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Finland for Thought » 2005 » January | Politics, current events, culture - In Finland & the United States | Blog of an American living in Finland

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             Politics, current events, culture - In Finland & United States

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Hillary Clinton Collapses During Appearance

Tags: Uncategorized — Author: @ 10:34 pm

The poor girl passed out during a speech. But read this from strange sentence from the article brought to you by AP/Yahoo!…

In September, Clinton’s 58-year-old husband underwent quadruple bypass surgery.

I have never heard anyone refer to Bill Clinton as “Clinton’s 58-year-old husband” ….kinda getting ready for the first “First Man of the White House” I guess.

Raise in Compulsory Education Age Suggested

Tags: Uncategorized — Author: @ 4:37 pm

Minister of education, Tuula Haatainen, has proposed raising the age limit of compulsory education to 18….

Haatainen told the newspaper Uutispäivä Demari that the current age limit of 16 is based on an existing law which is over 80 years old, and that reforms in the system are long overdue.

She said that most people would agree that a 16-year-old is still a child and they should continue their education.

The minister said 5.5 percent of all the students in Finland finish their education at 16.

…is this because she thinks 16 and 17 year-olds are to stupid/lazy/immature/whatever to make this decision for themselves? Or is she more concerned about how the welfare state will handle these flunkies a couple decades later?

John Kerry refuses to rule out 2008 Presidential run

Tags: Uncategorized — Author: @ 12:29 pm

From The Independent

Sounding as much a future presidential candidate as a past one, John Kerry inveighed against George Bush’s policies on Iraq, tax cuts and social security reform yesterday and refused to rule out a second run for the White House in 2008.

…unfortunately (but fortunately for all the Democrats of the U.S.) for him, the Democrats won’t let this happen.

Bill Gates says strict VISA rules hurting US

Tags: Uncategorized — Author: @ 12:19 pm

From Financial Times

Bill Gates says the tough US visa regime has caused a decline in foreign computer science students so severe it is threatening to undermine America’s position in the global software industry.

Speaking at the World Economic Forum in Davos, the Microsoft chairman, whose company is one of the world’s biggest employers of international computer talent, branded the fall in student numbers a disaster.

…I couldn’t agree more.

America bashing from ‘irrational’ Europeans

Tags: Uncategorized — Author: @ 12:17 pm

Australian head John Howard lashes out at ‘irrational’ Europeans for bashing the United States…

JOHN Howard has lashed out at “old Europe”, describing criticism of the US as “unfair and irrational”, as global tensions grow over the Iraq war and free trade.

“Some of the criticism (of the US) by some of the Europeans is unfair and irrational,” Mr Howard said in the panel debate, organised by Britain’s BBC TV.

“It is a sign of parochialism and it is disturbingly intense.”

He said the BBC debate “was based on an anti-American mindset which was established right at the beginning by the moderators from the BBC”.

Mr Howard said anti-Americanism had already affected world co-operation.

…sometimes I think Europeans forget to differentiate “American People” from “American Politicians”.

Coming back down to Earth?

Tags: Uncategorized — Author: @ 11:58 am

YLE reports that Tarja Halonen’s support level has dropped to just 53% and has been continuing to drop over the last six months. Certainly no shoe-in for Presidency in 2006 and certainly no shoe-in for head of the UN. Could Tarja be unemployed in two years time?


Chipping away at the welfare state?

Tags: Uncategorized — Author: @ 10:55 am

Last Thursday YLE reported that the government is proposing limits on the unemployment benefit. Friday, STT reported that Tuula Hatainen, the Minister of Education, has reached an agreement of the maximum duration for degree studies in universities and other institutes of higher education. There is now a seven year limit.

Is this the slow chipping away of the welfare state? Little changes like these are happening constantly, are they just minor adjustments or do they add up to something larger?

Russia Wants to Gag Finnish Media

Tags: Uncategorized — Author: @ 8:34 am

Demanded that she intervene in the way the case has been handled in the Finnish media

Poll: Halonen Support Down, Vanhanen Gains

Tags: Uncategorized — Author: @ 8:33 am

The survey indicates that her support level has dropped to 53 percent

Blizzard Hampered Morning Commute

Tags: Uncategorized — Author: @ 8:33 am

Many trains were also delayed

Finnish Iraqis Flock to Sweden to Vote

Tags: Uncategorized — Author: @ 8:32 am

Busloads of Iraqi expatriates living in various parts of Finland have travelled to Sweden

First signs of ozone hole detected in Finnish Lapland

Tags: Uncategorized — Author: @ 8:27 am

The shape of the arctic stratosphere has taken an alarming turn

Finnish foreign ministry points to shortcomings in its handling of tsunami crisis

Tags: Uncategorized — Author: @ 8:27 am

Had several flaws that slowed and hampered the execution of key tasks

Finnish ministers agree to introduce 7-year higher education graduation limit

Tags: Uncategorized — Author: @ 8:20 am

Ministerial committee led by Tuula Hatainen, the Minister of Education

Customs announce competition for ideas on disposal of huge load of contraband alcohol

Tags: Uncategorized — Author: @ 8:19 am

“We have tried to offer the alcohol for sale, but no users have been found”

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