Friday, March 17, 2006
Out of Touch
As the protests in France against the new CPE labour law continue, it looks increasingly as though Chirac and the French government are going to have to make a radical rethink of their social and domestic policies. The crux of the matter is the government's remoteness from the economic realities of everyday life in French society. It was these economic and social concerns - and not "radical Islam" - that were at the root of last November's riots in the banlieues, and only some kind of new social contract with the youth of France is going to avert a national crisis of the kind seen in 1968.