Sunday, December 10, 2006

Claude Reichman on France's crisis of faith

A new article has appeared by Claude Reichman, spokesperson and founder of France's Revolution Bleue, the blue revolution movement designed to give voice and direction for the few french economic and social conservatives.
It's in response to a poll that made the rounds of french media last week, suggesting that virtually half of France believes they may well become homeless some day.
When we talk of the crisis of faith currently plaguing western civilization, and western Europe in particular, need we see any further evidence of its deep roots than a poll that announces half of the nation can imagine themselves falling into homelessness...

[In translating this article from the original french, I've replaced a french term with our more familiar english one: in France they use the acronym, SDF, for "Sans Domicile Fixe", meaning "without a regular home", or "homeless".]

I think this was one of his best articles to date. In my haste to translate it this morning I hope I have not diluted its strength:

Rich or homeless, it’s your choice

One poll chases away another. Yet the one that has just been published by the EmmaĆ¼s society deserves inscribing in the memory, as it is a condemnation for France: 48% of people polled believe it possible for them to become homeless one day! This is what has become, in only thirty years, a nation that once was, and had a calling to remain, one of the richest in the world. Thirty years of socialist-communism and technocratic management has ruined and has plunged the nation’s inhabitants into anxiety and despair.

This is the genuine challenge of the forthcoming years in France, and it is not the 2007 presidential election that offers the slightest chance to respond to it. Go ahead and propose to millions of French that worry about becoming homeless to comtemplate your image, as Mme Royal does, or to satisfy oneself of a”quiet rupture”, as M. Sarkozy proclaims! We can guess their reaction with little effort. And this will inevitably manifest itself at the ballot box. Which is why the electoral predictions for 2007 hold no sense whatsoever.
Much as the presidential election will certainly be only one of the episodes in the great French crisis which unrolls before our eyes and whose effects will stagger the economic, social and political landscape.
What the licensed observers have not understood, as they only examine the situation through the declarations of the politicians and their entourage, is that the French political and media scene is only a shadow theater. The scene currently playing has no relation to the life of ordinary citizens. And these citizens are pressed to notice at what point the few dozen individuals of both sexes which are the actors of this sinister farce are mocking them and their problems. The last known example of such contempt in the history of our country was that of the priviledged of the ancien regime on the eve of the Revolution. We know how that ended! Yet, as Tocqueville wrote, “in a democracy, each generation is a new people”.
Those who constitute the ruling class have retained none of the lessons of history. They will pay a heavy price for it.

The real danger that France is courting is not the clash on the near horizon, but the state in which she will find herself when she gets out of it. Our nation might just as well sink into a terrible civil war as give herself a new public-approved ruling class which will heave it outside the sinkhole it has fallen into. The worst is possible, and even probable, but it is not certain. One hears today only irresponsible demagogues in the media. However there exists a parallel world, which more than half of French homes have access to today, called high-speed internet. A website like the one you’re reading at this moment has an audience reaching one hundred thousand pages read every month. And these articles go around the global blogosphere. The system’s media can pursue their campaign of permanent intoxication, they will come to nothing against the irresistible advance of honest and lucid information.

3 comments:

truepeers said...

The real danger that France is courting is not the clash on the near horizon, but the state in which she will find herself when she gets out of it. Our nation might just as well sink into a terrible civil war as give herself a new public-approved ruling class which will heave it outside the sinkhole it has fallen into.

-this is really the key; at many web sites you can read people pronouncing the inevitability of a civil war in Europe soon. SOme relish the idea, without preparing for it. But unless people spend time now pre-figuring the values that can transcend any brewing conflict, they will find themselves in just as bad a mess if not worse, after the call to arms. They will get another Lenin or Stalin or Hitler, except in a way we can't yet imagine... So how will we subsume the present conflict in a new compact that can include all the allies and values we need on our side in this war? That is the question for those who remember the fact that western culture is founded not just in reason and faith, but in covenants that expand human freedom and self-understanding. THere is lots of intellectual work to be done now.

Good work, Charles

dag said...

I began by resopnding to your copy above, but as it got lengthier all while I decided to put the whole thing below. You've written on a topic so crucial to our futures that I think we must go over this again and again in the hope that finally people will get what it's about. I understand that it's hard for most people, even those in France, to grasp the seriousness of what they face, let alone those of us who are so far removed from any real conflict for the foreseeable future. But now is the time to prepare for the time we must be prepared.

Charles Henry said...

Re-reading the article, I now realize I left off a rather important word.
Near the end of the piece, mr. Reichman mentions, "A website like the one you’re reading at this moment has an audience reaching one hundred **thousand** pages read every month...", not just one hundred pages.
I've corrected the error in my post.
(I guess I have to eat some humble pie now, due to the reuters post I put up this morning, on the Queen..!)