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Norman Lowell
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« Reply #210 on: October 15, 2016, 10:07:30 AM »

http://www.timesofmalta.com/articles/view/20161012/editorial/Essence-of-university-education.627701


Wednesday, October 12, 2016, 06:40

Essence of university education

In most countries, university students are often the most vociferous protagonists in stimulating change in society. To do this, one must have a vision about the future. To convince other about our vision we need to communicate our ideas in an articulate and coherent way.
The new University rector, Alfred Vella, must have had this strategy in mind when welcoming the more than 12,000 students who have just started their academic year. Mastering the arts of speaking fluently, correctly and politely, not loudly, both in Maltese and English will really set one apart and cause people to listen, he told the students.

He went further and put his finger on one of the sore areas of university education. University education is not just about acquiring a high level of knowledge but then being unable to apply this knowledge to real life because of lack of skills, especially soft skills like good communication. Employers will be the first to admit that many of the graduates they employ lack even basic good written and spoken communication skills that make it difficult for them to become good team players in their organisation.

Proper debating etiquette in a civil society is not about rubbishing the ideas of those who do not agree with one’s views but about enlightening an audience with lucid ideas on the best way forward when trying to address difficult challenges either at national or at an organisational level.
Unfortunately, students have little to learn from the political class about how to communicate effectively. The current US presidential campaign, for instance, gives excellent debating examples on how not to communicate to convince people on the need of painful change to bring about social and economic prosperity.

Of course, good communication is also about substance. While politicians may love to turn the art of political communication to one of spin, university students must act as the conscience of society and bring up the thorny issues that this country needs to address to be fairer and just with as many people as possible. The big debates about issues that are of national interest should not be limited to Parliament or the political programmes on TV.
Most ordinary people yearn for a new refreshing way of discussing the big issues facing our society.

One hopes that this year and in years to come, university students debate the economic, environmental, religious and social issues that our society is facing and how these will shape our future as a nation. This is not just about issuing a press release or holding a press conference on a proposed development project, where arguments are often wrapped up in political mantras according to one political allegiances.

What do students think, for instance, about the overdevelopment in parts of the island? What are their views on how poverty can best be tackled in a society that is seeing a few families becoming richer, the majority of families working hard to remain where they were a decade ago and a significant number of families struggling on the poverty line? Do our students still believe in social solidarity?

Youth is often associated with a laid back lifestyle when one is expected to enjoy the good things of life. But it is also about dreaming the impossible dream to contribute to the success of our own lives and that of others.

University students are tomorrow’s leaders. We need to know what their vision is for Malta’s future.

-----------------

One of those exceedingly rare, very good Editorials from the zioToM.
Education stopped in 1971 when the Squalids took over - meta fgharu it-tappiri tad-dranagg.
Since then, we had a string of truly mediocre Education Ministers: with the very worst being Louis Galea - il ministru tat-kahhil u tibjid.

He turned our former schools into classrooms - oblivious to the contents being fed to our children.
Never used a European-derived word, just Arabic - it was revolting listening to him.
Thank god he never made it to PM - I know, Gonzi was not exactly much better, but...

Then came Il ministru tal-Hara: Carm Mifsud Bonnici - Ommi ma!
What a disaster our Education System has been, since 1971.
Evarist Bartolo is a Squalid Socialist, an Equalitarian and promotes Multiculturalism whenever he can - but he is the best Education Minister we have had.



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« Reply #211 on: November 02, 2016, 11:08:33 AM »

http://www.timesofmalta.com/articles/view/20161102/editorial/The-impact-of-foreign-workers.629751

Wednesday, November 2, 2016, 06:47
The impact of foreign workers

Malta’s labour landscape is changing faster than anyone could have possibly imagined up to only a few years ago. The influx of foreigners working here legally and illegally is making a significant impact on the social and economic life in the country. Mores and customs may take time to mesh into the fabric of Maltese society but the island is becoming more cosmopolitan than ever.

Step into a restaurant, a shop, go to the cinema or for a walk anywhere, the likelihood is that you hear more than one language being spoken next to you. In some places, one can easily get the feeling, even if for a brief period, that one is living in another country judging by the number of people speaking different languages. And it is not just tourists.

