Blog Archives

A fun Cultural Note!

unnamedMost English-speaking French have studied British- style English, which can lead to communication innuendos with speakers of American-style English. For example, in the United States, a presentation that “bombs” has failed but in England it means it has succeeded.  😂

Some words in French and English may have the same roots, but different meanings or connotations. If you don’t speak French don’t be offended too easily. If a Fren ch person tells you “I demand that you do this or that”, it simply means that “ask” as “Demander” means “ask” in French and it can be quite confusing for French people 🙂

On the other hand, don’t think that an English word will have the same translation in French for example, “bathroom”. If you ask for the “bathroom” i.e. “salle de bain” to a French person, it will not be understood as the restrooms.

Have a lovely week

Frenchy

@ Bientôt

Our French Celebs: Meet Liliane Bettencourt

liliane-bettencourt-parce-quelle-le-vaut-bienLiliane Bettencourt 

She is the woman who gave new definition to cosmetics after she inherited L’Oreal which was founded by her father Eugene Schueller. It is one of the biggest and largest beauty and cosmetic company in the world. Her company’s net worth of $ 30 billion makes her the richest woman in the world. She and her family currently own above 30% shares of L’Oreal which has only been increasing thanks to boost in French market for cosmetics. The elderly widow also has fought legal battles against her family due to guardianship of her money.

Since then, she had faced intense media scrutiny and publicity over her relationship with François-Marie Banier, the estrangement with her daughter Françoise and her alleged funding of conservative French politicians, including former French president Nicolas Sarkozy.

She founded with her husband the Bettencourt Schueller Foundation (la Fondation Bettencourt Schueller) to support and develop medical, cultural and humanitarian projects. The Foundation is based in Neuilly-sur-Seine (92), France. The Foundation, which benefits from assets of €150 million and an annual budget of approx €15 million devotes approximately 55% of its funds to scientific education and research, 33% to humanitarian and social projects and 12% to culture and arts. It sponsors prizes through which funds are disbursed to various recipients.

http://www.fondationbs.org 

Forbes ranks Bettencourt at 7th in its list of the world’s wealthiest persons with an estimated fortune of US$38.8 billion(as of 28 June 2016). As of 2016, she is the top female billionaires woman in the world, and is also the richest person in France.

Our Frenchies on Liliane 🙂 Enjoy!

“Je suis content pour la Bettencourt. Si seulement elle pouvait vendre ses produits moins chers….”

I’m happy for the Bettencourt. If only she could sell her products cheaper 

***

“Riche et gâteux ou pauvre et brillant? Que choisir?”

Rich and spoiled or poor and smart? What to choose?

***

“Pour information, le patrimoine de L. Bettancourt équivaut au PIB annuel d’un pays comme la Lettonie (membre de l’UE), ou de la Côte d’Ivoire (25 millions d’habitants). Ceci dit, ça reste un peu inférieur aux bénéfices d’Apple en 2013. Par ailleurs, il y a 10 personnes plus riches qu’elle dans le monde (Bill Gates a un patrimoine équivalent au PIB de Cuba, classée au 66e rang mondial). Accessoirement, le chiffre d’affaire de Wal Mart ou de Shell en 2013 était comparable au PIB de la Belgique.”

For information, the heritage of L. Bettencourt is equivalent to the annual GDP of a country like Latvia (EU member), or Côte d’Ivoire (25 million inhabitants). That said, it’s still a little lower than Apple’s profits in 2013. There are ten more richer people in the world (Bill Gates has a heritage equivalent to Cuba’s GDP, ranked 66th in the world). Incidentally, sales of Wal-Mart or Shell in 2013 were comparable to the GDP of Belgium

***

“On peut espérer que la nouvelle loi travail permet un accroissement de ces fortunes.”

One can hope that the new labor law will allow an increase of her fortunes.

Comments from Le Monde Newspaper. 

 

 

Top 5 funny facts about the Bretons

As a proper Parisian, we like stereotyping our co-citizen… And here I am starting with our Bretons… Finish with Politics! Let’s have some fun!  #happyfriday !!! #justforfun.
Enjoy!
1) In Brittany, it rains all the time!

104377412_o
Well, it does not rain all the time. I can certainly say that the Bretons have less sunshine that the rest of France. A bit like at his cousin Great Britain.
2) All Bretons are alcoholic

6-1.1.14_bretagne1
How could they be alcoholic if they only drink cider?
3) All Britons wear a Bigouden

bigoudene_bigoudene
Et alors? Bretons are launching a trend.
4) In Brittany, we only drink cider!

