Spanish ban on Catalonia strikes again. Last time?

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Re: Spanish ban on Catalonia strikes again. Last time?

Postby Jessica » Thu Feb 04, 2010 1:19 am UTC

Lucrece wrote:It will not separate. These laws are just bureaucratic spite. They target Spanish alone. One thing to consider for those who feel small additions to signs are insignificant: Start a fucking business and get off the forums. Even a few inches out of the norm in a sign in the US will get you letters threatening fines if it's not a particular size, color, shape, and length.

Not to mention that all the defenders here are completely glossing over the fact that the law targets Spanish in particular above all other languages.
Yes. In the same way that french language laws target English, the Catalonian language law targets the other major dominant language. Strange how that works. It's like they're fighting a specific problem of Spanish overshadowing Catalan, and not every language overshadowing it.

If, somehow, all of spain decided one day that, to be dicks, they'd speak Cantonese, the Catalonians would make that their target. But, Catalan has nothing to fear from Cantonese, so they don't talk about it.

Many countries have laws about language (at least according to wikipedia). Some attempt to keep one language in tandem with another, others try to wipe out minority languages. This one is working against the majority (spanish) to keep a minority language alive in a region (catalan). Or at least that's what it looks like.

So, yeah. Just because it targets only one language doesn't mean it's out of spite.
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Re: Spanish ban on Catalonia strikes again. Last time?

Postby Lucrece » Thu Feb 04, 2010 6:06 am UTC

But it IS spite when Spanish is already a dominant language in the region.

The problem I have with your view is that you value the minority position that Catalan should be kept even if a large part of the population is drifting out of it. They have a right to drift out of the language, and a group of resentful bureaucrats should not be trying to stifle the flow of the people's culture.

You are causing financial harm to someone for not adhering to the unjust law. It's eerie in the same manner you see debate in the US about outlawing Spanish interpreters in public services, because the damn spicks need to speak English. It's odious. You should not punish people financially for speaking the language and partaking in the culture that they determine to best fulfill their needs.

Abundance of laws does not lend legitimacy. There is an abundance of laws outlawing homosexuality, for one. In most of the world, marriages are arranged more than out of love. In most of the world, women have little recourse legally against rape. Doesn't make it right.

Philwelch wrote:
Lucrece wrote:Catalonia has a symbiotic relationship with Spain (needing Spain more than Spain needs them), and its economy has been reliant on them for a while. Catalonians won't separate because they have great cultural reliance on Spain as well.


The big question to me, and the big question for Europe in the future in the general sense, is this: how much will that matter as the EU progresses? If Spain and Catalonia were both independent EU members, what more would be required for the EU take up the slack left by the central Spanish government in maintaining that symbiosis and those close ties? In the general case, how many European states will be more free to break up as the cultural, travel, economic, and political advantages of a central government are increasingly satisfied by the EU?

General_Norris wrote:
Philwelch wrote:Catalonia will have a referendum and the central Spanish government will respect their right to self-determination? Is it completely naive to expect the Spanish to let them go?


Yes,considering the Spanish politics it's naïve but the thing is, the independents themselves refuse to have a referendum because they know they will lose. They toy with the idea, and do their own illegal referendums so as to have some (biased) proof but they don't want any referendums.


So do you think the Catalan secessionists will immediately turn to violence? Or will they just kind of sit around pining and agitating like the Scottish secessionists (or for that matter the Quebec secessionists)?


- We'll have to see as it plays out. I'm highly skeptical the EU will have the means to tend to and benefit Catalonia the same way Spain does; national governments already have trouble no screwing over its citizens; put that dilemma on a much larger scale, and I don't think it'll play out too well.

-Take a look at the Basque region for a more local comparison. Look at ETA.
Last edited by Lucrece on Thu Feb 04, 2010 6:16 am UTC, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Spanish ban on Catalonia strikes again. Last time?

Postby Philwelch » Thu Feb 04, 2010 6:11 am UTC

Lucrece wrote:But it IS spite when Spanish is already a dominant language in the region.


If Spanish wasn't a dominant language, they wouldn't *need* to make the laws.

