Skip to content

The Finnish integration model that is doomed to fail

August 26, 2008

Ever since I moved to Finland thirty years ago, I have watched how immigration officials and their planners have attempted to deal with foreigners. When I came to Finland in the late- 1970s, there were so few outsiders living in the country that some sociologists like Heikki Waris claimed that there was no racism as a result.

Looking at Finland’s history, ethnicity and/or nationalism have played powerful roles in shaping the country’s history last century, especially if we look at our relations with the former Soviet Union. Irrespective of the small number of outsiders, racism always existed in Finland. Waris only had to look at the treatment of the Roma or how some Finns perceived the “lazy” Orthodox Skolt Saami versus the more “efficient” Lutheran Saami. Any sociological study of how some blacks were treated in the 1960s in Finland would have proven Waris’ argument incorrect. Brand logos like Musta Pekka, the former black mascot on Fazer licorice, and very old ones no longer in existence such as “Kongo” shoe polish explain the obsolete view some Finns had of black people.

By keeping the number of foreigners small does not help purge a country of racism. The argument is as ridiculous like a white person from the South of the United States claiming at the height of the slave era that there was no racism until blacks started living in that part of the country.

Sometimes I think that Finland’s integration model before for foreigners was based on the idea that if you integrate and disappear, everything will be find. A good example was when the Vietnamese boat people came to Finland. Instead of concentrating them in one area, our “intelligent” social planners spread them throughout the country evidently as way to speed up their integration.

What should Finland’s effective integration model be? For one, it should be founded on human rights and should reflect the underlying spirit of the social welfare state — nobody is left behind because we are a community. You do not need a policy like multiculturalism in Canada to understand that everything works more effectively when there is respect and sensitivity for other cultures. Like religious and political freedom, people have a right to practice their culture.

Any other so-called “integration” model that tramples on the human rights of a person and offers simplistic answers to a complex matter, such as those former Finnish mascots depicting blacks, will not work and are doomed to fail.

60 Comments leave one →
  1. DeTant Blomhat permalink
    August 26, 2008 6:19 pm

    – A good example was when the Vietnamese boat people came to Finland. Instead of concentrating them in one area, our “intelligent” social planners spread them throughout the country evidently as way to speed up their integration.

    And which group of refugees has the least unemployment? Right – these very Vietnamese.

    And what comes for these Finnish “black mascots from the bygone eras” – you look *today* at products in USA and Europe and Asia… OK so we can agree this is bad:
    en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Image:DarkieToothpaste.jpg but why then is Uncle Ben and Aunt Jemima doing in your “multicultural paradise” USA? Why are they not bad? Why is Finland bad? We only have kisses… not even Banania or Cola Cao… Why are you making these hateful posts with the one agenda – to make Finland look somehow exceptionally bad? Why do you hate Finland so much? I can only wonder why? Is it because you lack identity – you hate Finland and the Finns because we have identity? And then you can find the reason for racism in Finland – you see when you look yourself in the mirror.

  2. DeTant Blomhat permalink
    August 26, 2008 6:24 pm

    – nobody is left behind because we are a community.

    As long as you want to be a part of that community.

    – Like religious and political freedom, people have a right to practice their culture.

    Yes we have that – but you are with “multiculturalism” promoting that we accept discrimination against women or sexual minorities and abusing human rights, racial segregation, forced marriages and such? Where do you draw the line?

  3. Enrique permalink
    August 27, 2008 1:05 am

    If you look at labor force statistics from April 30, 2007, they show the Vietnamese labor force at 774 people with 40% unemployed. The mascots you speak of are different: they were Blackfaces not pictures of black people. I am not making “hateful” posts as you say. These did look bad and were offensive to black people. Your comments in this blog have shown very eloquently what your opinions are about other people. Attitudes like your of some cultures is obsolete and outdated. It has no place in a modern society such as Finland. If there is someone who has a shaky view of what his identity is, that is you. I have traveled and lived in many countries and can distinguish what is racism and what is not. The Chinese Olympics scandal of the Spanish basketball team was criticized strongly in an LA Times editorial and by the Guardian. The Spaniards did not considered racist, even though it was a clear example. A basketball player such as Pau Gasol, who plays for the Lakers of Los Angeles, which has a big Chinese and Chinese American community, should have known better.

  4. Enrique permalink
    August 27, 2008 1:17 am

    As you know, that is a difficult question to answer. But it does not mean that “the Finnish cultural police” goes and tell the women of a culture that we see that discriminates that they are now free. They won’t understand you because that is how they live. Multiculturalism does not mean that in a developed society like Finland we can accept discrimination as you mention. Such people have a better chance of liberating themselves from such discrimination. A tolerant society does permit Muslim gays/lesbians, or the opportunity for these people to assert themselves.

  5. Onkko permalink
    August 27, 2008 5:19 am

    First fix your link and name to correct one http://fi.wikipedia.org/wiki/Laku-Pekka

    And this http://reinoblog.blogspot.com/2007/03/ohjeita-suomeen-muuttavalle.html could be good list what foreigners can do, its in finnish tho but i assume youre fluent.

    Main problem now is flowerhat aunties like you who give free of responsibility/can demand cards like “racism!” “its my culture!” “its not my fault, its hidden racism!”.
    How immigrant can integrate when you teach to yell racism if he wants something and dont get it or when asked to obey rules?
    And by rules i mean simple things like no yelling after 22, reserve washing machine like everyone else.
    “Ulkomaalaislapset haukkuvat ja nimittelevät, tilanne koetaan pelottavaksi. Jos lapsille sanoo vastaan, he huutavat että tällainen kuuluu heidän kulttuuriinsa.” http://www.marialohela.fi/blogi/2007/11/30/varissuo-lausteen-asukkaan-aani-29112007/

    So thanks for understanding that immigrants have great culture and we have to understand it or were racists..

  6. Tiwaz permalink
    August 27, 2008 5:28 am

    Question is about that assertion.

    Asserting yourself can mean, specially in certain cultures with strong ties to certain religion, asserting dominance over your surroundings.

    Or refusal to accept different norms of new country.

    Again, you really can’t argue in favor of multiculturalism when you look at societies which have tried it (resulting in ethnic ghetto) or how many cultures have principles or ideas that are in violation with ours (rape crimes committed by certain ethnic/cultural groups because their origins have different set of principles regarding females).

