The photo below, published in the Mail, shows the crowd who flung eggs and worse at France's most unpopular politician, President Sarkozy, in Bayonne. The terrified little man was forced to hide in bar protected by riot police until he could emerge safely.
England, too, has a long history of disrespect that made the streets unsafe for those loathed by the crowds. In the eighteenth century the coaches of the wealthy could hardly cross central London without having their windows put in by stones - indeed, on one occasion even the King's coach was attacked by the mob, the King himself showered with broken glass. Gillray correctly satirised the incident as an attack on the (coach of) State, being driven over the broken body of Britannia through a storm of missiles flung by an angry crowd
And now again the political class are becoming too scared to emerge amongst the public. Unless you live in one of the key marginal constituencies, you won't see a politician at all at election time. The cabinet and shadow cabinet attend only carefully staged events with supporters and news cameras present. Studio audiences are carefully vetted and managed. Dissenters are excluded from party events. The political class is as insulated as Ceausescu from public anger, living in a make-believe parallel world created by the spin masters and marketeers. When they slip up, and the wrath of the public communicates itself to them, we see incidents like the French President fleeing in terror in Bayonne last week.