Am i eligible for British Citizenship
Replies: 38 - Last Post: Nov 27, 2012 4:35 AM Last Post By: nihir450
Sep 29, 2012 3:19 PM
15In all respects i probably don't deserve to be given free tuition along with many others. I'm not sure why Sweden and a few other countries have decided to give free tuition for members of the EU. I'm not sure if they do but perhaps they should put in a system where Swedish citizens get first preference into the courses. I am however extremely proud of my British heritage, i feel just as much British as i am Australian. I'm proud of the sacrifices that my Grandfather made whilst serving for the British army.
I was planning on getting a British passport before i found out that you could study without fees in other countries. So this was not my main intention in getting a passport and perhaps i have not shown this is in the thread and i apologise if i have simply come across as someone who is only interested in exploiting the education system.
I would be happy to pay fees if i was in a situation where i was able to do so. By studying in Europe i will be giving up any help that i get from the Australian government meaning that i will have to completely pay for living expenses by myself as well as any tuition costs on top of that. I don't come from a wealthy family and i will be completely paying my own way. Therefore if i were to study in Europe i would not be able to afford both the living costs and the upfront tuition fees. I do not expect any help from the British government to do this and i am planning on working in Europe for a year and a half beforehand so that i am able to get the funds needed to support my living costs.
Sep 30, 2012 1:06 PM
16Fair enough oliverfisher, it may be just the way you wrote things.
Sweden and every other EU member country must provide the same services to every EU member country's citizens as it does to its own citizens. They don't choose to do so, they MUST do so. The same is true of all EU member countries and that is why as I noted in an earlier response, you get English and Northern Irish jerks applying for an Irish passport (Eire) in order to then qualify as an EU student and study for free in Scotland rather than pay 9000GBP per year to study in Scotland or more if they studied at home.
Scotland does not want to provide a free education for someone from England or Northern Ireland (who applies under an Irish passport) but thanks to the rules of the EU they must do so. Nor are they allowed to give preference to their own people. The criteria for entry must remain the same for all for any EU member country. If they could give preference, the issue would never come up at all. Look at this article and related articles to see how big the issue is.
Whenever a 'loophole' exists, you wil get people who want to take advantage of it. That it is morally wrong doesn't seem to matter much to them at all. There are of course various names we can think of to call such people. None of them flattering.
Now consider this. You as an Australian eligible for a UK passport can study in the UK at any university that will accept you. Not for free however. Yet if you chose to go to Scotland rather than England you would pay less for tuition than you would if you chose to attend an English university. That's simply because Scotland's fees are lower than England's tuition fees. Now would there be anything morally wrong in choosing to go to study in Scotland vs. England in your case? I mean, does it matter than your Grandfather came from Dorset (example) and not Aberdeen (example)?
My answer is this, you are an Australian born of parents who have presumably contributed to the system in Australia and as such have earned you the right, the moral right to any help the Australian education system gives to students. There is a difference between a LEGAL right and a MORAL right. You have a legal right to study in the UK whether it is in England, Scotland, Wales or Northern Ireland. I do not see you as having a moral right however to any kind of subsidizing of that education in the UK and ALL education is subsidized to some extent.
You write, "I would be happy to pay fees if i was in a situation where i was able to do so. By studying in Europe i will be giving up any help that i get from the Australian government meaning that i will have to completely pay for living expenses by myself as well as any tuition costs on top of that. I don't come from a wealthy family and i will be completely paying my own way. Therefore if i were to study in Europe i would not be able to afford both the living costs and the upfront tuition fees. I do not expect any help from the British government to do this and i am planning on working in Europe for a year and a half beforehand so that i am able to get the funds needed to support my living costs."
Read what you have actually written. If you are not in a postion to pay all costs, why do you think you should be able to study in Europe? How does 'giving up' help in Australia have any relevance to whether or not you can afford to pay to study in Europe? One has nothing to do with the other. You plan to work for 1.5 years to get money for your living costs. What are you planning to do to get money for your tuition costs? How do you plan to earn enough in 1.5 years to pay for 3-4 years of living costs? That isn't going to happen and if you then double the amount you will need to also cover tuition costs, it's laughable to expect to earn enough in 1.5 years to cover everything. Oh and don't forget what you earn also has to cover the living costs for the 1.5 years you earn it in.
