Euro confusion

nic   Friday, October 29, 2004, 06:54 GMT
European community is rubbish, just because it's only about money, there is nothing social in their politic. Believe me, those who are not in the community have nothing to loose. When you are in, your country must respect laws which jhas benn decided not by a few politics but by a few industrials.
Damian   Friday, October 29, 2004, 07:49 GMT
Today is Constitution signing day or something. At least Rocco has hit the rocks ;-)

I still think there should be a European Language referendum. If I ever vote I will vote.....erm, not sure...not English anyway. I think it should be a Continental language to be really democratic.
nic   Friday, October 29, 2004, 07:51 GMT

Even if you choose a continental language, which one? So it won't be democratic.
Jordi   Friday, October 29, 2004, 08:39 GMT
I would make the least spoken Official language of Europe the 1st Official one. Since there are only about 50.000 native home Irish speakers my choice is quite clear. All the Irish would feel really proud of their language again and they would speak it to their children. All the millions of Irish American would be the first to learn Irish to travel and trade with Europe and the rest would follow. You could, of course, go to Brussels, Rome, Berlin or Madrid and speak Irish. Last but not least, it would make thousands of English citizens (the ones from England) learn the language they helped to destroy for centuries. I would be willing to learn Irish myself and being a Romance language speaker that wouldn't be easy but it would be so fair.
nic   Friday, October 29, 2004, 09:03 GMT

I suppose you mean "celtic irish", why not the scottish, they musn't be a lot to speak their own language today.
Mi5 Mick   Friday, October 29, 2004, 10:30 GMT
Then why not make it Romany? Or isn't it offical?

It has possibly the fewest number of speakers in Europe, and the Gypsies were one of the most persecuted peoples of Europe. By choosing Romany, you could ensure true impartiality by not singling out one country (like England).
Lavoisel   Friday, October 29, 2004, 10:45 GMT
Jordi, you know it's a very, very good idea you had. Ireland is a highly motivated E.U. member, contrary to the U.K. and it respects E.U. rules, contrary to France and Germany. Plus, it's a bit like David against Goliath: logically, David should win. :-)
nic   Friday, October 29, 2004, 11:20 GMT
yes but, there is another problem, that's on your honour to choose a language which is spoken by few people. But it will only represent celtic cultures and not latin, slavic, gypsies ones, and what about hebrew which is spoken inb Poland and some other
East european countries. It will only represent some cultures from isles.
Easterner   Friday, October 29, 2004, 11:21 GMT
Jordi said: >>I would make the least spoken Official language of Europe the 1st Official one. Since there are only about 50.000 native home Irish speakers my choice is quite clear.<<

How about choosing the widest-spoken non-official language as well? I think that would be Catalan, wouldn't it? That would be at least a symbolic gesture to make minority languages also represented (by the way Catalan is spoken by more speakers than some official EU languages, though I don't know the exact number of speakers). I wonder how the French would react to such a proposal...

By the way, I think learning Irish Gaelic would not be an easy task to anyone, given its idiomatic structure and rich vocabulary, but as I know, of all European language groups it is closest to Romance languages .
Easterner   Friday, October 29, 2004, 11:22 GMT
By the way, is Irish Gaelic an official language in the EU? I thought it was official in Ireland only.
Jordi   Friday, October 29, 2004, 12:01 GMT
On behalf of my language I would like to thank Easterner. Catalan is a co-official language in Spain in a territory of 11 million people. 8 million speak the language fluently -according to the 2001 census- and over 90% of the population has some knowledge or understand the language. It would be the 7th most spoken language in the EU, far above other "State" languages. The French Government (not the French people) has done all that is possible to stop Catalan being official in Europe since the Spanish Government favours thism due to political pressure from 40% of the population in Spain living in bilingual areas (Catalan Countries, Basque Country and Galicia mainly). The French Government is afraid the small Catalan community in France and others languages will go behind... The French will often offer solutions as long as French and France has something to win at the end of the line... Not different to other big states but a nice long tradition and experience at this.
Irish would be the solution since the Irish, who've only colonised the States due to a famine, deserve this and a lot more and all the other minority people would be backed up and could mirror themselves in this example.
Since Catalan isn't a "State" language it has not been acknowledged by the US, making it a unique case in Europe. Some people will then ask themselves why many Catalans feel "cheated" since we have given so much to European culture as the Europeans we've always been. Even in Spain's darkest periods the Catalans have been opened to the rest of the continent. This is a fact and not a plain idea. Catalan has been a major European language for the past 1000 years and has given great names in literature, the arts and science.
Once the panegyric about my language is over I insist on Irish Gaelic as my firm candidate. As the official language of a State it is an official language of the EU. That doesn't mean they have translators and interpreters for everything but any Irishman can write to Brussels in Irish and be answered in his own language. True, they don't do it as much as they should. We, the Catalans, cannot do this and have to write in a language we learn from early childhood but which isn't our own. Many other European languages, starting with our Occitan cousins are in the same situation.
Maltese is also an officiaL EU language now although it only has 400.000 speakers on the island (many more in Australia if I remember well) whilst Catalan isn't. A funny situation indeed. Maltese is the only official Semitic language in Europe since it is closely related to Arabic dialects spoken in Northern Africa with later heavy Latin input in the past centuries.
If Irish were to become the official language of Europe all European children would learn it from early childhood. In a couple of generations it would be a universal European language. Long live Ireland! I would enrol in an Online Irish Course immediately and somebody would make a lot of money, I'm sure. Not me, I can assure you, although I don't mind giving good ideas to enterprise.
Please forgive any typos. I have no time to edit.
Jordi   Friday, October 29, 2004, 12:04 GMT
EU not US and a few other things. Please forgive me.
Damian   Friday, October 29, 2004, 15:09 GMT
<<By the way, is Irish Gaelic an official language in the EU? I thought it was official in Ireland only>>

It's a nice idea, Jordi, to nominate Irish Gaelic! Easterner is right, really, as both Irish and Scots Gaelic (and Welsh for that matter) are very much minority languages, spoken and understood by very small percentages of the respective populations of Ireland, Scotland and Wales.

I suppose you chose Irish Gaelic because Ireland is a completely independent nation. Also, Ireland has the euro!
Damian   Friday, October 29, 2004, 15:20 GMT
I have thought more on this and I second Jordi's nomination!


btw: I heard on the radio a report that during a phone-in earlier today on BBC Radio Five Live the topic was about which would British people find or prefer to have the closest link with: Europe or the USA. The general consensus was a big majority for Europe, taking various issues into account...I think they said the ratio was 4 to 1 in favour of closer ties to Europe than the USA. That's logical seeing as we are geographically part of Europe!!

If the UK and the US didn't have a common language (sort of) the issue wouldn't have been raised I reckon.
Sanja   Saturday, October 30, 2004, 12:17 GMT
Just stop arguing and choose English as an international language, because it already is. Everyone knows it already, so we don't have to learn another one... LOL :)