The French Disconnection: Why Voters Yearn for Substance in the Presidential Election

Marc Chaumeil / French-Politics

Man of the people? François Hollande, right, accompanied by the local Socialist MP, center, visits a farm in Parné-sur-Roc on Feb. 23

Matthieu Pigasse believes strongly that France and its European partners need to act quickly in order to fix the ongoing financial crisis and avoid becoming has-beens of the world economy. Some tough decisions must be made, says Pigasse, vice chairman for Europe at Lazard, the French investment bank, and a co-owner of Le Monde, France's most respected daily newspaper. Among the measures he advocates: the euro should be devalued; there should be broad fiscal reform across Europe; France should be reindustrialized. But as he watches the current campaign for the French presidency, Pigasse is not hearing many policy-focused discussions from the...

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