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Anti-Austerity François Hollande Elected President of France

Mr. Hollande, the first Socialist French president in nearly two decades, has vowed to pursue efforts initiated by Mr. Sarkozy to reduce the government’s budget deficit. But he said he would ask wealthy households to contribute more by raising taxes to 75% from 41% for people earning more than €1 million ($1.3 million) a year. On the international front, Mr. Hollande has said one of his first decisions would be to fast-track the withdrawal of French soldiers from Afghanistan. – Wall Street Journal

ANGELA MERKEL’S AUSTERITY leadership is slowly but surely being rebutted in elections that prove people are getting sick of policies that aren’t remedying euro-zone troubles, with François Hollande’s tax the richest plan to fight the budget deficit now about to be taken out for a spin.

With a victory by a roughly 52%-48% margin over conservative incumbent Nicolas Sarkozy in the second and final round of the election, Mr. Hollande won a solid mandate to challenge German Chancellor Angela Merkel, who has imposed spending cuts as the main remedy to repair the public finances of heavily indebted European countries. Mr. Hollande, who has never held a national-government position, was planning to speak to Ms. Merkel over the phone later Sunday, an aide said.

But he said he would ask wealthy households to contribute more by raising taxes to 75% from 41% for people earning more than €1 million ($1.3 million) a year. On the international front, Mr. Hollande has said one of his first decisions would be to fast-track the withdrawal of French soldiers from Afghanistan.

When you think of Pres. Obama’s strategic punt in Afghanistan, which puts us meddling in that country until 2024, with Mitt Romney even worse on this subject, you get an idea of just how out of touch the political elite remains in this country.

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14 Responses to Anti-Austerity François Hollande Elected President of France

  1. jjamele May 6, 2012 at 3:45 pm #

    I wonder if there was a population of bloggers in France who spent the last several months screaming “he’s doing the best he can” and “it’s not his fault!” at the people who had lost faith in Sarkozy- or is that “hey, we have to settle for a half loaf, and if you don’t like it you are no better than a tea bagger” attitude exclusive to the USA?

    Wouldn’t it be great if Obama could draw a message out of these results?

    • newdealdem1 May 6, 2012 at 4:43 pm #

      Kudo’s to your post, Taylor,

      jjamele second your comment. How I wish we had as many choices to vote for (and the French party’s are truly different one from the other unlike our two party system who are indebted to the money gods) as the French. Imagine, an American candidate for POTUS saying what Hollande just said in his speech, “Yes, I AM a Socialist”.

      “Wouldn’t it be great if Obama could draw a message out of these results?”

      Yup, it would. Or, rather, I think the Obama administration will draw a message out of these results. The question is what will they do with them. They need to start getting out there and sell spending and raising taxes and how this will get us out of our economic depression and away from our nominal economic growth which will be our undoing if this slump continues. And, we need to vote for congressional members (if such exist) who speak the truth about what must be done economically and stop playing politics and spouting false solutions like cutting taxes and spending now just because those who have espoused such nonsense now are rabid ideologues who care more about their selfish needs and beliefs and not what is best for the country and it’s people.

      Stagnant or nominal economic growth is what we must worry about and address. However, curtailing spending and lowering taxes as well as the disturbing and continued rise in high income disparities in this country between the 1% and the rest of us and if we do nothing to address these false solutions and high disparity in income will only increase the severity of our dangerously low economic growth. And, the IMF recently did a study of high income disparity in a country and of all the variables that affect a country’s economic growth, high income inequality was the main cause of depressed growth. And, austerity only adds to a recessed or depressed economy.

      I am very happy see these results in France. Good for the French people.

      Also, and not least, Paul Krrugman and my Economic professor in Economics 101 are right and have been all along. When an economy is booming, you lower spending and taxes. When an economy is recessed or depressed you increase spending and taxes. Occum’s Razor is as true here as with many solutions to problems. The principle states that one should not make more assumptions than the minimum needed. In other words, the simplest solution and the one at hand is almost always the right one. But, logic and the easiest way to solve our current economic problems and our dangerously slow growth are trumped by politics and bankrupt politicians and moronic ideologues who refuse to give up their cherished and selfish opinions for proven economic facts. Trickle down is a rank failure and as we all know has been tried by Reagan and Bush Jr. And, now with the disastrous results of Cameron’s heavy austerity hand, trickle down should be declared dead once and for all. That is the lesson I hope Obama and Company are learning and react to soon. Although I don’t hold up much hope at the moment but I hope I’m proven wrong.

    • RAJensen May 6, 2012 at 11:29 pm #

      You obviously haven’t got a clue about French politics. Sarkozy was a Conserative who embraced the trickle down GOP Paul Ryan economic policy of austerity.

      The message from France is that austerity is a failure and the Conservative governments in Europe are under assault. In England David Cameron followed the GOP Paul Ryan austerity model. England now has negative GDP growth is in recession and unemployment is rising.

      The lesson for those self professed Pregressives who are so blinded by their irrational hatred of Obama because he isn’t a card carrying member of the extreme left in the US is that the stimulus worked in the US while austerity has failed in Europe.

      That you couldn’t see that is shows you are irrational and know absolutly mothing about European politics.

