The Attack of the Killer Carré Rouge (C’est bien meilleur le matin, Radio Canada)
Jean-René Dufort with René Homier-Roy
June 15, 2012
Original French Video: http://www.radio-canada.ca/emissions/cest_bien_meilleur_le_matin/2011-2012/chronique.asp?idChronique=227748
René Homier-Roy: …about all that’s going on.
Jean-René Dufort is going to save the day.
JRD: Yeah, well, while watching the current debate degenerate here in Quebec, I asked myself if the social crisis were not just an aqueduct problem.
JRD: Yeah someone put something hallucinogenic in the water…
RHR: That could be, that could be…
JRD: … and now everyone is collectively hallucinating. And the premier, Jean Charest, seems to be drinking lots and lots of water.
RHR: Oh yes, oh yes. He’s floundering.
JRD: Because our premier is in the middle of a fear campaign. He’s cultivating it. He couldn’t be cultivating it more. In his view, and this is what’s interesting, everything appears radical. He’s like an extreme-centre politician, an old man who thinks the music is always too loud. Everything is radical. The PQ are extremists, the CAQ is a waiting room for sovereignty, Gabriel Nadeau-Dubois is a 130-pound Taliban, the casseroles are a threat to the government, the red square is a diabolical symbol of intimidation and violence.
RHR: That wasn’t the minister of Culture who said that? Mr Charest also said that?
JRD: Everyone at the Liberal government. If we add up, if a premier considers that half of the population he’s leading is composed of violent extremists, if you add up the péquistes, those who wear the red squares, those who play the casseroles, well, it may be clear that it’s time for you to go take a rest, when you’re afraid of half of the population like that.
JRD: I’m asking the question.
RHR: Yes, yes. That’s it.
JRD: Well, precisely, violence and intimidation. Christine St-Pierre said it loud and clear at the National Assembly. And she made a backhand apology while adding a little layer. Let’s listen:
Christine St-Pierre: Mister President, for many people who wear the red square, these people do not wish to send out a message of violence and intimidation. But Mister President, many quebeckers have been the witness to completely unsightly scenes of people who were wearing the red square.
RHR: Ok, that’s kinda like yes but no.
JRD: Yeah, well I’ve been checking and over the past month, there have been many more crimes that have been perpetrated by people who were not wearing the red square. There was even a member of the “NON au carré rouge” [no to the red square] who committed a crime that spread across the world lately. It’s even been studied in class. So statistically speaking, not wearing a red square is a higher bet of protection, um I mean of violence and intimidation than wearing one.
RHR: Well, yes.
JRD: If statistically speaking…
RHR: It’s defensible.
JRD: I think we would be right. Have you counted the number of times Jean Charest has said the words violence and intimidation over the past month?
RHR: I’ve tried, but I lost count. I can’t reach that high in numbers.
JRD: It is absolutely ridiculous. Again yesterday, he repeated it in his paternalistic tone we love so. Let’s listen:
Jean Charest: For several months now, we’ve been living a worrying and sad phenomenon. It’s the phenomenon of the trivialization of violence and of intimidation.
JRD: You have to say it slowly. Vi-o-lence. In-ti-mi-da-tion. According to Jean-Marc Fournier, you can even receive an envelope of intimidation. Let’s listen:
Jean-Marc-Fournier: How is it that amongst the Parti Québécois, there are none who are standing up for those who see their freedom of expression attacked, for those who have received, once again the professor from the Université de Sherbrooke, an envelope of intimidation?
JRD: So intimidation can be mailed now.
RHR: We didn’t know that! There’s a lot to learn at the National Assembly.
JRD: And not only is it mailable, but violence can be sung too. You can sing violence. Listen to Mr Charest:
Charest: If this is drawing quebeckers together around a project to sing violence against a government minister, I have to say that’s not the Quebec that I see, that’s not quebeckers, that’s not it at all. The minority that is imposing this discourse under the pretext that they have freedom of expression. Freedom of expression is not [for] saying just anything.
JRD: Well, precisely, speaking of saying just about anything. Jean let leak his next election slogan which is The economy against a referendum and the street. Just as well to say it clearly, if you vote for someone other than Jean, it’ll rain frogs.
RHR: That’s clear.
JRD: And he evidently and deliberately was inspired by that famous phrase from George W Bush: Either you are with us or you are with the terrorists. Well, it’s inspirational. So Jean Charest uses almost explicitly this expression while crowing like a pheasant. Let’s listen to him again:
Charest: If the leader of the official opposition is sincere, why is she incapable of saying that the students who wish to have access to their classrooms should have access without intimidation and without violence. Her real test today is that. And if she believes that, she should stand up and say so, or else she positions herself alongside those who proffer violence and intimidation.
JRD: You’re with us or with the terrorists!
RHR: That’s it. It’s clear.
JRD: He even added this week: Madame Marois is the street. That’s really, well, she’s quite terrifying, Madame Marois.
RHR: Of course not…
JRD: Listen to how Madame Marois is an ambulating monster according to Mr Charest.
Charest: She wears the red square. But it’s not only the red square. She has committed an act that is without precedent in Quebec’s political history. She’s banging on casseroles, Mister President.
JRD: She’s hitting casseroles!
RHR: I hope she’ll be burned.
JRD: She should be burned immediately! She’s banging on casseroles! So he’s so obsessed with Pauline and the red square that when she asks him a question on the mines and the Plan Nord, well this is what he answers:
Charest: I would like to note again, Mister President, that the head of the official opposition and the members of the Parti Québécois caucus are wearing their red squares today, and that their economic plan is the red square.
JRD: So their economic plan is the red square.
RHR: Well I think that the machine has somehow stalled…
JRD: I think we have to seriously commit him. Really, in his head there’s Attack of the Killer Carré Rouge. Well for me, if this is a vote-winning strategy, it’s so insulting to our intelligence, that I’d rather think that it’s merely a schizophrenic episode.
RHR: Because that’s treatable.
JRD: At least that’s treatable.
RHR: There’s that. Thanks Jean-René for your extremely scientific diagnostic.
Translated from the original French by Translating the printemps érable.
*Translating the printemps érable is a volunteer collective attempting to balance the English media’s extremely poor coverage of the student conflict in Québec by translating media that has been published in French into English. These are amateur translations; we have done our best to translate these pieces fairly and coherently, but the final texts may still leave something to be desired. If you find any important errors in any of these texts, we would be very grateful if you would share them with us at firstname.lastname@example.org. Please read and distribute these texts in the spirit in which they were intended; that of solidarity and the sharing of information.