Tag Archives: Feudalism

France`s unemployment rate of the population aged 15-64 years stood at 64,7 percent in December last year

People in France are tired of their status-quo and want a change. This is clearly seen in this year’s election where two outsider candidates are in the final. It is the same frustration in France as it is in the U.S. People try to vote for different candidates than ordinary politicians.

They voted for Obama because they wanted a change. People were looking for hope, and Obama must have done something right. Under his administration, the unemployment rate declined from about 10 to today`s 4,5 percent.

 

 

Can the next President in France do the same? In my last article I wrote about Macron who said he wants to re-forge France`s politics, culture, and ideology. If Macron is the next President, he has a heavy job to do.

France`s unemployment rate reached an all-time high in the first quarter of 1997. It peaked at 10,70 percent. But the unemployment rate is still very high and fell slightly to 10 percent in December last year.

Frances unemployment rate of the population aged 15-64 years stood at 64,7 percent in December quarter last year. Its even more shocking to see that their record low is 7,20 percent in the first quarter of 2008.

We have seen a lot of demonstrations in France recently, and now we understand why. People are not satisfied and Frances next President have to do something with that. If their record low is 7,20 percent he doesnt need to do much to fix that, but I assume that 7,20 is not good enough. So, what are they suppose to do? Let`s take a look at the French Constitution, article 1;

 

 

 

Its a revolution going on, but France has seen that many times before. The biggest one happened in 1789 until 1799, and Its very interesting to see what the triggers are. Historians widely regard the Revolution at that time as one of the most important events in human history.

The causes of the French Revolution are complex, but following the seven years war and the American Revolution War, the French government was deeply in debt and attempted to restore its financial status through unpopular taxation schemes.

Historians have pointed many events and factors within the Ancien Regime that led to the Revolution. Rising social and economic inequality, new political ideas emerging from the Enlightenment, economic mismanagement, environmental factors leading to agricultural failure, unmanageable national debt, and political mismanagement on the part of King Louis XVI who was executed.

Louis XVI ascended to the throne in the middle of a financial crisis in which the state was faced with a budget deficit and was nearing bankruptcy. This was due in part to France`s costly involvements in the Seven Years War and later the American Revolution.

In May 1776, finance minister Turgot was dismissed, after failing to enact reforms. A year later, Jacques Necker realized that the country`s extremely regressive tax system subjected the lower classes to a heavy burden.

He argued that the country could not be taxed higher; that tax exemptions for the nobility and clergy must be reduced, and proposed that borrowing more money would solve the country`s fiscal shortages.

Exactly the same pattern can be seen now. France has never had so much debt. France`s debt reached an all-time of 96 percent last year.

Demands for change were formulated in terms of Enlightenment ideals and contributed to the convocation of the Estates-General in May 1789. The first year of the Revolution saw members of the Third Estated taking control, the assault on the Bastille in July.

A central event of the first stage was the abolition of feudalism and the old rules and privileges left over from the Ancien Regime.

The outcome of the Revolution was the establishment of a secular and democratic republic that became increasingly authoritarian and militaristic. It was a radical change based on liberalism and other enlightenment principles.

Furthermore, we saw a rise of Napoleon Bonaparte with armed conflicts with other European countries. Napoleon became the hero of the Revolution through his popular military campaigns, went on to establish the Consulate and later the First Empire, setting the stage for a wider array of global conflicts in the Napoleonic Wars.

The dictatorship imposed by the Committee of Public Safety during the Reign of Terror, from 1793 until 1794, established price controls on food and other items, abolished slavery in French colonies abroad, dechristianized society through the creation of a new calendar and the expulsion of religious figures, and secured the borders of the new republic from its enemies.

A fundamental document of the French Revolution and in the history of human and civil rights is the Declaration of the Rights of Man and of the Citizen passed by France`s National Constituent Assembly in August 1789.

The Declaration was directly influenced by Thomas Jefferson, working with General Lafayette, who introduced it.

Influenced also by the doctrine of «natural right», the rights of man are held to be universal; valid at all times and in every place, pertaining to human nature itself. It became the basis for a nation of free individuals protected by the law.

