Sunday, May 6, 2007

Après nous le déluge

Mohamed Mechmache, President of AC Le Feu — an association created following the November 2005 riots, has ominously warned that "France did not understand the message sent during the riots in October and November of 2005."
…which is, namely, to keep your head down and your mouth shut while the rioters have their way with France. After Nicolas Sarkozy, famous for calling the rioting class "rabble," was elected as President of France earlier today, the message will just have to be repeated

… and repeated, and repeated, and repeated, and repeated, and repeated, and repeated, and repeated, and repeated … (Follow ¡No Pasarán! for coverage.)

Oddly enough, Nicolas Sarkozy is commonly branded as "right wing" in the press even over here, where it has been apparently picked up without any scrutiny from their European confrères, although he is entirely ideologically compatible with the systematic institutionalization of entitlements that characterizes democratic socialism in France. What primarily distinguishes Sarkozy, a Michael Ignatieff sort of fellow if we were to place him in Canada, is a disdain — in rhetoric at least — for the consequences of such a system, inevitable as they are. It is this that has struck a chord with French voters, who along with many Europeans are beginning to evince a desire to reconcile the possession and the eating of the cake. Good luck with that. I suspect the rioters will have only to fear for their "sport," but little for their entitlements. Insofar as we can entertain hopes, however, I'll go with Theodore Dalyrmple: 'I want Sarkozy to be right'