Secularism would stifle faith if Australian Labor has its way

Secularism would stifle faith if Australian Labor has its way, by Amanda Stoker, a Liberal National Party senator for Queensland.

Last week’s debate in parliament, as well as much of the related media coverage, betrayed a profound lack of understanding about the meaning of religious freedom in a free and pluralistic society. Two misconceptions stand out.

The first is that the essence of last week’s clash was about whether faith-based schools should have a right to discriminate against pupils on the basis of their sexuality alone. Despite plenty of grandstanding to the contrary, there is clear consensus inside and outside parliament that gay students should not be singled out for different treatment. No Christian school — or any school so far identified — has sought to expel a student for being gay.

What is at stake, however, is the far weightier issue of whether faith-based schools should be free to teach religious doctrines that conflict with progressive values that have the backing of anti-discrimination statutes. …

Should a faith-based school, a theological college or seminary, acting on the basis of its religious beliefs, be allowed to refuse a gender transitioning student to run a club or publish posters or web pages at the institution advocating for gender-fluid ideology?

Should a faith-based school be allowed to refuse a male student who wishes to identify as female but has yet to undergo gender reassignment surgery the use of female toilets and changing rooms?

And should a religious institution freely be able to articulate its teachings on sexuality, human relationships and marriage?

These scenarios are not hyperbole but precisely the type of conduct that could see faith-based schools hauled before anti-discrimination tribunals if the ALP’s amendments to the Sex Discrimination Act are passed, according to legal scholar Mark Sneddon.

Yet Labor senator Penny Wong, her party and large sections of the media insist this kind of intrusion into the operation of faith-based schools has no real bearing on religious freedom. This goes to the second misconception that has corrupted this debate: that religious freedom can meaningfully coexist with laws that weaponise subjective offence.

Foundational human rights such as freedom of religion differ from goals of social justice enshrined in legislation. The former is a birthright of a liberal democracy: one of the rights that’s essential to being a free person in a free society. It is non-negotiable because it is insep­arable from freedom of speech, thought and conscience. These rights are fundamental because without them the underlying basis of liberal democracy falls away. Like freedom of speech, true freedom of religion protects faith regardless of its content. After all, if religious teachings are forced to abide by the secular morality of the state, it is no longer free but ­licensed.

To be sure, religious freedom in practice may be subject to reasonable limits in the interests of public safety and preserving hu­man dignity. But if freedom of religion is to be anything more than a mealy-mouthed platitude, it has to mean the freedom to express faith through worship and teaching. …

This gives the lie to any pretence that Labor’s amendments provide an accommodation between religious freedom and anti-discrimination law. In truth, Labor’s position represents an elevation of secular morality over religious doctrine without precedent in Australia’s history. …

Labor’s bill … prioritises the right of a person to express his or her sexuality as dominant to and overriding of the right to faith, and the right of parents to raise their children according to their own beliefs.

The far left have a long history of telling other people how to live their lives. Goes with their collectivist outlook. In them, the totalitarian streak runs strong.

People who prefer to get on with their own lives instead of meddling in other’s, those with a more libertarian outlook, and those who view the individual as the responsible unit in society, find Labor’s position on religion abhorrent.

hat-tip Stephen Neil

France: A Revolt against Europe’s Elites?

France: A Revolt against Europe’s Elites? By Bruce Bawer.

Maybe this is it — the start of the Western European public’s pushback against the elites’ disastrous multicultural and globalist project.

For years, those of us who write and worry about the rise of Islam in Western Europe have known that eventually, if the governments of these countries did not change course dramatically, something had to give. So far, the natives had, for the most part, been remarkably tame. They had swallowed a lot. Their leaders had filled their countries with huge numbers of immigrants from the Middle East and North Africa, a disproportionate number of whom were making it clear that they had no intention of fully joining or contributing to their host societies but, rather, were content to take, to harm, to damage, and to destroy, and were determined, in the long run, to conquer and rule.

No one had ever asked the citizens of Western Europe whether they wanted their countries radically transformed in this manner. This transformation, moreover, was intensifying by the year. At some point, surely, the native peoples of Western Europe would react. …

There is no one issue — or is there one issue that stands out but goes unmentioned?

Journalists have had trouble getting clear and concise explanations from the rioters of their motives and goals. Perhaps the rioters cannot find the words — perhaps they are expressing a rage that they have yet to be able to articulate. Or perhaps they are reluctant to speak their minds out loud for fear of being called xenophobes, Islamophobes, or racists.

