Apr 21, 2017

Rundle: for France’s traditional left, le fin

Barring a miracle or collective polling error -- neither of which favour a secular mainstream party -- Benoit Hamon and the Parti Socialiste are toast.

Guy Rundle — Correspondent-at-large

Guy Rundle


French presidential election candidate for the  French Socialist party Benoit Hamon

They've cordoned off the whole of the Place de la Republique, the big square at the north-east end of the centre of Paris, above the river, where the scruffy and groovy areas around the Gare du Nord begin. Hundreds of grey metal barriers have been erected at each street in, an ugly blight on the honey-stone facades, the presses and tabacs kiosks with iron lace and frosted glass. At each entrance, French cops, robocops, encased in bullet proof mats, and a dozen holsters for all conceivable weapons: two guns, taser, gas grenade, petit gas mask, the works. They are bowed over by their gear, teenage mutant ninja turtles. Blown over by any blast, they would be unable to get up again.

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12 thoughts on “Rundle: for France’s traditional left, le fin

  1. craig

    Grundle, that is a terrible headline. I’m sure it wouldn’t have been lost on most people had the whole thing been written in Frankays.

  2. zut alors

    ‘…DJ Rag — a sort of demonic mix of James Ashby and Plastic Bertrand, if you can imagine that…’

    Tres bizarre. Not to mention mentally challenging.

  3. davidh

    Guy, pedant moment. It’s “la fin.”

  4. Dion Giles

    “Marseilles, where Marine Le Pen was running a rally of spitting hatred, in a city become a harbour of spite.,” Guy Rundle writes.
    So a candidate is “sptting hatred” by opposing the unelected EU bureaucracy in Brussels (which Britain has now rejected) and the march of Islam which has just executed another French cop and maimed three others. It’s not those who gunned down French cops and targeted passersby in two or three European cities plus London who are spitting hatred but Front National by standing up to them. This article is appeasement gone mad.

    1. Matt Hardin

      Seeing you seem to be in favour of collective punishment, i.e. blaming all Muslims for the crimes of a minority, to be consistent you should be supporting the methods of the terrorists i.e. killing the innocent to punish a nation for its actions.

      1. Dion Giles

        Re Matt Hardin: Appeasers always conflate a hateful religion with the human beings who are sucked in by it. That way they can protect the religion – which is bigotry on steroids – by referring to it through its substitute. This is a tried and tested Islamic technique perfected by the ISIS criminals who surround themselves with civilians when threatened by anti-ISIS fire.

        1. Matt Hardin

          You seem confused to me. First off I only mentioned religion because that is what you were talking about. My argument would’ve the same if you proposed punishing all blue eyed people for the actions of the Blue Eyes Liberation Front. Second I agree with you Islam (indeed all religions) results in “bigotry on steroids” in a significant minority of its adherents. Look to Northern Ireland, the former Yugoslavia, Sri Lank and India for other examples of religious violence. Third, I am not appeasing anyone. I condemn th criminal act, I regard the targeting of civilians as collective punishment and reject the establishment of a theocratic caliphate.

          I am an atheist. If religion dissappeared, I’d be overjoyed. But that’s not going to happen. I don’t happen to believe that because you have the same god as a criminal that you are therefore deserving of punishment. I also believe that people who act peacefully and don’t try and force others to act in accordance with their idiosyncratic beliefs should be allowed to believe what ever they want and live in the same safety as everyone else.

          1. Will

            Perfectly put, Matt. Religions are superstitions, not crimes: only acts can be crimes. But what we will achieve by the defacto criminalisation of particular religions (Islamic variants, mostly, of course) is the mass production of the most determined of criminals. Which, one suspects, is exactly what our hard right here secretly wants: Not just an enemy, but an eternal scourge.

  5. Duncan Gilbey

    For France’s traditional left, the Financial Review?

  6. Dog's Breakfast

    “…. please support our project so that we will die before it does, with the illusion that it persists. (There’s a lot of it about, especially in Australia).”


    Je suis un rock star.

    Ca plane pour moi.

    A rollicking read, covering more of western philosophical thought than I know. Thanks again.

  7. AR

    Unlike bumBoil Shlernt’s shadow sideboard..sorry cabinet, the Anabaptists of Munster (whoever the hell they were) probably believed in something.
    It would be an hallucination indeed to imagine that Shortarse would even know who Arendt or Weil were, never mind what they thought about the price of fish.
    For all the fun to be had mocking frogs, easily the most pretentious of nonentities for the last century or two, the outcome of the 2nd round within a day of the UK election will be the harbinger of… something pretty serious, both of which will have an influence, probably malign but nowt else is on offer, on the looming German election.
    The EU is dead, it just hasn’t stopped moving because of the necrotic worms in Bruxelles but anyone not terrified by what will take the space has not being paying attention.

  8. Dion Giles

    We read today, and heard on Lateline last night, of Marine Le Pen taking advantage of the latest Moslem atrocity to attack the cult which gives rise to it. Sounds a bit like Mr Churchill taking advantage of the Nazi invasion of the Sudetenland to attack the Nazi cult. Wicked Marine Le Pen, wicked Winston Churchill.

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