No Louvre For Christmas
Only in Paris would the threat of a museum strike be such a big deal, but a big deal it has become. So far The Pompidou Center, second in popularity only to the famous Lourve, has shut its doors in protest of a government plan to reduce cultural spending championed by President Nicolas Sarkozy, wherein only one out of every two retiring civil servants in the museum biz would be replaced. The Pompidou has been closed since November 23rd and might just be the first domino in a larger scale Paris-wide, museum shuttering, just in time for the holiday and tourist season.
The proposed plan would be a blow to the staffing of all Parisian museums, but the Pompidou in particular is up in arms because almost half of its staff is over the age of 50. It would be most depleted museum under the new plan. More walkouts and shutdowns are expected if union demands are not met by tomorrow. Seven different unions are threatening to strike, affecting all major museums including the Louvre, Versailles, the Musée d’Orsay, Notre Dame, and Mont Saint-Michel. It is a testament to Parisian culture that the mere threat of shutting down the museums for the holiday season would be enough leverage to force a deal.