In an interview the other day, the French philosopher Alain Finkielkraut attributed the riots to economic and cultural insecurity on the part of the ethnically French lower and middle classes — people who have been driven out of the major city centers by rising rents, who have seen their jobs and small businesses destroyed by “green” taxes and regulations, who feel they have lost a power struggle with Muslim immigrants, and who sense that their ruling classes have more sympathy for immigrants than for them.

Labor’s Dishonest Scheme To Wreck Border Laws

Labor’s Dishonest Scheme To Wreck Border Laws, by Andrew Bolt.

What it’s up to is this: letting the 1,100 illegal immigrants on Nauru and Manus Island — mostly men — be flown to Australia on virtually any excuse with the help of activist doctors.

Under legislation that Labor plans to ram through parliament with the Greens and independents, any two doctors can order illegal immigrants be brought here for “assessment”, with the government almost powerless to refuse.

Labor would, in fact, wreck the system of sending illegal immigrants to Nauru who can’t be sent home.

The Dangers of Asymmetry

The Dangers of Asymmetry, by Victor Davis Hanson.

It is strange how suddenly a skeptical Wall Street, CEOs, and even university and think-tank policy analysts are now jumping on the once-taboo Trump bandwagon on China: that if something is not done to stop China’s planned trajectory to global hegemony, based on its repudiation of the entire post-war trade and commercial order, then it will soon be too late.

In a wider sense, at some point on a variety of fronts, Americans got fed up with perceived lopsidedness, and their ensuing exasperation started to change status-quo thinking and policy — whether China’s flagrant cheating, the recent illustration, via the “caravan,” of rampant hypocrisies about illegal immigration, or weariness with the asymmetries with the Islamic world.

Exactly. The globalist worldview of fantasies is crumbling. Some tidbits from the article:

The Chinese misjudge Western patience, especially as its surpluses grow, its violations of copyright and patents become more flagrant, and espionage and technological appropriation are seen as a Chinese birthright.

China assumes that many of the third of a million Chinese students and green-card holders in America have an obligation to engage in espionage for the mother country; and they further expect that U.S. visitors to China not only do not share such rigid loyalty to the United States, but if they did, they would be sorely punished by Beijing.

If we think Chinese students at Stanford or Cal Tech or in Silicon Valley are won over by our diversity, prosperity, consumerism, free-wheeling popular culture, and unfettered free speech, and that they will take back such an ethos to China, leading eventually to a democratic spring, the Chinese government thinks that we are sorely mistaken. It believes instead that returning Chinese students and green-card holders will be chock-full of invaluable technological, military, and commercial information but nonetheless turned off by American license — perhaps in the same way that Japanese visitors and residents in the United States during the 1920s, a future Admiral Yamamoto and foreign minister Yosuke Matsuoka among them, eventually became strong advocates for war against the U.S. …

In terms of culture, we also live in an asymmetrical world with Islam itself: Mosques sprout all over the West; Christian churches are banned in many kingdoms of the Gulf and more and more are disappearing, from Syria to Turkey. This is said to be normal, and we are to get over it.

Inside a Western country, if one blasphemes Jesus, the mockery is seen as the stuff of comedy, art, popular culture, and entertainment. Try the same in Paris or New York with the prophet of Islam, and the consequences can become violent and relentless. Try it in a Muslim country, and the consequences are death. That asymmetry, again, becomes normative. To Islamic extremists, this is not a token of magnanimity to be reciprocated but rather proof of timidity and impotence to be justifiably exploited.

Mass and illegal immigration to the West from Arab and Muslim nations is assumed, along with the idea that even illegal aliens from the Middle East and North Africa immediately on entrance to Europe or the U.S. have the right and indeed the eagerness to demand from the West the freedoms and prosperity lacking in most Islamic countries — including the liberty to ridicule the hospitality of their newfound hosts.

Tech Ann Coulter Urges Trump To Snub Twitter, Join Free Speech-Supporting Gab

Ann Coulter Urges Trump To Snub Twitter, Join Free Speech-Supporting Gab, by Luke Rohlfing.

Conservative commentator Ann Coulter, who is one of 46 people President Donald Trump follows, urged the President to  join Gab, which is a free speech alternative to Twitter.

