France to the eurozone: But we don’t want to implement more austerity measures

posted at 8:01 pm on February 19, 2013 by Erika Johnsen

Last year, self-proclaimed Socialist Francois Hollande and his fellow Socialist lawmakers were elected to the presidency and parliament in a glorious wave of anti-austerity enthusiasm, as he promised to raise taxes on the wealthy, grow the economy, and eschew those nasty “right-wing” policies of former President Sarkozy.

…Which is getting kind of awkward, because Hollande did assure Brussels he would have no problem sticking with the previous government’s promise to keep France’s nominal budget deficit to below three percent of GDP in the international effort to rescue the euro. As you might imagine, it’s a feat that the Socialists have been oddly unable to manage so far (which is just plain weird, because socialist policies logically and historically work every time in growing the economy, or whatever). In light of the eurozone’s recently and ‘unexpectedly’ disappointing economic growth reports, however, and Germany and France’s respective roles as the largest and second-largest economies in the eurozone, Berlin and Brussels really must insist that France do its part to keep their eyes on the prize of fiscal sustainability. The Financial Times reports:

François Hollande will make his first visit as French president to Greece on Tuesday carrying the same anti-austerity message to Athens that won him election to the Élysée Palace last May. …

But managing the balance between growth and austerity has become a bit more complicated for Mr Hollande back home in France – and with his European partners (notably Germany) – since his Socialist government admitted it was likely to miss its key goal for the public finances this year because of slumping growth in the eurozone. …

The problem for Mr Hollande is that Brussels and Berlin may now insist that France wields an additional budgetary axe to ensure the deficit target is met after all – in other words they may insist on more austerity. …

But Mr Hollande’s government, which spent most of its early deficit-cutting energies on big tax increases, is only now getting down to the painful business of allocating reductions in public spending to achieve the €60bn in cuts it has earmarked over the next five years.

Public spending, by the way, accounts for a whopping 56 percent of GDP, the second-highest ratio in Europe — and yet the Socialists remain reluctant to even take a crack at cutting down any of these government outlays, quelle horreur, while the rest of the eurozone also continues to keel over beneath the weight of their collective inability to stop the spending. Do you suppose that that attitude had anything to do with them coming in with so much negative economic growth in the last quarter, peut-être?

Eurozone rules require that member countries meet their deficit reduction targets in the collective fight to salvage the whole thing from ruin, but if even not-a-bit-player France cannot/will not do their part, I don’t think Germany will be at all pleased. These are going to be some tense negotiations.


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Unexpected….

KCB on February 19, 2013 at 8:03 PM

Totally unexpected!

Scrumpy on February 19, 2013 at 8:05 PM

Hi Scrump!

KCB on February 19, 2013 at 8:05 PM

Les perdants. Le sigh.

petefrt on February 19, 2013 at 8:06 PM

Public spending, by the way, accounts for a whopping 56 percent of GDP, the second-highest ratio in Europe — and yet the Socialists remain reluctant to even take a crack at cutting down any of these government outlays, quelle horreur!!

Oh the horror for the french people when sacre bleu the money runs out!

Socialists and their socialism…sigh

When will they ever learn?

Rhetorical question :-)

Scrumpy on February 19, 2013 at 8:07 PM

Hello Ken! How are you?

Scrumpy on February 19, 2013 at 8:08 PM

“This won’t add a dime to the deficit…”

Oops!

Wrong incompetent commie…

workingclass artist on February 19, 2013 at 8:08 PM

I once had to tell my sister-in-law to cut up her credit cards. I imagine this is going to go as well as that did.

sharrukin on February 19, 2013 at 8:08 PM

How Sweet to Be An Idiot

/How sweet

Rock on, Congress. Rock. On.

Key West Reader on February 19, 2013 at 8:08 PM

Scrumpy on February 19, 2013 at 8:08 PM

Pretty good. Killing time. Frankly, I would be surprised if things aren’t much worse than reported thus far. Politicians only give out the bad news that they absolutely have to.

KCB on February 19, 2013 at 8:11 PM

Les “grenouilles” sont dans le pot et c’est sur un support mijoter, attendez jusqu’à ébullition!

The “frogs” are in the pot and it’s on a medium simmer, wait till it boils!!!

