Friday, January 27, 2006

I guess that Minister of Defense of SCG Zoran Stankovic took the metophor of parallels between finding Mladic and finding a needle in a hay stack a bit too literally.

Tuesday, January 10, 2006

György Spiró has discovered the EU Commission for European Standards guidelines for writing a novel. It contains gems such as Art. 13 D):

"Positive Main Characters recommended exceptionally strongly:

a) A grandmother who underwent many terrible tribulations before the advent of the EU with her spiritual and moral integrity remaining intact, and who now educates her grandchildren single-handedly in such a manner that they become upright, law-abiding citizens of the European Union who meet the challenges of business life."


Art. 5 & 6:

5) The Novel must contain Dialogue and Author's Text. A work lacking either of these will not qualify as a Novel and will not be supported.

6) The ideal ratio between Dialogue and Author's Text is 2 : 1. A maximum divergence of + or 12 per cent is tolerable. Any divergence of a larger order will result in the disqualification of the work from European Union support.


The German state of Baden Württemberg introduced a "guiding" questionnaire for applicants for German citizenship. The questionnaire has been criticized by the Greens and others for being biased, as most questions appear to be focusing particular on the Muslim community and making personal views ("Gesinnung") a
criteria for citizenship.

I think the problem is not so much the questions, they are less problematic than some countries asking for cooking recipes as criteria of citizenship. I am just wondering how many "good Germans" would answer questions such as "Imagine your adult son tells you he is gay and wants to live with another man. How do you react?" or "Your daughter applies for a job in Germany. She is rejected while the job was offered to a black African from Somalia. How do you react?" in the desired way. What is the right answer to become an average German (or average West European in general)?

For the full list in German see the following link from the Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung

Sunday, January 08, 2006

The Muji shop in the UK has followed recent events and issued the Paris + Banlieu package to play with... I did not dare to open the bag and find out what it contains (burned cars, etc.)