Which visa to choose???

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PeterF
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Post by PeterF » Thu Jul 17, 2003 12:25 pm

Caroline wrote:Are you stup... oh, from the USA, that explains... :mrgreen:




Hank, could I ask that you stop being so negative towards Americans
Americans are among the most employable foreigners in Finland

:(

You can asks but the leopard rarley changes his spots.
He is also a bit of a wind up man..the fact that you have responded with this request means he has won yet another "lets bait the yanks" competition. He is a joker...he plays on the fact that many Americans are a bit arogant which is trait not understood by Finns.
Yeh yeh we know you are the greatest at everything and for everyone in the world and we really need the USA, but dont want to hear it breakfast dinner and tea time!
When you get to meet Hank you will perhaps understand more about the person. Big man but even bigger heart.



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Hank W.
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Post by Hank W. » Thu Jul 17, 2003 12:46 pm

Peter Floyd wrote:he plays on the fact that many Americans are a bit arogant which is trait not understood by Finns.


To understand the Nordic mentality:

In 1933 the Danish writer Aksel Sandemose wrote a novel called "A refugee crosses his tracks". It takes place in an imaginary town called Jante (based on Sandemose's own hometown, Nykbing Mors) in which the Jante Law clearly dictates the social and moral standards. The law has, unfortunately, a larger geographic relevance. The book is about
the ugly sides of Scandinavian smalltown mentality, and the term "Jante-
loven" meaning "Jante Laws" has come to mean the unspoken rules and
jealousy of such communities in general.

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Janteloven (The Jante Law)
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Du skal ikke tro du er noe.
(You shall not think that you are special.)
Du skal ikke tro du er like klok som oss.
( You shall not think that you are of the same standing as us.)
Du skal ikke tro du er klokere enn oss.
(You shall not think that you are smarter than us.)
Du skal ikke innbille deg du er bedre enn oss.
(Don't fancy yourself as being better than us.)
Du skal ikke tro du vet mer enn oss.
(You shall not think that you know more than us.)
Du skal ikke tro at du er mer enn oss.
(You shall not think that you are more important than us.)
Du skal ikke tro at du duger til noe.
(You shall not think that you are good at anything.)
Du skal ikke le av oss.
(You shall not laugh at us.)
Du skal ikke tro at noen bryr seg om deg.
(You shall not think that anyone cares about you.)
Du skal ikke tro at du kan lære oss noe.
(You shall not think that you can teach us anything.)
Cheers, Hank W.
sitting here like a lemon looking for a gin.


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jvrijn
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Post by jvrijn » Thu Jul 17, 2003 1:08 pm

I agree with some of Peter's points. And also would like to add that Hank is one of the most helpful persons on this forum, no matter what your nationality is. As a Finn he has had to put up with a lot of Finland bashing, but this has not deterred him from helping all of us out.

Having said that, I would like to respond to Hank's comments.

As for the prostitution camps in Northern Finland... It sounds kind of wild, but just because the Finns can't believe it, doesn't mean they don't exist. It is worth the investigation. (It might have been a Dutch business idea :-) )

As for the housewives. If that's what they want to do and their families are happy with it, let them be. One can say equally bad things about Finnish couples wanting to keep everything separate, not want to have joint bank accounts, parents not being there for their children. Actually, in Finland both partners need to work to be able to pay the bills. Both arrangements have their up-sides and down-sides.

Finally, I see a lot of America-bashing in Europe, even anti-Americanism. My girlfriend is a Finn who grew up in The States, in Florida even :-). I have met many Americans in the last 6 years, some are nice, some are not. Some are smart, some are not. Some are ignorant, some are not. Just like any other group of people / nationality / cultural background. And that includes the Finns. I have met many Finns I like and many I don't like. I have met some real Finnish "juntit" over the years that definately score high in the category stupid and ignorant. The same goes for the Brits, the Dutch, the French and the Germans I've met.

My point is, it doesn't make sense to generalize based on nationality or any other common denominator for that matter. It is good to be critical, but stereotyping doesn't help.

