The Macron revolution is coherent, it is paraphrased from a famous statement: everything that is good for the first of the rope is good for all the French. It consists of replacing the logic of solidarity with an individual financial logic. Some examples.
Macron replaced the ISF (Solidarity Wealth Tax) with the IFI (Real Estate Wealth Tax). Which consists in subtracting financial wealth from the solidarity tax to allow its holder to invest as he sees fit: in other words, to subtract from public decision, from public interest, from solidarity, to give to individual decision , in search of profit which can, of course, lie in investing in French companies (advanced reason) or foreign companies or better in hedge funds or investments of which one of the most powerful is known today by all: BlackRock, the world’s largest asset manager, with nearly $ 7 trillion whose main customers are institutional investors (Wikipedia). The company displays exceptional operating profitability: buy without hesitation (JDD 18/01/20).
Maintaining the tax on real estate wealth is an incentive for the most fortunate to disengage from investment in real estate, taxed, to switch to investment in finance, not taxed. However, it does not seem that there is too much housing in France!
This small gift with declining state resources is accompanied by the reduction of 5 euros per month per household in Personal Housing Assistance (APL). Reduction of levy for large. Recovery on the poorest!
On February 1, the Livret A and Livret du développement durable rates will be lowered to 0.5%, the historically lowest rate, with inflation close to 1%. For the Ministry of Finance, the rate of the Livret A is no longer intended to cover that of inflation (Le Monde 12/01/20). There are 55 million Livret A in France because it is the easiest way for many individuals to have some resources available in case of need. The ministry thinks that this drop in rates should encourage to put the savings in more dynamic investments! More risky! Encourage the poorest to risk their savings! To become a merchant! To tell small holders that they should invest them is to push them to take risks, to convert to stock market speculation? Waking up can be painful in the event of an economic downturn or unexpected funding needs. It was possible to lower the investment ceiling (currently 22,950 euros) and reserve this advice for holders of the most stocked notebooks! Small Livret A holders will probably be content to see their savings deteriorate rather than risk losing them.
The executive knows that its decision is very unpopular and concerns practically all households that hold one or more Livrets A. The remuneration has become paltry. For Bruno Le Maire, maintaining a rate of 0.75% would have been irresponsible in relation to our policy of investment diversification. And irresponsible for the thousands of people waiting for social housing. In fact, reducing the rate to 0.50% will make it possible to build 17,000 additional social housing units and renovate 52,000 of them each year. The measure penalizes savers but would strengthen the housing policy … He forgets to say that to compensate for this drop in the rate of Livrets, he forced social landlords to reduce rents and therefore their means. In other words, he organized a 3-band coup on the back of the poor and a more discreet operation, for the benefit of the banks. Because they benefit from 40% of the sums collected: they will remunerate this savings at the rate of 0.5% instead of 0.75%: a gift of 400 million euros (Liberation 18/01/20). It is interesting to note that the minister justifies this measure by pitting small and poorly housed savers, not to mention the benefits that banks derive from it. He never said how many homes could have been built with the amount of the gift made with the removal of the ISF.
The reform provides for a single retirement contribution rate of 28.12% on wages, but income above 120,000 euros per year will not give entitlement to retirement and will only be subject to a rate 2.81% of contributions, used to help balance the system. The sums which will not contribute to the balance of the system, on salaries above 10,000 euros per month, give a lot of hope to private insurance or other pension or investment funds.
Emmanuel Macron’s Liberal Revolution is underway: all free, all equal, all fraternal; all punters, all against all. Never stand in solidarity!
NB: even if work resumes without the total withdrawal of the reform project, the strikers have obtained a certain number of concessions. And no one knows what will happen in the days, weeks to come … One thing remains, the strikers are suffering a lot financially. Financial solidarity will be appreciated. Morally. Financially.
Below are some images of the January 16, 2020 demonstration in Paris. With greater participation from the teaching and cultural communities … And also police: on the route, many streets were closed by wire barriers …
In a letter to the social partners, the reformist Édouard Philippe is willing to replace the pivotal age with the balanced age of 64 in the plan to reform the pension system. And, as often, the form confirms the substance. Édouard Philippe does not withdraw, he is, in majesty, willing to withdraw, temporarily. Subject to an agreement between the social partners before the end of April. And under threat of taking by prescription the measures necessary to reach equilibrium in 2027.
Laurent Berger, adorning himself with peacock feathers, is proud to have obtained the withdrawal of the pivotal age, a victory for the CFDT! Of course the strike month has nothing to do with it! But he considers it necessary to continue (his) action for a fairer and more united retirement system!
