French Wine Industry Inconsequence and Assholeism

Ass "The neutralization of the 70 grapevines was an act of civil
disobedience, which is a legitimate expression when the powerful impose
on the population something it has largely disowned."

—Jean-Pierre Frick, French punk—

Note to Monsieur Frick: It's not "Civil Disobedience" if you know you won't get punished. It's Hooliganism.

Ben O'Donnell at the reports on another act of hooliganism by a group of French assholes that has resulted in the destruction of an experimental that is looking at ways genetic modification of vines can help stop the spread of Grapevine Fanleaf Virus, a disease that destroys vines and soils everywhere it appears. The French Assholes claim, without evidence, that experimenting with genetic modification to overcome the disease is harmful.

The last time the French Assholes carried out such an attack on legitimate research they were fined by the French government a whopping 1 Euro by sympathetic officials who must now realize that by condoning the destruction of research vines that cost the French people millions of Euros, they have encouraged this new attack on legitimate research.

O'Donnell at the Spectator is a good reporter. He delivers both sides of the issue by laying out the justifications that the French Assholes give for their hooliganism while laying out the justification for carrying out the research. I, on the other hand, am not a good reporter. This allows me to call it like it is: Assholeism!

The French wine industry has, over time, become less and less relevant. Part of this has to do with the various policies that the French have adopted vis a vis wine and alcohol whereby they have made it exceedingly difficult for hardworking, innovative entrepreneurs to compete on a global stage with the wines from countries where innovation is encouraged.

By encouraging assholes like M. Frick to destroy legitimate viticultural research, the French take one more step into a descending spiral of inconsequence.

15 Responses

  1. tom merle - September 15, 2010

    All countries suffer from a strain of authoritarian righteousness. We know about Germany. But France has its revolutionary history. I call this the “Robespierre Syndrome”. Maximilien François Marie Isidore de Robespierre “dominated the Committee of Public Safety and was instrumental in the period of the Revolution commonly known as the Reign of Terror, which ended with his arrest and execution in 1794…. His supporters called him ‘The Incorruptible’, while his adversaries called him the ‘Tyrant’ “.(Wikipedia) Monsieur Frick, with his “Voluntary Reapers” determined to make France “safe”, sounds a lot like a modern day Robespierre.

  2. Dan Fredman PR - September 15, 2010

    While the French wine industry may well have become less and less relevant, to a great extent French WINE remains the standard against which all other wines are judged against. The hooligans’ action was against the industry and apparently too place without any regard to its effect on the wine. One can only hope that similar research is ongoing in other institutions around the world.
    (BTW, this wins my vote for the “most arresting blog title of 2010”)

  3. luc ertoran - September 15, 2010

    Mr Tom,
    If Mr.Frick is an asshole…..what are you?
    French Mother Fucker Luc Ertoran @ Terroir San Francisco.
    Watch your mouth Mister.

  4. Tom Wark - September 15, 2010

    That makes me the Mother F*cker who thinks that purposely destroying public property is assholeism.

  5. luc ertoran - September 15, 2010

    I just posted ya’ stuff on wine disorder to show how nice you are and to pay some respect to the great writer you are.
    Much love to ALL french ladies out there.

  6. Morton - September 15, 2010

    It isn’t only the French. We have the same shit going here. In fact, I think this brand of GMO hooliganism might have been invented by some activists at UC Davis or Berkeley. I would think these Frenc GMO hooligans would find a receptive audience in Sonoma maybe even here in Napa amongst the bio-dynamicists. I know they are welcome in Mendocino where every there is every manner of genetic modification between C.sativa and C.indica, but not a single “GMO”.
    Usually, you find the compelling force behind stirring up fear about these things is economic. Imagine if you could grow grapes on sandy soils full of nematodes carrying fan leaf. Even more surplus wine to dump. Why not stir up fear about what someone else grows in order to sell your own product?
    These GMO luddites, no matter how dim, must have an inkling there is no difference between creating a hybrid the fast direct way or the slow, random way. It is still a genetic modification. Yes, there have been some questionable practices and some reasons for caution in this field, but little reason for this type of hysteria. GMO’s are everywhere, we are still standing and ag production is at record levels.
    It’s interesting that no one is breaking into Genentech or Lilly or Sanofi-Aventis destroying batches of life saving drugs which increasingly are made by human genes implanted in Pichia yeast, or E.coli or goats producing human proteins extracted from their cells or milk. Probably no economic issue there for farmers, particularly goat farmers. Twenty years from now everyone will wonder what the hulabaloo was about.
    Well, maybe not in Mendocino.

  7. SFJoe - September 15, 2010

    You may have had an inadvertent infelicity in your language. Everyone in this story is French, yet you associate “asshole” and “French” needlessly.
    Someone might find it offensive.

  8. Tom Wark - September 15, 2010

    Only to make the point quite strongly that while Frick and their ilk are simple hooligans, it’s the French government, presumably supported by the French people, that encourage this kind of nonsense.
    As everyone knows, my love of the French and France goes way back.

  9. John Kelly - September 15, 2010

    Luc’s objections notwithstanding, many of my French friends while in their cups would argue that “French asshole” is needlessly redundant. But I agree with Morton that calling out just the French over their fringe element dedicated to anti-GMO hysteria could be construed as myopically nationalistic. We certainly have enough home-grown activists. The fanleaf resistant rootstock could easily have been developed here, but for the concern over the potential furor. Wasn’t there some assholeism demonstrated by the Wine Institute when they declared that “we” as an industry would reject the use of GMO-derived products in our winemaking?

  10. Ned - September 15, 2010

    It would probably work better in seeking support for your point of view if you avoid
    making sweeping associations. You are bound to antagonize some folks needlessly when making a point “quite strongly” with sweeping indiscriminate terms. They may be singular nouns but they represent large diverse groups of people.
    The French wine industry is not monolithic, nor are the French people of one mind or
    all for or against this research.

  11. Tom Wark - September 15, 2010

    True enough. However, I think it is a fact that all those folks who tore up the vines are indeed all inflicted with Assholeism disease.

  12. Joe Dressner - September 16, 2010

    Tom Wark Tea Party!
    Nice of you to extend the party to defending French private property!

  13. John Roberts - September 16, 2010

    I’d been browsing Frick’s wines at Chambers. Now I think I’ll purchase…

  14. Steve Savage - September 16, 2010

    What makes this whole thing silly is to think about the biology. Grapes are not grown from seed! I spoke with a PhD Viticulturist at a Mendocino winery when they were voting on their GMO ban. I asked, “do you worry that a block of Zinfandel next to a block of Chardonnay will ‘genetically contaminate’ each other?” Of course the answer was “no” but she was still supportive of the ban.
    As for the French, maybe we can get them to rip out all their vines by reminding them that they are all planted on American rootstocks that are full of foreign genes which could “contaminate” their vineyards.

  15. Mike Tommasi - September 17, 2010

    reading the gratuitous comments about entire nations being assholes makes me think that the commenters must be of the same proctological mindset as the luddites that destroy research… 🙂
    Frick is a difficult case. He believes in biodynamics, he makes remarkable wines, therefore he thinks there is a causal relation between these two facts. He is also a vandal. One can only conclude that he is, like many people today, a dogmatic believer, whose dogma includes the notion that beliefs warrant respect, simply because some people have them. The USA and Afghanistan are also known for similar thinking. Blind belief in one’s dogma is usually benign, resulting in nothing more violent than bingo, but the potential to stray into stupidity is permanent.
    In the case of the INRA work, it concerned the rootstock, not the actual vinifera that gets grafted on (cabernet S, etc.).

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