Friday, May 26, 2006

And they’re all on scholarship too

Why bother?

Why raid for their documents under anti-trust when you just have to read the paper? They’re still virtual state monopolies!

EU antitrust officials have raided around 20 of the biggest European energy firms in six member states, under suspicion of abusing their market position.

France's Gaz de France, Germany's RWE and E.ON, Austria's OMV and Belgium's Fluxys were among those involved in the "surprise inspections" reported by the European Commission on Wednesday (17 May), along with gas companies in Italy and electricity firms in Hungary.

Brussels regulators were trying to find out whether the firms were guilty of "restrictive business practices and/or abuse of a dominant market position," particularly concerning access to pipelines and storage facilities, commission spokesman Jonathan Todd informed.
Further in the scam and PR exercise parading as a nation state, the EU has been paying journalists per diems to follow the (now bebunked due to the blatent crassness of the French exception) legislative traveling circus to Strasbourg:
The program is being criticized by some members of Parliament who have themselves recently come under pressure to give up generous perks.

The funding for journalists can include payment of a first-class round- trip train ticket or an economy-class plane ticket to Strasbourg from any of the 25 EU countries and a daily stipend of €100 to cover hotel, food and entertainment over two days.

About 60 journalists from across the bloc are invited to Strasbourg each month under the program, which is administered by parliamentary offices in EU member states. Media organs that have benefited from the subsidies in the past include RTBF of Belgium, RTE of Ireland, ERT of Greece and ORF of Austria, among dozens of others, EU sources said.

Attempts to contact these organizations for comment Tuesday were unsuccessful
Garsh! I wonder why? Someone alert the media!, rather the ones that aren’t on the payroll to write uncritical pap.
In other words, training scriblers to explain “how I learned to stop worrying, and learned to love the tax”.
Under the deal, member states gave €2 billion of "new money" on top of the €862.4 billion agreed in December, while another €2 billion was shuffled around within the accounts system to raise funds for MEP-favoured policies.

Dusty old paintings, empty opera houses, and other useless trinkets

Zeropa is made of this. Some take on fluff. Others take on real problems. Others still say screw this shithole and all the dusty knick-knacks that go with it:

Get over it, bitch. Shit happens.

Europe will convert, kicking and screaming like the afraid old woman she has become, but will convert nonetheless.

My Graphic Novel Is Out

My graphic novel, General Leonardo, is in bookstores all over France.

Update: la signature ci-dessous est remise à une date ultérieure.

Erik Svane et Dan Greenberg dédicaceront leur nouvel album au Parc Leonardo da Vinci du Clos-Lucé (Amboise) en juin.

Lire le résumé et voir un extrait de l'album

Urban Legends About Saddam and Other Iraqi Falsehoods

French President Jacques Chirac, February 2003: "There is a problem -- the probable possession of weapons of mass destruction by an uncontrollable country, Iraq. The international community is right . . . in having decided Iraq should be disarmed."
While Larry Elder reminisces about various VIPs' beliefs (and certitudes) regarding Iraq's WMD, Peter Wehner reminds us of
the urban legends we must counter, else falsehoods become conventional wisdom. And what a strange world it is: For many antiwar critics, the president is faulted for the war, and he, not the former dictator of Iraq, inspires rage. The liberator rather than the oppressor provokes hatred. It is as if we have stepped through the political looking glass, into a world turned upside down and inside out.

They just aren’t any good at it

Lefties try hoaxes and stunts in politics all the time, but much like the ginning up a fake United States Army Ranger or a mock US pro-Bush campaign group, they just don’t know how. It’s always betrayed in the vocabulary if not the terminology itself, as found with a fake political rap act ginned up by some lefties in France:

« En 1998, le groupe propose un morceau pour l'hymne de la coupe monde de football : "Marre des racailles et des nègres" qui sera finalement refusé par la FIFA. Le groupe se retire alors en corrèze pour composer le maxi : "Croix de lorraine" qui sortira en 2000 sur le label "Catholic records", un maxi totalement dédié au général de Gaulle et à l'église catholique, comme en témoignent les morceaux "Coq gaullois" ou "Un Christ court dans la nuit". »

In 1998, the group proposed a theme song for the World Cup: “Enough of the rabble and negros” which FIFA finally refused. The group then replied with something to raise the stakes in 2000 with “The Cross of Lorraine” which will be published by “Catholic Records”, and completely dedicated to General de Gaulle and to the Catholic church, with the tracks “Rooster of Gaulle” and “Christ runs the night”.
Not knowing much about civil society outside of their bubble, they mix up concepts to tar one with the sin of the other – mixing faith (positive to all but them) with racism (negative to all), patriotism (positive to some of them) with religion (positive to some of them.) That sort of satire gives away their position, because it shows what they wish Conservatives would actually be like. They're hoping for a geek-meme or something like it will send people their way.

