Saturday, June 30, 2007

Elections 2008: Democrazy

In Francesco Vezzoli's new movie, Jim Mulhall helps Bernard-Henri Lévy run as a Democratic candidate for the presidency of the United States in 2008, thus fulfilling the leftist Europeans' dream of having someone like-minded in the White House… (BHL's opponent: Sharon Stone!)
Jim Mulhall : Nous nous sommes placés dans le contexte d'une vraie campagne. Aux Etats-Unis, quand un candidat se lance, on lui explique en quoi va consister la course. C'est ce qu'on a essayé de faire avec Bernard : "OK, tu veux être président, voilà ce que tu dois faire pour plaire aux électeurs américains." En même temps, c'était bien d'avoir le regard de Francesco sur la manière dont on conduit une campagne politique. Un oeil critique, c'était important pour nous. … Un président américain doit organiser sa biographie pour qu'elle fasse sens. On a choisi des images très spécifiques, qui caractérisent un candidat démocrate moderne pour conduire une Amérique moderne. L'opposition à la guerre en Irak, mais en étant fort et sans concession sur la sécurité, pour ne pas laisser aux républicains le monopole du drapeau. Bernard a certains points dans sa biographie qui rappellent ces valeurs.

One hit wonder

Ses histoires de fesses flasques ont eu raison de son assise au sein du PS.

Where’s Dick Marty?

I wonder, will the EU’s secretive “Security Clearinghouse” get Dicked? He’s got to stop this immediately!

The group - which was set up in reaction to the 9/11 attacks in the US - is part of the EU's common foreign and security policy branch, with a December 2001 EU "common position" mandating that "information shall be exchanged between member states" to help curb terrorist financing.

Clearing House does not appear on any official EU listings of "working groups" - standard meetings of mid-ranking EU diplomats, which pre-agree EU decisions before they are adopted by EU ambassadors and, later down the line, rubber-stamped by EU ministers.
Then again, look at the part they want to make civilly “political”:
The group's main job is to decide, every six months or so, who should be on the EU's terrorist register and have their financial assets frozen, with the group meeting sometime this week to finalise contents of the next terror list before its formal adoption in early July.
What say, old bean? Do they get the treatment?

Friday, June 29, 2007

Sarkozy's "embedded spokesman"

"Pendant des années, j'ai biberonné du Madelin. A droite, c'était le seul qui moulinait vraiment. Mais j'ai compris qu'il n'aurait jamais le pouvoir, et Sarkozy m'a guéri de mon libéralisme théocratique."
The person in charge of Nicolas Sarkozy's communication department (aka the president's spokesman), explains Philippe Ridet in a page-long portrait, is David Martinon, a former deputy spokesman to foreign minister Hubert Védrine as well as a person once close to Alain Madelin until he understood that the closest thing in France to a free-market ideology would never gain power…


Given current usage, "bitch" is not strong enough of a translation into American English. I'd go with "cunt".

Shamnesty International

The NGO that's got to go.

BBC: Beach Break Channel

Flotsam and jetsam.

All the Same Buzzwords

From Pétain to PS

“European framework,” “tied to the land,” “struggle of the worker” – none of the arguments seems to change.

Thursday, June 28, 2007

The Lisbon Strategy is working splendidly

"For anyone whose dream is still some ideal of European unity, the mere fact that each competing camp won at this summit was, of itself, a defeat."

From Chicago to Bercy

"En une minute, j'ai compris que l'immense liberté dont j'avais bénéficié, comme patronne d'un groupe d'avocats autonome, était restée au bord du lac à Chicago."
Coming to France's finance ministry, writes Marion Van Renterghem, is Christine Lagarde, who was "chairman" of the Baker & McKenzie law firm in Illinois.

One thing to notice in the piece is that although she lived, and worked, for umpteen years in America, no American, coworker or other, is interviewed about Christine Lagarde; in typical Gallic journalistic fashion, only Frenchmen (and -women) are. (As usual, only those lucid beings can be counted on to say anything profound.)

The Generosity of Europe's Solidaristic Health Care Systems

In yet another example of ultra-successful health care program in a society whose legendary generosity, solidarity, avant-gardism that Michael Moore's Sicko was correct to praise over the rooftops (although French officials might simply be James Bond fans), we learn from Robert Solé that an invalid by the name of Jean-Claude Paris will be taken in charge for a daily amount of 700, no, 70 Euros (uh, wait a minute, lemme check that amount again)…

Typical French family gathering

Encore un qui voulait voter Hollande. Some unemployed loser who dressed up like a woman and prostituted himself wound up getting snuffed by his main squeeze. Vive la Fwance !