    In fact, that you try to suggest that vietnamese refugees should have been packed into single area to produce vietnamese ghetto shows how out of touch you are in this issue.

    It is BEST to separate immigrants as thoroughly as possible. If they build ethnically “pure” ghetto, it will result in We vs They situation. If they can’t form such cultural ghetto and fight against integrating… They will learn to live in new country. They have to, they have no choice.

    Your example is amusing, as we have to take into account that current vietnamese are not necessarily those who were spread out into Finland. Those have had long time to learn the language and get passport. To integrate. These are new wave of immigrants.

    90% of vietnamese who have lived in Finland for long time have found work.

    Sadly, many work for other vietnamese so this is starting signs of segregation, which is definitely bad for society.

  7. Onkko permalink
    August 27, 2008 5:42 am

    You have wrong name and link, its Laku-Pekka http://fi.wikipedia.org/wiki/Laku-Pekka

  8. Enrique permalink
    August 27, 2008 8:35 am

    Onkko, thank you for the link. Both (Blackface and Laku-Pekka) now explain well the matter. You are right about the scare tactic used by some such as Bloomhat. My sincere wish is to discuss openly the issue for one reason: Finland is my home and I identify with the country. My children were born there and I hope that when they are adults and have children, will be discussing more constructive things such as how to build a better and stronger country.

  9. Enrique permalink
    August 27, 2008 8:41 am

    Tiwaz, my family were immigrants and we NEVER lived in a ghetto, raped people or committed crimes. We were hard working people who progressed thanks to the opportunities our new home gave us.
    My point about the Vietnamese is that immigrant policy makers in Finland have, in my opinion, very little idea what integration is all about. Being a foreigner is not an illness that has to be hidden. I am amazed some times by the past ignorance of immigration officials in Finland. In my opinion, they have not known what to do in the past because policy makers have little idea what about the matter, even though over 1 million Finns and their descendants live abroad. They should ask these people what is immigration and how to reap the best benefits for both parties.

  10. DeTant Blomhat permalink
    August 27, 2008 10:23 am

    No you do not identify with the country. You hate Finland. You wish to destroy Finland into a 3rd world cesspit to be able to make your own egocentric gain. That is the “problem” in Finland – the disappearance of national identity and unity. The Finnish Nation or State is not something that people nowadays see as important or binding – something that is worth taking care of, something that is meaningful in individuals life. Thus, there are no moral objections to abusing the state of all the money they can. And absolutely no motivation for doing anything for that society – people are more willing to avoid taxes and do grey work now than when the common morale was tighter. This is caused by the rise of culture of consumerism and hedonistic individuality with global views, causing local societies to lose the feeling/meaning of responsibility towards it.

  11. Tiwaz permalink
    August 27, 2008 10:23 am

    Good for your family.

    But you cannot deny realities. In “multicultural” societies and even less multicultural there are couple things that always are apparent.

    First, if you put all immigrants in one area, you get a ghetto. Natives will run away, value of property drops and those who move in are folk you don’t want to move in. And result is that ghetto. Made worse by ability of immigrants to live there without integration to society as whole.

    Second, immigrants of certain cultural background are WAY overrepresented in rape statistics. I’ll let everyone guess where these joyful fellows originate.
    That is clear sign of failure for multiculturalism. They do not integrate and they do change their thinking to fit new society. Instead they pretend to be at home when they are in what we would call civilized nation.

    This is not about how other nations handle their immigrants. This is about Finland being Finland and preferably staying that way.

    For that goal, immigrants have to be made to integrate. If they can rely on one another in ghetto to avoid integration and even cover up for their crimes, it will not be beneficial for society as whole. And eventually not to immigrants either. Native population can be pushed only so far before it snaps back.

    Benefit for both parties is for immigrant to stop thinking like they used to think at home, stop behaving like they did at home and adjust their thinking and behaving to existing conditions.

    You speak of wanting to build stronger country, but at same breath you speak of decommissioning the very thing that made it that strong country. Finnish culture and society. You cannot have multicultural society without destroying dominant culture, or weakening it to point where it is unable to withstand against imported cultural effects.

    Your examples of “working” societies are ones that lack existing dominant culture, because natives were killed or slaved by colonists. (Argentina, USA, Canada, Brazil etc etc)

    That doesn’t work here.

  12. DeTant Blomhat permalink
    August 27, 2008 10:36 am

    – But it does not mean that “the Finnish cultural police” goes and tell the women of a culture that we see that discriminates that they are now free. They won’t understand you because that is how they live.

    Yes, we don’t go into *their country* to tell them how to live. But if they come to our country we tell them they are free as we cannot understand them as it is how *we* live *here* and it is we who make the rules in our own country just as they make their own rules in their own country.

    – Multiculturalism does not mean that in a developed society like Finland we can accept discrimination as you mention.

    That is what I am exactly saying – so why do you then claim otherwise? My opinions on other people are based on how they prove themselves. And so far nothing I have seen proves anything else but that letting people be in multiculturalism and allowed to scream racism if they don’t obey the rules is the worst kind of method

    – My point about the Vietnamese is that immigrant policy makers in Finland have, in my opinion, very little idea what integration is all about.

    It shows only that you have no idea about integration nor about the Vietnamese in Finland. Look at how many people have vietnamese as a 1st language, and who have a Finnish citizenship. That is what you talk of when you talk about integration – not someone just arrived in the country.

  13. DeTant Blomhat permalink
    August 27, 2008 10:45 am

    – A tolerant society does permit Muslim gays/lesbians, or the opportunity for these people to assert themselves.

    But you are advocating we accept “multiculturalism” and demand for me to respect some culture that advocates discrimination of such sexual minorities?

    so its either:
    a) we make the rules and they respect them
    b) they make the rules and we respect them

    Which is it? You cannot have it both ways can you Enrique?

  14. Enrique permalink
    August 27, 2008 11:10 am

    In first place, there are rules against discrimination in Finland and these must be respected. They can, if they wish, be against such minorities. That is their choice. But they cannot impose that we turn the clock 100 years and start discriminating on people because of religion, sex etc.

  15. Onkko permalink
    August 27, 2008 11:11 am

    Why you still have that blackface link and name musta pekka in your post? i already gave correct link and name.

    ..Brand logos like Musta Pekka, the former black mascot on Fazer licorice that the EU deemed racist..

