“Nearly all men can stand adversity, but if you want to test a man’s character, give him power.” Abraham Lincoln

Archive for January 5th, 2010

An Up-And-Coming Language?

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It is a shame that Ed Balls, is the Secretary of State for Children, Schools and Families, doesn’t appear to have much of, er, an education. His comments concerning Mandarin suggested he should be better briefed by civil servants and not left on his own:

“In this new decade our ties with emerging economies like China will become even more important and it’s vital that young people are equipped with the skills which they need, and British businesses need too, in order to succeed in a rapidly-changing world,” he said.

“That’s why we want all secondary pupils to have the opportunity to learn up-and-coming languages like Mandarin if they choose, either at their own school or a nearby school or college.”

More’s the pity that Ed Balls didn’t study basic history otherwise he’d know that Mandarin has been around for at least 600 years in various forms.

Whilst people in the West were struggling out of the Middle Ages, burning witches, murdering each other in abundance, China had a rich and diverse culture under the Ming dynasty.

Whilst Mr Balls’ ancestors were probably grubbing around looking for turnips (potatoes didn’t arrive from Latin America for another 300 years) in China they had invented the novel, paper and other wonders of the period.

Let’s hope that Ed doesn’t make a balls up again with China’s history or language.

Not forgetting that he’s the Minister for schools, oh yeah!

Written by modernityblog

05/01/2010 at 04:07

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Better Than Any Report.

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This YouTube video from the Coordination Forum for Countering Antisemitism covers antisemitic instances in 2009 with greater clarity than any report could:

Written by modernityblog

05/01/2010 at 01:54