French auditor: You need to slash spending, or no way is economic growth happening

posted at 9:31 am on June 29, 2013 by Erika Johnsen

Things are hanging together by a thread for Socialist President Francois Hollande over in France — and even just a thread might be a tad too generous. He’s been in office for barely a year, during which time his popularity has plummeted as unemployment hovers around 11 percent and the economy lingers in recession territory (the government has optimistically predicted a whopping 0.1 percent growth rate for the year, but we all know how those predictions go).

Earlier this year, the EU extended France’s deadline by which they need to bring their public deficit below three percent of GDP by two years, but France’s public-sector spending currently accounts for 56 percent of their GDP and suggestions for reform are not going over at well with much of the French populace. Hollande’s government is looking to state and local authority budgets as one of their biggest means of reducing the deficit, but France’s national auditor recently warned that that’s not going to be enough to get them back on track — not nearly enough. Via the BBC:

The Cour des Comptes said the deficit is on course to exceed the government’s 3.7% target due to lower tax receipts.

A cut in the “weight of public spending seems more necessary than ever”, the quasi-judicial body said in a report. …

“(France’s) deficits remain higher than the eurozone and European Union average. There must be no slackening in this effort and the focus from now on must be on spending,” the body said.

Trimming state aid and local authority budgets “can only be temporary,” the auditor said.

It added: “Structural reforms must be put in place from today to ensure the lasting recovery of public finances.”

No kidding. All of the soak-the-rich and pitiful stopgap measures the government is flirting with, instead of attempting a real, substantive overhaul of their bloated state bureaucracy and unsustainable budgets, are never going to be enough — and their economy will keep suffering until they figure that out.


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It’s the first sign of the Apocalypse when France ledes the world in economic common sense.

locomotivebreath1901 on June 29, 2013 at 9:36 AM

A harbringer of things to come in the USA.
I’m seriously looking for a place to become an “Expat”
Wasn’t it Margaret Thatcher that said, “Socialism works well until you run out of other people’s money.” ?

Art on June 29, 2013 at 9:39 AM

Blasphemy! Doesn’t he know that massive government spending is the only way to stimulate an economy?

backwoods conservative on June 29, 2013 at 9:44 AM

If Obama hears this, he’ll do the exact opposite.

It’s a sad day when the French get something right and an American president can’t.

Liam on June 29, 2013 at 9:44 AM

Blasphemy! Doesn’t he know that massive government spending is the only way to stimulate an economy?

backwoods conservative on June 29, 2013 at 9:44 AM

An unemployment. Can’t forget unemployment. I know, because Nancy Pelosi told me so!

Liam on June 29, 2013 at 9:45 AM

Populism doesn’t work, it seems.

thebrokenrattle on June 29, 2013 at 9:46 AM

The French are toast.

fogw on June 29, 2013 at 9:48 AM

The French are toast.

fogw on June 29, 2013 at 9:48 AM

At the rate we’re going, they’ll outlast us.

Liam on June 29, 2013 at 9:50 AM

I’ll wait to see what kind of “structural reforms” get enacted before claiming France got something right.

Flange on June 29, 2013 at 9:51 AM

I’ll wait to see what kind of “structural reforms” get enacted before claiming France got something right.

Flange on June 29, 2013 at 9:51 AM

The French sound like they’re talking about a genuine. What do we get? “Immigration reform.”

Liam on June 29, 2013 at 9:53 AM

The French are toast.

fogw on June 29, 2013 at 9:48 AM

I see what you did there. French toast, scrambled eggs, and sausage, yum.:-)

cheers

eon

eon on June 29, 2013 at 9:54 AM

Vraiment?

How does one say “no, sh*t, Sherlock” en français?

coldwarrior on June 29, 2013 at 9:55 AM

He better talk this over with Big O and Paul Krugman before he gets in over his head. Look at all the good deficit spending has done for us here in the good ole’ USA. As soon as I find someone with a job Erika can interview them. Hope I find one before amnesty sets in so they can speak English.

Herb on June 29, 2013 at 9:57 AM

Vraiment?

