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Niggas in Paris

It's hard running an Obama-style campaign when you're a bland former civil servant whose only real achievement is putting in enough hours in the French Socialist Party to get the top spot on the ticket, after the likely candidate was accused of rape after a tryst with a maid in a New York hotel leading the Party to turn to another man with a foreign last name to lead its charge against Sarkozy for the Presidency of France.

It was easier to dress up Ségolène Royal in 2007 as a revolutionary candidate, than it is to pass off François Hollande, who always looks like a tired bank teller on his last hour at work, as anything of the kind. If Hollande does become President of France, it will be as a party man who was in the right time and place to step in after flashier men like Sarkozy and Dominique Strauss-Kahn imploded.

That hasn't stopped the press from gushing over Hollande anyway as if there were anything to gush about, or prevented the release of "48 H AVEC FH," a viral campaign video that tries to marry Hollande's sheepish campaign route with rap bravado. Set to "Niggas in Paris" a rap song by Kanye West, French voters are treated to quick cuts of mainly African and Muslim voters showing their enthusiasm for Hollande while Jay Z and Kanye West make the usual boasts and threats transplanted to Paris that, in their own way, are every bit as tired and empty as Hollande.

Hollande hardly appears in "48 H AVEC FH" which is a smart decision. It's easier to sell him as a revolutionary candidate if you don't have to look at him or listen to him. It makes it easy to forget that, in this race, Marine Le Pen was the revolutionary candidate. Hollande isn't revolutionary, he's as much a figure of the reactionary left as Bo Xilai, the corrupt Chinese Communist leader and former Red Guard who tried to revive the Cultural Revolution with his Red Culture Movement. A clueless apparatchik of an old regime promising the old socialist virtues that no one can afford anymore.

"Niggas in Paris", a song inspired by Kanye West's trip to Paris, where he hung out with the fashion elite, is a perfect soundtrack for a fake revolution. West, the middle-class son of a Black Panther and a professor of English, is about as revolutionary as Hollande, part of a generation of rappers who make the usual ghetto boasts, but who are as suburban as neatly mowed lawns. The bravado of "Niggas in Paris" isn't that of a kid from the hood making it bigger than life, it's an obnoxious American brat visiting Paris. It's as revolutionary as Hollande or Obama, whose girlfriend related that "He felt like an imposter because he was so white. There was hardly a black bone in his body."

Hollande's banlieue tour in "48 H AVEC FH" tries to borrow the bravado of the rap star party circuit, and that seems about right when he's promoting economic policies that stopped being socially relevant around the time that rap stopped being socially relevant. Hollande, like West, doesn't have anything to say. He's just around, capitalizing on cultural malaise and bad decisions.

The banlieues, the suburbs, are a symptom of France's malaise, and Hollande, like Royal before him, is pandering to a source of easy votes. Unlike Sarkozy who talks like Wilders before elections and then forgets about it afterward, he may even pay up on his promises. During the debate, Hollande did take care to affirm his Republican credentials, there would be no tolerance for veils or gender segregation. But French Jewish leaders have been warning against voting for Hollande in a country in which such preferences are rarely openly expressed by Jewish leaders.

The peculiar condition of French politics has made it hard to find French candidates. Sarkozy is the son of Hungarian and Greek immigrants. Hollande is descended from Dutch Calvinists. Marine LePen was the only French candidate to score and she finished third. But compared to the festering banlieues, Sarkozy and Hollande are as French as they could be.

"48 H AVEC FH" summons up a different kind of France, a hip-hop nation equal to New Britain, a party land that happens to speak French, but isn't French in any other sense of the word. A place where everyone votes the Socialist ticket in between riding trains and taking photos of socialist candidates who venture down once every few years to ask for their vote.

Months before Hollande began making his trip to the banlieues, ANELD, the National Association of Elected Local Diversity, a mainly Muslim group asked the Muslim tyrant family of Qatar for a bailout for the banlieues. Qatar, in addition to taking a bite of European towers of finance, including the venerable Barclays and Credit Suisse, will be pouring 50 million into the banlieues. The only candidate who seems concerned about this is Marine Le Pen.

The cash won't start flowing until after the elections are done, to avoid making them a partisan issue, but who can really object? The banlieues are a disaster and if the Al-Thanis want to blow some dough on them, that's money the Republic doesn't have to spend on them. Close observers might wonder if Qatar might not want to do to France, what it has already done to Egypt and Tunisia, not to mention Libya and Syria, but those observers are invariably dismissed as paranoids.

Qatar has been close to Sarkozy, who fought one war for the Al-Thanis in Libya, and helped drag in Cameron and Obama to help out, but like smart investors they might be considering buying a little property in Hollande. While Sarkozy is good for Qatar's international ambitions and business interests, he's not the man that French Muslims need. Sarkozy's Islam policies have been weak, but there's always a long way down.

The Qataris have met with a Hollande associate at the Royal Monceau, a French hotel owned by Qatar, and the Al-Thanis have been major investors in Correze, where Hollande served as President of the General Council and Hollande has been suitably grateful. Qatar has been investing in French politicians for a while. Take Jean-Christophe Lagarde, a Vice-President of the National Assembly, Executive Chairman of the New Centre Party and President of the Assembly's Friendship Group with Qatar.

