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Comment Re:Is this really international news? (Score 1) 173

I have this impression though that your people are coming to their senses a bit, aren't they? Which would be great, as Sweden is being held as the moral beacon and example for Finland, so we always have to wait for "permission" from you to do things, otherwise the left complains that we are "no longer a civlized Nordic country".

Comment Re:the Nordic Model (Score 1) 173

I am not really sure what exactly the "entry-level jobs" would actually be in our economy... there is only so much need for burger-flippers. This is also the reason why I am very skeptical of in particular the less-educated refugees/immigrants ever becoming gainfully employed. If we have issues with nonskilled youngsters of our own, how are we going to employ nonskilled grown-up foreigners?

Norway has had an interesting experience along these lines, by the way. Their own young people pretty much just refuse to do anything, and all have academic degrees... so guess what? Now Norway is concerned that we Finns must learn more Swedish at schools so that we could produce labourers for jobs their own kids refuse to do.

Comment Re:Is this really international news? (Score 1) 173

It works in Finland all the same. We got the absurd "civilization being destroyed in Finland due to university budget cuts" story on Slashdot for the exact same reason -- the politically lefty types want to create a negative sentiment abroad that they can then point to, and demand that we must do something to fix our emerging bad reputation. As if we'd been seen as some shining beacon of everything great and good before...

Comment Re:how is this relevant to /. (Score 1) 308

The Swedish People's Party did achieve more than they ever wished possible though, with the compulsory Swedish-education starting at sixth grade and having essentially their own programme written as "national language strategy" of the government, with all the loaded language and whatnot.

But that's what they're good at -- providing a convenient extra 10 seats, especially when everyone seemed to want to be in government so that the True Finns wouldn't.

Comment Re:how is this relevant to /. (Score 2, Insightful) 308

In other words, this is exactly what I expected it to be -- butthurt lefties trying to raise up negative sentiments abroad, even when the UH really doesn't mean anything to your average slashdot reader. The "ooh, look at how we are perceived abroad now!" tactic is typical. In reality, nobody cares, but just might end up with the notion that something awful is happening in Finland.

I am a UH CS dept alumnus just like Torvalds is, but if something's got to give in our current economic situation, something's got to give. As I see it, we already over-educate very average Master's degree holders at mostly average universities. Not everyone actually needs an academic education that tends to last until the person's 30s (we've got very slow students as well). I find that despite having gone to that particular school, I am mostly self-educated in most things, even though I've got the degree diploma. So it is more important to teach people how to teach themselves, than to formally over-educate them.

To make our universities better, we actually might look into raising the bar a bit and doing less but better.

Comment Re:the first thing I thought when I read this (Score 2) 519

Finland has a revolutionary system with three teachers per class and 20 student caps

I wonder where this three teachers per class idea comes from, I've never heard anything of the sort, and I'm Finnish and have gone through said system. There is one teacher per class, sometimes an assistant, and two teachers per class in cases where the class size is very big. Because of cutbacks, we've had to stuff as many kids into a classroom as we can -- Finland is not doing too well at the moment when it comes to government finances.

But the system does have a lot of strengths, among other things the fact that teachers are well educated and it is a very respected profession with a lot of autonomy. They don't want to screw up the kids' futures a bit like a doctor wouldn't want to kill a patient, because it was competitive to get into teacher education to begin with...

Also, even though our school system does encourage kids to think for themselves, I would offer a somewhat conservative take as to why it works -- it really still is a somewhat traditional, teacher-led system. And of course it helps that Finland is for the time being a rather homogenous society where it is understood that if you are supposed to listen to the teacher, you are supposed to listen to the teacher.

Submission + - NASA funded moon base study gives Newt Gingrich the last laugh (examiner.com)

MarkWhittington writes: Thus far, the NASA-funded study that suggests that American moon boots could be on the lunar surface by 2021 for $10 billion, which was rolled out not coincidentally on the 46th anniversary of the Apollo 11 moon landing, has not gotten any reaction from politicians. But, Newt Gingrich, former House Speaker and former presidential candidate, must be feeling a kind of bittersweet vindication. When he ran for president in 2012, he proposed building a commercial moon base and ran into a withering barrage of ridicule that sank his candidacy.

Comment Re:Disabled (Score 1) 155

The argument that "business" should not have to do anything with disabled people as they create costs is particularly concerning. It means exclusion from most of the workings of the world as "business" is what is supposed to run the world. Another problem is the rather nasty attitudes about placing blame and the hyperbole about wanting to deny others their ability. It's the sort of paranoia out of Ayn Rand really, and the most aggressive people might actually be able to justify things I'd rather not contemplate, if they come to the conclusion that we're living "undeserved" lives.

It is quite a feat that it's nearly enough to radicalize me, and I'm a guy who is mostly interested in things "working" in general, and am even amenable to arguments that SOMETIMES it MIGHT be true that some of the complaints of the other side may have merit, and that not quite everything is necessary. But then again, I already give up on a lot of things, even though they may not understand it.

Comment Re:No surprised in good ole Mass... (Score 1) 155

There is a logic to it.

- Pure market solution would not provide for this
- Market solution with "guidance" is wrong as it interferes with the pure market solution
- Government solution is wrong because it taxes people, but at least people see how they are being manhandled by government. It is also a worse solution, so we still prefer it because it is.... worse.

Comment Re:No surprised in good ole Mass... (Score 1) 155

Not necessarily. If the majority of people agree that, say, accessibility is desirable, be it whether they pay through taxes or some "hidden" cost, then it remains to decide what is the best way to implement the goal.

If it is then agreed that the best way to get disabled people included in the world is to make sure that competition does not mean accessibility is sacrificed, then they might not be interested in getting this "tax signal" at all.

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