Here's the thing oliverfisher. You know what you WANT but do not actually have any way of gettting that without someone paying for you. Your parents cannot afford to pay but you WANT it anyway. You belong to the WANT generation and tend to see things from that perspective. Well here's the bottom line. You can't afford it but you can afford (thanks to what the Australian government is willing to do to help you) to study at home.
To write, "I would be happy to pay fees if i was in a situation where i was able to do so." is not a good enough excuse to justify exploiting the education system of another country.
Oct 2, 2012 6:08 AM
Oct 4, 2012 4:44 PM
You have made many fair and justified comments and i do agree with your opinion on the matter and i thank you for the help that you have given me. However i whilst agreeing with your opinion i have found some of your comments extremely disrespectful and verging on bullying. You are of course entitled to your own opinion and you obviously feel strongly on this subject but that does not give you the right to make disrespectful comments. For example,
" You know what you WANT but do not actually have any way of gettting that without someone paying for you. Your parents cannot afford to pay but you WANT it anyway. You belong to the WANT generation and tend to see things from that perspective."
I found this comment extremely disrespectful, this may very well apply to myself but that gives you no right to make comments such as this towards my generation. You are stereotyping an entire generation just based on your opinion. You should never treat someone differently because of their age which is essentially what you are doing here. There maybe a large number of people in my generation who are like this but there are also a large number who are not and i feel it's unfair to make this generalisation. I found this comment both disrespectful and hurtful and i feel you are using your experience to abuse other people rather than being considerate of others.
For that matter i think it's unfair to expect that most teenagers/people in their early 20's will make the moral choice to not study for cheaper if they can. It's hard to expect someone who has basically no form of income to choice to pay say for example 9000 pounds a year when they can get the same education for free, it would take an unusually moral person to make that decision as most people wouldn't feel that strongly.
With the matter of this,
"You plan to work for 1.5 years to get money for your living costs. What are you planning to do to get money for your tuition costs? How do you plan to earn enough in 1.5 years to pay for 3-4 years of living costs? That isn't going to happen and if you then double the amount you will need to also cover tuition costs, it's laughable to expect to earn enough in 1.5 years to cover everything. Oh and don't forget what you earn also has to cover the living costs for the 1.5 years you earn it in."
I will be studying a masters degree and not an undergraduate degree so my course will only be 1-2 years in length. I am only just completing my first year of a 3 year course so i will have another 2 years as well as the 1.5 that i mentioned earlier. I think this would give me sufficient time to save up enough money to live for this period of time. I was possibly thinking of teaching English in South Korea for a year and if i'm not mistaken people are normally able to save around a grand a month from that.
Oct 5, 2012 2:06 AM
19Europe is having a tough time financially at the moment. Everybody (except the very rich) is suffering. No jobs, no job security whilst public services are cut, welfare is cut and people see their living standards drop. Finding a job is neigh on impossible for locals. I cannot see the locals being particularly positive about them paying for your education - so you go to their country, take what they will give (free education) and move on/home.
How realistic do you think it is to come into a region suffering such bad economic times, finding a job with a high enough pay so in a year and a half you pay your living costs AND save for living costs for a further two years ? People with established decent jobs (those who have managed to stay in work) are struggling to keep from debt, let alone save.
And I agree that there is a big big moral aspect to this.
Oct 5, 2012 8:31 AM
20Fair enough about stereotying oliverfisher. OK, remove the last sentence from the quote and leave it at, "You know what you WANT but do not actually have any way of gettting that without someone paying for you. Your parents cannot afford to pay but you WANT it anyway."
I don't see that as being disrespectful, I see it as simply telling it like it is. As I read what you have written, you admit to that.
Moving on, you now write, "For that matter i think it's unfair to expect that most teenagers/people in their early 20's will make the moral choice to not study for cheaper if they can. It's hard to expect someone who has basically no form of income to choice to pay say for example 9000 pounds a year when they can get the same education for free, it would take an unusually moral person to make that decision as most people wouldn't feel that strongly."
OK, let's look at that. I find your use of the word "unfair" interesting. Fair in the context we are discussing here would refer to what is equal or equitable. In other words, everyone should be treated equally regardless of race, religion, nationality or income for example. But in fact, life is not always fair.
You are using the term 'unfair' only in a selfish way. 'It's not fair I am too poor to pay'. 'It's not fair I can't afford an education' Well guess what, that applies to most of the people in the world. You aren't being treated in an unequal way at all. There is nothing 'unfair' about it.
We could also look at what is 'fair' in this case in terms of a fair exchange. So for example if you spend money to buy a product you have a right to get a reasonable quality product in return for your money. That is about what is fair between two parties involved in an exchange of some kind.