8479550e
Well? How much cider does it take to get drunk? At least we are not pissed after two glasses of wine like our friends in Bordeaux.
5) Bretons only eat crêpe (pancakes)!

crepes-bretonnes-mini

Breakfast: crêpe with sugar, crêpe in maple syrup. Lunch: ham-cheese crêpe. Dinner: crêpe with foie gras … Et alors??? On adore….
XoXo
#happyfriday #frenchchic #frenchattitude

Corporate Tax or L’impôt sur les sociétés

Well, corporate tax is impôt sur les sociétés which literally means “Tax on the companies”.

Screen Shot 2017-05-01 at 15.04.29

PS: one of the highest in the world. I am sure the new president will take care of it like Trump in the USA. 🙂

Frenchie

XoXo

Congratulations Mr. Macron!

Screen Shot 2017-04-20 at 14.50.06

 

Screen Shot 2017-05-11 at 21.59.01

Emmanuel Macron was elected France’s youngest president last Sunday. Beating far-Right rival Marine Le Pen in a positive result (more than 3/4 of votes) that will have far-reaching consequences for Brexit and Europe. Despite the vast margin of the final result, Le Pen’s score nonetheless marked a historic high for the French far right. She has taken 11m votes, double that of her father, Jean-Marie Le Pen, when he reached the presidential run-off in 2002 against Mr. Chirac.

The results are even more dramatic in London were more than 95% of French Londoners voted for Mr. Macron.

unnamed 16.54.59

Though Mr. Macron called for unity, hundreds of protesters gathered in the Place de la République last Monday to demonstrate against him. The reality that one-third of voters chose neither Macron nor Le Pen, with 12 million abstaining and 4.2 million spoiling ballot papers.

Despite her defeat, Le Pen’s score made her leader of “the biggest opposition force” in France which gives a whole new face to French politic.

Now, new challenges are heading up for Macron, with a strong hard left and far right, he will struggle to win a parliamentary majority for his new political movement En Marche! (On the Move!). We wish him all the best and hope for the best future for My Douce France, Le pays de mon enfance.

Frenchy

 Shooting in Champs-Elysees

A couple of days before the first round French Presidential Elections, Central Paris became a victim of terrorism once again making the country the most unsafe town of the E.U to live in.

According to the Pierre-Henry Brandet, of the French interior ministry, Thursday 21st night at 9:30, in Champs-Elysees, one gunman named Karim Cheurfi, with automatic Kalashnikov assault rifle, came suddenly from nowhere and started shooting on a police van and killed one police officer and wounded couple of them. Not just that, he also fired on the civilians standing nearby. France police officials retaliated in response and he was shot dead in no time.

According to witnesses, Cheurfi parked a car behind a police van on the Champs-Elysees last  Thursday  21st April night and emerged from it with a Kalashnikov rifle and started firing the window of the van. The police officer who was sitting on his seat died immediately.

c2176f8d6ec6510a916cace550e674a56e8b2601370fefb8e4ce11c4d593de01_3935708Karim Cheurfi was born on New Year’ Eve in 1977 in the Livry-Gargan (93160) Suburb of north-eastern Paris.

He was living in the eastern suburb of Chelles after emerging from prison in October 2015 and his lawyer has revealed that he was having a mental disorder and was psychologically ill.

Hours after the attack, news came out from the source close to CNN that the Cheurfi was a French national and he had charges against him of shooting two officers in 2001 after being stopped by a police car. During the interrogation, he also snatched the gun of the police officer and shot him three times.

ISIS issued a statement claiming the responsibility of the attack and said that it was carried out by an Islamic State fighter. The claim came from the statement by the media wing Amaq of the ISIS.

The suspect, who was shot dead by French police, was on the radar of the French domestic security service DGSI, the source said.

Champs-Elysees is one of the major tourist attractions in Paris and millions of visitors visit here, especially the iconic Arc de Triomphe monument. However, the place is shut down by the officials due to security reasons.

The US President Donald Trump did write a tweet by predicting that the attack would have a big effect on presidential election which in fact at least on the first round didn’t have much of an impact since the poll were indeed right.

France has been a victim of Islamic terrorism since 2012 and there is visible anger in the citizens.

Screen Shot 2017-04-29 at 00.07.21.png

The First round of the French Presidential elections is over and results are interesting. Clearly, no one party has gained clear majority and two candidates Marine Le Pen and Emmanuel Macron will runoff for the next round on 7th May. As many election analysts had predicted, the Champs Elysees attacks did not make much impact on the minds of France citizens. Marine Le Pen, the hardcore right wing candidate is on the 2nd run than Emmanuel Macron who got 24.01% votes compared to Le Pen’s 21.30%.