/Jeroen


Caroline
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Post by Caroline » Thu Jul 17, 2003 1:44 pm

Hank:

The greatest sin is rushing to judge a person according to their nationality. All of the gripes you have against us are based on things that politicians have done as well as stereotypes; who would be . When you fix your mindset that "all of those people are blah blah blah"...you become guilty of the same thing you accuse us of being. The bashing has got to stop somewhere.

So, based on what you know about me, for example, what basis would you have to describe me as "stupid"? And can´t you at least recognize that the individuals who are the exceptions, are just as noteworthy as the "crowd"?


About the cultural comments: 75% of American women with school-age children are in the workforce, and so that percentage is even higher if you count the working women who do not have any children.


I´ll point out that in Finland, particularly in Lestadio culture, stay-at-home mothers are quite common up in the north, and they qualify for more Kela benefits the more children they have. What is the difference between a women collecting Kela benefits, and getting cash from her husband? I would argue that it is the same kind of support, but different source.
Former expat in Finland, now living in New Hampshire USA.

Remembah whea ya pahked ya cah!


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Hank W.
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Post by Hank W. » Thu Jul 17, 2003 2:12 pm

jvrijn wrote:As for the prostitution camps in Northern Finland... It sounds kind of wild, but just because the Finns can't believe it, doesn't mean they don't exist. It is worth the investigation. (It might have been a Dutch business idea :-) )


Well, I *know* what they are. Ever seen those roadside motels that there are no cars and no people ever? Well, after Gorbachev opened up the borders and there was an influx of tourists, people from Murmansk started to make trips to Lappland. And of course, when the "season" is on theres a lot of tourists from the south, but "offseason" the Russian tourist buses make the motel owners happy. So all you need is a few dozen "business ladies" in a motel that looks like it was left by the Germans in 1945 (well, some of them are almost) and I don't for a second doubt where the idea is from.
http://www.helsinki-hs.net/news.asp?id=20030227IE7

I've worked in hotels long enough, I know the "business lady" phenmenon all too well.


jvrijn wrote: One can say equally bad things about Finnish couples wanting to keep everything separate, not want to have joint bank accounts, parents not being there for their children. Actually, in Finland both partners need to work to be able to pay the bills. Both arrangements have their up-sides and down-sides.


Well, it used to be Finnish women were the ones to take care of the money in the family. We are a matriarchal society by ancient history. And what comes to the modernb thing - womens emancipation came and the Finnish men sat there and watched (as usual). Actually, now that I am single I am poor again. I need to find a wife to support the living or emigrate within a year or I'm bankrupt.

jvrijn wrote: I have met some real Finnish "juntit" over the years that definately score high in the category stupid and ignorant.


Finns do have that reputation though. Remember the "Jukka brothers" of MTV or the Swedish tv ads... we can laugh at ourselves though. Only it is us ourselves that have to do the joke. Though I giggle the 'Pirkka' charachter of the Norwegian telly.
Last edited by Hank W. on Thu Jul 17, 2003 2:41 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Cheers, Hank W.
sitting here like a lemon looking for a gin.


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Hank W.
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Post by Hank W. » Thu Jul 17, 2003 2:40 pm

Caroline wrote:The bashing has got to stop somewhere.


I haven't started "bashing" yet, but I'll promise to keep you in mind if I ever find any good abusivities.

Caroline wrote:So, based on what you know about me, for example, what basis would you have to describe me as "stupid"?


Apart from the idea of imagining of starting a business, as people are allowed to dream, only your recent snorting a pea up your nose.

Caroline wrote:And can´t you at least recognize that the individuals who are the exceptions, are just as noteworthy as the "crowd"?


All Greeks are suspect especially when they bring gifts. And one sparrow does not make a summer. And all Finns are obnoxious drunken bastards with a knife and white tennis socks....

Why I am not allowed to stereotype Americans when they stereotype blacks and hispanics - is it too tough to bite your own medicine? And don't try to lecture me on human rights. I worked on a ship with 900 crew, 100+ different nationalities and 71 languages. I was the only Finn - and there wasn't any Swedes either. Talking about stereotypes and "finding an individual". Lady, everyone is a suspected £$€¤%& before they prove me contrary. I do not believe in the goodness of man, the sincerity of women nor the benevolence of the rich nor the honesty of the poor. Call me cynical or Ishmael.

