From Our Own Correspondent May Day in Paris passed off without any violent or striking incidents. In recent years peaceful citizens have awaited the dawn of May Day with fear in their hearts so that this year's comparative quiet, while it gratified many people, has left others wondering.
• The Popular Front has therefore proved that it can control its members, and whatever the Right Wing reaction is to this discovery it is clear that they must treat the Popular Front's organisation with a new respect. Though by no means an insignificant minority, the Right Wing is chock-ablock with diverse elements, which make parallel organisation and order impossible.
What of the Future ?
May Day has been a feather in the cap of the Popular Front in this way, but the demonstrations dfd little to solve the question of its future.
Discontent among the workers can be traced directly to the Paris Exhibition, the opening of which has had to be postponed from May 1 to the end of the month.
Organisation in this field has failed. The Exhibition was planned to prove the victory of The Popular Front over Fascism. Had it been ready on schedule this dream might have been acclaimed as fact, but the men employed on its construction refused . to work more than a forty-hour week without a promise from the Government of further lucrative jobs when the buildings were finished.
Grounds for Grumbling
The big contracts demanded by the men have now been indefinitely postponed by the
Government in spite of their promises.
Another opportunity for grumbling lies in the Government's refusal, through finans cial straits, to grant superannuation to workmen who have reached the retiring age. For the first time a deaf ear hag been'turned to the cries of " Let the rich pay!"
Nevertheless I have not the least doubt that a general election at present would inciintain the Popular Front in power and even show an increase in its site47rplerS.
M. Blum, the Premier, is expected to define the Government's foreign policy today at the opening of the new Parliamentary session. No notice has been taken in the last few weeks of Spain in spite of the outcry to save Madrid.
Slum's End Predicted
A further factor that bodes evil for the Government comes from the Ministry of Finance where it is feared that the new social laws may upset the fiscal policy if the masses continue to ignore continuous advice to remain calm.
The end of the Blum Cabinet has been predicted. It is possible that he and his supporters have their hours of discouragement, yet any such prediction would be premature.
In moderate circles in the Senate, it is estimated that the Government will not survive June, and the most optimistic give it until the end of the Exhibition.
After the fall of the Government, the reaction of the masses cannot be predicted. The problem may be stated in these terms: The forces of the Right are not strong enough to break the present Government, which is supported by legal rights, a parliamentary majority, and an electoral majority which is still faithful.
Bankruptcy or Revolution ?
Defeat, then, can only come from two sources. Either the country will go bankrupt, which no sincere patriot can want; or the Left extremists will succeed in stirring up the masses. This is in no way improbable. M. Blum denies it, but blind forces are stronger than men's wills, and an organised working class is nothing but a machine at the mercy of the first agitator who knows how to use it.
In France the organisation of the masses is at the moment on a revolutionary basis.