Sunday, May 7, 2017

French Voters Finally Prove They Are Smarter than US

My one and only visit to Paris, there were intimations the French are not what I had thought through long, agonizing exposure to the French language in American schools. (In fact, the only French teacher I ever had who I liked was Algerian, which probably says something--I don't know what.)

But today the French scored higher on the national IQ test we call general election than the folks from the American heartland. 

As a matter of fact, they are looking a bit smarter today than their arrogant British neighbors on the other side of the Chunnel. 

As Paul Krugman noted some days ago, the French have cradle-to-grave high quality healthcare, job security, great wine, wonderful bread, and the only reason they are not as productive as American workers, overall, is they have so much vacation time which means the calculation of worker productivity skews toward Americans who tend to work closer to 50 weeks a year, as opposed to 39 or whatever the French work. When they are actually at work, they work quite effectively. But having a lot of vacation in an economy which works well may not be such a bad thing.

The French do smoke too much. That they have to work on. 
But they have decided to go forth boldly into the world, rather than quake and wail behind walls.

Actually, the New York Times had a great article today about the futility of building a wall along the Mexican border, which has many aspects to it, but can be summarized in a single word called, "TUNNEL." And, apparently, efforts by Americans to shore up the wall have created a golden opportunity for Mexican drug cartels, which have combined muscling in on the illegal crossing trade while combining it with transporting cocaine and meth, so building a wall has in fact helped with cross border trade, just not the kind you can tax.

We take our pleasures where we can nowadays. 
The Republican house passes a tax cut bill they called the American Health Care Act and it was almost worth it just to read Yvonne Abraham of the Boston Globe disembowel the whole frat boy crew. "All Smiles As American Healthcare Flatlines," is a masterpiece. Apparently, they were playing the Rocky theme in the House during the vote.  It really brought out the best in Ms. Abraham. 
We've had worse Sundays. 


  1. Yep-Vive la of great food, fashion..and now politics..I agree-Abraham's column was great too-oh those mighty, manly men chugging beer in the Rose Garden to celebrate stripping the most vulnerable of needed health coverage. Bet there was lot of chest thumping and arm wrestling going on when the cameras weren't rolling-a testosterone fueled extravaganza led by the Ape in the Oval Office..Way to go boys..

  2. Maud,
    It's almost enough to give testosterone a bad name.
    Does this hormone shut down neural circuits connected to orderly processing of ideas?
    Mad Dog