Welcome to European Tribune. It's gone a bit quiet around here these days, but it's still going.

the Mitterand model is not a social-democratic model nor even a socialist one. It's a "I keep the power to myself-model at any price". Thereof the contempt.

Your (not unreasonable) contempt for the man makes you ignore the economic policies that were pursued.

On the pensions front - of course there is a demographic evolution. Of course the system will need to adapt to it. All I am saying is that it can be done via fine tuning and tinkering over the years, as we've done over the past 40 years to adapt to new population distributions and needs. There will be a combination of slightly higher contributions by workers, slightly longer years of work, and slightly lower pensions, comapred to what have been, but as productivity keeps on increasing, we'll be able to oafford the system and not leave anybody behind.

One thing - on the public pensions thing. I'll let you argue this with my father, who has a simple argument. As a professor, he has had for his whole life a lower salary than his qualifications could have gotten him in the private sector. In return, he got a safe job and a safe pension. You may make a different choice, but it was a deal, a full package, and it is quite unfait to change one part of the package after the fact - and after one party to the deal has already given all it was supposed to.

As to employment/unemployment, the main difference between France and the Nordic countris is the employment rate of the seniors - much higher in Scandinavia. Unemployment has gone to pretty high leves in Finland (above 15%), Denmark (10%) and even Sweden (8%) as well.

You mention Ericsson and Nokia. But the reverse point is that having just one such company is enough to distort all statistics relative to the very small countries that host such a large company. Alcatel or Airbus is not enough, on its own, to have an impact on French macro-economic statistics. Ericsson and Nokia are.

In the long run, we're all dead. John Maynard Keynes

by Jerome a Paris (etg@eurotrib.com) on Tue Feb 13th, 2007 at 05:06:49 AM EST
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