7.5 Million Germans Don’t Read Write!

I mean read right, of course. But is that really all that bad? The other 70+ million apparently believe everything they read. So like what’s worse?

They believe at first glance, for instance, that 7.5 million Germans are completely illiterate (nearly a tenth of the population?). Then they might look a little closer and find out that “only” 300,000 Germans can’t read at all, which is bad enough, but still.
Of course that two million Germans “can only read and write individual words” (whatever that means) and another 5.2 million are really, really poor at reading and writing doesn’t sound all that encouraging either, but it’s still a long way off from “7.5 million Germans can’t read.” But hey, somebody has to right this stuff.

Rund zwei Millionen der Betroffenen könnten nur einzelne Worte lesen und schreiben und weitere 5,2 Millionen Menschen scheitern an kurzen Texten, könnten aber mit einzelnen Sätzen umgehen.


Smashingly Successful Satellite Soon To Smash Into Earth

A great scientific success or something, it looks like the 2,400kg German X-ray satellite telescope ROSAT will be less successful when it reenters our planet’s atmosphere later this year.

It is unlikely to burn up entirely due to the large amount of ceramics and glass used for its construction. Parts as heavy as 400kg could crash on the Earth sometime between October and December 2011. And if that wasn’t bad enough, even more frightening are the calculations that show how some of these parts could actually even hit, gulp, Germany. Of all places.

Wissenschaftlich gesehen, daran besteht kein Zweifel, war das fliegende Observatorium ein Erfolg.

German 80 Percent Rule Kicks In Again

OK, OK. This time it’s only 75 percent, but they’re at a real low right now. Give them another week or two.

When Germans decide to go with a fixed idea (obsession? delusion?) they do so with typical German thoroughness (typical German thoroughness is another fixed idea, obsession or delusion). In this case, they have decided to keep liking their defense Minister Karl-Theodor zu Guttenberg, plagiarism or not. Some 75 percent of Germans asked think he should stay in office after the University of Bayreuth took back his doctorate.

The German Left (meaning political opposition) is enraged, of course, but who cares? They’re always enraged about something. And some of the irony here is that this particular article comes from the Bild Zeitung itself, another thing that outrages the outraged German Left (always has, always will). They claim that Guttenberg was “created” by the Bild, like Dr. Frankenstein created his monster, I guess. And being that the German man or woman on the street is too dumb to know what is best for him or her, or so their thinking, they are all the more enraged that he/she has decided to stick to Guttenberg anyway, despite their quite loud and vocal enragement. Like how enraging is that?

Nur 22 Prozent sind der Meinung, zu Guttenberg soll aufgrund dieser Vorwürfe als Verteidigungsminister zurücktreten, drei Viertel (75 Prozent) verneinen dies. Drei Prozent sind unentschlossen.

Are these the sanctions you were talking about, Guido?

The issue of German exports is more complex. After the embargo was lifted, Germany’s arms business with Libya was quickly put back on track. German exports to Libya were worth €53 million in 2009, the third highest in Europe.

The Gadhafi regime has been blocking the mobile phone and GPS networks in Libya for days — possibly with the help of German technology — to prevent protesters from being able to communicate with each other.

And there is also controversy over the radar technology that Germany supplied to Libya to help it secure its borders. In 2010, the EU pledged to give the dictator €50 million so that Libya could prevent African refugees from reaching Europe’s coasts. But this and other deals like it are now coming back to bite the EU.

“The situation in Libya illustrates the fundamental problem that the long-term effects of arms transfers are not taken into account.”

Shocking Study Results: Men And Women Appear To Be “Different”

Researchers in Germany are scratching their heads in astonishment. A study entitled “Typical Man, Typical Woman” has revealed that men and women not only behave in typical man-like and woman-like ways, they actually even behave “differently” from one another.

Some 65 percent of the men tested liked talking about sports, for instance, whereas 75 percent of the women preferred gossip concerning their respective circle of friends.

Nearly 50 percent of young women tested classified themselves as being “communicative” (that means that they like to talk a lot) whereas a mere 21 percent of the men tested saw themselves so.

These completely unexpected results have led many researches to question the seriousness of the study and the methods used. A new study may now be necessary. Typical.

„Die Alltagswirklichkeiten von Mann und Frau haben sich zwar zunehmend angenähert, nicht aber das Interessenspektrum.“

Germany Talks Tough To Gaddafi Now That He’s Gone

He is gone by now, right? No matter. Libya has left him so it comes down to the same thing.

After recently flying to Tehran to meet with Iran’s otherwise quite isolated president, Mr. Laugh-A-Minute Mahmoud Ahmadinejad–a condition made by the Iranians in order to secure the release of two German hostages–German foreign minster Guido Westerwelle wants the world to know that he can also be a real toughy too and has threatened the now irrelevant Libyan dictator Muammar Gaddafi with “sanctions” should the violence in Libya continue.

Well, if The Artist Formally Known As Gaddafi isn’t gone by now, the threat of German sanctions will certainly be the last straw that will break his camel’s back, right?

“We are still absolutely clear about the fact that the situation in Iran concerning human rights and political freedoms is unacceptably bad.”

What do you expect from a country obsessed with academic titles?

Or do you know any French, English or American academics who place much value on being addressed “properly?” I didn’t think so.

The strange thing about this whole Guttenberg thing (he’s being accused of plagiarizing several sections of his doctoral dissertation), I find, is that he had already had his way cool title to begin with. He’s a freakin’ blue-blooded baron, for crying out loud. Why worry about some additional academic title?

But like they say, you can never be too thin or have enough money. Or, if you’re German, you can never have enough titles, I guess.

At least they’ll be some good jokes to come out of this: Minister Copy and Paste or Googleberg or he graduated “schummel cum laude” (schummeln means to cheat), you know, stuff like that.

The German public takes such charges seriously.

German Hostages Released in Iran Shortly After Which Iranian Film Takes Top Prize at Berlinale

Two German hostages have suddenly been released after four months of imprisonment in Iran.

Shortly after their release, an Iranian film took the top prize at the Berlinale.

I’m just sayin’, OK?

Jury president Isabella Rossellini said the choice of Farhadi’s film was “pretty unanimous.”