Is this good or bad considering the smallness of the country? How many more foreign workers can the country take without causing serious imbalances or lowering the quality of life?

Experience has shown that, while outwardly the Maltese regard themselves as hospitable, they can be selective, perhaps racist too. Although there have been cases that reflected lack of empathy with particular nationalities, it would seem the situation is gradually changing for the better.

Other than the social considerations that the influx of workers raises, there are other aspects of the enfolding development. According to the latest figures given by Education and Employment Minister Evarist Bartolo, as of last April, Malta had over 23,000 European Union nationals and 8,492 from other countries working here. This is not an insignificant number in a population of less than half a million.

But this tells only a part of the story for, at any time, there is also another significant number of foreigners working in Malta illegally. Between January 2012 and May last year, the number of irregular workers flagged by the employment watchdog was 11,996, including 4,294 foreigners. The number of foreigners working illegally is outnumbering that of Maltese nationals.

EU nationals top the list of foreigners working in Malta. This is obviously due to the fact that there is freedom of movement within the EU. Most interesting, though, is that the largest number of foreigners working in the country is of Italians. The minister gave the figure at 5,180. A study by an Italian researcher has found that lack of work and taxes were among the main reasons driving Italians, particularly in the south, to emigrate.
With Malta passing through an economic boom, it is not difficult to see why more and more foreigners are getting attracted to the island. In truth, though, employers in some sectors, particularly construction, retail, and tourism, are known to exploit foreign workers, paying them wages generally considered as inferior to normal rates.

The good thing about foreign labour is that, with the local unemployment standing at a very low level, the economy needs additional labour to keep growing. And, contrary to perception, foreign workers do not just take up menial jobs but they are today found in practically all sectors, including the financial services. They are making a significant contribution through their services and the payment of taxes.

A change in economic circumstances in Malta may, of course, put a stop to this sudden influx but current indications suggest it is not likely to fizzle out any time soon. Tackling the impact this is having on so many fronts of economic and social activity is not a light matter.

-----------------


This present "BOOM" is a temporary illusion - a flash in the pan that will not last.
As Il-Gahan Malti feverishly and frantically builds up more blocks, more garages, destroying Malta as we know it:
he will soon be left with a pile of rubble, of unfinished structures, of empty buildings.

Tourism will die out - who wants to visit an island chocked by a jungle of bricks?
Il Gahan will be left on his own with the shambles around him.
And all the European workers here: Russians, Croats, Serbs, Italians, Spanish will leave quietly back to their countries or greener pastures.
Of course, the Black primitive sub-humans will remain, keeping us company and sucking our Welfare System.

A bleak future lies ahead - it will not take long for the bubble to burst, for this house of cards to tumble down.
As PM Dr Alf Sant rightly said, years ago: "Malta is facing a structural collapse".
Our short sighted Politics since Independence will see to that.



See also: Tuesday, November 1, 2016, 20:30
Sliema residents to protest overdevelopment this Saturday
'Sliema is under siege as never before', says FAA


http://www.timesofmalta.com/articles/view/20161101/local/sliema-residents-to-protest-overdevelopment-this-saturday.629763


----------------


00411
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« Last Edit: November 02, 2016, 11:12:01 AM by IMPERIUM » Report to moderator   Logged
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« Reply #212 on: January 10, 2017, 10:18:09 AM »

http://www.timesofmalta.com/articles/view/20170109/opinion/word-of-2017-immigration.636025


Monday, January 9, 2017, 06:48 by Joe Zammit-Lucia
Word of 2017: immigration


We have started a new year. What will be the words that will dominate 2017?
I thought I would start with ‘immigration’.
Three years ago, I wrote an article titled ‘Will immigration be the EU’s death knell?’ Things have moved on since then, and immigration has indeed become one of the issues straining the EU, though not quite to breaking point – yet.
Unfortunately, as with so many debates on difficult but important issues, this one has been reduced to two sides of an argument spitting sound bites at each other without much enlightenment emerging. Those who want to stop immigration and the flow of refugees make a direct link between immigration, security, competition for jobs and, they claim, a complete breakdown of the social order. Those who consider themselves liberal respond with cries of racism and xenophobia. None of this gets us anywhere.

