L'Giuliani, C'est Moi

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Yesterday's quickie post on the French election noted President-elect Sarkozy's tendency to freeze or combat his critics in the press. I called it Nixonian, because it seemed a little pat to compare Sarkozy to GOP frontrunner Rudy Giuliani. "Please!" says Rudy court biographer Fred Siegel. "Compare away!"

The two men met in 2002, when Giuliani had been invited to France to provide advice on how to combat the rising crime rate and Sarkozy was serving as Interior minister. The Frenchman talked to the American about "broken windows" policing and New York's famed COMSTAT program, which provided a meaningful metric for policing. More recently, Sarkozy has been talking up New York-style welfare reform—requiring the able-bodied to take available jobs.

Just as Giuliani wanted to make New York, with its Francified bureaucracies, more like the rest of America, Sarkozy wants to make France more like the more market-oriented Anglo-American economies. Both are critics of multiculturalism—and neither accepts that crime or terrorism can be explained by social causes.

Each talks in a language foreign to the elites—emphazing personal responsibility and the importance of the work ethic. In his recent book, "Témoignage" ["Testimony"], Sarkozy takes aim at those on the French left who depict the rioting Muslim youth of the banlieues as victims of police brutality and French racism. In a riff that's nearly pure Giuliani, he points to the massive social spending in the banlieue—and notes that it seems to have sown far more resentment than good will. Rudy-like, he argues that the young rioters have to adjust to France—rather than the other way around.

We'll get a full 18 months of the Sarkozy presidency before our own election, eight of them before our primaries. That's plenty of time to see if Sarkozy can replicate Giuliani's approach and have any success in a country much more prone to organized violence and blow-ups than New York was in 1994. Take the last 24 hours. When Giuliani won, he shuttled over to Harlem to meet David Dinkins and give a unity press conference. When Sarkozy wins, cars and trash cans start spouting flames.

Tim Cavanaugh's review of Siegel's Rudy bio is here.

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  1. I am (of course!) a HUGE advocate of individual responsibility, but it’d seem rather shortsighted to look riots in the face and go “There’s no deeper cause here! These guys are just a bunch of assholes!”

    Of course there’s a societal cause.

    The question is, should we care? Not me…I am hoping the Gendarmerie broke open a few hooligan heads.

  2. Socialist or not, the socialist candidate was pretty hot for a woman her age. Since I couldn’t care less about the fate of France, I was kind of hoping she would win if for no other reason than she was easy on the eyes for a politician

  3. I’ve already had a very-liberal colleague say the following to me today concerning the riots:

    “Do you see what happens when you elect a conservative? The people rebel!”

  4. “Do you see what happens when you elect a conservative? The people rebel!”

    Do you see what happens when the Left loses an election? They riot and try to accomplish through violence what they can’t accomplish through politics.

  5. Ayn Randian,

    The question is, should we care?

    Consider that much of the problems in the banlieues are the result of government policies and thus of “society” and one can see why one should care. For example, the gang rape phenomenon in some neighborhoods is one example where the French government failed to protect people from an activity which was well known but unacknowledged.

  6. A main societal cause of cycles of criminal violence, across years, generations, etc., is…cycles of failure to enforce the law against violence, across years, generations, etc.

  7. From FoxNews:

    There had been fears that the impoverished suburban housing projects, home to Arab and African immigrants and their French-born children, would erupt again at the victory of a man who labeled those responsible for rioting in 2005 as “scum.” Police reported that 270 people were taken in for questioning and that 367 parked vehicles had been torched. On a typical night in France, about 100 cars are burned.

    I don’t even know what to say about this. 100 car burnings are TYPICAL? And they’re upset that people call them SCUM?

    . . .and the French are OKAY with this???

  8. J Golden Rockwell,

    I have heard that “100 cars burned” statement thrown around a lot. I have no idea how accurate it really is.

  9. For those libertarians that oppose birth-right citizenship, you can look at Frane and Germany to see the consequences of 2nd, 3rd, and 4th generation immigrants that are still not citizens in the country of their birth.

    Most of France’s social problems regarding the riots deal with unemployed, non-French youth that have no prospects of ever getting a decent job, or of being viewed as a real Frenchman, or of achieving citizenship (so why assimilate when the host country won’t accept you).

    Of course, all of this is exacerbated by an immigrant culture that definitely wants to hold onto many of their religious customs even when they conflict with the majority, secular European customs.

  10. 100 car burnings are TYPICAL?
    I really hate it when society makes me burn cars because that takes all the fun out of it.

  11. Carrick: You’ve hit the nail on the head. When someone is a citizen, they have some vested interest in their homeland. When their homeland won’t claim them, why expect any kind of loyalty?

