Monday, February 27, 2006

France Defends Its Own Industries While Wanting Free Trade Elsewhere


By Elaine Meinel Supkis

Here is an amusing example of a country that doesn't cave into "free traders". France. Once again, they decide national control is more important than selling everything off and firing French workers.

From Reuters:
Gaz de France (GAZ.PA) and Suezoutlined a deal to create Europe's second largest energy utility on Monday in a government-brokered move seen as a lightning French response to designs on Suez by Italy's Enel.

A statement issued by both companies after a weekend of intense political and boardroom activity sketched out a ``merger of equals'' that will see Gaz de France privatized with the state left holding a blocking minority and Enel shut out of Suez.

Further details of the deal -- including the politically crucial question of which company will have the upper hand in the new 72 billion euro combination -- were left vague ahead of talks between the French government and skeptical unions.
Of course, the unions are skeptical. Across the globe, the free traders and international bankers are desperate to break all unions, destroy the power of all workers to fight for wages and benefits. We are all supposed to degrade our condition so we are all peasants or slaves.

Capital must have total freedom while labor have only slavery. This is exactly what the 1984 doublespeak motto, "Slavery is Freedom" is all about. Money, which has no living beings attached, must be free but in order for it to exist, it must chain living humans into penury and perpetual labor or it loses value.

As Marx noted, labor=value. And the capitalists working with financial entities know their money is nothing but worthless paper unless it can harness the labor of billions and "grow".
Finance Minister Thierry Breton and the heads of the two companies were holding talks with trade unions on Monday morning to try to break down their opposition.
The unions are rightfully fearful of any merger, even one designed to "save" the energy company from foreign control. This is because all mergers=people losing jobs. Since mergers involve exchanges of money, this has to be paid for and the only method is via labor concessions.
Plans for the alliance have angered Italy and could alarm the European Commission because of concerns that France's stated policy of ``economic patriotism'' goes against the spirit of free movement of capital.

The merger plan is widely seen as a defensive mechanism to stave off any takeover bid by Enel, although French officials deny building a fortress against foreign takeovers.
France is part of the European Union and uses the euro. Yet they are understandably nervous of losing all control of their own country yet they will happily buy similar things in the USA or neighbors like Belgium, in Europe. These vacillations are typical of all "free traders" who want freedom to invade other people's systems but want to do it from a fortress of solitude.

Like Japan. This is 100% what Japan is all about. Securely locking their own borders while exploiting free trade in other countries. Even after years of detailing this, the USA still is unable to retaliate even slightly because the red ink caused by Japan and now China's trade surplusses means we can't financially retaliate except via one method only: closing our ports!

Instead of handing them over to the Chinese and the UAE.

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