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  #241  
Old 02.01.2011, 12:19
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Re: Compulsory language test for intending immigrants is on the cards, says Blocher

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This is going to be marvelous for all those in the French speaking former colonies- it will inject much needed fresh blood, flushing the Swiss system.
Think of all the wonderful mixtures of nationalities that will be encouraged to apply' for example Moroccan, Caribbean, Algerian etc.

I am also sure that for many in South America it will be easy to get to grips with basic Italian, so perhaps Switzerland can expect Mexican, Colombians etc. applying. I have heard that German is easy to learn for those who speak Afrikaans.

It's a Blocher brainwave! Language is a great leveler- does the test also apply to refugees?

I mean- look, listening to the clip below, I really don't see a problem do you?
You are outdated. Arabs, mainly from Morocco, Algeria, Tunisia, Egypt and Lebanon, but in the past few years also from Iraq, immigrated into Switzerland in considerable numbers already in the 1950ies/60ies/70ies. And people from Latin America (Dominican Republic, Brasil, Argentina and Chile) did do so in the same period. And let's not forget the countless Iranians, most of whom left the IRI in the 80ies
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  #242  
Old 02.01.2011, 12:32
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Re: Compulsory language test for intending immigrants is on the cards, says Blocher

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If the exam is WRITTEN, could newcomers just focus their efforts on becoming literate in high German, even if they don't learn much of the spoken language, just to pass the test?
Newcomers SHOULD focus their efforts onto the standard-language (Hochdeutsch), and then gradually try to understand the local dialect, and only gradually try to learn to express themselves in the dialect.

I know a man of Berlin origin, who after more than 6 decades still speaks a mix of Berlinerisch and Züritüütsch, BUT he understands practically all CH dialects perfectly well, and ages ago became a CH-citizen.
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  #243  
Old 02.01.2011, 18:55
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Re: Compulsory language test for intending immigrants is on the cards, says Blocher

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You are outdated. Arabs, mainly from Morocco, Algeria, Tunisia, Egypt and Lebanon, but in the past few years also from Iraq, immigrated into Switzerland in considerable numbers already in the 1950ies/60ies/70ies. And people from Latin America (Dominican Republic, Brasil, Argentina and Chile) did do so in the same period. And let's not forget the countless Iranians, most of whom left the IRI in the 80ies
What does considerable numbers mean compared to say England or France during the same time period?

But, that aside, I doubt that these people would have had much of a problem passing an Italian or French test. I am still not convinced that passing a language test is going cure all that Blocher proposes it will cure:
We will have fewer school problems, fewer criminals, fewer undocumented, fewer integration problems and the social system would be less stressed.

«Wir hätten weniger Schulprobleme, weniger Kriminelle, weniger Papierlose, weniger Integrationsprobleme und das Sozialsystem würde weniger belastet.»
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  #244  
Old 02.01.2011, 20:54
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Re: Compulsory language test for intending immigrants is on the cards, says Blocher

Look, seriously, even before something like this gets out of the gate at the SVP/UDC they'll have added some language to include English in the list of acceptable languages, just to placate the business community. We are clearly not the target for this xenophobic crap.

Of course I should be careful how I use the word "we". I'm American, but my surname is of vaguely Polish construction. I had the lovely experience of being denied an apartment in a landmark building on the basis of being "foreign". My lawyer was pretty sure it was down to the surname, and that if we really wanted the place we should try my wife's Italian surname.

Anyhow, we wound up with a better, cheaper place right across the street, so I guess it doesn't matter.
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  #245  
Old 02.01.2011, 21:44
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Re: Compulsory language test for intending immigrants is on the cards, says Blocher

I have been trying to read through this:

http://books.google.com/books?id=2fx...ntegration&lr=

It is a study of integration in Holland. It seems as if language itself is not the ulitmate barrier to integration. Many of the immgrants were from former Dutch colonies and so spoke and were educated in Dutch. The barriers to integration were education level, lack of employment, but perhaps most telling of all the attitude of the Dutch towards foreigners.

I think that it is very important that the same the of study be carried out in Switzerland, perhaps it exists but I haven't found it. If not, the Swiss government really needs to fund such a critical study and make it available to the public, so that the public are adequately informed before voting on integration policy.

The only comparable info I can find is here:








http://www.migrationinformation.org/...lay.cfm?ID=731
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  #246  
Old 02.01.2011, 23:14
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Re: Compulsory language test for intending immigrants is on the cards, says Blocher

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What does considerable numbers mean compared to say England or France during the same time period?