It is included in the preamble of the constitutions of both the Fourth French Republic (1946) and Fifth Republic (1958) and is still current. Inspired in part by the American Revolution, and also by the Enlightenment philosophers, the Declaration was a core statement of the values of the French Revolution and had a major impact on the development of freedom and democracy in Europe and worldwide.

The modern era has unfolded in the shadow of the French Revolution, and the values and institutions of the Revolution dominate French politics to this day. Hundreds of years later, it`s interesting to see the same demand for change and hope.

They executed the King at that time. Now, people are voting for non-politicians, are against the establishment and humiliate modern party politics of left and right. Macron knows that and once said, the system «has ceased to protect those it should protect».

Don`t forget The Declaration`s article II: The goal of any political association is the conservation of the natural and imprescriptible rights of man. These are liberty, property, safety and resistance against oppression.

The role of government is to recognize and secure these rights.

 

 

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Greek`s productivity was higher than China`s

Greece is considered the cradle of Western civilization, being the birthplace of democracy, Western philosophy, the Olympic Games and mathematical principles to name a few. They were annexed by Rome in the second century BC, becoming an integral part of the Roman Empire and its successor, the Byzantine Empire.

The Greek Orthodox Church also shaped modern Greek identity and transmitted Greek traditions to the wider Orthodox World. Falling under Ottoman dominion in the mid-15th century, the modern nation-state of Greece emerged in 1830 following a war of independence.

 

 

Most of mainland Greece and the Aegean islands was under Ottoman control by the end of the 15th century. The only part of the Greek-speaking world that escaped long-term Ottoman rule was the Ionian islands, which Venetian until their capture by the First French Republic in 1797, then passed to the United Kingdom in 1809 until their unification with Greece in 1864.

While some Greeks in the Ionian islands and Constantinople lived in prosperity, and Greeks of Constantinople achieved positions of power within the Ottoman administration, much of the population of mainland Greece suffered the economic consequences of the Ottoman conquest.

Heavy taxes were enforced, and in later years the Ottoman Empire enacted a policy of creation of hereditary estates, effectively turning the rural Greek population into serfs (status of many peasants under feudalism).

The decline of serfdom in Western Europe has sometimes been attributed to the Black death, which reached Europe in 1347. Tibet is described by Melvyn Goldstein to have had serfdom until 1959, and the United Nations 1956 supplementary Convention on the Abolition of Slavery also prohibits serfdom as a form of slavery.

The Nazis destroyed Greece during the World War II. There were 80 000 jews in Greece at that time and nearly everyone was killed. Now it is about 5 000 left. The Nazis burned Greeks houses and about 1 000 000 were homeless. The U.S Marshall plan gave Greece a boost after WWII and the economy started to grow again.

Its strange because most Western philosophical traditions began in Ancient Greece in the 6th century BC. So, how could the Greeks democracy fail, and why are they in trouble right now?

Their productivity was sky-high only a few years ago. In 2003, the GDP was higher than China`s GDP right now. Greece GDP in 2003 was at an all-time high of 6,80 which is impressive. Now, the picture is very different. GDP is down -1,1 percent.

Greece is the anti-austerity country with a lot of problems after six years of deep recession. Household consumption is the main component of GDP and accounts for 72 percent of its total use. Exports of goods and services account for 33 percent, while imports account for 35 percent.

Many of the Greek citizens claim that they got problems after joining the European Union in 2001. In 2007, right before the financial crisis, GDP per capita reached an all-time high of 30056,68, but now it has declined to 22573,42 US dollars.

The Anti-Austerity country is also seeing their own wages falling. Wages in Greece decreased to 1092,01 EUR per month in April last year. The good news is that the Unemployment rate is down to 23,1 in December last year, which is much better than their all-time high of 27,90 in July of 2013.

Data shows growth for the year proves the economy is performing better than expected and that no more austerity measures are needed. A Greek spokesman said the government won`t pass one more euro of extra austerity measure.

The European Commission expect the Greek economy to expand 2,7 percent this year and 3,1 percent in 2018. Uncertainty over completion of the current bailout review poses a downside risk to those forecasts, the Commission said.

In a big picture, what we face in Greece now is just a part of an evolution.

 

 

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