German Of The Day: Nichtstun

That means doing nothing. And nothing is what German students want.


Is genius made from bootstraps or handouts? A university in Germany may answer that question by giving out free money for being lazy. The University of Fine Arts in Hamburg said it’s going to give three people $1,900 “idleness grants.”

I doubt if any new discoveries will be made here. Academics know this already: “Doing nothing isn’t very easy.” But, hey. Somebody has to do it.

The “grant for doing nothing” will be for “active inactivity” as the project studies lack of ambition for research for an exhibition next year on sustainability called The School of Inconsequentiality: Towards A Better Life.

“This scholarship program is not a joke but an experiment with serious intentions — how can you turn a society that is structured around achievements and accomplishments on its head?”

Benefit Tourism Booming

More than 10,000 Britons are claiming unemployment benefit in Germany because they are not “hassled” in to finding work there.


I dunno. What’s worse? The folks who abuse a system or a system that invites you to abuse it?

“In Britain I had to put up with patronising officials, some of whom tried to get me to accept a job as a cleaner despite my degree.”