9 2 mins 13 yrs

Is what has happened on the streets of Paris the shape of things to come? French State workers have risen up and tried to cause as much chaos as possible as they express their unhappiness at Sarkozy and his handling of the economic slump. Given how cossetted these workers are, you almost have to admire their brass neck!

“After a big and noisy march through central Paris, union leaders claimed a triumph for what they depicted as the biggest day of protest for a decade. The high point came when a huge crowd packed the Place de l’Opéra at the heart of the Right Bank, and sang The Internationale, the old revolutionary anthem.”

There is going to be civil unrest right across Europe as conditions deteriorate further and I wonder if the EU will be able to hold it together or could we see some of the PIGS (Portugal, Italy, Ireland Greece, Spain) face civil revolts as citizens demand that governments take action and leave the Euro in order to try and put in place national rescue packages?

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  1. David:

    "There is going to be civil unrest right across Europe"

    I wouldn’t count on it. Not unrest in the French mould anyhow.

    I’m old enough to remember the Paris riots in the 1960s. We looked at our French counterparts with envy, wishing we could mobilise Irish students like that. But we couldn’t. They didn’t have les balles.

  2. "There is going to be civil unrest right across Europe"

    Its too cold out.. and its wet.. and corrie has just come on.. maybe after that.. but then there is that documentary on later about european birds and their migration patterns.. so ill probably leave it till monday.. tuesday at the latest

  3. Before the Battle of Agincourt in 1415, the French, anticipating victory over the English, proposed to cut off the middle finger of all captured English soldiers. Without the middle finger it would be impossible to draw the renowned English longbow and therefore they would be incapable of fighting in the future. This famous English longbow was made of the native English Yew tree, and the act of drawing the longbow was known as "plucking the yew" (or "pluck yew").

    Much to the bewilderment of the French, the English won a major upset and began mocking the French by waving their middle fingers at the defeated French, saying, See, we can still pluck yew! Since ‘pluck yew’ is rather difficult to say, the difficult consonant cluster at the beginning has gradually changed to a labiodentals fricative F’, and thus the words often used in conjunction with the one-finger-salute! It is also because of the pheasant feathers on the arrows used with the longbow that the symbolic gesture is known as "giving the bird."

    And yew thought yew knew every plucking thing

  4. IB.

    There is a very real prospect indeed that this protest will become pan-European, and for one very good reason: it is neither political or social, but entirely economic, and everyone is going to get affected.
    That has never happened before, esp in the UK where we have had nearly three generations of great prosperity.
    The scene is set now for a complete reversal of fortunes.
    40% of our GDP is (or was) generated from our financial pre-eminence on the world market. That’s been completely blown away. China/India and the far east have had their fingers badly burned, and won’t forget it. (China has lost 10 million jobs)
    As Putin said, the whole crisis has been generated from the "English speaking world". And he’s right.

    The only thing that will galvanise the Brits NOW is the certain knowledge that their wallets are going to empty PDQ, and when that sinks in, your: "I wouldn’t count on it. Not unrest in the French mould anyhow" could be- ‘Famous Last Words’.

  5. Bernard:

    "China has lost 10 million jobs"

    Wow, I didn’t know that! Thanks for the heads-up.

    It’s inconcievable really. Ten million is a whole nation in some parts. We’re all in trouble.

    And you and David could be right about the continent-wide unrest, now I give it more thought.

  6. I think it is in the air, global. This is just the begining. At least the French are doing something ! Here in the USA we have ostrich who are beleiving all that they hear on the news. Most are not aware of what is happening all over the world much less on home turf. Here the govt is preparing with concentration camps through FEMA. Wander if there is not the same preparations in other countries ?

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