Thursday, February 22

Macron, a chameleon president in France

In front of the “hyperpresident” who was the conservative Nicholas Sarkozy and the “normal president” who wanted to be the socialist Francois Hollande, Emmanuel Macron warned that he wanted “Jupiterian” (Jupiter was the king of the Roman Gods), a way of saying that from his Olympus he understood the exercise of power in an absolutely vertical way. And that’s how his presidency has been: personalistic and distant, which for many of his detractors translates into arrogant.

But it was the newspaper ‘Le Monde’ who also baptized it as andhe “president chameleon” for its ability to change, to adapt and readapt its policies, in an exercise in pragmatism by someone who came to power declaring himself “neither left nor right”, just an eEuropean and reformist convinced. If you had to find an equivalent, perhaps it would be the former British Prime Minister, Tony Blair, although he never left the Labor Party and Macron did the socialist, with which he entered politics and became Hollande’s economy minister.

A squad of elites

It defends a polyhedral management, devoid of ideology, based solely on the effectiveness of public policies and although it has combined more unpopular measures, such as the abolition of wealth taxwith other more social ones such as aid to the most vulnerable – the so-called ‘Macron premium’ – and the rise in the minimum wage, has never managed to get rid of the label of “president of the rich”. His bourgeois origins in the city of Amiens, his exquisite training at the exclusive lENA (the National School of Administration), or his time at the Rothschild finance bank they give him away as the perfect picture of the elites.

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His administration has been marked by multiple crises:he long mobilizations of the ‘yellow vests’the pandemic of covid and the war of Ukraine. The vest protests, which began in October 2018 as a movement in the countryside and the periphery of the cities against the increase in fuel prices and the loss of purchasing power, quickly took over the cities. They were suppressed with vpolice violence but Macron had to give up raising the tax on diesel and lowered the personal income tax for the lowest salariesyes

Even so, only the outbreak of the covid epidemic in March 2020 extinguished the last lights of the protest. A pandemic that in France has added left more than 140,000 dead and that led the head of the Elysee to order a llong closure of restaurants and leisure establishments and extensive curfews. He was also one of the European leaders who first imposed mandatory vaccination certificatebut that same firmness was used in disbursing 100,000 million euros in the social shield to deal with the economic ravages of the virus.

“Whatever it takes,” he said then. The balance is positive. The country has recovered pre-pandemic economic levels and the phoop has shrunk during his tenure years from 9.5% to 7.4% (lowest level in 15 years. The cap imposed on the price of energy has allowed him to contain the inflation by 4.5%. Some results that, however, are applauded more abroad than at home.

Mediation with Russia

“I came to power with a vitality that I hope to continue to have and with the will to shake the system”, he stated in an interview last December. Vitality and speed at the same time, as Macron starred in a meteoric rise to heights. From being an unknown until Hollande appointed him Economy Minister in 2014 to conquering the Elysee in 2017 and at only 39 years old, becoming the youngest head of state France has ever had.

A promotion that he also made outside the parties, at the head of a citizen movement founded only a year before, in March (EM), an acronym that coincides with those of his name and surname. Is it just a coincidence or is it part of your personalism when it comes to exercising power?

Ismart, prepared and brilliant, is also a good speaker. It is known and it is liked provocativewhich has led him to pronounce some outbursts that have reinforced his image of arrogant president far from reality, speaking, for example, of “the people who are nothing”, of the “lazy” refractory to all reforms and of the unemployed who want work “just across the street”. Words that have distanced him from the popular classes and from a part of the left.

your love story

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Sincere or not, Macron has admitted that he has made “mistakes”, but nothing stops him when it comes to his convictions. His personal life attests to this. He fell in love at the age of 16 with his French and theater teacher, Brigitte Trogneaux, a married woman 24 years older and the mother of three teenage children like him. Her parents sent him to Paris to break that forbidden and mutual love but he promised her that she would come back and they would get married.

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They did it in 2007 and today they are a perfect and discreet family: the couple, her three children and the seven grandchildren to whom the president acts as a grandfather. From her absolute discretion, Brigitte is always at the president’s side, as wife and adviser. He is 44 years old and she is 68, they have had to endure all kinds of hoaxes. But his is a story that breaks molds. Like his presidency.

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