There’s a good chance you’ve never heard of Jeju Island, even though it’s a newly named “Wonder of Nature,” a UNESCO Global Geosite, and an incredible spiritual, culturally and ecologically unique land.
It’s also “cursed” with the geostrategic disadvantage of being just about the perfect place for the U.S. military to build an anti-ballistics missile defense base, to keep us safe from China.
Locals are protesting the construction, but they’re running out of time.
Read Robert Redford’s plea to save Jeju Island, and then visit SaveJejuIsland.org to help.
Posts tagged Current Affairs
All About ACTA
It’s not over yet. #SOPA and #PIPA are one thing. The international version is #ACTA, the Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement. The agreement has been signed, while existing mostly in secret, by most of the world, with notable exceptions including the EU.
The act is an attempt to create international standards for intellectual property rights enforcement.
You can look at what is assumed to be the current final form of the agreement, which has been leaked, here. The text has otherwise not been made public; in the US, a Freedom of Information Act request has been denied on the basis of classification for national security. Of course this information was not too classified for those who had a hand in creating the act, a group representing US-based multinational corporations which include International Intellectual Property Alliance (coalition of seven trade associations), The Gorlin Group (Washington “consultancy”), Time Warner Inc. (media company), Eli Lilly and Company (pharmaceutical company), Cisco Systems, Inc. (consumer electronics), The U.S.-China Business Council (nonprofit org), Anheuser-Busch Companies, Inc. (beer), Merck & Co., Inc. (healthcare), National Foreign Trade Council, Inc. (business organization), Sidley, Austin, Brown & Wood LLP (representing the biotechnology industry), Entertainment Software Association (computer and video games), CropLife America (crop protection and pest control products), Global Intellectual Property Strategy Center (consulting service representing gauge-manufacturers Thomas G. Faria Corporation), Recording Industry Association of America (recording industry trade org), IBM Corporation (technology), Intellectual Property Owners Association (trade association for owners of patents, trademarks, copyrights and trade secrets), Motion Picture Association of America, Inc. (movies), John Wiley and Sons, Inc. (publishers), General Motors Corporation (automobiles).
And that was just the Industry Trade Advisory Committee On Intellectual Property Rights that was involved. There are three other other committees, totaling 93 other members of the business elite who have access to the “classified” details of the act we as citizens are not allowed to see, for our own security.
This video is a chart.
Singapore just signed it together with the US & other countries. NOOOOOOOOO…
Featuring our dear Prime Minister. Al Jazeera, if only you weren’t booted off the cable networks years ago for that certain documentary. Thankfully, access to your website is still untouched, for now.
Plastic Circulating Endlessly in Oceans Killing Huge Numbers of Birds, Turtles, Fish and Marine Animals
That plastic bottle or plastic take-away coffee lid that has 20 minutes of use can spend decades killing countless seabirds, marine animals and fish, experts reported here this week.
On remote Pacific island atolls, diligent albatross parents unknowingly fill their chicks’ bellies with bits of plastic that resemble food. The chicks die of malnutrition, and when their bodies decay all those plastic bottle tops, disposable lighters, and the ubiquitous bits of plastic detritus get back into the environment in a cruel perversion of ‘recycling’.
There is now so much plastic in the oceans it is likely that virtually every seabird has plastic in its belly if its feeding habits mean it mistakes plastic bits for food. The same is true for sea turtles, marine animals or fish, experts say.
Northern fulmars, a common seabird numbering in the millions, have acollective 45 tonnes worth of plastic bits in their bellies, estimates Jan Andries van Franeker, a biologist with the Institute for Marine Resources and Ecosystem Studies at the University of Wageningen in Holland.
At least 95 percent of fulmars in the North Sea where van Franeker has been working for three decades have one to several dozen bits of plastic in their stomachs. The same is true for related species like the tiny Wilson’s storm petrels, which unknowingly transport an estimated 35 tonnes of plastic from their wintering grounds in the North Atlantic to breeding grounds in the Antarctic, he says.