The social partners? Medef agrees, we will not increase contributions. The CFDT also (the CGT is not, in the eyes of the Prime Minister, partners). If, unexpectedly, the CFDT did not agree, what could it do to oppose the orders? Definitely not a strike. Laurent Berger doesn’t like that. Neither demonstrations. If the CFDT had clearly joined the inter-union, the government would not have waited more than a month to abandon a measure that was not planned by Emmanuel Macron!
Who, for the moment, has played well. In the background, he let Édouard Philippe and the CFDT play, to oppose. To get the chestnuts out of the fire at the cost of a long strike, a few transitional measures that do not change anything fundamental to his initial plan. If not to multiply the paths facilitating the division of workers and ultimately leading to the goal decided initially.
Still, it’s not all over. Laurent Berger surpasses satisfaction. MEDEF savored, almost in silence. But the discontent builds up. It will speak. In two (municipal) months? In two years (presidential)?
The President of the Republic, the Prime Minister will not always get by on skills. By multiple categorical variants of transition to arrive at a universal regression system. By a new great debate. Multiple small debates (ecology, police). Macron, at mid-term, did not spark the creative enthusiasm he imagined after his election but two years of hard conflict.
What will this new long conflict lead to, without any real concessions? On bitterness, resignation? On the revolt? A unit, of low intensity certainly, is being born between Yellow Vests and trade unionists. Will it find its political extension?
The President of the Republic, the Prime Minister will closely follow the social movements of next week.
President Macron and his government want to distort (déformer/réformer) pensions, in particular by abolishing special regimes, by establishing a point of financial equilibrium … (1) He has also decided to abolish the regime of the President of the Republic. Could have done better for health and social security: retire.
In 1982, an ordinance instituted retirement at 60, for 150 quarters (37.5 years) of contributions, at the full rate of 50% of the average annual salary. It was the good old days ! In a few weeks of 1993, Édouard Balladur tackled pensions in the private sector: the contribution period for full-rate retirement rose to 160 quarters (40 years), with a discount of 2.5% per missing quarter. The pension, calculated over the best 10 years, progressively over the 25 years, is no longer indexed to wages but to inflation. How to separate active and retired workers.
The new world on the move (La République en marche) follows the old pattern of unraveling.
É. Philippe: current retirees will not be affected by the reform. Understood by people aged 65 and over, the only age group which, at 49%, supports the project. Also supported by executives / intellectual professions above 55% against 27% of intermediate professions, 19% of employees and 16% of workers (2).
Today, under the general regime, the legal retirement age is 62. In practice, workers leave full rate at 63.3 years after 41.3 years of activity and the amount is calculated over the best twenty-five years.
To push for its reform, the government puts forward two strong arguments: abolish special regimes, create an universal and just regime. Communication is closer to advertising than to the truth.
The government counts 42 special regimesalongside the General Regime, the Mutualité sociale agricole, the Social Security of the self-employed. In the special regimes, 3 groups: civil service (civil and military officials), companies and public establishments, other regimes around a profession or a company.
The Labor Code (code du travail) recognizes 10 special regimes with 418,776 contributors, 1.4% of the active population, and 930,277 pensioners, according to estimates by the Social Security Accounts Commission for 2019. By integrating civil service and regimes assimilated to regimes special, this total climbs to 4.7 million contributors, or 15.7% of the working population, and 4.3 million beneficiaries (3).
The Ministry of Health and Solidarities puts 11 regimes on the list fixed by decree in December 2014. In its annual reports, Social Security (Séccurité sociale) estimates that there are 13 special and assimilated regimes but does not take into account civil servants, sometimes integrated into special regimes.
In front of this historical diversity, incomprehensible to ordinary people but the fruit of past struggles, Macron speaks of a universal, egalitarian system.
Beyond the intention and over the declarations, the complexity of the situations makes it necessary to adapt to social realities and the balances of power that multiplies the initial, unique model. De Gaulle, more modest, ruled the country of 258 varieties of cheese…
If a Macron reform is successful, there will be a diversity of 10, 11, 13 or 42, with two points in common: tougher conditions for access to retirement and reduction in pensions. All, progressive to be less confrontational … Liberation has published a list of special plans with the number of contributors and pensioners… (appendix 1) To stay quantitative, contributors / pensioners, a few examples show strong differences. To this should be added the diversity of methods: rate, duration of contribution, pension level, etc. The current conflict mainly affects: 2,058,000 civil servants and contributing military personnel for 2,355,000 pensioners; 2,223,000 territorial and hospital officials for 1,155,000 pensioners; 143,000 contributors to SNCF in 2017, 261,000 beneficiaries
Conversely, some plans have a few dozen contributors or pensioners and are in the process of disappearing: the last beneficiary of the Hérault railways fund died in 2017.