    There is no brand logo like musta pekka in your link or named musta pekka, its brand name Laku-Pekka and logo like their logo was.
    There was musta pekka playing cards tho.
    Foreigners or ones who dont know get totally wrong picture of case now.

  16. Jonas permalink
    August 27, 2008 11:14 am

    Goodness, you seem to have attracted all the ultra-nationalist xenophobes as commenters sadly. They tend to believe that anything that isn’t singing the praises of the country, especially written by a foreigner, is somehow akin to blasphemy. It’s very difficult to believe that such attitudes are still around in 2008 – especially by educated people of the type that visit blogs in other languages. I suppose I could believe such views existed on Suomi24 or in deepest Kepu backwaters.

    It’s a strength to live in a country where one doesn’t get thrown in prison or censured for writing what one thinks and for writing about the problems in the society. It’s a shame that some people think otherwise. I wonder if, e.g., a Helsingin Sanomat report on corruption in the Centre party would be seen as an attempt to spread bad rumours about the Finnish political system and present a bad image of the country? Or is it ok to write about bad things if you do it in Finnish or Swedish? Should the only material allowed in a foreign language in a democratic country that believes in the freedom of expression be tourist brochures? Are some of my compatriots really so thin-skinned that they can’t take anything at all that they perceive to be criticism? Do they really think it’s better to sweep things under the carpet and pretend they don’t exist? Has that ever made a problem actually go away?

    If I were a foreigner reading this blog, I suspect my image of Finland would be damaged much more by the comments left by some of its readers than the content of the blog entries themselves. I can imagine people reading them and wondering why Finnish people are so scared of discussing their country’s problems. Nobody should be so naive as to believe that any country is perfect and utterly without fault. We’re lucky in that ours is pretty high up on the list of well-run societies and is a great place to live. But that doesn’t mean that even we don’t have issues that still need to be solved.

    The strange thing is is that you haven’t, in this entry, written anything particularly new that hasn’t been written by Finnish writers. It’s the same views that have largely been taken by one side (seemingly the winning one) in the public discourse in the narrative of, for example, the newspaper press and internal workings of political parties.

    I would disagree that EU deemed Fazer’s logo racist. It was one single member of the European parliament who mentioned it in a speech that lead to the wider European media picking up the story (well, if I remember correctly – I may well not). I don’t think that is the same as the institution itself condemning it.

  17. DeTant Blomhat permalink
    August 27, 2008 1:13 pm

    – In first place, there are rules against discrimination in Finland and these must be respected. They can, if they wish, be against such minorities if they wish. That is there choice. But they cannot impose that we turn the clock 100 years and start discriminating on people because of religion, sex etc.

    EXACTLY! So why do you advocate turning back the clocks a 100 years?

  18. DeTant Blomhat permalink
    August 27, 2008 1:22 pm

    Jonas, its a different thing someone like you writes about issuse – people who live here and know what they are writing about – instead of some outsider who does not understand the issues. Besides which – you or I probably would not leave Finland in the first sign of trouble – we would be defending this country. What would this kind of a “foreigner” do who has no roots or culture to defend? Jump the ship and leave to the next “multicultural” country. So a person who wishes to have an opinion must also be willing to live in the results of his opinions. Foreigners who cannot even make their living in their own country then come to teach us what? How to be losers? You can be a sycophant to foreigners all you want and worship them, but I am sick and tired of the racism agains Finns and libelous claims and offensive remarks from people who should be greatful they are allowed to become a part of our society.

  19. DeTant Blomhat permalink
    August 27, 2008 1:30 pm

    – I can imagine people reading them and wondering why Finnish people are so scared of discussing their country’s problems.

    How about the foreigners can go discuss and solve their own problems first.

    – Are some of my compatriots really so thin-skinned that they can’t take anything at all that they perceive to be criticism?

    If there is something valid to criticize except of whining and being anti-Finitic.

    – We’re lucky in that ours is pretty high up on the list of well-run societies and is a great place to live.

    So should these foreigners be lucky – instead of shitting in the nest and biting the hand that feeds them. There are many countries – where they are originally from – that have much worse problems than to come tell us how bad we are.

    – But that doesn’t mean that even we don’t have issues that still need to be solved.

    The local population decides what those issues are, not outsiders.

  20. DeTant Blomhat permalink
    August 27, 2008 1:44 pm

    The two above weren’t directed at Enrique specifically – its just me being angry at the whole phenomenon there can’t be *one* positive thing *ever* about Finland – always complain, complain, complain. Why is it I do not complain? Why is it that some foreigner always has to be more special than me to warrant a complain? I face the same troubles, I live in the same country – and I work hard to make ends meet – and these people just sit around and complain and always are demanding special treatment.

  21. Jonas permalink
    August 27, 2008 1:55 pm

    There is something valid to criticise! I don’t think Enrique is an outsider. From what I have read, I don’t get that impression at all. I absolutely do not get the impression that he hates Finland. Quite the contrary. I believe I read about his quest to search for his roots and learn Finnish. I believe he has even got a Finnish parent (I’m very sorry if any of this is wrong – I simply don’t have the time to read back to find out if my memory is right!). So, I think it’s extremely intolerant to call him an outsider and hater of Finland. Moreover, it appears extremely inaccurate. You don’t do what he has done out of hate. If anything, he is a model migrant who has integrated, I would guess, to a high degree.

    For me, that gives him full entitlement to join the debate on migration (and any other matter) on exactly the same terms as you or I. In fact, I would go further and suggest that he is actually – when it concerns migration – actually more experienced in the matter than you or I. He’s gone through it. I can say that I have been a migrant to Sweden and UK, so perhaps I have also to a certain extent. But, I was generally living in the expat corporate bubble, so not really comparable and perhaps doesn’t even really count! In any case, I have not tried to migrate and integrate into Finnish society. And I shouldn’t imagine you have either, DeTant. I would hope people are open-minded enough to accept that we can learn from experiences of those who have. That is not the same thing as worshipping them or conceding to their every wish. It is a two-way process that involves listening and just this form of debate. Just as it is entirely unreasonable for migrants to demand that they have no responsibility to integrate, attempt to learn the language, find a job, follow Finnish law etc – it’s equally unreasonable for us to expect them to become suddenly Pekka Suomalainen. If we are inviting migrants to our country, we need to put the procedures and mechanisms in place to help them settle and integrate successfully into our society as a part of it – not something outside of it. It’s those mechanisms that have been lacking in the past and are now being reformed, improved and introduced.

