Monday, August 29, 2016


August is coming to a close and silence is the golden rule.  BREXIT has come and gone without the calamity many predicted and it appears that while there may not always be an England, it isn't going anywhere yet.  Which has apparently caused some to ask maybe it wasn't such a bad idea after all.

Regular members might remember that I predicted that the real fall-out from BREXIT would not be in the UK but in the Union, but I thought that the nationalistic juices would be set flowing in the southern counties first.  Wrong again.  Italy has been quiet (August)? Spain, still without a government is moving right along and now that La Liga has started up again people have other things to argue about.  Greece and Portugal?  Who cares, really.  Nope, things are really quiet.  But not in France.

Despite the national month off, French politicians are beginning to act like their American cousins: attack, attack, attack with a ferocity that has not been seen for a while.  The other startling thing is that while it wasn't difficult to sense blood in the water--Frankie Holland's blood--he now faces three
formidable challengers; one internal, one external and one waaay out of left field.

Marine LePen we all know about.  Far right, very nationalistic and hated even more by the European press that Donald Trump by NBC News.

Nikki Sarkozy (he with the hottest first lady around unless The Donald wins this thing) is back with virilent attacks on Frankie.

And then there is Arnaud Montebourg...who?  Well, a socialist, that's who but sounding very much like a Christian Democrat right out of the German playbook with a little bit of Ronald Reagan thrown in.  But in addition to the numbers of Frankie's opposition, there is one common thread that is even more stunning.

Of Le Pen it was expected, but from the other two it was not.  Not one of them has rejected the idea of a French exit from the Union.  Stunning.  France is a real country and when LePen has at this stage a good 1/3 of the electorate in support one must begin to ask one's self whether her opponents will be forced to move further to the right in order to stay competative in the coming race.  The reasons are simple: immigration and terrorism on one hand and the stagnation of the French economy due to the global near-recession, antequated labor laws and stilfling regulation.  Sound familliar?  Oh yes, there is one other thing.   Germany.    And the view that all of Europe is fast becoming a vassal state or as a great German friend of mine put it: "Angela is brilliant!  She has achieved all of Bismark's plan without firing a shot."  I detected a hint of nostalga in that; after all, life gets a bit dull without a war every 40 years or so, but perhaps I was wrong.  Angela may have won the war, but she may lose the final battle.

I suspect all of this is not lost on Ms. May who has begun to make noises about pulling the trigger in the spring which will place, as the Brits are so fond of saying, a cat among the (French) pigeons.  In the Fly-Over Zone no one could care less.  A billion Chinese also have a distinct lack of interest I suspect, but more to the point I doubt if our financial geniuses have gotten the word out in Southampton and points east that this Euro thing could get really dicey in a month of so.  Something to think about.  Then again, a couple of beauts this weekend: USC at Alabama and Notre Dame at Texas.  Huh.  Come to think about it, things are looking up.

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