Nosemonkey's EUtopia

In search of a European identity


Tony Blair: “Ich bin leidenschaftlicher Europ�er”

Pffft… German always sounds rude. Tony’s a leidenschaftlicher… heh! And it remains nearly as amusing when you find out that translates as “passionate” (according to Babelfish, at any rate – my German’s terrible…)

If you can read the linked article, it’s basically Blair’s pitch to the people of Germany. Sadly, though, it comes across as all “me me me”, not even acknowledging that Germany pays more than everyone, and that that’s unfair too. That’s the way to get ’em onside, Tony old boy. I’d have thought it was obvious.


  1. Yes, I could think of other words in a "Tony Blair: 'Ich bin …..' fill in the blanks competition.
    I have to disagree with you about the article – in German at least – I don't know who they got to translate it, but he's got all the key words for a German audience in there. And also a couple of key sentences:
    "I've already said that Britain is prepared to pay more, but only when it's given to the poor, not the rich countries." and
    "There's no reason why money should continue to be transfered from countries like Britain and Germany to other rich countries, as was proposed last week".
    And I have to say again how well it reads in German; he could have said that Germany pays the most, although that really isn't something that generally isn't mentioned that often here, and who knows what Bild edited out?

    Now, I'm going to turn my RSS feed reader off, since I installed the update notification this morning I've done absolutely no work at all.

  2. My German is certainly better than yours, it should also be better than Mr Inactualfact's (who still needs to work on his translating cricket terms into German ;-))

    First of all, I wouldn't take anything in "Bild" too serious. Brush up your German and try BildBlog, you'll soon understand why.

    In regards to "leidenschaftlich", yes, it is the same as "passionate". And as in English it has two meanings. So interpret that as you like ;-)

    About the linked article:

    It says "exclusively for Bild", which usually means as much as "has been published in 10 other newspapers last week".

    I've been away from Germany too long now, Neil probably has a better idea about the mood in Germany. But from what I hear from my parents and the little German media I still follow I have to agree with him to a large extent. However, I see other issues with the text.

    As Neil said, the money aspect is mentioned, but by far not as much as here in the UK. And I agree, I think he plays it right with his point about transfering money to other rich countries.

    There seems to be a lot of opposition against Turkey though (my impression), as well as a lot of complaints about "Eastern Europeans taking away our jobs". Playing the "we supported the enlargement" card might not be such a good idea here, especially not with the typical Bild reader.

    He also tries the job creation point, although that could be a tricky one, as a lot of Germans seem to prefer saving existing jobs instead of creating new ones. But that's a different topic.

  3. Ta – my one year of German aged 13/14 has been entirely forgotten, making perusal of the German press somewhat tricky. In fact, I find Spanish and Italian easier, and I've never had a single lesson in those…

    Anyway – "leaden shaft licker" – heh…

  4. Turkey is a big issue – it seems to be a significant part of the conservative campaign platform in the coming elections.

    And there is a general feeling that "Bruessels" has become too big, too remote, and too undemocratic. While most Germans still support the general idea of the EU, they are unhappy with its current incarnation and power structure.