The candidate Macron’s program in 2017
Macron proposed an universal pension system where an euro contributed would give the same rights, regardless of when it was paid, regardless of the status of the contributor … without affecting the retirement age, in pensions and the pay-as-you-go system (système par répartition).
Behind this announced simplicity, the reform must take into account many specific cases: caregivers, family situations, life accidents, unemployment, hardship … In total, 132 pages by Jean-Paul Delevoye, to present his proposals, without responding to all questions (4).
The government project
Behind the declarations, simplification, justice, universality, appeared the idea of the government, especially of Edouard Philippe, the pivot point at 64 years because the increase in life expectancy would involve the need to increase the years of work . Which has not been the case until recently.
É. Philippe does not hide the financial nature of this point: it will be up to the steering body of the future system, made up of union and employer representatives, to chart the way to financially balance the system in 2027. So according to his agenda: age of balance, 62 years and 4 months in 2022, 64 years in 2027 to clear the deficit. With the possibility of retiring earlier with a reduced pension (penalty) or later with a bonus. Objective, more than 3 billion euros in savings in 3 years (5).
The pension system has a variable deficit: 2.9 billion euros in 2018, 0.1% of gross domestic product (GDP), according to the Orientation Council for Pensions (COR). According to another report, the deficit could reach 7.9 to 17.2 billion euros in 2025. But spending on pensions should remain stable between 2018 and 2030, from 13.5% to 14% of GDP.
Revenue and expenses
The increase in life expectancy, in number of elderly people and in number of retirees are facts. Revenue and spending on retirees are choices. To obtain their balance, one can increase or decrease expenses and / or receipts.
Discreetly, successive governments have decided to reduce revenues by exempting certain social contributions, reducing public services … Amputated revenues, it is proclaimed the deficit and to restore balance, reduce spending is necessary by a new method of calculating pensions including the famous point or the number of retirees by raising the retirement age …
The question of increasing revenues will not be asked. However it is possible: by fixing the same rate of levy to all, which is not the case for high incomes (6), by taxing capital income, by aligning the wages of women on those of men, by regularizing undocumented workers, by fighting against illegal work which would remove unfair competition … but we reduce the number of labor inspectors…
All measures that would increase the return of contributions. Especially by reducing the number of unemployed, the main plague of society: we prefer overtime work, without social security contributions, the lengthening of the working years, instead of favoring the distribution of work. Work less to work all? The choice is made: reduce expenses when the number of elderly people increases! It can only be by reducing the amount of pensions and the number of pensioners!
É. Philippe is committed: when converting points into a pension when an active person retires, a contributed point will always be worth an amount equal to or greater (but not less) than the basic amount entered in the reform (7). Even if inflation is galloping? How will Philippe be able to keep his word in a year, two years … if another government passes a law that contradicts its promise?
Those who retire at the pivotal age will receive a pension calculated on the normal value of the retirement point. For those who leave before, the value of the point will be reduced, for those who leave after, the point will be improved in the same proportions, X% per year… (7). Another encouragement to work more at the expense of those who cannot find a job.
It revolves a lot around the pivot!
After proclaiming, loud and clear, that it is going to unify the pension systems, the government must adjust the pivotal age according to certain criteria and … power relations.
The Minister of the Interior has already made derogatory promises to his troops who support him as the rope supports the hanged man… after the defection of 3 CRS companies during a Parisian demonstration … He announced the maintenance of the advantages of special police regime … the retirement age (52 for men in uniform and 57 for commissioners) and retirement calculated like everyone else, over the entire career but including all bonuses … resulting in pensions equivalent to those of today. But following a declaration by Macron ensuring that the military maintained their regime, the police demanded a future pension plan aligned with that of the gendarmes, which was more advantageous (8).
Like what, the fight pays especially that of the police, essential to an austerity government which handles austerity and stick.
The bonuses would also be included in the calculation of pensions for public sector employees. Compensation for those who receive it: 20% of the remuneration but varies greatly from one agent to another. Those who receive little or no bonus have a lot to lose, especially teachers (9). For them, it is the salary that would be highly upgraded. In addition, a bonus of 5% retirement points will be granted for each child from the first and another 2% for families of 3 or more children (10).
