Saturday, June 25, 2016

Brexit: The Nation is Back! Is France next?

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Brexit: The Nation is Back!

by Yves Mamou  •  June 25, 2016 at 5:00 am

  • In France, before the British vote, the weekly JDD conducted an online poll with one question: Do you want France out of the EU? 88% of people answered "YES!"

  • In none of the countries the surveyed was there much support for transferring power to Brussels.

  • To calm a possible revolt of millions of poor and unemployed people, countries such as France have maintained a high level of social welfare spending, by borrowing money on international debt markets to pay unemployment insurance benefits, as well as pensions for retired people. Today, France's national debt is 96.1% of GDP. In 2008, it was 68%.

  • In the past few years, these poor and old people have seen a drastic change in their environment: the butcher has become halal, the café does not sell alcohol anymore, and most women in the streets are wearing veils. Even the McDonald's in France have become halal.

  • What is reassuring is that the "Leave" people waited for a legal way to express their protest. They did not take guns or knives to kill Jews or Muslims: they voted. They waited an opportunity to express their feelings.

Marine Le Pen, leader of the Front National, celebrates the Brexit vote under a sign reading, "And Now: France!", June 24, 2016.

"How quickly the unthinkable became the irreversible" writes The Economist. They are talking about Brexit, of course.

The question of today is: Who could have imagined that British people were so tired of being members of The Club? The question of tomorrow is: What country will be next?

In France, before the British vote, the weekly JDD conducted an online poll with one question: Do you want France out of the EU? 88% of people answered "YES!" This is not a scientific result, but it is nevertheless an indication. A recent -- and more scientific -- survey for Pew Research found that in France, a founding member of "Europe," only 38% of people still hold a favorable view of the EU, six points lower than in Britain. In none of the countries surveyed was there much support for transferring power to Brussels.

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