Gab has been growing in prominence in the past few months after the banning of a number of prominent users, including Big League Politics contributor Laura Loomer, who now has a Gab account.

The reason for Gab’s growing prominence is their absolutist free speech policy. With very few exceptions, you have the right to say whatever you want on the platform without fear of being suspended.

Gab also has safeguards against your privacy, allowing you to control your data on the platform. And unlike Twitter, they will not comply with anti-free speech demands for user data from foreign governments.

If President Trump were to leave Twitter, and instead use a service like Gab, it would be devastating for big tech. …

When he has an announcement to make, he can make it directly on Twitter, without having to go through the filter of the mainstream media.

But with many of his most loyal supporters being thrown off the site, it doesn’t make much sense for him to stay. Gab is a website that will welcome both Trump, and his most loyal supporters with open arms.

Zombie Theresa May stumbles through confidence vote

Zombie Theresa May stumbles through confidence vote, by Hugo Gye.

THERESA May will limp on in Number 10 after winning the confidence vote despite a THIRD of her own MPs wanting to sack her.

The PM won the support of 200 Tory MPs, enough to stay in post, but with 117 MPs calling for her to go her time in charge seems to be running out. …

Top Brexiteers including Jacob Rees-Mogg called for her to resign immediately over the “terrible result” while Labour claimed she had been fatally wounded.

Rebel Tories called on the Cabinet to push Mrs May out by lining up to tell her she’s lost her authority.

The PM has already pledged to step down before the next election in 2022 – a vow she made today in a bid to win over more support. …

A source from the pro-Brexit European Research Group said: “The parliamentary arithmetic remains unchanged. We cannot and will not support the disastrous withdrawal agreement the Prime Minister has negotiated.” …

[Labour’s] Deputy leader Tom Watson added: “After 40 years tearing itself apart over Europe, tonight’s vote shows the Tory party is finally and irrevocably split in two.

“It is incapable of agreeing a Brexit deal and unfit to govern. There is no pathway back. We need an election.” …

Brexiteer Development Secretary Penny Mordaunt urged the PM to put rocket boosters under No Deal plans.

She said: “Now let’s crack on with getting the changes we need to the deal on offer and press on with No Deal preparations. We are leaving the EU in 15 weeks.”

Robert:

What a Clusterburach!

According to the Guardian, Scottish critics of Conservative Brexit policy have come up with a new word “Clusterburach” to describe what’s going on at Westminster.

It means complete shambles and is derived from combining clusterfuck and burach a Gaelic word meaning “mess”.

So we’ve got something positive from Brexit, I suppose, but complete shambles seems to describe where we are rather well.

Can the ‘Yellow Vests’ Protests Go Global?

Can the ‘Yellow Vests’ Protests Go Global? by Michael Kreiger.

The gilets jaunes, or “yellow vests” protests, emerged seemingly out of nowhere about a month ago and have in a few short weeks shaken the French political power structure to its core. …

The diverse, nebulous and leaderless nature of the participants and their grievances made it a difficult narrative to counter through the media or government spokespeople. It wasn’t masterminded by dissident political parties or even France’s activist unions. …

The protests have been very popular amongst the wider French population, with polls in early December showing around 70% support. …

The author notes that Egyptian authorities have quietly introduced restrictions on the sale of yellow reflective vests, fearing opponents might attempt to copy French protesters.

We humans are systematically manipulated into seeing ourselves as totally different and at odds with one another, but the truth of the matter is virtually all of us currently living on this beautiful planet share something very significant in common with one another. We all reside in countries run by and for the benefit of a tiny group of lawless and unscrupulous people. While some nations are clearly in far worse shape than others, we all live in very corrupt and increasingly unfree societies. …

The French have provided the rest of the world with an important lesson. That protest movements should ideally tap into widespread grievances and capture the support of the masses in order to be most powerful and effective. This shouldn’t be hard for anyone, since I can’t think of any major governments anywhere in the world that aren’t completely captured by destructive special interests and unprincipled oligarchs.

A jaundiced view perhaps, but not easily contradicted.

‘Still At Large’ – Strasbourg Shooting Suspect Convicted 27 Times Before, Yelled “Allahu Akbar”

‘Still At Large’ – Strasbourg Shooting Suspect Convicted 27 Times Before, Yelled “Allahu Akbar”, by Tyler Durden.

