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Far-Right Le Pen and Center-Right Macron Frontrunners in French Election


#1

Far-Right Le Pen and Center-Right Macron Frontrunners in French Election

Nika Knight, staff writer

France will see far-right, xenophobic Front National candidate Marine Le Pen face off against Emmanuel Macron, an investment banker who hasn't held public office, in a runoff vote on May 7, as the first round of an unusual presidential election concluded with Sunday's vote.

Students immediately took to the streets in protest against Le Pen's success in the first round, the Associated Press reported Sunday.


#2

"Socialist party candidate François Fillon"

correction: François Fillon is the candidate for conservative LR, the Socialist candidate is Benoît Hamon


#3

This promises to turn out very badly. If the trend reported here continues, and the second round pits these two against each other, I predict that France will elect the horrendous Le Pen, because the almost equally odious Macron is wildly unpopular, has been forced on the country by the media and the financial and political elites, and is therefore greatly resented as a fake candidate. We will be looking at a Brexit/Trump-style middle finger thrust at the elites by the dispossessed masses.

If they had just let Macron fade away after the Socialists threw him under the bus, we would be looking at Melenchon in a landslide. (But I'm still hoping.)

This is just more of the same mentality that gave us the Lisbon treaty (i.e., ignoring the people's will--the "non" vote of 2005--and deciding to bypass popular sentiment and the referendum format and impose by fiat).

Unless Melenchon works a miracle, we're screwed. With Macron vs LePen, it's the financial right vs. the nationalist right. Killary vs Drumpf, for all intents and purposes. NATO wars vs riots on the streets. Pick your poison.


#4

It is worth noting that when people cite that old saw about history repeating itself that they are always talking about the bad things in history repeating themselves. In this case, we are reminded of the rise of the strong man leaders and fascist governments prior to WWII. With the benefit of hindsight, an observer of history marks the seminal influence of the earliest examples whose success in achieving power spawned or rather encouraged the rise of other strong man leaders elsewhere. Mussolini leading the way for Hitler and Franco et al to follow.

The forces of the ultra right persist in the political background as if waiting for their opportunity to gain the stage of world history. Thus when a likely candidate appears, they find a willing, if relatively uncritical, support already waiting for them to then exploit. Of importance to historians and sociologists as well as economists is the fact that all strong man regimes sought wealth (as well as power) and received the cooperation of economic interests from corporations and financiers. The corporate backers in turn received as their reward a lessening of inhibitory legislation and regulation in general. Moreover as a part of this reward, corporate interests sought and achieved an increase of regulations against working classes and in particular unions and of social welfare programs for the poor etc.

Once this strong man change over was universally achieved... only the bloodshed of generations was repeated as it always is in history.

The 'subsequent wars' are surely the one thing that has been repeated over and over again in history. The way that the rise of one strong man in one country gives rise to that of another elsewhere is often all too apparent but how their rise will inspire an urge for war to follow... is somewhat less noticeable.


#6

Interestingly, it appears that the far more democratic electoral process of France still ended up producing a pair of run off candidates similar to Hillary and Trump.

Although, in Europe, the "far right" rhetorically at least, support social programs that the neoliberal "moderates", through their "reforms" have been dismantling. I'm skeptical that this rhetoric means anything - even if that was enough to counter the dangerous nationalism and xenophobia of the euro-right.

It's probably going to be LePen on May 7.


#7

If I was a french citizen I would have voted Hamon, but sadly Hamon couldnt get past his party's deep unpopularity. I liked Melanchon but he is too anti EU for me. Sadly its a choice of two candidates one a populist Right winger and another a firm centrist, sound familiar.


#8

Lets hope your wrong. Macron isnt that good but he is better by a longshot


#9

Hamon was a good candidate


#10

Well, here's a rare thing on CD these days, an article that isn't about the USA!


#11

Frankreich, Frankreich, über alles...


#12

Nothing wins elections like fear.

Direct Democracy


#13

Once again, the "lesser of two evils". The boon to the militarists and Neoliberals is the presence of a bogeyman on the far right to scare people into voting for the corporate candidate, even if the rhetoric of the right-wing candidate is anti-globalization, anti-banker, anti-NATO.
Mélanchon has already said he is not directing his supporters to vote for Macron,and many will just vote blank or stay home, so as some have already said on this site, they really are playing with fire because LePen might very well slide in, in the next round.


#14

It's just another Trump v Clinton matchup. This seems to be the fault line now in the "rebellion" against the neoliberal project.

Elites have proven able to get at least one neoliberal favorite into every contest--usually disguised as a "liberal". The populist Right continues to just outdraw any left-leaning populism nearby.

Just like the US and the UK, France loses whichever one of these jerks wins.


#15

What do you mean by "unless Mélanchon works a miracle"? He's out of the race, as far as I know, with no chance left. What could he do at this point except lead a revolution after the next election?


#16

I wrote that before the results were in.


#17

No, Hamon wanted to send the bombers everywhere and played the Putin-boogeyman game. He's a little better than Hollande, but not much.


#18

"The populist Right continues to just outdraw any left-leaning populism nearby."

Actually, no, that's why the Macron candidacy was so devious and divisive, and why the treachery of the (not) Socialists will prove historic. If they'd been real socialists, they would have backed Melenchon and Hamon would have withdrawn and thrown his weight behind Jean-Luc. Instead they made it clear they preferred neoliberal banskster interventionist Macron.

Because, head-to-head, Melenchon would have wiped the floor with Marine Le Pen. Just like Bernie against Drumph. The lefty populists in the Le Pen camp would have deserted her for him, and the centrists would have held their noses to keep Marine out.

Once again, thanks to the treachery of the bankster-beholden political elite, we're looking at the possibility of another far-right victory. Which, truth be told, I think they prefer to the choice of equity, decency, and peace.

F**k them all.


#19

Sorry, Stephen. I didn't think of looking at the time it was posted.

Quoting Stephen Sartaarelli commondreams@discoursemail.com:


#20

With May, Trump and Le Pen the door has successfully been opened for a global empire. China and Russia have never been closer and with our fantasy, child like belief that we are still the number one power and vilifying NATO, we are well poised to become globally irrelevant.If Trump and Bannon had planned it they couldn't have done a better job, while we tinker with idiots like O'reillly.


#21

Every poll of Le Pen versus Macron has the latter up by at least 15%. This is the worst case scenario for Le Pen. Given how bad Le Pen is I guess that I have to hope Macron wins, but not much to celebrate if Macron is the winner, which seems highly likely.