So, the gilets jaunes. Here is a sullen little flock of them, all that were left after a fine day of rioting. Last week they could claim naivete regarding their more violent members. This week, no excuse. They came out anyway and took no precautions against their more violent members. I make little distinction between the guy who threw the rock and the guy who stopped the cops from getting to him.
From what I can tell, French journalists are on the lazy side, reporting only what they can show in today’s images and relegating analysis to a man-on-the-street pop quiz. So I can’t pull together a reliable history of how we got here.
A cynical friend tells me that the Socialists saw that they were going to be voted out and passed a time bomb of legislation, raising taxes yet again, after doing zip to rein in government spending for all those years when they ran the show. This time they arranged for the increase to take place after they were going to be gone. If this is true, Hollande is surely sitting with his little Julie on a sofa somewhere and they are laughing their Machiavellian heads off.
As you can see, the streets are leaning left. Well, except for when they are leaning right. I gather there is not much political consensus under those vests.
That’s an ATM. Used to be an ATM.
I’m trying to figure out how it helps the French people to destroy their cars and keep them from getting to where they need to go. Their gas expenses, their insurance, their, at this point mine, too, taxes will only increase. How else will we pay to clean up this mess?
The SO’s office is very near the Arc de Triomphe. We decided we’d better go see whether it was safe for his staff to come to work in the morning. Yeah, we think it will be, but you can see what we found in the neighbourhood.
All the tourists were out with us, snapping away. These photos are going all over the world. How does that help French tourism? I have one reservation for this summer. I’m afraid it’s going to be one and done. Julien tells me tourism in our area was down last summer. This year could make last year look pretty good.
Of course Christmas shopping will be done online this year. Why go out if you can’t get anywhere? One bad Christmas season can spell the end for a lot of small merchants. Of course, once folks get used to shopping online, it’s game over.
Dunno, folks. I m flabbergasted. I can understand the reasons for dissatisfaction, but I don’t see how this form of protest will do anything but make things worse. And the SO? Bah, he says, no problem. It was so much worse in ’68 and we got through that. I hope his optimism is justified.