The problem I have with your view is that you value the minority position that Catalan should be kept even if a large part of the population is drifting out of it. They have a right to drift out of the language, and a group of resentful bureaucrats should not be trying to stifle the flow of the people's culture.


That argument basically opposes *any* means of protecting culture. Don't Canadians have a right to watch as much American TV as they want and listen to as much American music as they want without any of those silly "Canadian content" regulations on TV and radio? Isn't it spiteful that by law, Canada supports Canadian filmmaking just to stick it in Hollywood's eye? What about countries that close themselves off from trade so they don't import American ideas about mass consumption along with the blue jeans and McDonald's?
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Re: Spanish ban on Catalonia strikes again. Last time?

Postby Lucrece » Thu Feb 04, 2010 6:17 am UTC

Those come at the detriment of their citizens. You're not doing much good to your citizens by limiting their options.
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Re: Spanish ban on Catalonia strikes again. Last time?

Postby Aetius » Thu Feb 04, 2010 6:25 am UTC

I'm somewhat amused and dismayed at how often the rest of the world treats America like we're some highly addictive drug that must be regulated lest the lower classes get hooked on the Ameri-crack.

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Re: Spanish ban on Catalonia strikes again. Last time?

Postby General_Norris » Thu Feb 04, 2010 9:57 am UTC

Philwelch wrote:So do you think the Catalan secessionists will immediately turn to violence? Or will they just kind of sit around pining and agitating like the Scottish secessionists (or for that matter the Quebec secessionists)?


There have been Catalan terrorists groups in the past but they were not as important as the GRAPO and ETA. In fact the Catalanoian independentist movement benefits greatly from ETA.

But it's a pure hypothetical because they are not going to secede.

So, yeah. Just because it targets only one language doesn't mean it's out of spite.


We are killing only black people but we are not racist! And again, if you were forced to speak another language other than English in your very own country, would you like it? You have not answered that yet.

You see, this is like Bullfighting. It's going to die. Nobody likes bullfighting except old people. Young people think it's boring and don't watch it so it gathers less and less audience. Similarly, Flamenco is not as popular as Rock. What's the point? Are you going to force people to go watch bullfighting and to listen to music they don't like to preserve a "culture"? Please it's stupid. If you want it it won't dissapear, it's still here in museums. Don't force the population to hurt themselves.

Jessica, please, answer this question. Would you feel it's fine to force you to learn one of the native american languages, to limit how you can express yourself to that language even if you don't want to to preserve the "culture"? I mean, this is what we are talking about.

@Aetius

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*The art of using public funds to fill their pockets.

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Re: Spanish ban on Catalonia strikes again. Last time?

Postby smw543 » Thu Feb 04, 2010 11:55 am UTC

General_Norris wrote:This quote by smw543 says a lot. (It's not well written but it's the intention that counts)

Bah, I've barely had a chance to use Spanish in six years. At least I tried!
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Re: Spanish ban on Catalonia strikes again. Last time?

Postby Jessica » Thu Feb 04, 2010 1:30 pm UTC

Lucrece wrote:Those come at the detriment of their citizens. You're not doing much good to your citizens by limiting their options.
Uh, no? The options aren't limited at all (in Canada). We have just as much American content. We just also have Canadian content. In fact, the content laws in Canada have been a major boon to our arts and entertainment, allowing smaller bands, shows, actors, to flourish, and become great.

Also, it's nothing like the Spanish interpreters. Because they're not saying you have to learn Catalan.

There are problems with language laws. I do recognize that. It's hard to balance a desire for multiculturalism or pluralism, with the desires of everyone. But, going for homogenization isn't the answer either. Which is the result of the removal of laws like this.

Unless Spain recently stopped being a democracy, I'm pretty sure the lawmakers in that country are still elected. Yes. Most people in Catalonia speak Spanish. Most people in Quebec speak English. English has become almost a lingua franca especially of business in the modern world (due mainly to American interests). I'm sure Spain in general would disagree with people saying they should all just speak god damn English like "everyone else". Which is what Catalonia (and Quebec, and Irish, and...) is doing. They're trying to protect a small aspect that they consider important, their language. Without a language law stating that things have to be in Catalan more prominently than Spanish, they're forcing people who would (without the law) just put it in Spanish, until no one spoke Catalan anymore. And that's not a good thing (in my opinion).
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Re: Spanish ban on Catalonia strikes again. Last time?

