|October 6, 2009|
|McDonald's Cuts France Down to Fries|
|By Kevin McCauley|
|It is so over for France. The one-time beacon of enlightenment and refined living has gone down for the final count. A report in London’s Daily Telegraph tells the tale of the tape. |
The Telegraph reports that McDonald’s is celebrating its 30th birthday in France by opening up an outpost in the Musee du Louvre, the heart and soul of French culture.
That’s correct. McDonald's is trading on up. As for France????
After viewing some of the 216-year-old Louvre’s collection of more than 35,000 works of art, a hungry visitor now has the golden [arch] opportunity to chow down a Big Mac and loads of pommes frites. That’s enough to give a whopper of a belly-ache to Francophiles everywhere. Can it get worse? Is Burger King far behind? Stay tuned.
The Telegraph quoted a highly exasperated art historian at the Louvre declaring that Mickey D’s move is the “last straw.” He gushed: “This is the pinnacle of exhausting consumerism, deficient gastronomy and very unpleasant odors in the context of a museum.” Get over it, Jean-Paul. Let `em eat hamburgers.
McDonald’s invasion of the Louvre makes perfect sense. Despite huffing and puffing about America’s low brow culture: France is McDonald’s No. 1 international market. Since the Louvre is France’s biggest tourism draw, it only makes sense for McDonalds to set up shop there. It’s a match made in marketing heaven.
France’s also took a blow in the current edition of The Economist. That British pub compared France to the U.S. Congress, which is not exactly on top of anybody’s good reputation list. Both are “prickly and status-obsessed and ruthless in defending national interests,” hissed the Economist.
It’s high time for an alliance of the prickly. The U.S. Congress did extend an olive branch to France. Three years ago, it returned french fries and french toast to their rightful place in the Senate cafeteria. “Freedom fries” and “freedom toast” --born in a fit of pique over France’s lack of cooperation in George Bush’s invasion of Iraq--were forever banished, one hopes.
France’s parliament should extend its own hand of friendship. Now that McDonald’s has conquered the pinnacle of high French culture, how about serving up Big Macs and fries in France’s National Assembly and Senate? After enjoying a Big Mac, Mona Lisa would crack a smile over that goodwill gesture.
Vive La France! Vive McDonald’s!
Return to Latest News