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The Irish Language and the Irish Government

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  • Moderators, Category Moderators, Science, Health & Environment Moderators, Social & Fun Moderators, Society & Culture Moderators Posts: 37,636 CMod ✭✭✭✭ancapailldorcha


    madbeanman wrote: »
    So as today is budget day I wonder if any supports will be announced for Foras, Conradh or an t-Údarás.

    It’ll be an interesting gauge of the a Governments commitment to the language.

    I know Conradh asked for 9 million euro but I doubt anyone expects them to get that.

    I think a better sign of the government's commitment to the language would be a full review on funding for public sector bodies which are supposed to promote the language to see how much return there is on investment.

    We sat again for an hour and a half discussing maps and figures and always getting back to that most damnable creation of the perverted ingenuity of man - the County of Tyrone.

    H. H. Asquith



  • Registered Users Posts: 207 ✭✭madbeanman


    I think a better sign of the government's commitment to the language would be a full review on funding for public sector bodies which are supposed to promote the language to see how much return there is on investment.

    I meant sign as a commitment whather negatively or positively.

    Also, the idea that expenditure on a language should be treated as a business investment seems strange.

    I hope that if a review is carried out it is with a number of representatives from Gaeltacht groups, language revitalisation activists and not run by monolingual English speakers or polyglot English speakers with no knowledge of minority language issues.


  • Moderators, Category Moderators, Science, Health & Environment Moderators, Social & Fun Moderators, Society & Culture Moderators Posts: 37,636 CMod ✭✭✭✭ancapailldorcha


    madbeanman wrote: »
    I meant sign as a commitment whather negatively or positively.

    Also, the idea that expenditure on a language should be treated as a business investment seems strange.

    I hope that if a review is carried out it is with a number of representatives from Gaeltacht groups, language revitalisation activists and not run by monolingual English speakers or polyglot English speakers with no knowledge of minority language issues.

    Where did I say "Business"?

    I just think that policy and expenditure should be based on evidence and one need not look far for that when you consider that another Anglophone nation not one hour's flight from Dublin have done a remarkable job preserving their ancestral tongue.

    I fail to see how throwing ever increasing sums of taxpayer money at the problem with solve it.

    We sat again for an hour and a half discussing maps and figures and always getting back to that most damnable creation of the perverted ingenuity of man - the County of Tyrone.

    H. H. Asquith



  • Registered Users Posts: 2,435 ✭✭✭Imreoir2


    I think a better sign of the government's commitment to the language would be a full review on funding for public sector bodies which are supposed to promote the language to see how much return there is on investment.

    How would you define return on investment?


  • Moderators, Category Moderators, Science, Health & Environment Moderators, Social & Fun Moderators, Society & Culture Moderators Posts: 37,636 CMod ✭✭✭✭ancapailldorcha


    Imreoir2 wrote: »
    How would you define return on investment?

    Some sort of reasonable metric measuring their impact on preserving and promoting the language.

    We sat again for an hour and a half discussing maps and figures and always getting back to that most damnable creation of the perverted ingenuity of man - the County of Tyrone.

    H. H. Asquith



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  • Registered Users Posts: 34,218 ✭✭✭✭Hotblack Desiato


    madbeanman wrote: »
    The issue is not that Irish should be the first language of the state (Whatever that means). The issue is that as long as the constitution says it is, it should be treated as such and if the Government doesnt like it, they should call a referendum.

    There is rather a lot of outdated aspirational old guff in the constitution, unfortunately. For instance, the constitution says "The State acknowledges that the homage of public worship is due to Almighty God", even though any attempt to actually do so would infringe individual rights and take no account of Irish society as it is, not how de Valera may have wished it to be 80 years ago.

    But in practice the constitution's exortation that we worship "Almighty God" has no practical effect whatsoever, and you'd have to question was it ever intended to? Or was it just optics? Wishful thinking? Remind you of anything...?

    Hard to see a referendum on the status of the Irish language happening though, when even the smallest change such as making Irish optional for Leaving Cert brings out the usual suspects all guns blazing. How they think that forcing pupils who, having studied Irish daily for 11 years, know they don't want to learn it any more to study it against their will is helping the language beats me. It helps keep Irish teachers in jobs though, and the Irish language industry vested interests are terrified that large numbers would opt out of Irish. For exactly the same reason, other vested interests are terrified that opting out of religion will become widespread.

    tl,dr : forcing students to study Irish is proving no more beneficial to the language than forcing students to undergo religious instruction is proving beneficial to the catholic church.