Postby Owijad » Thu Feb 04, 2010 2:10 pm UTC

I think the fundamental issue you're having with this, Jessica, is that's you're not grasping a simple truth about the political situation. Namely, Catalan is stupid. It's a dumb language that has no business existing in the first place, much less being written on shops.

Taken in this context, I'm sure you can see how bizarre it is to the rest of us that it would not only be present on storefronts, but that it would be written, legibly, in large font, sometimes even to the exclusion of other, real languages. Any statute endorsing this sort of behavior is questionable in the extreme, but a law going so far as to mandate it? It defies conception.
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Re: Spanish ban on Catalonia strikes again. Last time?

Postby Chen » Thu Feb 04, 2010 2:17 pm UTC

Owijad wrote:I think the fundamental issue you're having with this, Jessica, is that's you're not grasping a simple truth about the political situation. Namely, Catalan is stupid. It's a dumb language that has no business existing in the first place, much less being written on shops.

Taken in this context, I'm sure you can see how bizarre it is to the rest of us that it would not only be present on storefronts, but that it would be written, legibly, in large font, sometimes even to the exclusion of other, real languages. Any statute endorsing this sort of behavior is questionable in the extreme, but a law going so far as to mandate it? It defies conception.


Uh evidence of this? Or is this just an opinion? Because if its an opinion (which is what it sounds like) I could easily make the exact same post with "English" replacing "Catalan".

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Re: Spanish ban on Catalonia strikes again. Last time?

Postby Jessica » Thu Feb 04, 2010 2:18 pm UTC

Chen wrote:
Owijad wrote:I think the fundamental issue you're having with this, Jessica, is that's you're not grasping a simple truth about the political situation. Namely, Catalan is stupid. It's a dumb language that has no business existing in the first place, much less being written on shops.

Taken in this context, I'm sure you can see how bizarre it is to the rest of us that it would not only be present on storefronts, but that it would be written, legibly, in large font, sometimes even to the exclusion of other, real languages. Any statute endorsing this sort of behavior is questionable in the extreme, but a law going so far as to mandate it? It defies conception.
Uh evidence of this? Or is this just an opinion? Because if its an opinion (which is what it sounds like) I could easily make the exact same post with "English" replacing "Catalan".
Thank you, Chen.
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Re: Spanish ban on Catalonia strikes again. Last time?

Postby TheGrammarBolshevik » Thu Feb 04, 2010 2:43 pm UTC

I detect irony.
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Re: Spanish ban on Catalonia strikes again. Last time?

Postby Ixtellor » Thu Feb 04, 2010 2:55 pm UTC

Jessica wrote:They're trying to protect a small aspect that they consider important, their language


Nobody, other than Owijad apparently, thinks your don't have the right to promote or encourage a language.
The problem for me is that your effectively pointing guns at people to do it.

If you want your language to endure, speak it, write it, and teach it to your kids. Use it every chance you get.
Make an infomercial about how incredible awsome it is. Don't point a gun at someone or threaten them with jail time to speak your language.

I feel bad that your language is unpopular and dying, but why impose it on people when they are soo clearly rejecting it?
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Re: Spanish ban on Catalonia strikes again. Last time?

Postby smw543 » Thu Feb 04, 2010 3:00 pm UTC

Jessica wrote:Unless Spain recently stopped being a democracy, I'm pretty sure the lawmakers in that country are still elected. Yes. Most people in Catalonia speak Spanish. Most people in Quebec speak English.

Statistics vary but generally agree that over 90% of Catalonians understand Spanish (Wikipedia claims 99%), whereas 54% of Quebecers know only French. I'm not sure that Quebec and Catalonia are really analogous in terms of language laws (the laws themselves seem similar, but the situations are rather different).

The laws are partly intended to reverse what Franco did, and partly as a resistance of a demographic invasion. This really reminds me of the periodic efforts by certain South Floridian groups to impose English on the Cuban community. I can see requiring that Catalan always be an available option (e.g.: having menus in Spanish and Catalan instead of just Catalan), but not what they're doing now.
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Re: Spanish ban on Catalonia strikes again. Last time?

