EU referendum, brexit and the aftermath

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  • Interesting. I wasn't aware of that. Perhaps there are private models that can be made to work over the long term (although, likewise, I'm certainly not in favour).

  • This is an interesting historical perspective on Brexit (and the balances between interest groups)

    https://www.lrb.co.uk/blog/2019/may/the-­politics-of-old-europe

  • Yeah, most European countries have an exceedingly complicated health insurance system, with at least one type of health insurance provided by the state, and often overlapping systems organised by trade. Any introduction of this kind of system would be a massive nightmare, logistically, but there are lots of big insurance companies that would LURVE to slip into the UK's health sector.

  • The Dutch system offers a huge choice of insurers, some are not for profit companies, some specialize in certain areas (like end of life care), along with strong government cost control it looks nothing like the USA system.

    Health care is super complex, no doubt some experts have good reasons to replace the NHS with a similar system.

    But I don't think the NHS is that broken it needs replaced...and any replacement will cause new issues for sure.

  • I am Dutch, living in Berlin, Germany, now paying in excess of 3 times for comparable healthcare of what I would pay in the Netherlands, even taking in to account the "own risk" sum of 250 euros...

  • I suffered broken neck & 5 stab wounds by rapist. I was fully insured by 2 insurance companies.

    Claim denied & both sued me. Said I knew I was going to be attacked, so I was CONTRIBUTORY NEGLIGENT & UNDULY ENRICHED.

    Jesus

  • Yes, I saw that one. Shocking. It looks like she's written a book about her experience.

  • Speaking other languages opened a large swathe of the world for me

    I don't usually read the Telegraph, but this made me think of your comment. So many things in this story are very sad. (I don't know anything about secondary schools etc though so I don't know how or whether it all fits together. )
    https://www.telegraph.co.uk/education/20­19/05/05/children-find-foreign-languages­-stressful-signed-gp-headteachers/

  • Language teaching is shit over here though, I had a few hours a week at German, and didn't learn much, and for 2 years had Spanish for an hour a week as an extra language. We literally spent that time doing word searches of Spanish words, I can do a word search in any language but I won't learn a fucking thing. It's a shame because I now find the similarities and differences between all the bits of other languages I've been exposed to really interesting and I'm sure a more natural, conversational way of teaching, focusing on things that are in common would probably lead to more multilingual people. Instead foreign language are force fed like English and other subjects, removing any joy and fun and interest and not using too many ands in a sentence from learning.

  • Although my daughter has been taught French from a young age at school, along with sign language and snippets of other languages, and I try to sound intelligent with the odd word of something I've picked up until she tells me I'm wrong, so maybe things are improving. Or brexit and fuck it.

  • I try to sound intelligent with the odd word of something I've picked up until she tells me I'm wrong

    I used to do that to my parents but now I've forgotten everything

  • I had a few hours a week at German, and didn't learn much

    That's so sad too, what a waste of time. I'm pretty sure my language lessons (French and Spanish up to GCSE) didn't take up much time - less than 2h a week, and while they weren't my best subjects it was enough that I can still use both and I'm glad I was taught them.

  • Excuse my ignorance on the matter but how are languages taught abroad?
    I know that in my case we didn’t start any french or German lessons til we started secondary school. My 2yr old nephew can already sign a bit and will be learning Japanese from my brother and the primary school(state) they want to get him into teaches french from the offset.

  • English lessons starterd at the age of 9, German at the age of 15. 4 times a week. It was obligatory. Poland at the end of the millenium. No one ever complained.
    Now it's at schools discrection what foreign languages you can pick, but you must chose at least one.

  • I remember bits and can say hallo und auf wiedersehen but no chance of holding any kind of conversation. I think it was the learn by rote kind of methods that just sucked any joy out of it, much like the rest of school. I'm glad things seem better with my daughter but then you hear of the kind of shit they get forced to teach for English SATS and realise it's probably a good school in a bad system.

  • My secondary school timetabled English and French together which meant that if you were in top set English, you had to be in top set French, which meant I had basically 2 years of wasted lessons for that . Moved to Spanish for the final year of GCSE but sadly very little of it stuck.

    @edmundro I think they just start them very early, and get exposed to a lot more variety. Probably an outlier but I know a friend of my dads who we visited in Spain had a 10yo son who could speak Spanish to his dad, Norwegian to his mum, and perfectly good English to us because of school

  • Dutch system for university prep high school:
    -english from age 8ish to age 17 (3-4 years in primary school, 5-6 years in secondary)
    2/3 hours a week
    -french from 12 to 16 compulsory. (4years)
    2/3 hours a week
    -german from 13 to 14 compulsory (2years)
    2/3 hours a week
    -spanish, russian, chinese on some high schools
    And then of course Dutch.

    I took a more bêta subjects profile so was denied take advanced french due to timetable issues.

    Mind you, this was the minimum..

  • I guess the secret to Dutch people being well at foreign languages is drumroll educasjon

  • And I spoke conversational English by age 7 because of subtitles on television.

    All been worth it too:
    -Master was mostly in English, like many masters in the Netherlands now.
    -Lived in Berlin, Germany since 5,5years
    -Have been in relationships with french-speakers since 6,5 years (inlaws!)

    My dutch suffers though

  • To add to Rodolfo's note: Dutch education is also focussed on speaking.

    Yes, we get all the grammar too but there are quite a few exercises where you have to complete sentences, practise asking for direction etc... which makes it easier to remember.

    And subtitles do help too. BTW Arte is FREE and subtitled, if you want exposure to French/German (mostly) and they have lots of stuff.

    [it also gets EU money, extra point to piss off the local extreme Brexiter]

  • Thanks for that explanation.
    I had some Dutch customers back in the late '90s,
    they all spoke the English/French/German/Spanish combination.
    (I guess this was too early for Chinese and Russian?)

  • The deciding factor for which language you learnt at my school was how good you were at maths.

    Everyone did French for the first three years (at secondary school), top set at maths also did German, next two sets also did Italian, bottom two didn't do anything extra.

    For the final two years you chose one language.

    It was only a couple of hours a week though and there was plenty of emphasis on learning grammar (particularly in German).

  • My letter box just farted an arseful of explosive diarrhea onto my doormat.


    2 Attachments

    • IMG-20190507-WA0002~2.jpeg
    • Point Blur_May072019_103837.jpg
  • Is it friday?

  • Likewise. My landfill bin has just had identical items added to it.

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EU referendum, brexit and the aftermath

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