The only problem is that in their lack of sophistication and lack of capacity for empathy they direct this attention at nothing.

Remember – you aren’t cool enough, so drink the kool-aid and be a leftist...

When you look at “The People’s Cube,” for example, there is satire which actually tells you what they disagree with. The images above and below by “The Yes men” from what is meant to be funny, and a "guide" to dealing with Conservatives which says nothing intelligible other than that there is something relevant in having a distaste for grooming and shows a desire to promote effected speech that suburbanite kids think is genuinely “urban” - among do-gooders without any life experience, this is code for non-white people.

Meaningful politics, indeed. Especially for a politcal movement that draws Stepin Fetchit caricatures of Condoleeza Rice.

In reality it’s condescending to any urban dweller such as this blogger and most of humanity. It says nothing which is politically substantial, and depends on the fact that you just know what the associations are. The reason for the tacit communications is because it’s all unmentionable and extremely vulgar. It's largely made up of slander or is as mendacious as bellowing out “Bush planned the 9/11 attacks” or “it’s the OIL MEN who make gas cost more.”

It is spaghetti thrown at the wall in the hope that some will stick. It's an effort to train frustrated young minds that their presumed political opposites are something of another species.

They are quite literally Aping, just as a racist would disengage the real person from the imaginary demon they want you to see. It’s a way of making social and economic concepts just not matter. It's a discussion killer that replaces reason with emotion which is far easier to manipulate in people with little life experience using non-politics to do your politics for you.

And it sucks.

Have a nice day

Thursday, May 25, 2006

EU's idea of a free market

The Zeropean Union is set to give up in its fight with Fwance over strategic yogurt production.

Who says France's influence is waning?

French influence shining bright. As bright as a fireball from an exploding truck bomb in front of a synagogue. Signed Walid, French youth from Lyon.

Zapatero pyromane pompier

Looks like the mass amnesty given to illegals in Spain has created something of a backdraft. Having stoked the fire, Spain looks to the EU for help.

"Europe has to wake up and stop staring at its belly button". Miguel Becerra, a policy advisor of the Spanish government, speaking of the arrival of refugees from Africa. The skank is not staring at her belly button. The skank is staring at the infected, infested, puss filled, suppurating piercing in her belly button.

Zacarias and Osama

With Osama bin Laden claiming Zacarias Moussaoui's innocence in the 9-11 attacks, the French seem to be smirking that those clueless Yanks have (again) sent an innocent man to prison. It does not seem to have occurred to those paragons of justice, virtue, and the European way (such as Eric Fottorino) to rail against al Qaeda about the injustice (and the baseness) of the timing of a message that could easily have been issued before the verdict.

What Courage! What a Sense of Initiative!

Porter des "dreads", c'est cool. Cette coiffure affiche une ouverture aux autres — particulièrement à ceux qui sont aujourd'hui victimes de propos et de comportements nauséabonds — et permet de se poser en citoyen du monde.

… Les nattes, apparentées à la crinière léonine, marquent donc une forme d'africanité et de naturalité ostentatoires. Pour certains, les dreadlocks manifestent un rejet des canons esthétiques occidentaux.
How do today's youth mark their openness, show solidarity for the poor and oppressed, and fight against injustice? As Véronique Cauhapé explains, they do it in (hair) style…

Meanwhile, the French have more lessons to give us…

By les pigeons in the drawing room with a candlestick

TV Ad, revised

When Chinese president Hu Jintao's visited Paris, Falungong practitioners were arrested so as not to get in the way of Chirac’s sales pitch.

Little did Chirac know that Hu prefers Risk.

Original ad
the fuse is lit!

Wednesday, May 24, 2006

Hatred of America – over anything, and 24/7

Have fun trying to hector citizens about ‘human rights’ in China, Spanky.