You want a country to provide you with an education and are offering that country what in return? Where are YOU being fair in the exchange? Are you planning to stay in that country and give them the benefit of the education they provide you in terms of work and productivity? That's what they usually expect from their own students after all. I don't see any indication you plan on a 'fair' exchange.
So no, I don't think it is UNFAIR to expect anyone to act in a moral way. Fair does not come into it at all. All you are doing is self-justifying a decision. In order to turn the issue towards what is 'fair' you have to look at the two sides involved. You and the government of whatever country you plan to get to pay for your education.
The moral decision has nothing to do with fair. A moral decision is about what is right and what is wrong. Most people have no real difficulty knowing what is right or wrong. Most people are also quite capable of finding a way to self-justify an immoral decision. You are an Australian looking at a way that is legally possible for you to get a free education paid for by the taxpayers of another country. Morally the the right or wrong of that is obvious.
Nor can you try and put the issue on others by saying they would not make the moral decision. That does not justify YOU not making the moral decision. That is one of the weakest (and most common) arguments given for all kinds of wrongdoing. 'Everyone does it, so why shouldn't I?' The answer is, you are not everyone.
You may not like what I am writing oliverfisher but consider this. I don't know you, I have no reason to be against you in any way. From your writing I get the impression you are a reasonably decent person. I'm just holding up the mirror to your conscience.
Never give up your honour for gain. A man without honour is not a man. Find another way that is 'fair' to others and honourable for you.
Oct 6, 2012 5:36 PM
21No practical advice to give but I wouldn't worry about being super moral. It seems like finding loopholes and bending the rules is all part of the game these days. If the world and the 'system' was fair then OK. As it is, if you don't put your own interests first (like most other people) then you are at a disadvantage.
The rules are often unfair, why follow them if you don't have to? Of course theres exploiting loopholes and exploiting loopholes, so i think it's up to you to decide what's moral and what's not.
I don't think it's fair that you should be denied an education that would be available if your parents have cash.
Ideally everyone would have equal access to education, but we don't and until then I'd encourage everyone to put their own interests first and do whatever they can to get the education they want.
Im Australian too and, like anywhere, people here often get away with what they can as long as it isn't technically illegal.
Businesses exploit tax loopholes so often it's normal. Plenty of moral decent small business owners do the same.
People try to avoid inheritance tax by selling a house to their children for say $1000. Pensioners who have plenty of assets and arent poor at all can get pension payments which are meant for the less well off.
I spoke to someone who works at a university here who was telling me that the uni has in some cases found a way around testing for minimum English standards because they want as many overseas students as possible. Tbh we were both a bit drunk and I can't remember the details but it's something like they come for one semester, then go back home for one then reapply.
So I think you would be foolish not to based on morality.
Oct 7, 2012 7:23 AM
22Well all you have written could be said in one sentence desinburma.
'Everyone does it, it's common practice, so why shouldn't I do it?'
An appeal to common practice however is a fallacy. It is a fallacy because the idea that because some or even most people do something, does not make it right, justified or moral. It just makes it a common practice.
Suppose there is an island with 100 people on it. Of the 100, 40 steal but 60 do not. Common practice would therefore indicate that stealing is wrong. Further suppose that a tidal wave hits the island and 30 of the 60 who do not steal die. That would leave 40 who steal and only 30 who do not. Common practice would then indicate that stealing is OK since the majority do it.
As I've already said, self-justification is easy for anyone to do. But self-justification cannot change what you know to be right or wrong. If you think about it, if what you planned to do were right, there would be no need to self-justify it. We know stealing is wrong and no 'common practice' is going to change that.
No one is perfect desinburma and yes I would agree that everyone does some things, some times that perhaps they know to be wrong. They then self-justify having done it. A student cheats on a test and tells him/herself that he knew the answer but just couldn't recall it under the pressure of writing an exam and having their future life perhaps hinge on the outcome in some way. They self-justify their action. Nevertheless, they cheated, they know it and it was wrong.
Situational ethics is the term used to describe things such as the above. ie. Given the situation, my ethics become flexible. But like 'common practice', it cannot justify or make a decision moral.
