Sarkozy in chocolate makes less damage

Blogging is hard these days. I’m busy, I’ve had visitors and I’m experiencing a personal earthquake*. And when all this is going on in the fieldworker’s life, the presidential election is approaching.

However, contrary to what I expected after the previous stormy spring in Paris, not much is actually going on. I have a pressing feeling of silence before the storm, while a more sinister friend of mine made up the metaphor of the silence of the tiptoeing of slippers before the reverberation of the boots…. His dark vision is that France will wake up and go to work just as normal when the catastrophe hits, - and it will hit, according to him. On a far more positive note, another acquaintance said that Sarkozy was too extreme to be voted president of France. He guessed that he wouldn’t even to through to the second round.

As I’ve mentioned before, the most frequent reproach against Sarkozy I hear, is that he divides the population (the worst faut pas in the indivisible republic) – between for instance “the good and the bad” (editorial in Libération 18/04).

The adversary candidates Royal (socialist) and Bayrou (centrist), said on their last meetings that France could not have a president with a mask of fear and who’s project is himself (Royal) and someone who loves power more than he loves France (Bayrou). Heavy criticism of this sort is coming up from various angles in the press at the moment. I just can’t imagine that he will go through, and if he does, I certainly can’t imagine what will happen…

The situation is tense everywhere and quite unlikely people are appealing to voter utile (“vote usefull” – thus gathering around the one candidate on the “left” who has a chance to go through to the second round, i.e. Ségolène Royal).

Racist slur on the wall outside the café Nuits Blanches
The slam scenes seem as much waiting and seeing as the rest of society. Some people claim that opportunists are turning up with political texts just to jump on the bandwagon (slam is highly hyped at the moment, and there are presumably agents from record companies and other possible sources of employment present on the soirées). Personally, I haven’t noticed that the texts are more political now than they were when I started seven months ago.

The climate of fear has however killed off one of my favourite slam venues, the weekly night at Les Nuits Blanches nearby Gare de Lyon. After complaints about noise from neighbours, which is one thing, and the shockingly plain racist threat – written with adult handwriting on their wall – mort aux Arabes rentez chez vous (death to the Arabs. go home), they decided to cancel the event. The owner immediately related the threat to the climate of the election campaign…



Oh, how could I be so stupid to put on Gainsbourg for writing at such a time? At the momen I hit the keyboard with this very sentence, his Chanson de Prévert (YoutTube) hit like an aftershock…

Å jeg vil at mens du minnes
Denne sange som var din
Jeg tror det var din favoirtt
At den er av Prévert og Kosma
Og at hver gang Dødt Løv [feuilles mortes]
Minner deg om meg
Slutter død kjærlighet [amours mortes]
Ikke å dø


Kan man aldri vite hvor den begynner
Og hvor den slutter, likegyldigheten
Høst går til vinter
Og når sangen til Prévert
Dødt Løv
Viskes ut av minnet mitt
Den dagen har de sluttet å dø
Mine døde kjærligheter


Comment from: Åsne [Visitor]

Royal mot Sarkozy … er det mye mobilisering fram mot neste runde av valget? Eller har folk svidd av det meste av kruttet i opptakten?

26/04/07 @ 13:27
Comment from: [Member]

Hi Åsne

It’s absolutely a strong mobilisation going on, under the heading “Tout sauf Sarkozy". I saw in Le Monde yesterday that Sarkozy himself claimed that this “everything but Sarkozy” is a media created campaign - if that’s what he really thinks the possible future president of France has no clue about what’s going on in the population! People I know where in shock and disbelief to learn that 31,11% of the population had voted for him.

Just after the result was proclaimed on Sunday, the sans-papiers (the best demonstrators in France!) organised a demonstration between Place de la République and Bastille. Before we arrived at Bastille, we were surrounded by Robocop geared CRS police who closed off all sidestreets and kept us stuck between their shields, riot cars and heavy armour for 45 minutes! When they finally let us go (after bringing in loads, I think…), I counted CRS vans and busses! They outnumbered the demonstrators…

The sans-papiers mobilised against Sarkozy in general and his suggested Ministry of National Identity and Immigration in particular. Since then, I’ve heard various slammers improvise more or less explicitly about the situation. As was the case 5 years ago, when Le Pen was came to the second round in the elections, the mobilisation will probably culminate the 1st of May.


Ps: Takk for e-posten. Det er alltid oppmuntrende å høre fra deg :) Og lykke til igjen med innspurten! Det skal bli spennende å se resultatet.

26/04/07 @ 14:01

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