    Fingal County Council are certainly not competent to be making decisions about the most important piece of infrastructure on the island. They need to stick to badly designed cycle lanes and deciding on whether Mrs Murphy can have her kitchen extension.



  • Registered Users Posts: 2,435 ✭✭✭Imreoir2


    Some sort of reasonable metric measuring their impact on preserving and promoting the language.

    Any ideas on what a reasonable metric might be? There are those who consider any money spent on the Irish language to be a waste regardless of how effective it might be at preserving and promoting the lanugage.



    In other news, the budget has been anounced. An increase of €5 million in total for the Irish Language, the Gaeltacht and the Islands. This is out of a €36 million total increase for the Dept. of Culture, Heritage and the Gaeltacht.

    From that €5 million total, our friends in Údarás na Gaeltachta will be getting an additional €1.5 million for employment creation in the Gaeltacht. It seems someone in the Dept. of Finance was fooled into thinking that they are not the most wasteful public body in the world.

    Údarás na Gaeltachta will also get €1.5 million in capital funding to develop port and transport infastructure on the Aran Islands and Tory Island.

    There is an additional €500,000 available to increase funding for the Community Cooperatives and Community Development Companies which opporate in the various Gaeltacht areas.

    There is also an extra €1.1 million for the language planning process in the Gaeltacht.

    Finally, €580,000 will be made available for Irish language support schemes outside the Gaeltacht.


  • Registered Users Posts: 207 ✭✭madbeanman


    Imreoir2 wrote: »
    Any ideas on what a reasonable metric might be? There are those who consider any money spent on the Irish language to be a waste regardless of how effective it might be at preserving and promoting the lanugage.



    In other news, the budget has been anounced. An increase of €5 million in total for the Irish Language, the Gaeltacht and the Islands. This is out of a €36 million total increase for the Dept. of Culture, Heritage and the Gaeltacht.

    From that €5 million total, our friends in Údarás na Gaeltachta will be getting an additional €1.5 million for employment creation in the Gaeltacht. It seems someone in the Dept. of Finance was fooled into thinking that they are not the most wasteful public body in the world.

    Údarás na Gaeltachta will also get €1.5 million in capital funding to develop port and transport infastructure on the Aran Islands and Tory Island.

    There is an additional €500,000 available to increase funding for the Community Cooperatives and Community Development Companies which opporate in the various Gaeltacht areas.

    There is also an extra €1.1 million for the language planning process in the Gaeltacht.

    Finally, €580,000 will be made available for Irish language support schemes outside the Gaeltacht.

    Ive been keeping an eye on the budget at work today on Tuairisc but Im not seeing that detail regarding the Údarás.

    Could you provide a link to your info?

    Thanks^^


  • Registered Users Posts: 7,771 ✭✭✭Mark Hamill


    madbeanman wrote: »
    Again, there are many people who would be perfectly fluent in spoken Irish but not be confident in written Irish.

    Really, that's the excuse? That 2/3rds of the people who can fluently speak Irish (and do so everyday) cannot fill out a simple written form in Irish? But they can fill it out in English?
    I thought these people wanted to live their lives in Irish? If so many don't, like the Leixlip kid, then exactly why should anyone else care? How few people do we need to go to before we call it what it is - a personal hobby.
    madbeanman wrote: »
    Your point about the nurse is silly and ignores the concept of linguistic pragmatics entirely.

    Actually, it just shows the silliness in your argument. When you ask someone "Do you speak X language" and they say yes, then everyone is going to assume that they mean fluently.
    madbeanman wrote: »
    Can you see how this might make people less willing to interact with the state in Irish.

    Sure, but my point was making people more willing to interact with the state in irish isn't going to make more people want to be fluent in Irish. The people who would do more interacting in irish are the people who are already fluent but don't bother because of hassle. No one says "I don't want to be fluent in irish because I'll never have the option to use in doing official situations".
    madbeanman wrote: »
    Well obviously the whole point of the thread is that you are entitled to your opinion but many many people would make all kinds of arguments for the preservation of minority languages. One branch of linguistics which is interesting (if perhaps weak on empirical evidence I will admit) is that of psycholinguistics which would discuss things like linguistic determinism and linguistic relativity. It seeks to examine the influence a certain language may have on a thought process or conception of the world. I don't subscribe to it wholesale but I will say that I do think my personality changes somewhat depending on the language I am speaking.

    Arguments to hold on to minority languages may have merit but they do not automatically translate into arguments into countries wasting money to try and force their entire population into speaking that language.
    And any argument from a psycholinguistic point of view, or from the point of view that speaking more languages is just good for your brain equally apply to languages that are spoken in the rest of the world.


