Margrethe Vestager Photo: VCG
Some measures and suggestions brought forward by European politicians to deal with the energy shortage situation due to the Western countries’ sanctions against Russia might have gone too far, which has, instead of helped solve problems, led to online mockery from around the world.
“Control your own and your teenager’s showers. And when you turn off that water, you say: ‘Take that, Putin!”‘ This was the suggestion given by Margrethe Vestager, the EU Commissioner for Competition and Executive Vice-President of the European Commission last Wednesday while she was at a Politico Live event.
Vestager may have been attempting comedy, but Twitter users, including many European netizes, did not think so. After a video clip of the show was posted on Twitter over the weekend, it sparked ridicule from many netizens.
“Just a powerful, well-paid EU bureaucrat thinking people are more idiotic than she is,” said Luigi Colline, an Italian Twitter user. He was replied to by Mauro Catellani, who remarked. “Today I took the longest hot shower of my life singing ‘Take that EU!”‘
Another twitter user Alessandro Gardini suggested, “If only we could turn bureaucrats’ stupidity into energy, Europe would be self-sufficient.”
Some netizens checked if it is still April Fool.
Chinese netizens were also entertained by Vestager’s speech. “That’s right, back to medieval times! No shower is the good old tradition of Europe,” said one. “Why don’t you suggest people avoid eating, in order to save food?” mocked another.
As the conflict between Russia and Ukraine continues, the US and its Western allies have escalated sanctions against Russia which have spread to many fields, leading to rising gasoline, energy and food prices in the US and Europe.
Russia accounts for over 40 percent of Europe’s total natural gas supply and 50 percent of the coal supply used in Europe. The European natural gas price reportedly jumped 34 percent after ruble payment requirements for gas took effect on Friday.
In order to get rid of energy dependence on Russia, some European politicians have opened their creative minds to “claim a war against Putin.”
Russia Today reported that Germany’s Baden-Württemberg Minister of Agriculture and Consumer Protection Peter Hauk suggested people wear sweaters to deal with cold weather. “No one will die from 15 degrees in an apartment,” he stated.
Moreover, worrying that the natural gas supply will be cut off, some people in Germany are rushing to buy and stock up firewood. Timber traders said that due to limited supply, it is currently difficult to meet public demand, CCTV reported on Sunday.
“Well they would live like cavemen. Next they will start to drill wood to make fire,” a Chinese netizen commented.