Postby General_Norris » Thu Feb 04, 2010 3:25 pm UTC

Hey Jessica if you dont' want to answer my questions then why bother to post? I can play that game too, but it's not nice.

You are IGNORING facts pressed against you all the time int his very thread by people who live there and klnow more than you. So please get out of here or start by listening people instead of cherry-picking what you like

Because they're not saying you have to learn Catalan.


Since you don't want to read you can say that you didn't know that THEY FORCE YOU TO SPEAK CATALAN. It has been said countless times in this thread. Get over it, if you don't like my points then leave, but don't ignore what we are discussing.

So I ask again. Would you be happy if I forced you to speak a native american language? Don't you think it's wrong?

And yes, everyone speaks Spanish. Unless they lived under a rock.

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Re: Spanish ban on Catalonia strikes again. Last time?

Postby Jessica » Thu Feb 04, 2010 4:26 pm UTC

Ok. I read the thread again, to see what I missed.
So, while people can speak Spanish in public, all public forms are in Catalan, and public officials only speak in Catalan. Ok, that's stupid and needs to be stopped. That's an abuse.

The signage law which is being protested, where it specifically says that Catalan has to be more prominent then Spanish, but doesn't say Spanish CAN'T be on the sign, that I don't see a problem with. It just means people have a choice what language to read.

Forcing students to learn only in Catalan, and have no Spanish teaching (save for some small classes) is stupid. It should be repealed. Having the choice to go to Catalan immersion, or having one class of Catalan in school? I see no problem with that (that's the system we have in Canada regarding french).

So, ok. I understand the frustration, and why you dislike it. If someone put a gun to my head and said "speak in french or die" I'd die. And I'd hate it. I won't use first nations, because they have many different languages, so it wouldn't work. But, if it's just that forms are in both languages (french/english in canada), or you can choose to only speak one language, then that's fine.

Does that makes sense? Sorry I misunderstood the extent that the law went too, and assumed the people weren't dumbfucks.
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Re: Spanish ban on Catalonia strikes again. Last time?

Postby Owijad » Thu Feb 04, 2010 4:38 pm UTC

[fakeedit] well I feel silly now, but damned if I'm going to throw this away after all that backbreaking labor in the typingmines.

Putting aside the large body of research demonstrating how lame Catalan is, even by the standard of crummy quasi-languages, it's important to note that the Quebec parallel is inapt. There is a whole quagmire of political maneuvering surrounding Catalonian cultural pride, to the point of implicitly encouraging hostile and even violent attitudes about what would essentially be a non-issue were it not for the people who stand to gain from drummed up controversy.
Even if it were wholly pacifistic, a basic motivation is the hope of ramping up insularity and exclusivity in the province, which is harmful to cultural attitudes and leads itself down a road which is very bad for citizens of Catalonia, namely aspirations of secession. And it's not like they even have to secede for this politicking to hurt people. The regressive, repressive nature of the policies are creating a widening fissure between the education children are given and the skills which will actually serve them in a progressing world. Painting this all as benign heritage preservation really misses the point. It's not Quebec.

I understand the desire to fight homogeny, but the world really is getting smaller. It is severely shortchanging the population to try and hide that fact. So yes, while support of diversity has value for a lot of reasons, when you have to actually put real humans on the chopping block in its name, it's time to reconsider your priorities.
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Postby Jessica » Thu Feb 04, 2010 4:50 pm UTC

It's funny, the only difference I see between Quebec and Catalan is that French lasted longer and didn't get stamped out. A lot of the french language laws in Quebec are there because of nationalist separatists. We have a national separatist party in Quebec (partie Quebequois) who's goal is to have Quebec leave Canada. There were terrorists (FLQ) who held people hostage in the 70s over this shit.

Really, the big difference is that Spain managed to crush Catalan in the past, while Canada (and the English) were unable to crush the French.

Again. I don't mind pride in being Catalonian. It sucks that those people are douches about it though, and are making stupid laws. But, if it were more of a regional look (eg: we just want our area to have a distinctive look, and thus we try to keep the language alive) then cool. But, yeah, the way it's being done is stupid.
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Re: Spanish ban on Catalonia strikes again. Last time?

