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Postby Episcopus » Mon Oct 20, 2003 7:26 pm

a------
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Re: In the next 40 minutes

Postby Lex » Mon Oct 20, 2003 7:55 pm

Episcopus wrote:And if you be an American without BBC permit please that I mock the retardation and inferiority of your television programming! Vos sugitis!


And please permit me to mock you filthy English Kenigghits for having to pay the government for the privilege of owning a television set! Now go away, or I shall taunt you a second time! :wink:
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Postby Episcopus » Mon Oct 20, 2003 9:30 pm

:shock:
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Postby Emma_85 » Mon Oct 20, 2003 9:38 pm

:cry:
The BBC scramble their programme, can't watch it if you live on the continent. Only get BBC World, which is a news channel. But I will get to see that programme sometime, because the BBC sells it's productions to the German TV stations (probably sell this programme to ZDF), and then I'll watch the German translation.
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Postby benissimus » Wed Oct 22, 2003 9:03 am

Episcopus wrote::shock: :shock: :shock:

Is it really that he begins to debate on governments whilst being American?


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Postby benissimus » Wed Oct 22, 2003 9:04 am

By the way, your patronizing is a great source of your rambunctiously rampant ignorance t.t
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Postby Episcopus » Wed Oct 22, 2003 1:57 pm

You
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Postby Lex » Wed Oct 22, 2003 2:36 pm

Episcopus wrote:All I am saying, do you really think American government is better than the British? I mean, the British government is unfair in so many ways and sucks but not as much as yours.


That depends on your political leanings, I suppose. Me, I'm very libertarian (in the American sense of the word, which essentially means "classical liberal", since crypto-socialists have ripped off the word "liberal" here). I certainly don't care much for America's foreign policy recently, but I don't believe we've screwed ourselves up internally with socialist nonsense quite as badly as the British have. Not yet, at any rate. Classics programs on BBC are a case in point. You have nationalized the TV industry, which can quite easily be made to function in the private sector. And classics programs paid by taxes are, let's face it, essentially welfare for the rich.
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Postby benissimus » Thu Oct 23, 2003 12:47 am

It's not just that. Episcopus, you think that anyone IN America cannot possibly have any opinions worth listening to. Even if our government is corrupt, which I certainly do not believe to be as true as you do; that doesn't mean that all of the people under it are totally ignorant. The really odd thing is that you managed to very briefly turn a discussion about a Classics television program (which you started yourself) into a very bizarre political debate.
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Postby phil » Thu Oct 23, 2003 1:17 am

Lex wrote:Classics programs on BBC are a case in point. You have nationalized the TV industry, which can quite easily be made to function in the private sector. And classics programs paid by taxes are, let's face it, essentially welfare for the rich.


I am jealousissimus (guess which chapter in Wheelock I'm up to) of the TV listings I see on the BBC website. If that is what a nationalised TV service can do, then I'm all for it. We'll hopefully get that BBC series on NZ screens - probably not for a year or two, and then it'll be cut down to 40 mins to fit the 1 hour format, then lacerated with ads.

We used to have state-run TV, which was paid for by licence fees, then some years ago it was all sold to the private sector. That sector sure likes lots of ads and crap programmes doesn't it? Anything which doesn't rate doesn't get shown. And programmes such as those that the beeb produce would simply never cover their costs in a commercial market.

I believe that in the US some high quality programmes are made by PBS for viewing niches. That would be funded from...oh taxes. See? State funded TV is a great way for non-mainstream programmes to be made.

(Argue all you like about politics, but don't mess with Phil's TV!)
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Postby bingley » Thu Oct 23, 2003 2:59 am

Point of information, Mr. Chairman:

You have nationalized the TV industry, which can quite easily be made to function in the private sector.


Actually, TV was not nationalised. The BBC has always been funded (but not, in theory and pretty largely in practice despite some recent hiccups, controlled) by the govt. Commercial TV came later.
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Postby Emma_85 » Thu Oct 23, 2003 1:49 pm

I can see that at least in politics Lex and I will probably never get on...