How does one say “no, sh*t, Sherlock” en français?

coldwarrior on June 29, 2013 at 9:55 AM

“No sh*t, Sherlock,” pretty much covers it, an any language.

Liam on June 29, 2013 at 9:57 AM

The Frogs will always party like it’s 1789, 1869, 1913 or 1939.

The last time they had any sense of self-discipline is when Corsican Bonaparte led them.

viking01 on June 29, 2013 at 9:59 AM

(Non merde, Sherlock)

viking01 on June 29, 2013 at 10:00 AM

… though the Frogs likely would fancify it to Sherloque.

viking01 on June 29, 2013 at 10:01 AM

The French are toast.

fogw on June 29, 2013 at 9:48 AM

The French definitely are pain perdú (lost bread) in more ways than one.

viking01 on June 29, 2013 at 10:03 AM

Scot Gaelic:

Nach eil buachar, Sherlock.

Liam on June 29, 2013 at 10:04 AM

I’ll wait to see what kind of “structural reforms” get enacted before claiming France got something right.

Flange on June 29, 2013 at 9:51 AM

Exactly. French socialists like Hollande and his ilk are at least as good at ignoring facts as our domestic brand. Just because an economist, or an entire brigade of them, have given them this wake-up call is no guarantee that they’ll do anything except what their dogma demands.

In fact, if they run true to form, they’ll probably emulate The One and double down their bets. To do otherwise would be an admission of error, in their minds, and that just isn’t going to happen. “We are right, the doctrine is correct, and the argument is closed!” is the usual response, and I don’t expect anything different this time.

What I am expecting is a replay of the summer of 1968. Complete to the Gardes Mobiles dodging paving bricks. If you don’t believe me, look at Greece, Spain, etc.

Of course, the original “soixante-huitards” are mostly in the government, now. It will be interesting to see the looks on their faces when they’re on the receiving end, so to speak.

clear ether

eon

eon on June 29, 2013 at 10:04 AM

The French sound like they’re talking about a genuine. What do we get? “Immigration reform.”

Liam on June 29, 2013 at 9:53 AM

I’m not claiming our approach right now is any better, but Hollande was elected not to long ago on some pretty hard core spending promises. His government wants to spend and the majority of French that voted for him want it too. And France could probably use some “immigration reform” right about now also, look how well having million of unassimilated foreigners has worked for France.

Flange on June 29, 2013 at 10:10 AM

Flange on June 29, 2013 at 10:10 AM

I know. I was being facetious more than I was trying to be factual.

When Hollande got elected on a promise to raise income taxes to 75%, I ’bout fell out my chair. I thought at first he was talking like a man with a paper a**hole. Then he did it!

When you can get your biggest money-holders to move to Russia for a better life, you’ve done something wrong.

Liam on June 29, 2013 at 10:17 AM

bayam! Roll out of bed and tell us why this guy is lying.

Oh, and bring your inflatable Paul Krugman doll along to tell you what to think.

Del Dolemonte on June 29, 2013 at 10:22 AM

Of course, the original “soixante-huitards” are mostly in the government, now. It will be interesting to see the looks on their faces when they’re on the receiving end, so to speak.

clear ether

eon

eon on June 29, 2013 at 10:04 AM

Dreaming. Once converted to sheeple, there is no going back. Until true starvation sets in. (Or someone turns off the cell towers)

WryTrvllr on June 29, 2013 at 10:23 AM

When you can get your biggest money-holders to move to Russia for a better life, you’ve done something wrong.

Liam on June 29, 2013 at 10:17 AM

As has been said a few times around here, these are some bizarre times.

eon on June 29, 2013 at 10:04 AM

They may as well double down, go for broke as it were. They’re already going down, maybe some unrelated event (such as war or the emergence of a scapegoat) might save them and buy them some time.

Flange on June 29, 2013 at 10:26 AM

A cut in the “weight of public spending seems more necessary than ever”, the quasi-judicial body said in a report. …

In other news, the sun rose in the east this morning.

RadClown on June 29, 2013 at 10:27 AM

Shocker!

gophergirl on June 29, 2013 at 10:28 AM

As has been said a few times around here, these are some bizarre times.

