Art Goldhammer and I recently traded a back and forth and back about Sarkozy’s handling of the financial crisis, and France’s EU presidency in general. I think this takeaway from a NY Times piece on same is a decent synthesis of our differening perspectives:
Now word comes that Sarkozy’s Union for the Mediterranean, which kicked off with a successful summit this past July, has gotten bogged down in the details as well.
Thefascinating thing about Sarkozy is that, for a politician whosedetailed grasp of dossiers is legendary (Ségolène Royal described thefact that “he knows everything” as both his greatest strength and hisgreatest weakness in the 2007 election), he remains a broadbrushstrokes kind of guy when it comes to actual governing. He’s reallythe perfect incarnation of the presidency in the internet age, busyadding posts to his blog while the rest of the pack furiously links tohis last entry. He’s been called the “hyper-president,” but I’d sayhe’s more the “hyperlink-president.” The difference of course beingthat successful governing is more than a question of traffic statistics.