    Of course, some migrants do come here without good intentions. The press over-focuses on them (somewhat understandably; crime and law-breaking sells more papers than successful stories of integration and new businesses etc), but I’d imagine those successful honest migrants who are here with the will to fit-in and become part of the society are even more horrified by those migrants than us as it gives them this hugely negative reputation with is then used as fuel by the xenophobes. They use such examples as an ‘acceptable’ way of hiding what they really mean: Finland for the Finns (and they mean white Finnish-speaking people from Finland and only Finland generally).

  22. DeTant Blomhat permalink
    August 27, 2008 2:01 pm

    – Instead of concentrating them in one area, our “intelligent” social planners spread them throughout the country evidently as way to speed up their integration.

    Coming back to this the greater Helsinki area cities have quite successfully “integrated” people into the city since the 1960’s by not letting homogenic concentrations grow up, rather than have a haterogenic city. So in an area there are high rises, smaller houses, owned properties and council flats. This model is based on the Nordic “equality model”. So the city is heterogenic with no distinct rich or poor areas… utopian model but has worked to keep the suburbs somewhat in check. I still cannot understand what makes some foreigners so special they would or should be instead of following the heterogenic equality be allowed to ghettoize themselves in some council flats? Of course this has happened in a few places and there you have the seeds of conflict ready. On the one hand it is human nature to team up with your own group, but now Enrique I cannot understand why you are stating that the homogenity of the Finnish culture is bad but then you turn around and disapprove the heterogenity in the next phrase? Can you now at some point make up your mind what you want? A heterogenic society with community spirit or a split society with homogenic enclaves where the others dare not enter and which would not go help each other if their house were on fire? You seem to be advocating the latter and that confuses the heck out of me as then you jump around and all of a sudden complain of its effects? You can’t have the two things, and I find your evaluation of the Nordic equality model and its success a bit bizarre as you on the one hand praise the USA as being the “melting pot” but when we actually succeed in the melting you claim it hasn’t been a success. What *do* you want?

  23. Jonas permalink
    August 27, 2008 2:09 pm

    DeTant, interesting point on successful integration by Helsinki and the capital region. I wonder how the former Swedish-speaking majorities in places like Sipoo, Espoo, Kirkkonummi etc would see this integration as being successful when for them it has meant (well, not yet in Sipoo.. but give it another 20 years) that it’s essentially impossible to get service in Swedish without causing a fuss in things like the health centres, employment offices, police stations, Kela offices etc etc. Is that 2-way integration with the native population? Or does integration only apply for Finnish-speakers? I think they may, at least, have a different view on how successful this integration of the new town dwellers was.

    I make this point, as I think it’s interesting to see that people find integration ok if it’s with their own group.

  24. DeTant Blomhat permalink
    August 27, 2008 2:15 pm

    – So, I think it’s extremely intolerant to call him an outsider and hater of Finland.

    It is his own intolerance of Finland and the Finnish ways that makes me feel he hates this country – and always bringing the superiority of foreign countries that makes him seem as he writes as an outsider, not someone who actually knows the facts and understands the soul of the people here. Its just the impression I get – no doubt he has observed a lot.

    – If anything, he is a model migrant who has integrated, I would guess, to a high degree.

    If you call “model immigrants” people who are superior to you and condecendingly tell how much better life is elsewhere I hope there moves atleast a dozen to your neighbourhood tomorrow and starts telling you how to run your life.

    – Just as it is entirely unreasonable for migrants to demand that they have no responsibility to integrate, attempt to learn the language, find a job, follow Finnish law etc

    But that is exactly what Enrique is telling we are racists and bad people as we do expect this. And you call me a xenophobic nationalist for saying so. Make up your mind as well.

  25. DeTant Blomhat permalink
    August 27, 2008 2:28 pm

    – I think they may, at least, have a different view on how successful this integration of the new town dwellers was.

    Well the thing is they didn’t integrate the new town dwellers – they got overrun. Porvoo is a good example of a place where the demographic change hasn’t been so rapid its 2-way… Sipoo has the problem the locals are spread out and the new development will make them a “minority in their own country”. So whats the problem, are they worried they’ll be overrun? Are they being xenophobic and racist – don’t the Sibbo people embrace multiculturalism?? A good example of the integration is Närpes. Inkoo is being successful again due to less pressure.

    And of course there is the trend only recently turned where a Finnish & Swedish couple the surroundings (usually big city=Finnish speaking) switched the language so the kids went to a Finnish language school and then that was it for the next generations. Nowadays I think the trend is that the kids will be put to a Swedish kindergarten.

  26. Onkko permalink
    August 27, 2008 3:39 pm

    Swe speaking mostly speak finnish too and its about time unreasonable mandatory swedish classes vanish.
    Yes i didnt like useless mandatory swedish classes in school.
    Our behaviour are so near that it isnt problem. Or oh well, we dont look them up to nose… (flames..😉 )

    There is areas where sweden is spoken.

    That was flammatory but we are so near each other, only bit behaviour and of course language but most of them speak finnish already.

    200 years is enough i think.

  27. Enrique permalink
    August 27, 2008 4:57 pm

    Hi Jonas, many thanks for pointing out the Lakku-Pekka thing. Maybe you are right. If so, I will correct it. However, I am surprised that I am even discussing these matters. As you mentioned, Finland is a great country but that does not mean it does not have issues. Some of the attitudes in the blog would have a contrary effect on Finland: it would undermine it. Let’s get one matter straight — if Finland is going to bring foreigners let’s see how we can use the synergy to create a stronger society. Racism is one matter that will destroy Finland — or any society for a fact.

  28. Enrique permalink
    August 27, 2008 5:03 pm

    DeTant, I like a society with many cultures. I love cities like Los Angeles, New York, London and other were there is a strong multicultural flavor. For me it is a fringe benefit, a present, to feel the world is almost as close as your fingertips. The Vietnamese model in Finland was a failure. What about the Swedish speakers? The Nordic model you talk about (Westend versus Jakomäki) has been successful to a point but it is an economic factor based on income not nationality. Would it be a bad thing for Helsinki to have a “Little China” or “Little Somalia?” I don’t think so.