Flange on June 29, 2013 at 10:26 AM

That old Chinese curse works. All too well! LOL

Liam on June 29, 2013 at 10:28 AM

Sarkozy – “miss me yet?”

22044 on June 29, 2013 at 10:35 AM

No kidding. All of the soak-the-rich and pitiful stopgap measures the government is flirting with, instead of attempting a real, substantive overhaul of their bloated state bureaucracy and unsustainable budgets, are never going to be enough — and their economy will keep suffering until they figure that out.

Socialists have hard time with reality. Always have, always will. Their ideology does not work.

dogsoldier on June 29, 2013 at 10:39 AM

That old Chinese curse works. All too well! LOL

Liam on June 29, 2013 at 10:28 AM

I think they used the word “interesting.” But yeah it seems like it does!

dogsoldier on June 29, 2013 at 10:40 AM

Socialists have hard time with reality. Always have, always will. Their ideology does not work.

dogsoldier on June 29, 2013 at 10:39 AM

Intelligent people see the world as it is, and work from there.

Liberals and other socialists see the world as they demand it to be, and do everything to make reality to conform to their dreams.

What results is a nightmare for everyone else.

Liam on June 29, 2013 at 10:44 AM

They will not listen to the auditor. That poor man.

What is Dartmouth’s motto again?

Vox Climatis Desirato?

I cheated and didn’t trust memory:

Vox clamantis in deserto.

Applies to most of you guys, too.

IlikedAUH2O on June 29, 2013 at 11:08 AM

Vox Climatis Desirato?

IlikedAUH2O on June 29, 2013 at 11:08 AM

I can translate that one! It means, “She demands another and you better not disappoint her!”

Liam on June 29, 2013 at 11:13 AM

If Obama hears this, he’ll do the exact opposite.

It’s a sad day when the French get something right and an American president can’t.

Liam on June 29, 2013 at 9:44 AM

Obama does not want to get it right – his goal is to collapse the system to a point where the US has it’s own French revolution. Then Obama will be crowned King for all time….let’s see how long a King Obama would last……

redguy on June 29, 2013 at 11:15 AM

Obama does not want to get it right – his goal is to collapse the system to a point where the US has it’s own French revolution. Then Obama will be crowned King for all time….let’s see how long a King Obama would last……

redguy on June 29, 2013 at 11:15 AM

Somehow, I tend to think he’d have a hard time getting there in the first place.

Liam on June 29, 2013 at 11:17 AM

le loser.

albill on June 29, 2013 at 11:18 AM

The winds of change…only the States with conservative fiscal policies thrive, only the nations that cut government thrive.

The US and the EU will continue to shrivel in importance if they don’t do it too.

Should be “interesting times” as the Chinese curse puts it.

PattyJ on June 29, 2013 at 11:21 AM

redguy on June 29, 2013 at 11:15 AM

I think you’re half right. But I think he’s going to go full Panda. A black and white character that eats, shoots and leaves.

Flange on June 29, 2013 at 11:21 AM

SMEAR

I don’t know what this could have had to do with the United States. Why a black lady on TV said that the WH jobs plans would have everyone working if only congress would give him the money he asked for.

Our president is allegedly the son of a Harvard educated economist who went back to Kenya and tripled their GDP in a few years while being the best father and husband anyone ever had.

His other father figure was a citadel of love for free enterprise and our economic system.

His Indonesian father was a self made millionaire and loved America.

Finally, it is rumored that his college was paid by the Saudis who have only the best wishes for Christians the United States and low oil prices.

IlikedAUH2O on June 29, 2013 at 11:31 AM

I can translate that one! It means, “She demands another and you better not disappoint her!”

Liam on June 29, 2013 at 11:13 AM

Yes, I knew women who were impressed with twice.

My first wife got wowed after 10 or 11 in six or eight hours.

Now I am on a quarterly or semi-annual plan.

IlikedAUH2O on June 29, 2013 at 11:35 AM

Economists of accross the spectrum agree. The problem is that france’s government is only 56% of the economy. Once it gets to the 110-120% all will be well. [/0bama]

jukin3 on June 29, 2013 at 11:36 AM

Strange. I thought that liberal thinking was that Government spending encourages economic growth…

unclesmrgol on June 29, 2013 at 11:36 AM

No kidding. All of the soak-the-rich and pitiful stopgap measures the government is flirting with, instead of attempting a real, substantive overhaul of their bloated state bureaucracy and unsustainable budgets, are never going to be enough — and their economy will keep suffering until they figure that out.