  • Moderators, Category Moderators, Science, Health & Environment Moderators, Social & Fun Moderators, Society & Culture Moderators Posts: 37,636 CMod ✭✭✭✭ancapailldorcha


    Imreoir2 wrote: »
    Any ideas on what a reasonable metric might be? There are those who consider any money spent on the Irish language to be a waste regardless of how effective it might be at preserving and promoting the lanugage.

    I don't but then I'm opposed to the current system and advocate a complete redesign to enable Irish to meet the challenges of the 21st century.

    We sat again for an hour and a half discussing maps and figures and always getting back to that most damnable creation of the perverted ingenuity of man - the County of Tyrone.

    H. H. Asquith



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  • Closed Accounts Posts: 796 ✭✭✭Sycamore Tree


    Imreoir2 wrote: »
    What part of Údarás na Gaeltachta being an economic development agency do people not understand? Trips to Hong Kong have nothing to do with the Irish language, they have to do with developing markets and attracting FDI. What do you expect an economic development agency to do during a recession, sit on their hands at home? You would swear that no bord member from the IDA ever went on a business trip to another country by the way people in this thread are talking.

    They had their budget cut by 70% during the recession, while bodies carrying out the same function outside the Gaeltacht saw increases of 50% during the same time, but sure Údarás na Gaeltachta is the source of the nations ills.

    The level of nonsence some people spout when it comes to the Irish language is breathtaking.

    Oh right and how many companies from Malaysia, South Africa and Hong Kong set up in Gaelteacht areas after these junkets?

    Udaras na Gaeltachta is up there with Fas for waste. It's a quango and you know it.

    https://www.independent.ie/irish-news/udaras-top-dogs-rake-in-expenses-as-721-jobs-go-26670299.html
    Board members and senior management at Irish-language quango Udaras na Gaeltachta were paid €174,000 in expenses last year, despite the net loss of 721 gaeltacht jobs, the Sunday Independent can reveal.

    Since 2005, this group has been paid €2.5m in expenses and allowances in total.

    The excessive payout in expenses is coupled with the revelation that 22 of the top management at Udaras are paid in excess of €107,000 a year (principal officer grade), according to new figures obtained by this newspaper.

    A quango that wastes millions and millions in the guise of supporting the Irish language.


  • Registered Users Posts: 7,771 ✭✭✭Mark Hamill


    Imreoir2 wrote: »
    Where did you get that stat from? Just did a quick check and if you compare Daily Irish Speakers to the population as a whole, then for 45-64 year old's, Daily Irish speakers comes in at 23.0%, population as a whole is 23.8%.

    15 - 24 year old's, population as a whole is 12.1%, daily Irish speakers is 12.3%

    More or less the same, not biased significantly to Irish speakers being older in general than the population as a whole. Perhaps you should recognize your biases for what they are rather than passing them off as facts.

    Where did you get your numbers here? I can't find that breakdown by age on the census report.


  • Registered Users Posts: 2,435 ✭✭✭Imreoir2


    madbeanman wrote: »
    Ive been keeping an eye on the budget at work today on Tuairisc but Im not seeing that detail regarding the Údarás.

    Could you provide a link to your info?

    Thanks^^

    RTÉ/Nuacht


  • Registered Users Posts: 207 ✭✭madbeanman


    Imreoir2 wrote: »

    Grma


  • Registered Users Posts: 7,771 ✭✭✭Mark Hamill


    Imreoir2 wrote: »
    Again, you are creating a strawman. I have not disputed that Irish society by and large oporates through English. You have claimed that these organisations have "captured" the teaching of Irish for their own benefit, but have refused to substantiate your claim, and now seem intent on shifting the discussion onto something else rather than address this point.

    Of course: http://www.udaras.ie/en/faoin-udaras/ar-rol

    I don't know, €17.5million per year seems quite a bit to put only 7000 people in jobs (over hwo knows how long of a timescale). Not to mention they are employed in client companies, so companies that likely pay Udaras as well. That's a lot of public and private money going into what amounts to a recruitment agency.


  • Registered Users Posts: 2,435 ✭✭✭Imreoir2


    I don't but then I'm opposed to the current system and advocate a complete redesign to enable Irish to meet the challenges of the 21st century.

    Can you share some details of this redesign? Or have you not got past the "different and better" level of detail in the planning process.


