France and the world are holding their breath

After 200 years of failed universal suffrage that allows the rich to buy political power, the fact of appointing masters instead of passing laws is a political imposture and it is not a democracy.
April 30, 2017 | 5min read

If you have followed the news, you must already know all eyes are on France and the 2nd round of the 2017 French presidential elections on 7th May. If you have not, the 1st round of the presidential elections ended up with Emmanuel Macron (24,01 %) and Marine Le Pen (21,03%) going through. Third position attributed to Francois Fillon (20,01%), a right-wing and conservative leader, and Jean-Luc Mélenchon (19,58%) a “real” left-wing leader. I, myself, have voted for Jean-Luc Mélenchon. Why? Because he’s the only one fighting for environmental and social justice. Check out my latest blogpost if you want to know more about it.

Who is Macron? A former Minister of Economy and Finance and the leader of En Marche! a social-liberal party he created. Who is Marine Le Pen? The leader of Front National (FN), a right-wing populist and nationalist political party. So yes, this extreme right party has gotten 21,03% of the vote in France. Where have we gone wrong? I wish I’d know!

You choose in the 1st round and eliminate in the 2nd

It’s historical now in France you choose in the 1st round and eliminate in the 2nd round.

Candidates who have almost nothing in common with the frontrunner support him and forget their political convictions. Fillon, right-wing, is voting now for Macron. Hamon, socialist party, is voting now for Macron. And they are calling their electors to do so too. At the same time, they have to. Otherwise, they are ruining their political party and career. Yet, you only have one candidate, Mélenchon, who has spent his life fighting the FN, who hasn’t officially declare voting for Macron and called his electors to vote with their conscience. And of course, the press and politicians are getting all excited about it and criticising him.

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But, we have a short memory. We have also forgotten the critics he received when he called his electors to vote for Hollande, Macron’s master, against Sarkozy in 2012. Only a stupid man will repeat the same mistake twice. As if the media propaganda could make us believe for one second he would vote for Marine Le Pen. Anyways, we now have the explanation for his silence. On his youtube channel, he affirmed not voting for Marine Le Pen, and getting ready for his next step, the legislative election next June, where his party and the 7 million electors who voted for him can make the change we all need so much in the system. Anyone, without a doubt, should vote against the FN. But voting against the FN, by voting for Macron, is not as easy as one would think.

A poor continuity. At least with no surprises

Macron is a continuity of Hollande disastrous mandate. He is the extreme finance candidate. Yes, he is, and if you think otherwise, you’re not being honest with yourself. Yes, he claims himself neither left neither right, but he was part of Hollande’s government. In my opinion, it could have been a good opportunity to put an end to this useless left-right parties debate. But no. Only to prepare the future, he left the government to be ready for the replacement of his master. Needless to remind you it’s the first time in the history of the republic of France a running president doesn’t represent himself.

French President Hollande and economy advisor Macron walk in the Elysee Palace in Paris

But again, Hollande as Macron are here for the benefits of the establishment who placed them there in the first place. He will serve the interests of these people who are the richest 1% of the population. And I warn you, France could suffer again for 5 years the same way it suffered from Hollande. A poor continuity. At least with no surprises. Actually, it’s good for France to have some continuity in the ideas and program for once. And not changing and going back to Fillon / Sarkozy and its right-wing conservative mafia. But we should give him the benefit of the doubt to do better and let’s see it as a positive thing. Plus he’s going to be the youngest President of the French Republic. I know who cares.

Because Macron will involve France in many wars

Now how an immigrant like me wouldn’t vote against the FN and vote for Macron without any hesitation? First, let me introduce myself (for the readers who don’t know me). I’m Lebanese, born in Beirut in 1988 (if my age matters to you) and have lived there until my 20s when I travelled to France. After 6 years living in France, I have become a French citizen. You might know the historical relations between Lebanon and France, and that’s why I’m proud to be a Lebanese-French citizen. But of course, I’m Lebanese before being French. Without removing any merit of me becoming French, the country where I had most of my experiences as a youngster. So why I cannot vote for Macron without any hesitation? Because Macron, like Hollande, will involve France in many wars in the Middle East, instead of ending them. He will continue fighting Russia and its government. And not only war but also weapons selling to Saudi Arabia, Qatar, etc. who have their own responsibility in the chaos happening in the Middle East.

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And because of this endless war in Syria, we have welcomed in Lebanon around 2 millions refugees (half of the Lebanese population) we cannot take care of, as our government cannot even take care of us (60% of the Lebanese population is poor). Macron is definitely not the right person to end this madness as he comes from the establishment who benefits from these wars. It’s an undeniable fact. But then, I figured out voting is a matter of public interest not only personal. I cannot be responsible for ruining France only to save my country, where the complexity of the situation in the region is incalculable.

Life is about sacrifices. And voting for Macron is giving up some of my moral and political convictions to fight the racism, fascism and negationism of a party who will divide France. My head still tells me to vote blank, but my heart urges me to vote for Macron. France gave me so much and I cannot abandon it when it needs me the most. The Middle East and the world are fucked up, and a solution won’t be found by having a fractured France. Thus, on the 2nd round of the French presidential elections next Sunday, I have decided to follow my heart and vote for Emmanuel Macron.

Yet, dear reader, we are not exempt of a FN stronger comeback again in 5 years. That’s why we need to fight Macron, from his first day in office, and Le Pen too in the legislative. We live in a capitalist world dominated by a consumerist society. The system has to change, we cannot wait any longer.  We’re ruining the beauty of what we have, we must fight climate change. And last but not least, to avoid a similar 2nd round situation in 5 years or later, we must change the electoral system. What about using a preferential system like in Australia? Something to think about.

“After 200 years of failed universal suffrage that allows the rich to buy political power, the fact of appointing masters instead of passing laws is a political imposture and it is not a democracy. “ Etienne Chouard, French economics and law teacher