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http://hotair.com/archives/2013/06/29/french-auditor-you-nee...

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:

“(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.

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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Wait! Stop! The austerity will kill them!

God are liberals idiots.
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Austerity is a Four-Letter French Word
http://www.mauldineconomics.com/frontlinethoughts/austerity-...

A Great Deal If You Can Get It

Yesterday (June 20, 2013) the French called a Grand Summit of businesses, unions, and government officials to address the needed reforms to make France more competitive and its national budget more sustainable. Debt and deficits are high and rising as the country rolls into yet another recession in response to President Hollande’s hard left turn last year. One of the key issues is a very controversial plan to reform pensions.

Stratfor notes:

France spends roughly 12.5 percent of its gross domestic product on pensions, more than most almost any other Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development member. (For reference, Germany spends about 11.4 percent of its GDP on pensions, and Japan spends roughly 8.7 percent.)

[Note: elsewhere we find that France has a comprehensive social security (sécurité sociale) system covering healthcare, injuries at work, family allowances, unemployment insurance, and old age (pensions), invalidity and death benefits. France spends more on ‘welfare' than almost any other EU country: over 30 per cent of GDP as a total entitlement cost. As a reference, that would be about $5 trillion in the US.]

The fact that an increasingly larger proportion of France's population qualifies for pensions factors into the debate. In 1975, there were 31 workers paying contributions for every 10 retirees; today, there are 14 workers paying contributions for every 10 retirees. As the baby boomers from the 1950s and 1960s begin to retire in the next decade, the pressure on France's coffers will grow substantially. The deficit of the French pension system is projected to double between 2010 and 2020, when it will exceed 20 billion euros.

It is hard for Americans to understand just how much it costs to support the average French worker (or to be self-employed). From Paris Voice:

Total social security revenue is around €200 billion per year and the social security budget is higher than the gross national product (GNP), i.e. social security costs more than the value of what the country produces. Not surprisingly, social security benefits are among the highest in the EU. Total contributions per employee (too around 15 funds) average around 60 per cent of gross pay, some 60 per cent of what is paid by employers (an impediment to hiring staff). The self-employed must pay the full amount (an impediment to self-employment!) However, with the exception of sickness benefits, social security benefits aren't taxed; indeed they're deducted from your taxable income. Equally unsurprisingly, the public has been highly resistant to any change that might reduce benefits, while employers are pushing to have their contributions lowered.

And of course, almost the first thing that Monsieur Hollande did when he took office last year was to return the retirement age at which you qualify for a pension back to age 60 from the extremely controversial 62 that his predecessor, Sarkozy, had barely managed to push it to. Sarkozy’s “reforms” were greeted with massive protests, and Hollande used them to engineer a sweeping election victory for the Socialists. (I put “reforms” in quotes because nowhere else would a retirement age of 62 be seen as draconian, nor would the rest of the changes Sarkozy pushed through.)

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The French deserve what they eventually will get: complete collapse.
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PA is a French colony.
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PA is a French colony
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I always thought it was more a French colonic
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PA is a French colony
____________________________

I always thought it was more a French colonic
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We can agree it's both dark and smelly can't we?
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