  • Moderators, Category Moderators, Science, Health & Environment Moderators, Social & Fun Moderators, Society & Culture Moderators Posts: 37,636 CMod ✭✭✭✭ancapailldorcha


    Imreoir2 wrote: »
    Can you share some details of this redesign? Or have you not got past the "different and better" level of detail in the planning process.

    Would you like me to design a city while I'm at it? What sort of answer are you expecting here? There are lessons that can be learned from the Welsh that could be incorporated at the very least.

    Also, care to detail these all important jobs Udaras na Gaeilge is responsible for?

    We sat again for an hour and a half discussing maps and figures and always getting back to that most damnable creation of the perverted ingenuity of man - the County of Tyrone.

    H. H. Asquith



  • Registered Users Posts: 2,435 ✭✭✭Imreoir2


    Where did you get your numbers here? I can't find that breakdown by age on the census report.

    I found an age structure breakdown for the population as a whole here. I then checked the interactive tables in the Irish language profile, one of the tables gives stats for frequency of speaking Irish and age. I searched it for daily Irish speakers cross referenced by age and then added the relevant figures to make corrosponding age groups (The age groups were more broken down in the interactive table) so the figures could be compared. I was not able compare every age group because the the first age group for the population as a whole starts at 0, while the Irish language stats start at 3 years (babies under two don't speak a language so they don't include them in the tables).

    You could go in and find the figures for each year in age and put them together to get a full set of matching age groups, but it was merely idle curiosity that made me look it up so I didn't go any further when I was able to compare an older and younger age group to each other.


  • Registered Users Posts: 2,435 ✭✭✭Imreoir2


    Would you like me to design a city while I'm at it? What sort of answer are you expecting here? There are lessons that can be learned from the Welsh that could be incorporated at the very least.

    Knock yourself out. What I would like would be some kind of indication of the changes you think should be made. Going by this thread, you seem to favour defunding all organisations that are tasked with promoting the Irish language in some way. I might have picked you up wrong, I don't know.

    Are there any specific lessons from the Welsh that you mean? I know that one lesson from Wales that is going to be incorporated is a strenghend language comisioner with powers based on a system of standards that public bodies must comply with when providing services to the public, which will replace the existing (and ineffective) system of requiring public bodies to create and implement their own language schemes which set out the services each public body will choose to provide.
    Also, care to detail these all important jobs Udaras na Gaeilge is responsible for?

    Not really.


  • Moderators, Category Moderators, Science, Health & Environment Moderators, Social & Fun Moderators, Society & Culture Moderators Posts: 37,636 CMod ✭✭✭✭ancapailldorcha


    Imreoir2 wrote: »
    Knock yourself out. What I would like would be some kind of indication of the changes you think should be made. Going by this thread, you seem to favour defunding all organisations that are tasked with promoting the Irish language in some way. I might have picked you up wrong, I don't know.

    Are there any specific lessons from the Welsh that you mean? I know that one lesson from Wales that is going to be incorporated is a strenghend language comisioner with powers based on a system of standards that public bodies must comply with when providing services to the public, which will replace the existing (and ineffective) system of requiring public bodies to create and implement their own language schemes which set out the services each public body will choose to provide.

    As far as I can tell, they have achieved very little if anything. I do like the idea of the language commissioner though. Maybe a proper Irish language TV station with content for adults who wish to learn the language as well as for children. Ditto for evening classes around the country with a new syllabus. Tax breaks for people who undertake accredited courses. There are various incentives, revisions and ideas that could be implemented.
    Imreoir2 wrote: »
    Not really.

    They could basically all be sinecures then. Fair enough.

    We sat again for an hour and a half discussing maps and figures and always getting back to that most damnable creation of the perverted ingenuity of man - the County of Tyrone.

    H. H. Asquith



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  • Registered Users Posts: 2,435 ✭✭✭Imreoir2


    Maybe a proper Irish language TV station with content for adults who wish to learn the language as well as for children.

    Fair enough, though I do remember reading a report ages ago (don't ask me to find it) that said that TV is not an effective teaching medium. It is a passive form of entertainment and initatives in the past that have tried to promote learning through TV programing have been inefective.
    Ditto for evening classes around the country with a new syllabus.

    Most ETB's around the country would provide evening classes. There is a syllabus, TEG, that is available for teaching the language to adult learners that a lot of evening courses are based around. It's supposed to be good, though not being an edicationalist, I'm not really in a position to judge it for myself.
    They could basically all be sinecures then. Fair enough.

    I don't work for Údarás na Gaeltachta so I honestly could not say what their workload is like.


