Even the media recognizes that there has been a massive shift in the political divide in Europe, as in the USA, from Classical Liberal vs Socialist to Nationalist vs Globalist.
A Le Pen loss, however, will hardly be a knockout blow for populism — or a ringing vindication of the establishment.
If anything, the French campaign has solidified the new fracture lines in modern politics, which bear little relation to the relatively modest differences marking the old left-right divide. Instead, the choice voters face on Sunday illustrates the profound new chasm in the West: between those who favor open, globalized societies and others who prefer closed, nationalized ones.
“What’s the common ground between Macron and Le Pen? There is none. What we’re seeing is historic: a choice between two completely different modes of organizing a society,” said Madani Cheurfa, a professor of politics at Paris’s Sciences Po.
This transcontinental political transition is still much closer to the beginning than it is to the end. I discuss this in more detail in my post-French election Darkstream.