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Hialmar

Political colours

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I read about the American election in the news. To a European like myself, it is confusing, that the Republican Party is symbolised by the colour red, and the Democratic Party symbolised by the colour blue. To me, it is counter-intuitive. Where I live, the Labour Party and the Left Party are symbolised by the colour red and the two conservative parties by the colour blue, and I believe that the same symbolism is true in, for instance, Germany, France and UK.

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I had no idea we were opposite or that other countries even used the same colors to represent conservative and liberal at all. In the United States, I believe it come from one television network's choice several years ago (I can't remember which network or when, although it was in the 1970's or 1980's I think), to use red to represent the Republican Party and blue for the Democratic Party on their presidential election graphics. I can see them using those colors, as they are primary in our flag and national colors. Choosing which color for which party was probably as simple as both Republican and red being with "R" or something similar. Although  I haven't heard the history on that part. 

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This might not work (but in case it doesn't I shall spell the colours). Here in the United Kingdom we have a total of nine parties in Parliament (and when you include the various devolved institutions we have a grand total of 15 parties and in local councils that figures increases to nearly 20) and for the election night coverage, each party is given it's own colour. As of the last election, here's the colours that the BBC used for their graphics

The Conservatives are blue (HTML code 0575C9), Labour are in red (ED1E0E), the Scottish National Party are an off yellow (E1A922), the Liberal Democrats are a darker version (D67837), the Democratic Unionists are brown (C1153D),Sinn Fein are dark green (00623F), Plaid Cymru are a similar green (35773F), the Greens are a lighter green (28A53C) and the Independent member for North Down is pink (D26FBC).

However this has not always been the case, take a look at the 1983 general election map when the Alliance (Liberal and SDP), Plaid and the SNP were given completely different colours to the ones used now.

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11 minutes ago, CardiMuscleman said:

However this has not always been the case, take a look at the 1983 general election map when the Alliance (Liberal and SDP), Plaid and the SNP were given completely different colours to the ones used now.

Blue for conservative and red for Labour are very traditional choices, though, aren't they?

The way TV graphics present the results of smaller parties have changed here too. Different shades of light blue and yellow has been used for many different parties over time, but clear red and deep blue have remained the same for the two big ones on each side of the centre-line.

Edited by Hialmar
changing shades over time
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22 hours ago, ravenweremuscle said:

Yeah this is the only country on Earth I think where it is the opposite.

Well, like Ravenweremuscle said, we in the US just have to be contrary (or as some of our politicians put it, our way is always better, lol). I appreciate the knowledge about how other countries, at least in Europe, do it. 

I'll take this opportunity to say that I really enjoy the increased numbers of non-Americans (USA) on this board. It seems like in the old days under the predecessor sites the vast majority of the guys were Americans, or at least I didn't realize it if they weren't. It makes for a richer experience having more members from other parts of the world. I'm just glad the rest of the world is so good about teaching English even if it isn't their primary language! Even the worst English writer on this board is better than my best at any language OTHER than English. 

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6 hours ago, Kymuscleboy said:

we in the US just have to be contrary (or as some of our politicians put it, our way is always better, lol).

A self-perceived exceptionalism may come in several different guises. If the US believe it is the World-Police, UK believe it defeated Hitler single-handedly (a view which informs Brexit), France believe laïcité ought to be exported to everyone else, and Sweden believe it is its destiny to remind all other countries about Human Rights and gender equality (despite the fact that New Zealand place higher in the former and Denmark in the latter).

6 hours ago, Kymuscleboy said:

It makes for a richer experience having more members from other parts of the world.

I very much agree. On Discord, though, time-zone differences might be a problem now and then.

6 hours ago, Kymuscleboy said:

I'm just glad the rest of the world is so good about teaching English even if it isn't their primary language! 

Before 1945, the first foreign language where I live was German, the second one English and the third one French, but the first two foreign languages switched place in the aftermath of WWII. My grandparents' generation needed a translator, when their emigrant cousins in the US wrote home to the old country. My parents' generation speak English, but with deeply held hesitation. My generation began to learn British English in our third year in primary school. The next generation begin to learn generic English (which in reality means American) at the same age as we did. My personal big problem with English is, how to determine when each of the words 'by', 'of', 'in', 'on' and 'at' ought to be used. They don't have one-to-one counterparts.

Edited by Hialmar
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21 hours ago, Hialmar said:

A self-perceived exceptionalism may come in several different guises. If the US believe it is the World-Police, UK believe it defeated Hitler single-handedly (a view which informs Brexit), France believe laïcité ought to be exported to everyone else, and Sweden believe it is its destiny to remind all other countries about Human Rights and gender equality (despite the fact that New Zealand place higher in the former and Denmark in the latter).