French police have detained five people in connection with Tuesday’s deadly attack on a popular Christmas Market in the French city of Strasbourg — which unfolded only a few blocks away from the European Parliament. However, the shooter, who was reportedly wounded in the attack before commandeering a taxi to make his escape, remains at large, and French authorities worry that he may have fled to neighboring Germany, according to the Financial Times. …

The first shots rang out in Strasbourg’s city center at around 8 pm local time (1 pm ET). A French prosecutor said the suspect shouted “Allahu Akbar” – ‘God is great’ in Arabic — during the shooting. …

No, “”Allahu Akbar” does not mean “God is great”. Rather it means “Our God is great(er)” — it is a war cry of Islamic supremacy.

The most recent casualty count put the death toll at three, while 13 people were wounded, eight of them seriously …

The suspect, Cherif Chekatt, 29, was born and raised in Strasbourg … [He] was sent to jail by a court in the German town of Singen for a violent robbery in Germany. After serving the sentence, Chekatt, a French national with North African roots, was deported back to France in 2017. He has also spent time in prison in France and is believed to have been radicalized in prison. He has been described as “notorious” to police, with a long criminal record

All told, the public prosecutor said the suspect has been convicted 27 times in France, Germany and Switzerland

Scott Morrison’s population expert at odds on migrant cut by Australian leaders

Scott Morrison’s population expert at odds on migrant cut by Australian leaders, by Ben Packham.

Scott Morrison has been embarrassed at his first Council of Australian Government’s meeting as his hand-picked population expert criticised his planned cuts to the permanent immigration intake in front of premiers and chief ministers, amid resistance from every state except NSW to any lowering of migration numbers. …

The Prime Minister’s population policy agenda was undermined at the meeting by Melbourne University demographer Peter McDonald, who said cutting immigration numbers would do nothing to ease congestion in Sydney and Melbourne and could harm smaller states. …

“I believe the current level of migration is the correct level for Australia at least for the next decade, because of labour market ­issues,” he told The Australian. …

Mr Morrison said … he remained committed to cutting immigration from 190,000 to about 160,000. …

It is understood the policy will work in concert with yet-to-be announced measures that would apply geographic conditions on skilled migrants, forcing them to settle in regions or cities outside of Melbourne and Sydney for a minimum of five years.

Perhaps Professor McDonald represents the view of the bureaucrats and academics, who mainly run policy in this country? Mr Morrison is responding to popular pressure (from the deplorables?), and is bravely disobeying our opinion forming class.

What Australian Leaders Wouldn’t Say About Immigration

What Australian Leaders Wouldn’t Say About Immigration, by Andrew Bolt.

Just hours after a Muslim terror suspect murdered two people and left a third brain-dead at a Christmas market in France, our political leaders met to work out how to handle our insane immigration intake.

The Prime Minister and state premiers in Adelaide could have discussed much that makes most Australians oppose us importing nearly 240,000 people a year.

They could have discussed this past week’s news, for instance, like the Sydney judge who warned that “such an ideology has no place in any civilised society” as he jailed another teenager of Middle Eastern background for planning to attack police in the name of militant Islam.

Or they could have discussed the CCTV footage police released of yet another pack attack in Melbourne by Sudanese youths, most from refugee families, who this time kicked two teenagers unconscious.

How Democracy Is Losing the World

How Democracy Is Losing the World, by Pat Buchanan.

What will a watching world be thinking when it sees the once-great republic preoccupied with breaking yet another president?

Will that world think: Why can’t we be more like America?

Does the world still envy us our free press, which it sees tirelessly digging up dirt on political figures and flaying them with abandon? …

Non-democratic states can also become strong:

This century, China has shown aspiring rulers how a single-party regime can create a world power, and how democracy is not a necessary precondition for extraordinary economic progress.

Vladimir Putin, an autocratic nationalist, has shown how a ruined nation can be restored to a great power in the eyes of its people and the world, commanding a new deference and respect. …

Diversity?? Swimming against the tide of history and human nature:

“Our diversity is our strength!” proclaims this generation.

We have become a unique nation composed of peoples from every continent and country, every race, ethnicity, culture and creed on earth.

But is not diversity what Europe is openly fleeing from?

Is there any country of the Old Continent clamoring for more migrants from the Maghreb, sub-Sahara or Middle East?

Broadly, it seems more true to say that the world is turning away from transnationalism toward tribalism, and away from diversity and back to the ethno-nationalism whence the nations came.