Postby Owijad » Thu Feb 04, 2010 4:55 pm UTC

It's not that one has separatists and the other doesn't, it's that one has significant government powers which exploit separatist sentiment to deleterious effect, while the other rides around on scooters saying "ciao".
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Re: Spanish ban on Catalonia strikes again. Last time?

Postby Chen » Thu Feb 04, 2010 5:15 pm UTC

Owijad wrote:It's not that one has separatists and the other doesn't, it's that one has significant government powers which exploit separatist sentiment to deleterious effect, while the other rides around on scooters saying "ciao".


Wait which one is the one with the significant government power which exploit separatist sentiment? I'm confused at the point you're trying to make here because I'm fairly sure both of these examples have this significant government power you're talking about.

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Re: Spanish ban on Catalonia strikes again. Last time?

Postby Jessica » Thu Feb 04, 2010 5:19 pm UTC

Chen wrote:
Owijad wrote:It's not that one has separatists and the other doesn't, it's that one has significant government powers which exploit separatist sentiment to deleterious effect, while the other rides around on scooters saying "ciao".
Wait which one is the one with the significant government power which exploit separatist sentiment? I'm confused at the point you're trying to make here because I'm fairly sure both of these examples have this significant government power you're talking about.
I thought he was making a joke about how the differences aren't really differences. At least that's how I took it originally.
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Re: Spanish ban on Catalonia strikes again. Last time?

Postby Owijad » Thu Feb 04, 2010 5:26 pm UTC

I thought Quebecers were more of an autonomous collective?

*edit* My general point is that there is a much more hostile atmosphere about the issue in Spain vs. in Canadia, so any comparison drawn has to take into account that Quebec sovereignty and cultural preservation is a much less dangerous game. In addition, the movement in Catalonia is to a much greater extent a political fabrication rather than an authentic cultural divide.
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Re: Spanish ban on Catalonia strikes again. Last time?

Postby Philwelch » Thu Feb 04, 2010 6:32 pm UTC

Owijad wrote:Putting aside the large body of research demonstrating how lame Catalan is, even by the standard of crummy quasi-languages...


Are you ever going to make any substantive points here other than these crypto-racist remarks? Quite frankly, every argument you're making could have been applied to the Irish 100 years ago, and now they're one of the economic powerhouses of Europe, despite the fact that they call their house of commons the "Dáil Éireann" and their prime minister the "Taoiseach" and their president the "Uachtarán na hÉireann". (And if you actually go to Ireland, most of them do speak English, but for some "silly" reason their "lame" Gaelic "quasi-language" is still in official use.)
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Re: Spanish ban on Catalonia strikes again. Last time?

Postby Lucrece » Thu Feb 04, 2010 7:16 pm UTC

Jessica wrote:
Lucrece wrote:Those come at the detriment of their citizens. You're not doing much good to your citizens by limiting their options.
Uh, no? The options aren't limited at all (in Canada). We have just as much American content. We just also have Canadian content. In fact, the content laws in Canada have been a major boon to our arts and entertainment, allowing smaller bands, shows, actors, to flourish, and become great.

Also, it's nothing like the Spanish interpreters. Because they're not saying you have to learn Catalan.

There are problems with language laws. I do recognize that. It's hard to balance a desire for multiculturalism or pluralism, with the desires of everyone. But, going for homogenization isn't the answer either. Which is the result of the removal of laws like this.

Unless Spain recently stopped being a democracy, I'm pretty sure the lawmakers in that country are still elected. Yes. Most people in Catalonia speak Spanish. Most people in Quebec speak English. English has become almost a lingua franca especially of business in the modern world (due mainly to American interests). I'm sure Spain in general would disagree with people saying they should all just speak god damn English like "everyone else". Which is what Catalonia (and Quebec, and Irish, and...) is doing. They're trying to protect a small aspect that they consider important, their language. Without a language law stating that things have to be in Catalan more prominently than Spanish, they're forcing people who would (without the law) just put it in Spanish, until no one spoke Catalan anymore. And that's not a good thing (in my opinion).


You took my response on a broader scope than it was. It referred to Philwelch's point of nations refusing trade for notions that are easily identified as blatant xenophobia.

Nobody needs to "protect culture". The people will stick to their culture if they want. Fining people for taking the option of speaking Spanish, however, is petty.

