Wednesday, May 14, 2008

Attali's FART

Jacques Attali, who likes to think big, is proposing a new international grouping consisting of France, Germany, Russia, and Turkey. He sees an ideal marriage: the former two countries need markets and fuel, the latter two need modernization and a tether to the West. The EU won't accomplish this goal, says Attali, because it will be a thousand years before a majority in the West accepts Russia and Turkey. Better, then, to fob them off with a will o' the wisp than to reject them outright. Attali has a name for this figment of his imagination, cobbled together out of the initial letters of the four countries' names in French: FART. But surely Attali speaks English well enough to know that this is an unfortunate choice if he wants to ensure that his proposal doesn't faire pschitt on first exposure. It's a little suspicious, in any case, that France should come first. Why not RAFT? (Does it risk reminding people of Le radeau de la Méduse?) Or ARFT? (The dogs arft, the carvans passed.) No matter. The idea will dissipate as quickly as its namesake. It's perhaps uncouth of me even to notice it. In polite company the passing of gas is ignored, and Jacques Attali is a potent usine à gaz unto himself.


Anonymous said...

What's wrong with FART? It conveys well the idea of a friendly atmosphere. Décontracté, quoi.

Francofou said...

I agree with testsociety. It's a pet project.