 

French Election: Religion & Politics?

Screen Shot 2017-04-14 at 23.33.15.png

France goes to the polls in 10 days to elect a new president. Will the National Front’s Marine Le Pen pull off a Brexit-style victory?

French Ambassador in Dhaka Sophie Aubert was delivering a lecture on France’s foreign policy and its challenges at the Bangladesh Institute of International and Strategic Studies or BIISS in Dhaka.

Aubert said religion is a “complex issue”. “We must be very careful before the misuse and manipulation of religion at the political level.”

France is at war with this jihadist movement outside the country: Mauritania, Mali, Niger, Burkina Faso and Chad. In the Middle East, in Iraq and Syria. Despite the fact that the French are not “really” living these wars, they’ve already been labelled as War of Religion or the “Invisible WW3”.

In fact, most of Le Pen’s voters are rejecting Islam and its conviction, still shaken by the attacks which happened in Nice or Paris and also more recently in London and really concerned by the national security.

The three biggest concerns of the French are:
1 – immigration (coming first for 38% of the population)
2 – Security (coming first for 30% of the population)
3 – unemployment rate (coming first for 12% of the population)

Having these numbers in mind, the French population also feel like they are facing a cultural and ideological threat with Islam first being the most practised religion in France feeling like the country is losing its identity. In fact, a lot defended her when she mentioned back three years that Muslims holding prayer services in the streets of Paris (Chateau Rouge) felt “like an occupation.”

On April 23, the French will go to the polls to cast their ballot for one of eleven candidates, four of whom are polling at or near 20 percent. Two weeks later, they will choose between the top two vote-getters. Any of the top four could conceivably make it to the second round.

The population is sick of the traditional politics: left wing, right wing… Bye! They ready to give a chance to “newest” parties such as Le Front National and Le Parti Communiste! Of Mélanchon. The latter had a dramatic seven-point surge recently, unexpectedly turning France’s roller-coaster presidential race into a possible four-way contest where anybody could be elected really. And 32% of the French population still doesn’t know who they are voting for…. Scary…

Well, religion doesn’t govern our politics nowadays but certainly dictates the community’s choices regarding candidates. Hence Le Pen’s rise these last couple of years.

À vous de juger!

Frenchie xxx

French Election Coverage: Meet Fillon, (Part 3) D-23

Screen Shot 2017-03-29 at 13.07.32

François Charles Amand Fillon was one of the most promising names when it came to French politics, and he was the former prime minister of France who served from 2007 to 2012 and currently he is the presidential candidate from the Republican party of France. He has years of experience in handling some of the key portfolios in French government like education minister and labour minister and ecology and sustainable development minister in different regimes.

FACTS:

–    His wife is Welsh from Llanover, near Abergavenny.

–    They have five children

–    They live a 12th-Century manor house near Le Mans in western France

PRESIDENTIAL RACE:

He was considered as a third when he nominated himself for the 2016 Republic Presidential Primary, and in a week’s time, he was the favourite candidate from the Republican Party when Alain Juppé supported him after the run-off on 27 November 2016. In the months of November and December 2016, he was the frontrunner for the presidential election of 2017, but the series of disclosures of political scandals which burst to its paroxysm today seem to ruin his chances suddenly went to the backseat in the presidential elections.

François Fillon has always denied and has refused to step aside for another candidate, complaining instead that he was the victim of a “political assassination” and added, “if investigation reports prove me guilty, I will leave the presidential election.”

Two of the most efficient and renowned exist polls Ifop, and BVA has suggested that he will be thrown out by the people in the first round of elections that will be held in April 2017. According to sources, even his party members from Les Républicains party are against him and put pressure on him to leave the presidential candidacy since the allegations were made public by the leading newspaper Le Canard Enchaîné.

It will be interesting to see the results in the first round of the election and the time will tell whether people accepts François Fillon or not. If he loses the elections, it may be the end of his political career.

IMPORTANT POINTS OF HIS POLITICAL PLANS:

–    cutting half a million public sector jobs, scrapping the 35-hour work week and remove the wealth tax (ISF).

–    He wants to strip jihadists returning from the wars in Iraq or Syria of their French nationality

–    Require parents in receipt of social allowances to agree to a “parental responsibility contract”, to tackle children’s absenteeism or behaviour “disrespectful of the values of the French republic”.

–    Fillon wants to engage with Russia by lifting EU sanctions and help Syrian President Bashar al-Assad to defeat the Islamic State (IS).

 

WHAT HAVE THE FILLONS DONE WRONG?

