YESTERDAY! TODAY! TOMORROW!

YESTERDAY – TODAY – TOMORROW
(HIER – AUJOURD’HUI – DEMAIN)

« The Napoleonic Idea is the reconstitution of French society shaken by fifty years of revolutions, the reconciliation of order and liberty, the rights of the people and the principles of authority.

In the midst of two hostile parties, one of which looks only to the past, and the other only to the future, she takes the old forms and the new principles.

In order to build solidly, she founds her system on principles of eternal justice, and crushes beneath her feet the reactionary theories born from the excesses of parties.

She replaces the hereditary system of old aristocracies by a hierarchy which, while ensuring equality, rewards merit and guarantees order.

She finds strength in liberty, because she wisely prepares its reign by building large foundations before beginning construction on the building itself.

She follows neither the uncertain march of a party, nor the moods of the crowds. She commands by reason, she leads because she marches first.

Flying above political cliques, exempt from any nationalist prejudice, she sees in France only brothers easy to reconcile, and in the different nations of Europe the members of the same great family […]”

… The Napoleonic Idea is not a warlike ideal, but a social, industrious, commercial and humanitarian idea. If for some men she appears still surrounded by the thunder of combat, it is because in effect she was too long enveloped by the smoke of cannons and the dust of battles. But today the clouds have blown away, and we can see, through the glory of arms, a civil glory, greater still and more lasting.”

Louis-Napoleon Bonaparte (Napoléon III), Idées Napoléoniennes, 1839

THE FIVE GREAT PRINCIPLES OR THE PILLARS OF BONAPARTISM

CALL TO THE PEOPLE OR DIRECT DEMOCRACY
« The principle of all sovereignty belongs to the Nation. No body, no individual can exercise an authority that does not come from her. »
Article III of the Declaration of the Rights (and Duties) of Man and of the Citizen.

YESTERDAY
Napoleon and Napoleon III always made the people the base of their system, because whatever is done without the people is illegal.

Under our two emperors the exercise of democracy not only involved plebiscites (referenda by which the people approved or disapproved the policy of the government), but also by the right of each citizen to present a petition to the head of State, to have his complaints heard, or (under the Second Empire) the right to appeal directly to the Senate if he felt that a law violated the Constitution. The creation of the Council of State, of the prud’hommes and even the presence of police agents (whose function was to observe public opinion, rather than denounce those who criticised the regime) contributed to this tendancy to put the citizens at the service of a modernising State close to them and supported by them.

TODAY
We, Bonapartists of the 21st century, demand the instauration of an annual voting day, on which any citizen with a sufficient number of signatures could propose a measure by referendum. We also want the will of the people to be respected following referenda organised by governments. We therefore condemn the project to have adopted by parliaments the constitution rejected by the French and Dutch in the 2005 referendum, and by the Irish People in 2008.

DEMAIN.
The future remains uncertain, but that is no reason to give up. We fight for you. If you want a Republic worthy of the name, if you want to establish a true democracy, join our cause!

SELF DETERMINATION
« The principle of all sovereignty belongs to the Nation. No body, no individual can exercise an authority that does not come from her. »
Article III of the Declaration of the Rights (and Duties) of Man and of the Citizen.

« I fought on pain of destruction »
Napoleon the Great, Emperor of the French.

YESTERDAY
Napoleon, contrary to some opinions, fought only to defend France against the coalitions organised by monarchies which aimed to restore the Old Regime. Napoleon III fought to defend freedom of religion in Palestine and China, and to support the Italians in their wish to throw off the domination of the Austro-Hungarian Empire and unite as a nation.

TODAY
Our attachment to the right of peoples to determine their own future is therefore not a sign of misplaced nationalism, but a question of respect for the ideas and values from which we benefit in the France and the Europe of today, and of respect for the sacrifice of those who have fought for them. Democracy means nothing if the people’s choices are not respected, or if those who decide our future are not those who live with the consequences of their decisions.

TOMORROW
It is for these reasons that we want a confederal Europe, in which each people could preserve not only its culture and identity, but also the fundamental laws that ensure that society functions. The maintenance of our public services, our right to be the masters of our own destiny, the role of the State as motor of industry and agriculture which permits it to protect our workers and farmers against the unrestrained competition which worsens unemployment and crushes local production… so many fundamental rights forgotten by a bureaucratic and anti-democratic “European construction”.

For Europe, we want to encourage legislation on a common environmental policy, in order to favour renewable energy and to fight pollution and global warming. We want a European policy that respects the right of each people to self-determination, according to the policy of nationalities dear to Napoleon and Napoleon III. This principle resurrected Poland (1806, and later 1919 and 1989), gave new life to Switzerland (1803, then 1849), created Italy (1796, 1805, and 1859) and Romania (1856 and 1862). We want it to create Europe.

SOCIAL PROGRESS

YESTERDAY
Napoleon and Napoleon III always made the welfare of the people their priority. Napoleon ensured a minimum wage by banning employers from lowering wages, in exchange for banning strikes. He also maintained the price of food (bread in particular) at a level affordable for even the poorest. Following riots after bad harvests in 1812, not only did he send troops to protect the bakers, he also organised two million rations of soup. He advanced money from his own pocket to allow employers in Lyons to pay their workers during the winter of 1806 – 1807, and for those of Amiens in 1811.

In 1809 Napoleon also created the first retirement pension funds and insurance funds for accidents guaranteed by the State. In 1806 he created the Councils of prud’hommes, instauring conciliation as the principle by which disputes between employers and employees would henceforth be settled. In 1811 he created the fire brigade, and in 1813 forbade child labour in mines. He also supported mutual aid associations, ancestors of our unions and mutuels, developed later by his nephew, Napoleon III…

Napoleon III, for his part, extended his uncle’s system of retirement pension funds, revived insurance funds for accidents, maintained a maximum price for bread until 1853, depenalised strikes, opened the process of participation of employees in the profits, capital and management of businesses. He is also one of the inventors of margarine, because he launched the research for a cheaper form of “butter”. Furthermore, he organised soup kitchens, doubled the State budget for welfare…

TODAY
Certain persons say that the French social system – a historical artefact – should disappear. For them, social security is a useless expense. For us, the issue is the welfare State which ensures the protection of our fellow citizens against unforeseen accidents, as much as it ensures us the admiration of our neighbours. A large part of the class of politicians would like us to believe that we should adopt an Americanised system, in which only the richest can afford proper treatment (according to the Americans themselves). A system closer to that of Great Britain? At a time when the British (those who can) apply for treatment in France? At the moment when their pension funds collapse?

TOMORROW
At a time when the majority of our politicians, almost all qualified from the same schools, supporters of identical programmes whatever the label that they wear, pass their time in deepening the debt of our welfare State and the national debt by selling off all those of our public services that make profits, we denounce this theft. These public services are yours. This welfare State is your heritage. It is your taxes and your labour that created them. It is the Bonapartists and their heirs who put them in place. We oppose the sale to individuals of what belongs to you by right. We are determined to preserve them for you, and for this we ask for your support.

AUTHORITY

YESTERDAY
« Liberty is the right to do whatever harms no one else.».
Article IV of the Declaration of the Rights (and Duties) of Man and of the Citizen.

We made a point of insisting on the respects of the Rights and Duties of citizens. Without rights, there can be no duties. Without duties there can be no rights. Society functions (or not), according to the respect (or not) of the rights and duties of each.

In a family, parents have a duty of care, love and discipline toward their children. Children, in return, have the duty to love, respect and (until they are independent) obey their parents. Every citizen has the legal duty to help those in danger, and to respect others. Employers and employees have a mutual duty of honesty and respect. We each have our right to our liberty, but also the duty not to abuse it by harming the freedom of others. But how many people do not respect these values, simply because they do not learn them?

Napoleon the Great and Napoleon III believed in the protective role of the State. The State, as the guarantor of the Constitution, and consequently of the rights and duties of each, has the role of social motor and referee. They both re-established respect for the law after troubled periods, in 1799 and 1851, as De Gaulle did in 1944 and 1958. They caused to be respected a certain number of rights (freedom of religion, equality before the law, freedom of speech) and of duties (tax, work, the respect of the duties of a citizen toward his family.)

