FRANCE: Lesson from a Piece of Cheese

Premier Antoine Pinay, a resolutely ordinary Frenchman, likes to think of France as a large-scale model of Saint-Chamond (pop. 15,000), his industrious little home town (its chief product: shoelaces) near Lyons. As often as he can, Pinay locks his desk in the Hotel Matignon, his official Paris residence, and slips away to look over the prosperous tannery he still owns in Saint-Chamond, and to chat with local shopkeepers and housewives about the problem on whose solution he has staked his political future: how to cut prices, hold back inflation. Recently, le petit Premier made a startling discovery: high prices...

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