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    What is the opinion of TSR Labour over the US investigation into the release of the Lockerbie bomber?
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    (Original post by aaran-j)
    What is the opinion of TSR Labour over the US investigation into the release of the Lockerbie bomber?
    Well it's something they are at liberty to do given the number of US citizens who died on the Pan-Am flight. The same liberty extends to ministers and ex-ministers who choose not to given evidence to the hearing. It's not for us to say the US should mind its business or whatever.
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    Does TSR Labour agree with the decisions made in Wales that mobile phone, energy and water companies can be fined up to £5000, if they fail to provide new standards of service in Welsh? Do you agree with the Welsh Labour Party's decision to also make Welsh an official language of Wales, in addition to English?

    (Original post by Adorno)
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    (Original post by abucha3)
    Does TSR Labour agree with the decisions made in Wales that mobile phone, energy and water companies can be fined up to £5000, if they fail to provide new standards of service in Welsh? Do you agree with the Welsh Labour Party's decision to also make Welsh an official language of Wales, in addition to English?
    This has been on the cards for a very long time (the process began in 1967) but in terms of being of equal status to English in the public sector that was granted in 1993 when the then Conservative Government passed the Welsh Language Act.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Welsh_Language_Act_1993
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Welsh_Language_Act_1967

    What the Welsh Assembly is currently doing is strengthening the position of Welsh in preparation for a renewal of the Welsh Language Act to take into account the last 17 years of development most notably the Welsh Assembly. In other words, the extension of the requirements of the Welsh Language Act to the private sector.

    Welsh is one of the two languages of Wales and it is therefore right and fair that both languages are recognised as official in Wales. So yes, I agree. The others probably don't care.
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    (Original post by Adorno)
    Welsh is one of the two languages of Wales and it is therefore right and fair that both languages are recognised as official in Wales. So yes, I agree. The others probably don't care.
    Do you know of any other countries that operate on this system? I fail to see how this would ever work. I mean it would involve making every single sign, written notice and anything with writing on it, put in Welsh and English - don't you agree that's a little bit silly? I believe that fining companies for using one language over another is inappropriate. I wonder if they would be fined if they used Welsh instead of English?

    I think it would be best if countries, not just Wales, had a primary language and a secondary language rather than joint languages. Can most people speak Welsh?
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    (Original post by abucha3)
    Do you know of any other countries that operate on this system? I fail to see how this would ever work. I mean it would involve making every single sign, written notice and anything with writing on it, put in Welsh and English - don't you agree that's a little bit silly? I believe that fining companies for using one language over another is inappropriate. I wonder if they would be fined if they used Welsh instead of English?
    Yes: Canada. The province of New Brunswick is entirely bilingual and the public sector in every other province is bilingual. Finland has two official languages: Finnish and Swedish. It's really not that uncommon. It's already the case that anything from the public sector that you receive comes in both languages. What this would do is ensure that private companies meet the same standards. You walk into a Tescos in Wales, for example, and the signage is all bilingual. To me it's a natural thing.

    I think it would be best if countries, not just Wales, had a primary language and a secondary language rather than joint languages. Can most people speak Welsh?
    Most people under 30 have some knowledge of Welsh, yes. It's not a majority language but there are areas where Welsh is the first language of people and this includes Cardiff or Swansea [I don't mean the whole city, just pockets] not just areas that you'd expect like Aberystwyth or Bangor.
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    What are your opinions on positive discrimination policies?
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    (Original post by paddy__power)
    What are your opinions on positive discrimination policies?
    Affirmative action has its place in helping to level the playing field particularly in the field of education. The best form we have are the redistribution mechanisms that take excess wealth from the rich to help provide opportunities for the poor and I'm very much in favour of that. But AA has its limits, it would be wrong to hire a person simply because they are black, gay, or from an otherwise disadvantaged background. It would not, however, be wrong to provide the disadvantaged with a leg up at times.
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    (Original post by Adorno)
    Affirmative action has its place in helping to level the playing field particularly in the field of education. The best form we have are the redistribution mechanisms that take excess wealth from the rich to help provide opportunities for the poor and I'm very much in favour of that. But AA has its limits, it would be wrong to hire a person simply because they are black, gay, or from an otherwise disadvantaged background. It would not, however, be wrong to provide the disadvantaged with a leg up at times.
    Thanks for the reply.