Caroline wrote:About the cultural comments: 75% of American women with school-age children are in the workforce, and so that percentage is even higher if you count the working women who do not have any children.


You missed the point. The question was of the "high society" ladies whose hubby is a rich Nokia engineer whose children are two poodles and whose greatest concern in life is not to have same dress as anyone else at the next coctail party. Well, I have to admit my sister is exactly that. With a poodle and three kids and an engineer husband... relocating back to Finland after 20 years abroad. And then they go and buy a house in Westend. Yeah, like my attitude has nothing to do with class society nor Finnish national good like envy :mrgreen: not at all...

Caroline wrote:I´ll point out that in Finland, particularly in Lestadio culture, stay-at-home mothers are quite common up in the north, and they qualify for more Kela benefits the more children they have. What is the difference between a women collecting Kela benefits, and getting cash from her husband? I would argue that it is the same kind of support, but different source.


Yes, but they are mostly country hicks..mean farmers and north Finland actually needs to have atleast *some* population so I rather pay from my taxes benefits for a mother of 12 than support a wino in Leppävaara pissing in front of me on the street when I come home from work.
Cheers, Hank W.
sitting here like a lemon looking for a gin.


Geri Bush
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Post by Geri Bush » Thu Jul 17, 2003 2:42 pm

I have always believed the ol' Dire Straits song. "People are people." I don't believe the geographic place of birth has anything to do with a persons heart. Steriotypical thinking often just hurts.

When I was 16 I was kicked out of Finnish History class because the teacher didn't like Americans. I took it pretty hard. I was young and REALLY naive. I decided the best thing I could do was except it and left the class. (for a beer). Despite the fact I never attended his class again, the teacher was able to see me interact with the other students around the school. He became curious because I wasn't acting as an "American", asked other students about me, and by the end of the year would accually talk to me in a friendly manner. I was really glad that his peception of me changed. AND most important I learned why NOT to do the same. There is good and bad everywhere and I try to learn from it all.


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jvrijn
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Post by jvrijn » Thu Jul 17, 2003 2:50 pm

Geri Bush wrote:I have always believed the ol' Dire Straits song. "People are people."


I thought that was a Depeche Mode song? Your history teacher was obviously one of those honest True Finns that couldn't stand American arrogance and ignorance... <- Please understand that I am being sarcastic.

/Jeroen


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Hank W.
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Post by Hank W. » Thu Jul 17, 2003 2:51 pm

I guess I portray myself as being a stereotyping person. Well, thats then your sin of assessing a person of what they write on some message board and not meeting them in person. :mrgreen: Ever read my signature - with thought?Always believe everything you read on the internet!
Cheers, Hank W.
sitting here like a lemon looking for a gin.


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Hank W.
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Post by Hank W. » Thu Jul 17, 2003 2:56 pm

Peter Floyd wrote:the fact that you have responded with this request means he has won yet another "lets bait the yanks" competition.


It is not even a challenge. You just need the "magic lure" and some motor-up mouthwash. :D

I guess we need more Britcom on the telly. Or then I just need to get a life.
Cheers, Hank W.
sitting here like a lemon looking for a gin.


Caroline
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Post by Caroline » Thu Jul 17, 2003 8:58 pm

I didn´t realize that it is socially unacceptable to speak out when you are offended by something. I could counter so many of those points, but the issue is mute. What defines the line between "good-natured teasing" and "abuse" or "prejudice"?
Former expat in Finland, now living in New Hampshire USA.

Remembah whea ya pahked ya cah!


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tjawatts
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Post by tjawatts » Fri Jul 18, 2003 12:17 am

Hank never really insulted anyone. He made a sweeping generalisation about Americans being stupid (a very common sterotype) followed by a big grin, it was a joke. He did not pick you out as being stupid, dont get offended so easily.