But, that aside, I doubt that these people would have had much of a problem passing an Italian or French test. I am still not convinced that passing a language test is going cure all that Blocher proposes it will cure:
We will have fewer school problems, fewer criminals, fewer undocumented, fewer integration problems and the social system would be less stressed.

«Wir hätten weniger Schulprobleme, weniger Kriminelle, weniger Papierlose, weniger Integrationsprobleme und das Sozialsystem würde weniger belastet.»
"Considerable numbers" means that the numbers if taken per capita of the "native" people are far higher than in England, and on the same level as in France. Just look at the Canton of Zurich which has a total population of 1,2 mio, and a Lebanese population of more than 40'000, a Maghrebine population of a similar size, an Egyptian population of more than 15'000 and some 10'000 Palestinians. The presence of "Maghrebines" in Geneva percentage-wise is far higher than in Zurich, which is the reason why Geneva for jokers has become the "Arab Socialist Republic of Geneva"

You at the other hand have to realize that the population of Switzerland can be compared with the populations of Greater London or Greater Paris.

Calculation-wise, as the Canton of Zurich has some 1,2 mio, you comparison-wise could say that France had to have a Lebanese population of 2,4 mio ! At the other hand of course, France has an Arab population (INCLuding French citizens) of more than 15 mio. .

-

True, such language tests would not cure any of the problems he mentioned. But to solve problems has never been the aim of Mr Blocher, but A) to get attention and B) to cause problems !


************************************************** ************************************

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The only comparable info I can find is here:

[IMG]file:///C:/Temp/moz-screenshot-19.png[/IMG]



http://www.migrationinformation.org/...lay.cfm?ID=731
So sorry but the coloured thing has NOTHING to do with immigration but is just a statistic showing the ASYLUM REQUESTS !

Last edited by Wollishofener; 02.01.2011 at 23:27.
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  #247  
Old 03.01.2011, 01:30
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Re: Compulsory language test for intending immigrants is on the cards, says Blocher

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So sorry but the coloured thing above has NOTHING to do with immigration but is just a statistic showing the ASYLUM REQUESTS !
I am making a real pig's ear out of this I tried to rectify the above post but got timed out- I couldn't paste the table, so please ignore! The post should have read thus:

Yes, sorry, I meant to paste the table above, http://www.migrationinformation.org/...lay.cfm?ID=731

One thing that I keep arguing and no-one really seems accept my argument is that for you can't count native -born foreigners as foreigners. In any other country they would in all likelihood have taken citizenship.
This is because of a history of stringent Swiss citizenship regulations. In most other countries these native -born foreigners would have become citizens, so the figure (at east for 2007) is inflated by 22.3%.

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Native-born foreigners — also known as the second generation — made up 22.3 percent of the foreign-resident population at the end of 2007
;

Such an attitude, is endemic in Switzerland that someone born in the country is still a foreigner, and is precisely this type of attitude that forms a barrier to integration.

I am from London originally and returned there this summer to be with my family. The ethnic mix in Switzerland in no way compares to what I see in London.


However, getting back to the language alone as the key to integration, (which Blocher claims) from what I have seen it hasn't worked out that well with French speaking Arabs in France, or Dutch speaking immigrants from former colonies in Holland.

My husband said that I am wasting my time looking for a study of the history of integration in Switzerland- that it doesn't exist. It took me a while to understand that by it, he didn't mean a study of integration but integration itself. So I guess if that is the case, it should be renamed a study of non-integration; which perhaps explains the focus on the few success stories.

Basically language is not the primary barrier to integration, attitudes are.


p.s. I think the coloured/colored thing is commonly known as a pie chart.

23% of asylum seekers are accepted I am not sure if Switzerland has accepted a refugee quota but don't believe it has
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  #248  
Old 03.01.2011, 01:38
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Re: Compulsory language test for intending immigrants is on the cards, says Blocher

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Comical situation though; if it is a requirement to learn the language then to prove you learnt the language you should take a test & get a certificate.
But if you live in the German part then the only recognised tests are for Hoch Deutsch whereas all the Swiss speak Swiss German.
So foreigners finish up learning another foreign language.
Maybe I did not express myself well.
I meant that to meet the requirement to learn the language you learn Hoch Deutsch & pass an exam.
But if you want to integrate with the locals speaking dialect then you are limited to exchanging written notes.
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  #249  
Old 03.01.2011, 02:11
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Re: Compulsory language test for intending immigrants is on the cards, says Blocher

This xenophobic message from the SVP periodically rears its ugly head, recently it can be traced back to Schwarzenbach initiative (to deport 300,000 Italian workers in the 1970's) the banner was then taken up by Ulrich Schlüer against the Balkan youths.