Bonuses could also be granted depending on the arduous nature of the work (11). Despite Macron’s class contempt for whom far too many French people have no sense of effort. And who does not love the word of arduousness because it gives the feeling that work is painful !!! However, courageous, Jean-François Cesarini, former socialist, deputy of LREM, and humorist (dark), proposes, for the teachers, a weighting linked to suicides by job, which proves the painfulness. Bad idea for J-M. Blanquer (minister of Education) because the average suicide in Education (5.85 per 100,000) is far below the national average, or 16 people per 100,000 in 2012 (12).
Will farmers get this hardship bonus? The 2014 ONS report reported their excess mortality by suicide, more than 20% above the national average, with approximately one suicide every 2 days (13). The increase in life expectancy is, for the government, an argument in favor of a later retirement. No for its modulation! Jean-François Cesarini could have used it as a criterion. It is, perhaps, unwelcome for a ex-socialist now LREM. At 35, the life expectancy of a worker is more than 6 years lower than that of a manager according to INSEE, average between 2009 and 2013 (14). Shouldn’t that be taken into account for retirement age?
Better still life expectancy in good health: number of years that a person can expect to live without suffering from incapacity in the gestures of daily life. In 2016, it was 64.1 years for women and 62.7 years for men according to the DREES (Direction de la Recherche, des études, de l’évaluation et des statistiques) (15). Life expectancy, without sensory and physical problems, for managers 35 years old is 34 years (35 +34 = 69), for workers, 24 years (35 +24 = 59). The majority of workers are in poor health before they even reach the pivotal age! Managers live longer, healthier, have higher and longer pensions (16). The pivotal age of financial equilibrium seems more telling for the government than the pivotal age of human equilibrium!There has been talk of the dangerousness of certain trades, and workplace accidents? In 2018, 651,103 accidents, 2.9% more than in 2017: including 551 fatal in 2018, 530 in 2017, not including farmers, self-employed workers, civil servants. No one will be surprised that their frequency is higher in construction and public works, 73.2 per 1,000 employees, then sailors, 64.8, than in banks, insurance and administrations, 9.9 per 1000.
The fatality rate for occupational accidents among seafarers is the highest, 0.461 per 1000 seafarers and 0.748 per 1000 fishermen. Risk 5 times higher, 8 times for fishermen, than in the construction industry with 0.093 per 1000 employees and 15.6 times higher than in all professional sectors combined with 0.0295 per 1000 (17). Of course, other professions are also at risk: pruners, roofers, the steel industry, garbage collectors … (18).
The Prime Minister was anxious to reassure the military, the police and hospital workers, by undertaking that the arduousness of their profession is indeed a criterion in the calculation of their pension (19). What can sailors, pruners, openers … and everyone else do to make themselves heard?
At the request of parliamentarians, deputies and senators, and after consultation with the Constitutional Council, the government had to put in place the collection of signatures in favor of a possible referendum on the privatization of Aéroports de Paris.
The procedure of the referendum of initiative shared (RIP), established in 2008, is activated for the first time, on April 10, 2019: 248 deputies and senators (the law demands at least a fifth of the parliamentarians) of the opposition, communists, rebellious, republican, socialist, submit a bill for the group Aéroports de Paris (ADP) is considered a public service. On May 9, the Constitutional Council judges that the required conditions are respected and fixes the number of necessary supports to 4,717,396. The Ministry of the Interior opens the online platform to collect support for the bill whose collection is open until March 12, 2020 (1)(Referendum.intérieur.gouv.fr).
With modalities such as the first candidates to support the petition, probably the most motivated, have often had to do it several times! How many citizens have given up or will give up during registration?
The signature can be done also in some town halls. In each canton, the most populated municipality has been mandated to register them. It is therefore necessary to sign the petition by internet, either to go to the town hall of the town or to another town hall of the canton !! Additional barriers to support.
This petition is intended to support the organization of a referendum for or against the privatization of ADP. Indeed, if the necessary number of signatories is reached, the National Assembly and the Senate will have six months to consider or not the proposal. If neither chamber examines the text, the President of the Republic must hold a referendum for or against privatization.
But if one or both Houses take the text, whatever they do, there will be no RIP. Given the government’s overwhelming majority in the National Assembly, it will be easy for it to put the proposal on the agenda and block the referendum and popular debate on privatization.
The government’s bad faith is focused on the democratic and political nature of the process. It wants to prevent any possibility of direct decision-making by the French people.
The RIP is a perfect demonstration of the democratic nature of the Republic: it must remain in its constitutional box. With even the intention proclaimed by the candidate Macron to facilitate its use (2). But fiercely attacked by his government and its supports from the announcement of a beginning of procedure: the Republic, at least the representative democracy, would be in danger if one applied a constitutional law put in place by the Parliament and whose procedure is triggered by parliamentarians !!!