Anyway,... until I read this post just then, I had no idea that America didn't have TV license fees or national TV stations.
I honestly hope that they never privatise the television here. What is needed though is something similar to the German system, where you have loads of free TV stations (but with adverts to pay for their costs) as well as the BBC. I mean, who can afford Sky?
I don't watch much TV anymore, because the adverts really annoy me, so I hire the DVD or only watch films on the national channels that don't interrupt their films and the BBC documentaries with adverts.
Well, ok, sometimes I watch Simpsons and Futurama on the private channels :wink: .
Something else I don't like about them being private is that I think the channels are much more independent when they aren't owned by one person. There was some news about Murdoch that Sky News (owned by him) never reported. If it weren't for the BBC world service...

And Lex, you don't really think everyone here (in Germany) pays the TV and radio license fees? Pensioners and students don't have to and most other people just don't (specially the radio ones).

My favourite channel is SWR3, the local (and also biggest) radio station in Germany, no adverts, great music and extremly good news and science reports. After Sky News, CNN, Pro 7 and N24 (Pro 7 and N24 were then both owned by Kirch, the German equivalent of Murdoch) started to really annoy me during the Iraq war I only listened and believed SWR3. The other German channels were much too anti American propaganda, and well CNN... lol all the things they just didn't report!
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Postby Lex » Thu Oct 23, 2003 3:34 pm

phil wrote:I believe that in the US some high quality programmes are made by PBS for viewing niches. That would be funded from...oh taxes.


I don't much care for PBS either, of course.

phil wrote:See? State funded TV is a great way for non-mainstream programmes to be made.


Translation: State-funded TV is a great way to force the majority to pay for programs that only a minority want to watch.

And, those people are usually well above the average income. As I said before, it's welfare for the rich. I'm sure people intelligent enough to appreciate the classics could think of ways to sponsor high quality programming without ripping off the majority, if they wished to.
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Postby Lex » Thu Oct 23, 2003 3:36 pm

bingley wrote:Actually, TV was not nationalised.


Perhaps "nationalized" was the wrong word.
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Postby Lex » Thu Oct 23, 2003 4:04 pm

Emma_85 wrote:I can see that at least in politics Lex and I will probably never get on...


"Government is not reason; it is not eloquence; it is force. Like fire, it is a dangerous servant and a fearful master."

That being the case, everything that can be done privately, without force, should be.

Emma_85 wrote:Anyway,... until I read this post just then, I had no idea that America didn't have TV license fees or national TV stations.


Well, as was pointed out earlier, we do have PBS, but it's not really a major player in the way the BBC is.

Emma_85 wrote:I honestly hope that they never privatise the television here. What is needed though is something similar to the German system, where you have loads of free TV stations (but with adverts to pay for their costs) as well as the BBC. I mean, who can afford Sky? I don't watch much TV anymore, because the adverts really annoy me, so I hire the DVD or only watch films on the national channels that don't interrupt their films and the BBC documentaries with adverts.


It used to be that people sold out their freedom for (perceived) security. Nowadays, they do it for something as trivial as avoiding ads on TV. :cry:

Emma_85 wrote:Something else I don't like about them being private is that I think the channels are much more independent when they aren't owned by one person.


Let me get this straight. You think that media owned and operated by a government is more independent than privately owned media??? :shock:

Emma_85 wrote:And Lex, you don't really think everyone here (in Germany) pays the TV and radio license fees? Pensioners and students don't have to and most other people just don't (specially the radio ones).


Nor should they.

Emma_85 wrote:and well CNN... lol all the things they just didn't report!


I'm sure the Beeb never fails to report anything that would give the British government a bad name. :roll:
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Postby Lex » Thu Oct 23, 2003 4:06 pm

benissimus wrote:The really odd thing is that you managed to very briefly turn a discussion about a Classics television program (which you started yourself) into a very bizarre political debate.


