Nationalist Francophobia

With anti-European sentiment running high at the moment, it really should come as no surprise to find that social networking sites such as Facebook are vast repositories of such views.

(Or should that be suppositories?)

However, some comments really stand out, such as this one (on an English Nationalist page) which tackles the current hot topic of Sarkozy and Merkel trying to shore up the Euro:

  Sarkozy is keeping up the famous French tradition of collaborating with the Hun.

Looking at the writer’s profile, they appear to be well-educated but there’s so much wrong with what they say, that I have to say that whoever awarded them the degree they claim to possess needs fucking sacking.

In one short sentence, they manage to cram in so much xenophobic feeling that you can almost smell the bigotry.

A 10 minute car journey from where I live will take you to a disused quarry where 27 French resistance fighters were executed by a German firing squad. Yes, of course there were French collaborators, but there were also many, many brave men and women who tried to keep France free and make life difficult for the occupying Germans.

Then there were the majority of ordinary people who neither resisted or collaborated but who just tried to get on with life as best they could whilst surrounded by deprivation and the constant reminders of the horrors of war.

People like this Facebook poster seem to forget that one of the main reasons that the Germans never invaded Britain was a purely geographical one.

Britain is an island and this was what saved us from being overrun like France was.

However, if Hitler had been successful and invaded us, then I have no doubts whatsoever that along with British resistance fighters, there would have been British collaborators.

The Nazis did, in fact, occupy British soil during the Second World War – the Channel Islands.

And yes, there were collaborators there, too – British ones.

Indeed, Facebook (and the same source) offers yet more anti-French ‘goodies’ which have emerged since I broke off writing this entry.

Here are a few examples:

"France; a beautiful country inhabited by swine…."

"The biggest trouble with France is it is completely overrun with the French."

"Lol I love France, just can’t take the arrogance of its inhabitants!!"

"I’m pro English, not anti-French. …………………………………………………………………………………………………………….. hang on a minute – that’s the same thing, isn’t it? LOL"

"I have just started using the French version of Twitter.
"Its exactly the same except it retweets really quickly.:-)"

My…they’re a fucking riot, aren’t they?

And so self-congratulatory and amused by themselves.

Well, having lived here for nearly 2 years, I can quite honestly say that the French we’ve met have been nothing but friendly, kind, helpful and welcoming.

Still, that’s some English Nationalists for you…

Xenophobic, intellectually-stunted and petty-minded.

 

english-bulldog-dog-muzzle-leather-dog-muzzle-bulldog_LRG

Or, to put it rather more succinctly, shit for fucking brains.

Clarence Clemons RIP

I’ve never been a Bruce Springsteen fan.

Whatever it is – or was – about him that tuned a fairly standard singer-songwriter into a major league stadium and festival star just seems to have eluded me.

In fact, I might go so far as to say that ‘The Boss’ is a bit of a turn-off for me, as I’m not too happy with his ‘I’m just an ordinary working Joe’ image. That’s terribly easy to do if you’re a millionaire many times over.

However, there is one Springsteen song that I absolutely love and that’s ‘Born to Run’.

With its Phil Spectorish production – it sounds like it was recorded in the biggest bathroom in the world – its uber- American lyrics, its ensemble playing, its complex structure with many sections and its sheer energy and drive, it’s pure rock anthem and one of the all-time classics.

It’s actually the only Brooce track I have in my vast collection of music…

One of the stand out features of BTR for me is the sax solo, played by Clarence Clemons, who died yesterday following a stroke at the age of 65.

Here he is, when Bruce and the E Street Band sounded as though they meant it.

Thanks, Clarence…

 

 

RIP Big George

I’ve just heard the very sad news that George ‘Big George’ Webley has died.

bgnhoward

Big George was probably best known for writing the theme tune for ‘Have I Got News For You’ but I knew him personally as he was a Milton Keynes resident – as was I before we moved to France – and we occasionally bumped into each other when our orbits crossed on the local music scene.

He was a very nice guy indeed, as well as being a highly talented composer, musician and TV and radio broadcaster.

I’ve played with George – he depped on bass for a band I was in – and one of my fondest memories of him was when he supported another band I was in at the Marquee Bar of the Bull Hotel in Stony Stratford one New Years Eve. He performed the HIGNFY theme on guitar and kazoo and he went down an absolute storm.