If the RIP can not be applied without risk for the representative democracy, it is useless to speak about the RIC, referendum of citizen initiative wanted by the Gilets Jaunes ! The Giets Jaunes (Vests yellow) can not be deluded on the question: the RIC will not see the day …
The bad will of the government is explained. Some of its decisions, automatically endorsed by a National Assembly with orders, could be challenged by a RIP on the initiative of some parliamentarians.
What is much more surprising is the silence of the groups and parliamentarians who are behind this petition.
How many public meetings? How many collectives? How many leaflets? How many posters have been organized, published, broadcast? What made the interest of the 2005 referendum is not only the result, which was despised by parliamentarians. It is above all the popular mobilization which has been of political value and which has allowed the understanding of the Draft European Constitution, and its rejection by very many citizens.
Those who govern have learned the lesson. This profound movement of concrete democracy must not happen again. Politicians and the media have understood that it is easier to amuse voters with policy-related issues like doping with sportsmen or with rivalry between candidates as they do for a sporting event. If the candidate, once elected, does exactly the opposite of what he announced, there is no possible recourse for the fooled citizen.
It is not the same for a text that everyone can read, explain, dissect, publicly or in small groups. And refuse.
French democracy, like many others, is the power given to the oligarchs, the competents. Who know what is good for all. In their eyes, the people are competent to elect, freely, one of their interchangeable candidates. It is no longer able to read, discuss, understand a text and determine essentially according to this text. To vote after a real debate. Emmanuel Macron does not hide his game. He has shown what he means by A Great National Debate.
The petition launched, the number of signatures obtained can have a considerable impact. It would be a serious political mistake to neglect to participate. It can change the ratio of political forces. If the signatures are few, it will support Emmanuel Macron in the idea that he has carte blanche to continue his austere policy. Not only the privatization of ADP or any other nuclear company to hydroelectric dams but its liberal policy of destroying the state and social laws. As he already did for the labor code. A successful petition will not necessarily stop the privatization of ADP. The procedure can be blocked at the level of the National Assembly. But a very large number of signatures, despite the governmental obstacles, will change the balance of power. Already, the battle of the Gilets Jaunes, even if they have not obtained satisfaction on everything – just think of the ISF (wealth tax) or the APL – requires Emmanuel Macron to be less brave and hold his whip …
The petition can show him that he can not always override the will of the people, that he simply has the choice to submit his policy to the judgment of the people that can be done by referendum or by …. new yellow, red, green or rainbow vests …
From this perspective, it is extremely desirable that collectives set themselves up to multiply signatures. The debate is important. It is not about the privatization of ADP alone or …
But on the possibility for citizens to take control of some of the power and to facilitate the realization that we can not leave in place a person who only defends the interests of some! Do not sign the petition, it is not only to take a stand for the privatization of ADP, it is to vote against the practice of the RIP, it is to leave the hands free to Macron.
The result would be terrible for Macron if millions of citizens claimed a real debate. The defeat would be terrible if the 4 million signatures were not obtained regardless of the maneuvers undertaken to limit the mobilization.
If the number of necessary signatures is not obtained, it means a wide avenue open to Emmanuel Macron on privatizations and not only …
The RIP will be able to rest in peace in the texts. The citizens will have been voted out. How will they react? What color will the next vests be?
1 – The citizen who wants to support the petition must, with his identity and elector cards , complete a questionnaire on his civil status. It should mention the information as it is written on his cards including all the first names. The collection officially ends on March 12, 2020 at midnight. For now, the pace of collection of signatures is largely insufficient to obtain the number needed for success. See adprip.fr website
2 – On April 25, President Macron says he wants to « go further » on the RIP « by simplifying the rules, allowing the initiative can come from citizens, a million citizens who would sign a petition and that it can prosper in draft law and if it was not examined by the assemblies, go to the referendum « (L’Express 16/05/19).
A gathering in solidarity with democratic Brazil took place today in La Villette.
A friend met, on this occasion, told me this half-joke: « In the Brazilian presidential election, some voted for a real fascist candidate thinking he was bogus, so as to avoid the election of acandidate they took for a true communist when he was only a phony communist. «
After each event, the discussions revolve around the number of participants. With various estimates, inconsistent, all suspected, more or less correctly, of lies. From there, the comments of journalists, trade unionists, politicians are more of an exercise to satisfy the constituents than to open perspectives according to reality.
In meetings or small events where it is possible to count the participants, it is easy to see that the organizers declare numbers higher than reality, most often double, so as not to despair … For events concerning a few tens or a few hundred participants away from the masses and Billancourt … The truth is revolutionary but … within certain limits.
