Segolene Royal, the mod-Socialist candidate for the French presidency, kicked off her campaign by telling the people of France to “ask yourselves what you can do for your country.” Not terribly original by American standards, but it’s not a frequently asked question in France. Unfortunately, a French presidency predicated on self-sacrifice by the citizenry (the trade unionists? the Arabs running rampant in the Paris suburbs?) would be dead-on-arrival.
But Royal’s presidency would not be predicated on self-sacrifice by the citizenry. In all likelihood, it would not be predicated on much of anything. She appears to be an utterly vacuous candidate, an impression reinforced by reports of her performance in recent debates. In some ways, a vacuous Socialist is probably better than a real one. But with all of its problems, including something like an intifada on its hands, one wonders whether France could survive the frivolous presidency Royal likely would provide.
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