Welcome To Zelo Street!

This is a blog of liberal stance and independent mind

Tuesday 14 April 2020

Brillo EU Border Whopper BUSTED

Why are so many supposedly intelligent and rational pundits so badly informed, not to say misinformed, when the subject is the EU? Perhaps it is just plain ignorance; maybe some believe what they want to believe, and, as Paul Simon nearly said, disregard the rest. Or maybe there is an element of deliberate and wilful misinformation. An insight into all of these possibilities has just been provided by someone who should know better.
That’s because the person concerned is Andrew Neil, former Murdoch editor and now overseeing the increasingly alt-right Spectator, as well as being retained by the BBC as a host and interviewer. Neil, who has a property in the south of France, was listening intently to yesterday’s broadcast by Président Macron. But for some reason, his translation from the French was less than Brill. But it was typical Brillo.
When even President Macron says supply chains will have to become more French, from food to pharma, then you know globalisation will be in serious retreat in 2020s” he began, but then it all went wrong as he added “And he announced French borders will remain closed til further notice. So Shengen [sic] suspended indefinitely”. But that is not what Macron said, and for someone who spends so much time in France, he should know.
As FranceInfo put it, “Les frontières avec les pays non européens resteront fermées jusqu'à nouvel ordre, annonce Emmanuel Macron”. One has to wonder which part of “les pays non européens” he does not understand. It’s about borders with non-European countries. So Schengen (note correct spelling) is not suspended indefinitely.
George Peretz QC pointed this out: “With ‘non-European countries’”. This became popular with QCs, as Jessica Simor demonstrated. “Andrew you have a house in the South of France, no? In which case you understand French, no? I listened and he was specific that he was referring ONLY to non-EU countries. Your tweet is wrong - so time to apologise and delete. Thanks”. Others then passed adverse comment on the Brillo boo-boo.
Adrian Owlett was one of them. “I don't think Mr Neil 'does' I'm sorry I made a mistake. It's now out there in the public domain - in writing - for the myopic Brexity herd to lap up”. Another observer added “He can’t even spell Schengen. I suspect he was paying attention neither in French class nor in geography class”. Cruel. Cruel but fair.
Anthony Zacharzewski was also unimpressed. “French borders with non European countries. Nothing to do with Schengen. Do better, please”. And then came another Tweeter all too willing to remind The Great Man why he should have understood what Macron said without the sub-titles. “Fake news. Don't you speak French? I used to see you on the Nice flight quite regularly going to your home there”. Ouch!
Why do Spectator pundits talk such unadulterated drivel about the EU? Oh I dunno, maybe someone to whom they all look up sets them a lousy example.

So perhaps, for once, Neil could admit he got it wrong - and say sorry.
Enjoy your visit to Zelo Street? You can help this truly independent blog carry on talking truth to power, while retaining its sense of humour, by adding to its Just Giving page at



Anonymous said...

The fat sweaty mendacious twat isn't "misinformed".

He's a bought-and-paid-for far right propagandist.

Corporate media are full of his mentality.

The Toffee (597) said...

On the flip(pant)side...

'French borders with NON European countries'?

Forgive me, does France border Chile? Guatemala? Laos? South Africa?

(Sarcasm font off)

To clear up any confusion the above may have caused (for the benefit of 'brillo' if his self-esteemed self is reading this)

As French overseas territories are given the exact same status as mainland French departments, Macron is obliged to say 'French borders with NON European countries' as opposed to 'Non EU countries' - which would surely only relate to Switzerland, if it were the case, wouldn't it?

rob said...

@ The Toffee

Would that apply to the French air/sea ports too where there will be virtual borders?