Oh….Here I thought you were writing about California.

workingclass artist on June 29, 2013 at 11:38 AM

Sarkozy – “miss me yet?”

22044 on June 29, 2013 at 10:35 AM

HA!

workingclass artist on June 29, 2013 at 11:40 AM

My first wife got wowed after 10 or 11 in six or eight hours.

IlikedAUH2O on June 29, 2013 at 11:35 AM

She needed that long?

My kids told me that one of the guys my ex planned to marry was stupid enough to ask who was the best lover she ever had (no man should ever be so lame and insecure as to ask that question).

When she told him, “My ex husband,” he was so unhappy he didn’t play with her for a month.

I’m on the Whenever Plan and also the Take Me As I Come ‘Cause I Can’t Stay Long Plan. I like my liberty too much. No woman is going to say she loves my place, then move in and try changing everything. LOL

Liam on June 29, 2013 at 11:56 AM

Tsk, tsk, tsk. Karl Marx is looking up at Francois from hell right now and he’s not smiling. Well, screaming and writhing in pain of course, but also not very happy with this minion.

onomo on June 29, 2013 at 12:24 PM

Racism obviously involved here.

Jackalope on June 29, 2013 at 12:25 PM

My boss has a saying: If you keep doing what you’ve been doing, you’ll keep getting what you’ve been getting. Seems obvious, but leftists always think next time will be the exception. And somehow voters believe them.

Socratease on June 29, 2013 at 12:33 PM

Instead of cutting the “bloated state bureaucracy” we all know they will instead cut farm subsidies, because the farmers will close down Paris with slow cruises into town on tractors and other such equipment, or truck fuel tax breaks, because truckers will do the same. Its a dead end though– as Paris is learning from the Laffer Curve effect, raising tax rates cuts revenues.

Democrats here, who in any dispute over taxes always try to pretend the Laffer Curve effect doesn’t exist, should take note: if you want economic growth (and at some point, even Democrats will want that to happen!) the only way to do it is reduce the burden of government!

MTF on June 29, 2013 at 12:40 PM

A harbringer of things to come in the USA.
I’m seriously looking for a place to become an “Expat”
Wasn’t it Margaret Thatcher that said, “Socialism works well until you run out of other people’s money.” ?

Art on June 29, 2013 at 9:39 AM

I am looking at either Australia or Costa Rica if I have to, although Texas leaving the union is my first choice. :) :) :)

Theophile on June 29, 2013 at 1:08 PM

The Cour des Comptes said the deficit is on course to exceed the government’s 3.7% target due to lower tax receipts.

You don’t say? Once again, Art Laffer is proven right.

Steve Eggleston on June 29, 2013 at 1:15 PM

At the rate we’re going, they’ll outlast us.

Liam on June 29, 2013 at 9:50 AM

They’re further along with their illegal immigration problem, and those illegal immigrants won’t be demanding just a portion of France.

Steve Eggleston on June 29, 2013 at 1:17 PM

I’m not wild about Jim Kramer or his show Mad Money — I don’t think you can an evaluate a stock in 1.7 seconds — but occasionally he says something that’s right on target.

Recently he discussed the lack of new small businesses. Large companies have such advantages in the marketplace that it’s become extremely difficult for new start-ups to get going in many sectors.

Kramer is a Democrat, and because of that, he didn’t sufficiently lay the blame for that on Obama. But this is the heart-and-soul of Obamanomics and the liberal agenda. You create so much regulation and give plaintiffs so many rights that only large organizations can afford to operate. Big Business may grumble about Obama, and they do occur costs; but they also understand how government intervention shields them from new competition.

The whole of the liberal agenda is to favor preferred constituencies, from lawyers to blacks to environmentalists, and centralize business activity in fewer and fewer hands. Our freedoms, both those of the economy and of expression, are curtailed.

bobs1196 on June 29, 2013 at 1:19 PM

The Frogs will always party like it’s 1789, 1869, 1913 or 1939.