    However, I would add that I’m not sure why anyone would want to claim French citizenship in the first place . . .but I guess it’s better than not being a citizen ANYWHERE.

  12. Grotius: How much faith can you put in ANY statistic?

  13. J Golden Rockwell

    When someone is a citizen, they have some vested interest in their homeland. When their homeland won’t claim them, why expect any kind of loyalty?

    Eveyone is a citizen of some country. They may not be a citizen of the country they currently reside in. In which case they may, in good libertarian fashion, move back to the country of which they are citizens. That country, after all, is their homeland.

  14. I need to point out a signficant error that I made. France does offer citizenship on birth in France. Germany does not.

  15. There still is a cultural issue in the being a French citizen, does not make someone “French” in the eyes of many, many French people.

  16. Preview, Preview, Preview 😉

    There still is a cultural issue in that being a French citizen, does not make someone “French” in the eyes of many, many French people.

  17. *There still is a cultural issue in the being a French citizen, does not make someone “French” in the eyes of many, many French people.*

    You can be a third generation native-born Frenchman in France, and if you look arabic you are still referred to as an “immigrant”.

  18. James: Not so. If you are born in a country which doesn’t give citizenship on birth, and your parents are citizens of countries which don’t give citizenship to all children born outside the country — the United States, for instance — then you may have no citizenship.

    Consider an American who marries a Filipina. They move to Germany, have a child. The child has no citizenship (except possibly Filipino).

    And before you suggest that children of Americans have American citizenship, you might want to look at the Immigration website and see for yourself.

  19. 112 cars were burned per day on average last year. I can’t get the original article, but you can find cites for it if you google the magic words (for example)

  20. http://news.yahoo.com/s/nm/20070507/wl_nm/france_election_violence_dc
    “Official figures released on Monday said demonstrators set fire to 730 cars and injured 78 policemen across France, with 592 people arrested in the violent protests against the tough-talking former interior minister.

    Police say on an average just over 100 cars are set ablaze in France each night.”

    Also: http://www.brusselsjournal.com/node/490

    When I was briefly living in France in the late 80s I locked my keys in the car and was trying to break into it when a couple of helpful Moroccans, er, youths, showed me the easy way to do it: shove smallish scissors into the lock, then open the scissors’ handle and twist.
    They also had some good hash.

  21. Consider an American who marries a Filipina. They move to Germany, have a child. The child has no citizenship (except possibly Filipino).

    I believe that kid would be an American citizen, as he would be the child of an American citizen. There is, of course, paperwork to be filled out.

    http://travel.state.gov/family/family_issues/birth/birth_593.html

  22. It’s interesting to see folk at Reason calling for head-knocking. But yeah, I agree–France can no longer handle anarchy from either the ghettos or the unions. The people had a clear choice between continuing their decline into economic and political isolation or sweeping away the nonsense of the 1968 riots, and they have chosen the latter. Getting their law-and-order situation straight is top of the list–they cannot reform with a rebellious society that refuses to follow the clear majority. Sad but true.

  23. J Golden Rockwell

    If both parents are American citizens children born outside the US are American citizens.

    If only one parent is an American citizen then the child is only a citizen if the citizen parent resided in the US for five consecutive years after his or her fourteenth birthday.

  24. (1) an official record of the child’s foreign birth;
    (2) evidence of the parent(s)’ U.S. citizenship (e.g., a certified birth certificate, current U.S.
    passport, or Certificate of Naturalization or Citizenship);
    (3) evidence of the parents’ marriage, if applicable; and
    (4) affidavits of parent(s)’ residence and physical presence in the United States.

    Doesn’t this mean that the children an ex-pat living and working outside the US would not automatically be granted US citizenship?

  25. Sorry for the post swarm–Germany reformed their naturalization laws earlier this decade. If you are born in Germany to non-citizens, you can claim German citizenship at the age of 18, but you have to give up claims to any other citizenships. Sometimes this means giving up family property, etc., so its not without penalty. Also, it does nothing for the millions of nationless German-born Turks who were already living in Germany.

  26. ..your parents are citizens of countries which don’t give citizenship to all children born outside the country — the United States, for instance

    “The birth of a child abroad to U.S. citizen parent(s) should be reported as soon as possible to the nearest American consular office for the purpose of establishing an official record of the child’s claim to U.S. citizenship at birth. The official record is in the form of a Consular Report of Birth Abroad of a Citizen of the United States of America. This document, referred to as the Consular Report of Birth or FS-240, is considered a basic United States citizenship document. An original FS-240 is furnished to the parent(s) at the time the registration is approved.”
    http://travel.state.gov/family/family_issues/birth/birth_593.html

  27. Going to be a lot tougher for Sarko; the strikes will cripple France. And by law, he can’t stop them.

  28. u r late to the rudy/srako game:

    we first posted this a year and a half ago:

    http://www.blogger.com/email-post.g?blogID=8475986&postID=113107269075870290

    TITLE OF THE POST:

    Thursday, November 03, 2005
    PARIS INTIFADA – CAUSES AND REMEDIES; or why France desperately needs a French version of Rudy Giuliani

    excerpt:

    PARIS NEEDS A RUDY! THE FRENCH NEED A RUDY! If the French have anyone who can be their Rudy, I think it is Sarkozy. If he can’t completely tackle the problem now, maybe he can when he’s elected president in 2007? I hope so!

