French Union Leaders Protest Pension Plan

French Pension Plan Causes Revolt Among Union Leaders

American retirees did not put up much of a fight when the age to collect full Social Security benefits was raised. However, the French are not taking changes to their retirement plan quite so quietly.

Unions vowed that their striking workers would keep disrupting rail and road transportation. Teenagers marched through the streets and pledged to go on boycotting their schools. The government, trying to appear unfazed, urged Parliament to ignore the chaos and speed up the vote on a bitterly contested pension reform.

France remained stuck Thursday in what has become a major test of President Nicolas Sarkozy’s conservative presidency – the turmoil caused by a nationwide strike and protest movement that has maintained its momentum well into a second month,” according to the Washington Post.

President Nicolas Sarkozy’s move to raise the national retirement age from 60 to 62 has sent the country into a frenzy of turmoil that has Union leaders organizing strikes and protests throughout the nation. The demonstrations, violent outbreaks and strikes have brought the French infrastructure to its knees.

It is unclear as to whether or not the protests will get President Sarkozy to change his mind about moving forward with the plan. However, that is exactly what union leaders are hoping for.

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Posted by on Oct 21 2010. Filed under Top Stories. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can leave a response or trackback to this entry

1 Comment for “French Union Leaders Protest Pension Plan”

  1. Editor

    I think that most Americans would agree that these protests are the petty lament of an entitlement society, and perhaps rightfully so. But on a deeper level, this is not just about people being unable to stop working at age 60, its also about wages. If you increase the retirement age to 62, you add that many more people to the labor pool which means there are more people competing for the same amount of jobs in turn creating job stagnation and lower wages. From this perspective, it’s an imposition on the working middle class to withstand the much needed economic reform measures of Sarkozy’s conservative presidency. However, the most likely alternatives are higher taxation and debt carried over to future generations. As the struggle between traditional self-reliance and the potential nanny state escalates to one of the most divisive issues in America today, we should be thankful that our republic does not follow the same tenets of socialism… yet.

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