FRANCE: And Now, Concertation

At his first press conference in July, France's President Valéry Giscard d'Estaing fielded questions while standing behind a lectern. At his second conference last week he somberly remained seated, in perhaps unconscious symbolism of the dour words to follow. Sounding like a Spengler with a French accent, for much of the conference he all but prophesied the decline of the West.

"The world is unhappy," he said, "because it does not know where it is going and because it guesses that if it did know, it would discover that it was headed for...

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