Friday, November 03, 2006

Peeing on the flames

In a recent comment "anonymous" (perhaps not his/her real name) asks what I "intend to do about what some are calling the French intifadah" (apparently this is a legitimate spelling). Meanwhile, a correspondent congratulates me on the success of the campaign so far, but asks me to do something about men peeing in public.
Doubtless a deft politician, like Little Sarko, could meld these two themes together into a single, digestible sound bite, but it's beyond me.
Perhaps technocratic ENA-trained policy wonks will soon propose that men caught peeing in public be pressed into service extinguishing bus and car fires, but this will never be a full solution (even if the men in question are full of solution).
Instead I think it is important to consider the two issues separately.
As far as the 'intifada' question goes I have several things to say. I will be issuing policy statements on immigration, the inner cities, integration and employment over the course of next week.
In the meantime, I'd like to make one thing perfectly clear (did you see what I did there, it's a phrase I've borrowed from politicians on the radio, who are always making one thing perfectly clear). The social unrest in France and widespread lawlessness is not an intifada. To label it as such is to misunderstand, I suspect willfully, both the intifada in the Middle East and the problems in France.
I suspect that this spurious appellation has been applied by those who, for whatever reason, seek to boost the notion that we are engaged in some new holy war between Christianity and Islam. The idea that such a conflict exists and is escalating is clearly a convenient recruiting sergeant for religious nut-jobs on both sides, hence the desire to tag any event that even remotely suits their agenda as a battle in that war.
I'm having none of it.
Of course we need to tackle this lawlessness. Of course we need to understand how we have got into this situation and plot our way out of it. But this is not part of some greater conflict between two sets of mythology.
I would remind you all that in France (just as in at least one other country I can think of) there is a formal separation of the state from any form of religion. Crime is crime, and it is hard enough to handle as it is. I have no intention of allowing zealous loons to hijack crime in a bid to brand other zealous loons as even more zealous and loony than themselves.
Oh, and if you could all stop pissing in public too.
Thank you for your attention
Victor
LibEgFrat to you all

5 comments:

Anonymous said...

vote latrine!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Anonymous said...

"The social unrest in France and widespread lawlessness is not an intifada. To label it as such is to misunderstand, I suspect willfully, both the intifada in the Middle East and the problems in France."

To not label it as such is to misunderstand what the word intifada means - simply put it means 'uprising' which is an appropriate description of the situation in many parts of France.
You are engaged in some ole-fashioned politicking here - splitting hairs over definitions rather than talking to the issues. So much for a breath of fresh air in French politics!

Victor Latrine said...

I was well aware of the meaning of the word (thanks all the same). What is going on in France is not an uprising in whatever language you want to express it.
Just to state that an uprising is an appropriate description of the situation in France doesn't make it so -- cite your evidence. Which "parts of France"?
All my hairs were left unsplit -- I called it what it is: lawlessness yes, but not some organised attempt to seize power.
Riots in LA are not an American intifada and this is not a French intifada. Besides, if you think it is an uprising, then call it an uprising, or a soulèvement at a pinch, why bother to go all the way to Arabic to find a word for it. Clearly because your agenda is to associate the disturbances with Islam and thus further your own agenda.
The thing is this: it could be highly entertaining to watch two religions battling it out over which version of the floaty sky-man myth to believe -- my nan used to call it two bald men aruging over a comb. However, they seem determined to drag the rest of us into the conflict too. I want no part of it.
And, to repeat, could you please stop weeing in public.

L'ecossaise said...

Cher Victor,
I am concerned that your preoccupation with public urination may be a subliminal response to the well known maxim that le Pen is mightier than l'epee...?

Alors, for as much as it is worth, I offer to your campaign all the support I can conjure from the Auld Alliance.

Bonne chance, et LibEgFrat to you too!

L'ecossaise

Nerde said...

Dear Victor,

I am concerned that your campaign is being deliberately undermined and sabotaged by the likes of L'ecossaise who are tricking you to focus on subjects like public urination. Clearly L'ecossaise has not had to use the public facilities in a typical French town. They leave a lot to be desired and it is not surprising that sensitive people do their business elsewhere.

Perhaps you might choose a slogan like 'Better Latrines with Latrine' and identify yourself with a campaign to upgrade all the public conveniences to a standard that even the Swiss would envy. I'm conifident that the money spent would be recouped by improved health and less lawlessness from the like of L'ecossaise.

By the way where do you stand on the subject of hunting? Are you for or against le chasse?

Still your number one fan.

Nerde