  29. Enrique permalink
    August 27, 2008 5:07 pm

    DeTant, where do you get this idea that someone is superior to you? I am just brining home some questions that apparently some are interested in debating. You can criticize the USA, Argentina, Spain or any country that I have made my home. It does not matter. But get it out of your head that I am some “Finland-basher” who gets “high” on my comments. It takes courage to face a problem that exists but some people do not acknowledge. It takes guts to debate without hiding behind the cloak of nationalism.

  30. Onkko permalink
    August 27, 2008 5:56 pm

    Would it to bad thing to have HAHAHA
    LOOK SWEDEN AND FRANCE! there is areas firemans cant go without police escort. Read news please…

    And what about those vietnamese, they do their thing without disturbing. Total success, here are few vietnamese restaurants and rest dont know what they want to. I think i have one as neighbour ,could be japanese tho.
    Theyre finnish now not ghetto kids.
    And swedish can speak swedish, they speak finn too.
    And really look out of window, 700+ NOGO areas like your nice little somalia in france now. Read news.
    Too many foreigners in same place == ghetto.

    Seems you want to make zoos where you can peek time to time and get oriental food? cook yourself!

    And may i ask you why you compare us with cities which have more people than our whole country?

    If you want big city then helsinki-vantaa is near, just hop in.
    You want to do separate blocks for black, yellow, blue, orange people to feel “multicultular”? We want all blended.

  31. DeTant Blomhat permalink
    August 27, 2008 6:49 pm

    Oh, Jonas regarding the “successful integration” in Helsinki – how about the little “scandal” of Ruskeasuo koloniträdgården… You cannot buy from there unless you are a Swedish-speaker. (Not dragging Åland into this as IMHO they can have their independence)

    Enrique – you might love cities like Los Angeles, New York, London and other were there is a strong multicultural flavor… and congestion and a high crime rate and gang wars and homeless and beggars on the street and rich people living in guarded mansions. However I want to live in Finland where the difference is between Westend and Jakomäki (have you seen the movie “Nousukausi” in English “Upswing”?)

    Why are you claiming the Vietnamese are a failure – the Vietnamese are a *success* .
    http://www.mol.fi/mol/fi/99_pdf/fi/06_tyoministerio/ 06_julkaisut/07_julkaisu/thj228.pdf
    “Integration of refugees in Finland in the 1990’s.”

    And we already have “Mogadishu Avenue” in Vuosaari and the Hakunila riots a few years back – thats about as close to a “little Somalia” anyone wants. We have one million people in the GHA and 5 million in the whole country. You want some people to make their own village to go look at them instead of making them a part of this society? I cannot understand why – Finland is Finland and can only survive as Finland – remember that USA and the 13 states – united we stand, divided we fall. We cannot afford this kind of egocentric attitude here – it can be afforded in megalopolises with a concentration of peole the size of this nation – like St.Petersburg for example. Wheres their “Little Somalia”?

  32. DeTant Blomhat permalink
    August 27, 2008 7:03 pm

    – Nordic model you talk about (Westend versus Jakomäki) has been successful to a point but it is an economic factor based on income not nationality.

    And here you are calling us racists when *you* have the chip on the sholdre of race, creed or color. Its all irrelevant – its the same playing ground, the same sand toys and the same cards dealt out for everyone. Thats *equality* we’re talking about here. Something sorely lacking from USA, Argentina or Spain.

  33. DeTant Blomhat permalink
    August 27, 2008 7:10 pm

    BTW Jonas & Enrique whats your opinion of this:
    http://www.turunsanomat.fi/sunnuntai/?ts=1,3:1012:0:0,4:12:0:1:2008-07-13,104:12:552541,1:0:0:0:0:0:

    *Who* exactly is having the “problems” and what should/could be done to rectify the situation?

  34. Enrique permalink
    August 27, 2008 9:25 pm

    There are no chips on my shoulder. The hang up is that you cannot live with other people and accept diversity. It is that simple. Diversity is the spice of life. Apart from countries that were built by immigrants, there are other ones that have successfully learned to live with diversity, eg India. Moreover, those regimes that have spread hatred and have cooked up phony race theories like Nazi Germany ended up destroying themselves. Your views of stratified view of foreigners, or diversity, is the real threat to Finland. Learn to accept diversity. Your narrow view of things makes you nearsighted to cultures.

  35. Enrique permalink
    August 27, 2008 9:37 pm

    What is the REAL problem. Take a look at official unemployment statistics from the labor ministry. I’ll repeat it again: unemployment on April 30, 2007 of Vietnamese was 40% and for Bosnians and Serbians is was 23% and 38%, respectively. You call that integration? It doesn’t show me that they have done well in Finland. Just read the official figures.

  36. Enrique permalink
    August 27, 2008 9:41 pm

    There are many examples throughout history and even existing today were different cultures can live together. It can, and will happen in Finland.

  37. Enrique permalink
    August 27, 2008 9:49 pm

    In the first place, DeTand, I never have called Finns racist. I said SOME Finns are racist. There is a big difference. I think racism is a problem in Finland. I am also optimistic — I believe Finland can overcome this problem. During my thirty years that I lived on a pretty permanent basis in Finland, I have met and made lots of good friends. And look at how much Finland has changed from the 1980s to today. It has made great strides especially learning to live with diverse cultures. There are now laws against racism and Finland’s immigration policy is based on multiculturalism. So, as you can see DeTant, matters have moved for the better.

  38. DeTant Blomhat permalink
    August 28, 2008 12:19 am

    – What is the REAL problem. Take a look at official unemployment statistics from the labor ministry. I’ll repeat it again: unemployment on April 30, 2007 of Vietnamese was 40% and for Bosnians and Serbians is was 23% and 38%, respectively. You call that integration? It doesn’t show me that they have done well in Finland. Just read the official figures.

    The *REAL* problem is a you cannot comprehend the statistics centre counts the people by “passport” – not by their ethnic origin as that is illegal in Finland unlike in the racist USA.

  39. DeTant Blomhat permalink
    August 28, 2008 12:22 am

    – I think racism is a problem in Finland. I am also optimistic — I believe Finland can overcome this problem.

    I think also the stupidity of foreigners is a problem. I also believe when the foreigners get educated this stupidity will cease to be a problem.

    Matters will move to the better when your kind of parasites are removed from the system.

