Wednesday, February 21, 2007

The Socialist Republic of France?

This link is to an article about one of the two leading nominees for the French Presidency, Ms Segolene, and her platform of obvious socialist policy. It appears she is gaining in the polls and poses a very real threat to win that election. Ever since the demise of the Soviet Union the French, along with much of Western Europe, has been gradually migrating to socialist policies, but if Segolene wins the election that migration will be complete. France will, even if unofficially, be a socialist nation (if they aren’t already). The sinking French economy seems to be bothering no one, so it wouldn’t surprise me a bit if they chose this path.

Here’s a quote from a recent speech: "The unfettered rein of financial profit is intolerable for the general interest," she said. "You told me simple truths. You told me you wanted fewer income inequalities. You told me you wanted to tax capital more than labor. We will do that reform."

The unfettered rein of financial profit is wanted fewer income inequalities…


We’ll keep an eye on this. It’s ironic that France survived two world wars, millions of lives lost, while defending their basic freedoms, and in the end will eventually willingly choose to relinquish the very freedoms they fought, along with many allies, to defend. What a shame.


Robert M. said...

Socialist canadites are interesting to listen to. There was a debate between a socialist, Democrat and Republican in Maine once, for for the Senate race I think. The socialist and the Democrat agreed on most social issues. The French are almost socialist anyway though.

Dan Trabue said...

You know, don't you, that socialism doesn't have to look like USSR dictatorship? That there is such a thing as a socialist democracy?

That people can choose to say, "We think those who have gained much have an obligation to contribute much" and that if that's the way they wish to run their country, it doesn't mean that they are choosing oppression?

Socialism has its problems, to be sure. As does capitalism. Either one in the extreme (ie, unfettered socialism or unfettered capitalism) have proven themselves to have harmful results.

If you don't like a country that taxes its people more, you don't have to live there. If you don't like the rates that the US taxes its people, you don't have to live here.

All responsible nations will always have to walk the line between having gov't do too much and gov't doing too little and we need not demonize those that choose another path.

John The Patriot said...

A socialist democracy? That's a first. Isn't that what Castro calls it everytime he wins a Cuban "election"? Is there any example in history of a socialist democracy that does not eventually lead to oppression?

Of course not, because no free people will ever choose socialism - which is a system that inevitably benefits others more than it benefits you. Why would we elect to live in such a system? No one would, which is why dictatorial oppression is needed to maintain any socialist government. France thinks socialism is the way to go, but so did the Bolsheviks. It only took about seven decades for them to realize they had made a mistake. How many times does socialism have to fail before our American socialists and elite leftists admit that it is a failure?

Dan Trabue said...

No, there have been socialist democracies. That is, free republics or democracies where the people have voted to have some socialist values. Nicaragua, for instance. Venezuela. France, to some degree, as you've already noted.

I'm not saying that it's a good idea. I don't want state-controlled everything.

But it HAS happened in reality and it doesn't have to equal totalitarianism.

I have already said I think socialism has troubles, I'm not advocating it. But I AM advocating people having the freedom to choose what sort of gov't and economic structure they want in their country.

I get a bit tired of the boorishness of those who support democracy until what The People choose is different than what they want.

Dan Trabue said...

Let me reiterate: I'm not defending socialism. I recognize that both systems have problems and come down on the side of a regulated capitalism.

But any nation that would support terrorists to undermine another nation merely because they elected a president with socialist leanings (as we did in Nicaragua) is a nation that has severe issues with democracy itself.

John The Patriot said...

First, Nicaragua and Venezuela held elections as a mere formality. Surely you're not citing these nations as legitimate democracies. There was nothing legal about their elections, sort of the same way Castro wins elections with 100% of the vote.

Second, I have no problem with people "choosing" socialism, if the choice is legal. All I'm saying is that it's not a very smart thing to choose. Socialism has never and will never work. If France chooses socialism, I say good luck. They'll be having a revolution within the century.

Democracy is how God intended man to live, otherwise He wouldn't have created us with free will. Socialism is the anti-free will form of government. I don't have a choice when it comes to financially supporting things like Social Security and Medicare, that's socialism and it's not the way for humans to live. There is a reason why it has led to nothing but failure.

Dan Trabue said...

Yes, I'm citing those as legitimate (if flawed) elections.

(I know more about it than Venezuela, so I'll speak to Nicaragua).

I've been to Nicaragua, I've talked to Nicaraguans. I have friends who have lived in Nicaragua. Clearly, Ortega is a popular leader with much popular support (he was just re-elected, you know).

Socialism is not in and of itself anti-democracy any more than capitalism is (and one can make a decent case that unfettered capitalism is quite hostile to democracy).

You're confusing socialism (flawed as it is) with tyranny. They need not be one and the same and history holds examples of democracy and socialism working together.

Most (all?) countries don't choose pure socialism or pure capitalism, but rather some cross of the two.

You want to see democracy go up and smoke? Support unfettered capitalism. The Free Trade Agreements, for instance, take away sovereign choice from local communities. Some companies have already sued local municipalities and won under Section 11 of NAFTA. The "crime" of the locals? Wanting to protect their water.

Support Democracy all you want and I'm right there with you.

Just realize that neither socialism nor capitalism are inherently opposed to capitalism, it all depends on how they're structured.

And don't talk about Nicaragua and democracy until you've been there and talked to the people or until you have lived there. You just don't know what sort of terrorism was done in our name in opposition to democracy.

John The Patriot said...

While I respect the opinion of your friends, I don't think those opinions are allowed to over rule facts. And your statement that we supported terrorism in opposition to democracy is just flat wrong.

The Sandanista regime was not democracy. They seized private land, enacted government control of much of the nation's agriculture, shut down newspapers that spoke against them and violated the human rights of many groups - namely Jews. This is what the US opposed, by way of the Contras. This was not democracy.

Of course, there were terrible things in Nicaragua, as is the case in war, but to lay the blame on the US and their backing of the Contras is inaccurate and loaded with spin. Are you suggesting that none of these horrible things would have happened if we had just let the communists have the country without any intervention?

The violence died down AFTER free elections were allowed, however questionable those elections may have been. Yes, Ortega recently won with about 35% of the popular vote while Jimmy Carter observed the legality of the vote, and we all know how unbiased towards communism he is. I'm sure Lenin had similar approval numbers.

I know we got off target. You have some points about the terrible things in Nicaragua, but I couldn't allow you to suggest that it was OUR doing. The Contras had every right to oppose their oppressors. If they deliberately targeted civillians (which by calling them terrorists I'm assuming that's what you say they did) then they were wrong.

If there is one thing the people there have demonstrated, it's that they DO want democracy and the socialists attempt to implement their form of government led to a lot of bloodshed and trampling of basic human rights despite whatever promises had been made. We'll see what Ortega does with his new leadership role, but don't expect anything wonderful.

Dan Trabue said...

You don't appear to know the reality on the ground in Nicaragua in the 1980s. Where do you get your information?

This is straying, but the facts are Nicaragua had a democracy. They held flawed but legitimate elections. The sandinistas had hugely popular support. These are facts.

Consider reading something besides rightwing sources. (I'm making an assumption here that you're getting your info from faulty sources, since you didn't provide any links to such ill-informed opinion - the Contras WERE terrorists. They were made up largely of members of the oppressive Somoza regime which the Sandinistas and the Nicaraguan people overthrew in the 1970s. They went to villages and killed, raped and kidnapped civilians. They didn't wage war against an army, they terrorized civilians. How else would you define that?)

Again, I'm with you in thinking that I don't want fullblown socialism here at all. I'm just saying people ought to be able to choose their own paths.