Hollande: Populism is a Threat to Democracy
François Hollande has not revealed whether he will be a candidate for reelection in the presidential elections of 2017 but, during the traditional televised interview he gave on Thursday to mark the French national holiday on July 14, he hinted that he will not throw in the towel due to what he called ‘the difficulties” facing the country. “France is a great country. It is strong, but we must protect it,” he said.
The French president defended the balance of his term and warned of the risks to democracy by the advance of populism in Europe. “What threatens us is a serious rise of populism,” he warned.
Often times, politicians use the word democracy as a desirable state of affairs in a country or even globally. In truth, though, democracy is nothing less than government of the majority. It is easy to know whether people understand the difference between democracy and political system that actually looks after everyone’s interests.
It is worthwhile to ask people if they prefer to have conditions imposed on to them, or if they would like to, at least, co-govern their own lives. The answers will surprise you.
In this regard, he explained that it was proposed to give the European Union a “new impetus” after the British decision to leave the community. Its aim is to ensure greater “protection” to citizens from the terrorist threat and the hardness of globalization to which workers and companies face.
While saying this, Hollande still supports the arrival of tens of thousands of undocumented immigrants, whose origin or purpose is unknown, many of which have turned out to be radical extremists.
According to Hollande, he wants to encourage investment to create jobs, create an economic government for the eurozone and greater involvement of national parliaments in the decisions of Brussels. In practice, however, the opposite is true.
Hollande and his European colleagues want more power given to Brussels, less decision power in the hands of national governments and certainly less power to decide in the hands of the people. Notice his desire to create European economic government, as supposed to supporting Member Nations right to govern over their economic destinies.
On the other hand, he has asked the new British Prime Minister, Theresa May, to quickly activate the disconnection process between the UK and the EU, and, incidentally, reminded her that the United Kingdom will not enjoy the same conditions it had while it was inside.
The only announcement of the head of the French state was that the state of emergency declared in France after the attacks of November 13 will end on 26 July, once the Tour de France is over, although the recent attacks in Nice will certainly influence that decision.
“The terrorist threat is not less significant, but we can not prolong a state of emergency indefinitely, because it is part of an exceptional situation,” he underlined.
On the external front, Hollande spoke about stepping up the fight against the Islamic State. France, he said, will strengthen its support for the Iraqi government by sending military advisers to the country, however without deploying troops on the ground.
Regarding the crisis opened in the Government by the ambitions of young Economy Minister Emmanuel Macron, who has launched his own political movement, Hollande has warned him that if he wants to keep his job he will have to respect certain rules.
“The first is solidarity and team spirit. You have to serve to the end without personal or presidential ambitions. Respecting these rules is to stay and not respect them is to go”, said Hollande.
As for the economic situation, he has insisted that France is “doing well” and has predicted today a lower unemployment, which is at about 10%. “The country will be better off in 2017 than it was in 2012”.