Wednesday, 13 February 2008

Tuesday, 12th February, 2008


Blaise Mouga, a member of the Federation Action for the Republic, a party whose leader, Ngarlejy Yorongar, was arrested last week, said the country needed change by any means necessary."Despite our oil, our cotton, our rich farmland in the south, look at how poor this country is," Mouga said. "We want some kind of change. We are not for the rebellion, but we are not for Déby either. The international community might say Déby is the lesser of two evils, but they are not living with him."

As a chemical engineer I have been involved in several biofuel projects in developing countries.
If handled properly, biofuels can be beneficial to the climate, to the economy and to the farmers in developing countries. Negative publications that invariably, but wrongly, link the production of biofuels to the destruction of forests and grasslands will do much harm to those countries that have the potential to become major producers and exporters of biofuels. Among these are some of the poorest countries in the world, like Ethiopa, Angola and Mozambique, countries with an ideal climate for energy crops, barely developed agricultural and industrial sectors and huge areas of unused land. Please, let us not reject the potential benefits of biofuels.

E.R. van Slooten, Maarssen, The Netherlands

"It has made me angry that a perfectly normal, everyday activity which I used to do by the thousand was abused to set off such madness," he [cartoonist, Kurt Westergaard, 73] said. "I have attended to my work and I still do. I think, however, that the impact of the insane response to my cartoon will last for the rest of my life."

"We need to make it clear that free speech implies the right to offend," he
[Flemming Rose, who as culture editor of Jyllands-Posten initially commissioned the cartoons] said. "This is not a Danish issue or a European issue - it is a global concern."

An example of the spreading credit crisis is seen in Don Doyle, a computer engineer at Lockheed Martin who makes a six-figure income and had a stellar credit score in 2004, when he refinanced his home in Northern California to take cash out to pay for his daughter’s college tuition.
Mr. Doyle, 52, is now worried that he will have to file for bankruptcy, because he cannot afford to make the higher variable payments on his mortgage, and he cannot sell his home for more than his $740,000 mortgage.
“The whole plan was to get out” before his rate reset, he said. “Now I am caught. I can’t sell my house. I’m having a hard time refinancing. I’ve avoided bankruptcy for months trying to pull this out of my savings.”

LETTER FROM JAPAN: Modern life threaten's isle's animist traditions
...the association of guardian priestesses has withered under Miyako's new affluence, Hamagawa said. Only 10 remain now.
"There are no inconveniences nowadays," she said. "People can lead easy lives. Health care is advanced. The young today don't believe in much. And we don't have any successors."
"Young people now have jobs," said Tadashi Nakama, director of the Nishihara District Community Center. "In the past, there was only farming, so everybody participated."
With the decline of agriculture, the young found jobs in the island's urban centers or left Miyako altogether. Indeed, on a recent visit, which coincided with the sugar cane harvest, only elderly men and women could be seen cutting down stalks in fields across the island.

PHOENIX, Arizona
State Representative Russell K. Pearce, a Republican from Mesa and leading advocate of the crackdown on illegal immigration, takes reports of unauthorized workers leaving as a sign of success. An estimated one in 10 workers in Arizona are Hispanic immigrants, both legal and illegal, twice the national average.
“The desired effect was, we don’t have the red carpet out for illegal aliens,” Mr. Pearce said, adding that while “most of these are good people” they are a “tremendous burden” on public services.

Prime Minister Yasuo Fukada expressed anger Tuesday over the alleged rape of a 14-year old girl in Okinawa by a U.S marine, calling the incident "unforgiveable".
"Even though this has occurred several times in the past, it has happened again, " Fukada said. "I take this very seriously."

Asked by Tempi magazine if he supported Ferrara's proposal, Berlusconi replied: "I think that recognizing the right to life from conception to natural death is a principle that the UN could make its own, just as it did with the moratorium on the death penalty."
German athletes competing at the Beijing Olympics will not be under extra restrictions on expressing their opinions beyond what is already in the Olympic Charter.
"Our athletes are mature citizens who are aware of their responsibilities, but who can speak their minds," the German Olympic Sports Union said Tuesday.

And the move to the cities seems unstoppable, too. Take for example China, where 44 percent of people live in cities, up from 36 percent in 2000 and compared with more than 80 percent in the United States and Britain, according to United Nations data.
Besides all the building that growth implies, city dwellers generally consume a lot more than their country cousins, and differently. For one thing, they use many more services, providing a counterbalance to manufacturing and exports.

"I have every sympathy with the Scottish hill climber who needs a 4x4 to get around," he [Livingstone] said at the news conference. " There's really no justifiction for owning cars producing this amount of carbon emissions in London."

Stefan Lindemann, shopping editor of the women's weekly magazine Grazia, recently described Regent Street as "a one-street, one-stop shopping experience that has no comparison anywhere else in Europe and finally brings the retail therapy buzz back into the capital."

"Weapons deployment in space by one state will inevitably result in a chain reaction," Lavrov warned. " And this, in turn, is fraught with a new spiral in the earth arms race both in space an on the Earth."...
"The fact that these governments are sending very high-level people to the conference means they want to get things going," said Patrick McCarthy, Coordinator of the Geneva Forum, a tripartite body including the UN Institute for Disarmament Research.
"We're at a rather decisive point where we either move onto substantive negotiations or back to more years of fruitless discussion, " McCarthy said.

Mark S. Fishman was a modern prince of the markets — a pedigreed money manager who raised billions of dollars at the height of the hedge fund boom. But last week his dream collapsed. Hobbled by bad trades in the credit markets, Mr. Fishman began to shut the fund he helped found, Sailfish Capital Partners, which oversaw $2 billion just six months ago, investors said.
On Monday Mr. Fishman, 47, sat in the paneled Princeton Club of New York, explaining what it was like to battle the markets — and lose.
“It feels like someone has died,” Mr. Fishman said, his eyes welling up. “We’ve disappointed people, and there is no one more disappointed than me.”...

“It’s that sad dawning when you realize the market is so much bigger than you are,” he said.

One reason City bankers hate to see their bonuses go down is not directly because of its impact on their quality of life.
It is as much about what their "number" means relative to that of a colleague.
"It's about comparisons." said Jennifer Smith at the University of Warwick, a specialist on pay satisfaction.
Linskell, from Dawsons, agrees. "If they thought that everyone's bonus was down in the same way, they probably wouldn't be quite so unhappy," he said.

The fluffy haired, marshmallow-pink novelist Barbara Cartland and the movie of Virginia Woolf's "Orlando" were the references that Christopher Kane drew on for Tuesday's show.

HARTFORD, Connecticut
A e-mail message in January 2001 from Mr. Ferguson to Mr. Buffett, released in court papers, says: “Warren, just a quick note to let you know why I hesitated a moment when you mentioned the $5,000,000 fee on the reserve transaction. We are indeed charging a 1% fee but for some reason A.I.G. decided to split the deal in to two $250,000,000 tranches one to be registered in 2000 and one in 2001.”
In his closing statement — the first by the defense — Reid Weingarten, who represents Ms. Monrad, put the blame on a low-level, unindicted A.I.G. accountant, whom he said had made an honest mistake that “traveled up the food chain.”
Mr. Weingarten derided the prosecution’s description of the questionable transaction. “You think that’s the first time it’s happened in the economic world of America?” he asked the jurors. “There’s a whole industry that does it.”

John Delaney, Intrade's chief executive, said that roughly $50 million in contracts tied to the 2008 election had changed hands already, which is up from $15 million for the entire 2004 election cycle.

"We have made a decision that the Serbian government will on Thursday, in advance, annul all acts that are against the law that concern a unilateral proclamation of the independence of this fictitious state on Serbian terriotry," Kostunica said. "We shall not allow such a creation to exist for a minute. It has to be legally annulled the moment it is illegally proclaimed by a leadership of convicted terrorists."

The arrests mark China's latest attempts to gain top secret information about U.S. military systems and sales, said Assistant Attorney General Kenneth Wainstein. He described China as "particularly adept, and particularly determined and methodical in their espionage efforts."
"The threat is very simple," Wainstein said at a Justice Department news conference in Washington. "It's a threat to our national security and to our economic position in the world, a threat that is posed by the relentless efforts of foreign intelligence services to penetrate our security systems and steal our most sensitive military technology and information."

From: Mike Oreskes
Date: 12 February 2008 18:02
To: Ian Walthew
CC: Alison Smale
Subject: Re: Blogging with the IHT
Thanks so much for sending your link
I am enjoying your site
mike oreskes
Michael OreskesExecutive Editor
The International Herald Tribune

PESHAWAR, Pakistan
In an interview, Mehmood Shah, a retired brigadier who once served as the chief civil administrator of the tribal areas, said he understood that the military operation was going well and according to plan, despite some difficulties because of the terrain and the harsh winter weather.
He warned that any cease-fire or peace deal with Mehsud before his forces were sufficiently degraded would work against the military's goals. "The army should not be doing a deal, and in the case that they are, it would be a mistake," he said.

The English commissioner for children and a civil rights group have joined in a campaign to ban high-frequency devices that are designed to drive misbehaving children away from shops and other areas.
The "mosquito" devices emit high-frequency noises that is annoying to young ears but generally not heard by people olden than 20. The campaigners say that about 3,500 of the devices are in use.

Italian scientists say they have proved that Napoleon was not poisoned, scotching the legend that the French emperor was dispatched by his British jailers.

Somewhere in the world at this moment, someone has just been abducted, tricked, or coerced into becoming a victim of human trafficking.
Sixty years after the Universal Declaration of Human Rights was proclaimed and two centuries after the end of slavery, there are still millions of people - often children and women - who are held against their will and exploited as child soldiers, sex workers, domestic servants, or forced laborers. This is a crime that shames us all.
If we don't see the consequences, maybe it is because we are not looking. Our appetite for cheap goods and services means that we are all complicit. Let us not close our eyes to this crime any longer. We all have a shared responsibility to take a hard look at our own lives and ask ourselves what abominations we may even now be tolerating or benefiting from.
Antonio Maria Costa, Vienna, Executive director, United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime, on behalf of the International Labor Organization, the International Organization for Migration, the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe, the UN Children's Fund and the UN Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights
Supposedly cosmopolitan Nairobi has now been Balkanized, with whole neighborhoods turned into exclusive reserves of certain tribes. Some have imported murderous thugs from rural areas to protect their own - the Mungiki street gang for the Kikuyus; the Chingororo for the Gusii tribe; and groups taking the names Baghdad Boys and Taliban for the Luo people.

High School grads appear to be the vermin of society, while the more educated are the cream of the crop who can do no wrong. Those of us who are raised on both sides of the tracks know that many poor, under-educated people work long hours and raise decent families, who go on to make their parents proud. Many wealthy, college-educated grads are in rehab multiple times, live on parents' credit cards, and don't have to get up at dawn.
Yes, we can point to statistics, but it is never appropriate to label whole sectors of society as "these people" and "those," Anybody with a high school education knows that!
K.T. Scott, Amsterdam

"A museum or a church is not made to be a prison," Kind said in a telephone interview from Lyon, where Interpol has its headquarters. "You can imagine screening luggage or clothes under machines, or X-raying them. You could imagine a lot of things. You could imagine in churches or cathedrals to put the statues of saints behind iron bars. That would certainly increase security. But is it really the purpose of a museum?"

Having told at least one difficult truth on his way to Europe, Gates should be prepared to tell a few more when gets home. He can start by telling Bush that a good part of the problem in Afghanistan is made in Pakistan, which continues to give Al Qaeda and the Taliban sanctuary. Bush needs a Pakistan strategy - and for that Europe can't be blamed. Gates should also tell the president that so long as U.S. forces are tied down in an unwinnable war in Iraq, there is little hope of winning in Afghanistan.
In a new play at the National Theatre in London, 27 actors perform for 90 minutes without uttering a word. The attraction is "The Hour We Knew Nothing of Each Other," by the Australian playwright Peter Handke. The script has 60 pages of stage directions and no dialogue, although there are bangs, crashes, screams, and laughter. Handke said that the idea came to in him in the 1980s when he found dramatic meaning in the comings and goings in a town square near Trieste, Italy. "Is there much to discover in it?" he said of his play? "I don't know."

No comments: