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Strikers, France. Screenshot from YouTube

France rises up against Macron’s pension reforms

France has decided: Emmanuel Macron is anything but an enfant prodige. The national strike which started on Thursday, is the biggest in decades as workers protest pension reforms.

Published: December 7, 2019, 8:31 am

    The French government said that more than 800 000 people protested across the country while French police arrested at least 90 people in Paris on Thursday evening, according to the Associated Press.

    The party of President Macron, La Republique En Marche (LREM) is now perceived as the party of tax revenues and while the French, during the French presidential elections of 2017, had hoped that Macron would take into consideration the needs of the public sector, they have had their hopes dashed.

    It was already clear, however, that there was a widespread concern that after President Hollande, someone would not say no to the diktats of the “technocracy of Brussels”. In fact, the success of Marine Le Pen was the first indicator of that concern. And the “new Napoleon” Macron, has failed in his task of keeping the country united.

    The first mandate of Emmanuel Macron has not stood up to the test of social balance. The points-based pension, which is a measure aimed at making the public system and the private system essentially become equivalent, does not meet the needs of state workers.

    France, for a couple of days now, has been completely paralyzed. From the closed gates of schools to police stations without officers, and empty railway stations: the purpose of the government with their reform was certainly not to create a revolt after the movement of the Yellow Vests.

    The clashes and violence, with the presence of black bloc at this week’s demonstrations, has been highlighted but not the animosity that many in France feel towards Macron, and which is not the result of disorganized chaos.

    In Paris, Nantes, Bordeaux, Montpellier, regardless of the place of residence, those taking to the streets are unhappy. And the French Bonapartist tradition supports the search for a common national spirit, which today is completely against the policies put in place by Macron.

    The president of the Republic will only have the consent of the upper middle class and the progressive left in 2022 when he tries for re-election, because at the moment, the unity of the country appears to have been frayed permanently.

    The government, in the face of these massive mobilizations, has opted for silence, while the executive has announced new cuts in favor of the private sector and, specifically, the automotive sector.

    La Républiche En Marche appears out of sync with the priorities of those who protest. The lack of political reaction to the paralysis is supposed serve to calm the nerves. But there is already a date for the new mobilization: Tuesday, December 10.

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