nist Cambodians are enough for thencountry’s future. During the summer,n2000 gendarmes spread through France,nchecking for conformity to the postfreezenprice of butter and eggs. Meanwhile, thenminister of justice freed thousands ofncriminals after abolishing, through parliamentarynmajority, his predecessor’snsemitough law on security. Industries—nthe ones not yet bankrupt—are workingnhalftime, while hopelessly strugglingnagainst worker demands encouraged bynthe government. Unemployment hasnrisen beyond two million, and thennumber of those out of work continues tonrise. Some expect that the communistsnmight wait for more bitterness, thennorganize the unemployed into “workermilitias.”nIs “communism” indeed Mitterrand’snobjective? He is known to be stronglynagainst it. A close friend of his whom Inqueried said that the first adjective comingnto his mind describing Mitterrand isnopportunist. There may be no contradictionnhere; the four communists in thencabinet can scarcely do more damagenthan some of the socialist hierarchs, whonare more Marxist than Marx. The wholenpicture recalls the Allende regime innChile: fanatic, incompetent socialists tryingnto prove to their communist colleaguesnthat Muscovite obedience is stifling—whereasnsocialists bring new techniquesnand strategies to the pink international.nWhile Mitterrand is increasinglynBuddha-like in his inscrutability, hisnminister of industry and technology,nJean-Pierre Chevenement, a man 20nyears younger, emerges as the chief activistnand ideologue. Again: is Chevenementna Marxist? The term is irrelevant,nsince “we are all Marxists now” andnChevenement represents simply a new,nperhaps already international, Marxiannactivist model. Some 12 years ago, it isnsaid, he wavered between leftish Gaullismnand socialism; since then, he hasnfused the two and combined that explosivenmixture with the Utopian socialismn(Engels dixit) of the French 1840’s—nComte, Proudhon, but particularlynFourier. Chevenement’s avowed goal—n46inChronicles of Culturenwhich he admits only in private—is anmonolithic France, frugal and efficient, anmodel for the Third World. He brings tonmind St. Just, the fiery young orator ofnthe Revolution who narrowly missednstepping into Robespierre’s shoes. Chevenement,nwhose ambition is limidess,nregards himself as a stricter, less literarynMitterrand—and as a future president.nI love France, so I should not be suspectednof deliberately painting a darknpicture of the country. Voltaire’s observationnthat “every man has two countries,nhis own and France” certainly appliesnto me. Thus I may close one eyenwhen socialist leaders Quiles and Mermazn(the latter the speaker of the NationalnAssembly) threaten the oppositionnwith the line “heads will roll,” ornwhen moderate minister of economicsnJacques Delors calls the oppositionnspokesmen “fascist loudmouths.” But Inam less tolerant with minister of culturenJack Lang, who ordered that on June 21,n22 and 23 (the summer solstice) Francenbe turned over to “music and fun,” withnthe result that screeching noise fillednevery arrondissement in Paris, and amateurishnclowns stopped pedestrians atnevery corner. This is the socialist notionnof “people’s culture,” while at the samentime serious journalists—if they are criticalnof public policy—are denied newsprint,nand television airs pornographynand propaganda—or hour-long analysesnof Mitterrand’s books. To an unpreju­nnndiced eye, the ofiflcialization of fun hasnsaturated France with a mood which isnobviously morose. The abuses continue:nunannounced strikes block vacationers atnairports, company executives are sequesterednin their offices, an old chateaunis burned down by protesting workers.nAnd the regime that once promised paradisennow is already shopworn, fightingnridicule with threats instead of positivenmeasures or competence. Even the smallnbourgeoisie—the country’s backbonenever since the peasantry drastically diminishednin numbers—is up in arms.nBut, unlike the summer of 1789, theirnanger is turned against the left, supposedlyntheir official representative.nFrom rich man to cafe waiter, they all exclaim:n”Monsieur, cela ne va plus duntout, cela nepeutpas continuerl” Whatndo they foresee? It is expected that thenMarch 1983 municipal elections willnclearly signify that the nation has had itsnfill of demagogic promises and catastrophicnresults. The regime is trying tonmeet this challenge by redistricting,nmost notably by fragmenting Parisn(which, for a change, is now in an antirevolutionarynmood) into 20 independent—andnsocialist—fiefdoms. But thenmayor of Paris, Jacques Chirac, is head ofnthe opposition and a popular man. Henasked the obvious question: why notndivide Marseilles, too? The mayor ofnMarseilles is E. Deferre, minister of interior;nthe issue was quickly shelved.n