Schluer's reaction to the criticisms by Doudou Diène on Swiss Xenophobia was:

"He's from Senegal where they have a lot of problems of their own which need to be solved. I don't know why he comes here instead of getting on with that."[1]"

Diene is fluent in French, French is the official language of Senegal, but just as fluency in French does not help to protect him form the prejudices of the SVP I doubt that language will be the deciding factor in helping immigrants to settle.

The policy is the same whichever initiative or form it comes in and the policy of the SVP is:

Überfremdung ("excess of foreigners")
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  #250  
Old 03.01.2011, 03:18
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Re: Compulsory language test for intending immigrants is on the cards, says Blocher

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One thing that I keep arguing and no-one really seems accept my argument is that for you can't count native -born foreigners as foreigners. In any other country they would in all likelihood have taken citizenship.
This is because of a history of stringent Swiss citizenship regulations. In most other countries these native -born foreigners would have become citizens, so the figure (at east for 2007) is inflated by 22.3%.
Where you are born is by the Napoleonic Continental-European law system not relevant . And a majority of "Foreigners" were NOT born here anyway.


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I am from London originally and returned there this summer to be with my family. The ethnic mix in Switzerland in no way compares to what I see in London.
To compare Switzerland with London, the Capital of the Commonwealth of Nations (I mean the British Empire of course ) is not really relevant. But if you compare Zurich and Geneva with cities of comparable size like Bristol, Newcastle, etc, you can easily see that the ethnic mix over here is much heavier than overthere


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However, getting back to the language alone as the key to integration, (which Blocher claims) from what I have seen it hasn't worked out that well with French speaking Arabs in France, or Dutch speaking immigrants from former colonies in Holland.
Mostly French speaking Arabs in France in reality ARE a success story, if you look at all the businessmen of Arab origin in France, at all the journalists of Arab origin in France etc. And if you look at the ACTUAL situation of people of Arab origin in France, who are absolutely "à pari" with the natives in general. That tremendous problems DO exist does not change this at all. I cannot judge the case of the Dutch speaking immigrants in the Netherlands, but suspect that some minor problems by the xenophobes are distorted out or proportion.


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My husband said that I am wasting my time looking for a study of the history of integration in Switzerland- that it doesn't exist. It took me a while to understand that by it, he didn't mean a study of integration but integration itself. So I guess if that is the case, it should be renamed a study of non-integration; which perhaps explains the focus on the few success stories.
No, this statement is completely and absolutely wrong. Any study of integration in Switzerland shows an amazing case of integration, which already began in the 19th Century. Amazing in so far as a country of EMIgrants over two centuries quite successfully has integrated a considerable number of IMMIgrants.

No, there are NOT a "few success stories" but "a few top success stories". If you regard the successes of modest people who got up in Switzerland as irrelevant, you simply got it wrong. Most of the Lebanese I mentioned above did NOT succeed in the way of Nicolas Hayek, they only managed to become commercial employees, taxi-drivers, small businessmen, etc.



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I think the coloured/colored thing is commonly known as a pie chart.
The coloured thing you put up above just shows the asylum seekers and NOT the immigrants. Most immigrants are NOT asylum seekers


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23% of asylum seekers are accepted I am not sure if Switzerland has accepted a refugee quota but don't believe it has
I don't know about the acceptance rate of asylum seekers here, but this depended largely on the political situation. There is no quota in Switzerland but a heap of complicated criteria applied. And to be clear about it, Switzerland HAD to introduce criteria which mean that people with justifiable reasons to EMIgrate from THEIR country have to be rejected by those in charge

**************************************

just an add-on: In case you ever wondered why there are so many Tamils in Switzerland, the reason has a name: Mrs Margaret Thatcher The "Iron Lady" exactly when Ceylon/SriLanka tumbled into crisis introduced some new anti-immigration laws in Britain so that quite many Tamils opted in favour of Switzerland ...... and rescued the Swiss gastronomy from becoming victim to selling machines and to unfriendly "Balkanese"
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  #251  
Old 03.01.2011, 04:01
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Re: Compulsory language test for intending immigrants is on the cards, says Blocher

