Another Official language for the EU

#1
Gaelic Language Gets Official EU Status
June 13, 2005 1:22 PM EDT

DUBLIN, Ireland - The European Union is saying "Failte!" - Welcome! - to Gaelic, Ireland's little-used native tongue. But while official status is a boost to those campaigning to save the language from extinction, the move comes with a price: It will require the hiring of an estimated 30 Gaelic speakers at a cost to EU taxpayers of about $4.15 million annually.

Translation costs for the EU's 20 official languages had already been spiraling out of control. In January, officials said the amount was set to pass $1 billion following the entry in 2004 of 10 new EU members chiefly from Eastern Europe.

Critics also say the EU bureaucracy in Brussels, Belgium, has become a Tower of Babel that bogs down decision-making, leading to calls for a drastic reduction in the number of languages used officially.

Foreign Minister Dermot Ahern said the Irish language's new EU status would require legislation to be translated into Gaelic, while live translations in Gaelic would be provided at EU meetings if the Irish speaker requested it in advance.

Ahern said the move would go into effect Jan. 1, 2007, after which any Irish representative could be free to speak Gaelic, rather than Ireland's universally spoken English, at EU ministerial meetings or in the European Parliament.

"It's a real psychological boost for the Irish language," Ahern said in a telephone interview from an EU meeting in Luxembourg.

Ireland had been campaigning for official EU recognition of Gaelic since the first half of 2004, when the Irish held the rotating presidency of the bloc as it expanded from 15 to 25 members - and introduced new official languages ranging from Polish to Maltese.

The promotion of Gaelic is widely viewed as a political sacred cow in Ireland, even though elected representatives and officials - like the population at large - almost exclusively use English. In Ireland's own parliament, less than 2 percent of business is conducted in Gaelic.

About 40 percent of Ireland's 3.9 million residents identify themselves as fluent in Gaelic on census forms, but it's rare to hear the language spoken outside of a few language preserves on Ireland's western fringe. There, about 55,000 people identify themselves as native Gaelic speakers.

An increasing number of students are opting out of taking high school exams in Gaelic, which remains a required course from kindergarten onwards.

But Ahern said gaining EU recognition of Gaelic, besides creating jobs for Gaelic speakers, would boost pride and interest in what remains the Irish state's official language.

Political parties across Ireland united in praise of the EU move. Sinn Fein, the Irish Republican Army-linked party whose name roughly translates as "ourselves alone," was particularly effusive.

"While recognition of the language in an international context is symbolic, it is also much more than that," said Bairbre de Brun, one of Sinn Fein's two European Parliament members, who speaks fluent Gaelic and French. "The positive impact of this decision will be hugely influential for the 1 million-plus Irish speakers and learners in this country."

The European Union also granted semiofficial status Monday to three other regional languages: Basque, Catalan and Galician.

Residents of Galicia in northwestern Spain, Catalonia in eastern Spain and the Basque region straddling the Spanish-French border will all be able to receive EU documents in their home tongues - but only because the Spanish government agreed to pay for the costs of translation.

Last year's expansion created some unexpected bureaucratic hiccups.

Malta, the smallest member with a population of 400,000, held a competition for Maltese interpreters, but none was found up to EU standards. The EU sufficed with freelancers while it set up training courses on Malta.
Copyright 2005 Associated Press. All rights reserved.
 
#5
why not use English as the official language as it used and understood by many people in Europe where it is used as a 2nd langauge between different lingistic communities already.

the French won't be too happy about tho but having said that , the French language is too restrictive and not as willing to accept foreign words as the English language is.
 
#7
A load of b0ll1x NOBODY in Ireland speaks Gaelic except Sinn Fein scumbags. It is a dead language, useless in business, diplomacy etc, the population of Ireland is around 3.5 million and while 40% may claim on a census form they speak it fluently, asking the teacher to go to the toilet in Gaelic does not make a fluency.

The Irish government has made efforts to keep this language going by introducing a heavilly subsidised Gaelic language channel... and its shat.

More expense for us all to pay for some linguistic vanity.

I had to learn Gaelic in school in 'Oirerland and it has not been in the slightest bit useful and never will be. I would estimate that the overwhelming majority of Irish TD's (MP's) will never use this clapped out useless crap. Despite being a Paddy, these days the Irish really piss me off, sanctamonious, non smoking, politically correct, good little jumped up Europeans.

Outburst over. Time to go and lay down in a dark room.

