What do Globalism, immigration, and croissants have in common? A whole host of issues, it turns out. La Francia is dealing with many an issue, but the main problem and its solution are stories as old as time.
Macron, the French President, is under intense scrutiny following his decision to forge ahead with reforms to reshape the economy despite months of sometimes violent yellow vest protests against his government.
Driving this unrest is anger, particularly among low-paid workers (read “migrants“, “refugees” “engineers and doctors coming to save us”, over rising living costs (which is a serious issue in most of Europe) and a belief that Macron is indifferent to citizens’ needs as he enacts reforms seen as pro-business and favouring the wealthy.
All of these reasons are why the Yellow Vests happened in the first place. But now, after the dust has settled, little seems to have been achieved, long term wise.
The protest movement emerged late last year as a response to high, since-scrapped, fuel tax hikes and quickly became a citizen-led revolt against the Macron government, widely perceived as arrogant and elitist.
Gerard Larcher, a conservative senator, echoed French citizens’ displeasure with Macron: “This [monarchical] style – which is rejected by scores of French people – fuels fear, anxiety, feelings of rejection and also erodes trust in government decision-making.”
The former investment banker is wary of simmering public anger over his renewed reform push. What he plans to do with the complex French pension system remains to be seen, as does the response of the people to said reforms…
The problem with all of this is, as ever, depressingly familiar. Immigration.
In an effort to not kick a dead horse I’ll tackle the issue from a different angle than usual. Croissants.
It’s no secret that immigrants (Not all. Why does this even need to be stressed?), particularly from third world countries, tend to be relegated to, or even only be able to do, less than desirable jobs. When one thinks of emigrating to a renowned Western country, baking pastries usually isn’t the reason for their leaving their home country. Usually.
The migrant crisis of 2015 was anything but “usual”, though. With well over a million people pouring into Europe, many of whom did so illegally and without justifiable cause. As many more have done since. Even now, most “refugees” are working low-skill low-paid work, such as working in pastry shops, and this is the exception, not the rule. Understandably, they are bitter. So are the citizens of European countries whose living standards and wages go down because of the extra taxes and burdens on the system that this new influx of people has created… a dangerous concoction.
The solution is painfully simple, help these people, in their own countries.
There is no other, viable, sustainable, way.
Until this is brought about, the situation will only worsen. Our Continent is old and has seen much, it hurts to see the mistakes of the past be repeated in modern times, but hey, profit is profit.