Fund Catalan language and cultural prograsm; that's not a problem. The problem is when you try to foster something by financially/socially assaulting something else.
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Re: Spanish ban on Catalonia strikes again. Last time?

Postby gmalivuk » Thu Feb 04, 2010 7:40 pm UTC

Owijad wrote:Putting aside the large body of research demonstrating how lame Catalan is, even by the standard of crummy quasi-languages

No, how about you back your dumb-fuck claims up, instead of magnanimously deciding to "put aside" research that, as far as I know, doesn't exist and never has.

I also thought your earlier post was being ironic. But if you're being serious, then bloody put up or shut up and provide some links to all this alleged "research".

And hopefully in doing so you can explain what it even means for something to be a "lame" "quasi"language...
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Re: Spanish ban on Catalonia strikes again. Last time?

Postby Jessica » Thu Feb 04, 2010 9:03 pm UTC

Lucerne, could you read what I said after that post? The one where I explained my views on the specific catalan situation, about fining people who don't speak the language? I agree, that fining people who don't want down the street speaking Catalan is stupid. Forcing someone at gunpoint to speak a language is a Bad Idea(tm).

But (and yes, there is a but), that doesn't mean that all language laws are wrong, or that the idea can't be saved. Less stringent laws (where at least government buildings have both Spanish and Catalan) aren't evil. Also, the concept of having one language larger than another isn't horrible either, if implemented properly. Again, from the sounds of it, in Spain, they're being asshats. But, from a theoretical standpoint, it can be salvaged.
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Re: Spanish ban on Catalonia strikes again. Last time?

Postby Lucrece » Thu Feb 04, 2010 9:22 pm UTC

And I think we're in agreement that legislation that might help with maintaining heterogeneity are good, so long as it doesn't become a competition. Sorry if I missed your post, I was posting in between shifts, don't have that much time.
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Re:

Postby General_Norris » Thu Feb 04, 2010 9:23 pm UTC

Thanks for reading it again. I was surprised of your position because yes, it's worse than it seems at first glance.

Jessica wrote:Really, the big difference is that Spain managed to crush Catalan in the past, while Canada (and the English) were unable to crush the French.


There was no "crushing". The people themselves chose to speak Spanish because it was more useful. The Goverment, or "Spain" never . The only "crush" was during the Franco years, and it was not only Catalan being "crushed" here. By the 1600 the people referred to Spanish as their language. There was not any hostile takeover, nor wars. In fact, quite the opposive. Even when the print industry first appeared they printed more in Spanish than Catalan.

It makes sense. What is more useful, a redundant language to speak with your cousin or a language that lets you commerce with Castilla and the whole of America? When your economy is based on commerce it's obvious Spanish was the best option. Every centralicing efforts like the ones by Philips II who would inmerse himself in paperwork from every place of the country made the need for an unique language even more prevalent.


I think that one must first explore why the Catalan nationalism started to be. In the XIX century Spain was a decaying world-power with a way too big ego for his own good. The country was underdeveloped and the only industrial production started in Catalonia and in the Basque country with clothing and steel respectively.

The east coast of the peninsula has always relied on trade so they took the changes well, leading Spain in it. Barcelona saw the first steam machine, the first sewing machine and the first railroad of Spain. Catalonia was basically pulling the entire country out of it's misery and they didn't like that thus nationalistic sentiment started to born. It's mostly a burgoise movement against the xenophobe and old-fashioned Basque movement of the era.

Now, why did they took it so far? There was no way for them to enter in politics because the country was not under a real democracy. The Goverment was corrupt and sistematically falsified the results so only two parties were ever elected. This lasted for more than 60 years! So it makes sense to use nationalism as a façade.

This explains the whys of Catalan nationalism. In fact the businessman intervewed in the opening post talks about this "They are not protecting Catalan. The politicians are protecting themselves". The reason why the central Goverment lets this slip is because of bipartidism. The only big parties are the PP (Popular Party, right-centre) and the PSOE (Worker's party, left-centre). The nationalists give those parties the edge they need to win the elections and rule the country so the central goverment lets those kind of things slip.

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Re: Spanish ban on Catalonia strikes again. Last time?

