The news cycle has been dominated by the shootings for the last 24 hours.The headline became a Trumpline when the addled POTUS inserted himself into the French presidential election by predicting that the terror attack would benefit Marine Le Pen. Trump is probably right.
But it is not good enough for Le Pen to make it to the final round. We need her to be joined by a real leftist, Jean-Luc Mélenchon. What the mainstream media in France is referring to as the "Doomsday Scenario."
It is Doomsday for the neoliberal center because the purveyors of the bankrupt status quo would have no mount in the race. Hence, the problem -- Who to demonize, Le Pen or Mélenchon? Mélenchon would probably be the one to wear the goat's horns since he favors communistic prescriptions -- a universal basic income -- as well as pacifistic ones -- withdraw France from NATO.
It is hard for me to comprehend how a plurality of French, let alone a majority, could vote for Macron. It is all the same stuff -- anti-labor, pro-intervention, the celebration of the rich and the elite -- that is destroying not only Western Civilization but the planet itself.
Let's hope the French can show as much personal courage as the English.
The doomsday scenario
Just imagine the shock when at 8pm (or perhaps later, this year) on Sunday French TV stations broadcast the images of the two winners and it’s the face of hard left anti-EU, anti-globalisation Jean-Luc Mélenchon’s alongside the anti-EU, anti-globalisation figure of Marine Le Pen.
It would for many French voters, be the nearest thing to getting tasered. For those who work for the EU in Brussels it would more like getting tear gassed.
A battle between Mélenchon and Le Pen was described by former presidential favourite Alain Juppé as being like “the plague vs cholera".
Macron supporting veteran centrist François Bayrou said the prospect was "terrifying for the country and for its image and its future."
A “French Hugo Chavez” against a “French Donald Trump”.
There is talk of a Black Monday with the financial markets going into meltdown the day after the result is announced due mainly to fears over a Frexit and talk of an imminent mass exodus by French entrepreneurs.
With Le Pen wanting to pull France out of the euro and Mélenchon wanting to introduce a 32-hour work week and tax earnings over €400,000 by 100 percent, French business leader Pierre Gattaz said a run-off between the paid would force France to choose between “economic disaster and economic chaos.”
Edouard Lecerf from polling agency Kantar Public believes this pairing of the two anti-system is still the most unlikely scenario because it would mean the whole centre of French politics would be eliminated.
Who would win?
Polls suggest the far left Mélenchon would win fairly comfortably by around 60 percent to 40 percent.
Le Pen or Mélenchon because both would then struggle to get a majority in parliament, plus those twitchy investors.
But the real loser would of course be François Fillon, who would be “crucified”, as one party big wig put it. Macron might also want to try and get his old job back at the bank.
Interestingly, of the six scenarios -- Le Pen-Macron; Le Pen-Mélenchon; Macron-Fillon; Fillon-Le Pen; Fillon-Mélenchon; Macron-Mélenchon -- Macron is the only candidate who was not out-polled in the second round. Next up is Mélenchon. Then Fillon. Dead last in the second round is Marine Le Pen who is incapable of polling above 42%.
A lot of this is hogwash. In a head-to-head contest margins will tighten between Sunday and May 7. I do think Le Pen is vulnerable because of the institutional odor of the National Front.