Why this Blog?
A place where I can lament the changing times; for eccentric comments on current affairs and for unfashionable views, expressed I hope, in cogent style; also occasional cris de coeur largely concerned, I regret to say, with myself.
I welcome your comments, so do please write. Please note however that all comments are moderated prior to publication. Whilst I fully appreciate that life can be frustrating, nevertheless, abuse, SMS language and illiteracy will not be tolerated!
Friday, 14 December 2012
Quel Choc! (Pour les francais et des francophones)
No shock really: actor Gerard Depardieu is selling the hotel in Paris that he bought in 1994 for 25 million francs (£2.5 millions) - he's asking €50 million (£40,600,000) for what is a delightful property. See the Le Monde article for a description and pictures.
Given that there is now, in the person of M. Francois Hollande a socialist president who has already raised the maximum rate of income tax to 75% and also increased the scandalous wealth taxes that have burdened the French for so long, it is hardly surprising that M. Depardieu has decided to become a tax exile: he has moved to Belgium.
Apparently M. Depardieu seeks the calme of his new place of residence; whilst this may be true, I fear that it is just window-dressing, as the French are very sensitive about rich Frenchmen 'deserting' La patrie. I well remember the fuss when Johnny Halliday cleared out - to Gstaad in Switzerland - obviously for tax reasons.
The fact is that for years taxes have been very high in France; given the country's stagnant economy, large public debt and increasing unemployment, together with its enormous bureaucracy and expensive social model, I believe that a different approach is required - but of course the trades unions there will never wear it. Perhaps nemesis beckons?
A la prochaine