Welcome to European Tribune. It's gone a bit quiet around here these days, but it's still going.
Yes and no.

Andreani (and VGE) is spot on. There is a lot to criticize in today's France but the constant France bashing within and abroad has reached the point of inanity. Most of the foreign "models" promoted by the bashers have little to contribute when they are not plainly false (holding the UK or the US as models for immigration is downright hilarious).

Still, Andreani misses an important part of the picture. There's a good reason why it's so easy to sell the "falling France" BS. The other side has lost a lot of its credibility. The disconnect is so huge between the preservationist discourse and the reality on the ground.

For instance, the infamous "défense des acquis sociaux", a so-called corner stone of the French model, means nothing to the millions of French workers stuck between interim work and temp contracts. Labor relations plain suck in France, with no hope of serious reform, the field being trusted by ultraliberal ideologues who would not survive an honest day of work and discredited, laughably weak labor unions, overrun on their left by the usual gaggle of coordinations and other forms of ultra-left wing entrism.

France has yet to kill many ghosts.
by Francois in Paris on Thu Dec 29th, 2005 at 10:44:37 AM EST

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