Postby harpyblues » Fri Feb 05, 2010 5:26 am UTC

So, I've got a question. Is the language issue enforced in just Catalonia, or throughout Spain? And is there a similar level of that language protection for the Gallego speaking population and Euskera speakers?

If it's just Catalan that's getting government protection, then there's an issue.

And, like people have said before, I'm seeing A LOT of Northern Ireland/Rep of Ireland culture clash similarities as well. I think there might be a little government encouragement/enforcement in the South, but only for the news and for public works and stuff. And it's still kind of teetering on the brink.
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Re: Spanish ban on Catalonia strikes again. Last time?

Postby Aetius » Fri Feb 05, 2010 7:29 am UTC

It's important to remember that "preservation of culture" only benefits the wealthy tourist types who think it's quaint to visit on holiday and the elderly folks within that culture who are too stuck in their ways to adapt to change. Everyone else is unfairly hindered in their ability to adapt to the world they live in and choose the best lives for themselves.

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Re: Spanish ban on Catalonia strikes again. Last time?

Postby General_Norris » Fri Feb 05, 2010 9:13 am UTC

Aetius wrote:It's important to remember that "preservation of culture" only benefits the wealthy tourist types who think it's quaint to visit on holiday and the elderly folks within that culture who are too stuck in their ways to adapt to change. Everyone else is unfairly hindered in their ability to adapt to the world they live in and choose the best lives for themselves.


Exactly. All the time spent learning Catalan could have been used to learn English and produce a useful workforce and bring together the people of the world. This achieves nothing.

harpyblues wrote:So, I've got a question. Is the language issue enforced in just Catalonia, or throughout Spain?


Just in Catalonia. And in Valencia where they don't want to call it Catalan but "Valencian". It's a bit of "If you have that I will too!". Also in the Baleares, where they are also so dick about it that they refuse to call it Catalan. It's all politics.

And is there a similar level of that language protection for the Gallego speaking population and Euskera speakers?


Yes. However the situations differ. Keep into account that the strong nationalistic movement is the Basque one, because they have terrorists. They fuel the other two. Note that Basque is an invented language, it never existed, it's a mash-up of several local tongues and only recently has it been something coherent.

The Catalan seem to be more zealous and use more bullshit laws to force the language on the population than the other two. They have more political power.

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Re: Spanish ban on Catalonia strikes again. Last time?

Postby Owijad » Fri Feb 05, 2010 9:31 am UTC

gmalivuk wrote:And hopefully in doing so you can explain what it even means for something to be a "lame" "quasi"language...


I have no idea what it would mean for a language to be empirically demonstrated to be inferior to another, much less what objective criteria a person could apply to determine the lameness of... anything? In any case, it's a totally absurd, deeply tongue in cheek hyperbole of my genuine irritation that I can't justify the time I would like to spend becoming conversant in Catalan due to its low global usage.

So if you're willing to magnanimously put that aside, there is actually a rest-of-a-post, which is mostly just highly redundant with Norris' so it's really okay you guys didn't make it that far.
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Re: Spanish ban on Catalonia strikes again. Last time?

Postby Lucrece » Fri Feb 05, 2010 12:44 pm UTC

It was my impression that Basque's was an autoctonous culture. The local tongues have no ties with any other existing/previously existing language, pretty much like Hungarian and Finnish.
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Re: Spanish ban on Catalonia strikes again. Last time?

Postby gmalivuk » Fri Feb 05, 2010 4:04 pm UTC

Basque, like Finnish and Hungarian, is not Indo-European. However, Finnish and Hungarian are related to each other and to Estonian.
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Re: Spanish ban on Catalonia strikes again. Last time?

Postby Vaniver » Fri Feb 05, 2010 4:39 pm UTC

I know I'm being hypocritical about this, but I really believe that languages (and cultures) shouldn't be homogenized.
I enjoy being able to speak with the vast majority of people in the developed world. Why would you take that away from someone?
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Re: Spanish ban on Catalonia strikes again. Last time?