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Look, seriously, even before something like this gets out of the gate at the SVP/UDC they'll have added some language to include English in the list of acceptable languages, just to placate the business community. We are clearly not the target for this xenophobic crap.
I don't know. I'm sure there are people in the SVP who don't want to kill the golden goose and make it impossible for English-speaking foreigners to come into the country. But on the other hand, I'm sure there are other Swiss---not just SVP members---who are resentful of the fact that there are many English-speakers who come into Switzerland with a sense of entitlement and don't even try to learn the local languages. (And in all due fairness, they have a good point.) If the only way to make English an "acceptable" language according to this law is to make it an official language of Switzerland at the federal level, well...I don't think that is something the rank-and-file SVP would like to do.
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  #252  
Old 03.01.2011, 05:05
hoppy
 
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Re: Compulsory language test for intending immigrants is on the cards, says Blocher

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=Wollishofener;1057924] To compare Switzerland with London, the Capital of the Commonwealth of Nations (I mean the British Empire of course ) is not really relevant. But if you compare Zurich and Geneva with cities of comparable size like Bristol, Newcastle, etc, you can easily see that the ethnic mix over here is much heavier than overthere
The reason I chose London was in response to your earlier quote- requested by you, that I compare London to the whole of Switzerland.

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You at the other hand have to realize that the population of Switzerland can be compared with the populations of Greater London or Greater Paris.
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Mostly French speaking Arabs in France in reality ARE a success story, if you look at all the businessmen of Arab origin in France, at all the journalists of Arab origin in France etc. And if you look at the ACTUAL situation of people of Arab origin in France, who are absolutely "à pari" with the natives in general. That tremendous problems DO exist does not change this at all. I cannot judge the case of the Dutch speaking immigrants in the Netherlands, but suspect that some minor problems by the xenophobes are distorted out or proportion.
This springs to mind:






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No, this statement is completely and absolutely wrong. Any study of integration in Switzerland shows an amazing case of integration, which already began in the 19th Century. Amazing in so far as a country of EMIgrants over two centuries quite successfully has integrated a considerable number of IMMIgrants.
Every few months in Swissinfo there is an article that will take issue with this few- too many here to list but if you like I will start.

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No, there are NOT a "few success stories" but "a few top success stories". If you regard the successes of modest people who got up in Switzerland as irrelevant, you simply got it wrong. Most of the Lebanese I mentioned above did NOT succeed in the way of Nicolas Hayek, they only managed to become commercial employees, taxi-drivers, small businessmen, etc.
I am not just considering success in financial terms, if so, then yes, I guess that we, as a family, were successful. I consider happiness essential to life, to live in a society as an equal, with mutual respect. Money and mountains and good food can't rectify the daily humiliation of being treated as a second-class citizen.









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I don't know about the acceptance rate of asylum seekers here, but this depended largely on the political situation. There is no quota in Switzerland but a heap of complicated criteria applied. And to be clear about it, Switzerland HAD to introduce criteria which mean that people with justifiable reasons to EMIgrate from THEIR country have to be rejected by those in charge

**************************************

just an add-on: In case you ever wondered why there are so many Tamils in Switzerland, the reason has a name: Mrs Margaret Thatcher The "Iron Lady" exactly when Ceylon/SriLanka tumbled into crisis introduced some new anti-immigration laws in Britain so that quite many Tamils opted in favour of Switzerland ...... and rescued the Swiss gastronomy from becoming victim to selling machines and to unfriendly "Balkanese"
Some things such as xenophobia in a 'civilized country' often conveniently develop
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a heap of complicated criteria
I've never cared for Thatcher although I wouldn't be surprised to see her as a 'poster-girl' in the SVP offices.
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  #253  
Old 03.01.2011, 05:40
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Re: Compulsory language test for intending immigrants is on the cards, says Blocher

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I don't know. I'm sure there are people in the SVP who don't want to kill the golden goose and make it impossible for English-speaking foreigners to come into the country. But on the other hand, I'm sure there are other Swiss---not just SVP members---who are resentful of the fact that there are many English-speakers who come into Switzerland with a sense of entitlement and don't even try to learn the local languages. (And in all due fairness, they have a good point.) If the only way to make English an "acceptable" language according to this law is to make it an official language of Switzerland at the federal level, well...I don't think that is something the rank-and-file SVP would like to do.
Many Swiss are not happy about the tax initiative. Schindler (lift manufacturer?) threatened to leave as this was very un-Swiss. Most Swiss businessmen are anti-EU, anti-competition; which is why they stick to speaking Swiss German whenever possible. You must communicate on their terms.
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  #254  
Old 03.01.2011, 11:35
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Re: Compulsory language test for intending immigrants is on the cards, says Blocher

