Francis Turner on Macron v Le Pen

This post by Francis Turner over at L’Ombre de l’Olivier is worth reading, and pretty accurately reflects my own views on the upcoming final round of the French presidential election:

The French presidential race has come down to a similar situation to the US one last year. There are two choices and both are looking pretty bad. So if you are a French voter how do you decide which one to not vote for?

Go and read it all!


31 thoughts on “Francis Turner on Macron v Le Pen

  1. I only caught the German News coverage of it- dosed with some pretty unsubtle bias towards Macron (German MSM in general not having learned from the whole Trump thing). And they never fail to call Le Pen a ‘right wing extremist’, for those viewers who didn’t catch any of the subtler hints.

    The little I saw of it I was rather impressed by her passion. I’m sure a lot of what she said was ‘le bollocks’ but she put it across with conviction, passion. How much that will sway French voters I have no idea & my french is lousy. But my impression was she managed that rarest of feats for a female politician, she managed to sound forceful, with the power of her convictions without sounding like either a fish wife, harridan or shrew. May could take notes. May tries to do a Thatcher but is missing the cast iron balls and steel will.
    Macron just looked like a plastic JFK somewhat out of his depth, cruising on photogenicy and flash light charm, and give the man his due, I wouldn’t want to face MlP on national TV.

    German MSM tried to portray MlP as some ranting demagogue, a ‘hitler in a skirt’. But all I saw was rather charming mature woman ‘schooling’ Macron.

  2. The Blocked Dwarf,

    I didn’t watch the debate but followed it on Twitter, and most of the sensible people thought it was about even or Le Pen had the upper hand. Then I read this over at Nourishing Obscurity and this over at Samizdata, so make of it what you will!

  3. “Then I read this over at Nourishing Obscurity and this over at Samizdata,”
    Hmm not the impression i got from the clips shown on German TV -who surely would have gone out of their way to highlight any ‘mad cow’ moments I suspect. But as said, my French and tbh my interest is not sufficient that I would have wanted to have watched the debate. Nor do I have a particularly good insight into the French mindset. I can usually guess which way the Germans will ‘jump’ but the French are mystery to me…and themselves I think.
    But as much as i dislike her politics, i found myself warming to the woman. Probably because i was brought up on the late night (BBC2?) ‘French Films’ of the 80’s with their mature actresses who just couldn’t wait to get le Kit off .

  4. German MSM also delighted in reporting that she was ‘egged’ in Brittany.

  5. We can only wait and see. However, with Macron, one gets Merkel so probably better the French stay French.

  6. A little O/T but if anyone was doubting what I said the other day about May having the best friend a girl seeking re-election could have in Juncker:
    Aside from personally invading the Falklands or declaring Gibraltar will belong to Spain after Brexit , he really couldn’t have made it any clearer. Of course the more froth spittled Brexiteurs will think he actually meant it but Juncker knows the linguistical numbers as well as any other Polyglot (he speaks 4 or was it 5 fluently?). If he had given the speech in his own native language (which to French ears would have sounded suspiciously like German) that would have been very different. I assume he choose French to bolster Macron as well as May. (ie ‘look the EU still values French, vous and votre culture etes still important’).

  7. If grab a granny wins, I can’t see him lasting a full term, once the crisis hits his international banker connections will be used against him and it will be off with his head.

  8. Macron looks like France’s version of Trudeau Jr; form over content.

    Le Pen is a protectionist national socialist (I’m not saying she’s like Hitler, just that she likes her socialism to have a strong fence around it).

    What a truly awful choice.

  9. Well, at least the French don’t have to vote. Unlike Australians.

    And us too, if Polly Toynbee ever has her way!

  10. @JuliaM,

    “Attend the polling station or submit a postal vote”.

    That’s the compulsory part.

    Google how many spoiled votes there are (“donkey votes” in the vernacular) to see what many of us think about it.

    I draw a male appendage with the words “none of the above incompetents or looters”, for example.