*******
 
#8
"It's a real psychological boost for the Irish language," Ahern said in a telephone interview from an EU meeting in Luxembourg.

"While recognition of the language in an international context is symbolic, it is also much more than that," "The positive impact of this decision will be hugely influential for the 1 million-plus Irish speakers and learners in this country." said Bairbre de Brun.

I'll warrant they said none of the above in Gaelic.
 
#9
Vonshot said:
A load of b0ll1x NOBODY in Ireland speaks Gaelic except Sinn Fein scumbags.
Quite correct and those twats can't speak it properly.

Lets get cornish up there with them, and maybe urdu, blanga, pujabi....
 
#10
Talk about gravy train!! :roll:
 
#11
Tilbake said:
"It's a real psychological boost for the Irish language," Ahern said in a telephone interview from an EU meeting in Luxembourg.

"While recognition of the language in an international context is symbolic, it is also much more than that," "The positive impact of this decision will be hugely influential for the 1 million-plus Irish speakers and learners in this country." said Bairbre de Brun.

I'll warrant they said none of the above in Gaelic.
Point taken, but would the journo have been able to understand them if they did? :)
 
#12
The only language speaken fluently in the European Parliment is pure B*****KS! They don't need translators of any standard to translate what they spout. A baby gurgling down the microphone is all that is required.

Except when it comes to getting various allowances out of the European parliements pay office or ordering dinner with a healthy side order of gravy!!!

How much time and effort, not to mention cash has been p***ed away so that a few muppets can speak in a nearly extinct langauge, that will merely slow down and muddle the procedings anyway. What is better, someone speaking in English whom most will understand as a 2nd langauage or some twaddle that is spoken by only a minority? We'll have welsh, cornish, geordie and glaswegian next!!!

I'm not saying that a language should be forgotten, just does it have to be pushed in to peoples faces just to cause a rucus? If even the Irish government in the Dial doesn't use the language for most of its procedings why introduce it in to a parliment that already has many different languages?

As for Sien Fien, well, they only speak gaelic to p*ss people off, and specifically divide NI.
 
#13
Just use english, most euro forums i have to attend are in english, and widely spoken by everyone, if they don't understand then they will when you repeat it louder and slower. If not, nick their country, then tell them Bush told us to!!

OS
 
#14
Had to change Rugby clubs because I had a problem with the Welsh trying to speak English. Who are these other xenophobes too dumb to learn English? Where I come from even a five year old is reasonably fluent in it. Some people really should lift their game.
 
#15
If the EURO was about making holidays cheaper, as it appears to be being sold to the British public, and nothing to do with political harmonization then surely a single language would also make holidays easier and cheaper.

If Tony Blair really wanted to stick it to the French he would accept the abolition of the rebate in a trade for the adoption of a single European language, to be the first spoken and written language of all member states. That would have the dual effect of making life an awful lot cheaper and bring closer political harmonisation.

I bet the French Potato Faced President would soon say Non!!!!
 
#16
Have just worked out that it costs $150,000 dollars for each gaillic translator!!! Is that not a bit on the expensive side? And why would you possibley need 30 of them? All you need is one, who converts it in to English, and then all the others can convert it into the other languages. Job done.

PS Cpl_Ripper where did you get the pics from? She's tasty!!! Is that a Heckler and Kock G3K by any chance?
 
#17
I vote that Cockney Rhyming slang be adopted as a European Language!

That bunch o James Hunt's can shove up their 'arisses fcuk off back to Bruxelles :evil:
 
#18
I demand Sorbic! (Sorbic is a language somewhere between Polish ans Czech, spoken by the only native ethnic minority in Germany. The Sorbs live in the Spreewald area around Cottbus, southeast of Berlin. Presecuted by the Nazis as Slawic "subhumans" and then used by the East Germans as a token minority, they have a special status in Germany, with schools, street signs and official papers in their region being bilingual. All Sorbs speak fluent German though, but not many non Sorbs speak Sorbic).

Jan
 
#19
chocolate_frog said:
Have just worked out that it costs $150,000 dollars for each gaillic translator!!! Is that not a bit on the expensive side? And why would you possibley need 30 of them? All you need is one, who converts it in to English, and then all the others can convert it into the other languages. Job done.
For instance, how long would it take one person to translate the European Constitution? Then theres literally hundreds of other documents to be translated also. So, hire one person to do the job and take decades, or...
 

Similar threads

New Posts

Latest Threads

Top