Walk Before You Run

Listening to Ernest-Antoine Seillière complain, you might assume the French left was still in power. Last week Seillière–president of France's main employers' organization–sternly warned the government to re-examine proposals that "serve neither economic growth nor employment." He also denounced the government's hesitancy to roll back job-protection measures and lift overtime limits linked to the 35-hour workweek. Seillière's criticism of France's nominally business-friendly government was remarkable, since he is not only the nation's leading lobbyist of market liberalization, but also the man who inspired the economic program that helped sweep the conservatives into office last June.

As Prime Minister Jean-Pierre...

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