French Press Review 26 August 2010
Financial daily Les Echos is upbeat this morning as it delivers the good news that unemployment figures in France are down. It says 14,400 fewer people were out of work in July in relation to the previous month and that, it says, is a reason for the government to rejoice.
Left-leaning Libération strikes a less optimistic tone saying that the reality beneath the figures was not as rosy as the government would have us believe. It says they were most likely part of a broader upward trend and that France was still in the grip of mass unemployment. It also offers us the caveat that it could be as a result of an increase of short term contracts and that unemployment in the over 50s was still on the rise.
Meanwhile our electronic brethren over at website Rue 89 take a sideways look at French internal politics with a piece on the 2011 leadership contest within the socialist opposition. It examines the potential candidates and says that there is still a strong belief within the left that Ségolène Royal is the strongest contender. But if she could not pull it off in the last round of elections the question remains as to why she would fare any better second time round?
Le Monde also has a piece on leadership within the opposition. It says that the current chief of the International Monetary Fund Dominique Strauss-Kahn would be the strongest candidate in a face-off against Sarkozy. Ségolène, it says, would fare less well.
Right-leaning Le Figaro also looks at political infighting but this time not in France but across the channel in the UK. It speaks in biblical terms about a blood feud between brothers David and Ed Miliband for the leadership of the Labour Party. It explains that the two agreed that they would not let things get personal, but as the contest draws closer who knows if they’ll keep their word.
Le Monde carries a piece about the nature of the slightly off-kilter relationship between the French President and his Prime Minister Francois Fillon. But whilst Fillion rides high in the opinion polls Sarkozy is at an all time low. The paper looks at who does what and how that could pan out in a government reshuffle.
And on a more conciliatory note, Libération takes a look at the literary rentrée and the publication of hundreds of new books as the French return from their holidays and settle down to some serious reading. Perhaps spelling the end of the holiday period for some, it is no doubt good news for book lovers.
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