The last time they had any sense of self-discipline is when Corsican Bonaparte led them.

viking01 on June 29, 2013 at 9:59 AM

And that fell apart fast enough in the Russian winter.

Steve Eggleston on June 29, 2013 at 1:21 PM

Trimming state aid and local authority budgets “can only be temporary,” the auditor said.

Wrong – it must be permanent (and deep). Every level of bureaucracy money passes through causes more of it to get lost in the bureaucratic shuffle. That’s why “shared revenue” doesn’t work even in locales where it hasn’t degenerated into mutual pork-barrel back-scratching.

Steve Eggleston on June 29, 2013 at 1:31 PM

as to America, how many rungs have we slipped in the economic freedom index since 0bama became king?

2011 it was 9. I have to believe that we slipped 3-5 more in 2012. 2013 is going to be a chart dropper with killing the energy supply business.

jukin3 on June 29, 2013 at 3:19 PM

France’s public-sector spending currently accounts for 56 percent of their GDP.

That’s because the middle class drives the economy.

The Cour des Comptes said the deficit is on course to exceed the government’s 3.7% target due to lower tax receipts.

Their getting less money from taxes because so many are out of work. In France, there are now 3.2 million unemployed, more than at any time since the country began keeping records in 1996.

“(France’s) deficits remain higher than the eurozone and European Union average.

This is proof of the failure of austerity but Europeans are beginning to wake up to the failure of austerity.

Remember that Carmen Reinhart and Kenneth Rogoff’s 2010 debt study inspires austerity around the world, but grad student Thomas Herndon debunks the results.

Now its widely know that the way to stimulate the economy is to invest in invest in infrastructure to put more people back to work.

Which will also increase tax revenue and etc.

JustTheFacts on June 29, 2013 at 3:28 PM

True austerity was never tried after the 2008 crash. Not in Europe, and not in the United States.

Temporary cuts to the rate of spending growth is not austerity. Repealing Social Security and Medicare is austerity.

Revenant on June 29, 2013 at 4:10 PM

French auditor: You need to slash spending, or no way is economic growth happening

…and they learned that?

KOOLAID2 on June 29, 2013 at 4:41 PM

JustTheFacts on June 29, 2013 at 3:28 PM

Ah, the hilarity of the True Obama believers.

They can actually spout this:

This is proof of the failure of austerity but Europeans are beginning to wake up to the failure of austerity.

While saying this:

France’s public-sector spending currently accounts for 56 percent of their GDP.

And of course we have this old dodge:

Now its widely know that the way to stimulate the economy is to invest in invest in infrastructure to put more people back to work.

Which is why JustTheFacts and the Obama Party spend billions of dollars annually paying people to get drunk.

The way to call the Obama Party’s bluff on these lies is simple; if they want infrastructure projects, they can build them with labor from people on welfare and unemployment. You want your food stamps and Obamaphones, you show up at the work site and dig ditches for eight hours.

Who wants to bet the screaming idiot JustTheFacts opposes that?

northdallasthirty on June 29, 2013 at 5:07 PM

The way to call the Obama Party’s bluff on these lies is simple; if they want infrastructure projects, they can build them with labor from people on welfare and unemployment. You want your food stamps and Obamaphones, you show up at the work site and dig ditches for eight hours.

northdallasthirty on June 29, 2013 at 5:07 PM

This is also the way to make the welfare rolls shrink like a brain exposed to liberal propaganda.

MelonCollie on June 30, 2013 at 12:49 PM

The way to call the Obama Party’s bluff on these lies is simple; if they want infrastructure projects, they can build them with labor from people on welfare and unemployment. You want your food stamps and Obamaphones, you show up at the work site and dig ditches for eight hours.

northdallasthirty on June 29, 2013 at 5:07 PM

I’m not driving over any bridge that was built by people who aren’t smart enough to find a job or stay off welfare.

And no, this comment is not racist. I couldn’t care less what color the people who built the bridge I’m about to drive over are. I care that they’re qualified to build it.

runawayyyy on July 1, 2013 at 9:12 AM