this is one conversation/subject that you and I had better let go…
this is one conversation/subject that you and I had better let go…
I wasn’t out Saturday but today (Monday 19th) got a craving for hoummus so nipped out to my local super u late this afternoon…
Sat in a slow moving queue for about 20 minutes…saw several cars ushered through ahead of others waiting in line…the people in the yellow vests were from all age groups…many young folk…
Coming back out I expected another 20 minute wait but more or less got straight onto the roundabout and stopped as four people stood across the entrance to my turning…I sensed the chap behind me getting frustrated so switched my engine off to avoid any accidents and smiled and put my hand up to the four standing in my way…they all smiled back…a woman maybe in her forties…a young lad and two young girls…
I totally support them…
This is something that affects us all, I have never seen so many people from so many different ‘walks of life’ out protesting. Those who live in France rural, where there isn’t any public transport have no choice but to use their cars to go many kilometres to work or shop. Rural taxis/ambulances, among many, have seen a huge hike in their costs and they have already had their protests.
Heating costs have rocketed too. The price per barrel went high then stabilised. Why is it so easy for the government to raise prices but so difficult to lower them once a ‘crisis’ has passed ?
Mix all that into the lack of doctors, dentists and opthalmists in rural France and people are spitting nails !
How do those sitting in the ivory towers of “government” think that the majority of people won’t be effected…?!?
It warmed my heart today to see people wrapped in the flag of Brittany and wrapped up against the cold in hand written fabrics reading…”vive la revolucion…!”
I witnessed my first manifestation on Saturday. In our small but strategically situated town all roads into and through town were blocked by vested volunteers. As I had walked to the shops I greeted the vested ones and asked for a feuille. They were stopping vehicles, handing out leaflets, but there were no tailbacks. Local shops were losing business as the central carpark was more or less empty, and Saturday is usually busy
I have mixed feelings about such protests, not sure of how much they influence political decisions, but better that the popular muscle is kept toned than that it gets flabby or atrophied.
Better that folk react rather than moaning about their lot. Even if nothing much is acheived at least they can say they tried
I did have a picture in my mind Peter of you and your OH wearing yellow vests and dishing out tea and biccies to those who’ manned (wommaned?) the barricades
Yes, indeed, Ann, that’s the next Goble Great Leap Forward handed to me and Berlina on a revolutionary platter, with sauce marchand de vin already versée ! . Maybe we should start with baby steps towards the tea-and-biccies finale by offering coffee and briochettes to begin with, and progressing via coffee and biscuits to the ultimate PG tips and custard creams. Don’t want to invite the revolutionary tumbrils onto our gazon by mistake!
I am rapidly losing any sympathy for these protesters as I see how much disruption they are causing their fellow citizens & how little affect it is having on government. People’s frustration at high fuel taxes is turning to anger at having their freedom of movement controlled by those who have no right to do it.
The behaviour of some of these protesters can be intimidating & it will not be long before there are more injuries or deaths as a direct result of their actions.
If 5 people stood in the middle of the road to block it they would be arrested. Because there are 500 there is no way that the police can cope - anarchy rules!
Freedom of movement is a human right & should not be taken away by mobs.
I support the sentiment, not the action. And it has nothing to do with politics!
I lost faith with the gendarmerie when they allowed protesters to block the international route out of Calais with burning tyres.
They stood on the side with folded arms and had no intention of upholding the law.
Yesterday all roads into and out of our local town (Langon in the Gironde) were bockaded including the péage for the A62 and the Leclerc Commercial centre. Like Mark Rimmer l support the sentiment but not the action. As l tried to exit the town l had to wait in queues of traffic at each roundabout before waiting to be waved on and redirected by protesters. I needed petrol and food so had to drive to Bazas, the next town to fill up and do the shopping - not a yellowjacket in sight.
Upon returning to Langon l once again joined the queue at the roundabout just outside town where about 50 or 60 protesters were controlling/blocking the traffic flow. Vehicles in front of me were turning around - when it got to my turn l was stopped by protesters standing in the road. I wound down my window and spoke to one of them who told me l must turn around as Langon was 'Fermé. i professed my in credulity that a town with a population of over 8000 could be ‘fermé’ and asked to be allowed to pass as l needed to pass through the town to get home. The gallic shrug l got didn’t quite cut it and the sound of the frustrated motorists horns behind caused me to demand passage in my very best french and as politely as l could muster. This was greeted by a rather insulting racist remark about being ‘English’ and then allowed to pass into Langon which, not suprisingly, was not closed and traffic in the town centre was flowing freely.
It seemed to me that there was an air of aggression amongst the protesters who were exercising unauthorised power over people trying to go about their lawful business - I later read that 2 protesters had been hit by a car and injured at this roundabout earlier in the afternoon. Confrontational protest without leadership and marshalling can easily turn into ‘mob’ rule - Let’s hope nobody else gets killed or injured.
Maybe that will focus attention on the futility of their protests…
I’ve just heard that the blockages etc will be going on right to next weekend… and perhaps beyond…
It’s not as if ordinary folk trying to go about their business are unaware of the high fuel prices is it?
This the roundabout on the road out of Albi heading towards Rodez. There are fires lit with cauldrons of soup and coffee to keep the 200 or so troops fed.
As was mentioned earlier I find it amazing the cross-section of people protesting from students to OAPs.
Yes Ann, we donned our yellow jackets - another reminder I need to lose weight !!
I drive 300km a week just to get to work and back, it costs an arm and a leg, my salary has been frozen for the past 9 years and tonight at 7pm the last thing I needed after a 11 hour day at work was some tit in a yellow gilet stopping me getting into the supermarket.
This is ridiculous …
My nearest petrol stations are blocked, as they were yesterday evening. I haven’t, because of driving around yesterday and this morning trying to get fuel, got enough fuel to get me to work and back so I shall be taking the train and I’ll be late.
I am sorry they are making life so difficult.
It has gone beyond making their campaign aware to national government.
These people should be arrested.
I’m appalled at the damage done to the péage and road infrastructure that @Stella posted.
It’s just mindless vandalism that affects everyone else.
Personally I think the vast majority of people in France have no idea how lucky they are compared to those in other parts of the world. Yes, we pay taxes and maybe too many but we get a huge amount back in terms of pothole free roads, a working health service and benefits system, free education, and no car jackings in downtown Dax.
(The last pointed out by my SA friend who I had lunch with yesterday)