I have to take credit for that, I'm afraid. Episcopus supplied the initial motivation, but I started the debate. But then again, I like bizarre political debates! :wink:
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Postby Emma_85 » Fri Oct 24, 2003 6:05 pm

It used to be that people sold out their freedom for (perceived) security. Nowadays, they do it for something as trivial as avoiding ads on TV.


Well you don't have to watch TV, if you don't want to. There's millions of other things you could be doing, such as reading books (which doesn't cost you anything if you get them at the library) or spend the TV license money on getting an internet connection, or you could spend that money at the pub...
The money is used in many different ways. Here in Germany it's a bit stupid, but every state has it's own local TV station (not necessary I think), but people like to be informed about things happening locally. Things that directly affect them may not make it to the national news, but would certainly make it to regional news and so the people here are very well informed about what's happening at the state parliament.

Personally I just enjoy all the free rock concerts (where they don't advertise either, or make money on drinks or anything like that), where groups such as Die Toten Hosen, Cosmo Klein, Titiano Ferro, John Mayor, Daniel Bedingfield, Patrice, Skin, Itchycoo, Reamon, Sonique, Ricky Martin and Mel C perform (those are just a few that performed recently). I could never afford to go to a Ricky Martin or Mel C concert!

Let me get this straight. You think that media owned and operated by a government is more independent than privately owned media???


The government does not own these channels. If they were it would indeed be terrible, but they don't, and often it's these channels that attack the government more than any of the private ones. Probably because they are more political than the private ones.
And why would I trust the information of the private ones more? They are owned by big media bosses.

I'm sure the Beeb never fails to report anything that would give the British government a bad name.


I'm not too sure what you mean here, but the BBC is not owned by the current labour government and in the past year has done nothing but criticise it and try to make it look bad. They have a hate - hate relationship.

Also these channels are not just like for the rich elite of the country. I really think you need to take a look at the TV times for Brittan. You might also enjoy SWR3, even though it is in German, the music isn't. I know you can listen to it in the US, or on the Internet, totally free, and no ads.
www.swr3.de
(well, I don't know what it's like at the time of day you would listen to it, though :P )

http://www.swr3.de/fun/comix/comix.php?seite=0&ugid=253

Just some of the many moments in which they make fun of the Bundeskanzler (Gerd Schröder) and the president of B.-W. Erwin Teufel.
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Postby Lex » Fri Oct 24, 2003 6:43 pm

Emma,

You do not seem to understand my fundamental objection to government-funded TV (or damn near anything else that is funded by tax money). My objection is moral, so I don't really care if the government funded stations have better programming or even better reporting, assuming that this were true.

Allow me to ask a question; do you believe that theft is morally wrong?
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Postby bingley » Sat Oct 25, 2003 12:58 am

I think it comes down in part to different visions of what TV is for. In America, as far as I can make out and I'm open to correction from actual Americans, TV is seen purely as a commercial money-making device, while in the UK and Europe it is also seen as an educational device, and so just as national and local govts. support education and libraries (not as well as they should perhaps but that's a different argument) they also support TV. Certainly you could argue that there are programmes which can and should be made by the commercial sector rather than the public sector, but some programmes which are part of the educational mission of TV would not find commercial backing.
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Postby benissimus » Sat Oct 25, 2003 1:05 am

Yep, as far as I'm concerned it's just entertainment.
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Postby Emma_85 » Sat Oct 25, 2003 9:59 am

Lex, do you think taxes are theft, then?
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Postby Episcopus » Sat Oct 25, 2003 10:30 am

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Postby Emma_85 » Sat Oct 25, 2003 11:03 am

I must agree with Episcopus here. From everything I've heared and read America does seem to be very corrupt - but (the but is very important), only from our point of view, as all the actions we thing are corrupt are in fact legal and normal in America. So when we hear about the parliament in Texas, we're shocked, and maybe forget that what they do there is actually legal, because here it would not be.
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Postby Lex » Sat Oct 25, 2003 5:46 pm

Emma_85 wrote:Lex, do you think taxes are theft, then?


