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France nears boiling-point as three million take to streets


Aindriu

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Jun 28, 2007
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The French know how to protes - not us meek & mild lot.

FRANCE'S President Nicolas Sarkozy could face the greatest challenge of his presidency in the next few days as a month-old protest against pension reform swells toward outright confrontation.
More than three million demonstrators marched yesterday against the president's plans to raise the standard retirement age from 60 to 62. Tens of thousands of students joined the marches, threatening to radicalise the protests against a deeply unpopular presidency.
Militant union branches in the railway and oil-refining industries were pushing last night for a showdown with Mr Sarkozy, who has made reform of the loss-making state pension system the make-or-break issue of his final 20 months in office.
After a series of 24-hour strikes in the past six weeks, militant workers were expected to vote last night and this morning for the kind of open-ended stoppages that have overturned previous attempts to reform the French social system.
Full article here.

When oh when will it happen here?
 

j26

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There were some attempt ages ago - the public sector strike, and the weekly protests outside the Dail, but we were too busy turning on each other to notice the opportunities.
 

wexfordman

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And the two of you are outside the dail now with you placards yes ?
 

j26

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And the two of you are outside the dail now with you placards yes ?
I wouldn't be able to afford the train fare to Dublin every week, but I've been at every local protest and some Dublin ones.

What have you done?
 

truthisfree

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The state pensions budget is already €32bn in deficit. With people living longer and fewer young people in the workforce, the annual losses will more than double in the next 20 years.

The young marchers made it clear that they were "sick" with Mr Sarkozy's presidency -- especially his campaign against Roma immigrants.
Glad to see that bit!
 

dresden8

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by the 5th post the bickering starts - J26, you are a prophet!
Actually it started in the 4th.

I'm one of the people the FF scumbags on this site wanted batonned off the streets by the public order unit. I'm not taking any crap from the likes of him.
 

galleyslave

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Actually it started in the 4th.

I'm one of the people the FF scumbags on this site wanted batonned off the streets by the public order unit. I'm not taking any crap from the likes of him.
no it didnt...petunia
 

laidback

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Can't see what the French have to complain about.

Retirement at 60 is very young - a move to 62 is hardly draconian. And how is the pension deficit to be tackled if this change isn't made? Have the protesters made any positive suggestions?
 

darkhorse

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The French know how to protes - not us meek & mild lot.


Full article here.

When oh when will it happen here?
Funny how its the PS workers who are the first to protest and strike
When our greatest financial difficulties arise from massive over-expenditure on the PS itself
Perhaps in Ireland the PS know which side their bread is buttered on...
 

SeanieFitz

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hasn't happened here yet as the government, IN&M and ibec have succeeded in dividing the middle class, divide and conquer. Unions have done very little to counter this. if it doesn't happen we will end up with 2 classes in this country, the rich and the poor, the middle class will simply disappear and the rich will be able to afford the best of private medical care, education etc. the last time the ps organised protests they were vilified.
ml o'leary on matt coopers show yesterday complaining about air traffic controllers, he got a much easier "ride" form Matt than Joe Higgins got.
 

Sync

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Yeah Tol, spoke to some friends in Paris yesterday, it was far less than the organisers said, less than 100k. Most of these were students, so quite frankly, who gives a toss what they think. The police are saying it was 1.2 mil countrywide, the protesters saying it was 3.5 million. If you split the difference between those figures, it amounts to about 3% of the French protesting. So the same as if 150,000 people protested countrywide in Ireland.

To be clear: They're not protesting cuts, or bailouts or general unhappiness with Sarko. This is a very specific strike against pension reform plans to raise the age from 65 to 67 by 2025.

The bizarre, yet typically French, thing is, that even though the majority of people are in favour of the strikes, the majority are also in favour of the pension age rise.
 

Bebsaboo

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Jun 30, 2010
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The deficit will still be there and that still has to be tackled. I think the public v private stems from a realisation that the deficit needs to be reduced but with private sector workers believing that it has to come from a reduction to the PS. The PS are resisting that out of self-interest which is only natural.
 

Clanrickard

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The bizarre, yet typically French, thing is, that even though the majority of people are in favour of the strikes, the majority are also in favour of the pension age rise.
Long term France is screwed. They have run a deficit every year since the early seventies. They have youth unemployment of 25% and that has been in place for the last decade. Worst of all they cling on remorselessly to their bloated social welfare system.
 

Super8

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France has at last woken up to the fraud Sarkozy is. Let's hope they find their heart again and start to fight back against rampant unchecked capitalism.
 

locke

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I was at the Paris Motor Show last week. At one point, the CGT union invaded the main hall to protest.

Having made a lot of noise for 10 minutes, they stopped and switched to taking a look around the cars. I wonder how many turned up to avoid the entry fee.

I go to France for work regularly enough and I really don't detect an appetite for a big showdown on this. Most of the noise is coming from students and the transport unions. You're going to see a series of strikes, but I can't see them getting anywhere.
 

Thac0man

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Twitter
twit taa woo
I saw Segolene Royale on France24 urging more protest and claiming kids as young as 15 should be out on the streets. She is loving this. However I can't but remeber her own campign pledge when she ran for President; no actual reform, jusr increase borrowing and spending. So no matter how bad Frances fiscal situation is they would really be in the sh*thouse now if Sego had won. Frances current budget deficit would pale in comparison to the one Sego would have run up.
 
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