Like the OP desinburma you seen to see 'fair' as only applying to you personally and not involving others at all. Unfair is anything you don't like. Whether everyone else without money also can't get an education is ignored by you. So are all those without money who find a way to earn the money and get an education. You just want to look at the group who can get an education paid for by their government and say, 'if they can get it for free, why shouldn't I get it too?' The answer is, because they are not you and you are not them. Their situation and your situation are not the same. Just because you wish it were the same doesn't mean you can justify doing something immoral.
Using your situational ethics it would be 'fair' for someone without money to go and take the money from someone who has some. How about I come and take your money from you. It's not 'fair' that you have some and I do not.
Everyone has their own version of what is moral. Some adhere to it and some find ways to self-justify ignoring it. None however can change what is right or wrong. Justify cheating on an exam, stealing a candy bar, cheating on your taxes, cheating on your spouse, ........................ The slippery slope goes on and on.
Everything I have written could be said in one sentence desinburma. Do what is right, do not self-justify what you know to be wrong.
Oct 7, 2012 11:51 AM
23Ethics are hardly a black and white issue. Not unless you are trying to prove a point.
Suppose there is a world with 7 billion people on it. Of the 7 billion, no one steals. Common practice would therefore indicate that stealing is wrong. Further suppose that a meteor wave hits the world and all but 10 people and a grocery store remain. In order to survive, the remaining 10 people resort to stealing resources such as food, water, clothing and whatever materials needed to remain alive and rebuild the human population. That would leave 10 who stole. Common practice would then indicate that stealing is OK since the majority do it.
If you were one of the remaining survivors travelinstyle46, what would you be doing? Looting from the grocery store to survive? Or standing on your soapbox, lecturing others that what they are doing is morally wrong?
Oct 8, 2012 12:43 AM
24I disagree Travelinstyle46 and your summary of my response was wrong.
My post was long and rambling, but my point was definitely not as simple as that. It isn’t about what everyone else does, it’s about what you believe to be moral. Make your own decision; it has nothing to do with laws or what others are doing. Re: your stealing example, some types of stealing are much worse than others. I wonder if you apply the same hardcore morality to business and wealthy people. What about wealthy people who avoid inheritance tax? I think they are less moral than a poor person stealing food from a supermarket. But avoiding tax isn’t considered immoral by most.
This isn’t at all about justifying something that you know is wrong, because I don’t think it is wrong. The system isn’t fair, and it’s basically it’s every man/ woman for themselves. If I could help someone in a third world country get a decent education by exploiting a loophole I sure would.
Obviously many people without money can’t get an education. Some can save up and get there in a few years, others will never have that opportunity. If any of them find a way to get an education, I think they should jump at it. I don’t think OP should say “well there are millions who can’t go to uni because they are poor, I am a lucky one so I will be righteous and work for years to save for my education.” Meanwhile, people whose parents have money can just go straight to university. Does that seem moral to you? Or are you willing to accept immorality when it’s inherent in the system? Hence my examples in my first post.
The system seems to expect people to push the rules as far as they can and I actually think that finding loopholes is a part of capitalism. It might not be the fairest system in the world, but it’s not going to change anytime soon (and there are much worse systems) so I do think it’s moral to play the game in this context.
As 0o0 says ethics aren’t black and white. Would you accuse the vast majority of accountants for big firms of being unethical because they are not giving as much as they could in tax? If not I think you’re applying a double standard.
Oct 8, 2012 1:39 AM
25I would love to do a degree and my local University does a course that quite fascinates me, something I would desperately love to do. I am a UK citizen living in the UK where there are now very high University fees charged. However, I am "older" and under a loophole in the government feee scheme, they government would "lend" me the fees and because of my age/income/status I would never ever have to pay it back (not even my estate after I die).
But I already have a degree (a couple) and doing another different one would be wrong (in my terms) because:
1. I would never be using the new degree to contribute anything back to the people who would end-up paying for it.
2. Taking a lace on a fully subscribed course would be excluding youngsters who want the degree for careers and will use it for the rest of their lives
3. Others would be paying back the fees money to those who are lending it to them (tax payers)
My doing the course would be "self-gratification". I would be "taking" and not "giving" (anything) - and when people start taking such attitudes society starts breaking down. Of course people do it. As others have said, because somebody does something does not make it right and because somebody does something does not mean it becomes right for everybody to do.
So fortunately for society, most people behave taking a moral attitude. And taking that attitude in life does pay you back with dividends. I do voluntary work (with animals) and in social contexts, as people are aware of that they become far more inclusive. When I used to glide (flying gliders), we used to maintain the gliders ourselves over winter - entirely voluntary but I always went once a week on the "maintenance day" and you could see over the summer how those who had helped with the work got included and offered far more opportunities (I ended-up getting flights in the clubs top performance gliders - something few are allowed to do). There is no "behave right and it is taken into account" - just that others become aware without being told and regard you differently which changes things for the better.
