Le Figaro (France): the end of American Empire?

Former Minister of foreign Affairs of France Hubert védrine, former French Ambassador to Washington, Gerard Araud, said “Le Figaro” that “turanism” will continue regardless of the outcome of future presidential elections in the United States. And America will probably be trambitsky without the vulgarity of trump.

Le Figaro (Франция): конец американской империи?

Alexander Devecchio (Alexandre Devecchio), Carbon Louise (Louise Darbon)

Le Figaro: Mr. Haro, in the evening of the election of Donald trump you have written in Twitter: “After Breccia and these elections possible. The world is crumbling before our eyes. My head is spinning”. What do you mean?

Gerard Araud: the result of the election was a complete surprise. At 6pm everyone was talking about the victory of Hillary Clinton. At 2am I found out that I won the trump. I concluded that after Brexia the election trump was not an accident, but a wave, a reflection of the deep crisis of Western society that no one wanted to notice. I erased this tweet three minutes later, but when the US 2 nights in France, 8 in the morning… These words got a definite response, but no one called me to see what I mean. I chose the wrong expression, but it seems to me, then as we saw in the example of “yellow jackets” in France, the League in Italy and the “Alternative for Germany” in Germany — I was right: in Western societies was a revolt of a large part of the population, the populist revolt.

Védrine: I watched all of this in France, not in the midst of the Washington pot, and took it as confirmation of long-standing phenomenon: the deep crisis of representative democracy. In countries where there is no democracy, there is a desire for it, but where it exists, it is facing a crisis. In the West it is noticeable for a long time, first among the less affluent population, and then among the middle class, primarily in the context of globalisation and European integration. I talked about “electoral revolt” many years ago.The Maastricht Treaty created a certain gap. Brakcet and events of this kind in some non-Western democracies became the forerunners of this phenomenon. The election in the US, a person like Donald trump would have seemed unthinkable because it was disgusting all the Western commentators, all well-intentioned people in the world.The crisis did not start with trump and will not disappear with him. It continues in indolent or acute form. This fundamental protest is part of a historic transformation: the West has lost the monopoly of force, which had for three or four centuries. He remained strong, rich and powerful, but it no longer has a monopoly! There are other powers. That is, we in the West are stuck in a painful review of many aspects: strategic, historical, geopolitical, democratic… the Consequences of all that we hide under the word “populism”, which is a real hodgepodge.

Mr. Haro, it was a surprise to you? You’ve been through the age of Obama, which seemed to be a happy period of globalization…

Gerard Araud: no One expected this crisis, as all macroeconomic indicators in recent years was just beautiful. In 2015, the unemployment rate was less than 5% and the country has been slow, but steady growth since 2010. After the election, the whole American car of the universities and research centres began to move and everyone can see that inequality in society was at a record level since 1910, and that the income of the half of Americans stood still or even declined over the past 30 years. In this overlap, the crisis shock of 2008. Then we realized that the necessary social shock absorbers no. Millions of Americans were left homeless. For the excellent macroeconomic performance was hiding a deep economic split in American society. It is not accidental that victory trump provided traditionally democratic States such as Pennsylvania, Wisconsin and Michigan, where many representatives of the weaker segments of the population.

Anyway, the worst we have yet (Americans are always five to ten years ahead of us): millions of jobs (especially for the middle class) are under threat due to globalization and artificial intelligence. If you visit the Tesla factory in California, you will see there is only one working on 20 sq. meters. All insurance brokers have been sacked, because the AI is more effective. Of course, jobs are being created, but, as during the industrial revolution, the reorganization will take 20-30 years that could lead to serious political destabilization. Truckers — the largest professional group in the US: now they are 4.8 million. In 20 years they can stay just half a million. What do these tattooed 45-year-old drivers?

Védrine: Looking at the situation from afar, I foresaw a victory for trump for a year before his election. This was not a forecast or a wish, I was just considering it. The very mention of this caused certain feelings. Should consider the roots of this blindness, to better understand what the future holds. Today people think that a possible defeat trump will return to some idealized America. It is an illusion.

After the collapse of the USSR and the theories of Fukuyama about the end of history American Imperial triumph was controlled under Bush the father, Clinton in a clever and attractive under Obama. Whatever it was, no end of history was not the question. For US, it was difficult or even impossible to get used to the idea that they retained only the relative leadership, which challenged China.

As for Europeans, after the collapse of the Soviet Union, they believe in the “international community” warm and fuzzy world, but actually they are in “Jurassic Park”. The former head of the SPD Sigmar Gabriel has made a very good point a few months ago: “We — herbivores in the world geopolitical geopolitical predators, and eventually we will become vegan, and then victims.” This applies not only to the United States. Amid all these challenges, which overlaps with the strongest digital shock and the environmental countdown, we need to find a means for the effective protection of our interests, beliefs and values to the realities of tomorrow.

