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Friday, March 16, 2018

The French are disillusioned with the new President Macron: “new Bonaparte”

A symbolic date for the coming of Emmanuel Macron — a hundred days at the head of the state. The President inadvertently begs the analogy with Napoleon Bonaparte. A young and ambitious politician, a shrewd strategist, who over a few months has gained a huge popularity and triumphantly entered the Elysee Palace… However, the similarity does not end there, and it is already starting to scare some of the French. The scandalous dismissal of the chief of the General staff of the French army showed that the President does not tolerate objections. The extension of the powers of law enforcement agencies under the auspices of fighting terrorism may seem an attack on civil liberties. And the endless attention that the Makron pays personal “achievements” in the international arena, cannot mask inexperience of the President and his supporters in domestic politics.

photo: kremlin.ru

The President-the peacemaker

In France, the head of the Executive authority traditionally in charge of foreign policy, often paying at the mercy of the Prime Minister-the Minister of the interior. Macron seem to have taken this formula too literally and almost all of the first hundred days at the head of the state devoted to international issues. And meetings with foreign guests, he was built to look like a sort of peacemaker in the eyes of the public. The first guest of the Macron has become Russian President Vladimir Putin, with whom he did not hesitate to discuss sensitive issues — “propaganda” by the Russian media and the Chechen persecution of gays.

Then at the Elysee Palace was invited by the President of the United States Donald trump and macron killed two birds with one stone: he showed himself as a mediator in the difficult dialogue of Moscow and Washington and acquired the “exclusive rights” to trump in Europe. The fact that the American President has record low ratings in the Old world. In France the actions of the head of the White house approve, only 14% of respondents. The people of Germany and the UK want to see at the head of the White house even less. On a visit to Paris, trump agreed only under condition that will protect him from the crowds of protesters. London has been able to give him such assurances, but the Macron was able to keep opponents of the American President at a safe distance.

Talks between the two presidents turned unexpectedly warm, so there is no doubt that in the future, trump wants to talk to Europe in the face of Makron, especially against the background of differences with German Chancellor Angela Merkel. And despite the fact that the first meeting of the leaders of the United States and France in Brussels remember is that the long and intense confrontation handshakes: trump known manner to sharply pull the hand of the interlocutor, but the macron, apparently, was prepared to trunovskogo “blitzkrieg” and gave up the slack.

One hundred days of the presidency of the Makron Paris also managed to visit Palestinian leader Mahmoud Abbas and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. In its peacekeeping asset, it can also record negotiations between the warring parties of the conflict in Libya that ended with the signing of the agreement on a temporary cease-fire.

A few popularity points added to the Makron and his campaign for environmental preservation under the motto “Make the Land great again”. It was started after the US withdrawal from the Paris climate agreement and witty beat slogan of the election campaign trump — “let’s Make America great again”.

Quick start

The first big victory of the Macron in the internal politics happened when he created the party of “go Republic!” won the parliamentary elections and received 308 out of 577 seats in the National Assembly. Until the day of voting, the experts doubted that a political movement that a year ago was not known to anyone, will be able to win a majority. The resounding victory of makronisos gave the President carte Blanche to implement his promises in life. However, the majority of the newly minted parliamentarians novice in politics and he has never been elected. “This is a plus and a minus, — said the head of the Center of the French researches of Institute of Europe Yury Rubinsky. — On the one hand, these people are firmly linked his fate with Him and his new party, on the other — they are inexperienced, have no idea about the purely technical side of things”.

“Macron has announced its commitment to upgrade the economic system of France, — the expert continues. After the global economic crisis, the country was not in the best position. Now the head of state created the preconditions in order to take pretty drastic measures, including unpopular. He made conclusions from the failures of his predecessor, Hollande, who delayed the adoption of drastic measures until he fulfills the popular promises. This led only to discredit the President and the government, so the Makron decided to act immediately.”

The first major reform concerned the labour law. It tried to implement the previous President, Francois Hollande, but it caused a wave of mass protests. The fact that unions over the years in France have ensured that the negligent employee was extremely difficult to fire. Dream workers turned losses for the business, moreover, it provoked the increase of unemployment, especially among young people.