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 796 ✭✭✭Sycamore Tree


    Imreoir2 wrote: »

    I don't work for Údarás na Gaeltachta so I honestly could not say what their workload is like.

    :D

    Waiting for a reply here...

    https://www.boards.ie/vbulletin/showpost.php?p=108305332&postcount=192


  • Registered Users Posts: 2,435 ✭✭✭Imreoir2



    It's not just about attracting companies to set up in the Gaeltacht, it's also about developing markets for Gaeltacht based companies. I know the owners of a Gaeltacht based sea-food manafacturer, for example, who have been out to both Hong Kong and Malaysia (and South Korea) several times over the last couple of years because they are exporting to those markets and want to expand.


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 796 ✭✭✭Sycamore Tree


    Imreoir2 wrote: »
    It's not just about attracting companies to set up in the Gaeltacht, it's also about developing markets for Gaeltacht based companies. I know the owners of a Gaeltacht based sea-food manafacturer, for example, who have been out to both Hong Kong and Malaysia (and South Korea) several times over the last couple of years because they are exporting to those markets and want to expand.

    You said FDI. Please reply to the actual post keeping the history.

    I would like you to comment on the financial waste too of the quango too.


  • Registered Users Posts: 207 ✭✭madbeanman


    You said FDI. Please reply to the actual post keeping the history.

    I would like you to comment on the financial waste too of the quango too.

    Do you have to be rude? Like can you talk to someone without being rude?


  • Registered Users Posts: 2,435 ✭✭✭Imreoir2


    You said FDI. Please reply to the actual post keeping the history.

    I would like you to comment on the financial waste too of the quango too.

    You will have to ask Údarás na Gaeltachta about the results of their efforts in attracting FDI to Gaeltacht areas. If you would kindly take another look at the post in question, the point that I was actually making is that trips to Hong Kong are not about promoting the Irish language.

    I can't really comment on financial waste in Údarás na Gaeltachta back in 2010, but I can't say I am entirely shocked that the number of jobs in their client companies decreased given the context they were working with at the time.


  • Registered Users Posts: 27,272 ✭✭✭✭blanch152


    Imreoir2 wrote: »
    I found an age structure breakdown for the population as a whole here. I then checked the interactive tables in the Irish language profile, one of the tables gives stats for frequency of speaking Irish and age. I searched it for daily Irish speakers cross referenced by age and then added the relevant figures to make corrosponding age groups (The age groups were more broken down in the interactive table) so the figures could be compared. I was not able compare every age group because the the first age group for the population as a whole starts at 0, while the Irish language stats start at 3 years (babies under two don't speak a language so they don't include them in the tables).

    You could go in and find the figures for each year in age and put them together to get a full set of matching age groups, but it was merely idle curiosity that made me look it up so I didn't go any further when I was able to compare an older and younger age group to each other.

    So it is not official published census statistics, just your interpretation of them?


  • Registered Users Posts: 2,435 ✭✭✭Imreoir2


    blanch152 wrote: »
    So it is not official published census statistics, just your interpretation of them?

    I had to get the stats from two different official published tables to compare them, if thats what you are asking.


  • Registered Users Posts: 1,343 ✭✭✭dwayneshintzy


    Imreoir2 wrote: »
    You will have to ask Údarás na Gaeltachta about the results of their efforts in attracting FDI to Gaeltacht areas. If you would kindly take another look at the post in question, the point that I was actually making is that trips to Hong Kong are not about promoting the Irish language.

    I can't really comment on financial waste in Údarás na Gaeltachta back in 2010, but I can't say I am entirely shocked that the number of jobs in their client companies decreased given the context they were working with at the time.
    There are over 5,000 Irish passport holders in Hong Kong. Why is it so ridiculous to imagine that the Irish language and culture could be promoted there?


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  • Registered Users Posts: 7,771 ✭✭✭Mark Hamill


    Imreoir2 wrote: »
    Can you share some details of this redesign? Or have you not got past the "different and better" level of detail in the planning process.

    Completely get rid of the Irish course in the junior/leaving certs for a start. As they are know, it's just the English course (which itself needs to be completely gotten rid of) translated to Irish. The Irish course should not be based on Irish poems, prose and literature, it should be based on getting kids used to hearing and speaking the language. Early classes should be centred around conversing in Irish and listening/watching popular media in Irish, later classes should bring in reading things like Irish language newspapers and websites and writing emails or filling in forms. You know, like how people would naturally learn a language if they moved to a foreign country.

    Another thing to do is have as many Irish channels and programmes as possible come with both English and Irish subtitles and dubbing, that way people can mix and match to their own ability.


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