French parents: if you want to motivate your kids to study English, read the illuminating saga of the man the Élysée tried to get appointed to the European Court of Human Rights in order to create a safe deputy's seat for one of its own, Franck Louvrier. The court insists on fluency in English, but the Élysée's man only just signed up for a crash course in the tongue of Shakespeare upon learning of his nomination. The court wasn't amused and rejected him out of hand.
The story has a bit of fin de règne whiff about it. Could it be that les Sarkointimes like Louvrier are beginning to worry about how they'll earn their livings after the 2012 elections?