August 28, 2003

No Snappy Title. Just an Observation.

For the record, I am positive that the fellow being quoted here is joking. But his words are very revealing of a certain mindset. The quote in question refers to the French government's brilliant idea that maybe one more day a year of productivity might help them (read the article--it's great!) finance health care for the elderly and prevent another disaster like the one this past summer. Here it is:

Transport Secretary Dominique Bussereau said he opposed abolishing a May 8 holiday that celebrates the end of World War II in Europe, or Christmas, or Armistice Day on Nov. 11, when fighting stopped in World War I.

"Definitely not May 8, because it left quite a few memories; not December 25 because I want Christmas presents," he said. (emphasis mine)

Yes, Secretary, if the French Government takes away the day off for Christmas, it means that the BIRTH OF CHRIST MUST BE WIPED FROM OUR CONSCIOUSNESS! NO PRESENTS FOR YOU, BY ORDER OF THE STATE! Dear God. I know he was probably just trying to be droll, but isn't it interesting what his drollery reveals? When you believe in the State above all, then you couldn't possibly hold a celebration that wasn't state sanctioned, could you? I would say that this subjection of individuality to the state is Orwellian and disturbing, but actually it's just typically French.

The rest of the article is lots of fun. Thrill to the outrage of the Communists! Gasp at the oblivious selfishness of the trade unions! Wonder at the doomed naivete of the French business federation! And when you're done, thank God that you don't live in France.

Posted by Big Arm Woman at August 28, 2003 02:01 PM
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Dear Big Arm Woman,

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Posted by: Haleh at August 29, 2003 09:35 PM