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They apply more to candidates whose main selling points are insane charisma and charm, rather than a solid record. Incumbents have the easiest time being believed, as long as what they say is a continuation of what they did in office. When Sarkozy promises to get tough on crime or to gut immigrants' rights, I can compare what he says to what he did during the riots. When Royal promises to keep the 35-hour week a few months after she promised to repeal it, I reserve the right to doubt her credibility.
by Alon (alon_levy1@yahoo.com) on Tue Feb 13th, 2007 at 08:39:09 AM EST
[ Parent ]
I don't think it's even worth arguing about your "insane charisma" language, but you're mistaken in saying Royal "promised to repeal" the 35-hour week.
by afew (afew(a in a circle)eurotrib_dot_com) on Tue Feb 13th, 2007 at 09:02:21 AM EST
[ Parent ]
I got the 35-hour week thing from Wikipedia, back when she won the primary.
by Alon (alon_levy1@yahoo.com) on Tue Feb 13th, 2007 at 10:01:18 AM EST
[ Parent ]
She criticzed the 35-hour, indeed, but from the left, i.e. saying that it was too favorable to companies and not to workers (which is actually true in some industrial sectors, as work timetables became ste on a yearly basis, with much more flexible - i.e. less stable and less predictable - hours)

In the long run, we're all dead. John Maynard Keynes
by Jerome a Paris (etg@eurotrib.com) on Tue Feb 13th, 2007 at 10:23:37 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Wikipedia's Ségolène Royal page now says this:

She also criticized some side effects of the 35-hour working week that Lionel Jospin wrote into law when he was Prime Minister

[me not wikipedia]: Those side-effects were mainly, she said, that women in some jobs had been forced to work hours that were difficult for them in view of family commitments.

(It's not often noted that the 35-hour laws included negotiations between labour and management on flexibilisation of working hours within the week and within the year - to the considerable benefit of businesses).

by afew (afew(a in a circle)eurotrib_dot_com) on Tue Feb 13th, 2007 at 11:35:53 AM EST
[ Parent ]
You can correct the wikipedia article. Among other things, the quotation you give "needs a citation".

"It's the statue, man, The Statue."
by Migeru (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Tue Feb 13th, 2007 at 11:45:48 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Just in case, "insane" in this context doesn't mean lack of sanity, but just means very large. I don't think many Americans would object to the phrase "Clinton had insane charisma and charm", and they would not interpret it as implying that Clinton is insane.

"It's the statue, man, The Statue."
by Migeru (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Tue Feb 13th, 2007 at 10:03:43 AM EST
[ Parent ]
I know ;)

I'm just a bit tired of hearing this "Royal is charisma, charm, a pretty face, and then nothing behind the mask" that is after all the right's main narrative thrust in this election.

I don't think Clinton was just a pretty face either...

by afew (afew(a in a circle)eurotrib_dot_com) on Tue Feb 13th, 2007 at 11:44:36 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Well, people can be charismatic and still have serious content. I'd analogize Royal to an American or British politician here, but Clinton and Blair are the opposite of what I'm trying to demonstrate. Unlike them, Royal seems to have some political principles. Whether Obama is a Blairite more than a Royalite remains to be seen.
by Alon (alon_levy1@yahoo.com) on Thu Feb 15th, 2007 at 07:28:12 PM EST
[ Parent ]
You mention "insane" and you leave out a certain unmentionable and the last 6 years in the US???  

What are you really getting at?

Our knowledge has surpassed our wisdom. -Charu Saxena.

by metavision on Tue Feb 13th, 2007 at 01:15:30 PM EST
[ Parent ]

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