Loyal Parliament has delegated to Him the authority to cancel the extra benefits for employees by decree, i.e. without a vote in the National Assembly. “Makron did what was demanded by the entrepreneurs. It was the most dangerous, unpopular decision, but it is properly calculated and began to introduce the reform during the holiday season. Perhaps the trade Union front is split. Autumn will show what will be the reaction,” — says Yuri Rubinsky.

During the election campaign, macron vowed to take action against corruption and nepotism. So, he skilfully played on the scandal connected with his opponent in the race, françois Fillon. The media found out that Fillon, even as a Deputy hired for the position of assistant to his wife Penelope. Colleagues of the ex-MP said that his wife did not show up for work, but got a decent salary at the expense of taxpayers. This provoked a discussion about long-overdue reform.

And July 29 the National Assembly finally approved the law, called the “moralization of political life”. He forbade members of Parliament, Ministers and representatives of the local administration to hire their spouses, children or parents. The document provisions also limit the possibility of side earnings for members: forbid them to receive fees for consulting and “part time” in other public institutions and companies. Had to say goodbye to the “parliamentary reserve” — a sum of money that was given to the deputies to help various organizations (in 2017, it amounted to 147 million euros).

However, this “moralizing” immediately found a sign of hypocrisy. The government does not hide that is going to provide the wife of Macron Brigitte the official status of first lady and set her position in the law. Although the head of state promised that his wife will not be paid, the petition against the “purpose” Brigitte first lady has already signed more than 200 000 people.

The first failures

“Macron directly advertise their determination to strengthen the international position of France, including through the strengthening of the armed forces, — said Yuri Rubinsky of the first failures of the President. And at the same time, in order to overcome the budget deficit gave the order to cut defense spending. The chief of staff of the army Pierre de Villiers said that can’t work in such conditions. Then the Makron in the presence of senior commanders said, “I’m your boss!” — after General de Villiers had resigned. And he was a popular man and in the armed forces, and among the people. Makron, of course, it showed “who’s boss”, but the conflict has hit his reputation.

Another important blunder of the President happened in Economics. Each Minister was given the task to find opportunities for budget savings. And some small technocrat invented to reduce five euros housing allowance for the poor. The outrage was serious: well, one of these five Euro save? On someone came up with to save and how much! It was a serious tactical error, for the month the rating of Makron fell by 10%. Weren’t both of his predecessors [Sarkozy and Hollande]. Therefore, we can say that in domestic policy, the President acts decisively, but not always wisely”.

Controversial was proposed and in June the draft law on the fight against terrorism. The initiative aims to remove the state of emergency, which operates in France in 2015, but at the same time to consolidate some of its features forever. If reform is carried out, the police can search premises with fewer restrictions and in some cases to act without court approval. Opponents of such measures fear that they will be cover to attack on civil liberties, and the increasing pressure on the inhabitants of the Muslim quarters will only push them to extremism.

“It is hardly possible to talk about “hints of authoritarianism” in the behavior of the Macron, rather, it can be called a statesman, — said in comments to “MK” head of the Center for Euro-Atlantic studies, Diplomatic Academy of the MFA of Russia Tatyana Zvereva. — He just meets the needs of the time, and his ideas are in demand. If the French hoped that certain issues will be addressed at the EU level or international organizations, it has now become clear that we got to do it at the national level. This does not mean that France refuses the European integration course. But macron today is striving to become a person that represents a nation, all the French people, tends to resemble the Charles de Gaulle. While he was in the beginning, and the road is difficult. The most difficult social reforms are only coming”.

And macron, apparently, is going to hold them rigidly. The portal Atlantico writes that he communicates with subordinates in an authoritarian style: after a record fall of a rating he made a real dressing down to the officials, accusing them of their failures. At the same time, the President noticeably distanced himself from the media and has brought communications to a minimum. Journalists can forget the revelations that came to them during the reign of Hollande. The current occupant of the Elysee Palace loves to pose for the cameras in a good light, but the fate of France prefers to do behind closed doors. However, few people will remember the Makron hard style of leadership, if by the end of the presidential term he will have something to show.

Sanctions . Chronicle of events

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