Scrumpy on February 19, 2013 at 8:11 PM

Key West Reader on February 19, 2013 at 8:08 PM

Hello hello HELLO!! How you be? :-)

Scrumpy on February 19, 2013 at 8:11 PM

KWR! :-)

KCB on February 19, 2013 at 8:13 PM

KCB on February 19, 2013 at 8:11 PM

I believe it’s worse than we are let to know!

Me too, I just stomped all over time! ;-)

Scrumpy on February 19, 2013 at 8:14 PM


I don’t think Germany will be at all pleased. These are going to be some tense negotiations.

I’d suggest that if France pisses off Germany, WE STAY OUT OF IT!

Of course Barry loves the French, so he’ll have to get involved. Perhaps we can give him a rifle, flack jacket and helmet and send him over in a helicopter.

GarandFan on February 19, 2013 at 8:14 PM

GarandFan on February 19, 2013 at 8:14 PM
Of course Barry loves the French, so he’ll have to get involved. Perhaps we can give him a rifle, flack jacket and helmet and send him over in a helicopter.

Bloody good idea!!

Scrumpy on February 19, 2013 at 8:15 PM

How Sweet to Be An Idiot

/How sweet

Rock on, Congress. Rock. On.

Key West Reader on February 19, 2013 at 8:08 PM

Key West Reader:

From CanuckLand…..**WAVES**:)

canopfor on February 19, 2013 at 8:18 PM

GarandFan on February 19, 2013 at 8:14 PM
Of course Barry loves the French, so he’ll have to get involved. Perhaps we can give him a rifle, flack jacket and helmet and send him over in a helicopter.

Wouldn’t the French just surrender?

KCB on February 19, 2013 at 8:19 PM

KCB on February 19, 2013 at 8:19 PM

Lol, you so bad!! ;-D

Yeah, they’d roll over…

Scrumpy on February 19, 2013 at 8:24 PM

Chrissy, did you checkout Shotgun Biden on the other thread? That old coot is senile! Obama’s personal insurance policy.

KCB on February 19, 2013 at 8:26 PM

KCB on February 19, 2013 at 8:26 PM

I did, he’s such a comedian isn’t he! I lmao ;-D

Scrumpy on February 19, 2013 at 8:31 PM

Evening.

CoffeeLover on February 19, 2013 at 8:31 PM

CoffeeLover on February 19, 2013 at 8:31 PM

Good evening Coffee!! Slow tonight le sigh… ;-)

Scrumpy on February 19, 2013 at 8:33 PM

No, we just want to confiscate everyone’s money to pay for more free stuff. It’s FREE STUFF! Get it? Only the rich people with jobs and homes pay for it.

Philly on February 19, 2013 at 8:33 PM

Yes it is Scrumpy but I always find on HA something to laugh at while all around us is a big mess. Lots of good info too. As in “le sigh” in the French thread!!! lol

CoffeeLover on February 19, 2013 at 8:34 PM

Germany is the richest country in the EU and they have had enough of propping up the ‘losers’…

Can’t say as I blame them.

Germany will put their boot on the throat of France and will make them make deep cuts.

All we have to do is keep an eye on the EU and see our fate down the road.

Scrumpy on February 19, 2013 at 8:36 PM

CoffeeLover, Good evening. Should pick up soon. I hope.

KCB on February 19, 2013 at 8:36 PM

Hiya KCB….hoping all is well in your world.

Sadly Scrumpy I don’t believe those low info voters, certainly not our media and our DC elites apply the necessary critical thinking to look over there to see where we headed.

CoffeeLover on February 19, 2013 at 8:39 PM

Les “grenouilles” sont dans le pot et c’est sur un support mijoter, attendez jusqu’à ébullition!

The “frogs” are in the pot and it’s on a medium simmer, wait till it boils!!!

Scrumpy on February 19, 2013 at 8:11 PM

Right here I thought I was being terribly funny.

Terribly not I guess ;-(

Scrumpy on February 19, 2013 at 8:39 PM

Tough crowd…

(Ducks bottles)

Scrumpy on February 19, 2013 at 8:40 PM

CoffeeLover on February 19, 2013 at 8:39 PM

I couldn’t agree more

KCB on February 19, 2013 at 8:40 PM

CoffeeLover on February 19, 2013 at 8:39 PM

Oh they know, but 0 likes to blame our financial woes on them and not on his self for spending too much!!

