Get PJ Media on your Apple

Francois Hollande’s Gayetgate in Perspective

The French don’t care much about the Hollande-Gayet scandal because they don’t care about marriage and family values anymore.

by
Michel Gurfinkiel

Bio

January 23, 2014 - 11:15 pm
Page 1 of 2  Next ->   View as Single Page

french_magazine_hollande_julie_gayet_1-22-14-2

Truth be told, despite the best efforts by the French and British media to sell their wares, one can hardly call it Gayetgate. Indeed, the president of France, François Hollande, 60, has a mistress, actress Julie Gayet, now 41, whom he met about two years ago, even before being elected. Two weeks ago, Closer, a gossip weekly, published a seven-page report that included pictures of the president paying a visit to Gayet’s love nest, an apartment located on Rue du Cirque, one block away from Elysée Palace, the French head of state’s residence in central Paris. However, 77% of the French see it as a private matter. In other words, they do not care.

Nobody is calling for the president to resign, or apologize, or engage in explanations — even if he appears to be betraying Valerie Trierweiler, 49, the partner who lives with him at Elysée and enjoys — at least for the moment — a de facto first lady status. The main political repercussion is that the Gayet case eclipsed Hollande’s January 14 press conference, a very important event where he admitted that his socialist policies — choking taxation (especially for entrepreneurs and the middle class) and welfare benefits for growing numbers of “underprivileged” citizens and residents — were a failure. At the same press conference, Hollande promised to turn to a more pro-business agenda.

One reason for such leniency towards Hollande in the Gayet case is good old Gallic tradition. In France, as in many European countries, kings or presidents have always kept mistresses quite casually. Every French king or emperor was reported to entertain one or several “favorites,” except the devout Louis IX (1214-1270), whom the Catholic Church canonized as Saint Louis; and the reform-minded Louis XVI (1754-1793), who inadvertently ushered in  what was to become the Great French Revolution in 1789 — and lost both his throne and his head in the process.

sarkozy_carla_bruni_1-12-14-1

Then-President Nicolas Sarkozy of France and his wife Carla Bruni-Sarkozy attend the laying of a wreath at the statue Of Charles De Gaulle on March 27, 2008, in London, England. Photo by Entertainment Press / Shutterstock.com.

In more recent times, presidents were not much different than their royal predecessors. Felix Faure famously passed away at Elysée Palace’s Salon Bleu in 1899 while allegedly being “serviced” by Mrs. Marguerite Steinheil. François Mitterrand — president from 1981 to 1995 – was dubbed “Francois the Seducer” and kept a second family on state-owned and state-funded premises. Jacques Chirac, who succeeded him, enjoyed many passing or lasting relationships. As for Nicolas Sarkozy, president from 2007 to 2012, he divorced twice before settling with former top model Carla Bruni, whom he dutifully married in 2008.

Another reason for French leniency is that Hollande is a decidedly non-marriage-oriented man. He lived for twenty years with Segolene Royal, now 60, a strong-headed political woman who was the unsuccessful socialist candidate for president in 2007, and had four children with her, without being married to her. Likewise, neither did he marry Valérie Trierweiler, a twice-divorced journalist, nor even engage in looser a civil partnership with her (PACS in French legal terminology). He was, at most, rude or discourteous towards Trierweiler; but he did not cheat on her technically.

The Lessening of French Mores

But a deeper reason is that Hollande’s case actually reflects the present state of French mores. The marriage rate in France dropped from 7.8 per 1000 in 1970 to 3.7 per 1000 in 2011: as a matter of comparison, it still was 6.8 in the United States in 2013. The divorce rate in France soared from 0.8 per 1000 in 1970 to 2 per 1000 in 2011. Laws and codes were streamlined in order to erase any differences between married and unmarried couples, legitimate and illegitimate children, and man/woman and same-sex partnerships. Religious marriage declined dramatically, especially among Catholics: barely one French couple out of four currently gets married in a church. One French family out of five is a single-parent family. One family out of ten is a recomposée (reconstructed) family where children born out of previous marriages or partnerships are raised together. A further indication of the decline of marriage as a social pattern is that 53% of the French think that one can be unfaithful and still be in love, while 58% think they can forgive their partner’s unfaithfulness.

Within such a context, Hollande’s vaudeville-esque behavior may almost appear acceptable. What still may be questioned is the need for an unmarried president to keep an unmarried first lady, or whether his security as the head of the country (and the holder of France’s nuclear strike codes) can still be ensured while he wanders at night, even for such short drives like the Rue du Cirque.

Comments are closed.