Nothing, say Francois Fillon and his wife, who insist everything was above board. But prosecutors have decided there is sufficient evidence to open a full judicial inquiry into abuse of public funds and on 15 March the examining magistrate is expected to place him under formal investigation.

The question is: did Penelope Fillon do the work she was paid for? Satirical weekly Le Canard Enchaîné alleged in late January that she did not – and got €831,400 (£710,000; $900,000) for her trouble.

She was employed as her husband’s parliamentary assistant from 1988-90 and again in 1998-2002 and then by his successor, Marc Jouland, from 2002-2007.

She worked again for Mr Fillon from 2012-13. That is all very well if she did the work, but one report suggests she did not have a parliamentary pass or a work email.

According to Le Canard Enchaîné, she also pocketed €100,000 for writing just a handful of articles for a literary review La Revue des Deux Mondes, owned by a billionaire friend of the family, Marc Ladreit de Lacharriere.

Today, Penelope Fillon was officially charged with embezzlement of public funds, a coup de grace for Fillon’s election himself charged earlier this month! These elections couldn’t be more exciting and uncertain.

DID YOU KNOW?

Marine Le Pen is also under investigation for allegedly using European Parliament staff allowances to pay for FN party employees, including a personal bodyguard.

WHAT THE FRENCHIES THINK OF THIS WHOLE ORDEAL?

900 000 Euros dans la poche de fillon?, ok, c’est pas cher à payer par rapport à ce que Hollande et sa clique nous ont fait perdre et nous fera perdre Macron et son programme qui n’a aucun sens et je ne parle même pas de MLP. Fillon est la seule alternative.

900 000 Euros in Fillon’s pocket ?, ok, it is acceptable compared to what Holland and his clique have made us lose and will make us lose with Macron and its program that makes no sense, and I do not speak even about MLP. Fillon is the only alternative.

***

Ce que cet article ne dit pas:

Si Penelope Fillon est mise en examen par les juges d’instruction, ceux-ci, par contre, ont enfreint les lois de procédure pénale:

– ils n’ont instruit qu’à charge;

– ils n’ont pas tenu compte de la présomption d’innocence;

– enfin, ils n’ont pas respecté la séparation des pouvoirs (mais là, depuis Mitterrand, la France a l’habitude, au plus grand étonnement, d’ailleurs, des démocraties européennes).

Qui dira encore que la Justice française dans le cas présent est absolument impartiale et politiquement indépendante???

What this article does not say:
If Penelope Fillon is under investigation by the investigating judges, they, on the other hand, have infringed the laws of criminal procedure:
They have instructed only on charges;
– they did not take into account the presumption of innocence;
– finally, they have not respected the separation of powers (but since Mitterrand, France is accustomed, to the greatest astonishment, moreover, of the other European democracies).
Who will say that the French Justice, in this case, is absolutely impartial and politically independent ???

***

Demander a Cahuzac, Tevennoud, …

Ensuite mise en examen ne veut pas dire condamnée!

Ask this to Cahuzac, Tevennoud, …
Then indictment does not mean condemned!

***

C’est émouvant le jusqu’au boutisme acharné des fillonistes……

Malheureusement la prévarication, l’enrichissement personnel la malhonnêteté et le clientélisme de Monsieur Fillon sont dorénavant connus de tous.

It is moving how the hard line attitude of Fillon’s fan can go …
Unfortunately, the prevarication, the personal enrichment the dishonesty and the clientelism of Mr Fillon are henceforth known to all.

***

Les emplois fictifs dans le privé n’ont rien d’illégaux. Des individus au placard dans les grands groupes il y en a des centaines. Dans les années 90 la société qui m’employait , et dont l’Etat était actionnaire, a été contrainte d’accepter l’embauche d’un ami du ministre de l’industrie au sein de son état major . Ce type ne foutait rien et était grassement payé. Et ça a duré 4 ans .

The fictitious jobs in the private sector are not illegal. There are hundreds of individuals in the closet in large groups. In the 90s the company that employed me, and whose state was a major shareholder, was forced to accept the hiring of a friend of the Minister of Industry within his staff. This guy did not give a damn and was well paid to do nothing; it lasted four years.

Sacré French 🙂

Did you know?

Screen Shot 2017-03-27 at 23.08.24.png

French Election coverage: Meet Marine Le Pen (Part 1) – D – 28

Unknown

As the French presidential elections becoming the talk of South Kensington, there are many speculations, and polls from agencies, reporters and news channels across the world are making predictions. The leader of the Right National Front Party, Mrs Marine Le Pen is considered as one of the most potential candidates, and here, we have tried to give our readers some crucial facts that can help them to know more about her.