Scrumpy on February 19, 2013 at 8:41 PM

Scrumpy on February 19, 2013 at 8:39 PM

i thought you were terribly spot on. I know how to boil a frog.

KCB on February 19, 2013 at 8:42 PM

I think O is doing it on purpose where I don’t think most Americans that voted for O understands it nor do they put it together. It’s the ‘it can’t happen here mentality” too.

CoffeeLover on February 19, 2013 at 8:44 PM

KCB on February 19, 2013 at 8:42 PM

That’s good to know! I like grenouilles legs!! ;-D

Scrumpy on February 19, 2013 at 8:46 PM

Right here I thought I was being terribly funny.

Terribly not I guess ;-(

Scrumpy on February 19, 2013 at 8:39 PM

I thought it was a great point!

CoffeeLover on February 19, 2013 at 8:46 PM

CoffeeLover on February 19, 2013 at 8:44 PM

I think they have been hornswaggled by the media, too darn lazy to check facts and yes, the ‘it can’t happen here mentality” too!

Quite honestly I do NOT for the life of me understand the ‘hero’ worship he gets… le sigh

It’s cult like, and not one thing he does seems to wake them up to the reality that is gonna befall all of us!

Scrumpy on February 19, 2013 at 8:48 PM

Scrumpy I am with you on the “hero worship.” No idea why.

I heard someone (can’t remember who) say today:

1. He’s black
2. He’s cool
3. He’s a liberal

CoffeeLover on February 19, 2013 at 8:51 PM

…can’t they just say they cut the deficit like JugEars does…so no one will have any questions?

KOOLAID2 on February 19, 2013 at 8:54 PM

lol Koolaid

CoffeeLover on February 19, 2013 at 8:55 PM

CoffeeLover on February 19, 2013 at 8:51 PM

1. He is half black, but that isn’t a qualification for pResident.

2. In my eyes he is anything but cool!

3. Uh oh, that’s it! And a progressive lib at that!

Pots’ near boiling!

Scrumpy on February 19, 2013 at 8:55 PM

KOOLAID2 on February 19, 2013 at 8:54 PM

Good idea there KA2!! Good evening :-)

Just speaking the words and people will breathe a le sigh of relief!

Scrumpy on February 19, 2013 at 8:57 PM

Be back later, my dirty dishes are crying out to be cleaned!

Scrumpy on February 19, 2013 at 8:58 PM

1. He is half black, but that isn’t a qualification for pResident.

2. In my eyes he is anything but cool!

3. Uh oh, that’s it! And a progressive lib at that!

Pots’ near boiling!

Scrumpy on February 19, 2013 at 8:55 PM

lol, isn’t that the truth.

CoffeeLover on February 19, 2013 at 8:58 PM

Le Yawn.

Del Dolemonte on February 19, 2013 at 9:09 PM

Funny Quotations About France

“France has neither winter nor summer nor morals. Apart from these drawbacks it is a fine country. France has usually been governed by prostitutes.” —Mark Twain

“I would rather have a German division in front of me than a French one behind me.” —General George S. Patton

“Going to war without France is like going deer hunting without your accordion.” —Norman Schwartzkopf

“We can stand here like the French, or we can do something about it.” —Marge Simpson

“As far as I’m concerned, war always means failure.” —Jacques Chirac, President of France

“As far as France is concerned, you’re right.” —Rush Limbaugh

“The only time France wants us to go to war is when the German Army is sitting in Paris sipping coffee.” —Regis Philbin

“The French are a smallish, monkey-looking bunch and not dressed any better, on average, than the citizens of Baltimore. True, you can sit outside in Paris and drink little cups of coffee, but why this is more stylish than sitting inside and drinking large glasses of whiskey I don’t know.” —P.J O’Rourke (1989)

“You know, the French remind me a little bit of an aging actress of the 1940s who was still trying to dine out on her looks but doesn’t have the face for it.” —John McCain, U.S. Senator from Arizona

“They’ve taken their own precautions against Al Qaeda. To prepare for an attack, each Frenchman is urged to keep duct tape, a white flag, and a three-day supply of mistresses in the house.” —Argus Hamilton

“The only way the French are going in is if we tell them we found truffles in Iraq.” —Dennis Miller

“I would call the French scumbags, but that, of course, would be a disservice to bags filled with scum. I say we invade Iraq, then invade Chirac.” —Dennis Miller

“You know why the French don’t want to bomb Saddam Hussein? Because he hates America, he loves mistresses and wears a beret. He IS French, people.” —Conan O’Brien

“I don’t know why people are surprised that France won’t help us get Saddam out of Iraq. After all, France wouldn’t help us get the Germans out of France!” —Jay Leno

“The last time the French asked for ‘more proof,’ it came marching into Paris under a German flag.” —David Letterman

How many Frenchmen does it take to change a light bulb?
One. He holds the bulb and all of Europe revolves around him.