      Go vote for the Socialist Worker Party candidate in November if it makes you fell better..

      • Cujo359 May 7, 2012 at 1:01 am #

        He understands enough. Sarkozy’s economics policy was the same as Obama’s – support the banks, screw the public to do it. He lost, because there is are functioning progressive parties in Europe.

        Sadly, Obama will not lose for that reason.

      • jjamele May 7, 2012 at 7:14 am #

        And you are so blinded by your devotion to Obama that you simply don’t care about the issues anymore. All that matters to you is that your Team wins, and anyone who opposes your Team is being an irrational baby. We get it.

        The stimulus did work to a large extent. You should tell Obama, who has signaled his willingness to embrace Austerity, several times.

        What. no links to polls today? You must be slipping.

      • jinbaltimore May 7, 2012 at 9:33 am #

        ahh yes…the Baby Bear Bed Method

        anyone with crits of O is either right wing crazy or left wing loony…but supporters of BO….”just right.”

        such beautiful naivete on display

  2. fangio May 6, 2012 at 3:56 pm #

    If he is successful in raising taxes on the rich perhaps people in this country will finally get their heads out of their asses and realize the wealthy are a bunch of welfare cases who have been getting a free ride on the backs of the middle class. Signing some long term agreement with Karzai in Afghanistan was one of the most irresponsible things Obama has ever done. To commit this country, with all it’s financial problems, to being Karzai’s sugar daddy until 2024 just shows how myopic he is when it comes to facing the reality that we simply cannot afford this anymore.

    • jjamele May 7, 2012 at 7:22 am #

      According to a great deal of the mainstream media, the Europeans are in rebellion because they are spoiled children who are used to their free ride, and they’d rather burn their continent down than get off their butts, go to work, and “pay their fair share.”

      In truth, Europe’s middle and lower classes are expressing their unwillingness to pay the bill racked up by the 1%, and unwillingness to do without even more so that the 1% can remain filthy rich, enjoying the benefits of society without paying for them.

      Good for the Europeans. When are WE going to wake up? Only when we break the two-party oligarchy, a monster which more and more bleats BS about the evils of entitlements and tax increases.

  3. guyski May 6, 2012 at 4:02 pm #

    Perhaps it is a little early to come up with an statement that …’Mr. Hollande won a solid mandate to challenge German Chancellor Angela Merke…l There are other factors to consider before figuring out what this means. Such as:

    It’s personal. As Reuters reported President Bling Bling is gone. Sarkozy’s nickname.

    Turnout was at 79.9% compared to 84% in 2007.

    La Penn urge her supporters not to vote and she got 18% in first round voting and did not endorse also Bayrou, who got 9% in first round “officially” did not endorse.

    With this election in France, the results in Greece that punished the ruling parties and the state (Schleswig-Holstein) election in Germany where Merkel’s party lost ground.

    These results could be read as more of a ‘punishment’ than an endorsement of any winning party/platform.

    As for his campaign pledge about wealthy households to contribute more by raising taxes to 75% from 41% for people earning more than €1 million ($1.3 million) a year.
    Personally neutral on this, since there are an estimated 3,000, 3,500 in that group. It seems more symbolic than anything else.

  4. newdealdem1 May 6, 2012 at 5:14 pm #

    Since there is a strong link between austerity economics and continued high income disparities and how they affect our economic growth and the economic growth of all countries, here is that report from the IMF.

  5. fairmindedindependent May 6, 2012 at 7:23 pm #

    You know how it goes over here, heaven forbid if we do anything that the Socialists Europeans do, oh no, they have free healthcare, longer vacation days, no we can’t do that. The conservatives and even alot of democrats were in love with Sarkozy, so I am sure their weeping right now. We will never get that lucky. The conservatives in this country think Obama is a Socialists, when real Socialists in in Europe. The Democrats in this country would be considered conservative to right-wing in Europe, while the Republicans would be considered far-right wing and would hardly win no seats in Parliaments, but then again there is very anti-Illegal immigration hitting Europe just like this country, thats one thing they have in common, its the Republicans Austerity measures that would lose big time in Europe. I am thrilled for France but at the same time, I am abit jealous. Look at what we have to choose from in this country. This two-party system in this country sucks so bad.

  6. Antonio May 6, 2012 at 8:14 pm #

    For me…there isn’t (anymore) a “two party system, only the corporate controlled and paid for White House executive who goes under the public term “elected officials” and wears a label…”democrat or republican”. I think that, and I say this with great respect and not to offend…the only citizens in this country who truly believes that he/she “belongs to a certain party are the hard working, tax paying American citizen.
    Somehow we have been led to believe, beginning in the early 70′s that the “corporaticians”(my own personal term) in Washington are divided, but they are not. Personnaly speaking this generation of the last 50 years are pure capitalists…which means that they represent the financial establishment in our country, not the general working public.

    There is no division of “representatives” , in my mind,no not in the least.

    • whitepaw May 7, 2012 at 11:18 am #

      Antonia — “corporaticians” Love it! I will have to borrow this from you!

      • whitepaw May 7, 2012 at 11:19 am #

        Sorry — meant Antonio

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