  40. DeTant Blomhat permalink
    August 28, 2008 12:23 am

    Just stop blaming Finns and Finland for your own shortcomings.

  41. Tiwaz permalink
    August 28, 2008 5:59 am

    “There are many examples throughout history and even existing today were different cultures can live together. It can, and will happen in Finland.”

    Name to me examples where we have existing multicultural society which…

    1) Was not established on corpses of native inhabitants (like USA, Canada, South American nations etc)
    2) Has large majority of native inhabitants
    3) Does not experience serious social problems due to unintegrating immigrants causing continuous cultural clash

    You will not find any.

    Multicultural society is divided and weak, it cannot survive in situation where pressure is put on it.

    That is your problem, you fail to accept that Finland is what it is because of OUR CULTURE.

    It is what this whole country is built on, it is what keeps it running. Losing this identity due to “multiculturalism” would be suicide for Finland.

    You try to claim that solutions for societies which were formed on elimination of natives would work in Finland. Yeah, it could. If you slaughtered all Finns to point of extinction so you could work from empty canvas. But I do not want to be slaughtered or driven into reservation like indians in USA (who are slowly dying away in this “multicultural” wonderland).

    As for unemployment.

    What is REAL problem, is that immigrants appear to be idiots.

    “Where can I get a job without skills in Finnish”

    How stupid one is to think you can easily get a job without being able to communicate with natives? Or one that actually pays anything.

    Immigrants are unemployed because they are too lazy or unmotivated to learn the language and integrate into society. Once they do that, they get employed!
    Why? Because employer sees few things.

    1) Dedication. Guy who went through all that work is not going to jump next ship to Jambalayaland
    2) Reliability. Person who can behave correctly, is less of a risk than one who behaves in ways that may even be considered unacceptable in Finnish society.
    3) Communication. As that person now has skill in Finnish, issue of dangers from communication are reduced. Better you speak, less of a danger you are.

    By that time, they also possess passport of Finland and no longer count in your immigrant statistics Enrique.

  42. DeTant Blomhat permalink
    August 28, 2008 6:55 am

    -“Where can I get a job without skills in Finnish”

    – How stupid one is to think you can easily get a job without being able to communicate with natives? Or one that actually pays anything.

    In countries with huge economies running on “gastarbeiter” workforces requiring manpower. The REAL problem with Finland is that we do not have a “need” for such workers. We have a need for highly educated niche workers or then service sector employess – and catering to the elderly population who in their time were glad to have gotten basic education let alone learn foreign languages.

  43. Enrique permalink
    August 28, 2008 8:38 am

    Parasite? Wow, that is a new low, DeTant. No matter how much you kick and bitch, your myopic views lose ground every day. The issue is diversity and the power that is in it. Your arguments are incredibly naive and founded on misconceptions as well. There are foreign immigrants who are ten times more qualified than you. So don’t portray outsiders as if they were coming to Finland as tomato pickers or unskilled, even though there may be these types as well. Those foreigners that are living and will come to live in Finland are offering the country a service. Either rejuvenate Finland’s population or lower your living standards.

  44. Enrique permalink
    August 28, 2008 8:42 am

    Tiwaz, do you want me to answer your comment with four words? “Learn to accept diversity.”

  45. DeTant Blomhat permalink
    August 28, 2008 9:26 am

    A parasite lives off its host and gives nothing in return. It may contribute to its hosts demise. And when the host is too feeble to support the parasite, it switches off to another host. That is what you are saying we should accept? What I want is – if need be symbiotes, where both the parties benefit. Your promotion of multiculturalism means people are able to be this kind of a parasite hopping from one host country from another, leeching them dry and then continuing on to another host.

    – There are foreign immigrants who are ten times more qualified than you. So don’t portray outsiders as if they were coming to Finland as tomato pickers or unskilled, even though there may be these types as well.

    As we can see from all the beggars on the street they are ten times more skilled in begging than I am. Don’t try to portray all outsiders as some sort of skilled immigrants when they are not. The people who come here without a job either have marketable skills or then they have not. If they cannot find a job the reason is not that they would be ten times more skilled than I am. The reason is that they lack the skills the current labour market demands.

    – Those foreigners that are living and will come to live in Finland are offering the country a service.

    Yes, like the prison service? Living off social welfare service? Apparently the only thing that foreigners in Finland are able to do is complain and whine and then leave because they are not imperialistic overlords but expected to find their place in the society.

    – Learn to accept diversity.
    How about you learn to accept this is Finland.

  46. Enrique permalink
    August 28, 2008 10:26 am

    Duh?! Diversity means accepting all cultures. A civil debate is impossible with a person who labels others as “parasites” and who has serious hang ups about accepting people who are different from you.

  47. DeTant Blomhat permalink
    August 28, 2008 10:34 am

    Well accept the Finnish culture then in Finland. Anyone can have whatever culture they want – in their own country. Nobody is entitled to come tell other people in their own country how to live. Except you kind of duh-imperialists. This is Finland an either you accept it is Finland or then you can leave quite freely as well to be not-in-Finland. If you want to live in a ghetto nation nothing stops you from moving to one – I want to live in Finland so I object the want to change this beautiful country into a ghetto nation. If that means harsh words then so be it – rather harsh words now than me having to watch the riot police shoot them on the streets in 20 years. But then again that wouldn’t affect you as you’d changed hosts as you have no love for this country pf mine.

  48. Enrique permalink
    August 28, 2008 10:40 am

    The only person living in a cultural ghetto is you trapped by your own walls. In first place, Finland is NOT yours it is OURS. And if you are so ready to “defend” Finland, why don’t you appear with a real name and not hide under a pseudonym such as Kukkahattu? Check the “White Power race war” websites in the United States. They sound very familiar to your arguments…

  49. DeTant Blomhat permalink
    August 28, 2008 11:28 am

    Sorry, I am not trapped by my own walls. I am free to do whatever I please – as I happen to have the freedom to choose. Nobody tells me what to do and I can participate in the workings of the community as I understand what the community is and how it operates.. So I can watch tv news and understand what is happening here around me and then turn on the foreign channels to understand what is happening elsewhere. If I was following your ideas I would only be watching some satellite dish only hearing news from some faraway country with no understanding what is happening where I live. You can live in your bubble but being a part of the community is much more beneficial to the community than scratching your butt in front of your satellite tv and whining racism when you are unemployed because some Enrique told you should demand a job instead of going to language classes and making yourself employable.

