 dynamic urban areas, Caldwell says, the world’s resources have proved a profitable complement to those found in France. However, other cities and towns have become “desertified,” with the empty storefronts and blighted downtown sectors Rust Belt Americans know well. Caldwell »

A Strange Fact About Emmanuel Macron

Featured image The French election has come down to a runoff between Emmanuel Macron and Marine le Pen. The French establishment is uniting behind Macron, who is considered a mainstream figure. In one respect, though, his history is odd: he is married to one of his high school teachers, who was a married mother of three when they met. The Sun has the story, with the headline: “How French election front runner »