...Continued from page 1

Holdup of the Week

The Biennale des Antiquaries was wending its quietly luxurious and refined way through its biannual show last week at the Carrousel du Louvre. Around 15:00 last Tuesday five of six eastern European 'monsieurs' appeared in the room where there was a display case belonging to the jeweler Chopard.

They engaged the various employees with requests for additional information about pieces on display. While otherwise engaged, two other 'monsieurs' engaged a display case containing two diamonds, one of 47 carats and the other of 30. There was a distraction, and poof! The five or six monsieurs and the two diamonds were no longer there.

There was no alarm on the glass display case, and the room was not equipped with video cameras. Police borrowed videos from the nearby Cartier display area, and from the Carrousel du Louvre's set. The police aren't saying what they've seen on the videos, if anything.

The thieves even didn't bother to take a rose diamond, worth a lot more, from the same case. The two that are missing were estimated to be worth 11.5 million euros. The jeweler's insurance company visited the site, to check the security precautions, after the theft.

'Liberal' Conservatives

Not everybody on the right–wing is perfectly happy with Président Jacques Chirac and the Prime Minister, Jean–Pierre Raffarin. Last year a group of economically–liberal conservatives led by UMP deputy Herve Novelli were noisily negative about the 35–hour work week.

This year as the Assembly National resumes its sessions the same group is demanding that the 'reform' ofphoto, fruit stand, grocery the 'rich–tax' include a 50 percent exoneration of it, if the money is invested. They also want the government to institute a 'minimum service' law for striking transport workers.

For fruit and veg, every night is a Nuit Blanche.

They want civil servants to work to the same rules as in the private sector, and the want the government's ENA – administration school – turned into a business school.

Wherever they where, there were 800 of them and they whistled against the 'two lost years' of Raffarin's government and against the 'promises not kept' by the president, and against the 50 percent of deputies who are also civil servants.

A Quiet Election

The French Senat is a funny old duck. Senators are elected not universally but by 50,733 'grands electors' who are themselves elected. The Senat is reforming itself, by reducing terms to six years from nine, and dropping the minimum age to 30. The average age is 54, and there are 97 senators over 70.

There are supposed to be more ladies elected to the Senat too, because that's what half of senators are supposed to be. But men head the 'lists,' and will even create dissident 'lists' so they can remain heads of them. Ending a political career in the clubby senat is the dream of many deputies.

Of the 321 seats up for election, there were 162 belonging to the UMP party. The question was, a week ago Sunday, howphoto, tabac, le dome many would the UMP retain, after losing in three other elections this year? In order to keep a majority the conservative UMP was worried that it might have to cohabit with François Bayrou's liberal–conservative UDF.

Nuit Blanches are made for smokers.

As it turned out the UMP managed to keep a majority of two seats, although it lost three seats for Paris. The UDF got three extra seats and lost one. The Socialists gained a dozen seats and Les Verts bettered their score too. Ladies upped their score too, from 34 before to 56 last Sunday.

Notably reelected was Prime Minister Jean–Pierre Raffarin. But he must resign his seat because it looks like he will continue on as Prime Minister for a while longer. Some other government ministers who won Senat seats may chose to leave the government for the safer Senat.

The former president of the Senat, Christian Poncelet, easily overcame competition from another UMP candidate, to win reelection as head of the Senat. I'm looking forward to his next tree planting in the Senat's garden, the Luxembourg.

horz line
Go to page : 1 - 2
In Metropole Paris
Latest Issue
2008 Issues
2007 | 2006 | 2005
2004 | 2003 | 2002
2001 | 2000 | 1999
1998 | 1997 | 1996
In Metropole Paris
About Metropole
About the Café Club
Links | Search Site
The Lodging Page
Paris Museums List
Metropole's 1996 Tours
Metropole's 2003 Tours
Support Metropole
Metropole's Books
Shop with Metropole
Metropole's Wine
metropole paris goodblogweek button
Send email concerning the
contents to: Ric Erickson, Editor.
Metropole Midi © 2014
– unless stated otherwise.
logo, metropole sml midi logo No matter how good it tastes,
there is no such thing
as a free lunch.
Waldo Bini