In yet another desperate attempt to keep the EU light-hearted (and yet another successful - if I do say so myself - attempt to avoid “serious EU issues”), hereby follows my second Th!nk About It Post. (Also posted on my boring blog here.)
Reading Mark Mardell’s Euroblog like a good Th!nker I today came across his most recent post entitled Learn EU-speak. My first thought was that the post was horrifically short at just 103 words - but then I realised it was less of a post and more of an advert for his Radio 4 appearance tomorrow:
What’s at the heart of the problem? Hear my answer on Radio 4 this Sunday 22 February at 10.45pm (2245 GMT) at the end of the Westminster Hour. It will be repeated on Wednesday 25 February at 8.45pm on Radio 4.
I appreciate that I have just copied his advert for more to see, but firstly, I wanted to demonstrate the blatantness of the advertisement-pretending-to-be-a-post, and secondly, because who can blame him?
(For non-Th!nkers, Mardell spoke to us in Brussels at the launch event and blogged about it here. I, for one, was slightly disappointed with his post. Most of the comments directed at him were about the lack of “official” bloggers’ links to “normal” (my term) bloggers and not only did he not mention this in the post, but neither did he link to any normaltons. Pah.)
Nevertheless, I am grateful for Mardell’s lack of words on the subject of, urm, words. For it means I can blog more about them here.
When I went to Brussels in December (independently of Th!nk About It, not independently of the EU) I was given the following:
This is, my friends, a book on EU Jargon entitled ‘E! Sharp Jargon Alert’. And it’s 73 pages long. A visitor, apparently, needs 73 pages just to understand what’s being said - I don’t even want to think about how many pages would be needed to understand what is actually going on.
Here’s a taster, from the ‘C’ section:
Cedefop, CEN,CENELEC,CEPOL,CIVITAS,COM Documents,CEC,COPA,COGECA,COREPER, CSR,COSAC
As such, I think it’s clear to all that the EU has somewhat of un problemo with language. But I don’t think that warrants Mardell’s question: “Does the EU shroud itself in obscure language on purpose?”.
Surely we can forgive an institution has been developing since the Second World War and has 23 - yes, 23 - “official languages” a confusing lingo?
Let’s look at Mardell’s answer to his own question shall we? Oh no. I forgot. We’ll have to wait for his radio show tomorrow…