TODAY

For the last thirty years, we have witnessed the drop in living conditions, the absence of respect for the values engraved on the public buildings (Liberty, Equality, Fraternity, Republic) and medals (Honour and Homeland) of our country. We observe a climate of violence, of fear and the rise of extremes of all kinds. Our movement believes that this is neither irreversable, nor an unavoidable consequence of immigration. It is the product of a system of education in which teachers are no longer allowed to controle their classes, in which civic instruction has been emptied of all notion of respect and civic duty, and in which our fire brigade, nurses and police are used as targets by former pupils to express the violence that the media and the absence of the authority of the State impose on them from the cradle onwards.

TOMORROW
The fight against crime and delinquency must concentrate on the protection of the most vulnerable in our society as much as that of all their fellow citizens and foreign residents. This combat must be accompanied by an advanced social programme, with the participation of all those who believe that they have rights, and therefore duties, in order to rebuild our country across the board. All individuals, social and humanitarian associations and services of the State must work together to save our country from violence, political extremism and the poverty that breeds them. It is also necessary to re-establish the teaching of civism, beginning with primary school, if not before.

REJECTION OF THE LEFT-RIGHT DIVIDE

YESTERDAY
Napoleon the Great and Napoleon III succeeded in rallying the immense majority of French people around their regime because they were above parties. They were not part of the factions that fought over power between them, like scavengers fighting over the carcass of a dying animal.

Napoleon declared that he belonged neither to the left (the Jacobins), nor the right (the Royalists). “I am national” he said. His policy of national unity allowed him, even according to his enemies, to put in place the reforms that the people demanded, tired of the repeated changes of regime that brought fresh troubles and retarded the rebuilding of the country. The laws, institutions and values upon which our suffering society leans today in order to remain upright, are the fruit of this central policy, which relied on the people and distrusted parties.

Napoleon III pursued the work of his uncle, with the support of men of the “left” and of the “right”. He succeeded in instauring the first accident insurance and retirement pension funds (starting in 1849) and also one of the most glorious and prosperous periods of the History of France… according to no less a man than Louis Pasteur.

TODAY
It is enough to read the press to see that the main newspapers are bought by the parties of the « left » and the « right ». It is enough to watch the news broadcasts to realise that reforms are systematically blocked. When the « left » proposes a reform, the « right » opposes it… and vice versa. Sometimes this opposition is justified, but it serves above all as a means of scoring points for one party or another. And until the parties agree on the colour of grass, the people need to find another way out.

TOMORROW
We reject the left-right divide that only serves to divide the French people and profits only to the political parties. We do not want to ban these parties. We prefer to restore the citizen to the centre of public affairs. We propose a government of national unity, direct democracy as we have explained elsewhere, the participation of all in politics – in the noble sense of the word – open to all, and the return of the notion of moderation as much as the principle of respect for the rights and duties of each of us. We fight for a coherent policy, because it is based on valid and simple ideas, patriotic, social and democratic.

That is to say, a BONAPARTIST policy.

Paul-Napoléon Calland
President of  the BONAPARTIST MOVEMENT

16 commentaires pour YESTERDAY! TODAY! TOMORROW!

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  2. Emanuel dit :

    Good to see the site functional. May I suggest as far as aesthetics are concerned – a less cluttered background? Block colours and/or less repitition of the image tile will provide a more polished and approachable site.

    More substantively, I would like to request the delivery of semi-periodic commentary as to the current state of affairs, particularly that of France; a political/economic regard for the present republic in reference to Bonpartist principles, drawing from the vast panoply of historic principles would be greatly appreciated.

    Merci et salutations.

    J'aime

  3. Paul Hutchins dit :

    From Bonapartism branched Kemalism in Turkey in the Twentieth Century and similar social-revamping movements in other parts of the world that still affect their societies today.. The Bonapartes were way ahead of their time.

    J'aime

  4. Korey Dufek dit :

    It’s too bad that today there are no leaders like Napoleon. We need someone who is not afraid to fight for liberty and justice « for all ».

    Aimé par 1 personne

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