In a word, yes.

Think about it for a second. You must either pay taxes, or you get thrown in jail (or at least run the risk of that happening), or perhaps your wages will be "garnished" (taxes plus penalties will be deducted from your pay by your employer) if you do not happen to be self-employed. You don't really have a choice in the matter. How is this morally distinguishable from extortion?
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Postby Lex » Sat Oct 25, 2003 5:54 pm

bingley wrote:I think it comes down in part to different visions of what TV is for.


No, it comes down to a different vision of what government is for.

(Granted, my view on this is more extreme than that of the average American, by far. But in my experience, Europeans tend to be more likely than Americans to think that goverment can and should solve all "problems" that the market doesn't.)

bingley wrote:Certainly you could argue that there are programmes which can and should be made by the commercial sector rather than the public sector, but some programmes which are part of the educational mission of TV would not find commercial backing.


Which, from an economic point of view, would tend to indicate that their is little demand for such programming. Do we really need the nanny state to give grown adults what's good for them, whether they want it or not?
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Postby Lex » Sat Oct 25, 2003 5:57 pm

Episcopus wrote:
benissimus wrote:Even if our government is corrupt, which I certainly do not believe to be as true as you do


Watch a movie or read a book mate on the subject...or just know about it.
I can't understand, why you say, your government is not corrupt...


I actually agree with Episcopus here. I also think the American government is corrupt. But I also think the European governments (and upcoming government, singular, the EU) are just as corrupt. They're just not as powerful, and therefore not able to do as much damage.
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Postby Lex » Sat Oct 25, 2003 6:05 pm

Emma_85 wrote:I must agree with Episcopus here. From everything I've heared and read America does seem to be very corrupt


Can you give more concrete examples?

Emma_85 wrote:but (the but is very important), only from our point of view, as all the actions we thing are corrupt are in fact legal and normal in America. So when we hear about the parliament in Texas, we're shocked, and maybe forget that what they do there is actually legal, because here it would not be.


The parliament in Texas? I wasn't aware that Texas had a parliament, unless George Clinton and his band happened to be playing there recently. To what exactly are you referring?
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Postby Emma_85 » Sat Oct 25, 2003 6:36 pm

The legal corruption I'm talking about there is all the 'donations' (that would be called bribes here) that the ministers and parties receive. I believe a new law following the 2000 elections was passed, though, limiting that. They used to get unlimited and unregulated amounts of money from people (from the industry mainly) to spend on their election campaigns and for the party.
In Texas they used to give out the bribes inside the house of parliament just before the ministers voted on certain laws, but that looked bad, so it was banned to do it inside just before the votes, but the giving of these donations was not banned, and still continued to happen and still continued to affect the decisions of the ministers and the governor.

Here something like that is unthinkable as politicians should not be puppets of the industry. There was a huge scandal in Germany not too long ago, involving sums any American politician would probably laugh about.

Donations are allowed here, too, only that anything over a certain amount of money (5 000 Euros?????) has to be put on a big public list. And if you have say the BASF donating 1 million to the government party, and a week later a law to cut CO2 emissions is taken back... well, the media would be in an uproar. Just so's you know, the election campaigns are funded by taxes and small donations (but are nowhere near as costly as they are in America, due to the fact that the parties don't have much money). Each party gets a certain amount of money per vote cast in their favour in the last election. Some small parties just rely on their politicians and hardly do any elections campaigning (such as Bündnis 90 die Grünen, who are in gov. right now in Germany).
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Postby Emma_85 » Sat Oct 25, 2003 6:49 pm

Replying to the fact that you think the EU government is corrupt:
It certainly is! Even more so than the US one for sure. But it doesn't have much power yet; the power to govern each country still lies with the national government. I hope that as the EU parliament gains importance, the media might start to report on it and it's ministers (it doesn't at the moment, most people have no idea where it is even). As soon as the politicians there feel the need to change they will. Right now they don't have to worry about elections at all. People just go and vote for someone, even though they have no idea, who that person is or what they did last year. They just know which party he belongs to. No politician has to fear his voters may know about how all the work in his office is done by his family and friends and how he wastes government money and accepts bribes and so on...


