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Postcard from France: no jury required, thank you

August 30, 2022
Phillipe Duclos – Le Juge from the French series Spiral

France is still reverberating in shock after our next prime minister, Liz Truss (normally referred to in this place as Madame Straitjacket), reveals that the jury is out over whether it is Britain’s friend or foe. Riots in the street? Waves of migrants bid a fond farewell as they set off from Calais? A new Grande Armée gathering in Boulogne?

Nothing so exciting, I’m afraid. Just that sublime French gesture of indifference: a shrug of the shoulders accompanied by pouf – the gentle expulsion of air in the manner of an understated oral fart.

As President Macron suggested the other day, the presence of all those Volvos in the villages of Provence and the Dordogne is evidence that we British, or English, as the French prefer to say, continue to adore our neighbour much as before, even if the 0.4% of our population who are about to select Mme Straitjacket as our leader would prefer to sit tight in Chelmsford, far away from those smelly French cheeses and gut-rotting wines.

Of course, Macron is right to dismiss the utterings of someone whose opinions are no more considered and nuanced than those emanating from a half-inebriated guest at a dinner party fuelled by Chilean wine somewhere in Middle England. He knows, as most of us do, that the slow-witted Straitjacket and her dumb cronies are probably past their sell-by date before they’ve even reached the shelves.

In two years time, she will be gone, one hopes. France will still be a hop across the channel, as will its smelly cheeses, gorgeous chateaux, churches and medieval squares. No doubt Macron will be ready to extend the hand of friendship once again to a fresh bunch of politicians with a modicum of common sense and emotional intelligence.

Meanwhile, we disenfranchised plebs, who have no voice in the current leadership contest, will continue to enjoy everything our neighbour has to offer. And if the people from the market towns of England chose not to, tant pis to them. More cheese for the rest of us.

  1. “Boy, those French! They have a different word for everything.”
    ― Steve Martin

  2. I wish I was in France just now Steve. The front page of today’s ‘Daily Express’ has Professor Patrick Minford, Liz Truss’s principal economics advisor, as a “visionary”. One of his visions had Brexit delivering an immediate £5 billion boost to the UK economy. That was a brilliantly accurate vision wasn’t it. Choosing Minford to be your economics advisor is like choosing Stevie Wonder to be captain of your local pub’s darts team.

  3. debby moggio permalink

    Oh, please! Don’t pussyfoot about, do tell us what you really think!

    • What I really think about a lot of things is pretty much unprintable. I thought I was being quite kind to the Straitjacket…

  4. dfmoggio permalink

    I believe you were being strait….
    Always appreciate that about you.

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