Remember how fresh doughnuts vanished from bakery shop counters, to be replaced by packages of doughy lumps, once fresh, squeezed under plastic wrap? Another regulation from the European Union, shopkeepers ruefully explained. Wrong. It was a myth.
Pavel Poc, MEP from the CSSD, who collects the urban legends in circulation about the mad rubber stamping of the European Union, is busy deconstructing them and tracing them back to the dubious truth that got the snowball rolling. His collection has some real gems–like the myth that the European Union is set to regulate the size of condoms. Looking deeper into how the myths arise, he noted that most got their start in the UK media.
“The standard method is that a British tabloid pulls out a few lines from new European directives or events in Brussels and slaps on one of its beautifully bombastic headlines, and that’s what journalists in other countries pick up on. Then, partly perhaps because of inaccurate translation in each country, the headline gets embellished a little, for example with comments by local politicians, who are all too pleased to dump it all at the door of the European Union. And with that,” Poc explains, “the myth is out there for good.”
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