Saturday, October 02, 2010

French protests continue: some photos

French protests defending the attack on their pension rights have been continuing today, and for once I was privileged enough to catch the tail end of the demonstration in Paris. Sadly I didn't get there for the main event, but saw the end anyway.

I don't go on holiday very often, but for the last five days I've been away in rural France chilling out, eating cheeses and looking over Roman and pre-Roman archeology. As it happens we were coming back through Paris today, the day of the big mobilisation against the right's attacks on workers rights. I just had to get my camera and check it out.

The Socialist Party (Labour) holding a mini-rally to cheering supporters

Anti-Sarkozy hot dogs were for sale

We stop and harrass some Greens, who in turn were very happy to see us

If you have information on Eric the Worst please call crime stoppers

The CGT, one of the trade union federations in France, were the largest contingent that we saw. All the unions and parties had these hot air balloon things. They all had flags too, which were much cooler.

This man is an angry archeologist.

One union had these equal rights posters.

This sort of thing made me feel at home. Man with home made screed.

Some protesters took a rest break on top of this statue.

I saw a fair few of these for the NPA (New Anti-Capitalist Party) but didn't see a block of them, so this woman dutifully waving her flag will have to represent them all.

I did however see the Lutte Ouvierre (Workers' Struggle) block complete with paper sellers (their hot air balloon is out of shot, but they did have one).

I can't tell you how big the main thing was but I can say that the local papers were covering the event days before Saturday and even in a sleepy and very small rural village we saw a CGT sticker advertising the campaign - so I think it was big, although whether it's big enough to win we shall have to see.
Certainly they are facing the same problems in France as we are here, it's just they're more advanced than we are. They've been able to keep more rights and when they're threatened they're able to mobilise in a very serious way. I'd love to see thousands upon tens of thousands of people wearing TUC stickers denouncing the government's cuts... is it just a dream?

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