Today's new Quebecois French term: broche à foin

Monday, March 28, 2011

Learned a new Canadian French term today, broche à foin. Means haphazard, mickey mouse, ad-hoc, improvised, piecemeal, that sort of thing. Stephen Harper used the term in a speech yesterday where he talked about the possibility of a coalition (thus far the only subject being talked about in the election):



And here's my crappy transliteration of what he said. Maybe Olivier or someone else will correct it for me.

M. Duceppe, tant de changer de faire de 2004. Même sa propre histoire en 2004 pour justifier une coalition. Une coalition avec M. Ignatieff. (?) choisi la porte rouge de M. Ignatieff. Imaginez des centre (something - atteurs, auteurs??) quand les liberaux federaux, qui tente de travailler avec le souveraniste Bloc. C'est un veritable coalition broche à foin.

Edit: Olivier sent me his attempt at a transcription, not an easy task due to Harper 1) being from Canada 2) not speaking French as a first language. Apparently it's more along the lines of this:

"Monsieur Duceppe tente de changer [l'affaire] de 2004. Même sa propre histoire en 2004 pour justifier une coalition, une coalition avec Monsieur Ignatieff. Il a choisi la porte rouge de Monsieur Ignatieff. Imaginez des centralisateurs comme les libéraux fédéraux, qui tentent de travailler avec les souverainistes du Bloc. C'est une véritable coalition "broche à foin"".


By the way, as for what 2004 here means: in 2004 when the Liberals under Paul Martin won a minority government Stephen Harper as the leader of the opposition looked into forming a coalition with the other parties but in 2008 after the last election the Liberals looked into forming a coalition with the other parties too. At the moment coalitions are still taboo in Canadian politics where the party that has won the most seats is traditionally the party that forms the government, even in a minority. Here's another video en français on that.

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