• Her full real name is Marion Anne Perrine Le Pen
• At the beginning of her career as a lawyer, she volunteered for immediate summary trials. In this context, she is led to defend a foreigner in an irregular situation and ironically wins these cases 8 times out of 10.
• She’d been known for being a party animal for years; she inherited of the nickname of “lofteuse” French slang for a party animal.
• Five years ago, she took over the party from her father, and the founder of the Front National Party Jean-Marie Le Pen and she has inherited politics from him. She has started attending FN meetings at the age of 13 along with her father, and it has shaped her political career to a great extent.
• A comedian known for making Nazi-evocative gesture “La Quenelle” is a big fan of Marine and the National Front.

Don’t be complacent… We’ve seen with Trump’s victory in the USA that today everything’s possible. People are not trusting the traditional media influences and articles anymore. They look way further and try to understand in their own way the world. Demonising a politician is not anymore a way to eliminate and bury him from the politic scene anymore!

Secularism is threatened by the very presence of Islam which has become the first practised religion of France, enough to scare the working and middle classes.

The immigration issue and fear from immigrants, especially Muslims (again!) and the current antipathy in EU has put forward Marine Le Pen.

All in all, France’s reality today is immigration, terrorism, insecurity, …

The French are scared, so afraid that the taboo of a far-right presidency no longer holds in France and her 144 commitments to the French People, Le Pen has promised the following:

• She will protect France from globalisation and reduce taxes and enhance welfare payments for working class.
• Also, she has announced that she will make the procedure of becoming a French citizen tough and deport all the illegal immigrants from the country.
• Hold a referendum to revise the Constitution
• Restore the automatic expulsion of foreign criminals and offenders. Establish bilateral agreements that allow sentenced foreigners to serve their sentences in their countries of origin.
• Make it impossible to regularise or naturalise illegal foreigners. Simplify and automate their expulsion.
• Permanently pave all public buildings of the French flag and remove the European flag.
• She had welcomed the exit of the Britain from the European Union and promised that Frexit is next if she comes in power.

Her political programme seems to reassure the people, and according to some polls and election experts, she is most probably going to be in the final round of the presidential elections in May.

The world is changing….

Frenchie
The first round of presidential elections will be held in France on April 22. In case no party wins the majority, two candidates with highest votes will contest for the second round on May 6.

French Attitude toward Le Pen

J’adhère à 1000% car pour devenir français, il faut le mériter!!!
beaucoup prennent la nationalité française pour bénéficier des avantages,?
Qui peuplent nos prisons ?
On voit ce qui se passe avec les attentats, ce sont pour beaucoup des français d’origne…..
OUI au FN

I adhere to (Le Pen’s political views) 1000% because to become French, you have to deserve !!!
Many take French citizenship to enjoy the benefits?
Who populate our prisons?
We see what happens with the terrorist attacks, they are for many French people.
YES to the FN

***

Je ne suis pas contre l’idée mais qui décide si machin ou truc est méritant ou pas, et selon quels critères ? Elle a précisé quelque chose à ce sujet ? Parce que c’est là que ça devient intéressant!

I am not against the idea (of toughening the procedure of becoming a French citizen ) but who decides whether or not X or Y deserve the citizenship, and according to what criteria? Did she say something about that? Because that’s where it gets interesting!

Le pen continue le business du père de gagner des sous en participant aux élections mais sans se faire élire.Fillon est un corrompu mais qui fait dans l’artisanat local alors macron fait dans la multinationale.

Le Pen continues her father’s business of winning pennies by participating in elections but without getting elected. Fillon is a corrupt and excels in local craftsmanship then Macron excels in the multinational.

A choisir entre Marine et Macron le menteur destructeur cynique et impitoyable.. il n’y a pas à hésiter !! C’est Marine . Avec Macron, c’est la mort et la misère assurée pour beaucoup de français et françaises.

Between Marine and Macron the cynical destructive ruthless liar  .. there is no hesitation !! It’s Marine. With Macron, it is death and misery assured for many French.

Moi ça me dérange qu’un pays étranger qui ne recherche que notre ruine et la destruction de l’Union Européenne finance un parti politique qui justement… prone le fin de l’Europe! D’autant plus quand ce pays n’est ni un ami ni une démocratie exemplaire, loin s’en faut, et qu’il fait déjà peur à tous ses voisins, dont certains sont membres… de l’Union Europénne! Ça a comme une odeur de haute trahison…

It disturbs me that a foreign country that only seeks our ruin and the destruction of the European Union finances a political party that precisely … want to the end Europe! Especially when this country is neither a friend nor an exemplary democracy, far from it, and that scares all its neighbors, some of which are members … of the European Union! It smells like high treason …