China Investment Corporation to Europe: Too much welfare has made you slothful and indolent, but you can turn it round

Straight talking from Jin Liqun, head honcho of the Chinese Investment Corporation (China’s sovereign wealth fund). He hits us straight between the eyes speaking to Channel 4

The root cause of trouble is the overburdened welfare system, built up since the second World War in Europe – the sloth inducing, indolence inducing labour laws.

It has to be said, I warmed to the old boy, both for his refreshing directness, and also for his manner. He seemed genuinely puzzled how a region like Europe which has achived much in the past could persistently screw up in the way it is doing. Jin Liqun speaks from 4:31 in the video below, and he really did say sloth inducing 🙂

I was reminded of his words when I read this curious article in the DT on “Teenagers failing to study tough subjects”  What counts as a tough subject, I wondered – they are

English, maths, science, languages and either history or geography

So what the heck are they studying? I can’t think of any subject I could have taken at 16 that isn’t covered there, with the exception of art and music. At school these “tough subjects” were the only subjects available to me! Okay, so they broke out science into Physics, Chemistry and Biology then, and English into English Language and English Literature which is how I got to do 10 O levels. Sadly the DT didn’t enlighten me what people are taking at 16 instead, I have the feeling that this may have something to do with Jin Liqun’s wry observations.