The numbers have 2 functions. The first: to satisfy the participants, to show that the decision was the right one, that we win, that we won …
The second: to check, to establish a more favorable balance of power.
The government and, we must hope, the unions and the politicians, make their analysis not according to the figures proclaimed but figures closer to reality.
For those who want to make comments from the encrypted reality, it should not be very complicated. In particular to compare the degree of mobilization. As far as Paris is concerned, the figures of the Préfecture de police and those of the organizers, which sometimes differed from 1 to 4 or 5, were available to satisfy, to encourage the militants … For some time, the observers have counted made by a private company for a group of newspapers from right and left …
Of course, these results are not absolutely reliable. And from this point of view, the company Occurrence announces, for September 12, 2017, 29,329 demonstrators, to unity, against the reform of the Labor Code in Paris, falls into absolute ridicule. But admitting an error of 10% in the counts of the Préfecture de Police and Occurrence, the results of these two counts are not very far and in any case closer than that of the organizers: 60 000. Immediately, the independence and direction of the sponsoring newspapers and the agency were challenged. And the method used. There had never been so many questions about the police counting methods and of course even less about those of the organizers …
The reflection and the meaning of the demonstrations is partly masked by these comments on how accounts avoid talking about why events and their relative importance. This is in addition to the scrambling due to the action of the Black Blocs which are listed more material effects and how they act than the why ….
Is it so necessary to know the exact number of participants? To have a solid basis of reflection, is it not enough to take the series of figures produced by the same sources (Table 1) ? It’s easy to do for those of the Prefecture of Police and Occurrence. More difficult for the numbers proposed by the organizers especially if they are different according to the demonstrations because their imaginative capacity is different. Sometimes in competition.
Table 1: Participation in the various events of the spring of 2018 according to different sources of counting.
55 000 CGT
160 000 FI
50 000 FO
30 000 CGT
80 000 CGT
For the events of this spring, according to the figures of the Prefecture, it was the March 22nd demonstration which had the most important participation, followed by that of May 5th (La Fête à Macron), which seems to confirm the enumeration of Occurrence. And for both, Préfecture and Occurrence, May 5th has gathered more people than the 26th … It remains to explain these post-modern mathematics invented by the left where 500 + 500 = 400!
François Ruffin and Dominique Lordon, followed especially by LaFrance insoumise, gather more people on May 5 than the 65 organizations, including La France insoumise, grouped behind ATTAC and the Copernic Foundation!
Is it necessary to attribute the success of La Fête à Macron, to François Ruffin’s personal factor associating youth, new methods, recent appearance in the political world? At the strong mobilization of La France insoumise… ?
Or the least mobilization of La marée populaire pour l’égalité, la justice sociale et la soidarité (the popular tide for equality, social justice and solidarity) of May 26, to a more traditional form, to a unitary call with the ulterior motives of each, the conditions of this unity, together but each at a different place… weariness in the face of repeated demonstrations, the strikes that continue without apparent decline of the government and the president?
Be that as it may, the day of 26 was the day of an important national demonstration. By the number of participants in Paris, even if we would have liked it to be higher … But even if what happens in Paris always has a more important echo, the 26th, La Marée was also organized in 190 cities in France then that May 5 was only in Paris.
In a relative union of associations, unions (even if not all of them …) and political parties of the left, a relative union because these organizations were in the parade but not together.
Classically, in Paris, social demonstrations, policies against nationalization, attacks on social security …, are largely white, neighborhood populations do not participate or little. A touch of color is often brought by the presence of groups of undocumented (Les sans-papiers) or members of the CGT or Droit au logement (Right to Housing).
The proportions are reversed when it comes to struggles against facies checks, discrimination, police slippage. Or to claim a memorial for the victims of slavery …..
This time, the Adama committee had called to participate and take the lead of the procession. Popular neighborhoods have not landed en masse but it’s a start.
Everyone knows now that the President of the Republic has chosen his side, that he attacks the popular masses on all fronts at the same time. That it is the same president who accentuates the desertification of the countryside (removal of hospital services, post offices …), persecutes asylum seekers, like previous governments, abandons neighborhoods with the setting in a drawer of the report Borloo that he had asked for, dismantled the labor code, reduced the number of civil servants, subsidized jobs and social budgets, attacking whistle-blowers, abolishing the PLA, privatizing and reducing taxes for the benefit of the richest …
May 26th was the first step, it is hoped that social, labor and political organizations are aware of the expectation of all categories of people. So that La Marée populaire pour l’égalité, la justice sociale et la solidarité (The People’s Tide for Equality, Social Justice and Solidarity) rises, from all sides, from all social categories, at the same time.
