Germán Gorraiz: Macron and invertebrate France

publicerad 10 juli 2023
Emmanuel Macron, 2017. Foto: Remi Jouan. Licens: CC BY 4.0
Emmanuel Macron, 2017.

The outbreak of the Covid pandemic, coupled with the Ukrainian conflict, revealed the worrying servility of Western countries to the dictates of the WHO and the US, which resulted in the loss of decision-making power of European institutions and their total subordination to the geopolitical dictates of the US, leaving France as an irrelevant power in the new geopolitical cartography of Cold War 2.0.

Already at the end of his term in office, Macron may have woken up to an unexpected black swan that could put an end to his days of wine and roses at the Elysée. The term black swan designates an “unexpected and unpredictable event that produces large-scale consequences and can only be explained a posteriori”.

Thus, the death of Nahel, a 17-year-old with no police record, at the hands of the police during a traffic stop in Nanterre, described by Macron as “inexplicable and unacceptable”, was the trigger for a new explosion of violence in the banlieues of France’s big cities, repeating the violent events of 2005 and reminding the world of the persistence of “France inverted”.

The violent events of 2005 have been the trigger for a new explosion of violence in the banlieues of France’s big cities, reminding the world of the persistence of “invertebrate France” as a dystopia in 21st century Europe.

A dystopia would be “a negative utopia where reality takes place in terms antagonistic to those of an ideal society” and is set in closed or claustrophobic environments and the banlieue would be a dystopian scenario of a real (non-fictional) nature.

The X-ray of the inhabitants of the banlieue would also outline a dystopian scenario, with large proportions of the population living below the poverty line and with unemployment rates well above the national average, a rate that would increase among those under 25 years of age.

This would have the collateral effects of marginality, a black economy and rising crime rates, fuelled by the lack of investment in public services and the overcrowding of part of the population in obsolete blocks of flats built in the 1960s.

On the other hand, the violent riots of 2005 in the banlieues of the main French cities, inhabited mainly by immigrants and black French people, had set off alarm bells in the French establishment.

Thus, in the name of sacrosanct state security, it was decided that the principle of the inviolability (habeas corpus) of individuals would henceforth sleep in the limbo of dead laws and that the principle of “presumption of guilt” would remain an indelible stigma in the French security forces instead of the original “presumption of innocence”.

This would be reflected in the brutality and racial contempt exuded by police interventions in the banlieues of France’s big cities, which would be constituent elements of the so-called “negative perfection”, a term used by the novelist Martin Amis to designate “the obscene justification of the use of extreme, massive and premeditated cruelty by a supposedly ideal state”.

The suburbs of Paris and France’s big cities have thus become an explosive cocktail whose ingredients are poor management of multiculturalism; ethnic tensions between the French and immigrants of different races, cultures and religions; the inadequacy of the welfare state; rampant unemployment rates and bleeding poverty rates.

This, together with police brutality, would confirm the crisis of the current French model of integration by allowing the emergence of a new urban cartography totally resistant to the dictates of the French establishment and which would make up the “new invertebrate France”.

By Germán Gorraiz, political analyst


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