2022 Apr 24 - French Election

- Amusing scenes at the world snooker championship as a pigeon flew onto the table. Although some of us are old enough to remember when a Parrot won the tournament in 1991
- A story about a double decker on fire in Glasgow, which is certainly a step up from a fried Mars Bar
- The UN have declared David Attenbourough 'champion of the earth' although I missed the fight, maybe it was on pay-per-view. He seems a bit old to be doing that sort of thing too although I guess that never stopped the later Rocky films.

The main story is potentially the French Election, Macron won although the way that the election was spun by the media was strange to say the least. Marine LePenn advocated for higher taxes, reducing the retirement age and a wave of socialist spending and therefore was portrayed as right wing extremist. In contrast, Macron is an arch capitalist and ex-Goldman Sachs banker who was therefore portrayed as a leftist candidate by a sympathetic media. In many respects that's far from the maddest set of ideas to emerge from France although to be honest neither of their ambitions boded well for anyone else other than the French although it's a moot point given that Emmanuel Macron is about as likely to enact any of his policies on the French public as I am mine. It's been several years after all since the gilets jaunes put a stop to any traction on his green policies and if people are buying fewer cars it's mostly down to endless industrial action bringing car factories in France to a standstill.

It is important to note the fact that despite Macron winning that election, nearly a half the country voted for a candidate that the media had spent months portraying as some sort of modern Elizabeth Báthory chracter. Surely it must raise eyebrows that despite the entire French establishment orchestrating a propaganda war against Le Penn, she still won nearly half the electorate, you have to wonder what would have happened if they'd remained neutral but France isn't historically the sort of place that sits on the philosophical fence about things. De Gaulle famously said "How can anyone govern a nation that has 246 different kinds of cheese?"

And of course, Typically Russia was blamed for behind everything because of course they are. The place is portrayed as a skilful and calculating adversary that schemes things all around the world and undermines democracy through skill and a professionally run espionage service. Except it seems like they'd struggle to run a bath, let alone a subversive anti-democracy campaign. Le Penn was on the ballot because her views are highly popular, not because Vladimir Putin orchestrated it.

Putin's army has this year shown itself to be unable to win a war against a country with a GDP about the size of Birmingham. They constantly attempt to poison people yet somehow fail every time (Sergei and Yulia Skripal are still alive by the way) and Putin seems to have a success rate similar when it comes to killing his enemies, as that of the Coyote in the Roadrunner cartoons. It honestly makes you think the cold war could have ended in the 60s if Kuschev had been nudged into starting a traditional land war, gotten bogged down and led to the USSR collapsing before the Beatles could sing about being back in it.
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