France: Digging Itself Into a Spend Management Grave

Before anyone accuses me of being anti-French, let me first say that I'm a big fan of traditional French culture (especially the food and wine bit). I've even been known to jump on a plane to Paris for a long weekend after nailing a reservation at a three star Michelin restaurant. But when it comes to economic and Spend Management policy, the government of France appears destined to hold back the formerly great, influential nation yet again with its far left policies. The latest news is that the socialist party appears to be storming in with an even more left wing platform than its predecessors. It appears as if Segolene Royal, a former environment minister and socialist party member, will likely become the county's next president. According to the newswire, "The party manifesto calls for expanding use of the much-maligned workweek law, re-nationalizing the power company Electricite de France, and punishing companies that move jobs abroad."

The French socialist party manifesto sounds like a recipe for economic disaster to me. If Madame Royal does take the elected throne, I reckon that France's biggest contributor to non-government GDP will soon come from tourists who come to fill their bellies (excepting the transfer and sale of nuclear and military technology to rogue states). But perhaps there will be a lesson in here for other Western countries about the dangers of economic protectionism. It's unfortunate, however, that a country with the great history and culture of France will have to be the one to plunge into the economic dark ages in the process of showing the rest of the world the damages such protectionist policies can bring.

Jason Busch

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