The Fête à Macron, a festive event launched by François Ruffin and Frédéric Loridon, was a real popular success. It is enough to note that the demonstration began on the Place de l’Opera (Paris) at 12:30 and ended Place de la Bastille … well, much later.How many people will have participated in the 5 or 6 hours of the event?And how to count them?
This is to say how difficult it is to make a reliable count by putting yourself on one or two points of the course when many of the participants came at the beginning only to picnic on Place de l’Opera, when others took the procession on the march or went directly to its terminus …
When we love, we do not count and it is useless to want to decide between the appreciations of the ones and of the others which go from more than 39 000 participants to 160 000!To say the importance of the event, just remember that the Prefecture of Police found more participants on May 5th than May 1st.
It must also be added that the authorities had announced incidents for the May 1st demonstration and that this coud cool some potential participants.
If the aggressive expression of Fête à Macron was able to shock some, what struck on the Place de l’Opéra, cleared of all car traffic, it was the festive calm … the picnic hasinvaded the steps of the Palais Garnier, the sidewalks and even the asphalt and the sellers of sandwiches, drinks, books in solidarity, the associative stands and music …
Of course, behind the quiet calm of a happy crowd to be there with the nice weather back, to say its rejection of right-wing and… right-wing politics, the political battles continue.It was an event launched by François Ruffin and La France insoumise was everywhere but we could also note the presence, perhaps small in number but how symbolic of trade union formations and leftist politics.
This allows to hope for a manifestation, even more important, truly unitary, already announced for May 26.
Once again, unity is not workers’ day. Neither at the union level nor at the political level. And the active Black Block participation occupies the media. Is there a link between the two phenomena?
The Unitarians are numerous, not only on May First Day.
The unity has long been between the governments of the European Union to impose the same austerity policy on all peoples. Emmanuel Macron set out on March to accelerate this movement of questioning, frontal, of all social benefits for the benefit of the rich and especially the richest as his predecessor says.
Result of austerity for all in the countries of the Union: rise of the extreme right which also builds its European unity around the French far right, the first of May in Nice. With unity attempt with extreme right from immigration issues.
Meanwhile, the Unions can not organize a unitary parade because of a deep division between those who hope for a softening of this or that point of Macronian counter-reforms and those who wish defeat them, overall.
Leftist parties are not left behind.
On April 30, on the Place de la Republique in Paris, 9 organizations of the left, and they were not all there, proclaimed in front of a few hundred participants, in the rain it is true, more or less incantatory slogans : necessary unity, of course, convergence of struggles, general strike … And called to participate beyond the parade of May 1, with more or less enthusiasm, to the many events to come: May 3, for theeducation, May 5, Feast in Macron, May 22, demonstration and strike of the civil service …
Faced with the power of the European Union, the failure of multiple strikes and demonstrations in the face of the weak Francois Hollande, the affirmed determination of Emmanuel Macron, the lack of trade union and political perspective, the wide dissatisfaction that affects all layers popular social networks can not fully express themselves.
The social hardening is reflected, at the level of the organizations, by a change of leader to F.O. Among the protesters, by the demand for a general strike, a slogan which, for the moment, is not taken up again, neither by the trade unions, nor by the mass of the workers
At the political level, if the multiple parties verbally support the movement, it did not translate during the parade of May Day in Paris, by a massive presence of militants.Some say it was different in the regions.
On the Place de la Bastille, before the parade, several parties were present.On the course, some had stands.In the parade, only persisted, the PCF and its national secretary.The others had to withdraw before they could scroll.As for the international presence, it consisted mainly of Iranians, South Americans, Tamils, Turks, the Portuguese Communist Party …
For some, mostly young people, it means changing the method.The participation of the Black Blocks is the expression of this impatience.Without it being a majority, nor that it is assured of greater efficiency.But, formally directed against the government and even more against the system, it calls into question the inefficiency of all trade union and political organizations.
This involvement of the Black Blocs was known and announced by the government, which seems to have underestimated its importance. Rumor and social networks announced international participation.
Black blocks and police knew and prepared accordingly. A banner showed: this time we are organized. The police to neutralize the Black Blocks had prepared the technique of the trap, police practice of control(https://lundi.am/Kettling).
The two seem to see relatively worked because the Black blocs, about 1200 people, well organized, managed to tackle 29 shops and 10 cars, to burn 2 shops and 6 cars, according to the Paris police headquarters.
For its part the police trap allowed the arrest of 276 protesters of which 109 were placed in custody. With 4 minor injuries (one CRS and three protesters).