I very much agree. On Discord, though, time-zone differences might be a problem now and then.

Before 1945, the first foreign language where I live was German, the second one English and the third one French, but the first two foreign languages switched place in the aftermath of WWII. My grandparents' generation needed a translator, when their emigrant cousins in the US wrote home to the old country. My parents' generation speak English, but with deeply held hesitation. My generation began to learn British English in our third year in primary school. The next generation begin to learn generic English (which in reality means American) at the same age as we did. My personal big problem with English is, how to determine when each of the words 'by', 'of', 'in', 'on' and 'at' ought to be used. They don't have one-to-one counterparts.

I'm sure most every country has areas where it thinks it is superior to the rest of the world. The problem with the US is that too often that comes with the attitude that our way is the only way, and all other countries can change to match us or piss off (as the British would say). One very important area where the rest of the world changed regardless of the US's refusal to do so is the metric system. I remember as a child in the early '80's hearing that we would have to learn metric and switch within a few years. However, that fell by the wayside. I will say for the purposes of our stories, there is something deeply ingrained when a guy grows past a hundred pound milestone (200, 300, 400 lbs. etc.) or past a new foot in height (6 ft., 7 ft., ) that is just not exciting for me when rendered in metric. Those milestone numbers are not there. I've meant to post a topic on this or ask some European members: are there certain numbers in centimeters or kilograms that signify "big," "tall," "muscular," etc... for you guys? I'd be interested to know what numbers you look for. In fact, now that I've typed this out, I will probably copy it and post the question. 

Time-zones can be a challenge. I have never noticed it too much, as I primarily use the regular board. I don't use live chat very often. 

Teaching of second languages varies in the US, as control of schools is heavily localized to the town or county level, and it varies greatly among the different states, who are the primary funding source of the educational system. When I was in school. no foreign language was even offered until the high school level. That's about 14 years of age if the term "high school" doesn't apply. As most experts will agree, that is far past the prime age to begin learning a language. Starting early like most European and many Asian countries do is a far better way to teach multiple languages. I think things have improved here somewhat, but they are still not teaching foreign languages with the regularity of other countries at the primary education level.  English as a second language can be tricky, as there are so many exceptions to almost every rule. Plus, we have words with multiple meanings, and words that sound similar with slightly different spellings to complicate things. I believe you have  which prepositions to use figured out. I don't think I have ever noticed a mistake. Your English is better than many native speakers'. 

 

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Time zones are my speciality (call it a hangover from the millennium I say). Simple rule of thumb.

When it is breakfast on the west coast of America, those on the east coast are thinking about lunch, people in Europe are thinking about tea and people in Australia are (if they have any sense that is) fast asleep in bed, similarly when the people of the west coast of America are fast asleep, the east coast is pondering the idea of getting up, Europe is already wide awake and pondering breakfast whilst Australia is wondering what to watch before going to bed.

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7 hours ago, Kymuscleboy said:

I will say for the purposes of our stories, there is something deeply ingrained when a guy grows past a hundred pound milestone (200, 300, 400 lbs. etc.) or past a new foot in height (6 ft., 7 ft., ) that is just not exciting for me when rendered in metric. Those milestone numbers are not there. I've meant to post a topic on this or ask some European members: are there certain numbers in centimeters or kilograms that signify "big," "tall," "muscular," etc... for you guys? I'd be interested to know what numbers you look for. In fact, now that I've typed this out, I will probably copy it and post the question. 

I react to Imperial measures as you do react to metric ones. "So-and-so many inches, so what? The figures are incomprehensible, anyhow."

I can't speak for other Europeans or even Swedes. I'm only able to describe my own highly subjective impression, which is as follows:

Any man under the height of 170 centimetres is short.

A man between 170 and 180 centimetres is in the lower end of average.

A man between 180 and 190 centimetres tall is in the higher end of average.

A man over 190 centimetres is impressively tall. The height of Sweden's strongest man is 190 centimetres.

Any man taller than 200 centimetres is reaching the domain of hero-monsters, and it gives me a certain satisfaction, when I write a story, and a protagonist cross that milestone. For a real life example, Hafthór Bjornsson, for instance, is 206 centimetres.

An adult man with a weight under 60 kilogrammes probably suffer from some medical condition.

If someone mention, that their weight is something between 60 and 80 kilogrammes, it doesn't draw my attention. That's very normal.

If someone admit a weight between 80 and 100 kilogrammes, it is either a sign of that they have an overweight problem or has begun to add serious gains at the gym, unless they are very tall.

110 kilogrammes and upwards is the weight I associate with successful bodybuilders. Sweden's strongest man has a bodyweight of 155 kilogrammes.

Hafthór Bjornsson's weight is 192-200 kilogrammes.

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