Monday, November 22, 2010


"Que la justice fasse son travail," said the president yesterday. All necessary documents would be made available to investigators, he indicated. Yet today François Fillon refused to allow Judge Van Ruymbeke to search the DGSE for relevant material. And Sarkozy seems to have lost his temper with journalists who are trying to link him to the affair. It is indeed exasperating to be called upon to prove a negative, but the Law of Scandal suggests that transparency is the best way to dispel rumors. Open the lid and false rumors go "pschitt," to quote Jacques Chirac. Keep the lid on and the pressure builds until something blows. The next weeks should be interesting.

ADDENDUM: A presidential moment:

Sarkozy: affaire Karachi
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Vidange des cerveaux

The Institut Montaigne claims that French academics are abandoning a sinking ship:
The report, by the Institut Montaigne, a leading independent research group in Paris, found that academics constitute a much larger percentage of French émigrés to the United States today than 30 years ago. According to the report, between 1971 and 1980, academics represented just 8 percent of the departing population; between 1996 and 2006, they represented 27 percent of the departing population. 

But some parts of the ship seem to sinking faster than others:

“Biology and economics are poorly recognized in France,” said Thomas Philippon, a French economist who began teaching finance at New York University Stern School of Business in 2003. “But the problem also comes from the fact that the French labor market doesn’t value Ph.D. theses.”