All Comments   (20)
All Comments   (20)
Sort: Newest Oldest Top Rated
EJO1 : I don't understand your question... And I'm French.
26 weeks ago
26 weeks ago Link To Comment
EJO1 : I didn't understand your question... But I'm French
26 weeks ago
26 weeks ago Link To Comment
And regarding my other question, basically I was wondering what you and the other French groups you listed (specifically Generation Identity) felt about the massacres of Christians conducted by the French Revolutionaries and promoted by the likes of Rousseau and Voltaire beforehand? I want to restore France to being the "Sister of Rome" as a Catholic, get rid of Rousseau's dark legacy, which still is persecuting many of us Catholics (I don't care about restoring the monarchy, however, just making sure Catholicism regains the dominance in France that Rousseau's teachings destroyed). Here in America, at least, the French Revolution is lauded by some of our teachers (who incidentally several also hated the Catholic Church, one of the teachers, anyways) as being the best thing since sliced bread, and compared it to our American Revolution, ignoring or otherwise downplaying the blatant anti-Christian nature of "viva la revolution"
26 weeks ago
26 weeks ago Link To Comment
http://www.histoire-pour-tous.fr/histoire-de-france/3456-revolution-francaise-et-religion-3.html
During The Revolution, most of privilèges were for Clergy (and the Royal Family), revolutionnaries thought . We made so that the revolutionaries believe that all their problems came only from the religion and they wanted to create another religion of the Being Supreme. It was necessary to find a culprit! And nowadays, France and Europe are trying to do the same with Catholics ! Just to please in their very numerous and powerful Muslim voters (Qatar) because they are almost the only ones to vote for the left which gives them more and more "reasonable" settlements. All this to keep(guard) their place ! For example : They rewrite our History and even replace some subjects by the History of African tribes (in History Schools books)! They have a dangerous ideology : at the end no more European people but a melting-pot of everything and nothing...
26 weeks ago
26 weeks ago Link To Comment
Okay, I'll try to rephrase what I was trying to ask: There was an event in your country known as May 1968, which is to France what the Hippie movement was to us Americans, not only in regards to protesting Vietnam and the current government, but also wanting to promote free love and effectively establish anarchy. One of my video games, Metal Gear Solid: Peace Walker, has a character by the name of Cecile Cosima Caminades. Her overall character is sultry, and she attributes her overall personality as stemming from the events of May 1968. During the tape, she implies that every single female in France by the time of the game (1974) was effectively a harlot just like her thanks to May 1968.

To get straight to the point, what I want to know is if it was actually true that a vast majority, if not all of France's females during that time actually did become just like Cecile (since the game strongly implied if not stated that all of them did [specifically, "I'm [Cecile's] no different than any other Parisian women. Not since May 1968."].)? I might also need raw data to verify it as well.

Since I've never actually visited France, never was born there, and I'm not even of French descent (unless you count Canadian from my dad's maternal side of the family), I have absolutely no way of knowing anything myself, that's why I need to know from someone who's French whether this was indeed true. It also doesn't help that this article implied that 3/4ths of France supported that amoral upheaval: http://www.theage.com.au/news/world/bhistoryb-france-is-still-torn-over-its-revolution-forty-years-on/2008/04/28/1209234751594.html
26 weeks ago
26 weeks ago Link To Comment
26 weeks ago
26 weeks ago Link To Comment
Thanks. The article seemed a bit confusing, though (though that might be because I'm using Google translator). I'm not sure if it was speaking out against May 1968 or if it was actually praising it. The last paragraph sort of implied that it supported the desecration of religion and morality with its claim of "blowing a lid of [sic] Puritanism and an outdated moral order." And in either case, I'm not sure it answered my question of whether the claim that all women turned out that way in that time period was true or not.
26 weeks ago
26 weeks ago Link To Comment
Zenobia was 271 A.D., right?
26 weeks ago
26 weeks ago Link To Comment
my roomate's sister-in-law makes $88 /hour on the laptop . She has been without work for seven months but last month her payment was $12416 just working on the laptop for a few hours. site here......
w­w­w.J­o­b­s8­4.C­o­M
26 weeks ago
26 weeks ago Link To Comment
This I am married and have a mistress or I have live in lover who is lover #4 is sooner or later going t lead to polygamy or its' functional equivalent.

So the whole it is private and nobodies business is pure bunk. To support the women, the children and the lifestyle, ... to support the next young thing, they are going to need sugar as in $$$ money $$$. of course these guys are all inventors, innovators or skilled engineers. NOT! so where are they going to get the money?

