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The rising rightist Europe?



During the French president election many observers have on several occasions claimed that the outcome of the French election is a good indication of how European politics will develop in the near future. While I was suspicious of this - claiming it to be a simple assumption without any substantial ground, It seems as though it at least in some sense, is a reasonable assumption. Since Sarkozy was elected, we have seen a greater influence from the rightist movements in Europe - This does not mean that there is a clear majority in every European country. It simply means that there is an increasing support for a more liberal market and the righist parties.

Has anyone else noticed this current trend? Scandinavian countries, who are mainly known for their welfare-state, have recently adopted the same European trend of looking for libertarianist alternatives. (a way of saying, people have started voting for a bit more rightist parties)
Another question which might not be directly related to this - I am not quite sure; But given that this trend is in fact real, shouldn't the European media cover the elections of other European countries more closely? I think it is nearly absurd that people know of the president candidates in the USA, but don't know who Sarkozy is - for instance.