  11. So you had to comply in the end, that would be you fully assimilated now TNA.

  12. @bardon,

    Yup. Avoided the AEC folks at the citizenship ceremony and ignored three letters inviting me to register so they did it anyway.

    It must be a special kind of cognitive dissonance for a politician to believe that they have a “mandate” based on that, eh?

  13. The Wikileaks thing is going to be interesting. It’s amusing how the “media blackout” is comforting the Macronies…. while the internet still works.

    Probably the funniest thing about both the Podesta and Macron hacks is that, rather than pretending that any of the embarrassing material is fake, both felt that saying Putin was behind it was going to be a valid defence in front of the electorate.

    What mental contortions must one undergo to believe a voter’s thought process goes thus, “I now know he’s got a dodgy bank account in the Caymans, even though he said he didn’t, but I’ll vote for him anyway because the Russians wanted me to learn that fact”.

  14. Funny how the pre-election email leaks never happen to the blood-and-soil demogogues. I’m sure it’s for no other reason than they’re squeaky clean and all have better IT security…

  15. @Polkamatic,

    Yes, hilarious. Are the emails fake though?

    My point is, some French media aren’t even reporting the leak, let alone the content. What does that say about;

    1. Their agenda
    2. Who “owns” them
    3. Freedom of speech

    What would they have done if it were Le Pen’s emails leaked?

  16. @TNA The media aren’t reporting on the leak because they are not allowed to report on things like this within 24 hours(?) of the vote. The will be prosecuted if they discuss it.

    But that is not of course stopping people from finding out about them using the internet.

    I’d assume the leaks are the work of the Russians. However I’d also assume that most (all?) of the documents released are genuine. Whether or not they are scandalous is another matter but it would not surprise me that they reveal details that show that Macron is indeed bought and paid for by the French establishmet

    The demagogues may actually have better security simply because they have been attacked all the time. Also because they are not a part of the mainstream there is less opportunity for corruption and graft

  17. @FrancisT,

    In that case, Le Monde has broken the law; they’ve reported the leaks have happened but said that they won’t publish because they “don’t have the time” and, more importantly, because the intent of the leak was to ruin his campaign.

    Ponder that 2nd reason for a moment and reword it; “the information may implicate Macron in a crime but we won’t report it because that’s what the Russians want”.

    I’m with you on the reason why the demagogues don’t have anything much too leak; regardless of how distasteful they may be, they’ve. It been close enough to temptation compared to these establishment figures.

  18. The late leak thing fits well within the “off with his head option”.

    Intentionally leaked too late for this election as Le Pen still wouldn’t have the numbers, Macron gets in, the crisis unfolds, probably to do with Erdogan setting the Muslim dogs on him, he maintains open borders, major scandal breaks about the elite “protecting him” and his kind, riots, Le Pen steps up.

    Anything from a few months to a couple of years after the election.

  19. The US and Britain are lucky that they pressed the eject button before the plane crashed, as it were. Various places in Europe may not be so lucky and it might get ugly at some point, once the elites finally get around to having their ‘oh, shit’ moment.

  20. @Bardon

    I assume the whole point is destabilization of France/the EU. I’m not sure that said destabilization won’t end up hurting the interests of the people (i.e. Putin & co) who caused it – what will other oligarchs think if they can’t flash their bling on the Riviera? for example – but maybe they have a plan for that too.

  21. My view is that it’s all about reforming the UN, which starts with reforming the political leadership of each of the five permanent members of the security council. France under Macron would not facilitate such reform, Le Pen cosying up with Putin definitely would.

  22. Is their anything so vulgar as evidence linking the Russians to either then Clinton or Micron hacks? McAfee, the internet security expert, says that any competent hacker is untraceable. In my words, you can no more know he’s from Russia than know he’s from Mars.

  23. @TNA The French media get direct subsidies from the government (to the tune of 400 million euro per year), so don’t expect any impartiality from them.

  24. Good God, I hope for your sakes that doesn’t happen. The dead tree press is dying and the sooner the better in my opinion.

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