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Ian O'Doherty: Finally, a good French idea

They are truly the oddest nation in Europe. Let's be honest, none of us can really figure out the French.

But every now and then, they come out with some idea that is so utterly bonkers you have to wonder if they are all actually a bunch of secret jokers.

A new law just brought in makes it actually illegal to be rude to your missus.

The law, which will also apply to couples who live together, promises criminal records for anyone who is found guilty of, as they say, "insulting their loved ones during domestic arguments".

And they're not messing about -- according to the French Prime Minister, Francois Fillon: "It's an important step forward as the creation of this offence will allow us to deal the most insidious situations -- situations that leave no visible scars, but which leave victims torn up inside."

So, now it's against the law to be rude, mean, cynical, pass remarks and generally be horrible to your partner?

Let's hope they introduce this law in Ireland -- then Mrs Ispy will be looking at an extremely long prison sentence.


The letters pages of this very paper have been particularly energised in recent days over the vexed issue of Gaza.

Those mean, nasty Israelis don't take kindly to being shelled by terrorists and have installed a blockade on the terrorist controlled area, much to chagrin of pro-Palestinians everywhere.

Should we go along with all those brave Indo letter writers who are so shrilly demanding a boycott?

Should we impose sanctions on the country that is collapsing tunnels when it's not pumping them full of gas, which is now confiscating the passports of international 'human rights' campaigners who are trying to get into the area and which is ultimately guilty of instituting a complete lockdown on the area?

Well, if the answer is yes, here's the interesting bit -- the country responsible for the above actions is Egypt.

So, will the many Irish friends of the Palestinians call for an urgent boycott and immediate implementation of sanctions against Egypt?

Don't hold your breath.


Okay people -- as a widely adored and loved, nay, revered, column -- it is incumbent upon us to bring some common sense into your stupid skulls.

And so, as the current cold snap continues, allow ISpy to give you some tips. Firstly -- these are not, repeat, not arctic conditions. It will be arctic conditions when it's 35 freakin' degrees below zero and the country is in the grip of a white-out.

Secondly, there is a way of surviving the unholy scourge of frost -- just walk a bit more slowly and drive a bit more carefully.

Honestly, what is it with us that when it gets a bit chilly we all have a collective breakdown and think we're living in the North Pole?

We're taking bets on the first person to be found dead in their car -- not from freezing conditions but from starvation because they were too terrified to get out of the car in case they slipped and instead withered away from hunger.

While parked in their own driveway.

Irish Independent