Serguie, Mr. Anti-anything

Andrew Ian Dodge reports more of the same dopeyness from Old Blighty.

Remember, it's just a movie

Paris, 2010. An isolation wall surrounds the ghetto cities. What, ... you mean it's NOT an apartheid wall?!? I'm confused.

Never mind the bollocks your Western roots, it's the Sex Pistols new boss man

"Ben Laden affirme que Moussaoui n'a aucun lien avec les attentats du 11-Septembre (Bin Laden confirms that Moussaoui is not linked to 9-11)".

His master's voice. Le Monde Al Jazira on the Seine celebrates the arrival of Zacarias Moussaoui's new celebrity lawyer in grand fashion. The boys (and the girls) in the 9-3 (Nine-three or Neuf-trois for the franchouilles) are as happy as can be, hopping about like Palestinians on 9-11.

Plus ça change ...

Marine Le Pen, heir to her father's National Front throne, has lashed out at Nicolas Sarkozy, calling him "the little American" and "the ultra free market capitalist, obsessed by George Bush". It's good to see that from the extreme Left (anti-USA and Jew hating) to the extreme right (anti-USA and Jew hating), French politics provides us with an oasis of stability in this chaotic world.

An Axis of Evil

Joining the anti-civilizational branch of the left, American bigot and traitor David Duke inciting being warmly received by a Syrian dial-a-mob. Dont be fooled people don't gather in Syria or territory they control without political approval.

Jew hunting in Paris

The natives are restless and they is goin' a huntin'. 'Tribu Ka', composed of Elijah Muhammad wannabees and cheap French knock-offs of the Black Panthers, recently went Jew hunting in Paris and documented their little escapade.

The report starts off talking about Jewish groups' deceptive methods and details the Tribu Ka's expedition into some gyms located in the rue Trévise in Paris -- all this to locate and identify Jewish Defense League members in retribution for some imagined slights supposedly taking place during the recent march in memory of Ilan Halimi, that Jewish cellphone salesman.

The report ends with a warning threat that the Jews will be identified and followed and will be obliged to leave their hiding places like roaches fleeing the light of truth and justice.

It should be noted that 'Tribu Ka' is associated with French comic Dieudonné and are part of the growing anti-Semite axis (including Holocaust negationists) which gravitates around the Théâtre de la Main d'Or, theatre owned and operated by Dieudonné's production company.

Merci à Eric B.

Orbital pork

When you’re talking Euro-business, you’re talking bloated (selected) ‘champion’ industries engaging in long term projects that hang around the taxpayer’s neck. The usual ritual involves delays, cost over-runs, and the requisite overturned indictment of an executive a few years later.

Far from stimulus, they weigh down the healthy parts of the economy. A “make work” project is still, after all, a “make work” project. In this case done up with a dozen flags, an alphabet soup of state managed entities in contracting kumbaya with the suffering taxpayer’s last “€”.

Then again, there’s always a breath-taking example of still not getting it. Such as has been found with the €3.4 billion Galileo GPS project. The reason all of the services they plan to offer sound so familiar, is because they already exist.

The fuse is lit!

Tuesday, May 23, 2006

Getting to the Bottom of the Clearstream Scandal

Thanks to la Baf, the fishy Villepin-Sarkozy feud is explained in layman's terms (film).


Here are two [1] [2] of the funniest comments on a posting we have received in some time.

Good-o, good-o!

Market value of hostages up

It’s taken six months to break the taboo of discussing the matter in the European press, but the notion has finally caught on.

Michael Moore, a Liberal Democrat foreign affairs spokesman, said: “These governments have created a kidnappers’ charter. Everyone from outside Iraq working in the country becomes more vulnerable as a result.”
Le Figaro and The Times (UK) report on what emerged as an obvious embarrassment on the part of the French, German, and Italian governments: the paying of hostage ransom – even to the point where the hostages are in some cases deliberately playing into the thin political motives and gains of the hostage takers.
“In theory we stand together in not rewarding kidnappers, but in practice it seems some administrations have parted with cash and so it puts other foreign nationals at risk from gangs who are confident that some governments do pay,” one senior envoy in the Iraqi capital said.
Ray and David of David’s Medienkritik, as well as Clarsonimus, the mysterious writer behind “Observing Hermann” has been on this one for a while:
“After all, it was no coincidence that the two Leipzig-based engineers were kidnapped immediately after the German hostage Susanne Osthoff was freed in Iraq and while speculations were circulating in the media about whether or not ransom money had been paid.”

