Food for Dialogue

We’re extending April Fool’s Day for an extra day, thanks to a translation from our Danish correspondent TB. TB includes this introduction:

Lots of stupid jokes surface on April 1 every year. All the papers have one. The TV stations as well, and so on. You know the drill.

But this year the Danish People’s Party pulled one off as well. I think it is hilarious, and it has some transatlantic relevance. So I decided to translate it for your personal entertainment.

Here’s the important April 1st announcement from the DPP:

Press Release From the Danish People’s Party

Barack Obama invites Kristian Thulesen Dahl to come to Washington.

BaconThe love of food has become a political issue in the Obama administration.. That is why forty food-loving top politicians have been invited to Washington to illustrate how good food can facilitate even very problematic political negotiations. Kristian Thulesen Dahl from the DPP is among an international corps of politicians who have received an invitation.

Last time — in Europe — we noticed the food political strategy in connection with the COP15 arrangement in Copenhagen where a dinner invitation from Queen Margrethe and Prince Henrik was employed to promote the climate of political negotiation.

Now Obama will seek to promote dialogue between nations by serving good food.

Roast porkIt was brought to the attention of the Americans by articles describing the circumstances related to last year’s finance negotiations. Here they could read how roasted pork was served to create a better climate in the negotiations. It worked. Kristian Thulesen Dahl, the chairman of the DPP and spokesman for the finance negotiations, was presented in the articles as a man who simply loves roasted pork. And he does not deny that this Danish national food specialty with crispy rind, potatoes, red cabbage and gravy can create a negotiating climate in which he feels at home.

Kristian Thulesen Dahl looks forward to participating in the very special event in Washington but is also a little skeptical.

“Of course it feels great to be invited to Washington — and I would never turn an invitation like this down. On the other hand, I must say that I am a little skeptical about the event. I am simply afraid that some of the invited guests will not want to eat roasted pork at all, and how will that affect President Obama? I mean, his visions are exciting and deserve support, but the question is whether for example the Muslim representatives desire that dialogue — also when served roasted pork and local-style preserved red cabbage!”

– – – – – – – –

“But of course the attempt has to be made, so I will get on the plane on Wednesday with the hope that the president will succeed!”

Kristian Thulesen Dahl has been appointed as one among only forty politicians to participate in the food event with President Obama. The event will take place from Thursday to Saturday next week in Washington.

The name of the food-loving Danish politician was served to the managers among Obama’s staff, including the president’s special adviser of issues related to strategic negotiation techniques, Phill Wallens, who in a letter to Kristian Thulesen Dahl among other things wrote that:

“It has been crucial to the president to find methods to enhance dialogue among countries. President Obama has taken several steps in this relation and this food event is one of these initiatives. We have invited forty politicians to participate — from twenty-eight countries. All of them represent something special — something unique. We invite food-loving politicians representing all religions and geographical areas and in this way we make dialogue work.”

12 thoughts on “Food for Dialogue

  1. Afonso Henriques: if you dont start protesting seriously about things that ARE happening – muslims in Spain trying to turn a church into an islamic worship centre(islam in Europe blog), you wont be ABLE to even think about Holy Friday, let alone have a church to go to! Get real!

  2. In the spirit of dialogue and mutual understanding, it would be appropriate to offer any Muslim participants in such meeting the special service of halal-butchered pork, despite my dislike for this barbarous method.

    Accepting such a compromise would constitute a genuine sign of understanding and willingness to compromise, also from the Muslim side.

  3. And he does not deny that this Danish national food specialty with crispy rind, potatoes, red cabbage and gravy can create a negotiating climate in which he feels at home.

    Known in Danish as flaeskesteg, this is a double loin of pork with the skin on and roasted until the exterior is crispy. So popular is this national dish that it even has its own website.

    The red cabbage is known as rødkål and combines vinegar, red currant jelly and sugar for a sweet & sour flavor set.

    Steen: Finally some good news !

    I’ll say! Made almost entirely from pork products, it’s the Meat Ship! Brought to you by people who clearly have dangerous amounts of spare time on their hands.

  4. Ugh, it feels so good being an atheist and eating steaks. I used to fast each Wednesday and Friday, besides the normal pre-Christian holidays fasts and I’m quite fond of eating meat so it was really crappy for me, which leads me to understanding Afonso’s pain. Protestants have it easy – no ascetism stuff.

  5. But RV, this is the only day of the year in which I don’t eat meat out of costume. The only day of the year! What are the odds?
    I believe Baron did it on purpose to upset me.

    But still it ain’t very strict, we simply don’t cook meat but don’t care much for it also. For instance, I was preparing a sandwitch some hours ago and I really got upset we didn’t have ham today by chance. I suspect my brother is to blame.

    Still, I just hope the lamb of Sunday will be worth going meatless today.

  6. RV and Afonso,

    I’m an atheist, not because i like but because i can’t for some reason believe in god. But out of respect to what christianity brought to european civilization and for respecting my ancestors i fast on christmass eve, on good friday and ash wednesday.

    I love meat but a little bit of suffering does enobles the spirit.

  7. I’m a polytheist and I eat a lot of eggs.

    Steen & Dymphna, thanks for the link, but I prefer this one: Bacon Explosion.
    Hoc est corpus meum.


    Protestants have it easy – no ascetism stuff.

    You must be kidding. Protestantism means mental asceticism every minute of our life.

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