SODOM & GOMORRAH: Marine Le Pen’s surging popularity in France validates the Restorus hypothesis – in periods of instability, people turn to the Conservative Right for answers.
Via @sdlenser on Twitter, the French Far Right is “benefiting” from the Euro crisis. As people become disillusioned with the Euro’s ability to help France, people are turning to Marine Le Pen’s National Front Party. Le Pen proposes a radical solution: abandon the Euro, withdraw from globalization, reindustrialize France, and knock the banks down to size. People are beginning to be attracted to this message since the old answers of globalization and free trade don’t seem to be working and Le Pen has been pretty consistent in this message.
Earlier this year, I derided Ms. Le Pen for being an outdated defender of a dying nation-state. This allegation still stands. Until the National Front recognizes that an economic answer will fall short because we are faced with a spiritual question, their message will remain poorly articulated. French voters are turning to Le Pen because the nation-state was perceived to be stable, unlike the world after the nation-state has lost its legitimacy. The National Front and their followers are grasping for alternatives to liberal legitimacy. Their turn to the nation-state will not work; it too was dangerously unstable and French society can’t support it again. They are too fatigued and too weighed down with a plethora of self-interested parties that have seized and held on to public funds.
Le Pen’s victories will be short-term if she does not further emphasize the religious aspect of her message – that part that The Economist chided as having “heavy Catholic overtones.” She needs to embrace this and she needs to reignite real faith in France. Once the French public turns back toward a genuine spiritual order, they will find the solution to their crisis and their anxiety. The collapse of the Euro is the springboard to this restoration; what is built without God cannot stand. This is the lesson of the Euro and this is the lesson Marine Le Pen is poised to teach.