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Nonsense on stilts. With a Jimmy Bonnet, a red nose and Spock ears

Nos amis les Français are intent on outdoing the Swedes for silliness, and I do believe we have a winner for the day. However, the Ides of January has come, but it has not past....

And this piece of folly? Laurent 'Infected blood scandal' Fabius wants balance in television news / current affairs coverage written into the constitution. And how does he propose to do this? By the use of a stopwatch. Yes, really, and he has started a petition (maybe he should try his luck at No.10, it does not have a particularly onerous door policy) to that effect:

"The balance of our democracy is undermined by the fact of the the President of the Republic and his advisers' considerable speaking time in the media not being accounted for. This is why we require that a constitutional provision be adopted, which imposes compliance with a true rule of the three thirds for the television appearances: a third for the president of the Republic, his collaborators and the government, a third for the majority, and a third for the forces of opposition".

The French equivalent of Ofcom has already shot down similar proposals because 'the President...does not speak in the name of a party or a political group'. In the meantime, the current - and equally idiotic - rule will continue: thirds for government, majority, opposition.

During the Sego /Sarko debate of last year, I noted similar egg timer shenanigans: "Both of them are being subject to a digital egg timer so precise times speaking to the nation are equal. SR got a second for saying 'bon soir'. Yes really".

I suspect that Fabius has the raging hump because Sarko beat him to the Elysee (LF was third after Sego and DSK among the Socialists), and has a rather nice looking young lady on his arm, whereas Fabius appears to have remained a less than jolly bachelor since his divorce.

In his favour, I will grant that his response to a magazine's question, 'what would you like God to say to you, if he exists?' is really rather good:

"Welcome my son. Make yourself comfortable. You have done well. Now you can go and find your friends. And you will never be short of time for them".

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Blogger Mr Eugenides said... 2:39 pm

In strict fairness it should be pointed out that US Presidential elections use similarly anal methods to ensure that candidates speak for exactly equal times. The result, of course, is hyper-scripted, utter unspontaneous, and stultifyingly dull.  



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