    And what comes to “our” Finland – you seem to be living in another country. My Finland is a peaceful and prosperous nation with a rather slow economy and slow pace of life without conflict unless you go seeking one – whereas your Finland is a hellhole full of racists and bad things and miserable life which only foreign ideas and an invasion of foreigners to destroy the native culture will amend. So no, I don’t think you live in “my” Finland – I’d hate your Finland but fortunately thats all in your imagination and not the reality. You really should learn to love Finland for its good points instead of hating it so much without understanding half of whats going on – then you might find it worth defending as well. After all – as you said we have freedoms here some of those people coming here can not comprehend.

    As for the nom de plume – if you are so naive as to reveal your private information on the internet thats again your own problem – not mine.

  50. DeTant Blomhat permalink
    August 28, 2008 11:44 am

    – Check the “White Power race war” websites in the United States. They sound very familiar to your arguments…

    Your arguments then again sound as if you wanted to be living in apartheid South Africa.

    Again you are the racist here. What does a person’s skin color have to do with anything?

    Lets say instead of Finland we were in Tibet. So you would advocate the Chinese occupation and destruction of Tibetan culture? Is there a difference? If there is – what?

    – serious hang ups about accepting people who are different from you.

    I think you are the one having the hangups about living in Finland. Are you so angry and misinformed because you have trouble with the language? That can be frustrating.

    I’ve never said anything that I wouldn’t accept people who are different than I. The world is full of diverse nations. I am just saying that foreigners need to accept that if they are in Finland. That is what you have trouble accepting.

  51. DeTant Blomhat permalink
    August 28, 2008 12:06 pm

    And yes, unfortunately sometimes we need to use harsh words to make people look into the mirror. You say you have lived in USA, Argentina and Spain… OK, so why didn’t you stay and build one of these nations and call it home? Or did you just take the opportunity and when things got difficult you left them to fend themselves? This kind of lifestyle is actually beneficial for all parties involved when one is young to see other countries and they can use the labor force. What would be the point if all countries were the same? But at some point you must choose to settle somewhere and call it a home. And then you cannot live as if you were just visiting – then you have to bond with your home, and build it and if hard times come you will survive as it is your home.

  52. DeTant Blomhat permalink
    August 28, 2008 1:50 pm

    – Diversity means accepting all cultures.

    So you accept honor killings and female circumcisions? How about headhunting and cannibalism?

    I can accept that there are cultures with different morals and values. I don’t have to accept their cultural morals and values. Thats why there are different countries and nations. Finland has its own cultural morals and values. What is so difficult to understand and accept in that? In some cultures smoking marihuana is a religious thing. In Finland its drug use. According to you I should accept drug use? I don’t think so. I can accept smoking pot is a religious thing – but not in Finland.

  53. Enrique permalink
    August 28, 2008 5:13 pm

    I believe any sensible person who reads your posts can conclude pretty fast what is your ideological slant. You fear diversity because you see it as a threat. You feed it with stereotypes and misconceptions. Apart from not being able to accept diversity, you are a sore loser. You cannot accept other people’s ideas. But thanks for exposing them because it proves one of the central points of this blog: there are some Finns that have serious ethnocentric problems. You, if anyone, would be the last person who cares for circumcised women. You only mention these matters as a red herring to feed your distrust and xenophobia to conquer others. Cannibalism is a good example. If you have read scientific studies on the subject, “Christian” soldiers in South America used this as a pretext to wipe out a whole tribe. You many not know this, but there are different forms of cannibalism: exo, endo and auto. Your attitude is just the same as those that pillaged and killed other cultures: because they are not like us we must wipe them off the face of the Earth. If you want to learn about accepting other cultures, check out “cultural relativism.” But keep the comments coming in and be my guest if you want to make a horse’s ass out of yourself. It is your democratic choice.

  54. DeTant Blomhat permalink
    August 28, 2008 6:19 pm

    – If you have read scientific studies on the subject, “Christian” soldiers in South America used this as a pretext to wipe out a whole tribe.

    I actually just finished reading a book on the Jesuit misiones in South America. It wasn’t just one tribe that got wiped out. Now the question is if the Jesuits had any business there in the first place, but the bandeirantes surely took care of the natives. But why are you acting like this poor native is a bandeirante, o Jesuit? I don’t want to be civilized.

    – You many not know this, but there are different forms of cannibalism: exo, endo and auto

    You may not know this, but cannibalism is illegal in Finland. I have no need to go destroy cannibals – they can freely eat others as much as they want – I want to know why do you want to bring the cannibals here?

    – Your attitude is just the same as those that pillaged and killed other cultures: because they are not like us we must wipe them off the face of the Earth.

    Did you look yourself in the mirror when you said that, as you are advocating the destruction of Finland?

    – If you want to learn about accepting other cultures, check out “cultural relativism.”

    No, if I want to learn about another culture I go to live into that culture. And I would like to see different cultures live in peace instead of having a global coca-cola culture, If I go to Greece I want to go to a Greek taberna to eat wine leavesand not some Mummon Paari to eat mash and meat balls. You on the other hand would like the native cultures disappear.

    – But keep the comments coming in and be my guest if you want to make a horse’s ass out of yourself.

    Just continue making your factually misrepresenting Finland-bashing posts, one day you might learn something about the Finnish culture.

  55. DeTant Blomhat permalink
    August 28, 2008 6:33 pm

    – Apart from not being able to accept diversity, you are a sore loser. You cannot accept other people’s ideas

    I can accept the fact that you have ideas – but you can’t accept that I will not accept your ideas.

    – one of the central points of this blog: there are some Finns that have serious ethnocentric problems.

    Nope, you are the one with the problems with your inability to accept Finland.

  56. Enrique permalink
    August 28, 2008 7:40 pm

    Hey, this is getting a bit hairy. You are the one that equated immigrants with cannibals. Don’t you see how ridiculous your examples are? Your view of immigrants is lamentable. When you belittle other cultures you throw dirt on Finns that had guts to move to other countries and start new lives. Apart from accepting things, we have a right to change things. If there are scourges in society like discrimination in a country like Finland, which is a Nordic welfare state that respects human rights, how can some people that grew up and were educated in such a society have learned to have such racist ideas of other cultures? If that is what your education taught you, then you have learned very little. I have lived in a country where racial strife was a problem (the United States) and in countries with civil wars. I have heard the same arguments over and over again in such places. I have also seen these societies try to come to grips with the past. The way they do it is by not making the same mistakes of the past. These societies had the same thing in common: intolerance fed on flimsy arguments. That is why your ideas are spooky — especially in EU, Nordic welfare state Finland! Here is a country that is accelerating in all fields: education, innovation, equality but still accepting diversity is a life-and-death issue for some. Incredible, no?

