American Elephants

The Berlin Reunion, 20 Years After the Fall of the Berlin Wall. by The Elephant's Child

Earlier this week, 1.5 million people filled the streets of Berlin, Germany to watch a several-day long performance by France’s Royal de Luxe street theatre company titled “The Berlin Reunion.”  Part of the celebrations of the 20th anniversary of the Fall of the Berlin Wall , the Reunion show featured two massive marionettes, the Big Giant, a deep-sea diver, and his niece the Little Giantess.

According to the storyline of the performance, the two were separated by a wall thrown up by “land and sea monsters.”  The Big Giant has just returned from a long and difficult — but successful —expedition to destroy the wall.  Now, they are walking the streets of Berlin, seeking each other after many years apart.

The video gives some idea of the motion of the performance.  This link provides a number of photos that tell the rest of the story.  An amazing performance.  Thanks to the Boston Globe for publishing this story.

NOTE: Do not miss clicking on the above link to the photos!  They are large, much more impressive than the short video, and tell much more of the story.

The king of France went up the hill, with forty thousand men; The King of France came down the hill And ne’er went up again. by The Elephant's Child
April 30, 2009, 6:52 pm
Filed under: Economy, Freedom, Socialism | Tags: , ,

Economist Veronique de Rugy warns President Obama that while France is admirable in many ways, economics is not one of the ways.

French President Sours on Obama by American Elephant

Under President Bush and French President Nicolas Sarkozy, Franco-American relations had dramatically improved. Sarkozy won election on a decidedly pro-American, pro-capitalism platform. He and Bush got along famously.

That was then; this is now.

Now he refers to Obama as weak and meek, and, “is annoyed by what he sees as the naivety and the herd mentality of the media.”

So much for “restoring America’s standing” in the world.

They all hate us, right? by The Elephant's Child

D-Day Reenactment

How many times have you heard that everyone in the world hates America (and it’s all Bush’s fault)?  Well, Africans love George Bush. They welcomed him like a rock star. Canada now has a conservative government, as does France, as does Italy, as does Germany. And the Brits are not too fond of Gordon Brown at the present. They love us in Eastern Europe. The Aussies now have a more liberal government, but they still like us. The Iranians like us –it’s only the government of the mullahs that doesn’t. We’re fine with Taiwan, Korea and Japan. India’s a friend. And then there is this odd little story from American Thinker. “The D-Day story the MSM didn’t tell again”

By the thousands, they come. Like ghosts. Dressed in full, authentic World War II battle gear. Standing in small groups on the street corners of St. Mere Eglise, Carentan and the other towns and villages near the coast where the British, Canadians and Americans came ashore in ’44.

They carry M-1s, BARs, Thompsons and holstered .45s. All perfect replicas. Their uniforms display the patches of the 101st and 82nd Airborne Divisions. The 29th and 4th Infantry Divisions. Canteens and ammo pouches and med-pacs on their web gear. They wear their hair short. Some have their faces blackened. Several even have Mohawks.

They drive along the coast in long caravans of military vehicles. Willys jeeps by the hundreds, scores of 2½ ton trucks, armored cars, potable water trucks, mobile AA batteries, even a couple of grinding Sherman tanks. They bivouac in olive drab green tent cities. Big and small. Field kitchens smoking. They invade the Normandy area, everywhere.

This is a terrific story that I never heard before.  Do read the whole thing.

A French boy watches a parachute drop by 450 men from the first battalion parachute regiment during a Normandy reenactment. His t-shirt reads,

So you say you want to raise taxes? by The Elephant's Child
August 15, 2007, 4:50 am
Filed under: Domestic Policy, Economy, News, Politics | Tags: , , , ,

The late Walter Wriston, former CEO of Citibank remarked in The Twilight of Sovereignty,

“Capital will go where it is wanted and stay where it is well treated. It will flee from manipulation or onerous regulation of its value or use and no government can restrain it for long.”

A message that should perhaps be engraved on small plaques and distributed to the members of Congress. Or perhaps pages could be bribed to scribe it on congressional desks.

Nicolas SarkozyWhen France’s Nicolas Sarkozy was campaigning for president last spring, he went to London where over 300,000 French ex-patriots are working. This makes London one of France’s largest cities.

In France, the top income-tax rate has been 48.1 percent—one of the highest in Europe. On top of that, France has had a “fortune” tax of 0.5 percent on assets greater than 760,000 Euros that rises as the assets increase. Despite political expectations, the tax has been unsuccessful at raising revenues. Apparently the successful decided to be successful in London instead.

Unfortunately, it is often the most creative and entrepreneurial who, while not yet rich, are hoping to get there and go where they can accomplish it.

Democrats who are anxious to raise taxes—especially on “the rich”—need to explain just where they think the money to finance new businesses comes from.

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