The diversity our democracy has on offer is not selling.

Ethnic, racial and religious minorities, such as the Uighurs and Tibetans in China, the Rohingya in Myanmar, minority black tribes in sub-Sahara Africa and white farmers in South Africa, can testify that popular majority rule often means mandated restrictions or even an end to minority rights.

In the Middle East, free elections produced a Muslim Brotherhood president in Egypt, Hamas in Palestine, Hezbollah in Lebanon. After this, a disillusioned Bush 43 White House called off the democracy crusade. …

The next two years in the US will be showcase of the downsides of democracy:

Yet, for the next two years, we will be preoccupied with whether paying hush money to Stormy Daniels justifies removing a president, and exactly when Michael Cohen stopped talking to the Russians about his boss building a Trump Tower in Moscow.

We are an unserious nation, engaged in trivial pursuits, in a deadly serious world.

The Case Against Meritocracy An aristocracy that can’t admit it.

The Case Against Meritocracy: An aristocracy that can’t admit it. By Ross Douhat.

First, meritocracy segregates talent rather than dispersing it. By plucking the highest achievers from all over the country and encouraging them to cluster together in the same few cities, it robs localities of their potential leaders — so that instead of an Eastern establishment negotiating with overlapping groups of regional elites (or with working-class or ethnic leaders), you have a mass upper class segregated from demoralized peripheries.

Second, the meritocratic elite inevitably tends back toward aristocracy, because any definition of “merit” you choose will be easier for the children of these self-segregated meritocrats to achieve.

But even as it restratifies society, the meritocratic order also insists that everything its high-achievers have is justly earned. “He was born on third base and thought he hit a triple,” Ann Richards famously quipped of George H.W. Bush; well, the typical meritocrat is born on third base, hustles home, and gets praised as if he just hit a grand slam.

But even as it restratifies society, the meritocratic order also insists that everything its high-achievers have is justly earned. “He was born on third base and thought he hit a triple,” Ann Richards famously quipped of George H.W. Bush; well, the typical meritocrat is born on third base, hustles home, and gets praised as if he just hit a grand slam.

As a consequence, meritocrats are often educated to be bad leaders, and bad people, in a very specific way — a way of arrogant intelligence unmoored from historical experience, ambition untempered by self-sacrifice. The way of the “best and the brightest” at the dawn of the technocratic era and the “smartest guys in the room” decades later, the way of the arsonists of late-2000s Wall Street and the “move fast and break things” culture of Silicon Valley.

The one huge reason the Victorian Liberals got annihilated (and why it will happen again)

The one huge reason the Victorian Liberals got annihilated (and why it will happen again), by Lucas Rosas.

The Victorian state election was a humiliating annihilation for the Liberals .. who … suffered a huge swing against them with rich voters as well.

This continues a trend seen in the recent by-election for the Sydney electorate of Wentworth and more broadly over the last decade where the rich are increasingly abandoning their traditional affiliation for the Liberal Party and are instead voting for the ALP and the Greens. …

Over the course of the last half century the children of the rich have been increasingly educated in classrooms on university campuses. These university campuses have evolved to the point that nearly the entire humanities faculty on every campus in the nation is staffed by lecturers not simply of the far left but the extreme left. … These days any even vaguely non-left leaning professor (and even some more moderate leftist ones) need to keep their heads down to avoid being ostracised and, inevitably, unemployed. …

Over and over again the Australian right has refused to face the obvious reality that if you let your enemies teach your children and grandchildren how to view the world your enemies will eventually win.

Ignatius of Loyola the founder of the Jesuits used to say that if you gave him a boy till the age of 7 and he would give you the man. The entire right side of the Australian political spectrum has been handing over its children to be brainwashed by activists from the furthest left ten per cent of the population for 12 to 18 years of their lives and then wonders why decade after decade their philosophies, political ideas and the values they hold dear continue to lose ground.

Without removing leftism from the education system there can be no victory. That is the most important battleground, the most vital stronghold in the culture war. Without it sanity will not prevail, and the fantasies of the deluded will continue to thrive.

Same goes for the ABC.

Santa says renewables “push down prices”. Sydney Morning Herald believes him.

Santa says renewables “push down prices”. Sydney Morning Herald believes him. By Joanne Nova.

Finally, No really, renewables are so cheap we can switch to them and change the global climate for free.

