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FIGAROVOX / ANALYSIS – François-Xavier Bellamy returns to the election of Christophe Castaner as general delegate of the En Marche party. The..

FIGAROVOX / ANALYSIS – François-Xavier Bellamy returns to the election of Christophe Castaner as general delegate of the En Marche party. The philosopher denounces the methods of Emmanuel Macron and the deception of his voters.

A former student of the École Normale Supérieure and agrégé in philosophy, François-Xavier Bellamy teaches in the preparatory class. He is also the author of Les Déhérités, or the urgency of transmitting (ed. Plon, 2014).

June 18, second round of legislative elections: Working won a majority in the National Assembly. On a major promise: that of renewing politics. How many times have I heard while campaigning: "we must put an end to centralized parties, run from Paris, built like stables at the service of a single person..." With the En Marche movement, we were finally going to start again from the field , make the French people work together, give civil society its full place, consult and co-build. Many French people believed in this promise, and supported a president who said he embodied a “new world” made of democratic participation, citizen contribution, transparency and openness. And their candidate assured him: "The new policy is not coming to a room to vote on a motion that has already been decided."

November 18, five months later. At the congress of the En Marche party, members elect the general delegate whom the President has designated as their sole candidate: Christophe Castaner, formed by twenty years of maneuvers in the socialist apparatus, and who recounts having joined Emmanuel Macron "with stars in his eyes".

For my generation, LREM is now an opportunity for a unique experience: to be projected into the great era of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union.

For my generation, LREM is now an opportunity for a unique experience: to be projected into the heyday of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union... The new general delegate of the presidential party says he "assumes the love dimension" of his relationship with the “leader,” and being “fascinated by his intelligence and even his physical power.” He therefore now leads En Marche – the first party whose name was formed by the initials of its founder. The congress was smoothly conducted. A debate was improvised two days earlier, because a congress without a debate would have been weird all the same; but all the debaters took care to affirm their support for the future delegate general. To better ensure the unanimity of the vote, the vote was done… by a show of hands. And with handpicked voters: 75% of them were nominated by the party leadership itself; the remaining 25% were "drawn out" in absolute opacity. The 300 "walkers" who believed in democratic renewal therefore no longer have a voice in the matter... All that remains is for them to contemplate the spectacle resulting from their fine commitment: ministers and deputies taking selfies while waving green cards to pretend to pick the one "the boss" wanted. The New World is as beautiful as the old. How can you betray so much...

Such an imposture carries serious consequences, not only for En Marche, but for France. If the new power does not even listen to its militants from the start, how could the many citizens already estranged from politics regain hope that it will one day want to hear them? And ultimately, an action carried out under these conditions runs the risk of producing catastrophic results: whatever the talent and intelligence of the one who directs it, such a locked organization, by protecting itself tightly from any questioning, cannot what to produce in this voluntary deafness of policies disconnected from the field, at the antipodes of the promise embodied by Emmanuel Macron's proposal.

The walkers hoped to participate in a new democratic moment, they find themselves with the most centralizing, the most autocratic, the most solitary of the presidents of the Republic.

I did not believe this promise; and yet, on Saturday, the sight of this new world humiliating itself by waving green cards angered me deeply. Anger at the unprecedented scale of the electoral fraud of which France has been the victim. Anger for all the walkers who sincerely hoped for a political renewal which indeed we all need so much. And I would like to express here my deep admiration for all those who, known or anonymous, after having given so much to this movement, have enough intellectual rigor to be lucid, and enough courage to speak freely about their anxiety and their disappointment. How not to understand them… They hoped to take part in a new democratic moment, and they find themselves today with the most centralizing, the most autocratic, the most solitary and the most media-savvy of the Presidents of the Republic. Who designates his opponents with words of a violence that we would not have forgiven any of his predecessors. Who would like that no party can embody a respectable alternative, that no community can bring a balance to its solitary power. Who chooses journalists who can understand his “complex thinking.” Who prevents the parliament from controlling the government by imposing silence on the administration, by the brutal sanction of a chief of staff who dared to tell the truth to the elected representatives of the nation. Who the day after the legislative elections quietly crushed the separation of powers by already electing by a show of hands at the head of the majority group of the Assembly a single candidate exfiltrated by the power for problems with justice...

Five months ago, I lost the legislative elections; despite the work in the field, and the confidence of my city, I was paying like many others for the disappointments accumulated over decades by the political parties. For my part, I did not come from these political parties, and I understand this thirst for renewal all the better because I myself have always felt it deeply. With five months of hindsight, I can say it today: failure is not difficult, it is part of life. This allowed me to keep the teaching profession that I love so much, to continue the field work undertaken within the municipal team, and to develop beautiful projects... No, defeat is not as difficult than I imagined. What is difficult and painful, it is true, is to have been powerless in the face of the victory of such a lie, such an incredible swindle. But this bitterness is only valid if we find an obligation in it: that of resuming work together, seriously and sincerely, to provide real answers to this deep need for renewal.

We must resume working together, seriously and sincerely, to provide real answers to this deep need for renewal.

The future of our democracy presupposes alternatives. Five months ago, for me and the whole team that carried this beautiful campaign, only one requirement counted, that of transparency, to allow voters to make a real choice, in conscience. In front of us, the ambiguity already worried me; and I had warned, in June: "we do not know what the candidates of En Marche will do with the votes that will be entrusted to them." We know it now: the new power has confiscated these votes for its sole benefit. As a local parliamentarian said without embarrassment, the elected representatives of En Marche must “represent the government to the voters.” Incredible reversal of roles, for those who, even in the majority, should recognize themselves as the sole mission of representing their constituents to the government...

I hope that these elected officials who definitively drowned June 18 in November 18 feel a little shame today, faced with the abyssal gap between the momentum that brought them to power and what they have done with hope entrusted to them. For my part, only one thing counts now: the promise of renewal that En Marche had claimed to embody, it will be necessary tomorrow, against their renunciations, to keep it.



Source: ©  François-Xavier Bellamy: "Christophe Castaner and LREM, the new political world"

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