WordPress have begun a Weekly Writing Challenge, and last week’s was called “from Mundane to Meaningful”. The idea was to take “to take something you think isn’t worth sharing, do a little digging, and turn it into something your readers can connect to”.
I have chosen a piece about the Euro currency crisis, the greatest cure for insomnia since third-year trigonometry, from this morning’s Irish Times. In its present form it trips off the page as follows:
German chancellor Angela Merkel backed the European Central Bank’s insistence on conditions for helping reduce borrowing costs in indebted countries, saying Germany is “in line” with the ECB’s approach to defending the euro.
“Obviously time is pressing” on stamping out the debt crisis, though “on many of these issues we feel we’re on the right track,” Ms Merkel told reporters in Ottawa yesterday at a joint press conference with Canadian prime minister Stephen Harper. Euro-area policy makers “feel committed to do everything we can to maintain the common currency.”
Asked about ECB chief Mario Draghi’s announcement that the central bank may return to sovereign bond-buying, Ms Merkel said recent ECB decisions “have made it clear that the European Central Bank is counting on political action in the form of conditionality as the precondition for a positive development of the euro.”
Ms Merkel, facing European pressure to ease bailout terms and allow shared debt as well as calls by global partners to stop contagion, returned to the crisis fight after her summer vacation, using the trip to Canada to make her first public comments on the turmoil in a month.
She hailed Canada’s budget and debt discipline as a model for the 17-nation euro area.
I think it might read better like this:
Angela Merkel (if you don’t know she’s German chancellor by now, why are you reading this) backed the ECB’s insistence on conditions for digging struggling countries out of the shit, saying these were Germany’s idea in the first place.
Her next sentence started with “obviously”, so obviously there’s no need to repeat it. She told reporters in Ottawa (that’s in Canada) yesterday at a joint photo-op with the Canadian (see) prime minister (he doesn’t get capital letters, that’s what you get for giving us Brian Adams and Anne Murray) that Euro policy makers “feel committed to do the job that ordinary Europeans are paying them huge sums of money to do”.
Asked about ECB chief Mario Draghi’s announcement that the central bank may return to sovereign bond-buying, Angie said something that was presumably a lot more interesting in German.
The Siren of the Rhine, facing pressure to make borrowing easier, as well as apparently being asked to cure measles, returned to the crisis fight (and you think you hate your first day back) after her summer vacation, which she spent white-water rafting, reading Fifty Shades of Grey and busking on the streets of Hobart. She used to trip to Canada to make her first public comments in a month, during which time incidentally the Euro did not collapse, which should make her think.
She looked at Canada’s economy, the fact that they have ice-hockey, and how hot Mounties look, and wondered what the hell she was doing living in Europe.
I don’t know if journalist have ghostwriters. If any of them would like one they should give me a shout.