Monday, July 23, 2007

Some Friendly Advice for French President Nicolas Sarkozy

The new government of France claims to have identified a problem: the French think too much. But it looks to me like France's leaders are going about solving the problem the wrong way. The NY Times reports:
In proposing a tax-cut law last week, Finance Minister Christine Lagarde bluntly advised the French people to abandon their “old national habit.”

“France is a country that thinks,” she told the National Assembly. “There is hardly an ideology that we haven’t turned into a theory. We have in our libraries enough to talk about for centuries to come. This is why I would like to tell you: Enough thinking, already. Roll up your sleeves.”

Citing Alexis de Tocqueville’s “Democracy in America,” she said the French should work harder, earn more and be rewarded with lower taxes if they get rich.
Making speeches citing de Tocqueville is no way fix France's "thinking problem." If the new leaders of France sincerely want French people to think less, I suggest they look into launching a French version of Fox News. That's the tried and proven means of turning citizens into uncritical thinkers.

President Sarkozy ought to give Fox News owner Rupert Murdoch a call. Perhaps Murdoch could also be talked into buying Le Monde.

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