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Parmelins English in the US press: Some advertising effectiveness

a Swiss Federal Council is including the topic in the "New York Times", has rarity value. For the new SVP-Minister of economy, Guy Parmelin, the headline is,

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Parmelins English in the US press: Some advertising effectiveness

a Swiss Federal Council is including the topic in the "New York Times", has rarity value. For the new SVP-Minister of economy, Guy Parmelin, the headline is, however, little flattering. "I can English understand" were the headlines in the US Newspapers with reference to Parmelins well-known saying to his language skills. "... but je préfère repondre en français," he had said prior to his election in 2015 in a radio interview. Since then, the SVP-magistrate this sentence is like a pesky Fly.

The Swiss doubted the English skills of your new Minister of economy, writes the NYT now, in their broad-based article. And the current discussion in the country, the Parmelin has fired in person last week. As The Daily asked him in an Interview, his English skills, he refused with the words: "I am not going to talk about English with you – except, I say to you Goodbye. Thank you! See you later!"

That made Parmelin a mockery of in the comment columns, because in his new Department, he is in addition to the economy is also for the education and research policies, international networking, and alignment is well advanced.

The English of the magistrates

However, the SVP Federal Council is far from the only Federal Council, the voice with a lack of knowledge is striking. Unforgettable Johann Schneider-Ammann's French speech to the day of the sick. With his tired rhetoric of the outgoing FDP Economics Minister in 2016, was also the world's for laughs. Or Ueli Maurer of The SVP Federal councillor was in 2013 at the opening of the WEF in Davos or in 2015 at the Fifa Congress in Zurich idiosyncratic articulated English Speeches, the derisive comments.

"of Course, today it is desirable that a member of the Swiss government speaks English – especially in the Department of Economic Affairs," says Max, a Swiss who has worked for over 30 years as a Diplomat in the Department of foreign Affairs (FDFA).

The language deficits of many of the Swiss magistrates, however, would be not a compelling disadvantage. Firstly, could leave the Federal councilors, at any time, interpreters will accompany. On the other, these deficiencies are an expression of the popular militia system of Switzerland. "In contrast to top officials, there are for members of a defined requirement profile", said the Swiss. That the Federal Council Parmelin was already before taking office in the Department of Economic Affairs in the "New York Times", may even "a certain advertising effect" for the Alpine Republic of Switzerland, believes the Ex-Diplomat.

articulate by Federal councillors

it is noticeable, however, that women Express the languages in the Federal Council's office in less trouble with debt. While candidate Hans Wicki was able to articulate in the current election campaign, the FDP is no French sentence ("Je pense que le français, ce n'est pas l'unique trait to have a Federal Council"), was trained as a conference interpreter Karin Keller-to give a lecture on Sutter's complex political Dossiers fluent in the second language of the country. And at the CVP of the two languages She Viola Amherd to stand first, of Zuger, Peter Hegglin, who said the electoral podium to an English audience question: "On English c'est difficult."

Already the first Federal councillor of Switzerland, Elisabeth Kopp (FDP), impressed with your English. The triggered in the case of their male colleagues, however, also a suspicion, as she told in a recent Interview with the "NZZ on Sunday". So about Otto Stich (SP) I brought to a working lunch with the Philippine President Corazon Aquino, an interpreter, and while she didn't need. Why you didn't say that you speak English so well, he asked you after that, angry. Since you have answered: "I thought that a Federal Council should be able to."

Cassis, and Berset make

Simonetta Sommaruga (SP) or the assignor Doris Leuthard (CVP) to switch on press conferences fluently between the three major languages of the country. Eveline Widmer-Schlumpf (BDP), and Micheline Calmy-Rey (SP), in turn, had at its commencement deficits in the English, learned the language in the office quickly. "In Lunches or informal Meetings, it is essential to communicate in English. Otherwise, you cons," said Calmy-Rey to this recently in the Italian newspaper "24 Heures". And Widmer-Schlumpf, who spoke in 2011 at the St. Gallen Symposium with a heavy accent, led, three years later, in the course of the tax dispute even difficult financial and political confrontations with the American justice Minister Eric Holder in English.

"No coincidence", says Ex-Diplomat Swiss. "This Generation of policy must be clearly qualified as their male competitors, in order to have any Chance at all for the Federal Council office."

In the new composition is expected to reach the Federal Council, a total of a high language level: FDP foreign Minister, Ignazio Cassis speaks besides his mother language Italian, but also German, French and English fluently, and Alain Berset (SP) white to French, to communicate in German and English. Only two Federal councillors who will have a closer monitoring of interpreters remain with Parmelin and Mason. (

Created: 20.12.2018, 16:45 PM

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