Postby Jessica » Fri Feb 05, 2010 4:46 pm UTC

Vaniver wrote:
I know I'm being hypocritical about this, but I really believe that languages (and cultures) shouldn't be homogenized.
I enjoy being able to speak with the vast majority of people in the developed world. Why would you take that away from someone?
I enjoy living in a world where difference is celebrated, not stamped out. why would you take that away from someone?
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Re:

Postby ianf » Fri Feb 05, 2010 4:52 pm UTC

Jessica wrote:It's funny, the only difference I see between Quebec and Catalan is that French lasted longer and didn't get stamped out. A lot of the french language laws in Quebec are there because of nationalist separatists. We have a national separatist party in Quebec (partie Quebequois) who's goal is to have Quebec leave Canada. There were terrorists (FLQ) who held people hostage in the 70s over this shit.

Really, the big difference is that Spain managed to crush Catalan in the past, while Canada (and the English) were unable to crush the French.


But the real difference, on a practical level, is that French is a widely-spoken language and Catalan is not. People educated in French in Canada have a lot of opportunities available to them without learning any other language. There are obviously French businesses and African businesses where they can be successful only using French. On the other hand, people who can only speak Catalan have few opportunities available to them outside Catalonia.

Putting all philosophical, historical, nationalistic and cultural issues to one side, the Catalan position damages the region's international links in a way that the Quebec position does not.

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Re: Re:

Postby Philwelch » Fri Feb 05, 2010 5:28 pm UTC

ianf wrote:[But the real difference, on a practical level, is that French is a widely-spoken language and Catalan is not. People educated in French in Canada have a lot of opportunities available to them without learning any other language. There are obviously French businesses and African businesses where they can be successful only using French. On the other hand, people who can only speak Catalan have few opportunities available to them outside Catalonia.

Putting all philosophical, historical, nationalistic and cultural issues to one side, the Catalan position damages the region's international links in a way that the Quebec position does not.


I'm still not totally convinced of this argument, considering that you could have made the exact same argument about the Irish language and yet Ireland, despite their language laws protecting the unique language and culture of the Gaeltacht, is a productive and globalized member of the world.
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Re: Spanish ban on Catalonia strikes again. Last time?

Postby General_Norris » Fri Feb 05, 2010 5:56 pm UTC

Jessica wrote:
Vaniver wrote:
I know I'm being hypocritical about this, but I really believe that languages (and cultures) shouldn't be homogenized.
I enjoy being able to speak with the vast majority of people in the developed world. Why would you take that away from someone?
I enjoy living in a world where difference is celebrated, not stamped out. why would you take that away from someone?


So you prefer that everyone talks different languages and feels the other is something alien? Not nice. A language doesn't make you "special".

The thing is, you do what you wish, learn Catalan if you want. But most won't and, in the end, you will be the last person on the planet speaking it. Unless you want to force me to talk a language I don't want to talk.

Philwelch wrote:I'm still not totally convinced of this argument, considering that you could have made the exact same argument about the Irish language and yet Ireland, despite their language laws protecting the unique language and culture of the Gaeltacht, is a productive and globalized member of the world.


The culptural level of Catalan students is far lower than those studying in the rest of Spain because of the language laws. Companies are now choosing to build their headquarters in Madrid instead of Barcelona because of those laws. And given how the goal is the EU, creating more division is not helping.

I mean, who is going to get the best job, the guy who knows both English and Spanish or the guy who knows Spanish and Catalan?

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Re: Spanish ban on Catalonia strikes again. Last time?

Postby Vaniver » Fri Feb 05, 2010 6:14 pm UTC

Jessica wrote:I enjoy living in a world where difference is celebrated, not stamped out. why would you take that away from someone?
One person wants to be different from the government; the government is fining him. You think that the person is doing the stamping here?

Choosing to switching cultures isn't stamping out difference- if anything, it's celebrating difference because the person decides to be different than what their family destined them to be.

As well, some differences should be celebrated, and others shouldn't. I got a quality tax-supported education; others didn't. Should I celebrate that? I don't have any deleterious genetic conditions that I know of; others do. Should I celebrate that?

Most importantly, in order to celebrate someone's differences I need to understand them. I can converse with Marxists about ideas and both of us can walk away richer; if I try to converse with someone who doesn't speak English about ideas, both of us walk away annoyed by the experience. How can I celebrate their unique contribution to the whole if they can't contribute?
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