An old saying: Raise your right hand if you like the French…. Raise both hands if you are French.

Next time there’s a war in Europe, the loser has to keep France.

Still More French Jokes

Q: Why did the French celebrate their World Cup Championship in 2000 so wildly?
A: It was their first time they won anything without the help of the U.S.

Q: What’s the difference between 1943 and 2003?
A. This time around, the Vichy government is telling the German puppets what to do.

Q: What is the first thing the French Army teaches at basic training?
A: How to surrender in at least 10 languages.

Q: What is the most useful thing in the French Army?
A: A rearview mirror, so they can see the war.

Q: Why does Nike like the French Army?
A: Because, in war time, they are the biggest buyers of running shoes.

Q: How do you stop a French tank?
A: Shoot the guy that’s pushing it!

You KNOW I had too!

Scrumpy on February 19, 2013 at 9:13 PM

lol

CoffeeLover on February 19, 2013 at 9:17 PM

Key West Reader on February 19, 2013 at 8:08 PM

Hey!..where you been? Glad to see you post!

Mimzey on February 19, 2013 at 9:19 PM

You joined the EU, you follow their rules. Don’t like them? Leave the EU. Simple.

thebrokenrattle on February 19, 2013 at 9:36 PM

Wouldn’t the French just surrender?

KCB on February 19, 2013 at 8:19 PM

Not to that poofter.

Solaratov on February 19, 2013 at 9:40 PM

Key West Reader on February 19, 2013 at 8:08 PM

Nice to see you.

Stick around.

:-)

Solaratov on February 19, 2013 at 9:40 PM

Scrumpy on February 19, 2013 at 9:13 PM

And God created France…and it was beautiful. It was, in fact, too beautiful. So, to atone for making France so beautiful…God created the French people.

Solaratov on February 19, 2013 at 9:48 PM

France is barely solvent for one reason only, NUCLEAR ENERGY. Did you know they export some? Imagine alternative scenarios. It seriously like everything is free.

Did you know that the great ruinator, Francois the Disasterous, has planned a phaseout. Wait till reality hits the frogs.

John Kettlewell on February 19, 2013 at 10:15 PM

Germany’s Response: Do it or we all go down and frame you as the culprit.

nobar on February 19, 2013 at 10:28 PM

Don’t you know the Germans are regretting now that for all those decades of the Cold War and since, they didn’t bother to build just one tank factory.

It wouldn’t take many to roll over France now, just a dozen or so behind a single Jeep trailing a banner reading, “Fahrvergnügen” . . .

Adjoran on February 20, 2013 at 12:01 AM

With the governmnt on sabatical, I’ve been spending my spare time engraving the names of Marxist targets inside the cavities of my “not government purchased” 200 grain hollow point boat tails.
These rounds are made specifically for reaching out and touching someone at long distance.
I’m actually looking forward to denying the DC Quagmire its daily ration of food and toilet paper.
The tactics necessary to change the minds of worthless Pols are so simple, we almost overlooked them.
A half dozen warehouses and a hlf dozen major roads, clogged with inoperable tractor trailers….the District becomes an ant farm under attack by anteaters.
We Oathkeepers take our position seriousy…I believe moreso than the “blow with the wind Pols” that believe they have more power than my God when it comes to the defense of my Constitution.
May God grant mercy to those that took their oath to Preserve, Protect, and Defend the Constitution under false pretencs.
Si vis pacem, para bellum
II/0317

dirtengineer on February 20, 2013 at 1:53 AM

Berlin and Brussels really must insist that France do its part to keep their eyes on the prize of fiscal sustainability.

LOL. Or else what? A strongly worded letter? A demerit goes into France’s EU file? France will be kicked out of the EU?

Laws, rules, and treaties mean nothing when there is no effective mechanism for enforcement nor consequences for ignoring them.

farsighted on February 20, 2013 at 7:15 AM