• Fri. Mar 3rd, 2023

Too many Brits think everything France does is wonderful and we’re a bunch of swivel-eyed loons

May 16, 2021

You could have knocked me down with a feather when I read that Michel Barnier who as EU chief negotiator seemingly spent years berating Brits for wanting control of our borders is now hoping to run as a centre-Right candidate in the French presidential election, partially on the platform of suspending all non-EU immigration to France for five years. The problems with immigration are not moderate we need to talk to our neighbours about the Schengen Agreement and, we possibly need to put in stricter border controls, he shrugged. Barnier being something of a hero to our masochistic Remainers, Ill be interested to see how they justify such a positively Trumpian plan; theres probably some Guardian hack explaining hard right now why, when Barnier bans immigration, its civilised.
I suppose we should be understanding. Ive lost count of the number of times over the past five years that Ive read that France is in the process of having a nervous breakdown what they call une crise de nerfs and what my mum used to call the screaming ab-dabs.
A peacetime army should be doing useful stuff, like ours being deployed to Covid hotspots to assist the safekeeping of its people, helping with surge testing so that our freedom may be returned to us. But across the Channel, retired and serving soldiers have signed not one but two letters warning that France is heading for civil war.
The government made the usual supercilious noises of disapproval the French elite are so good at but as 58 per cent of citizens polled supported the soldiers sentiments, politicians of all parties are going to have to engage with a cheesed-off electorate lest Marine Le Pen sweep all before her. Her response to the letter was a matey I invite you to join us in taking part in the coming battle, which is the battle of France a reaction echoed by the glamorous mayor of Pariss 7th arrondissement, Rachida Dati, who added: What is written in this letter is a reality, when you have a country plagued by urban guerrilla warfare.
Im curious to see how this countrys Francophiles would react to a National Rally (formerly National Front) government; its not like they dont have form in forgiving their chosen spiritual homeland everything. French Flu was identified in the 1950s as the syndrome in which Left-wing Britons presume everything is better in France than here; it starts with cuisine and ends up with looking the other way when their spooks blow up a Greenpeace ship, killing people, and get a heros welcome.
When the French drink booze with every meal, theyre civilised; were alcoholics. Smoking, sexism, Serge Gainsbourg leching over Whitney Houston on national television, slapstick humour all these dubious pursuits need only a little je ne sais quoi sprinkled over them and theyre good to go.
Boris is a bounder French presidents are sophisticated swells when they put it about. According to the Honour Based Violence Awareness Network, the penal codes that were enacted under the Napoleonic empire influenced the development of laws in North Africa and the Middle East which permit reduced sentences for murders that are related to honour the killing of women. And talking of Napoleon, how touching to see President Macron lay a wreath marking the 200th anniversary of his death this month, telling France that the empire-building, slavery-reintroducing little warmonger was part of us.
So many wrongs have been exposed and illusions shattered by the blessing we call Brexit. The contempt for democracy by a liberal elite which pretended to be progressive. The cruel export of live animals for slaughter stopped at last. The end of the tampon tax! And the idea that Europeans are full of joie de vivre while we over here are an uptight island of swivel-eyed loons.
I admire France and the French: their way with dairy, their beautiful female film stars and their excellent national anthem, so much more rousing than ours. Its their British fans I cant stand so keen to write off their own land as living on past glories and frightened of the future, and never seeing the same qualities in their grand amour.