Wow, how true. There really does seem to be some kind of a connection here. I mean, in the interest of all of those tens of thousands of Germans down there in that awful hornet’s nest of Iraq we do need to maybe step back and take a moment and realize that we are only endangering them by speculating about the ransom money the German government so obviously and eagerly pays anybody willing to ask for it.
In other words, the taking of hostages that companies and governments has become all that more appealing.

The fuse is lit!

The failed model

All the European Social Model has accomplished is to create household chores.

Another myth is that Americans work more than Europeans. By now, a wealth of studies have found very little difference in work and leisure times between American and European employees, once one takes into the account the hours spent working in household production of trivial home services.

A January 2003 study from IZA-Berlin compared Americans and Germans and found that "...overall working time is very similar on both sides of the Atlantic. Americans spend more time on market work but Germans invest more in household production." According to the authors "...these differences in the allocation of time can be explained by differences in the tax-wedge and wage differentials."

The tax-wedge is a measure of tax burden that combines income tax, employment tax and consumption taxes to assess the overall effect of government levies on household income.
It goes back to the creeping growth of government justifying it’s ubiquity by getting into every business it can, and then placing a burden on the population to pay for it. As one of the least efficient spenders of the change they’ve shaked out taxpayer’s pockets, one need not be proponent of small government to see that government at a certain scale is a structural economic problem.
Conny Olovson of Stockholm University conducted a comparative analysis of the effects of tax regimes in Sweden and the US on labor market decisions by the households. The study found that while "market work per person is roughly 10% higher in the US than in Sweden, including home production on the side of work hours reduces the difference to approximately 1%". Just as before, higher labor and consumption taxes were responsible for the majority of the observed differences in the household decision to purchase or to supply home services using their own labor.
Read the whole thing by Constantin Gurdgiev here.

The fuse is lit!

Monday, May 22, 2006

Trader's Call to Arms

Eugene Schlanger, the Wall Street Poet featured on, the Wall Street Journal, and the NY Times, recites "Trader's Call to Arms" during a recent NYC reading.

José Bové et les altermondialistes veulent nous faire revenir à ça

Merci à Eric B.

Dead Tree Roundup

While minimizing this news item, The Guardian had to stress:

Another survivor, Zurmina Bibi, said around 10 people, including three or four children, had been killed in her home. "There were dead people everywhere," she said.

Atta Mohammad, an elderly man who accompanied a group of wounded civilians to the hospital, told Reuters he believed up to 35 civilians had been killed and more than 40 wounded.
Oddly enough, every other outlet reported 16 civilian and 80 Taliban combatant casualties after citing civilian reports that jived more closely with that of the Afghan government, but hey, that’s not stopping the Graun from not mentioning an inconvenient truth about this shaggy shrub:
[Captured,] Mollah Dadullah, who is reported to be one of the leaders of the Taliban in Afghanistan, was captured in Kandahar.

Almost 190 Taliban members have been killed in operations lasting since Wednesday [17-May] in Afghanistan.
It seems they also can’t quite identify a cabal when they see one either.

The fuse is lit!

Regulating civilization (as if that will accomplish something)

The right to work features in the Opinion Journal, while the IHT covers the novelty of actually discussing the lobbying of the French legislature – government has finally met its’ match.


In France, it takes lots of work merely to be allowed to work. Just ask Louis Vuitton.

The iconic luxury goods maker recently hired 70-odd new employees so that starting last month it could keep its flagship store on Paris's Champs Elysées open on Sundays. You'd think a country with 10% unemployment, and more than double that in the immigrant projects that went up in flames last fall, would be thrilled to see a private company create new jobs. You'd be wrong.

The problem is that French labor laws put strict restrictions on Sunday operations. Though the churches are mostly empty and France is a "secular" republic, the Sabbath is sacred.

To survive in this market, one needs to be creative. Louis Vuitton found a loophole in the rules, or so it thought. The city of Paris makes exceptions to the no-work-on-Sunday rules for restaurants, tobacco shops, owner-operated stores and -- eureka! -- museums. So Louis Vuitton built a "cultural space"
The quickest way to sfuff anything, including ‘culture’, creativity, and invention is to put it under civic management. Like the advent of academic majors in things like jazz improvisation indicates little more than their mummification.

