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

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

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14.12.2010

Why do Finns eat meat drowned in marinade?

Tags: The Welfare State — Author: @ 2:06 pm

…supposedly this book will tell you. “Quasi Democracy: Finland’s Fall From the Cradle of Innovation To the Abyss of Stagnation” was just translated into English and is available to download for free.

“What has created this culture of forced uniformity? We believe that the crisis has its roots in the era of so-called Finlandisierung, or Finlandisation.”

This book is the long-awaited abridged English translation of Lumedemokratia (Quasi-Democracy, 2008), which sparked a vivid debate about the nature of Finnish society, from recent history to the present day. It condemns the economic policy pursued during the great depression of the 1990’s and Finland’s continued failure to revamp its suffocatingly rigid labour market structures.

The authors, Katja Boxberg and Taneli Heikka, claim that Finland still lacks essential elements that earmark a genuine Western democracy and true market economy; for this, they argue, we have to thank the ubiquotous Finnish consensus and the disgraceful era of “Finlandisation”. This is a book for anyone wondering why Finns “eat rubbery cheese, dull plastic-wrapped bread, and meat drowned in marinade”.

23.8.2010

How to avoid serving in the Finnish army

Every male Finnish citizen must join the army or face the consequences. It’s 2010, yet the country still fears Russia could invade at any moment (after their embarrassment during the winter war, the Ruskies willl be sure to attack during the summer) …yet the Russians haven’t scared the Finns enough to join NATO – so at about age 18, fresh out of high school, Finnish boys leave home for the first time and spend six months running around in the woods.

The women folk say, “They leave as boys, and come back as men!”, but it’s more like, “They leave as boys, and come back as alcoholic boys.”

Why don’t Finnish women have to join the army?

Finnish law states that Finnish women are paid 20% less than their male counterpart for doing the exact same job. (Also, “periods” and “childbirth” are cited as being tougher than joining the army)

This sounds like a shit deal – how do I weasel my way out?

Most Finnish boys join the army fresh out of high school, right before their first year in college (or working at Hesburger), so they don’t piss away six months of their life later on, when life really matters. Finns have up until their 30th birthday to join or else they’re sent to prison. But if you have trouble holding on to slippery soap in the shower, here’s some army alternatives…

Civil Service – Would you rather fingerbang your girlfriend than sleep in tents with boys? Well then join the civil service…and everyone will say you’re “gay”! Or you’re “a communist”. Instead of six months in the forest, you’ll spend one year performing some meaningless task for the state. You get to enjoy yourself like any young adult should, but the entire Finnish society will ridicule you until you die: Your father will be ashamed of you, your friends will make fun of you, your neighbors will talk behind your back, and your future perspective employers will turn you down from jobs.

Become a Jehovah’s Witness – All other religions must do their civic duty, but somehow the Jehovah’s Witnesses are immune because violence is against their religion. Do you also believe in non-violence but don’t believe in some sort of magical sky daddy who won’t wake you from the dead until the Earth is free of sin? Tough sky-shit! But the JW’s have a civic duty of their own: knocking on stranger’s doors and handing out copies of The Watchtower. I don’t know about you, but I’d take six months in the forest or a lifetime of being gay over that!

Don’t be Finnish – If you’re a foreigner in Finland, and you’re thinking of applying for Finnish citizenship cause you met some cute blonde chic, and now you’d like to impress your friends back home with dual-citizenship…wait until your 30th birthday – then you don’t need to join the army. It’ll take you until you’re 30 years-old anyways to learn Finnish to pass the citizenship exam, so don’t worry. (or in my case, until I’m 90)

Flee the country – Definitely the longest alternative – some have chosen to flee the country for several years hoping that their prison sentence will have expired upon their return. …just like Bill Clinton.

Don’t Pass Go, Go Directly to Jail – Finnish prisons aren’t so bad. In fact they’re some of the finest in the world. There’s more freedoms than North Korea, cooler weather than Afghanistan, and better food than Great Britian. Zing!

Tell’em you’re gay! – Wrong country, that only works in the United States.

18.1.2010

Which Finnish political party should I join?

Tags: Culture,How-to,The Welfare State — Author: @ 11:40 pm

With over seven political parties in parliament (eight to be exact) and many obscure small parties, choosing a political party can be overwhelming – especially since the differences between each are so minute. Here’s a quick run-down of each party to help you decide…

National Coalition Party (Kokoomus) – The Conservatives promise to lower your taxes! With some of the highest taxes in the world, you’ll quickly come to realize that these people are assholes.

Centre Party (Keskusta) – Do you live on a farm? Do you enjoy small town life? Do you distrust the EU? Then the Centre Party is for you, hillbilly! Life was certainly better when we all milked cows for a living, wasn’t it?

Social Democrats (SDP) -Lenin, Guevara, and Marx were all great thinkers, weren’t they? If you answered “yes” to that question, than the Social Democrats are for you, comrade. Now shorten those work weeks and wonder why you don’t get paid enough. Strike!!

Swedish People’s Party (RKP) – Is Swedish your mother tongue? ‘Nuff said, this party is yours. Amazing how everyone who speaks the same language is expected to share the same political beliefs.

True Finns (Perussuomalaiset) – Foreigners sure are ruining the greatest nation in the world, aren’t they?? If so, then this is your party, but if you read this blog and you can speak English and you’re not a complete idiot…they’re probably ot for you.

Christian Democrats (KD) – Do you have a special relationship with Jesus? And do you live out in the middle of nowhere because the devil resides in large cities as well as your television set? Hallelujah you’ve found your party!

Green Party (Vihreat) – Are you young, idealistic and fanatical about mother Earth? Then come share a joint with these hippies.

Left Alliance (Vasemistoliitto) – But what about all the good things the Soviet Union did! Right?? Left!!

Liberal Party (Liberaalit) – Are you a confused, twisted, and borderline psychopathic male between the ages of 16 and retarded? You’ve found your home.

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