And so it starts. France’s president-elect, Françoise Hollande, an avowed socialist, said on Friday, May 11, 2012, that Nicolas Sarkozy, outgoing president of France, underestimated France’s budget problems and wants a new audit of the books. Sound familiar? Is the “blame game” starting again?
Hollande said that the audit wouldn’t alter his plans to fulfill campaign pledges, including higher taxes on the rich, thousands of new teaching jobs, and freezes on some government spending. Hollande is predicting 1.7% growth in 2013, but the European Commission (EC) predicts 1.3% growth in 2013. Further, Hollande predicts a 3% deficit, but the EC forecasts 4.2% for 2013. Hollande campaigned on promises to end a push for austerity, saying France and other European countries need government stimuli to grow. Where have we heard that before?
So, with Hollande’s socialism bent and statements, let’s see how HE lives. Peter Allen, writing for the UK Daily Mail, reveals that Hollande owns a home and two apartments in the south of France, near the Riviera resort of Cannes, valued at almost €1.245 million. Hollande, who ‘dislikes the rich,’ is himself quite rich, with a self-declared worth of at least €1.2 million. He has bank accounts in three French banks, two with Societe Generale, and one with the Postal Bank. He rents a Paris apartment that he shares with his lover Valerie Trierweiler, a journalist.
Hollande likes to refer to himself as “Mr. Normal.”
Hollande says he will cut his pay by 30% after he is sworn in as President, but he will still receive €156,000 per year, plus fabulous expenses and other perks.
In France, Hollande proposes:
- to establish a top tax rate of 75%
- an increase in France’s controversial wealth tax, a proposal that has already seen wealthy people threatening to leave the country but will not effect Hollande as his wealth falls just below the threshold that would make him liable to pay wealth tax
- to pour public money into France’s public service, creating thousands of new jobs (where have we heard that before?)
- to threatened to block the eurozone’s new financial treaty unless Germany agrees to renegotiate its stringent austerity measures – he wants the treaty to focus more on economic growth
French Socialist Party spokesman Benoit Hamon said that the ‘politics of austerity’ was failing to improve the continent’s financial crisis. Benoit said that Hollande was determined to win a ‘trial of strength’ over the new fiscal pact, which aims to impose budgetary discipline on the 25 European Union countries who have signed up.
As British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher once said, “The problem with socialism is that eventually you run out of other people’s money [to spend].”
Here we go again. I guess socialists never learn.
BTW, as of May 11, 2012, one US dollar ($) was worth 0.772903 Euro (€).
But that’s just my opinion.
“It isn’t so much that liberals are ignorant. It’s just that they know so many things that aren’t so.” – Ronald Reagan
Cross-posted at RWNO, my personal web site.