The first thing to recognise is that how to deal with immigration and refugee flow is one of the most difficult political issues we are all facing. There are no easy answers. Those who call for totally closed borders are just as foolish as those who call for totally open ones. So, let us examine the issues.
Yes, it is likely that among the more than a million refugees that have entered the EU, a very few will have bad intent. They are radical fundamentalists who will attempt terrorist acts and will try to radicalise others. And sometimes they will succeed. But crime is a fact of life. The security services will do their best, but they cannot prevent every crime.

Should we allow new immigrant communities in our societies to opt out of liberal values and rights that have been hard fought for over the decades?
Yet pretending that the solution is to build a fortress Europe is neither practicable nor reasonable.
It’s the equivalent of setting a curfew for all citizens after 6pm in order to prevent nighttime crime. Or to stop everyone from driving to prevent drink-driving. That’s not how free societies work.
As for the jobs argument, this is more difficult. Economists argue that immigration is a net positive for most European economies that must cope with an ageing population, lack of labour and skills and a native workforce that considers some types of jobs to be below them. Yet it is also true that some employers use immigrant labour to keep down wages and perpetuate poor working conditions.

 The answer does not lie in shutting down immigration. It lies in better regulation (and enforcement) of conditions of work and better skills building through our education system.
The greatest challenge that mass immigration poses is to social cohesion. And it is here that those who think of themselves as liberal need to pause and think.

The reality is that no country that has had significant levels of immigration from fundamentally different cultures has managed to achieve effective integration. Ghettoisation is rampant. Humans are inherently tribal and form communities of like people.

True and comprehensive integration has not been achieved, except at the margins.
We also need to consider what it means to defend our liberal democratic values. Does it mean accepting everyone with open arms, even when newly formed communities continue to reject the fundamental tenets on which our liberal democracies are based?

Should we allow new immigrant communities in our societies to opt out of liberal values and rights that have been hard fought for over the decades: equal rights for women, universal education, acceptance of sexual preferences, the primacy of secular law enacted by elected governments over religious law and so forth? Or does being liberal mean defending those values and insisting that anyone who lives in our society needs to accept them and live by them?

Mass immigration and refugee flow are two of the biggest challenges we are facing. Those on both sides of the argument who pretend there are easy answers and whose only response is to hurl insults at those who take an opposite view do none of us any favours.

It is time that we had a mature debate where the advantages, disadvantages and moral imperatives surrounding people flows are discussed. Where the difficult issues are faced rather than ducked by pretending that they don’t exist. Nobody has ready-made answers. But I hope that in 2017, ‘immigration’ becomes a word around which we can start to have a serious and honest conversation and move away from the banality of slogans and sound bites – whichever side of the argument they come from.
Joe Zammit-Lucia is a trustee of radix.org.uk, a think tank for the radical centre, and co-author of The Death of Liberal Democracy?

-----------------


A good article, well worded that as usual asks many questions - but offers no answers.
"Yet pretending that the solution is to build a fortress Europe is neither practicable nor reasonable." -
Why not? Only Political Will is lacking. The Will to shoot and drown the boats as fast as they try to come in. 

It is only the Jews who dominate the Media and The Jesus Poison that hold us back.
And Liberalism is the product of both - Jewish perfidy and the sublimation of the Jesus Poison into Politics.
Once We form a Radical Right Group, Nova Europa in Brussels, We will attack both these pernicious and deadly cancers - and restore Europe's sanity.



