I'm Happy About the French Election

Apparently, the fall of the Soviet Union is far enough in the rear view mirror that its time for another object lesson in the real effects of communism.   It's incredible to me that any country would want to actually emulate Greece, but France seems hell-bent to do so.  So all I can say is "way to go, France!  Better you guys than us."

Apparently Obama is already cozying up with Francois Hollande.   These two may be the socialist-corporatist answer to Reagan and Thatcher.  It is interesting that Europe seems to produce an analog to the American President in each generation (or vice versa).    Reagan-Thatcher, Clinton-Blair, now Obama-Hollande.


  1. me:

    Well, you need to remember that all of this is about the nations of Europe voting themselves free money from Germany, with no strings attached. From the perspective of any nation but Germany, this is entirely rational, as long les allemandes remain part of the EU.

  2. Mesa Econoguy:

    Hello French downgrade, goodbye EU (or, more precisely, EU as currently constructed).

    Germany cannot shoulder the entire EFSF burden alone.

    But don't worry, pissed off Germans are nothing to fear....

  3. Todd Ramsey:

    One might suggest that America produced an analog to Margaret Thatcher, rather than vice versa, as she became Prime Minister in 1979.

  4. Rob:

    Well, 52-48% is fairly close. From talking with friends over there, I get the impression that a good chunk of Hollande's vote came from the uneducated portion which voted against Sarkozy (more than for Hollande).

    Also, my first thoughts were the same:
    -Must be nice mooching off Germany
    -Good bye Euro
    -Hopefully our incumbent loses. Although I don't think Gary Johnson will beat Mitt RMoney (...oops did I mix up the letters).

  5. lukas:

    Yes, people voted against the brazenly corrupt Sarkozy rather than for Hollande.

  6. bob sykes:

    Socialist/corporatist is pretty much what Fascism and Nazism were all about.

  7. Craig Loehle:

    The people are voting against austerity in Greece and France, according to the news media. As if one could just vote for money to come into existence, and as if a bankrupt government had no cost/risk. Hollande promising a 75% tax on the wealthy--wow, good luck with that. The people of Greece don't seem to see that their government collapsing will be really ugly. They blame the EU for their problems when it is the EU that has been bailing them out. Simply amazing. The triumph of ideology over reality. Our congress sadly has a milder case of the same disease.

  8. Ted Rado:

    The financial crisisin Europe, and the US as well, indicates that we have screwed up royally. The siren song of living on borrowd money has come home to roost.

    Although finance and economics are not thermodynamics, some of the same principles apply. You cannot createsomething out of nothing. Housing is a good example.

    In the old days, to borrow money for a house, you had to show the bank that you had a steady job, were not already deeply in debt, had a good credit record, etc. Since the bankers did not wish to lose money, they investigated all this very carefully before making a loan. Enter our geniuses in DC. They twisted arms to make bankers loan money to those who were not credit-worthy. Then they set up USG-sponsored agencies to buy the questionable loans. The result was zero down-payment and other gimmicky loans to people who shouldn'y have gotten the loan. The bankers went along to avoid being branded as scrooge, racist, or worse, and the USG would but the s---y loans, thus shielding them from losses. As long as the price of houses continued to skyrocket, this worked. Then the crash.

    The USG dreams up all sorts of schemes to perpetuate the overspending (living on borrowd money) fraud. They dream up QE and other schemes to avoid facing reality. It is all rearranging the deck chairs on the Titanic. Imagine borrowing money from your wife to cover your wild spending. Then she loans money back to you to cover her own deficit. The Federal Gvernment money management is a joke.

    In Europe, the same thing. The ECB, central banks, IMF, etc. are moving money around among themselves while living beyond their means continues.

    Back to the firdt law of thermo: you can't creat something out of nothing. If you could, no ne would have to work. We could all live on borrowd money and go fishing. What utter nonsense.

    The finencial exerts, economists, and politicians who dreamed up all this double-shuffling crap should be ashamed of themselves.

    We are now in a position where the austerity proposals put forward to deal with the debt problem are reducing government reveue more than the they are saving on expenditures. There is no way out other than to inflate away the debt. We are screwed, and we did it to ourselves by electing idiots who promise us the moon.

  9. Bram:

    I thought Jacques Chirac was brazenly, breathtakingly corrupt. Sarkozy is just mildly corrupt and preoccupied with beautiful women. He has become more French than his adopted countrymen.

  10. caseyboy:

    The German people were ready to throw the bit over the Greece bailout, but at least France stick with an austerity program to help. This election assures everyone that France will not be fiscally fit to help anyone including France. And it isn't like the Germans aren't willing to take a hard line, a really hard line. I kind of missed the German Mark. It will be nice to see it make a comeback.

  11. Russ R.:

    Headline: Europe Votes to Replace Voluntary Austerity with Involuntary Austerity.

  12. MJ:

    I get the impression that a good chunk of Hollande’s vote came from the uneducated portion which voted against Sarkozy (more than for Hollande).

    There's actually more to it than that. Hollande received less than half of the ballots cast. Many supporters of Marine LePen and the Front National intentionally left their ballots blank on the vote for the presidency in protest of Sarkozy. This sizable voting bloc could not in any way be construed to be a supporter of Hollande, and so represents another potential obstacle to the adoption of his favored platform.

  13. Capn Rusty:

    Have all the countries of the world ever tried to inflate away their debt at the same time?

  14. Bertha Minerva:

    re. Craig - we have several friends in France and they tell us an exodus of wealthy Frenchmen to places like Switzerland and England has already started.

  15. Smock Puppet, 10th Dan Snark Master:

    >>> I’m Happy About the French Election

    Me too. Few things more fun than the schadenfreude one gets from seeing a bunch of arrogant frogs jumping from their self-created frying pan into a self-created fire after they've just doused themselves with gasoline.

    That hissing and popping sound you hear, that's just the natural byproduct of abysmal stupidity.

  16. Smock Puppet, 10th Dan Snark Master:

    Have all the countries of the world ever tried to inflate away their debt at the same time?

    Won't happen. The first one whose finance minister thinks rationally about rational economics wins.

    Case in point -- from Carpe Diem -- ironically, it might just be Sweden, of all places:
    Anti-Keynesian Supply Side Tax and Spending Cuts in Sweden, and the Finance Minister Behind It.