France goes to the polls on Sunday to elect a new President. If you haven\’t been following this election, then you are missing something. It\’s a very crucial election and is much more fun for an outsider to follow than the US Presidential elections.
This blog largely tries to steer clear of political issues and focuses on the economic ones. So, although this blogger has strong views on the candidates and knows who he would vote for if he had a vote, he will avoid discussing that here. Instead, the focus is strictly on economic policies, which is of course, only one dimension of evaluating any candidate.
Who\’s the most dangerous of them all economically ? If the pat answer is Marine Le Pen, a more polished version of Trump, think again. Introducing Jean-Luc Mélenchon, the far left candidate who is currently surging in the polls . Nearly 20% of France want him as President .
Here are his economic policies, without comment
- 90% tax rate for those earning more than Euro 400,000 a year
- 273 billion Euros higher spending over 5 years
- 16% rise in minimum wage to Euros 1326 a month (Rs 90,000 a month)
- 35 hour work week.
- Exit the Euro
- Abolish the treaties prescribing a target of deficit to GDP . In other words, simply print money
- Exit EU, a la Britain, if necessary
- Join Alba the economic pact between Cuba and Venezuela. Honourable observers of this pact are Iran and Syria
- Right to housing to become a constitutional right
- Nationalise utility companies
There is more, but this is enough for the time being.
The system of French elections is such that that he is unlikely to get through even in the first round. But it should give a pause for thought that a full 20% of the French electorate is willing to subscribe to such lunacy.
The right to vote is a heavy responsibility. Concepts like protest vote, angry voter, etc are deadly pitfalls. You are supposed to consider the options carefully and vote according to what you think is best for your country. You can have differing views, but irresponsible exercise of the franchise is catastrophic.
If you are of the view that this is all fear mongering, capitalism has failed, and we should give such a philosophy a try (yes, I am talking to you , if you have felt the Bern), then all I will say is that this has been tried before and the example is there for all to see. Venezuela.
The loony left is even more dangerous than the rabid right.