Friday, July 21, 2006


In France the candidates are vying with each other to lament that they're not cut from better cloth, like the English:

Sarkozy: speak English and work harder

THE French need to work harder and display less arrogance, if they are to recapture former glories, Nicolas Sarkozy, the Interior Minister, tells his countrymen in a highly personal 281-page book published yesterday.

....[it is] a tough political message on the cardinal value of work, a value that he says the French have abandoned in favour of such measures as the 35-hour working week.

Hailing modern Britain as an example, M Sarkozy urges voters to remove their heads from the sand, accept that France is in decline and embrace the market economy as the path to revival.

....Although he denies personal animosity for his rival, President Chirac, he makes no attempt to hide their fundamental political differences.

He criticises almost every significant decision that M Chirac has taken, including the threat to veto a UN resolution on the war in Iraq and approval of Turkey’s entry into the EU.

And in a comment that will infuriate traditionalists, he says that the French should no longer insist on speaking their own language in international negotiations and instead should use English.

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