Strikes, demonstrations, blockades : a dark week in France

The arm wrestling between the French people opposed to the pension reform and the executive, stubborn despite 5 days of strong mobilization, will harden from March 7, 2023. Who will bend? And what is behind this damned reform ?

This is finally the only question of the day. How long will Emmanuel Macron and his government hold out against the unions, united as never before, and supported by a public opinion largely opposed to the pension reform project? We hope to have the answer soon enough, because the anger of the French is at its peak. Our compatriots can no longer stand the intransigence of the government and the casualness of certain ministers. We said it and we repeat it: all this could end very badly. For the executive, obviously.

Misery settles in little by little

It is true that the pension reform project, which is badly designed and unfair to certain categories of employees, is not the only object of the wrath of the French. There is everything else. And the rest is heavy.
First of all, there is the soaring cost of living, which is bleeding the most vulnerable households. More and more of them are unable to pay the usual family expenses: rent, heating, fuel, food. To the point that the number of meals distributed by the Restos du Cœur has jumped by 26% this year in Meurthe-et-Moselle and probably just as much elsewhere. It’s a misery that is quietly settling in our country without disturbing the men and women who lead us.
Then there are the companies, small, medium or large, which can no longer meet their expenses because of the prohibitive prices of energy: gas, electricity, oil… There is no counting the number of bakeries which, in the cities and the countryside, are definitively closing; there is no counting the number of stores which are deserting the city centers; there is no counting the number of small and medium-sized companies which are stopping their activities and laying off workers.
Whose fault is this? To the Russian-Ukrainian war, of course. But who is applying stupid and counter-productive sanctions against Russia? Who wanted to bring the Russian economy to its knees?

A dose of capitalization

It is in this particularly degraded economic and social climate that the head of state and his henchmen have decided to bring up the age-old pension reform. There were more urgent matters to deal with: galloping inflation, of course, the health care system, alarming insecurity, drugs, uncontrolled immigration, etc.
So why touch pensions now? Part of the answer, which we have suspected all along, was provided this Sunday, March 5, by the Senate. A senator from Meurthe-et-Moselle, Jean-François Husson, tabled an amendment in favor of a reflection on the addition of a dose of capitalization in the pension distribution system. The amendment was adopted by 163 votes to 126. And here come the investment funds, as in the United States, where rich employees could prepare a comfortable retirement (thanks to the performance of the stock market) while poor employees would starve. Just like in the United States.
Is this what we want in France? The French will answer loudly this week.