Emmanuel Macron ascended to the pinnacle of French politics in a carefully scripted manner, ensuring the mood picked up by the cameras was one of hope, optimism and popular enthusiasm. He proclaimed that the nation had chosen liberty, equality and fraternity, ahead of the politics of hate – he was, of course, referring to his nearest challenger Marine Le Pen with this latter quip.
However, his presidency has provided the French people with a glimpse of the reality, behind the facade engendered for the television cameras. Unpopular labour reforms, of the sort that practically destroyed former president Monsieur Hollande, have been forced through, leading to plummeting popularity and waves of strikes through a multitude of public sectors.
Rather than listen to the people, Macron has doubled down on his actions and begun to silence his closest political rivals. Earlier this year, French judges blocked over two-million Euros worth of subsidies to Marine Le Pen’s National Rally Party, as part of a long-running (but never-ending) investigation into the party’s alleged misuse of EU funds – notably, they’re loathed to actually conclude the investigation, for their is no evidence and Le Pen’s party would be acquitted. Perennial investigation ensures guilt until proven otherwise.
But it is not just the dissident right that the French President has targeted. On 16th October, radical leftist politician (and 2017 presidential challenger) Jean-Luc Mélenchon had his La France Insoumise party’s offices raided, as well as his personal residence, under the pretext of “financial irregularities”. Mélenchon live-streamed the event on Facebook, during which he claimed that Macron had co-opted the security forces and turned them into a political police force. Given the serious lack of evidence of any wrongdoing in this case, it’s hard to argue with the left-winger’s assessment of things.
Mélenchon’s political activities in recent months perhaps shed more light upon his party’s current predicament. Not only is he still widely popular after his impressive presidential campaign, he’s also been heavily involved in the organisation of industrial action in the public sector in opposition to Macron’s incredibly unpopular labour reforms. He’s seen as a thorn in the side of Monsieur Macron, a thorn which the devious president is intent on removing.
The evidence against Macron’s government is compounded by the opinion polls in France. Macron’s popularity has slumped well below 30% in recent months, whilst his two most serious personal rivals in the political arena, according to opinion polls, are… Marine Le Pen and Jean-Luc Mélenchon. It is, therefore, logical to assume that the French justice department is no longer feigning independence, but is instead operating as Macron’s and République en Marche’s political police, harassing the leaders of dissident movements in order to remove any real opposition to his globalist, neo-liberal agenda.
It is important that the antithesis to these actions are less partisan than the actions themselves. Despite significant differences, supporters of Le Pen and Mélenchon can find common cause on a number of issues, enough to coordinate a unified resistance to these measures for the time being. We, on the nationalist right, cannot turn a blind eye to neo-liberal despotism just because we may dislike today’s targets, for tomorrow, it’s you who will become the target.