La vraie-fausse non-consigne – the true-false non-vote of Marine Le Pen

Une actuelle d’LeMonde que me donnent un peu des difficultés (je me suis passé deux jours).   Il y a des parties d’ un  discours par Marine Le Pen, lequel je n’ai pas trouvé faciles.  Je pense qu’il est meilleur d’avoir en plus de deux partis politique, comme eux États-Unis.  Il y a plus des choix entre les candidates, et en plus des lieus où ils se chevauchent.  (Et, j’ai quelque chose très amusant pour ma poste prochaine.)

La vraie-fausse non-consigne de vote de Marine Le Pen

The true-false non-voting “vote” of Marine Le Pen

Le Monde.fr | 01.05.2012 à 18h09 –  Mis à jour le 01.05.2012 à 18h44

Par Abel Mestre et Caroline Monnot

Marine Le Pen sait qu’elle fera mouche lorsqu’elle lance, aux plusieurs milliers de personnes rassemblées pour l’écouter place de l’Opéra, à Paris, mardi 1er mai : “Quel effet cela vous fait de passer d’idiots qui votent Marine Le Pen à celui d’arbitres de l’élection présidentielle ? Quel effet cela vous fait de passer du statut de ‘fachos racistes xénophobes’ à celui de ‘Français ayant de vraies préoccupations et à qui il faut parler’ ?” Et d’enchaîner : “Voyez les mines déconfites des tenants de l’oligarchie !”

Marine Le Pen knows that she will hit when she fires, with several thousand people assembled to listen at the Place de l’Opera, in Paris, Tuesday, the first of May: “What does it feel like to go from idiots who vote for Marine Le Pen to the referees of the Presidential election?  What does it feel like to go from ‘fascist racist xenophobes’ to ‘French with real concerns which must be discussed’?” And adds: “Watch the bombs blow up the beliefs of the oligarchy!” Continue reading

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la carte-herbe – grass card, weed card, marijuana card

Okay, a new article from today’s Le Monde which explains the impact of a new law in the Netherlands which will limit the sale of marijuana at coffee-shops to holders of a permit, which can only be obtained by a Dutch resident, or those from Belgium or Germany.   It is fascinating reading… (I had never known the exact specifics of the sale of marijuana in coffee-shops before).  Unfortunately, the Mayor of Maastricht does come out sounding more than a little racist, and the problems he says they are attempting to solve for – traffic, speeding, littering, etc. – seem to be quite common for any urban center; they don’t hold a lot of water.   Perhaps the ends listed are legitimate, however one wonders if the least restrictive means necessary are being applied.   That is ironic, however, coming from an American, where the sale and use of marijuana is almost completely prohibited – and marijuana is considered a Schedule I narcotic (having no recognized medicinal value) – right up there with heroin, LSD, and ecstasy.  The state where I live has zero allowances for medical marijuana usage either, thus all sale or possession of any kind is illegal.

It will be interesting to see the outcome of this action – if the legal proceedings will protect the rights of individuals to use marijuana without registering with the city – or if the subsequent economic impact will cause a rethinking of the policy (I’m sure they don’t call the coffee-shops “tourist factories” for nothing) – or if the social fallout of pushing the dealers onto the street and putting the “war on drugs” on the sidewalk instead of hiding it away in a coffee-shop – will alter the situation.

Also, it is an interesting parallel to previous articles regarding the right-ward shift in rhetoric by Nicolas Sarkozy and the National Front, which seems to indicate dissatisfaction with the EU, or “populist” (even separatist) movements emphasizing national identity.  Here, there is a sense of “Smoking pot is for the Dutch.  If you want to smoke pot in your own country, go away and legalize it there.”  In fact, it seems positively anti-EU to say that the sale of a product is reserved for citizens of a certain country; to permit it for your own and two others, but not for the rest.  Definitely would be interesting to look at its potential  impact in relation to the Schengen convention.

Pays-Bas : la bataille des coffee-shops

Netherlands [Low-Country]: Coffee-shop wars

LE MONDE | 26.04.2012 à 15h35 – Mis à jour le 30.04.2012 à 13h15

Par Yves Eudes, Maastricht (Pays-Bas), envoyé spécial

Même quand on est prévenu, on ressent un petit choc en lisant l’affiche rouge placardée à l’entrée du coffee-shop Easy Going : “FRANCE : NON”. Depuis octobre 2011, seuls les résidents des Pays-Bas et des pays limitrophes – la Belgique et l’Allemagne – ont le droit d’entrer et d’acheter du cannabis dans les 14 coffee-shops de Maastricht. Pour appliquer cette nouvelle règle, la direction de l’Easy Going a installé à l’entrée un guichet de contrôle : un portier scanne les pièces d’identité, puis actionne un portique pour laisser entrer les clients, un par un.

Even if you’ve been warned, you feel a little shock reading the red sign attached to the entrance of the Easy Going coffee-shop: “No French.” Since October 2011, only residents of the Netherlands and neighboring countries – Belgium and Germany – have the right to enter and buy marijuana in the 14 coffee-shops of Maastricht. To enforce this new rule, management of the Easy Going has installed a small window at the entrance: a doorman scans the ID, then allows entrance to customers, one by one.

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La percée – breakthrough

Here is an article from LeMonde discussing the growing rise of the National Front and “populism” (which I believe should be more correctly termed “nationalism” here), in France, and the concern it raises for the leadership of the EU.  See the note in the Vocabulaire discussing “Schengen.”

Bruxelles s’inquiète de la montée d’un populisme anti-européen

Brussels is concerned with the rise of anti-European populism.

Le Monde.fr | 24.04.2012 à 12h35 – Mis à jour le 24.04.2012 à 16h02

Par Philippe Ricard et Jean-Pierre Stroobants (Bruxelles, Luxembourg Bureau européen)

La percée de Marine Le Pen et la droitisation de Nicolas Sarkozy ont suscité de vives réactions en Europe, lundi 23 avril. Sur fond de montée en puissance de l’extrême droite chez les Vingt-Sept, les responsables européens s’inquiètent de la force du Front national et de l’énergie déployée par le président sortant pour tenter de séduire cet électorat, afin de combler son retard sur M. Hollande.

The breakthrough of Marine Le Pen and the rightward shift of Nicolas Sarkozy has given rise to strong reactions in Europe, as of Monday, April 23th. Based on the rise in power of the extreme right on the 27th, European leaders are concerned with the strength of the National Front and the effort spent by the President to attract that electorate, to address his lagging behind Mr. Hollande.

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