By Mark Frauenfelder at 12:39 pm Thu, Jan 8, 2009
If this is real, it's my favorite photo so far this year. (Via Neatorama)
Well… you have to remember that most Europeans (even those working directly for the EU) are not native speakers of the English language. And if you’re not a native speaker some connections may escape your grasp.
Not an excuse, I know, but an explanation.
And after all it is just some mindless slogan they like to pin everywhere… maybe “borders” would have been a more appropriate term. Or maybe not…
“Europe without barriers” is the theme of the Czech Republic’s sex-month stint as the EU President (the role rotates between member states every six months.) This just looks like neat marketing to me (am I totally misreading the tone of the post?)
The EU, explicitly since the mid-80s at least has had a – hmmm, got be careful with words here – consistent direction towards removing barriers between member states. Hence the slogan. For instance the Single European Market of 1994 was the point from which, in principle, any citizen of an EU member state must be able to buy goods and services from any other member state. So e.g. if I as a UK citizen want to use a Danish bank, in principle I should be able to do so. The Schengen Agreement represents the removal of border controls to movement between states. And recently the ability of citizens to migrate to, live and work in any other member state came into force; cue a whole lot of paranoid rantings in the UK gutter press about Polish plumbers. (Sadly such vileness is still very much in evidence today ; it’s going to be, uh, interesting to see what happens to “community relations”, here at any rate, as mass unemployment really takes off in the next few years. But I digress –)
Impak (2) said:
“the Czech Republic’s sex-month stint as the EU President”
Possibly my favourite typo…
I once read an ad agency job description for a champain manager. (in Europe)
It’s ironic that you missed the irony :p
I fail! Here’s Tom with the weather…
gives a few ideas though; “The Friendly Barbed Wire Company”, “Happy Feet Landmines Ltd.”….
… and this silly logo sums just a part of that bizarrness that czech politics really is (I have to know, IÂ´m a czech guy myself).
Makes me wish I had taken a picture of my favorite bench in Toledo, Ohio – it read “United We Stand”
or maybe they (their pr department) use that irony intentionally as a joke, dont you think?
bollocks, I’m Czech and I can say with 99% certainty that this irony didn’t even dawn on to anyone. They simply didn’t think about it. No barriers slogan on a barrier :-D it made me LMAO :-D
#1 posted by GNeuner: The English word “barrier” has same meanings as the Czech word “bariÃ©ra” (genitive case: bariÃ©r). There is no possibility that the producer of these barriers didn’t know what it means.
But as said before, probably nobody thought about it. They just followed the graphics manual…
Good photo! :-)
I wish this was irony, will be cool. But I am afraid that it is no irony, that is totally true, we “follow the graphic manuals” without thinking too often.
Another Czech here. Re #12: Actually, the meaning does not quite overlap: even if the photo is from Czechia, and even if the barriers were manufactured locally (but they would have to be ordered there anyway, right?), this type of barriers is better known as “zÃ¡brana” (plural: -y) in Czech. So it is not out of the realm of the possible that they wouldn’t thing of it.
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