They had travelled 180km from their primary school to see a Regional Council meeting. Intended to help children think about democracy. What they saw was racism and bigotry. Continue reading The last of déjà vu: Secularism Wars (again)
Gender-neutral language A couple of years ago, people fought culture wars about the semi-substantive issue of écriture inclusive [gender-neutral language]: should the French language ‘favour’ the masculine usage. The Mots-Clés (‘Key Words’) group described French as a ‘phallocentric language’. France’s High Council for Equality between Women and Men urged public authorities to avoid ‘sexual stereotypes’ in their communication. Gender-neutral text certainly can have the effect of slowing … Continue reading Still more déjà vu: Culture Wars (again)
Catholic Ultras march (again).
‘What do we want?’
‘The traditional family.’
‘When do we want it?’
‘All day and every day. From now and for ever.’
Those so-lovable Catholic Ultras who created La Manif Pour Tous [‘The Protest Demo for Everyone’] have been on the roads again. This ultra-conservative movement … Continue reading Déjà vu
Lovable Old Rogue Jacques Chirac died last week. Minister for 3 years. Mayor of Paris for 18 years. Prime Minister twice. President of France 1995-20007. In the wake of his death, pollster Ifop asked who was France’s greatest 5th Republic President. Chirac came the reply. First equal with de Gaulle. Both 30% support. [Polling Note: Macron got 7%.] But haven’t times changed. A 2013 Ifop … Continue reading Rogues gallery
This panorama of an often over-heated summer has to begin (as did those summer months) with ‘Lobstergate’. Those lazy, hazy, crazy days were off and away with a marginally overcooked story about lobsters and Parliamentary Grandes Bouffes. Continue reading Those lazy, hazy, crazy days of summer, Those days of soda and pretzels and …
With the mercury soaring into never-ever-has-it-been-so-hot territory, France has slumped into a premature summer-break torpor. Continue reading Dog Day Afternoons (not forgetting mornings, evenings and nights)
The initial reaction of misguided Républicains party leader, Wauquiez, was to describe the result as ‘not meeting the expectations raised by their campaign’. After all, expectations must surely have been relatively high for a party list led by a Eurosceptic Catholic philosophy teacher whose previous campaigns were largely confined to opposition to same-sex marriage. Continue reading Ch-Ch-Ch-Ch-Changes
Over France as a whole, Le Pen’s party finished first in 24,869 communes of a total of 34,921 communes. That’s 71%! Pause for worried reflection. Continue reading Small French Euro-Election earthquake. Several hurt (some profoundly). Few winners. An awful lot of losers.
Could turnout finally exceed a nearly respectable (and record for the Euro-Elections since 1994) 50%? Continue reading A near-continent holds its collective breath. Actually, something may be happening in France.
In under two weeks, a deeply-indifferent France will finally arrive at the moment not too many care about. The 9th set of Euro-Elections for the little-loved European Parliament. Few, excepting those directly involved, ever get really excited by Euro-Elections. However, pollsters Ifop-Fiducial say half the electorate declare themselves ‘interested’, with 20% having ‘lots’ of interest. Really? Maybe ‘academic’ interest? Polls consistently tell us that barely 40% … Continue reading It’s Euro-Election time!