Maybe it is not what you do but the basis you make decisions. I don't know but it does affect how things work.
(Sorry for the rambling post).
Oct 8, 2012 10:51 AM
26Desinburma, we are talking about the OP here and no one else. How you would feel about someone from a third world country is irrelevant to this thread. This is only about the OP and him exploiting this 'loophole'.
The OP already has a degree. The OP has access to further education which is subsidized in Australia. The OP is not some poor SOB from a third world country. The issue is real clear.
The OP can further his education at home under the government subsidized program available to him. OR the OP can exploit a loophole and study in Europe for free. Deimosp has given a clear explanation for why he would not take advantage of the system. All talk about the system allows it is meaningless. At the end of the day you either do the right thing or you don't.
What you are never going to do is actually justify doing the wrong thing. I don't care if it is stealing a candy bar when you are a kid or stealing an education when you are an adult.
Oct 23, 2012 8:19 PM
27Travelinstyle46 - OK, I accept that the way I used the phrase “bending the rules” was wrong. I was using it to describe a situation where something is legal but you aren’t supposed to do it (according to some people). But my bad choice of wording doesn’t make my argument invalid- tax avoidance and OP getting a degree in Sweden are comparable to me. Why aren't they?
I am not an anarchist, and I am not someone who is completely against capitalism. But I believe that education (like healthcare) is a right and for these two things everyone should be entitled to the same level, regardless of their wealth. If the current system won’t give someone an education because they don’t have the money, then I will encourage them to do whatever they can to get it. I still haven’t read anything here to convince me otherwise.
Oct 24, 2012 6:48 AM
28OK desinburma let's put it to the test. If you believe everyone should get the same access to education and healthcare here is what you are saying.
Both cost money and someone has to pay for it. If someone from a poorer country does not have the money to pay then you are ready to pay for them. In reality however what that means is that what is available to all will of necessity have to be at a reduced level from what some have access to today.
In other words, no one will get free healthcare and no one will get a free education. There simply aren't enough people to pay for everyone to get it so everyone will have to accept what can be provided to everyone else. Maybe there is enough money to pay for everyone to get basic healthcare and a basic education to say age 14. Happy with what you will get now? I think not.
It is very easy to say 'is a right' when you haven't thought through what you are suggesting in practical terms. In reality, no one has any 'rights' other than those given to them by the society they live in. Talk about basic human rights always assumes it is actually physically possible to provide whatever you suddenly decide is a basic human right. In reality it simply is not possible.
Either you accept that there will always be some who have more than others or you reduce all to the lowest common denominator that can be provided to all. We live in a real world, not in a make believe world.
Oct 24, 2012 10:40 PM
29When I say that it should be a basic human right, I am assuming that it would be possible for everyone to get the levels currently available in the first world IF there were some significant changes in politics. This might be naïve but I imagine that skimming a little bit off defence spending and taxing the rich slightly more (in all first world countries) would bring in enough money for proper education and health worldwide. Of course, this would need to be a collective decision that all first world countries agreed to and that won’t happen.
I'd be really interested in knowing how much money would be needed to provide everyone with an education and healthcare, and what measures would be necessary to generate that money.
Here’s where I am a bit of a capitalist though… I will always put myself, family, friends, acquaintances etc first and would not be willing to sacrifice our own personal advantage to give others their fair share (not that I can see any realistic way of that working). So as long as the system stays as it is, then I believe it’s every man/ woman for themselves.
However, what I would be willing to do is pay something like a “human rights” tax where I pay 5% or even 10% of my income to a worldwide org who then somehow successfully roll out education and healthcare across the whole globe. If such a tax was introduced and was only applied to people earning an above-average income in first world countries (including the super rich) then my guess is there would be enough money. Of course delivering it wouldn’t be easy and would take a long time too.
I don’t think it’s necessary for me to understand politics and international development and have fully thought through the practicalities of how it would work to say that I do believe healthcare and education are basic rights. And I would be willing to put my money where my mouth is.
(4 star Hotel)
From US$114.23 per night
County MeathBook now
(0 star Hotel)
From US$22.30 per night
Stornoway (Steornabhagh)Book now
(0 star Hotel)
From US$25.83 per night