    Do you not think that diversity in itself is a desireable outcome in some instances and, as such, AA may be more applicable situation dependant?
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    (Original post by paddy__power)
    Do you not think that diversity in itself is a desireable outcome in some instances and, as such, AA may be more applicable situation dependant?
    Artificial diversity is problematic as it is a bit puppet like. Rather, diversity should come from people having the means to create a diverse society for themselves. This is why AA is far better in terms of economic redistribution and aid programmes rather than deliberately insisting on choosing one group over another.
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    (Original post by Adorno)
    Artificial diversity is problematic as it is a bit puppet like. Rather, diversity should come from people having the means to create a diverse society for themselves. This is why AA is far better in terms of economic redistribution and aid programmes rather than deliberately insisting on choosing one group over another.
    Of course it's more desireable to be self-created almost but, for example, if an admissions team - who would be completely in charge of interviews/admissions etc at a university in America for example- were all middle aged, white, christian, males, say 9 of them, would you accept an argument that using AA to choose the 10th may be the best course of action, if we put aside the fact that it's not ideal that such a situation has arisen anyway.
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    (Original post by paddy__power)
    Of course it's more desireable to be self-created almost but, for example, if an admissions team - who would be completely in charge of interviews/admissions etc at a university in America for example- were all middle aged, white, christian, males, say 9 of them, would you accept an argument that using AA to choose the 10th may be the best course of action, if we put aside the fact that it's not ideal that such a situation has arisen anyway.
    No, because most academics are Left-wing even in the Bible Belt of the US.
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    (Original post by Adorno)
    No, because most academics are Left-wing even in the Bible Belt of the US.
    The same logic can be applied to a variety of situations you awkward man
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    (Original post by paddy__power)
    The same logic can be applied to a variety of situations you awkward man
    Point being that if we're being asked not to make assumptions about people on the colour of their skin or their sexual orientation why is it any difference if the person is white or a Christian or a male? To me, a panel such as that you describe highlights greater problems that can't simply be fixed by ram-rodding a black atheist woman onto it. It highlights the weaknesses of the education system, of aspiration, and inequality all of which require better solutions.
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    (Original post by Adorno)
    Point being that if we're being asked not to make assumptions about people on the colour of their skin or their sexual orientation why is it any difference if the person is white or a Christian or a male? To me, a panel such as that you describe highlights greater problems that can't simply be fixed by ram-rodding a black atheist woman onto it. It highlights the weaknesses of the education system, of aspiration, and inequality all of which require better solutions.
    Surely similar logic would hold that there is no point trying to stop one crime because the larger social causes require better solutions....
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    (Original post by paddy__power)
    Surely similar logic would hold that there is no point trying to stop one crime because the larger social causes require better solutions....
    Are you seriously equating affirmative action with crime? Gee, and I mistook you for a sensible Right-winger. Obviously abucha's nonsense has gotten to you and you're really trying to play up to the fallacies of that particular brand of politics. No, it's not similar logic. But a society that is more equal is less burdened by crime.
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    (Original post by Adorno)
    Are you seriously equating affirmative action with crime? Gee, and I mistook you for a sensible Right-winger. Obviously abucha's nonsense has gotten to you and you're really trying to play up to the fallacies of that particular brand of politics. No, it's not similar logic. But a society that is more equal is less burdened by crime.
    It is similar logic. Don't try to address X specific situation because Y causes won't be solved by Z action to address X situation.

    If a car needs to jump-started each time because you lack the resources to fix the problem does this mean you shouldn't jumpstart your car because it doesn't fix the problem? Surely it makes sense to do both concurrently - address both the specific siuations and attempt to address the causes.

    I could use a variety of examples, the fact I used crime does not mean I consider them the same it means I consider the logic of the situation to be sufficiently parallel so as to make it a useful point to make.

    Think of me what you wish... :dontknow:
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    (Original post by paddy__power)
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    Alright, you want the answer. The groups targetted by positive discrimination are held back in many cases because of poor aspiration, poor economic opportunities, and poor social mobility. Education, as the silver bullet to so many of these barriers, has to be the arena in which we invest so much of our energies. It is no good ramming individuals onto panels simply because they are black or whatever if the underlying social and economic reasons are not solved. To do so is simply tokenism and that is not what the Labour Party is about or for. As I said to you earlier, AA is best viewed in terms of redistribution schemes and programmes in schools which enable those with the fewest opportunities to overcome the barriers and to make society more diverse because that is what they have been able to do not because there is a quota.

    Now, if you don't want to hear that. Go across to the Right and see them denounce AA as racist or whatever crap they've come up with.

    Why simply encourage a second-place solution?
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    (Original post by Adorno)
    Alright, you want the answer. The groups targetted by positive discrimination are held back in many cases because of poor aspiration, poor economic opportunities, and poor social mobility. Education, as the silver bullet to so many of these barriers, has to be the arena in which we invest so much of our energies. It is no good ramming individuals onto panels simply because they are black or whatever if the underlying social and economic reasons are not solved. To do so is simply tokenism and that is not what the Labour Party is about or for. As I said to you earlier, AA is best viewed in terms of redistribution schemes and programmes in schools which enable those with the fewest opportunities to overcome the barriers and to make society more diverse because that is what they have been able to do not because there is a quota.

    Now, if you don't want to hear that. Go across to the Right and see them denounce AA as racist or whatever crap they've come up with.

    Why simply encourage a second-place solution?
    If I didn't want to hear your answer I would not have asked for it, and thanks. Essentially equality of opportunity is paramount over and above equality of outcome. I can agree with that, and I don't disagree that education is primary amongst vehicles to achieve the aforementioned equality of opportunity but what I do question is your last assumption. I don't want to only encourage a second-place solution, but I would encourage a second-place one if a first-place one was not achieveable, and was not likely to happen except over a very long period of time, which is why I would perhaps favour them concurrently. Untill the playing field is self regulating I think there is something to be said for attempting to regulate it, in some instances at least - few though they may be.
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    (Original post by paddy__power)
    I don't want to only encourage a second-place solution, but I would encourage a second-place one if a first-place one was not achieveable, and was not likely to happen except over a very long period of time, which is why I would perhaps favour them concurrently. Untill the playing field is self regulating I think there is something to be said for attempting to regulate it, in some instances at least - few though they may be.
    Glass half empty eh? Why isn't the first-place solution achievable? Why shouldn't we gun for that and put all our effort into that? Playing fields should never be self-regulating but I really, really dislike tokenism which is what you're advocating. The leg up we give people comes from redistribution and support not by insisting, through legislation, that we must have people of certain backgrounds on panels, in this field and that.

    Poverty of opportunity is the greatest barrier to diversity this country has and I'm not going to accept a second rate position as an elastoplast for a broken leg whilst waiting for a plaster-cast.
 
 
 
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