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

"Victor Hugo thanks all the donors for their generosity in pledging funds to save Notre-Dame de Paris and would suggest they do the same for Les Misérables." This quip from writer Ollivier Pourriol has inspired many reactions and postings from the gilets jaunes movement who are continuing their protests.

They highlight the contrast between big businesses and wealthy French oligarchs ready to commit some "crazy dough" (Macron's favorite expression when talking of social transfers) for the cathedral reconstruction while forgetting the bulk of the people living close to the poverty line.

The 60% tax break for the money pledged is largely criticized: everybody understands the ordinary tax payers (those without offshore accounts) will have to foot the bill of the 1% "generosity". The backlash is so intense that the Pinault family, one of the wealthiest in France, announced they were giving up the tax incentive.

by Bernard on Wed Apr 17th, 2019 at 08:12:37 PM EST

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