One silly aspect of having ministries for Culture, Sport, and other things government has no business being in is that it enshrines corporate access – as ‘national treasures’ and ‘champions’ FNAC, Vivendi, and Virgin get special access while lobbyists acting on behave of upstarts and public interest groups get to pound sand.

On the other end of the scale, Internet-savvy activists made their opinions known en masse by e-mail.

"Rarely in parliamentary life have those elected by the nation - deputies and senators - been subjected to so many letters, e-mails, menaces and pressures," Michel Charasse, a senator since 1981, said during the debate, to resounding applause from his colleagues. "I would ask the Senate staff to rigorously clean the corridors of the lobbyists from all sides who jump on us as soon as we leave the hall."

Some legislators criticized the presence of representatives from two music retailers, Fnac and Virgin, who entered the National Assembly during debate on a law that would affect them. The store representatives, who were admitted special entry wearing badges issued by the Ministry of Culture, had been brought in to an area normally off-limits to demonstrate legal downloading, culture officials later told the newspaper Libération.
The question I have, is how do you get to be a ‘cultural official’ and what actual role could they possibly have?

The fuse is lit!

So That Explains It

"All those black cars and those bodyguards with their earpieces, you start feeling afraid."
A neighbor of Ayaan Hirsi Ali (a sympathetic one, at that) makes the neighborhood's courageous attitude perfectly understandable in one of Jean-Pierre Stroobants's two articles about the Dutch (sic) human rights activist.

Once you begin competing politically on the subject of pulling troops out, you give the enemy an enormous advantage on the ground

Sylvie Kauffmann and Natalie Nougayrède have an interview with Henry Kissinger in Le Monde.

Unfortunately, This Seems to Confirm the MSM Was Right About the U.S. Armed Forces' Difficulties in Meeting Enlistment Goals

As war with Iran looms, the Denver Post's Bruce Finley points out the difficulties the US armed forces are undergoing in getting recruits and meeting (re)enlistment figures.

A Horrific Waste

"What's going on here and now is not to be compared with the witch trials of that time" [said Molly, Elia Kazan's wife, in "A Life"]. "Those witches did not exist. Communists do. Here and everywhere in the world. It's a false parallel. Witch hunt! The phrase would indicate that there are no Communists in governement, none in the arts, none sending money from Hollywood to 12th Street."
Samuel Blumenfeld has another tear-jerker about the tragedies that befell Hollywood during the McCarthy era, calling it nothing less than a horrific waste. For a true horrific waste, one would do well to cross the Russian border — the very society that was being defended by the "victims" of the "witchhunt" as a paradise on Earth — where the maximum penalty, and the sufferings, went far beyond one year in (a relatively comfortable) jail. (More trivial details such as these are explained in La bannière étalée.)

Sunday, May 21, 2006

Self-absorption and the Arts

As if you couldn’t tell. Lou is making sure everyone is having some of that ‘total information awareness.’

The fuse is lit!

Bias? What bias?

A typical day at Auntie’s house:

Britain’s goals in Afghanistan are mere fiction, a discussion of political left and right is announced with the forgone conclusion brought to you by a roadsign, and of course weeping mother Gaia to force open your checkbook.

In other words: We are all idiots. We may not think for ourselves. Our betters in the media will do that for us.

The fuse is lit!

Hopefully, they'll be invited to Late Night with Conan

The Eurovision performers that blew French songwriter Corneille out of the water. Check out the Finnish flag hat on the lead singer and the Chuck Berry duckwalk by the guitarist at the beginning. This was taped during an earlier elimination stage of the contest. Here Lordi takes on the rest of the European competition. Last night's performance is here. The video quality is not as good but you can hear the snooty French State TV commentators (including the indéboulonnable Michel Drucker) snickering and saying that with these guys there is no way that Finland will win the contest for the first time. Backstage with the BBC when the result is announced. Corneille ? Corneille, t'es là ?

Zeropean kids getting ready to return their toys

They're so cute when they're small. It's a shame they ever grow up. Heh.

French youth active in Ramallah

It's true, it's true!