From crony capitalism. How do you pull that off successfully? by being in government
26 weeks ago
26 weeks ago Link To Comment
Hi Dizzy31, I'm curious; are you French or have you lived in France for a lengthy time? I'm wondering because I hope you are right. And we shouldn't be looking at the French with any air of moral superiority, either. They are just further down the stream - the same way we're headed.
26 weeks ago
26 weeks ago Link To Comment
Yes, I'm French and French people don't feel Superior ! It's just a prejudice. Most of French people remember what we owe to you since your help during the 2nd World War... The French media is the only culprits if some of French are still critical towards this Americans and it is still the media wich maintain this established fact !
26 weeks ago
26 weeks ago Link To Comment
"Sister of Rome" France was definitely equivocable in terms of moral superiority to the Vatican of Rome. Unfortunately, thanks to the Enlightenment and people like Voltaire and Rousseau, France lost that from what I've heard. Is there any way to have the French regain Christian dominance?
26 weeks ago
26 weeks ago Link To Comment
NO the French people are not without morality and without faith! Unfortunately the Power (Hollande's Government) stole them their dignity and their power to say of what they think !
Our media system locks completely the French opinion. Therefore, the media want to persuade us, supporting polls(soundings), that it is normal to deceive his spouse, and that the French people pay no attention to what takes place on the Elysee. Yet, inth real life, the French people speak only about that and they are shocked by this boor's attitude of the President. 97 % of the journalists are left-wingers! In France, we have no more the way to rise against the Government: it should be for the media, the 4th power, to make this work. There is a gap enter the way they treated the former president and that this! The people are not fooled anymore: Hollande lied to everybody and all the time!
26 weeks ago
26 weeks ago Link To Comment
I feel for you, DIZZY31. Pravda-type media is a growing phenomenon throughout western Europe and North America. The Internet and other media outlets have made a dent in it, but not enough. I hope that the French develop their own form of the Tea Party and UK's UKIP. I'm not sure that the National Front in France will be a solution, but I could be wrong. If you're still out there, DIZZY31, I'd like to know more of what you think.
26 weeks ago
26 weeks ago Link To Comment
Yes We have several media of re-information on the Internet as :
Riposte Laïque
Nouvelles de France
Boulevard Voltaire
Résistance Républicaine
Génération Identitaire...
They do a tremendous job to convey the truth about many problems in France. Issues related to policy or Holland/Sarkozy, Europe of Brussels, immigration, education, etc.. and denied by our politicians and the media who licks politicians' boots. They are often in lawsuits against organizations such as SOS Racisme CRAN or that do not support the French can be informed ans attack them! And yes, most of these re-information medias think that National Front is the answer for most of problems, as I.
26 weeks ago
26 weeks ago Link To Comment
Thank you for your reply DIZZY31. I hope that we'll see more comments from you on PJMedia!
26 weeks ago
26 weeks ago Link To Comment
France has created their own form of those groups, actually: It's called "Generation Identity." I don't know if they are intending to take France back to before the French Revolution, though, when France's Catholic Church was very much strong.
26 weeks ago
26 weeks ago Link To Comment
Thanks EJO1 for the info about Generation Identity.
26 weeks ago
26 weeks ago Link To Comment
DIZZY31, you seem to speak as someone who is either a Frenchperson or living in France for a very long while. If you are either, I have a bit of a question for you: What is the actual percentage/population total of females in France who basically became sultry since May 1968 (which is France's equivalent of our hippie movement) from personal experience and/or tallied data? The only reason I'm asking is because in Metal Gear Solid: Peace Walker, there was a character named Cecile Cosima Caminades who overall was very sultry, and she in a briefing tape claimed this was the result of May 1968, and implied that all women in at least Paris, if not the entirety of France, turned out exactly like her. I'll supply the transcript:

"[SNAKE]

You seem like a very... how do I put this... uninhibited woman.

[CÉCILE]

You think so? I am no different from other Parisian women. Not since May 1968.

[SNAKE]

May 1968... The general strike that almost brought down the president?

[CÉCILE]

Right. But it was more than just a strike. It started with the student movement at Strasbourg University in '66. They did not want anything from the country, but instead sought reform at the school. That helped ignite a fire in the hearts of scores of dissatisfied young people, and the movement spread all over France. It was more than just opposition to Vietnam and the de Gaulle administration - people also called for free love and the breaking away from other old values. Looking back, I'm not sure what the main goal really was. But whatever the case, it was more of a young people's movement than a strike or a protest.

[SNAKE]

So... It was like the hippies or something?

[CÉCILE]

In some ways, perhaps. But we weren't blinded by mysticism, nor did we seek a return to nature.

[SNAKE]

I see. So while they wanted to retreat to their closed communes...

[CÉCILE]

We tried to change the world. And in doing so we learned that when everyone comes together, it can be done.

[SNAKE]

You had a lot more success. In America hippies have just become a social problem, while I hear Japan's student movements crashed and burned.

[CÉCILE]

I wonder what was different.

[SNAKE]

Good question. I'd like to know myself."

I tried asking quite a few French women about this, but they weren't able to answer this question, and considering this source, as well as a world news site implying that France is 3/4ths supportive of the disastrous, very amoral event, this doesn't bode well if Cecile was indeed being literal and not exaggerating (saying "I'm no different than any other [insert group here]" pretty much states that literally everyone in that group is like you).

Also, what are your contemporaries' views on Rousseau and Voltaire, as well as the French Revolution, especially its gory acts and their destroying Christians? I want to know, because for some reason, they're being glorified, at least here in America. I also hope you guys (if you guys are French, I mean) also throw out Sartre's teachings.

France used to be a very religious country (enough that the Pope initially considered relocating the Vatican to France from Rome), but right now, especially from what I've read up regarding May 1968, the French Revolution, and others, it seems that religion is basically downplayed and almost persecuted, and amoral behavior is promoted. I pray that's not the case. I'd rather follow the Sister of Rome that France once was than follow the Liberal Bastion it currently is purported to be right now.
26 weeks ago
26 weeks ago Link To Comment
View All