Gerard Araud: People too often do not notice the continuity between Obama and trump. In fact, Obama has already started the departure of the United States in international politics that trump somehow continued, the Americans did almost nothing in the Ukraine and in Syria. They can’t completely move away from the world, but still, a few stepped aside. When they are in the game, then only protect their direct interests. I remember one Frenchman explained to John Bolton, how bad is the situation in Idlib with millions of refugees and thousands of terrorists. Bolton answered, “Yes, it is really terrible. For Europeans”.

Hubert védrine: the US was the world’s policeman since pearl Harbor until recent years. They will never become complete isolationists. Anyway, they don’t want to be missionaries, educators around the world. The rhetoric of American dominance in the world with the imposition pravozaschitniki ideology is no longer supported by Western peoples because they were tired and disappointed. Trump don’t really care, and democratic candidates are careful in this issue. The pursuit of this small, the Democrats and even fewer Republicans. The rest of the world is wondering about USA and thinks: lucky him with this or not. In any case, the Europeans all that alarming.

Mr Aro, you’re talking about the end of the neoliberal world. But can we consider it a failure of the elite that is in power since the 1980-ies?

Gerard Araud: the Reasons why citizens agree to cede power to the minority, it’s one of the mysteries of the political system. This is the essence of legitimacy, which relies on the political system, the apparent effective all classes of society. Today, the part of the citizens tells the elite that has abandoned them. Listen to them — the only possible solution to any democratic system.

Anyway, man is not the best way to understand the things happening in front of him the story. What complaints citizens may not be the core of the problem. Crisis is the economy or identity? That’s the real question. It seems to me that a crisis of identity causing the fever, but that the real problem lies in neoliberalism. It was very beneficial for poor people from poor countries (hundreds of millions of people were able to get out of the terrible poverty), what to say about poor people in rich countries.

You feel that people react. The President told me that in the next 20 years Europe will not be ratified by any of the free trade agreement. The technological revolution represents a true challenge. You need to understand if our political class to respond to the problem of artificial intelligence and robotics that will destroy the entire profession.

Védrine: Our world with the abundance of information and connectivity more has nothing to do with the fact, which was invented representative democracy. Earlier people did not have any information: someone is elected, he spoke in the capital, he was given to work with. Today we elect a man on Sunday, and on Wednesday outraged by some statement or purpose. How can you lead democracies, where individualism is elevated to the absolute, and the people agitated with endless stream of information? Some talented politicians can adapt to it, but with a particular risk of inactivity. Many leaders SAG under the requirement of direct and immediate democracy. Any important decision can take years. With new technologies we could require all citizens each morning to make decisions. This dictatorship of all over each without the tyrant could be killed. Technologically it is possible.

What do the heads? They either become “populists” (if there are people, and listen to him, there is something like populism), or, as Emmanuel macron, is making significant efforts in order to restrain the demand for direct democracy through greater inclusion. This crisis is pushing to attract all different stages of decision-making — during, before and after. As I said, all this is happening against the backdrop of the technological revolution, environmental countdown and a relative loss of influence of the West. We are experiencing so many simultaneous crises, that to confront them would require an effective, proactive, fast, and magical power. How will we adapt to this? The General answer to this question will depend in many respects on what will become the United States.

— Trump has become the target of the impeachment. This is the beginning of the end “of transma”?

Gerard Araud: In the US there were new rules against the backdrop of “chronification” of the Republican party that became the party of identity, protectionism, nationalism and isolationism. That is, the opposite of what was in the Bushes. The speed of this phenomenon is due to the proximity of trump to the Republican voters: it is much more than the Republican establishment to his electorate.

It remains to understand what the new left will emerge in response. The left Blair-Clinton was left-managers: it was only about how to provide support for those who have not been able to get it exclusively through the market. Today elections in the United States — the struggle for the left. In the democratic party debate about the two approaches. Some want to win the center, that is, with the Clinton synthesis, which tells voters that they vote for Democrats because they’re black, young, gays, etc.

Elizabeth Warren (Elizabeth Warren) in turn relies on economic and social Affairs: people should vote for her because they are poor. The democratic establishment (including the new York billionaires) was on the verge of fainting as she prepared to introduce a tax on large fortunes. Warren holds an impressive campaign with the themes that just five years ago would have gone for Bolshevism in American political life: universal health coverage, tax status, abolition of student debt… Now where the less said about the identity and rights of transgender people, which lined up the democratic campaign in 2016.

Changes among the European right is very surprise me: they, too, “ohranyaetsya”. And if we left, given that Europe is really no more left? I think eventually it will be restored.

Hubert védrine: the Governmental left, which championed the same ideas, and Warren, went to the bottom in Europe. If they float to the surface? It is not clear. At the same time, the leftist currents, in particular in culture, did not disappear in Europe and in France. Moreover, they received an unprecedented dissemination (through the media, NGOs, universities). I think the United States will not return to an idealized America of the 1950-ies. It is possible that they will be trombitskiy without the vulgarity of trump.
Alexander Devecchio (Alexandre Devecchio), Carbon Louise (Louise Darbon)

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