    WE AT TAB REGULARY SCOOP EVERYONE ELsE.

    No brag; just fact!

    http://astuteblogger.blogspot.com/2007/04/french-need-giuliani-or-astute-bloggers.html

    and more recntly here – when we let everyone know we scooped the dallas morning news.

  29. He is hoping to get parliamentary support to change that law, and those elections are now coming up. Judging from the turnout and vote, he is likely to get it.

    If he doesn’t then he’ll be hobbled and nothing will happen, much as nothing has happened in Germany with its split government.

  30. Most of us think that the child of an American is an American — as he or she should be — then we discover all of the exceptions.

    Remember that the immigration/citizenship issue is bread and butter to thousands of bureaucrats. The more barriers that can be put in place, the better for them.

    Most of those barriers, BTW, were put in place to counter the massive number of military-Asian marriages of the late 1940s through late 1980s. I remember a friend (working for the USAF AGO) mentioning that when an American military man married a European, they had about 10% of the problems that those faced by Americans who married Japanese, Koreans, or Filipinas, and 1% of the trouble faced by men who married Chinese, Thai or other Asians.

    When this wasn’t enough, then came IMBRA, to really screw things up.

  31. I hate to nitpick, but in french the article is only contracted before a vowel or the letter ‘h’. Therefore, “L’Giuliani” should be “Le Giuliani”.

  32. Doesn’t this mean that the children an ex-pat living and working outside the US would not automatically be granted US citizenship?

    No it just means they would not have evidence of the child’s citizenship.

    The birth can be reported anytime. But, obviously, delays could cause problems since supporting evidence (the four items in your list) could be lost.

  33. Isaac: No, it DOES mean that they aren’t automatically granted citizenship, even though they are children of an American citizen.

    Immigration law assumes “guilt” — if they can find a “debilitating factor,” they win and you lose. There are horror stories about the “Dragon Lady” in the US Embassy in Manila.

  34. Oh, just to be clear though, claims to US citizenship for a foreign born child must be made before the child’s eighteenth birthday.

  35. Remember that the immigration/citizenship issue is bread and butter to thousands of bureaucrats.

    BINGO!!!!!

    J Golden Rockwell

    There are different classes but some foreign born children of US citizens do automatically acquire citizenship at birth just as children born in the US or its territories do. To establish that fact paperwork must be filed. Essentially just as you need a Birth Certificate issued by a State or Territory to prove citizenship if you were born here you need a certificate of birth issued by the US Consul if you were born overseas.

    Others can apply for a grant of citizenship without going through the whole Naturalization process.

    Check Le Mur’s link above @ 3:20pm . there is info at other .gov sites.

    Remember that the immigration/citizenship issue is bread and butter to thousands of bureaucrats.

    BINGO!!!!!

  36. I’d like to point out the civil unrest issue isn’t quite as bad as people seem to think that it is.

    J Golden Rockwell,

    That depends on a number of factors.

  37. Gee David, whatever will you do if he’s successful?

  38. A lot of outside observers will cry if Sarkozy succeeds. Just like a lot of the peanut gallery will cry if the Iraqis ever congeal into a workable stable country.

    The same fols no doubt expect Chavez to be successful in his Castro look-alike contest.

  39. A lot of outside observers will cry if Sarkozy succeeds. Just like a lot of the peanut gallery will cry if the Iraqis ever congeal into a workable stable country.

    Well, the election of Sarkozy doesn’t exactly fit into the “Eurabia” script the neocon far right had worked out for Europe.

  40. Well, the election of Sarkozy doesn’t exactly fit into the “Eurabia” script the neocon far right had worked out for Europe.

    I dunno about that. I think the “demography is destiny” folks believe that it doesn’t really matter who is elected in Europe in the near term, since the path for a Muslim-majority Europe has already been set.

  41. Well, the election of Sarkozy doesn’t exactly fit into the “Eurabia” script the neocon far right had worked out for Europe.
    ——————————-

    Um no, actually any observor of European history would predict a far right backlash, it doesn’t mean it will be succesufl.

    Plus Sarko is not opposed to the EU or anything

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