Hoppy, what do you mean by integration? I don't want to be a "Swiss" (think of stereotypes about Swiss people and you will understand what I mean), nor do I want to "become" anything else, I guess it's a silly thing to wish for. Does this make me non-"integrable"?
If some of the idiots every society has its fair share of want to treat me badly, well, I will develop a thick skin. Problem solved.
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Old 03.01.2011, 11:50
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Re: Compulsory language test for intending immigrants is on the cards, says Blocher

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Most Swiss businessmen are anti-EU, anti-competition...
Sure, as if often brings quality control and the end customer actually starts to be somewhat important. Sure profit becomes not so sure.

I don't know about about Deutchie part, but here people are very multilingual, at least in our environment. Those who are so oposing languages usually have some kind of language learning problem themselves...Just happens the anti EU and competition sentiments fits their current biz mode. There is not much noble anything in it, no matter of the packaging it gets presented in.
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Old 03.01.2011, 16:27
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Re: Compulsory language test for intending immigrants is on the cards, says Blocher

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I don't know. I'm sure there are people in the SVP who don't want to kill the golden goose and make it impossible for English-speaking foreigners to come into the country. But on the other hand, I'm sure there are other Swiss---not just SVP members---who are resentful of the fact that there are many English-speakers who come into Switzerland with a sense of entitlement and don't even try to learn the local languages. (And in all due fairness, they have a good point.) If the only way to make English an "acceptable" language according to this law is to make it an official language of Switzerland at the federal level, well...I don't think that is something the rank-and-file SVP would like to do.
Well let's face it; English is the language of business & the language of the future - in 100 years everyone will be talking English. Even the Chinese are learning English to trade & $100 notes are the official language of Russia .
The fringe languages (& dialects) like Welsh, Flemish, Basque, Swiss German, etc. will fade away like the businessman who stick to them will also fade away.
Brave attempt by the SVP to hold back the tide but doomed to failure.
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Old 03.01.2011, 16:33
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Re: Compulsory language test for intending immigrants is on the cards, says Blocher

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Well let's face it; English is the language of business & the language of the future - in 100 years everyone will be talking English. Even the Chinese are learning English to trade & $100 notes are the official language of Russia .
The fringe languages (& dialects) like Welsh, Flemish, Basque, Swiss German, etc. will fade away like the businessman who stick to them will also fade away.
Brave attempt by the SVP to hold back the tide but doomed to failure.
I beg to differ...
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Old 03.01.2011, 16:41
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Re: Compulsory language test for intending immigrants is on the cards, says Blocher

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Well let's face it; English is the language of business & the language of the future - in 100 years everyone will be talking English. Even the Chinese are learning English to trade & $100 notes are the official language of Russia .
The fringe languages (& dialects) like Welsh, Flemish, Basque, Swiss German, etc. will fade away like the businessman who stick to them will also fade away.
Brave attempt by the SVP to hold back the tide but doomed to failure.
Languages die out or evolve into new ones. If they didn't, you and I would still be speaking Anglo-saxon or even Indo-European. It is the fate of languages! English will be replaced just like its predecessors of the Lingua-francas; we just do not know when or how...
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Old 03.01.2011, 16:45
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Re: Compulsory language test for intending immigrants is on the cards, says Blocher

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Languages die out or evolve into new ones. If they didn't, you and I would still be speaking Anglo-saxon or even Indo-European. It is the fate of languages! English will be replaced just like its predecessors of the Lingua-francas; we just do not know when or how...
True, but today the non English languages are evolving by absorbing English words. Look at the futile attempts in France to ban words like "le weekend" & German Ministries trying to ban words like "handy".
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Old 03.01.2011, 17:04
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Re: Compulsory language test for intending immigrants is on the cards, says Blocher

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True, but today the non English languages are evolving by absorbing English words. Look at the futile attempts in France to ban words like "le weekend" & German Ministries trying to ban words like "handy".
That I call Karma! Especially for the Frenchies, look how many words we absorbed from French into the English language? now it is our turn to impose ours on them...The tables are turned, they have to learn to live with that for the next hmm shall we say 700 yrs?
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