Dennis de Jong, MEP: 'Macron is a giant on feet of clay'

17 April 2018

Dennis de Jong, MEP: 'Macron is a giant on feet of clay'

French President Emmanuel Macron's speech before the European Parliament this morning left ordinary people standing out in the cold. Reacting to Macron's performance, SP Euro-MP Dennis de Jong said: ´Macron's huge panoramas are well-known, but he behaves like a giant with feet of clay. While he is creating chaos in France with his diehard neoliberal policies, he expects the European Union to stand by him. France's parliament, the Assemblée Nationale, which is the body closest to the country's citizens, is shoved aside by means of presidential decrees, while the institution which is furthest away from ordinary people, the EU, is supposed to restore democracy. That's completely beyond belief.'

In the SP's view, it is unbridled marketisation that is undermining democracy. “It's only two words, quick to say, but Macron stands for structural reforms, harsh measures to strengthen the competitiveness of the EU,” says De Jong. “He sees trade unions and students' organisations as hindrances. He has turned his back on the people. In France he's seen as a fighter, not as someone who can bring people together. In reality he has written sections of society off.”

His ideas regarding the EU were already known, but in his speech he summarised them once more. “With Macron everything is directed towards strengthening the market,” De Jong continues. “His proposals wouldn't get rid of inequalities in society. They would, on the contrary, widen them. The idea that an end must be put to tax avoidance by multinationals is fine, but coupling that with new EU taxes is no solution. Taxes should be under direct, democratic control and that can be found at national level, but not in relation to the European institutions which are too far away from the member states' citizens. Macron expects the EU to provide solutions which he has failed to do in his own country. That's not going to work.”

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