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Learning Languages for Life

Category: Linguistic Choice

Government UBI money for everyone!

What is Universal Basic Income? (UBI)

Universal Basic Income = is a form of social security[3] in which all citizens or residents of a country receive a regular, unconditional sum of money, either from a government or some other public institution, independent of any other income.[4

i.e. you get this money even if you have a job!

What is the difference between UBI and traditional unemployment benefits / welfare?

With traditional unemployment / welfare benefits you receive money if you do not have a job, but if you get a job you lose the benefits.

 

Does UBI sound crazy? Think again…

 

Reading 1

Pre-reading ideas / language activation:

  1. Guess the author’s linguistic choice (LC) for this sentence: Robot-to-worker  ratios are rising gradually / constantly / rapidly.
  2. Which country has the highest robot-worker ratio?
  3. Author’s Linguistic Choice (LC) :The cost of robot implementation is shrinking / decreasing / plummeting.
  4. True / False: When it comes to jobs at risk, the developing world is not much better-off that the developed world.
  5. True / False: Some believe UBI could be given as a lump sum when people turn 18
  6. Author’s LC: You could make exclusions for households / people / families earning $100,000  a year or more
  7. LC: The greatest / most substantial / key benefit of UBI would be the elimination of people living below the povery line
  8. True / False: Trial projects are currently being undertaken in Kenya and Switzerland

 

Now read the infogaph here

Post -reading discussion:

  1. What do you think about the arguments for and against?
  2. Of the two case studies, Namibia and  Alaska, which is more interesting for you?
  3. Why do you think that those countries mentioned are undertaking experiments but others like Australia are not?
  4. Which proponent quote did you
  • like the most
  • find the strangest
  • disagree with

Reading 2

Pre-reading ideas / language activation:

Author’s linguistic choice (LC): Finland’s pilot UBI scheme is radical / groundbreaking / unprecedented

True / False: The scheme sees people receiving 500 Euros a month

Author’s LC: The scheme is addressing / combating / tackling poverty

True / False: Under the current social welfare, claimants are afraid of losing out if they find a job.

LC: Finland has generous social security. As a result people refuse work because they feel better off with social benefits. This problem is growing / acute/ inevitable

Now read the article here

 

Post -reading discussion:

  • Do you agree that generous benefits can lead to an acute problem in terms of people turning down work?
  • The article references one person’s quote concerning “reduced stress”. What was the situation? How representative do you think it is?
  • How much do you agree with the listed benefits?

 

Video 1

Pre-reading ideas / language activation:

Elon Musk believes large-scale unemployment will happen. In the video he talks about UBI, and mentions a “much harder challenge” than how to deal with income for those without jobs. What do you think this challenge is?

Now watch..

http://aitonenglish.com/wp-admin/post.php?post=488&action=edit

 

Post -reading discussion:

To what extent do you agree that:

goods and services will be in abundance due to automation?

a lot of people derive their meaning from their employment?

finding a replacement for “meaning” will / would be much more difficult than implementing a UBI sloution

 

 

Video 2

Pre-reading ideas / language activation:

  1. In this talk,  Professor Peterson mentions the connection between computational (computer) power and concentration of wealth. What is the connection?
  2. When asked about the feasability of UBI,  he introduces sled dogs as a metaphor. Why do you think he does this?
  3. How do you think unemployment affects conscientious people as opposed to unconscientious people?

 

Post -video discussion:

  • To what extent are computational and cognitive skills important for making money in your country?
  • According to the speaker, people on the right believe that everyone can find a job, whereas those on the left believe everyone is equal. Do you agree with this?
  • Do you agree that people are pack animals?
  • To what extent does a person’s personality effect how the react to unemployment?
  • Do you also doubt that people with “enforced” leisure will / would figure out what to do with their lives?

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Elections / Protests: Kenya

Reading 1: Election / Political campaigning

 

Pre-reading 1: Your life experience – Compare and Contrast

This 2-minute video has no words.

  • compare and contrast this political rally with ones in your country/  that you’ve seen before
  • what’s your linguistic choice to describe what you see

 

Pre-reading 2: Guess what it’s like in another world

Unlike in countries like Australia and New Zealand, Kenyan politics is connected with tribes. Guess / wildly guess some answers to the following questions

  1. How many tribes do you think there are in politics?
  2. How much does the influence of one or another tribe change?
  3. Has there been any shift away from tribal politics in recent history?

Pre-reading 3: Painting the picture

Two main actors in the article you are about to read are “Uhuru Kenyatta” and “Raila Odinga”.

  1. Looking at their names, does one sound better than the other?
  2. Which actor, Kenyatta or Odinga will have more actions (verbs) in the text?
  3. The following actions are some that are used in the text: GUESS whether the actions are linked to the “Kenyatta” actor or the “Odinga” actor
  • Kenyatta / Odinga outperformed (+) a rival presidential candidate
  • Kenyatta / Odinga was seen to be a credible (+) opposition leader
  • Kenyatta / Odinga has campaigned tirelessly (+) against considerable odds (+)

 

Now read the text to answer the questions to pre-reading 2, and see if actions linked to the Kenyatta actor are different in level of positivity  to the actions linked with the “Odinga” character. Text here.

 

 

Reading 2: post-election protests

 

Pre-reading 1: Painting the picture

What’s your linguistic choice for the gapped combinations below

e.g. 1: Kenya falls into violence / Kenya descends into violence / Kenya……. into violence

 

Answers are at the end of the post. Look at them now

Pre-reading 2: What do the actors do?

Now you’ve been exposed to what the actor “Odigna” does in some texts,  have an educated guess what the actors will do

  • “Odinga says”  and / or “Odinga claims”
  • “Protests are held” and / or “protests erupt”
  • “the police used teargas” and / or “The police responded to violence with teargas”  and / or “The police crack down with teargas”

Now read and see (here)

 

Post – Reading 1: Video versus text

Would you use the linguistic choice from the article to describe the protesters / police actions?

 

 

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