News From France: DSK Trial, 2012 Elections, Greece Economy and EU and more

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News From France:  DSK Trial, 2012 Elections, Greece Economy and EU and more
DSK and Socialist Party Candidate Shuffle As the scandal surrounding Dominique Strauss-Kahn (DSK) continues to fuel the media both in France and around the world, media coverage is coming to stalker-like proportions, with journalists camped outside of DSK’s rented New York City penthouse (and many French tourists passing by as well). New revelations about DSK’s arrest, when he reportedly claimed diplomatic immunity, have only added to the general interest in the case. Whether or not DSK is found guilty, his candidacy for the French presidency in 2012 is all but nullified by this affair. Who from the Socialist Party (PS) could step into his place to contest Nicolas Sarkozy and the UMP next year? The PS will hold primaries in October to determine just the person who will represent their party. The main candidates thus far mentioned have been François Hollande, Ségolène Royal and Martine Aubry. Former Sarkozy cabinet and rising political star Minister Rama Yade has officially resigned as French Ambassador to UNESCO to work full-time on the presidential campaign of another former Sarkozy cabinet minister, Jean-Louis Borloo, who has created his own centrist party. You can follow 2012 election news closely on this French political blog. Economic bailout for Greece as EU economy sputters? Meanwhile there is ongoing debate in Europe on what to do about the faltering Greek economy, after efforts to rescue it with a joint IMF-EU package have not sufficed and the credit rating agencies downgraded the Greek debt. Germany and France are now calling for a bail-out for Greece, determined to overcome past differences to strengthen the Euro. French banks BNP Paribas, Société Générale and Crédit Agricole are quite exposed to Greek debt, and have been suffering as of late in the markets. In fact, there is fear the debt could spread to other EU banks. The French economy was recently analyzed by Insee and this article sums up the main points and statistics. “Atomic Anne” Lauvergeon sacked as CEO of government-owned energy plant In other news, former CEO of French energy giant Areva (and Socialist civil servant), Anne Lauvergeon was sacked from her post by the French government, the main stakeholder. According to Reuters: Political observers say Lauvergeon, dubbed “Atomic Anne” by the French media for her fiery personality, fell out of favor with Sarkozy after spurning his offer to become economy minister in 2007. He later gave the job to Christine Lagarde. Thursday’s announcement closed a final chapter on a two-year saga over her fate after project issues and a public spat with Henri Proglio, the head of state utility EDF who is seen as close to Sarkozy, further weakened her position. Lastly, there is a new online tool available that lets users track pollution amounts in different cities in France and Europe. Michael Barrett writes BonjourParis news roundups from France. More at his blog American Expat in France. Not yet subscribed to BonjourParis? Register for your free subscription so you never miss the most complete France travel guides, current French lifestyle stories, recipes and up-to-date news from France delivered to your in-box twice weekly. Parisphiles love this book about the greatest buildings & monuments in Paris . . . Five Hundred Buildings of Paris contains photographs and neighborhood tours of the greatest buildings and monuments in Paris. Information includes the building’s name, location, year of completion or renovation and historical highlights. Order Five Hundred Buildings of Paris at our Amazon.com French Marketplace. Did you know you can order travelers’ essentials like luggage, guidebooks, digital readers plus imported gifts for Francophiles at our Amazon.com French Marketplace? Your purchases support costs of keeping BonjourParis a free online travel resource, so merci in advance for shopping with us. Tote your iPad safely when traveling . . . Case Crown Padded Vertical Mobile Messenger Bag for Apple iPad2. Slim and compact, holds your iPad, Kindle, and iPod with room to spare for accessories, like your passport.
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