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Running in place from Place to Place

  “Well, in our country,” said Alice, still panting a little, “You’d generally get to somewhere else—if you run very fast for a long time, as we’ve been doing.” “A slow sort of country!” said the Queen. “Now, here, you see, it takes all the running you can do, to keep in the same place. […]

An Angry Shade of Blue in France’s (Real) Great Debate

  Last year, reacting to the escalating turmoil of the Gilets Jaunes movement, Emmanuel Macron launched a campaign of Great Debates – country-spanning town meetings, if you will, led personally by the ‘who needs sleep?’ President. These were billed as invitations to the forgotten, especially those outside urban areas, to voice their ire and perhaps […]

Reading the Results – A Bulletin in Bullet Points on Europe

After days of staggered voting, the results are in today for both France and Europe. With some surprises: – At 50.13% participation in France far exceeded expectations. Hooray! – ‘Rural’, a category assumed to be more Euro-skeptic, turned out more strongly than ‘urban.’ – That said, the pro-European center can be considered to have held […]

How Will the World Spell Europe?

  Starting Next Month, How Will the World Spell Europe? For folks living on other continents, or in the farther eastern reaches of this vast Eurasian land mass, the upcoming EU elections may look as compelling as a snail race and as comprehensible as a long-form tax return. Won’t Europe hang together anyway, now that […]

Up for judgment: Macron’s Great Debate, and the ‘re-looking’ of the Champs Elysees.

Part 1 It is desperately unfashionable to spare a good word for President Emmanuel Macron. You may call him elitist, aloof, politically deaf and dumb, an imperious windbag or vacillating introvert, a conservative in progressive clothing or vice-versa, or all of the above. Just don’t give him any credit. The current global nationalist/populist movements have […]

Sing along if you can remember: Oh! Oh! Les Champs-Elysées…

‘What’s gone so wrong with France suddenly? What’s the story with the Yellow Vests?’ Outside of La Hexagone I’m pelted with such questions, as if coming from Paris confers some sort of special insight. It doesn’t. After five months of increasingly violent protest, no one, including the actors themselves, really knows where the roots of […]

The Drama of The Yellow Vests: Act Four

Those talking heads who say they saw the insurrection coming? – in this amplitude, in this form? are lying. Or, at best, kidding themselves. A few facts, as the rain and the sanitation trucks collaborate to try to clean the trashed streets of Paris: Yesterday didn’t quite add up to the apocalypse that some, including […]