Since Tuesday, the comments are going well but the spectacular side of the action, shown in chain on television and on the networks, insist much less on the motives of the ones and the others, the Black blocs which, in some declarations or bygraffiti, claim to want a radical change in society and traditional protesters who oppose the widespread attack of public services and social benefits.
The violence of the Black Blocs is mostly condemned in the declarations but like all the social violence, the moral condemnation, the police repression are not a satisfactory treatment.
First, moral condemnation and police repression have not yet proved their effectiveness. Would they do that they would only make disappear one of the signs of the deep social crisis.
In their questionable way, the Black Blocks testify to the level of exacerbation that social discontent can have in some of the youth. This dissatisfaction is also reflected, in the population as a whole, by the vote for the extreme right or the abstention which reach very high levels in France and in most democratic countries.
No one can say if, where and when the alarm will take place.
Here are some photos of the May Day parade in Paris.
On December 2, 2017, at the end of the year purchases, activists ATTAC (Association for the taxation of financial transactions and for citizen action) occupied, peacefully and uncovered, for 3 hours, the store Apple, Place de l’Opera in Paris. In response, Apple is filing a lawsuit for imminent risk for Apple, its employees and customers during these operations, in court the Paris TGI.
Apple wants to prohibit ATTAC entry into its stores under penalty of 150 000 per offense.
Monday, February 12, at the trial filed by Apple, ATTAC – Multinationals will not silence us – called its supporters at a rally in front of the Palais de Justice where the trial was held: a peaceful and festive gathering, as usual, with ATTAC. On the theme, The Empire counter Attac.
Aurélie Trouvé for ATTAC
Some information provided in the documentation distributed on this occasion in particular in 20 Mille luttes (1).
On a $ 649 iPhone7, the margin is $ 400, or $ 249 for manufacturing.
Workers in China work on average 60 hours a week…
Moreover, 70% of profits are made internationally by paying only 2.3% of taxes.
Thanks to its tax perfection, between 2003 and 2014, Apple has benefited from a near zero taxation … 0.005% !!!
The European Commission has fined Apple $ 13 billion in August 2016: Apple refuses to pay.
Apple has been sentenced to 2 fines in France following two tax audits: $ 12 and $ 400 million: Apple has $ 230 billion in tax havens.
Rubric jobs offer of »20 mille luttes »: Following many suicides in its Chinese factories, Apple hires European entrepreneurs, victims of austerity.
Discover our next products in preview by coming to assemble them yourself in our factories Foxconn.
Travel in container ship. Waves in apples.
If Apple is an expert in tax matters, it is not the only company that plays tax optimization ie tax evasion, legal fraud …
According to an inquiry committee of the European Parliament, the European Union would lose each year 1000 billion euros in tax and social revenues (here they are social fraudsters): the equivalent of health expenditure of the 28 countries of the EU, because of companies for two-thirds and individuals for a third. In France, it is 60 to 80 billion euros. ATTAC conducts citizen actions to demand multinationals (Apple, BNP Paribas, Ikea, Engie, MacDonald’s, Societe Generale, Starbucks, Total or Zara) make money diverted and pay their fair share of taxes in the countries where they operate.
These companies are, for the moment, only slightly worried.
It is the whistleblowers who find themselves in court!
But if slight progress has been made, it is thanks to them and to the work of some journalists, to citizen actions (chair mowers, voleurs de chaises de la BNP …).
Much remains to be done
Multiple organizations have given their support, some representatives have spoken after Aurélie Trouvé: Eric Coquerel (LFI), Sophie Binet (CGT), Yannick Jadot (EELV), Eric Beynel (Solidarity), the MNCP, Olivier Besancenot (NPA) , Isabelle de Almeida (PCF), Miguel Urban (Podemos, Spain), Emmanuel Poilane (Crid), Veronique Ponvert (FSU) …
Benoît Hamon who could not come and other personalities or movements had sent a message.
Some images of speakers
SONG OF THE EMPIRE
We at Apple to pay no taxes
we have found brilliant methods
relocation of profits in paradise ...
It's profitable, it's profitable.
We do not care about working conditions
so imagine ... then tax justice
We at Apple we bypass the laws
we pay lawyers handsomely for that
social and environmental disruption this is
not moral ... but it's very profitable very
SONG OF THE ALLIANCE
always you will fighteeeeeeeeeer
never you will blend
SLOGANIT'S NOT THE ASSO ATTAC THAT IT
MUST JUDGE, BUT IT IS APPLE AND
ALL THESE BILLION ESCAPED