Qu'ils crèvent tous la gueule ouverte dans leur propre merde

57% of those animals that are called Palestinians have a favorable view of Bin Laden.

Wall Street Poet

Jules Crittenden asks "I wonder if al-Qaeda plans to put out any of Daniel Pearl’s haiku?" Terrorist detainees scratch rubbishy gibberish into styrofoam cups and find a US university press to gush over the stuff. Around the same time, an acknowledged American poet has to go to a French language publisher to be read.

More terrorist poetry here ...

Money in the Bank?

Who would put their money elsewhere than in Fwance?

Moral high ground

The Germans don't have it and wouldn't recognize it if it bit them in their EUtopic asses.

If They Want To Count Corpses, Why Not Count These Too?

Hint: not civilians.

Wednesday, June 27, 2007

EUtopia at its Best

A spate of purple helmet stories can’t be far off:

Leading NGO Human Rights Watch (HRW) has urged the EU and NATO to make its future peacekeeping operations in Kosovo subject to law, after a string of failures by existing "accountability" structures to investigate allegations of criminal behaviour by international personnel.
By “law” they seem to mean something they’d have a hand in writing, of course. That no-one ever elected HRW doesn’t seem to register any more in this one of their imperious declarations as any other one they’ve issues.
The EU effort - the biggest of its kind in the union's history - is to see 1,600 policemen and 72 civilian officials deploy in January, if UN talks on Kosovo's status end quickly. An EU preparatory office in Pristina - the EUPT - began work in April with 40 staff but has now grown to over 200 personnel, reports indicate.

The EU policemen will be supported by 16,000 soldiers drawn from 35 countries, including the US, Turkey and Ukraine, as well as most EU states. The military force - currently called KFOR - is under NATO command and has already been working alongside UNMIK since the end of the civil war eight years ago.
And to think that if deploying 1600 cops in their own back-yard for their own security isn’t a giant sacrifice in the interest of people in, say, South Africa and Thailand, imagine that it needs an “international” coalitions of 16 000 soldiers to back it up. 10 to 1, even when we all know that violence never solved anything!
But a fresh HRW report out Thursday (14 June) suggests the system is breaking down. In February 2006 the Ombudsperson lost his mandate to oversee international bodies. The human rights panel has not yet started work. The oversight committee last met in 2004. The UNMIK commission has been invisible so far.
Yup. You read that right: the controlling authority is being deemed by an NGO to be illegitimate to oversee and apply the law to alphabet soup “International bodies” and NGOs.

A two-state solution: just give up and let the NGOs administer the EU. Barring that, I’m sure temporary administration of the EU’s back yard by the UN might calm EUvian nerves over the state of their own administrative capacity. I suppose the wet dream for them would be blue helmets keeping the peace in Brussels, with all of its’ attendant zen and good PR juju.

Une "catastrophe sanitaire" et une "Omerta" : "L'hôpital a eu du mal à avouer ses bêtises"

"L'erreur, on peut la comprendre, même la pardonner, mais ce qui est inadmissible, c'est que rien n'a été fait pour soigner mon père. L'hôpital savait mais ne lui a donné aucune chance pour s'en sortir"
"On m'a menti" : Sandrine Blanchard has an article about the type of ultra-successful health care program that French government authorities didn't brag to Michael Moore about and that "Sicko" didn't tell the members of Michael Moore's fan club about. "Vous comprenez, dit [Jean-Luc Genay], l'hôpital Jean-Monnet a caché trop de choses, ils ont menti, alors on ne fait plus confiance."
Une "catastrophe sanitaire", a reconnu, le 8 juin, Roselyne Bachelot, la nouvelle ministre de la santé, dans un entretien accordé au Parisien. Un radiophysicien qui modifie le protocole de radiothérapie et se trompe dans le paramétrage, des médecins radiothérapeutes qui minimisent les plaintes des malades en les attribuant à des "complications classiques", des autorités locales qui ne mesurent pas l'ampleur de la crise... cette affaire comporte une chaîne incroyable d'erreurs et de défaillances.

"Tout ça, c'est à cause d'un manque de personnel pour faire fonctionner ce genre d'appareil, pense-t-il. Les machines, elles sont de plus en plus sophistiquées mais il faut des hommes pour les utiliser."

