‘Vintage Macron’? like the Beaujolais of an off year, not just disappointing, simply trading on its name, but sour and utterly weak ! This is the key to Sophie Pedder’s near hagiography of M. 37%. Ms. Pedder an employee of The Economist, once a sister publication of the prestigious Financial Times. She is not Balzac here, but rather C.P. Snow with a political propinquity for the man and his politics.
Just to interject this very pertinent question: who funded the rise of M. 37% ? The answer is here:
Headline: French President Macron Received Millions from Bankers: Report
Sub-headline: France’s new president has made huge efforts to make people forget about his elitist background. But financial figures tell another story.
French President Emmanuel Macron funded his campaign with tremendous support from the banking sector, which he himself was a part of as a former bank executive at Rothschild, investigative journal Mediapart revealed Sunday.
The online paper reviewed all of the emails sent by Macron’s campaign team, which were leaked the night before his election, and other legal documents Mediapart could access.
Some of the fundraisers were top bank executives, like Christian Dargnat, who quit his position as the CEO of BNP Paribas in April 2016 in order to join Macron’s recently-created movement “En Marche.”
The investigation found that in a short period of time, Macron’s campaign team succeeded in raising about US$14.5 million — all while making huge efforts to sway public opinion to forget his links to the finance world. Throughout his campaign, he insisted that he only received small donations, not large ones.
According to the movement’s official record, over US$5 million had been donated until December 2016, and 70 percent of it was donated by only 669 people.
But in April 2017, when the media began pressuring Macron to reveal how he funded his campaign, his team was ordered to insist that only 1.7 percent of people donated over US$5,000.
The fundraising campaign officially took place between April 2016, when the movement was founded, and April 2017, when Macron was elected. But it unofficially began in the spring of 2016, when Macron was still the economy minister of the former government.
Another investigation, echoed by Arret sur Images, found that Macron organized a fundraising event last October in Uccle, an upper-class neighborhood of the Belgian capital of Brussels, with over 40 of France’s richest business men and women, who relocated there in order to pay fewer taxes.
The attack on Unions, in the French case the ‘coddled’ , ‘spoiled’ railroad workers who are engaging in Rolling Strikes, is the hallmark of the Neo-Liberal. But back to the two defenders of the Oligarchy, Derbyshire and Pedder, and their manufactured hero/prophet M. 37%.
The address on the future of European democracy that he delivered in the shadow of the Parthenon displayed both his strengths and his weaknesses. Invoking Hegel and de Gaulle’s culture minister André Malraux — it can never be said that the president wears his learning lightly — Macron called on his neighbours to join him in “refounding Europe”. “This was vintage Macron,” Pedder writes. “Grandiose, historically sweeping, overly intellectual, stylistically extravagant, baffling, but also admirable.”
Then the Melodrama begins:
That adviser was right, Pedder argues. Macron has called Berlin’s bluff. In a little over a year in the Elysée Palace, he has passed controversial labour market reforms, cut taxes for investors, reduced the deficit and emerged from a bruising encounter with powerful rail unions more or less unscathed (for now).
The Battle is between the Germans and Macron’s unslakable hunger to dominate the World Stage is the intermediate goal of his Jupertarian Politics. His ascension to the Leader of a ‘Reformed EU’ being his ultimate goal. Should the reader look to the ‘Consecration of the Emperor Napoleon I and Coronation of the Empress Josephine in the Cathedral of Notre-Dame de Paris on 2 December 1804’ by Jacques-Louis David for an historical antecedent to Macron’s Hubris?
In the actual painting it is possible to see the outline of what was originally painted: Napoleon holding the crown above his own head, as if placing on himself.
This should dispel doubt from the readers mind that Ms Pedder is not quite an acolyte as Derbyshire reminds that reader. Some selective quotation is enlighteneing, yet Ms. Pedder’s political infatuation with the Macron charisma is a continuing state, even though it reaches the level of low political comedy, as presented by Derbyshire:
It was also, as Pedder concedes, an example of how his soaring vision and ambition can often threaten to curdle into grandiloquence. Macron shares the Gaullist obsession, to which all French presidents must genuflect, with the projection of “grandeur” on the international stage.
Invoking Hegel and de Gaulle’s culture minister André Malraux — it can never be said that the president wears his learning lightly — Macron called on his neighbours to join him in “refounding Europe”. “This was vintage Macron,” Pedder writes. “Grandiose, historically sweeping, overly intellectual, stylistically extravagant, baffling, but also admirable.”
It is one of the merits of the book that the author doesn’t allow her evident admiration of Macron to blind her to his shortcomings — or to the fact that there is no guarantee that all his grand schemes will bear fruit. His plans for further integrating the eurozone are a case in point.
For all his paeans to merits of the free market and his boosting of France as the “start-up nation”, it is a mistake, Pedder writes, to think of Macron as a “pure liberal in the English-speaking economic sense”. While he insists that it is idle to suppose that developed economies can opt out of globalisation, he also believes that governments have a duty to “deal with the excesses of global capitalism”.
It might be tempting to conclude from this that Macron is merely reheating Clinton and Blair-era “Third Way” politics. But Pedder suggests that it is better to see him as the inheritor of a distinctively French social-democratic tradition known as the “deuxième gauche” (second left) associated with former Socialist prime minister Michel Rocard.
In an interview with the author, Macron told her that he was a “liberal in a Nordic sense”.
The notion that Macron is a ‘“liberal in a Nordic sense”’ is purest self-congratulatory pose, or just call it what it is a lie! Mr. Derbyshire hints at the Actual Macron as ‘reheating Clinton and Blair-era “Third Way” politics.’ posed as a tempting, but wrong characterization of Macronism, which is, in sum, Neo-Liberalism à la française, not “deuxième gauche” (second left). Clearly Macron is the front man for 669 very wealthy Europeans, and 40 of France’s wealthiest tax evaders: Oligarchs.