Welcome to European Tribune. It's gone a bit quiet around here these days, but it's still going.
I'm watching Sarko now on TF1 answering questions from a multitude of citizens. Quelle banalite.
Questions like: "Why doesn't health insurance reimburse me for my viagra; it's important you know."

Hey, Grandma Moses started late!
by LEP on Mon Feb 5th, 2007 at 03:22:54 PM EST
Earlier (on Canal+) I saw, after a Sarko meeting, a shopkeeper complain only in France were shopkeepers obliged to follow rules for organising sales, (meaning The Sales), while in every other country they were free to do as they wished. Goddess Democracy, look down and weep!
by afew (afew(a in a circle)eurotrib_dot_com) on Mon Feb 5th, 2007 at 04:40:42 PM EST
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I don't understand what this means.
by the stormy present (stormypresent aaaaaaat gmail etc) on Mon Feb 5th, 2007 at 04:42:38 PM EST
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The context is lots of TV footage of Sarko meeting plain folks.

Plain folk shopkeeper (who looked a bit funny peculiar) was explaining why he wanted things to change (ie with Sarko). He believes France is the only country where sales (annual especially January Sales where goods are sold at cut price) are regulated by law/ by the administration. This was his example of what was wrong and what he wanted fixed.

by afew (afew(a in a circle)eurotrib_dot_com) on Mon Feb 5th, 2007 at 04:49:38 PM EST
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In many European countries there are strong regulations regarding, say, opening businesses on public holidays, how many weeks a year you can have a "sale", and the like. The regulations this [patently ignorant] shopkeeper is whining about are similar to (just to list the ones I can be sure about) Spanish and Italian regulations.

"It's the statue, man, The Statue."
by Migeru (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Mon Feb 5th, 2007 at 04:55:17 PM EST
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the Nordic countries don't have those regulations (which in Southern European countries have a background in the Catholic Church influence) and up there everybody is happy they haven't.

The counterpart of those lacking regulations is that the overtime for those working on Sundays is very well payed and cannot be used more than 4 weeks in a row. Nobody complains about that up there what I know of. And going to a mall a rainy Sunday is god for the economy but bad for whatever ideology that people shouldn't do that or that... (in that case religion and politically correct "leftism" are very similar). Those holiday regulations remind very much of New England's "blue laws". They are more the product of a culture than a social necessity.

Regarding sales I don't see the problem with having them anytime there is a surplus that need to be liquidated, as long as the price control is efficient.

Anyway skipping sales would force to lower the prices. I think it is the case in the US. For me sales are idiotic and forced consumtion the way it's organised in France. The poor people don't profit of them either because most of the time it's not sure that you have the capital necessary to buy the thing you need (at a better price) during the sale period. Because, when you are poor, it's difficult to save.

by oldfrog on Mon Feb 5th, 2007 at 10:46:26 PM EST
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