Kafka in Brussels

I just had a truly weird experience.  I was invited to the Video centre in the parliament to make a short recorded statement for a new video installation in the parliament’s visitor centre.  Each MEP is being invited to record a piece.

But when I got to Floor Minus One in the new JAN Building (hopeless confusion between JAN 1 Q100 and JAN -1 Q100), it was like the Marie Celeste, or a Kafka novel.  Long deserted corridors, locked doors on either side, and not a single soul in evidence. To all appearances, vast sums of tax-payers’ money spent to little purpose.

Eventually, I found three guys walking down a corridor, and it turned out they had come to meet me, so we finally found the studio, and I was recorded against a plain green background (to allow them to put in the EU flag afterwards, I guess!).  After eleven years in politics, I wasn’t expecting new experiences, but for the first time I was able to use a tele-prompt.  I had prepared a few words for my 45-second statement, and one of the guys typed it into their system — I don’t know what he made of it.  If I’d been advised in advance, I could have e-mailed it and saved him the trouble.

They should let me have the clip by the weekend, and I’ll put it up on the blog.  Meantime, here’s the text:

I’m Roger Helmer, and I’m a British Conservative MEP representing the East Midlands Region.

I decided to stand for the European parliament in 1999 because I was profoundly unhappy at the way the EU was going.

I support trade and cooperation in Europe, but I am opposed to the creation of supra-national political structures which are undemocratic, unresponsive and unaccountable, and which treat the views of citizens with contempt.  In repeated referendums, the EU has ignored the verdict of the people.

I believe that the EU is making us poorer, and less democratic, and less free.  We need a looser and more flexible Europe based on trade and cooperation.

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2 Responses to Kafka in Brussels

  1. Cliff Williams says:

    The guy typed all that in properly? He even knew how to spell the big words? Impressive.

    I will be interested to see if they produce it without changing it.

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