[Marxism] Segolene Royal: Is This the Next President of France? (WSJ)
lnp3 at panix.com
Sat Feb 10 07:12:19 MST 2007
Another unlikely "leftist" that Walter Lippmann
has dug up, like a cat presenting its master with
a dead mouse as a gift. Did he notice that the
WSJ article stated the following?
>The 53-year-old mother of four has praised China for the efficiency
>of its justice system and criticized the most sacred of French cows,
>the 35-hour workweek.
There is *no* justice system in China. There is an injustice system.
During Chen Guancheng's retrial, his lawyers
complain key witnesses were kidnapped. Harsh
sentences and beating inflicted on the sons of
Rebiya Kadeer, defender of Uyghur minority
rights. An anti-AIDS activist is arrested to
prevent him from holding a public forum on the issue.
Beijing (AsiaNews/Agencies) ? China's justice
system continues to strike the country's human
rights activists. The trial of Chen Guangcheng
(an activist against forced abortions) has seen
witnesses disappear. In Xinjiang, two sons of
dissident Rebiya Kadeer were found guilty in tax
evasion. In Beijing an AIDS activist is jailed for organising a public forum.
The blind activist, who focused world attention
on coercive birth-control measures by village
officials in Shandong province, was given an
unusually harsh sentence of four years and three
months in jail in August for damaging property
and organising a mob to disrupt traffic. But he
was granted a surprise retrial late last month
for irregularities (three of Mr Chen's lawyers
were arrested and replaced with court-appointed
counsel). His retrial began yesterday with the
disappearance of four witnesses and the brief detention of one of his lawyer.
His current defence team said four key witnesses
for the defendant were "kidnapped" on Sunday by
local officials, including villager Chen Guanghe,
who was taken away by several unidentified people
in front of the lawyers on Sunday.
Prior to the debates, Royal had made it clear to
the French ruling elites that she was capable of
breaking out of the constraints of the Socialist
Partys traditional rhetoric, which involves
giving lip service to anti-militarism, the
handling of crime as a social problem, the
defence of workers rights and egalitarian aspirations.
In contrast to Jospin, who had, while pursuing
pro-capitalist policies, attempted to distance
himself from Tony Blairs extreme market-oriented
policies, Royal professed her admiration for the British prime minister.
She called for delinquent youth to be taken in
hand by the military, for the weakening of
regulations which prevent school choice from
being the preserve of the middle and upper
classes (i.e., the right wings demand for freedom of choice).
And for doubling of the hours of attendance for
teachers in collèges (catering for ages 11 to
15). She made the demagogic populist proposal
that citizen juries, selected at random, should
assess the performance of elected representatives.
Royal won the nomination not because she put
forward a popular programme, but because she was
systematically built up by the media as the
candidate most likely to beat the contender of
the ruling UMP (Union for a Popular Movement).
As the paper Libération commented, the issue was
not to chose the candidate most suited to
represent the party at the presidential
elections but the candidate most able to beat the right.
It was a question of voter utilea vote for
what would be most useful to gain power. This is
cryptic language for choosing the candidate best
capable of attracting the support of the
bourgeois media and political establishment.
The two outvoted candidates immediately confirmed
that they would rally to the winner. Despite the
fact that Fabius had been a leading opponent of
the partys support for the European constitution
and had adopted a mildly reformist posture
against the openly pro-business positions of his
opponents, his spokesman Claude Bartelone declared:
The only thing that counts now is that the
Socialists should unite under the best possible
conditions, and right now get to preparing the posters and paste.
Fabius supporter SP deputy Jean-Luc Mélenchon,
however, expressed fear of the complete isolation
of the SP from the working class with such an
openly right-wing candidate. He articulated the
need for a left alternative credible enough to
head off working class struggles.
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