Hollande is all for higher taxes, but Qatar wants to make sure that the higher taxes don't apply to it. Qatar is exempt from Capital Gains taxes in France, which gives the Al-Thani royals a solid commercial advantage when buying up French assets. And tethering that economic power to a growing domestic minority by way of the banlieues makes it all but impossible to budge Qatar. With the banlieues, Qatar doesn't just have some French banks and hotels, it has France's Muslim minority with all its ready capacity for violence at its disposal.

Compared to Turkey's thuggish attempts to take charge of Germany's Muslim minority, the Qataris know how to be subtle. That's something the makers of "48 H AVEC FH" don't know how to be. The video isn't really about the little grey man who smiles awkwardly while holding up his ballot to the camera, it's about the colonized colonizing the colonizers. But it's not the Somalis or the Algerians, like Kamel Hamza, ANELD's president who famously described himself as Algerian and French, who will really do the colonizing.

If the Republic of France becomes an Emirate, it will not be ruled by the riffraff out of the banlieues, no more than the mobs of Tahrir looting their way across Cairo will inherit with the Muslim Brotherhood. The mosques of the banlieues are calling for the faithful brothers and sisters to come out for the little grey man, the bank teller of socialism, who will sign over Qatar's checks to them, but it is the Emirs who plan to rule the Emirate of France.

Like the rest of Kanye West's music, "48 H AVEC FH" is empty bravado. The revolution here isn't Hollande's reactionary socialism or even the rise of the post-French France of hip-hop tracks boasting of the rape of the republic, replaced in the viral video by the relatively sanitized "Niggas in Paris" with West regaling his trip to France as an aggressive fame odyssey. They are what is replacing France, but a hole is not a vessel. It is the emptiness and chaos of the banlieues multiplied infinitely across the entire country. And then across all of Europe.

"Niggas in Paris" is culture as a series of status symbols and brands. There is very little that is French in "Niggas in Paris" besides the fashion brands  It is a perfect template for post-French politics that mean nothing. Marine Le Pen is not wrong when she says that there's no real difference between Sarkozy and Hollande. Both men will do Qatar's bidding. Both will let the banlieues grow. Both will preside over the flow of Muslim immigrants into France. Both will preside over the death of France.

Islam is a symptom of the problem, but Sarkozy and Hollande are the problem. They are the politics of the past dressed up in cutting edge design and corruption, dysfunctional economics and imperial ambitions painted on a cloth behind which you can see the car fires burning in Paris. The cloth is as thin as "Niggas in Paris" or one of Obama's slogans, all ambition and bravado with no substance.

Hollande, the likely beneficiary of the French public's dissatisfaction with Sarkozy, is a placeholder for the long fall of the republic into night. The Qataris are buying up France and the banlieues are swelling because of the malaise leading to the fall. They are the phlegm and sputum that show the presence of the illness, but the illness is there in the body of the nation. The short term debates over economic growth will define the election, but the long term future will be defined not by elections, and not even by demographics alone, but by the soul of a nation.

France, like the rest of Europe, like America, is falling into its own dark night and only a revival of its national values can save it.


  1. :O You used the N word..
    I'm telling Mom.

  2. Anonymous6/5/12

    Remember, these guys are geniuses.

    "Niggas In Paris"
    (with Jay-Z)
    So I ball so hard muhfuckas wanna fine me
    first niggas gotta find me
    What’s 50 grand to a muhfucka like me
    Can you please remind me?
    Ball so hard, this shit crazy
    Y’all don’t know that don’t shit phase me
    The Nets could go 0-82 and I look at you like this shit gravy
    Ball so hard, this shit weird
    We ain’t even s’pose to be here,
    Ball so hard, since we here
    It’s only right that we be fair
    Psycho, I’m liable to go Michael
    Take your pick, Jackson, Tyson, Jordan, Game 6
    Ball so hard, got a broke clock, Rolleys that don’t tick tock
    Audemars that’s losing time, hidden behind all these big rocks
    Ball so hard, I’m shocked too, I’m supposed to be locked up too
    you escaped what I’ve escaped
    You’d be in Paris getting fucked up too
    Ball so hard, let’s get faded, Le Meurice for like 6 days
    Gold bottles, scold models, spillin’ Ace on my sick J’s
    So ball so hard, bitch behave, just might let you meet Ye,
    Chi towns D. Rose, I’m movin’ the Nets to BK

