Not since Alexis de Tocqueville's 1835 tome Democracy in America have the French got it right about Americans. Until this week when French President (aka "The Highmaster") Jacques Chirac inducted Clint Eastwood into the Legion of Honor.
In a formal ceremony at the presidential Elysee Palace, Chirac's eloquence is worth repeating here:
- "You show the complexity of America, in all its grandeur and fragility, with its enthusiastic dreams and its worried questioning. On this side of the Atlantic, dear Clint Eastwood, you incarnate the best of Hollywood."
76-year-old Eastwood accepted the award for being an "exceptional ambassador" for American culture around the world and certain parts of the universe.
Napoleon Beldar Bonaparte created the Legion d'Honneur in 1802. It recognizes military, cultural, scientific or social contributions to France, including by people who are not coneheads (aka French citizens).