You have to hand it to the French for relativism though, because according to the TV news reports, that is apparently how many cars get torched on an average New Year's Eve.
What?!? Some people just crack open the champagne, others set fire to cars to show their joy and festive mood in France? That, at least, is what the TV presenters would have you believe.
Where else in the world do you have violent demonstrations when a new Prez is elected?
Ok, well lots of countries I suppose, but it's been a long time since I've seen so many people unhappy with an election result - and this is probably only just a foretaste. The cops were on standby last night, and I heard sirens well into the night. They knew that this was going to happen and they were prepared for it.
I am wondering what the cops are preparing for the rest of the year; Sarkozy has promised a lengthy Parliamentary session this summer to push through a bunch of bills in support of his right-wing agenda. Canny timing it will be, because protest movements tend to die down in the summer months as France goes on holiday en masse.
If Darkozy can win a majority in the Parliamentary Elections in June, he will have a clear run through to mid-september to push through as much legislation as he can before the country wakes up to the fact that they have been sold out and shipped up shit creek without a paddle.
That's the big IF at the moment - and even though a parliamnetary majority would make things easier for Darth Vader, a Socialist Parliament may not even be up to the task of preventing the Dark Overlord's nefarious plans.
What we can be sure of though, the next 5 years will see alot more things getting burnt out than just cars.