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Thomas Piketty

Pesants, the most unequal of professions

The French and European agricultural crisis has demonstrated that no sustainable development trajectory is possible without a drastic reduction in the social inequalities and glaring injustices of our economic system. Instead, the public authorities in Paris and Brussels are embarking on an old-fashioned headlong rush to relaunch pesticides and pollution, without giving themselves the means to tackle injustices and liberal dogmas. This is all the more ill-adapted given that the farming...

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Rethinking Europe after Delors

With the death of Jacques Delors, president of the European Commission from 1985 to 1995, a chapter in European history has ended. The time has come to take critical stock of this decisive period and to draw lessons for the future, a few months ahead of the European elections of June 2024. To say that the Europe we know today was shaped during this period would be an understatement, with the 1986 Single European Act (allowing for the free movement of goods and services), the 1988 European...

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Escaping anti-poor ideology, protecting public service

Let’s be clear from the outset: the edifying investigation published by Le Monde into the intrusive and ubiquitous procedures undergone by thousands of beneficiaries of the Caisse d’Allocation Familiales (CAF), France’s welfare agency, poses fundamental issues for the future of social security and public services, in France, Europe and the rest of the world. By examining thousands of lines of unduly concealed code, meeting vulnerable people and single parents unjustly hounded for imaginary...

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Taking the BRICS seriously

The war in Gaza threatens to widen the gap between North and South. For many countries in the South, and not only in the Muslim world, the thousands of civilian deaths caused by Israeli bombardments in the Palestinian enclave, 20 years after the tens of thousands of deaths caused by the United States in Iraq, will doubtless embody the West’s double standards for a long time to come. All this is taking place against a backdrop in which the main alliance of so-called emerging...

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Israel-Palestine: breaking the deadlock

The atrocities committed during the Hamas terrorist operation, and the ongoing Israeli response in the Gaza Strip, raise once again the question of political solutions to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict and the role that other countries can play in trying to promote constructive developments. Can we still believe in the two-state solution, rendered obsolete in the view of many by the extent of the settlements on the one hand, but also, on the other, by a desire to deny the very existence...

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Who has the most popular vote?

The question of the popular or bourgeois profile of different votes has always given rise to a great deal of controversy. In our « History of political conflict« ,  Julia Cagé and I developed a method for establishing a number of facts and trends. We begin by compiling the electoral results at muncipality level for all legislative and presidential elections from 1848 to 2022, as well as for the most significant referendums from 1793 to 2005. We then classify the 36,000 municipalities ...

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France and its territorial divides

To analyse the urban riots of 2023 – by far the most serious since those of 2005 – and the political misunderstandings to which they give rise, it is essential to go back to the roots of France’s territorial malaise. The suburbs that are currently catching fire have much more in common with the abandoned villages and midsize towns than is sometimes imagined. The only way out of the current contradictions is to bring these different disadvantaged areas together politically.   Let’s look...

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For a European Parliamentary Union (EPU)

Faced with new social, climatic and geopolitical challenges, Europe has no choice but to reinvent itself if it wants to play a useful role for its citizens and the planet. It is with this in mind that a new organisation created in 2022 met a fortnight ago in Moldova: the European Political Community (EPC). The initiative deserves to be applauded. By bringing together 47 countries, from the United Kingdom to Ukraine and from Norway to Switzerland and Serbia, the EPC is a reminder that the...

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What if economists were about to change?

Let’s celebrate. The American Economic Association (AEA), the main professional organisation for economists in the United States, has just awarded the Clark Medal to Gabriel Zucman for his work on the concentration of wealth and tax evasion. Awarded each year to a winner under the age of 40, the distinction is given in particular for innovative work demonstrating the considerable importance of tax evasion by the richest, including in Scandinavian countries, which are often considered...

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Can we trust constitutional judges?

As the ‘wise men’ of the Constitutional Council prepare to give their decision on pensions, it is worth asking a simple question. In general, can we trust constitutional judges? Let us be clear: constitutional courts play an absolutely indispensable role in all countries. Unfortunately, like all powers, these precious and fragile institutions are sometimes instrumentalised and damaged by the people to whom these eminent functions have been entrusted, who often try to impose their own...

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