As Hank himself said, do not judge him until you have met him just as he has not judged you by his general statement.

You come from the land of free speech, or is that only if it doesnt say anything bad about Americans?

BTW we are a very international board and I for one am offended by the insuation that Americans are one of the few people that are employable or unlikely to be welfare leeches.

Tony

(actually, he might have got a bit personal now, but only after you started on him)


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DAL
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Post by DAL » Fri Jul 18, 2003 7:12 am

Caroline wrote:I didn´t realize that it is socially unacceptable to speak out when you are offended by something. I could counter so many of those points, but the issue is mute. What defines the line between "good-natured teasing" and "abuse" or "prejudice"?


I have read this thread I feel that another opinion needs to be brought in, not enough stench going around. If you are offended then you are taking it too personally, and thus bringing it to a whole new level that Hank never intended at the outset. This reference between "good-natured teasing" and "abuse" or "prejudice" is a little off the mark. A little tougher skin is in order, nationality shots have always been and always will be part of the game when you live outside of your home country; right wrong or indifferent, it is a fact of life.

I have read this forum since shortly after it began, although the joined date doesn’t reflect that (Phil!!! :D) and I have never read where Hank has been malicious in his comments or advice, good natured prodding never hurt anyone. Especially ones as harmless as nationality jabs, if anything they help maintain the sense of humor that is required to live. Rock on Hank and keep the stupid American jabs coming!
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Hank W.
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Post by Hank W. » Fri Jul 18, 2003 10:35 am

tjawatts wrote: He did not pick you out as being stupid, dont get offended so easily.


"Getting offended" is one of the definitions of "being stupid" in Finland :mrgreen:

One of these cultural things I suppose ...if you go to the store and complain "the American way" yelling and screaming and calling the clerks names and wanting to speak with the manager - one might be in for a biiiiiig surprise. Like being tossed out. Complaining here is made in a far more subtle manner. Basically it is "caveat emptor". You bought it - its yours. Going in to change a product because it is the wrong color or something like trhat - quite usual in retail trade in the US or UK is virtually unknown in Finland, atleast to the extent I've always been gawking my jaw open.

And as I say "customer service" needs to be redefined when you come here. I guess the salespeople don't bend over backwards because you really don't have an option that much to go shop elsewhere. Now I can spot a good salesperson who knows their stuff. When I know to buy a computer gizmo, I want the clerk to know more of it than me! Unfortunately, in the big chains they are more for "good looks" and "sales experience" - never in the ad they said you had to know a thing about computers! So I prefer the stores with a few freak bros behind the counter. You don't get the pepsodent smile nor the greasy handshake, but they tell you the AGP won't fit into the PCI slot and not just *sell*

tjawatts wrote: Americans are one of the few people that are employable or unlikely to be welfare leeches.


IMHO it is the Swedish, Dutch & Germans, UK & Irish. (*) There is a buzzsaw veteran who could count with his fingers how many Americans on this board living in Finland are employed or have never gotten any KELA... but that would be unfair :D

(*) pecking order might vary by profession. Swedes have the upper hand of culture and language. Dutch & Germans are usually bi- or trilingual to start with and are cosmopolitan. UK & Irish have then again better chances for TOEFL jobs.
Cheers, Hank W.
sitting here like a lemon looking for a gin.


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Hank W.
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Post by Hank W. » Fri Jul 18, 2003 10:44 am

Caroline wrote:I didn´t realize that it is socially unacceptable to speak out when you are offended by something.


<average finnish hotel clerk>
Yes, Americans are loudmouthed and complaining all the time. They cannot sit down for a minute, discuss in low tones, eat with table manners and be like "normal people". All the time they say you are rude and they are unacceptable everything. It is winter, -25 outside and they want ice, bucketfuls of ice! Crazy people! I am so glad when they leave. It will be so peaceful. And they tease people too. One man left money on the table and the waitress had to chace him halfway to the lobby to give him his change back. The poor waitresses know they will be fired for stealing. So terrible people...
</average finnish hotel clerk>
Cheers, Hank W.
sitting here like a lemon looking for a gin.


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