Energy and Power Politics: The French vs. The German Model Posted by Hichem on May 25, 2012 in Culture, Vocabulary
Don’t bury Nicolas Sarkozy just yet!
Now that François Hollande is French President, he will have to answer, sur le terrain (on the ground), to some of the tougher questions raised by his ex-rival Sarkozy during their Presidential debate.
Let’s pick up from the portion of the debate where we left it last time.
Hollande and Sarkozy in the last Presidential Debate—Some points are still very relevant, now more than ever!
(Start from 32:15)
♦ L’ALLEMAGNE (GERMANY) as a MODEL:
Ok, tell me, is there a country, in Europe or the OCDE [in English OECD], which did better than France?
The United States and Germany fared much better than us.
Now let’s talk again about les accords compétitivité-emploi (the competitivity work agreements): You talk about the German example. But in Germany, they have social partners who are well-respected, and a system which protected workers from being fired.
Your TVA [Taxe sur la Valeur Ajoutée, a consumption tax], which you want to introduce in October, means 300 Euros less for a couple of “smicars” [“smicar” refers in French Slang to an employee who earns the minimum wage called “le SMIC“.] That is unacceptable!
Concerning the SMIC: I will make sure it is adjusted in function of growth: It will go up whenever growth goes down, and vice versa.
I will also lock the price of energy, especially the price of l’essence (fuel) for the first three months, and I will make sure to help the families as well.
It’s the first time in the world that les syndicats publically support a Presidential candidate. This is very dangerous: Whenever syndicats get mixed up with politics, they cannot protect the workers.
That is not true, because in Germany the syndicats are very much involved in politics.
♦ ENERGY Politics:
Les heures supplémentaires (working overtime) has helped the purchasing power, but you want to stop that, and instead you want to raise le SMIC. I wonder why?
You said you would lock the price of fuel: But what will you lock, exactly? You won’t be locking the price of the crude oil barrel that you’ll buy. You won’t impose your price on countries like Saudi Arabia…
Oh come on, you know that I mean the distribution price of the refined product: the fuel.
But France is not an isolated island! Out of whose pocket is the difference going to be paid? There are not three pockets out there, only two of them: The pocket of the consumer and the pocket of le contribuable (the taxpayer.) To pay two cents less on a litter of fuel is equivalent to 1 billion of Euros more in deficit. How will you be able to lock the price of fuel and in the same time reduce the deficit?
I will primarily target the speculating distributors of fuel. Those who on purpose keep stockpiles of fuel at a low market price, then decide to sell it whenever it is best for them! Those distributors are the ones who will pay, not le contribuable (the taxpayer.)
Since oil prices are skyrocketing, is it not madness to suggest dismantling half of our nuclear energy capacity?
Not true, but we’ll get to that later.
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