"C'est un péché d'orgueil de la part des médecins", considère M. Colombel. Mal suivis, peu écoutés, les malades "sont restés livrés à eux-mêmes", souligne l'IGAS. Solange Didierlaurent le confirme avec rage : "On a été abandonnés." Son père, âgé de 84 ans, est mort il y a quelques semaines.

…cette affaire dramatique est "révélatrice d'un dysfonctionnement dans la prise en charge de la souffrance des patients et d'un manque de démarche qualité". De son côté, Me Welzer parle d'un "dossier emblématique" qui illustre "la chape de plomb qui prévaut sur les erreurs médicales".

Le Monde Critic Eats Bad Mushrooms, Survives

Despite the fuss over prices. the critics have given Streisand, 65, a warm reception. Le Monde's review said that carping over ticket costs was an injustice where the New York diva was concerned. "Streisand is a work of art. She is Broadway, love, la fête, perfection. She has absolute mastery of the stage and the talent and professionalism that demonstrate the power of America and the feebleness of the rest of the world,” said le Monde

Where the Morally Repugnant Elite Meet to Bleat

The Telegraph bills a new play it reviewed this weekend as a “skewering of the liberal rich” but like so many things in Britain, the title is a polite mask to what is often itself concealing what the chatter-ati, the “provision wing of Radio 4” do in the open: live on a hateful envy of one thing or another.

Clay and Kelly live in a luxurious home with their cute young daughter and their new baby son. Kelly has a well-paid office job, so Clay has become a doting house-husband, and this apparently enviable couple have invited the rest of the family for Thanksgiving.

Everything goes gloriously wrong. It's clear that Clay can't abide his cynical plastic surgeon of a brother, Cash, and the golden couple also look down on Cash's glamour puss of an East European girlfriend who has alarmingly non-PC views on everything from gipsies (kill them) to smoking (best done in front of the kiddies).
But here’s the twist. This is why it’s okay to detest con Panto these “elite” libs:
The play is American, which will give English viewers a chance to say: "Well, of course, we are nothing like as bad as that."
Wanna bet? Whose behaviour do these “we are all Tibetan” types affect when they feel so damn earthier than though? That’s right: Europeans, particularly those of the English southeast sub-species – the one of their imagination.

I hope you already ate, because it gets worse. Our “man of the people” director is himself doing this for more than just publicity, it has an ugly tint of the same complex of sneering condescension and attention-seeking behaviour to those who would are just as boxed in and objectified to being looked down on as the stage characters: the audience.
When Dominic Cooke took over as artistic director of the Royal Court this year, he promised to reflect the theatre's predominantly middle-class audience back to itself. For a venue best known for gritty, in-your-face, kitchen-sink drama, this was a revolutionary manifesto.
Or is it an S & M thing, some sort of constitutional vestige of Elizabethan Equusian winky-winky for the very, very special, wisdom dispensing lefty pestilence that keeps scratching around for a new “fabulous” cause?

In fact it almost seems like the reason they want so much to be like you and me, is because they can’t really stand themselves.

Tuesday, June 26, 2007

Spitting Fury at Anybody Who Might Disagree With Them

We have a vested interest in creating panic
says a scientist (John Christie) in a documentary from Britain's TV Channel 4, The Great Global Warming Swindle (check out Part 4 for apocalyptic warnings from the 1970s about …global cooling — see 3:10 minutes from end).
[The movement] could be used [by "the global warming fraternity"] to legitimize a whole suite of myths that already existed: anti-cars, anti-growth, anti-development, and above all anti-that great Satan — the U.S.
See Greenpeace co-founder Patrick Moore's testimony in Part 5 about the two reasons for the shift to climate becoming a major focal point; Tim Ball's broken car analogy at 1:50 from the end in Part 6 ("the science is that bad"); and scientists' responses to charges of being in the pay of multinationals in Part 8.

The World War II Martyrs That France's Communists Keep Secret in Order to Hide the PCF's Positions During the Early 1940s

…on a vu ressurgir … les stéréotypes et clichés d'une "histoire" de la Résistance et du PCF qu'on croyait définitivement rangée au magasin des mythes et légendes.