In a word, yes.

Think about it for a second. You must either pay taxes, or you get thrown in jail (or at least run the risk of that happening), or perhaps your wages will be "garnished" (taxes plus penalties will be deducted from your pay by your employer) if you do not happen to be self-employed. You don't really have a choice in the matter. How is this morally distinguishable from extortion?


Ah... well, ok. Dunno what to say to that, really. The money is not stolen from you; it's used for your benefit.
Thing is you're not on your own. You live in a state, which does everything for you. It organises things, has law and order, protects your health (police, fire department and hospitals/ doctors are paid for with taxes), maintains the roads you use etc. (Edit: uh... someone just reminded me that health is not free in America).
If you want to live somewhere, where you're money is not used to help the state and yourself, then go and live in some place in Somalia and see if the place is better.
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Postby Odysseus » Sun Oct 26, 2003 12:19 pm

phil wrote:
Lex wrote:Classics programs on BBC are a case in point. You have nationalized the TV industry, which can quite easily be made to function in the private sector. And classics programs paid by taxes are, let's face it, essentially welfare for the rich.


I am jealousissimus (guess which chapter in Wheelock I'm up to) of the TV listings I see on the BBC website. If that is what a nationalised TV service can do, then I'm all for it. We'll hopefully get that BBC series on NZ screens - probably not for a year or two, and then it'll be cut down to 40 mins to fit the 1 hour format, then lacerated with ads.

We used to have state-run TV, which was paid for by licence fees, then some years ago it was all sold to the private sector. That sector sure likes lots of ads and crap programmes doesn't it? Anything which doesn't rate doesn't get shown. And programmes such as those that the beeb produce would simply never cover their costs in a commercial market.

I believe that in the US some high quality programmes are made by PBS for viewing niches. That would be funded from...oh taxes. See? State funded TV is a great way for non-mainstream programmes to be made.

(Argue all you like about politics, but don't mess with Phil's TV!)


salve Phil. Have you thought about doing some Latin at Victoria University? That's how I started my Latin. in ICQ dicemus.
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Postby Episcopus » Sun Oct 26, 2003 1:11 pm

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Postby Emma_85 » Sun Oct 26, 2003 3:10 pm

The school I went to England was different, all the books (and the writing paper) was free. Here in the MSS you have to buy all your books, too. It used to cost about 400 Euros a year for my mum to buy all the books, eventhough we tried to get most of them second hand. And now it would be even more expensive as school books have doubled in price since 2000, but luckily most teachers just don't bother with books anymore, they know how expensive it can be (if you can't afford them you get the books for free of course, but it's still very expensive for everyone else).

But would you like to live in a state without roads or police or fire service or laws ....? Taxes aren't theft, because they're used to help you (or the poor guys who need their fags :wink: ).
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Postby Lex » Mon Oct 27, 2003 1:32 pm

Episcopus wrote:Yes Taxes SUCK! Theft yes. In the U.K healthcare is payed for by taxes but to avoid a 6 month + waiting time one must go private. It is insane.


Thank you. I was going to say something about how bad nationalized health care can get, but you beat me to it.

Episcopus wrote:Schools are schnitt and every thing from exercise books and textbooks must be bought by the student and free food is given to the nuts who cause nothing but trouble and spend all their benefits on cigarettes. It is theft from the good people.


Yes, it is. Apply this same logic to tax-supported classical programs on TV. This is a product that very few people want, but the government has decided that it is good for you, so it is made anyway. If most people really wanted it, private TV companies would gladly make such programs and reap the profits.
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Postby Lex » Mon Oct 27, 2003 2:07 pm

Emma_85 wrote:But would you like to live in a state without roads or police or fire service or laws ....?