This is a new study by the kind of “independent” group that is totally dependent on Big Gov handouts. It compares Australian prices to other obscenely expensive countries and finds that “renewables push down prices”. Compared to what? Not compared to nations with cheap electricity. And not compared to most of the last thirty years in Australia before we added all the unreliable gear. …

If renewables actually reduced average prices, this would be a first. Around the world, the more intermittent generators you have, the more you have to pay for electricity.

Say it again: there is no country on Earth with lots of solar and wind power and cheap electricity.

Australian history:

While solar and wind energy is free in the sense that you don’t have to pay the Sun or dig up wind from underground, the energy is widely dispersed rather than concentrated. So we need to deploy a lot of machinery over wide areas to collect the energy — and that’s expensive.

Wind and solar are intermittent, so base-load coal or nuclear stations need to be kept running to back them up — and that’s expensive.

Riots in Paris The police underestimated the madness of the crowd

Riots in Paris: The police underestimated the madness of the crowd. By Claire Berlinski.

The Gilets Jaunes, or Yellow Jackets … claim to be leaderless and unaffiliated with any party, politician, or unions. They are mostly working- and middle-class people from France’s abandoned rural provinces. …

I spent Saturday speaking to the Gilets Jaunes near the Bastille, where I figured I’d have a good vantage point on a traditional protest site. I walked with them as they slowly made their way to the city hall, or Hôtel de Ville. It was obvious from a single glance that these weren’t Parisians, but rural people who couldn’t afford to buy expensive Parisian clothes or get chic haircuts. I instantly understood why Macron rubs them the wrong way. They looked worn out; their hands and faces were lined; they were mainly in late middle-age. They seemed to be decent, respectable, weary people who had worked hard all their lives, paid their taxes, and played by the rules.

They couldn’t have seemed less disposed to violence, nor more apolitical. They were respectful of the police, and vice-versa. As cops drove by, relaxed, the Gilets Jaunes smiled at them, like kids excited about their first trip to the big city, waved at the officers, and gave them the thumbs-up. The cops reciprocated. The sentiment was fraternal. “We’re all weary, overtaxed working men,” they were saying to each other. “We’re on the same side.”

I concluded they were just what they were advertised to be: family men and women who couldn’t make ends meet and who were tired of Macron’s attitude. Why this protest, why now, I asked? The fuel tax was just the straw that broke the camel’s back, they said; it made the difference between “able to make ends meet, barely,” and “not able to make ends meet.” It had just been getting steadily worse every year since the economic crisis began. They had run out of hope. …

People at the Charles de Gaulle Étoile saw something else entirely. There, the police were physically overwhelmed by about 5,000 Gilets Jaunes who had come explicitly prepared to do violence. … The rioter demographics were surprising. They were mainly aged 30-40, the police reported — a bit old for rioting, you’d think. They were “socially well-inserted” into the movement, but unlike the majority of the protesters, they had come with the goal of breaking and smashing things, rejecting the authority of the state and its symbols as savagely as they could. Of the 378 people taken into custody on Saturday, only 33 were minors. Most were rural men.

Yellow Vest protesters demand MORE from Macron – even after President caved in with £9billion of tax cuts

Yellow Vest protesters demand MORE from Macron – even after President caved in with £9billion of tax cuts, by Chris Pleasance.

Yellow Vest protesters demanded even more concessions from Emmanuel Macron on Tuesday even after he caved in to their demands for more pay and lower taxes with a £9billion spending splurge on Monday night. …

Meanwhile thousands of students angered by Macron’s education reforms joined the Yellow Vests on the streets for a ‘black Tuesday’ of unrest, further complicating matters for the French President.

And even Macron’s traditional allies in Europe warned they will be ‘closely monitoring’ his spending plans to check whether they fall within EU limits. …

Protesters gathered around TV sets across France on Monday night to hear Macron promise a seven per cent rise in the minimum wage, an end to tax and surcharges on overtime and pensions, and tax-free bonuses. …

But opponents said this uncosted spending bonanza would not prevent thousands of protestors taking part in a fifth weekend of action, planned for Saturday.

Jean-Luc Melenchon, leader of the far-Left France Unbowed party, said: ‘Emmanuel Macron thought he could hand out some cash to calm the citizens’ insurrection that has erupted. I believe that Act Five will play out on Saturday.’