Merkel has woken up and recognized that multiculturalism has “utterly failed” to do anything but create ghettoization.

She seems utterly puzzled by the realization that people are not widgets that can be shuffled around to make cute patterns.

3 thoughts on “Widgets”

  1. “She seems utterly puzzled by the realization that people are not widgets ”

    Actually the story is 9 years old… so it’s even worse. She realized the policy doesn’t work and then engaged in the single biggest implementation of it in years.
    On the other hand, I’ve heard (forget where) that in the original context she was saying something more like “the way we’ve done it so far” didn’t work,clearly implying that there was a way to make it work. I don’t know where to find the original speech and my German is nowhere near good enough to pick up on that kind of nuance.
    The last I’ve heard (a couple of months ago) the 2015 arrivals are doing about like the most skeptical thought they would. Most remain dependent on state aid (mostly due to failure to learn enough German and/or culturally adapt).
    Just found this, which tries to put as good a face on the situation as possible… and it’s still pretty bad.



    1. Merkel’s comments from nine years ago make more sense if you consider that the German government spent decades doing absolutely nothing to try to integrate immigrants and refugees. One of my friends was living in an immigrant heavy neighborhood in Berlin in the early 2000s and her neighborhood elementary school did not have a single teacher who was trained to teach German to non-native speakers. There was another school nearby that offered German for non-native kids, but it was only for children who were born outside of Germany, kids who were born in Germany were automatically considered to be native speakers and put into regular classes no matter what their actual language skills were. The result was first grade classes with a dozen different languages, maybe two or three kids who spoke German at home, and improperly trained teachers trying to figure out how to teach German to first graders instead of teaching what they were supposed to be teaching. Native-German parents were regularly moving to get their kids into different schools and my friend was considering doing the same before her daughter got old enough to go to school.

      The Germans have pumped a lot of money into language teaching for the refugees since 2015, but you can’t ramp up the number of trained and talented language teachers overnight and I’ve heard some places were hiring basically anyone with a university degree to be language teachers for refugees. There are also problems with attendance at the mandatory language courses. I have another friend who is involved in that and he reports that some of the refugees are really dedicated and really want to learn German, but that at least half the learners in his courses are frequently absent or regularly show up an hour late for a two hour class session. It’s a frustrating situation to teach in because half the group is hopelessly behind after a couple of weeks.


  2. An interesting article re education in Germany:

    Германия: кризис в системе образования

    Among the things that stood out was the corporate influence on textbooks:

    В недавней статье онлайн-газеты Deutschlandfunk было сообщение о том, что 20 из 30 немецких DAX-корпораций (Deutscher Aktienindex – важнейший фондовый индекс Германии) являются спонсорами различных школьных мероприятий и школьных учебников, содержание которых не проверяется. Такая ситуация возникла, опять-таки, из-за недостаточного государственного финансирования школ.


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