No, I would not. That's not my point.

Emma_85 wrote:Taxes aren't theft, because they're used to help you


To bring this topic back to classical languages for a second, if only tangentially, the Latin term that best describes the above quote is non sequitur. It does not follow from the fact that the money is going to be used to help me, that the taking of the money was not theft. Any involuntary taking of money from people is theft, whatever the subsequent use of that money. Let's be brutally honest about that, or we slip-slide into an Orwellian doubletalk world where "Theft is Voluntary", and soon, of course, "Slavery is Freedom". I would think a student of classical languages would have more respect for precision in language than that.

You point out above that taxes are used to pay for roads, police, fire services, etc. That's a good point. Most people, including me, appreciate those services and would not want to do without them. But that doesn't change the fact that they are paid for using funds, some of which are stolen. We must be honest about that to ourselves, and only resort to taxation (theft) when the services that it pays for are absolutely essential, and that the market cannot possibly provide. For example, roads, law and law enforcement, and national defense and diplomacy arguably fall into that category. Ricky Martin concerts and advert-free classical programmes on the telly most definitely do not.

And note that what many people think simply must be supplied by the government is really better off provided through private means. Health care is a case in point. In Canada, where they have socialized medicine, guess where rich people go who need to have an operation immediately? To the US. Why? Because, despite its problems, the private healh care system in the US provides better care than the Canadian socialist system does, and without a 6 month wait. This goes to show that the list of services that simply must be provided by the government is actually a lot shorter than most people think.
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Postby bingley » Mon Oct 27, 2003 3:06 pm

Without the National Health Service in England I would never have existed. My parents were quite poor and my mother developed all sorts of complications while she was pregnant. They would not have been able to afford to pay for the appropriate treatment. I would certainly have died, she would have probably died. You may find that an acceptable state of affairs, Lex, I do not.
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Postby Lex » Mon Oct 27, 2003 3:33 pm

bingley wrote:Without the National Health Service in England I would never have existed. My parents were quite poor and my mother developed all sorts of complications while she was pregnant. They would not have been able to afford to pay for the appropriate treatment. I would certainly have died, she would have probably died. You may find that an acceptable state of affairs, Lex, I do not.


Has it never occurred to you that without socialism ruining the British economy, your parents wouldn't have been so poor, and would have been able to afford reasonable health insurance without taking the money from other peoples' pockets? Has it never occurred to you that without socialism killing the spirit of true charity, even if your parents were still so poor that they couldn't have afforded it, it would have been provided voluntarily by those more fortunate?
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Postby Emma_85 » Mon Oct 27, 2003 6:45 pm

Oh, come off it Lex! Think of the Americans... so many of them live in poverty and there are some really sad stories. Some singer my dad really liked listening to died, because she couldn't afford the regular checkups after a cancer operation. They said, because she was still young the cancer probably wouldn't come back, but she died a few years later from an undetected cancer. If she had been living in a country with free health care system, she would have gone to the doctor.
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Postby Episcopus » Mon Oct 27, 2003 6:47 pm

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Postby Episcopus » Mon Oct 27, 2003 6:52 pm

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Postby Emma_85 » Mon Oct 27, 2003 7:00 pm

Believe it or not Episcopus a country exists in which the police are even worse: Germany.
A bunch of idiots, who do nothing at all. They go collect money for speeding, but fail to do anything against crime. When parts of our car were stolen by the Mafia (everyone knows who's behind the thefts, except it seems the police, even if you shout it at them), all they did was fill out a form, so we could claim the money for the new parts off the insurance company. They didn't want to come out to look at the car, we had to take it to them, they weren't interested in it one bit. No photos, no fingerprints, nothing.
A friend of mine works in the anti mafia department of the city council and says the same - the police are just useless here.
They don't seem to be good at solving murder cases here either... like all they can do is make sure the body's carried away and then to pretend they're working on the case...
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