…un petit arrangement avec l'histoire … consista à mettre en pleine lumière des militants arrêtés avant la rupture du pacte germano-soviétique et à rejeter dans l'ombre mémorielle ceux dont l'attitude soulignait trop crûment les aspects les moins avouables d'un passé que le PCF devenu patriote, républicain et résistant voulait faire oublier.
During World War II, France's communist party not only appropriated heroes (as well as non-heroes) for political purposes (while attempting to negotiate the continued publication of L'Humanité with the occupying Nazis, in other words doing anything but joining the resistance movement), write Jean-Marc Berlière and Sylvain Boulouque in Le Monde, the PCF even obscured the memory of true heroes, washing "one of the most troubled and ambiguous periods of its history" with "the blood of the hostages" while setting up "a moral obstacle towards any criticism of its attitude."
Accaparer cette tragédie à son seul profit et pour sa seule gloire, comme l'a fait le PCF depuis 1942, relève de la récupération politique. Les otages fusillés n'étaient pas tous communistes, Guy Môquet n'était pas le seul jeune... On chercherait en vain dans les discours prononcés à Châteaubriant, sur les plaques et dans les écrits dressés à la gloire de la résistance communiste, les noms de Christian Rizzo, Marcel Bourdarias, Fernand Zalkinov et leurs camarades, arrêtés, jugés, condamnés et exécutés au printemps 1942 pour avoir fait ce que Guy Môquet, en communiste discipliné, n'avait pas fait.

Ces jeunes militants commirent les premiers attentats sur ordre d'un parti qui mit des années à en assumer la paternité après avoir calomnié leurs auteurs ("ceux qui ont tué le Feldkommandant Hotz sont ceux qui ont incendié le Reichstag"), avant de les effacer purement et simplement de la mémoire. Si la dernière lettre de Guy Môquet est émouvante, les leurs ne le sont pas moins, mais personne ne rappelle leur mémoire...

Avec le sang des otages, le Parti communiste lavait une des périodes les plus troubles et ambiguës de son histoire en même temps qu'il dressait un obstacle moral à toute critique de son attitude.

Support Denmark!

True West and real balls ...

Tomorrow it's going to be Carlsberg and Danish salami all day.

Fears of self-censorship at French news outlets

Censorship? Why would anyone think that the French preSS is anything but unbridled and impartial.?

Monday, June 25, 2007

Those Bitter Old Men in their Flying Machines

If it weren’t for that nasty Eurofighter and those dastardly dastardly Americans making some kind of aircraft or other, this world-beating, sooper-dooper, super-plane wouldn’t be... well... doing badly!

As for the world-beating salesman... who says people need to shave!

Thanks to Michael who adds:

I suppose that when you lose every sales campaign to the F15/F16, it must eventually not be your own fault. How lucid, how French.

The New Paranoia About Outsiders...

...same as the old paranoia about outsiders.

Fake Solidarity is not Charity

While some are “philosophizing ‘til it hurts”, others are being generous with their time and earnings:

Gaudiani said Americans give twice as much as the next most charitable country, according to a November 2006 comparison done by the Charities Aid Foundation. In philanthropic giving as a percentage of gross domestic product, the U.S. ranked first at 1.7 percent. No. 2 Britain gave 0.73 percent, while France, with a 0.14 percent rate, trailed such countries as South Africa, Singapore, Turkey and Germany.
Bloated governments try to convince their taxpayers that their usury goes to something they imagine is some sort of “collectivized compassion”. The more the government sells people on this, the less people give of themselves, and beyond handwringing, to less actual empathy itself. If it isn't someone else’s problem, it's the state’s problem.

This passive form of “humanism courtesy the state” is a delusion and a sort of placebo to make up the difference between the ‘humanists’ they think they are and the emotionally needy people they really are.

- with thanks to Martin

Sunday, June 24, 2007

Here Kid, Pull My Finger

The usual continental passive-aggressive crap? Petulant envy? A retired British ace fighter pilot opines on de Villepin’s tack prior to the removal of Saddam Hussein:
“Let’s face it, the French have always been opportunistic when it comes to weapons deals. Maybe their military industry is flat on its face.

“But we took enough French-built Exocets during the Falklands for me not to feel too sorry for them.”

The Daily Express has been told by a senior diplomatic source that the former French Prime Prime Minister, Dominique du Villepin – he famously attacked Britain and the US at the UN for proposed involvement in the second Gulf War – was heavily motivated in his outburst by the fact that the French could not field an operational aircraft carrier.

Lowered expectations

As a senior official puts it, "the impact of Sarkozy will come mainly from the fact that France has been absent for such a long time."