For John, BLUF: A too quick dismissal of this French protest movement would lead to missing some important political points. Nothing to see here; just move along.
From The New English Review, by Author Erik Svane, January 2019 edition.
Here is the start:
This unsettled populace is not just some creation of Donald J Trump. Rather, it is the unsettledness the has given us President Trump. There is a segment of the voters, across the West, that is restless. They would go along with the Gleichschaltung if the bien-pensant didn't seem to be stepping on them.The more laws and restrictions there are,Not a single media report I have read or seen about the Yellow Vest demonstrations in Paris and across France has not been slanted by Fake News. The problem is that crucial information has been omitted.
The poorer people become
The more rules and regulations,
The more thieves and robbers.
It is not wrong to say that the demonstrations were caused by the government's decision to raise gas prices. But that view seems to pit two more or less equal sides against each other—people (responsible government officials) seeing the necessities of taxes in life versus carefree people (common citizens) unconcerned with the sacrifices that life entails and who go overboard with their protests.
What is missing from most all of the coverage of this crisis in France is that this is just one of several draconian measures dating back half a year, i.e., the recent tax hike that sparked the wave of protests was the proverbial straw that broke the camel's back.
For the past four to five months, the nation's drivers and motorcycle riders have been growing increasingly irate at les sangsues (bloodsuckers) in the French government who seem to do little else, road-security-wise, but double down on bringing more and more gratuitous oppression upon their necks and saddling them with more and more unwarranted fines and costs.
In fact, the imposition of ever harsher rules has been going on for the past decade and a half or so—whether the government was on the right or on the left—and that is why the choice of garb, les gilets jaunes (the yellow jackets), by the demonstrators is particularly ironic.
The 2008 law (under the presidency of Nicolas Sarkozy) that requires the presence of high-visibility vests (gilets de haute visibilité) aka security vests (gilets de sécurité) in every vehicle—hardly an unreasonable rule, for sure, as similar ones exist throughout the continent—was just another example of the myriad of evermore-onerous directives for car and motorcycle owners over the past 15 years, and so the government, in effect, provided the 2018 rebels with their "uniforms."
Hat tip to the InstaPundit.
Regards — Cliff