In France, the pension is under attack. The attack on the later end of life is so massive that the French paralyze the country.
It is surprising that in Germany it is hardly reported, considering the size. On the other hand, media are in the hands of less wealthy families and loyal state court reporters. It seems as if the German election cattle should not be brought up with ideas. In Germany there is finally a discussion about raising the retirement age to 70, in France the country is paralysed if the same is raised to 64.
Russian TV is reporting and maybe it helps to look at the general strike in France with different eyes.
In France, the General strike against the pension reform. The issue affects all French people, because in the future they will have to work longer and receive less pension than today’s French pensioners.
On 11 December, it was not President Macron but Prime Minister Edouard Philippe who officially presented the most important provisions of the Reform. The measure is inevitable, and already strongly. If nothing is done, the pension fund deficit in France could rise to 17 billion euros by 2025.
After the recent protests, when 1.5 million people took to the streets in cities across the country, some things have been toned down, but overall the nature of the Reform has not changed.
The pension system in France will remain in solidarity. That is, those who work pay for those who are already retired. The existing system of pension benefits and preferences for each of the 42 occupational groups will be completely abolished. A” universal " pension system is introduced in which pension contributions are converted into points. The industry in which the employee works no longer plays a role. The amount of the pension depends on the number of collected points. Those who earn more pay more and get more. A new concept, the retirement age should be 64 years for men and women alike. If you retire before the age of 64, the pension will be significantly lower as the value of each point in euros will be reduced. This means that in practice the retirement age increases from 62 to 64 years. In addition, certain categories of workers, such as railwaymen, who are now retiring at 55 years of age, train drivers even at 50 years of age, are deprived of this right. So it is clear why the Railwaymen staged a real traffic collapse during the strike. And her pension was still 10 percent above the national average.
If we compare everything overall, the French get a more radical version of the pension reform than we do.
Our correspondent reports from Paris.
When you see people storming one of the rare trains leaving the North station, you don’t think you’re in Paris. Most train drivers still don’t go to work. The subway is still closed, almost all of the lines. Trains only run where automation works. Anyone who risks getting behind the wheel as a bus driver must be protected from angry colleagues by the police.
Air traffic controllers are also on strike, so there are frequent flight cancellations, crowds at airports and endless traffic jams that break all records – in Paris it’s more than 700 kilometers in rush hour – and new demonstrations.
In Nantes, the police again used tear gas. Hundreds of thousands of people took to the streets across France the day before all the details of the pension reform were announced.
The sixth day of the strike. They promise to do this indefinitely and force the government to respond. But so far, Emmanuel Macron has only summoned the Cabinet. Macron summons the cabinet, although it is no longer possible to ignore the people.
“After paying for Gas, water, light, heating and gasoline for the car, I have barely enough left for food by the end of the month. And this despite the fact that my Generation did not work 35 hours, but 45 hours,“said a pensioner.
“In France we pay a lot of taxes, people are confused with a Cash cow. But now we have no milk, people have very little money, nothing to fill the fridge with,” said one of the Frenchmen.
Even those who are not allowed to do so for legal reasons are already on strike.
“Today we have a thousand police officers who have decided to get sick at the same time. This will lead to incredible problems in maintaining order at the upcoming Demonstration, other departments are also in agony, because in France today there are about a Million radical Islamists. That’s a huge amount. Monitoring everyone is very difficult and we have too few police in the police stations. The police are incredibly tired, they have not been home for months, divorces and suicides have increased,” said Eric Roman, a spokesman for the French police union.
The Problem is exacerbated by the weekly demonstrations of the “yellow vests” and by the pogroms organized by the so-called “Black Bloc”, which regularly uses peaceful demonstrations for its own purposes. Recently, they staged a battle with the police in Paris and throwing boards, stones and bottles at the police. She was not stingy with rubber bullets and tear gas.
Against Macron and the street and politics. Former presidential candidate Jean-Luc Melanchon spoke exclusively for “Rossiya 1” about pension reform: “the Problem is that many people retire very late and they are very poor. But that can be solved, it is not necessary to change everything as Macron wants, for the benefit of the big corporations and the pension fund,” said Melanchon.
Everyone was waiting for the speech of the prime minister, the author of this Reform, Edouard Philippe. During the protests in front of the “Total” company, they connected a speaker to a phone and followed the speech in silence.
42 special rules for the calculation of pensions will be abolished at a stroke, the retirement age will remain uniform 62 years, but it will be encouraged to work longer, up to 64. There were a lot of nice words about solidarity and equality, but he announced a little Concrete. People quickly dispersed.
“Right at the beginning of his speech, it became clear that the government would not abandon its project. And that is not acceptable to us. We will continue the strike to prevent implementation,” said Hakim Beluz, a union representative.
The Prime Minister’s statement has been criticized by literally everyone. In France there are only 8 refineries, 7 of which are now blocked by protesters. The fuel reserves in the country are sufficient, which means that there is still gasoline at the gas stations, but the question is how much longer, because the unions do not plan to cancel the strike.
The most difficult time comes with the long Christmas holiday when many want to go on holiday. But will this be possible despite the strike? The prime minister is trying to persuade the protesters to stop him temporarily, but there are not many who are willing to take such a step.