  57. Tiwaz permalink
    August 29, 2008 5:43 am

    And yet you propose we bring style of society in those racist and civil war nations into Finland in form of “multiculturalism”!

    That is PRECISELY why they had racism and civil war and suffering. Because everyone thought THEIR way was the right one. There was not one unifying culture which determines what is right and what is not. There were, and are, plethora. Each trying to enforce itself as dominant, because that is what cultures do. They want to turn surroundings into same.

    It is built in to every surviving culture, because cultures which did not seek dominance over neighboring ones died out.

    That is why Finland must never do mistake of trying to adopt this “multiculturalism”
    It would kill our society and culture. Didn’t you watch that 30 days document the other day? About that Morgan Spurlock going to Navajo reservate to learn of their lifestyle. They said it flat out that their culture is dying, and with that navajo identity dies.

    Multicultural society does not preserve cultures and societies, it kills them. When there is no longer one, clear set of morals and values but everything is supposed to go… How can it end in anything but disaster?

    I see you cannot answer me Enrique. I asked very simple question.

    WHAT EXISTING SOCIETIES HAVE MULTICULTURAL SOCIETY WHICH IS NOT BUILT ON EXTERMINATION OF PREVIOUS NATIVE CULTURE AND ARE NOT RIDDLED WITH SOCIAL PROBLEMS OR CIVIL STRIFE.

    I can settle to ONE word answers. But you can’t, because there aren’t any.

    Multiculturalism is nice as an idea, but so is communism. And like communism, multiculturalism is impossible to put in practice. Same way anarchy is.

    It would be fun if anarchy would work, everyone do what is best for everyone and so forth. People naturally limiting themselves to proper behavior.

    But behold! All attempts of anarchist societies are FAILURES. Same way, multiculturalism is a failure. It fails to take into account that human psyche does not work in the way that this idealism needs it to work.

    Diversity does not equal good. It can be good, but it can also weaken the society and corrupt it from within. You do not see it, because you lack roots to identify with societies around you. By your own account, you have lived in multiple countries. And you apparently failed to integrate to each one as you moved on.

    You see things through eyes of one who lacks true, lasting connection with place and society. Yours is vision of short term, cutting down all the trees to make farmland to have more food for everyone.

    We, natives, have connection to this land. To this society. They are part of what and who we are. Part of our identity. When we look at your idea of cutting down trees, we see erosion, short term benefit for long term loss. Loss of fertile land which leads to situation where everyone has less for long period in future.

    You idea of trying to destroy Finnish society and culture through multiculturalism is cutting away all trees.

    Again, why is it so difficult… If you want to live in Whateveristani culture and society, move there. If you move to Finland, you adapt to it’s culture and society. You do NOT expect culture and society to adapt to you.

  58. Enrique permalink
    August 29, 2008 6:53 am

    What countries are you talking about. India? China? The Ukraine? Belorus? Greece? Russia? I don’t buy your idea that multiculturalism is synonymous with civil war. Take a look at India, for example. Take a look at Australia, Canada, Brazil, the United States.
    I have traveled so much and lived in so many countries that I cannot buy your argument. It is alarmist and without hope.
    In my opinion, a dynamic society is one that can accept others and can handle diversity. Those who want to integrate more into Finnish society have a choice — not a mandatory obligation. But, that is not possible in Finland because unemployment is so high. There is no way that anyone can aspire to take part in Finnish society if he is a foreigner and unemployed. It is the same case with the Finns.
    Get it across your head: diversity does not destroy anything. Only those who cannot accept it. That is what causes strife.
    By the way, I am a Finn and it is my inalienable right to put forth my ideas and try to change things. That is the Nordic, democratic way. You should know that if you are a Finn. I should not have to explain it to you.

  59. Tiwaz permalink
    August 29, 2008 7:13 am

    Ah, India. Did you read Aamulehti today?
    Interesting article how local group in Mumbai (Bombay formerly) are getting hostile towards immigrants from North India. And also demand that their maharathi (IIRC) language must have signs bigger than english language signs.

    China is not actually multicultural. There is one culture which dominates the rest, smaller offshoots. Truly different cultures in China (in western parts, Tibet etc) are being integrated.

    Russia… Georgia? Attempt to wipe our Mari, Mordva etc in side Russia…

    Canada, USA, Australia. Built on bleached bones of natives. Remember aborigins of Aussieland? Indians in USA and Canada? Where is NATIVE culture now?

    Dynamic, another buzzword like multiculturalism.

    Get this to your head, we… The Finns, the natives, want Finland to be Finland. Not some 3rd world hellhole where everyone can claim that their culture is Finnish and should be respected.

    Diversity destroys things, multiculturalism destroys. You cannot have strong native culture and multiculturalism. Either immigrant cultures or native culture must be eliminated or marginalised.

    Integration should not be voluntary but mandatory. It is necessity to preserve enough unity in population to keep it strong, capable of taking care of itself.

    Tell me, why I should respect immigrant culture which is at odds with my native values? What right immigrant has to come to MY HOME and force their ways upon it?

  60. Tiwaz permalink
    August 29, 2008 7:26 am

    Oh yes… India, SO wonderfully tranquil haven of multiculturalism.

    1992 riots as example.
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bombay_Riots

    Or those slums in USA, China, India and rest.

    Oh, or gang-rapes committed by some cultures in Australia, defended by parts of their community.
    http://www.theaustralian.news.com.au/story/0,20867,20646437-601,00.html
    So nice to see multiculturalism at work. Two incompatible cultures really meet nicely in rape statistics don’t you think?

    Shall we speak of slums or riots in wonderland of multiculturalism called USA? Or speak of their native populations and how strong and vibrant their culture and language are?

    China appears to be most peaceful of your list. Then again, it is 92% Han-chinese.

    Indeed, so WONDERFUL possibilities. I would love to see all these cultural/ethnic riots, gangs and slums in Finland.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: