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Re: [tlug] Looking for Summer Internship in Japan

On 18 March 2015 at 03:35, Stephen J. Turnbull <> wrote:
Benjamin Kowarsch writes:

 > Japan is particularly bad in terms of age discrimination.

True, but you shouldn't class Japan with other countries in that
regard.  The motivation is rather different.

I don't care what the motivation is, it is simply wrong and evil and there cannot be any excuse for it ever. We might as well find an excuse for other forms of discrimination or child abuse or people trafficking and other evils of society if we allow motive to provide mitigating circumstances.

So let me be very clear on this. Age discrimination is age discrimination is age discrimination.

Motivation does not make it any different.

 > [In Switzerland, if] you can find even a part time job in a
 > supermarket while on benefits, the combined pay from your part time
 > salary and your benefits will be higher than what you would have
 > not working that part time job.

I've always admired the Swiss system.  But it wouldn't work as well in
Greece (for one thing, with a 25% unemployment rate, there's no way
they could afford to top up to 70% of previous income).

The Swiss system is an insurance system, and you pay for the insurance. If more people become unemployed, the premiums will have to go up. It is managed accordingly. If you have ever had an insurance claim, you know that even if you are perfectly well entitled according to the insurance contract, it doesn't always mean the insurance will actually pay. The insurance will try whatever they can to avoid paying in an insurance event. So it is with the Swiss system, too.

For foreigners who work in Switzerland that system is grossly unfair because you cannot opt out of the insurance and pay very hefty premiums for it but in the event that you become unemployed you may have to leave Switzerland and cannot claim what you paid for.

The Swiss have treaties with neighbouring countries that stipulate that the governments of the host country will pay out the benefits a claimant is entitled to in Switzerland and claim the money from the Swiss insurance. But that only really works if you are a national of the country you claim in. If you live in France as an EU citizen working across the border in Switzerland and you become unemployed, if you have never worked in France and never paid French social security, they simply will not want to deal with you even if they are obliged to do so by treaty between France and Switzerland. You can try to sue the French state but that takes a lot of time and money. That slow working French court system will serve you an eviction order and evict you from your apartment for no longer being able to pay your rent much sooner than you would get anywhere with your claims.

The relationship between Germany and Switzerland is much better organised. Under their treaty, you pay 3 or 4% tax in Switzerland which will be deducted from your tax bill in Germany but you will otherwise be in the German system. The trouble is though, if you have German ancestry and a Japanese wife who doesn't speak any German, your wife will not get a visa in the state bordering Switzerland until she has passed the German equivalent of the JLPT1. You'll have to move to France instead where there is no such discrimination against non-US, non-Canadian, non-Australian, non-NZ, non-EU spouses of EU nationals, but then you pay all that insurance without getting insurance cover.

Which is a mess the Swiss got themselves into, because they thereby give incentive to EU nationals working in Switzerland to actually move to Switzerland even if they could live across the border and commute. Housing shortage is a huge problem now. What the Swiss should have done instead is give incentive to those NOT to move to Switzerland but settle across the border in neighbouring countries.

Handling the insurance claims from Switzerland directly without becoming an accomplice with lazy and corrupt state officialdom like the one in France would go a long way. They should handle claims for border commuters as long as they live in commuting distance to Switzerland. Fewer folks would feel the need to move to Switzerland then. Should I get another a contract there, I will get residence in Switzerland no matter what I have to do to find accommodation. I won't care if I thus put even more pressure on the Swiss housing market.

By contrast, the Greek system is a not an insurance system and therefore it would be rather difficult to increase premiums when unemployment figures go up, consequently pay outs must go down.


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