    Ball so hard muhfuckas wanna fine me
    That shit cray [x3]
    [Kanye West]
    She said Ye can we get married at the mall?
    I said look you need to crawl ‘fore you ball
    Come and meet me in the bathroom stall
    And show me why you deserve to have it all
    Ball so hard
    That shit cray (that shit cray), ain’t it Jay?
    Ball so hard
    What she order (what she order), fish filet
    Ball so hard
    Your whip so cold, this old thing
    Ball so hard
    Act like you’ll never be around muhfuckas like this again
    Bougie girl, grab her hand
    Fuck that bitch she don’t wanna dance
    Excuse my French but I’m in France (I’m just sayin’)
    Prince William’s ain’t do it right if you ask me
    Cause I was him I would have married Kate & Ashley
    What's Gucci my nigga?
    What's Louie my killa?
    What's drugs my deala?
    What's that jacket, Margiela?
    Doctors say I’m the illest
    Cause I’m suffering from realness
    Got my niggas in Paris
    And they going gorillas, huh!
    [(Chazz) & Jimmy]
    I don't even know what that means.
    (No one knows what it means, but it's provocative)
    No, it's not
    (It gets the people going!)
    Ball so hard muhfuckas wanna fine me
    Ball so hard muhfuckas wanna fine me
    [Kanye West]
    You are now watching the throne
    Don’t let me get in my zone [x3]
    These other niggas is lyin’
    Actin’ like the summer ain’t mine
    I got that hot bitch in my home
    [Kanye West]
    You know how many hot bitches I own?
    Don’t let me get in my zone [x4]
    The stars is in the building
    They hands is to the ceiling
    I know I’m bout to kill it
    How you know, I got that feeling
    You are now watching the throne
    Don’t let me into my zone [x2]
    [Jay-Z & Kanye West]
    I’m definitely in my zone

  3. It is sad to see France circling down the drain.

  4. Anonymous6/5/12

    The far left is going to drive the nations into the hands of the far right (like Le Pen). Nigel Farage warned the EU about this. Do you blame the French for voting LePen if they don't think Sarkozy can win, what other choice do they have?
    Lets see what we have on our hands in 2016, unless the man who walks on water makes himself King for Life in the next 4 years.

  5. Anonymous6/5/12

    It's not sad to see Europe going down the drain. It's where they belong. They now appeal to the lowest common denominator while pressing Israel into the hands of those who want to murder them. Go to hell Europe- soon, very soon...

  6. Lemon: Just dial


  7. Niggas in Paris...good grief.


    Obama's theme music should be the Khachaturian Sabre Dance lol. His entire adminstration is like one giant hockey game, with players from different countries passing the puck to each other.

    The Sabre Dance playing the entire time.

  8. Julieann Baker6/5/12

    Obama's theme should be something "Manchurian".

  9. Islamic flags at the Bastille celebrate the victory of "their" candidate. From the pulprits of 700 mosques in France the order went out: vote for Hollande - and they did and now instead of "Vive la France" we will hear "Allah Akbar".

    I feel sick! :(

  10. Anonymous6/5/12

    While it may result in continuing price increases in the cost of apartments of Israel, the election is no doubt a positive thin in terms of increasin the aliyah of French Jews to Israel. No sane French Jew is going to stay under this clod's leadership, in my opinion.

    LePen is setting herself up for not only their local elections but national power in the future when the French have finally tired of the islamization of their country. In the meantime Merkel is goin to wipe the floor with the new French leader, since she calls the shots in Europe.

    On the bright side, maybe we can export Beinert, Freidman, and Joe Klein for a reality series, " Jews in France". Put these three in a nice muslim-dominated arrondisment neighborhood and watch the drama that unfolds. Better than Snooki and J-Wow!

  11. Anonymous6/5/12

    AGREED: They now appeal to the lowest common denominator while pressing Israel into the hands of those who want to murder them.

    How is this different from the party in power in the USA?

    If BO wins, we won't be far behind.

  12. Here is what you need to know about the dude:

    attended Saint Jean-Baptiste de La Salle boarding school, then HEC Paris, École nationale d'administration, and the Institut d'Études Politiques de Paris (Paris Institute of Political Studies). He graduated from ENA in 1980.

    He is part of the club that runs France, has done so for years, and will continue to do so for the foreseeable future. There will be no major changes. Resume your stations. Nothing to see here, just move along.

  13. Le Pen is hardly far right. She still had economic policies that would be considered left-wing in the US. But she's Le Pain Perdu, pardon my French. The New Slogan of l'ésperance sans change is this:

    « Les merguez c’est maintenant ! »

  14. Anonymous7/5/12

    "No sane French Jew is going to stay under this clod's leadership, in my opinion."

    Who told you the French Jews were sane ?
    Out of 400,000,50,000 will settle in Israel,the others will fall into oblivion .....


  15. Julieann--That is true. He is a Manchurian candidate. Now that I think of it, the Sabre Dance should be our theme song.

    The music is from the ballet Gayane. She and everyone else works very hard on the community farm. Everyone except her scumbag husband who never misses an opportunity to belittle her.

    At one point Giko the scumbag locks Gayane in a closet. She breaks free and the true hero who loves her saves the day.

    She condemns his plot to conspire with the three smugglers to burn down the farm and take the money that they embezzled and flee abroad.

    In other words it's all about treason and standing up against it.

    :( that the ballet went its theme of nationalism to a simple garden variety romance.

  16. Anonymous7/5/12

    Actually, emigration of French Jews should rise, after the recent slaughter and the fact no one who believes in self-preservation would dare wear a kippot on the street in many French cities.

    Remember that while a number still live there for now, the relevant question is how many have bought homes in Israel.


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