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The Ultra-White President Trump

Many celebrated the election of Donald Trump last November as the “revenge of the white man.” This vengeful sentiment continues today, and is more toxic than ever. A certain category of Americans never truly accepted Barack Obama’s presidential victory, nor the current changes that have been shaping U.S. society since the 1960s. Feminism, ethnic diversity, priority for minorities in universities...

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Deserving Tourists

Terrorist attacks have not damaged France’s appeal for travelers, and the country remains the world’s leading tourist destination. The current obstacles are above all the fault of the French government. Despite the recent terrorist attacks (and lunatics wandering around the foot of the Eiffel Tower holding knives) France’s appeal has not suffered any long-term damage. The country is still the...

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Who Actually Wants the Olympic Games?

It’s decided: Paris will host the 2024 Olympic Games. But this adventure is borne more by politics than sport, and we could be forgiven for asking if it is really necessary. And just how much will this mass entertainment cost the taxpayer? Paris has beaten Los Angeles in the race to host the 2024 Olympic Games. But where are the...

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France, the New World Leader (in Soft Power)

A symbolic rankings table published by a British public relations firm has revealed that France has supposedly become the world’s leading “soft power,” overtaking the United States. But what does it mean? “Soft power” is a recent term popularized in the 1990s by U.S. academic Joseph Nye. His theory opposed American military inventions and overly offensive positions by promoting the...

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France Needs an Innovation Revolution

Start-up incubators like Station F, which opened recently in Paris, are a sign of progress, but France needs radical change. Silicon Valley-based French-American innovator Navi Radjou lists three steps to foster innovation in France. With Emmanuel Macron as president and his party winning a decisive majority in recent parliamentary elections, France’s ailing economy may finally receive a shot in the arm....

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Trump Makes Merry in Paris

Donald Trump was Emmanuel Macron’s guest of honor at the July 14 celebrations in Paris, and seems to have forgotten the advice of his friend “Jim.” The American president has fallen back in love with France. Advantage: Macron. Macron hooked a big fish — Donald Trump — by using the bait that works best on the U.S. president: Flattery and...

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Revolution as Play in France

On July 14, Americans celebrate Bastille Day. On this day, the French celebrate more than their National Day or the anniversary of the Storming of the Bastille: They celebrate the everlasting spirit of the 1789 Revolution. “The French are better at fighting revolutions than making reforms”, wrote Alexis de Tocqueville in his notes in 1848. As a Deputy of the Manche...

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Scott Pruitt’s Crusade Against Ecology

The United States’ withdrawal from the Paris Agreement on climate change is the only tangible decision made by the Trump government in its five months of existence. The American president himself hesitated at length, before leaving it up to a militant, committed member of his staff: A certain Scott Pruitt, the ecologists’ enemy number one. In this baroque, incompetent administration,...

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The Jeff Koons Affair

American sculptor Jeff Koons gifted one of his creations to the city of Paris last November. But the gaudy work inspired by the Statue of Liberty is still a point of contention. The artist’s large-scale sculpture representing a bouquet of tulips is supposed to be pay homage to the victims of the Paris Attacks in 2015. The project is supported...

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France Discovers Vetting

Both the French and American presidents have the power to appoint people of their choosing to thousands of public sector positions, starting with their cabinet. The difference in France, however, is that no vetting of their background is required. Presidential nominations are not subject to any checks in France, whereas the equivalent appointments in the United States are generally preceded by...

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A Short Honeymoon

La majorité présidentielle contrôle désormais 65% de l’Assemblée nationale française. Cette victoire retentissante, toutefois, sera de courte durée : Emmanuel Macron aura fort à faire à la rentrée. Macron dispose des pleins pouvoirs. Ce qui, en réalité, lui donne seulement quelques mois de liberté pour accomplir la réforme essentielle, celle du droit du travail, entamée en 2016. A la rentrée, il...

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Macron as an Enlightened Despot

According to early estimates, the République en Marche ! party headed by President Emmanuel Macron is set to control more than 70% of the National Assembly. A rare case of political domination in French history. Macronism is a representation of a French passion: Enlightened despotism, that of Bonaparte and De Gaulle, the quest for a Savior. Its origins are ancient, with Voltaire immediately springing...

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Beware of King Macron

Emmanuel Macron's movement won by a landslide the first round of the French legislative election, held in North America last weekend. There is a real danger the domination of the En Marche ! movement will change the nature of the Republic. Macron’s candidate Roland Lescure came away with 57.53% of the votes in the United States and Canada, putting him 43 points...

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French Legislative Election: A Macron Landslide

En Amérique du Nord comme dans le reste du monde, les Français de l’étranger plébiscitent Emmanuel Macron, lui accordant en moyenne 50,14% des suffrages. Le candidat investi par Emmanuel Macron, Roland Lescure, recueille 57,53% des voix aux Etats-Unis et au Canada, se plaçant quarante-trois points devant son adversaire Républicain, le député sortant Frédéric Lefebvre. Les sortants sont partout battus. Paradoxe :...

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The Handshake

A striking image will remain etched in the public mind after the first meeting between Emmanuel Macron and Donald Trump: That of their interminable handshake. Far from assuming its usual salutary function, the gesture was nothing short of a declaration of independence. Macron had clearly observed Trump’s manners and behavior. Particularly with regard to his vigorous handshake, in which the...

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La Fête des Mères Versus Mother’s Day

There are two weeks between Mother’s Day in the United States and France, the former taking place on the second Sunday in May and the latter on the last. But calendars aside, their totally distinct origins sum up just how different our two societies really are. Mother’s Day in the U.S.A. was started in a Methodist church in West Virginia in 1908 by a...

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“Good” Muslims, and the Others

The same question is asked every time an Islamist terror attack shocks a Western city, such as Manchester this week. Are terrorists crusading warriors, or simply uprooted, frustrated young men? Are they “good” Muslims? On May 21, Donald Trump was in Riyadh giving a speech to Saudi leaders and the most important kings and emirs of the Arab world. In...

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The Symbol of the French Legislative Elections

June 2017 will see each of the 577 French legislative constituencies choose a deputy (equivalent to a member of Congress) to represent them at the National Assembly for the next five years. French people living in North America will elect their representative from 17 candidates on June 3 and 17. We can predict with some certainty which two main candidates...

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Macron, the Vocabulary of a Generation

By voting en masse for Emmanuel Macron, French people living in the United States chose a politician who is like them: business-minded, dynamic and open to the world. Has Emmanuel Macron been granted a true, popular mandate driven by his personality and his manifesto, or was he elected by default? The answer is probably both. The French presidential election bore a striking resemblance to...

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The National Front, a French Enigma

How can we define this party? Those who look kindly on it may describe it as patriotic, popular and a supporter of sovereignty. Hostile critics would prefer the terms populist, nationalist and fascist. In fact, it is both. Regardless of the (predictable) result of the French presidential election, we may wonder about what I feel is the most remarkable event of the electoral...

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The Demise of the French Party System? Not Just Yet!

The French election's central drama is more a characteristic of the rhetoric of the analysts than of the French polity, writes William Schonfeld, a professor of political science at UC-Irvine. Most commentators on the 2017 French presidential elections have emphasized the dramatic nature of the results. The traditional parties of the left and right have been eliminated on the first...