The bits of Magna Carta that David Cameron won’t want taught in schools

Plus: Does a dirty football team indicate a crime-ridden country?

21 June 2014

8:00 AM

21 June 2014

8:00 AM

The not-so-great charter

David Cameron wants every child to be taught about Magna Carta. Some bits he might want to leave out:
— ‘If one who has borrowed from the Jews any sum, great or small, die before that loan be repaid, the debt shall not bear interest while the heir is under age.’
— ‘No one shall be arrested or imprisoned upon the appeal of a woman, for the death of any other than her husband.’

Foul play

Is there a correlation between bad behaviour from a country’s football team and violence in the country as a whole?

Homicides per 100,000 people
Ukraine 4.3
Romania 1.7
Croatia 1.2
Iceland 0.3
Bulgaria 1.9
Fouls in World Cup qualifying
Ukraine 186
Romania 164
Croatia 156
Iceland 153
Bulgaria 148
Germany 0.8
Spain 0.8
Homicides per 100,000 people
Georgia 84
Italy 79
Northern Ireland 76
Germany 70
Spain 58
Fouls in World Cup qualifying
Georgia 4.3
Italy 0.9
Northern Ireland 1.0
Germany 0.8
Spain 0.8

Source: Fifa/Nationmaster

Baby steps

Labour wants to introduce four weeks’ paid paternity leave. Here’s how paid maternity leave compares in developed countries:

Czech Republic 4 years
Sweden 16 months
Germany 12 months*
UK 12 months
Canada 50 weeks
Italy 22 weeks
France/Spain 16 weeks
Japan 14 weeks
USA None†

*14 months for single parents
†Except in California, New York and a handful of other states

Suffering for their art

Harrison Ford was injured by a spaceship door while making a Star Wars film. These were the accidents on film sets reported over four years to consultants Actsafe:

General stuntwork 69
Wire work/ratchets 45
Martial arts 23
High fall 16
Acrobatics 14
Driving 12
Work with horses 8
Fire 8
Aerial work 6
Motorcycle 6

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  • Keith Appleyard

    Re the listing of “paid maternity leave” – I noticed at least one mistake, in that you said that the UK gives 52 weeks paid maternity leave – actually we give 39 weeks paid leave, and an option of a further 13 weeks unpaid leave.
    Checking with the OECD, I saw some similar discrepancies for other
    countries, such as Germany, where you said 12-14 months, and the OECD says 14
    weeks, Canada where you said 50 weeks, and the OECD says 17 weeks.
    The OECD also calculates the “Full Rate Equivalent”, ie what is the total
    maternity pay expressed as a % of the average national wage : in this it varies
    from 100% in Germany & Spain, down to the UK at 22.5%.
    When you multiply the period of maternity pay by the amount of pay, that
    gives you a better ranking of the benefit received (assuming a mother takes a
    standard 12 months off work) expressed as the average annual wage :
    1. Czech Republic : 28wks @ 70% = 38%
    2. Italy : 21.7wks @ 80% = 33%
    3. Spain : 16wks @ 100% = 31%
    4. France : 16wks @ 98.4% = 30%
    5. Germany : 14wks @ 100% = 27%
    6. Japan : 14wks @ 66.7% = 18%
    7. UK : 39wks @ 22.5% = 17%
    8. Canada : 17wks @ 46.8% = 15%