Filed Under Life
The O'Reilly France Boycott: Three Years Later
Posted December 11, 2005
The Port City Of Nice
Children sing on their way to school, enjoying the warmth of the Mediterranean climate. But their songs are the sole note of happiness in this formerly bustling city. A stroll down to the docks indicates an economy shut down, cut off from the rest of the world. Container ships don't come anymore, and the French prostitutes who normally entertain sailors from all ports of call are listless, sighing from their second floor balconies as they smoke the last of their rationed cigarettes, fearful that their government subsidies will come to an end.
It has been almost three years since Bill O'Reilly issued his famous boycott of France. Unemployment has skyrocketed, and the nation has developed twin plagues of obesity and alcoholism, due to increased consumption of cheese, chocolate, and wine, their main exports, and the only foods available in wide circulation. Even the United Nations has asked O'Reilly to lift his sanctions, which were first placed when France refused to support America's war in Iraq.
"We have been cooperating with every other issue on the War Against Terror," complains President Jacques Chirac, who has worked fruitlessly to reinstate normal trade relations with the rest of the world, traveling personally to O'Reilly's New York studio to plead on the popular O'Reilly Factor. "I would even, as he says, 'Shut up', but he will not listen." Chirac's political future would be doomed, but no other French politician wants to take his place. Since the embargo, the French have lost McDonalds, Starbucks, and Nikeville, all foundations of a civil, democratic society. Morale is so low, 'Boycott France' bumper stickers can be seen adorning many French vehicles, which are parked or abandoned since fuel supplies have long since evaporated.
The rest of Europe fears displeasing the powerful television and radio personality, knowing that any slight could lead to a trade blockade. In Germany, the new Chancellor Angela Merkel was almost certainly hand-picked by O'Reilly and U.S. President George Bush, long considered his right-hand man. All attempts to contact Mr. O'Reilly for this article have failed. It is believed that he is fighting alongside U.S. Special Forces in Afghanistan.
On a tour of the once romantic Champs-Elysees, which has been reduced to torched cars after recent riots, you can see that these fields are heavenly no more. French Writer Michel Houellebecq, author of several scandalous novels, has been censored by his government, in hopes that he will no longer be perceived as competition to Mr. O'Reilly's more scurrilous work .
A few brave nations, such as Haiti, have reached out to their former sponsor, to provide food and medical aid to the French, but France's need is much greater than the small Caribbean nation can provide.
"We hope that Mr. O'Reilly will lift his sanctions once the war in Iraq is over," says President Chirac, as he enjoys a rare slice of prosciutto that was smuggled in from Italy, but he then admitted it would be too long to wait. "Or perhaps, the international community will stand up against this tyrant."
That may be so. But for now, France remains a forgotten nation.
copyright 2004-2017 G. Xavier Robillard