The intractability of the French Republic

Before I forget, there was this valedictory from Alan Little, until recently the BBC’s French correspondent. It’s an excellent, if very brief, pen picture of one of France’s great political themes: nothing changes until everything changes.

  • Crataegus

    France is a nation of philosophers and is in slow decline, but the British like to run them down; they are still the enemy. We can’t get past 1690 but often I think England can’t get past the 100 years war.

    We should remember that their rail system etc do work and Renault and Citron still exist. Not a bad place.

    Interesting article though.


    Great article, absolutely spot on.

  • Lettuce


    This is an article direct from the freezer to the microwave i.e. old and reheated especially as de Villepin made yesterday the biggest plan to deregulate French job market so far:,1-0@2-3224,36-731025@51-725561,0.html

  • Brian Boru

    It’s issues like this that explain high unemployment in France, not the Euro.

  • páid

    Pól Ó Muirí made the point recently that for those of us who don’t speak the lingue, French affairs will alway seem hazy and judged through Anglo eyes.
    The unity, republican (French republican not Irish republican,!) values theme reminds me of Douglas Gageby’s point about the Irish being lucky they were conquered by the English rather than the French. Cultural imperialists par excellence, they would have left no Gaeltacht!

  • IJP

    A superb article, bang on the money.

    The French have a particular difficulty that their chauvinism, while actually in many ways a positive thing, leads them to believe that all the answers must come from within France. The idea of learning from anyone else seems rather beyond them.

    That’s why I’m betting on Germany to get out of the doldrums first…