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« Reply #213 on: January 19, 2017, 04:03:23 PM »

http://www.timesofmalta.com/articles/view/20170119/letters/Blinkered-youth.636911


Thursday, January 19, 2017, 06:16 by Michael Frank Owen, Żejtun

Blinkered youth

Neo-Nazism is resurfacing across Europe.
In Britain, we see Polish EU citizens spat at and told to go home. Across Europe the tide of intolerance grows as ‘populism’ takes its grip. Now what is this ‘populism’? A resurrection of the same mass discontent that nurtured Fascism in the 1930s. Some say the rise of the great unwashed.
Whatever. It is becoming the triumph of ignorance over civilisation.
In Malta, I worry that young impressionable people do not see or understand the history of the Third Reich. That the trials and tribulations of the wartime Maltese people have become things of very distant memory.
The loss of the historical perspective invites the likes of David Irving to enter this void and reinvent history. To deny the holocaust. So easy, then, to suggest that the Malta war years must be an imaginary moment. A seismic event. Never man made.
So the blinded will lead those that cannot see into darkening worlds of untruth.
To counter these evils, I suggest all Maltese students are given the time to see films of the past. Debates in the classroom can lead to a greater enlightenment.
We should un-blinker the young before they fail to see any longer the woods from the trees. If we leave them blinkered there will arise that solitary one-eyed man who, with no other asset, will take them to his accursed heart. Blind them further with lies and deceit. Create a wild and unruly band of brothers whose intent will be to smother civilisation. Church and State and all else.
That is starting across Europe as I write and it will not easily go away.

---------------


The usual blinkered, useful idiot (Reader's Digest veneer of Education).

---

A good reply from Mr Charles W. Sammut


Mr Owen, I presume you also believe that the Nazis washed with soap made from gassed Jews and read books by the light from human skin lampshades. It's not a case of reinventing history, it is a case of telling it as it is and not as the victors would have us believe. Millions of people perished during WWII, including many Jews. But it is only the Jews that have been milking it for all it's worth three generations down the line. Everybody else has moved on.

---

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« Reply #214 on: February 12, 2017, 12:15:16 PM »

http://www.vivamalta.net/VMforum/index.php?topic=11267.new#new


Sunday, February 12, 2017, 00:01 by Peter Cassar Torreggiani, Balzan

Stick together in face of challenges

Just as St Paul did during his sea journey, Malta can warn, encourage, inspire and act. Photo: Chris Sant Fournier
Just as St Paul did during his sea journey, Malta can warn, encourage, inspire and act. Photo: Chris Sant Fournier
The world is heading into a storm, like the ship carrying St Paul to Rome, shipwrecked on our shores two millennia ago. The feature in The Sunday of Malta last week about the captain of that vessel acting to avoid the worst, was fascinating. It reminded me of an article by a late Franciscan theological scholar from Burmarrad, Fr Joseph, tracing how the Apostle Paul gently took up the leading role. Equally amazing is the recent discovery of the ship’s four-ton anchor off Qawra.
This is what Malta can help do in the heart of the perfect storm building up around us: to warn, to encourage, to inspire and to act. We can find the way to lead man in preoccupying matters like Brexit, ‘Trumpanantics’, monetarism, cultural wars, migration, jihad terrorism, world development, and nuclear dangers in the following simple but profound advice: “Hold together, work for progress, love God in all things”.
This was the message that the good Pope St John XXIII beamed by radio directly to the enormous crowd gathered together on the Granaries to remember the 19th centenary commemoration of the shipwreck in 1960.
It is really all about justice, peace and grace in the Holy Spirit, as it was in the blessing and breaking of bread when Paul calmed the 275 people aboard with the revelation that none would perish, but that they had to “come to an island”.
It is really in this same blessing and sharing that Malta can today best offer Europe, and the indeed the world, to find the way to the global civilisation of love. Faith in Christ with Paul militates in personal love to improve culture today, even in matters of money and sexuality.
Paul evidently shared in the life of the Trinity through Christ: today it is in a deepening of the theology of the Trinity from our personal interactivity, including digitisation, that faithful experimentation in our heart through the dialogue of civilisations will help man everywhere, not just the post-Christians in Europe and America, to find better answers to current human matters such as divorce and all attendant issues.
From our experiences of dialogue we can help mankind discover the true nature of the family, an aptitude to include everyone in economic and social progress, peace and prosperity around the shores of the Mediterranean, and most assuredly not excluding guaranteeing the achievement of the UN goal of ending world hunger by 2030.


------------------


JA MNEJJEK!


00502
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