Sad news indeed and, at 53, far too young.

Goodbye Big George…

Headline of the century?

 

Capture

Zippy for mayor!

The comments section in the online Daily Mail is often worth a chuckle.

Today has been no exception with the news that the UK is about to get its first BNP mayor.

The worst rated comment on the story reads as follows:

What a disgrace. People should not be allowed to vote for fascist parties. The UK is a democracy not a Nazi state.

– Rainbow, Hackney, 12/4/2011 13:30

I don’t think Rainbow quite gets this democracy stuff…

The truth, almost the truth and nothing like the truth

So, the inquest into the death of Ian Tomlinson at the G20 protests is well and truly underway.

Today the police officer who pushed Tomlinson over, minutes before he died, was giving evidence.

Pc Simon Harwood stood by his statement in which he said Mr Tomlinson’s posture was “almost defiant”.

Almost defiant?

So not defiant then.

I’m glad we’ve got that sorted.

Carry on like that and we’ll have criminals pleading ‘almost guilty’.

Giving evidence for the third day, Pc Harwood said he had not expected the newspaper seller to fall over and he had not helped him while he lay on the ground because it was not part of his training.

So, Harwood doesn’t expect someone to fall over when he pushes them. OK, that might not happen every time you push someone, but surely you expect it to happen sometimes.

Oh, and heaven help you if this police officer arrives first on the scene at an accident because there’s fuck all he can do for you due to his lack of first aid training.

Are we really expected to believe that standard basic first aid training is not given to serving police officers out amongst the public?

Matthew Ryder QC, for the Tomlinson family, said Pc Harwood was denying events clearly visible on the video.

He asked Pc Harwood: “Do you agree he had his back to you? We’re all here in this room looking at the video.”

Mr Tomlinson was filmed moments before he died on 1 April 2009

Pc Harwood replied: “No.”

Mr Ryder said: “You’re lying Pc Harwood, I suggest, and you know it.”

To that, Pc Harwood said: “No. I’m just trying to help.”

 

Tomlinson quite clearly has his back to Harwood.

Harwood was trying to help by lying?

Trying to help himself more like…

The officer maintained that “from his angle” it had appeared Mr Tomlinson had not been moving away.

I thought minimum eyesight requirements were rather higher for the Met, as it appears Harwood is virtually blind.

Pc Harwood has already apologised to the Tomlinson family for “any way” he may be responsible for the death.

He has admitted Mr Tomlinson was no threat to him or his colleagues before he hit him with a baton and pushed him.

So, Harwood admits he may be responsible for the death of Tomlinson and, moreover, that he assaulted Tomlinson twice prior to his death.

Members of Mr Tomlinson’s family walked out in tears after hearing the policeman’s denials.

Hardly surprising after Harwood’s behaviour up to that moment.

Pc Harwood, who is suspended from the force on full pay, has been told he will not face any criminal prosecutions over what happened – but he is still facing a Met Police misconduct hearing, due to take place after the inquest.

Off work with full pay and exempt from criminal prosecution?

Now that really is adding insult to injury.

It lives!

After 3 months without internet access at all, and the previous 8 months being a miserable crawl using a 3G dongle that made the days of 56K dialup seem almost fucking halcyon in comparison, we now have broadband here in the deepest wilds of the Mayenne.

Sure, it’s only 2MB, but it’s a very reliable and consistent 2MB and comes as part of an Orange ADSL package that gives us the interwebs, unlimited national and international VOIP phone calls and French TV for a reasonable price.

We finally moved into our house last Friday and this coming Friday marks the beginning of our second year here.

We can’t decide whether the past year has flown by or we’ve been here forever.

Regrets about leaving the UK?

Absolutely fucking none.

The hardest thing is leaving the people we love behind – family and friends – but we’ve been back to the UK twice, are going at least twice this year and have had visitors with more to come.

The continued existence of this blog was never in question and, rest assured, it will be regularly updated with the usual mixture of comment, music reviews and reports from France on what we’re up to.

I’d thought about creating separate blogs for these categories but decided against it as I’d rather put my energies into the writing rather than organise several blogs.

I’m back.