Five days after the narrow vote for Brexit, the alternatives seem to be: General Election, palace revolution, or both. Outraged globalizers, champagne Leftists, the bourgeois bohème, the young: all are frothing with demands for a second referendum. This last, in the unlikely event it took place, would be felt as a direct insult by the millions of Brexiteers who have just voted to leave the European Union. It would confirm their worst fears, if confirmation were needed, that they are the objects of contempt in the minds of their betters. No; it would be preferable for Parliament to deliver the same insult, but in its own more sophisticated way, by taking any one of the legal paths open to it. A do-nothing-dominated Westminster could simply ignore the referendum result, or cost the exchequer millions by calling an irrelevant General Election. Either way, the jilted Brexiteers would be left fuming and impotent; their only recourse the spray-can and the remaining blank walls. A General Election, for which all major parties would campaign to stay inside the European Union, would leave the incandescent Brexiteers with nobody to vote for except UKIP. The turn-out for such an election would be hard to predict: high on one assumption, low-to-vanishing on another.
Albert Einstein’s predicted gravitational waves were first detected experimentally by the American LIGO team earlier this year. LIGO (Laser Interferometer Gravitational-Wave Observatory) comprises two huge ground installations in the United States, in which hydraulic rams are used to stabilize the four-kilometer-long arms of the interferometers against terrestrial perturbations. A prodigious feat of engineering in itself.
In a news release, 7th June, 2016, the LIGO team congratulated the European Space Agency on the proof-of-principle of its space-based interferometer, Lisa Pathfinder (Laser Interferometer Space Antenna). Le Figaro’s senior science reporter, Tristan Vey, explains.
INTERVIEW – In the opinion of the expert on Islam, Gilles Kepel, if further bloody attacks are perpetrated, it is not impossible that the situation will explode.
After the Übermensch, the Übermuslim. Here, translated from a recent article in Le Monde, is a prominent academic’s illuminating psychoanalytical view from inside the minds of the jihadis. It’s complicated. Continue reading “Inside Looking Out”
The Stations of the Shining Path that are leading Europe into the fog of nihilism, are set out here by Éric Zemmour in a book review for Le Figaro.
Et tu, Franciscus? Has the pope subscribed to Frau Merkel’s Rainbow Fallacy? This article by Yohann Rimokh in Le Figaro sheds some light on the origins and interpretation of French laïcité, taking in the pope’s interview of 16th May in the catholic daily, La Croix, and the fate of Europe in passing. In the view of The Europeans, the 1905 French law of secularism — laïcité — has been detached from its intentions and developed into a political therapy: one designed to suppress Christianity and irrigate Islam. Proof that the drafters of Constitutions rarely see further than their noses. The miracle of the British Constitution is that it is unwritten, unsanctified and therefore subject to alteration, with no special fuss, by simple Acts of Parliament. A sovereignty worth preserving. Continue reading “French Laïcité Overdone?”
Dark pages that seem to have been torn from some postmodernist catalogue of verities are nowadays thick in the political wind, as threatening as Hitchcock’s birds. But this leaf‡ from the Bishop of Rome is distinguished by its authenticity. Un pape pour tous? If so, his distance from the pre-November convictions — now unceremoniously dumped — of the French gauchiste state, must be thin indeed.
To be wilfully blind, even now, to the risks of attempted vivre-ensemble on which the pope is cheerfully insisting, would require the sort of political hubris of which only Frau Merkel is capable to be maintained indefinitely and throughout Europe. This clearly cannot happen. Europe will never again be able to relax as it did in the decades of its stable prosperity.
One is left with the distinct impression that the pontiff has aligned himself politically with Frau Merkel and the Archduke of Brussels, M. Jean-Claude Juncker. Mere mortals perhaps ought not to guess at the pope’s personal frame of reference: nevertheless, some of the furniture is clearly recognisable — South America and the Vatican. Neither of these bearings is particularly useful in making policy for Europe.
Has the Bishop of Rome joined the Coalition of the Blind, whose individual instincts are first and foremost self-referential? But let the pope opine: freedom of speech belongs to him too, even though in stopping little short of a public endorsement of the Merkel-Juncker line on immigration, he himself menaces that very same freedom.
‡The article, translated from the catholic daily, La Croix, is an extract from the Pope’s interview of 16th May.
Launched on Friday [15th April], the experiment will attempt to falsify the “principle of equivalence”, which is the foundation of the theory of General Relativity.
Einstein had better watch out. Built by Cnes, the French space agency, a small satellite, Microscope, is expected to lift off on Friday evening [15th April] from Kourou in French Guiana, on board a Soyuz rocket, with the unbridled ambition of questioning the foundation on which General Relativity is built: the principle of equivalence. What is this, exactly?
Multiculturalism as Performance Art : Le Figaro has published brief excerpts from Le Multiculturalisme Comme Religion Politique (Multiculturalism as a Political Religion) by the Canadian sociologist Mathieu Bock-Côté, who wonderfully evokes the contemporary West as a collection of fictional performances, each with its own multicultural channel-surfing sociology. Continue reading “Rootless in Canada”