Politics

I'll Miss Him, and I Can't Wait to Start

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The International Herald Tribune is being a little too kind to Chirac with this headline:

Battered Chirac defends France on all fronts

President Jacques Chirac, upping the stakes in Paris’s verbal jousting match with London, said Thursday that the French were better than the British in many domains: They have more children, they spend more on research and they live longer.

“If you take the major elements in society – health policy, the fight on poverty – we are clearly better off than the British.”


The correct verb for that isn’t “defending.” It’s “dissing.”

Props to the “two French interviewers” who promptly pointed out “that Britain’s economic growth was faster than France’s, and its jobless toll half that of France.”

He’s right about British food, though. He’s got them there.

Anyway, I like Jacques a lot better after this picture came across the wire during the G8 Summit:


You’d make faces like that, too, if you had to sit between two yammering ’80s pop stars suffering from indifferent dental care and delusions of being the new Albert Schweitzers.

But then I started imagining that Chirac does this face all the time — lightning quick — then goes back to serious and governmental expression, before the photographers can snap it. And it’s become a game with the press pool. They’ll call out, “Hey, Jacques, make the French Face.” And he smiles slyly and shakes his head as if to say, “not now, mes amis, not here,” but then all of a sudden, BLING! Then quick back to normal.

And this time they just happened to catch him.

Yeah, I know. I need a hobby.

  • http://www.michaeltotten.com Michael Totten

    That’s a great explanation. I think I’ve decided it must be the right one. .

  • http://www.kozoru.com Justin Gardner

    Excuse me, but how much have those yammering rock stars done for world poverty in their lifetimes?

    Cut ’em some slack, jack.

  • http://vernondent.blogspot.com/ Callimachus

    Excuse me, but how much have those yammering rock stars done for world poverty in their lifetimes?

    I dunno. Their utility in that case has been questioned.

  • http://www.kozoru.com Justin Gardner

    It’s been questioned, however:

    Even if we accept that raising half of the poorest people’s daily wage to over a dollar would be a good thing for those individuals and their families, it is still far, far below what we would expect for ourselves and our own families.

    Okay right, seemingly negative. But we’re not talking about first world countries here so his point is pretty invalid. It’s not like ANY program is going to vault these poverty stricken nations into first world status.

    Basically, they need to start somewhere, so please…cynicism aside, let’s applaud those who are actually trying to help the problem instead of attacking their rock star egos.

    Agreed?

  • http://freshmlmlead.blogspot.com Tisli

    Good job.