“If a seabird’s feeding habits mean it could mistake plastic for food, then it will likely have plastic in its stomach,” he said in an interview at the week long Fifth International Marine Debris Conference, which ends Friday in Honolulu, Hawaii.
It has been 10 years since the last international marine debris conference and the hope is that industry, civil society, researchers and policy makers will find common ground on the strategies and best practices to assess, reduce, and prevent the impacts of marine debris.
“I sometimes have this kind of dream or nightmare where those fulmars drop all of that plastic on an audience in big conference room like this,” van Franeker told IPS.
“It would make a very clear statement.”
From an Arab Spring to a Russian Winter?
Tens of thousands thronged to a Moscow square across the river from the Kremlin Saturday to protest alleged electoral fraud and urge an end to Prime Minister Vladimir Putin’s rule, demands repeated at other rallies across the country in the largest public show of discontent in post-Soviet Russia.
Image: Olga Maltseva / AFP - Getty Images
A photo from the protests.
Scales continue to tip in the rich’s favor the world around.
Income inequality — the gap between a society’s richest members and its poorest — is rising not only in the United States but in most of the world’s major economies, according to a new report from the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development.
Since 1985, income inequality has grown more pronounced in 17 of the 22 countries for which the OECD has long-term data, including Mexico, Italy, Japan, Australia, Canada and the United Kingdom.
The OECD’s report suggests an explanation for why the Occupy Wall Street movement has grown from a single protest site in New York’s Zuccotti Park to a global phenomenon with hundreds of chapters in dozens of countries. Among other things, protesters in the Occupy movement say they oppose the concentration of wealth in the hands of fewer and fewer people.
In the United States, the incomes of the very highest earners have grown by leaps and bounds over the last quarter century, while remaining more or less flat for the vast majority of the population.
Comparable growth in the wealth gap has taken place in Germany, Finland, Israel, Sweden, Luxembourg and New Zealand, according to the OECD. Only five countries — Greece, Turkey, France, Belgium and Hungary — saw their levels of income inequality decline or remain constant.
Income inequality has been linked to a number of troubling economic trends, and some analysts believe the wealth gap is contributing to the slow rate of recovery for the global economy.
Earlier this year, a study in the newsletter of the International Monetary Fund suggested that a country is more likely to enjoy a sustained period of growth if it has a relatively equitable distribution of income — meaning that for the wealthy, high-inequality nations named in the OECD report, bouncing back from the worldwide recession may be taking longer than it needs to.
Income inequality has also been cited as a catalyzing factor for a number of protest movements around the globe, including the riots in England this summer and the Arab Spring uprisings in the Middle East on which the Occupy Wall Street movement has been patterned.
An OECD press release notes that income inequality, besides affecting the wealthy member-nations of the organization, is also a major concern in many of the developing countries outside of it. The correlation between a nation’s wealth gap and its poverty and social and political instability was suggested earlier this year, when The Atlantic published a world map color-coded by inequality. China, Brazil, Rwanda, Uganda, Cote d’Ivoire and Serbia all had high levels of income inequality — as did the United States.
The bodies of most of the models H&Mfeatures on its website are computer-generated and “completely virtual,”the company has admitted. H&M designs a body that can better display clothes made for humans than humans can, then digitally pastes on the heads of real women in post-production.
today, everyone’s an asshole
You know society’s standards of beauty are unrealistic when actual human beings can not achieve them.
A still frame captured from video of a suicide bomber in Sri Lanka blowing himself up. The bomber was a member of the Tamil Tigers, a terrorist organization which waged war against the Sri Lankan government for 26 years.
This picture, taken a split second after the bomb exploded, shows the innocent bystanders just before they were either injured or killed.
14 people died and 35 more were wounded in this attack.
Matara, Sri Lanka - March 10, 2009.
Think twice about becoming vegan
In today’s trendy artsy world, more and more young people are becoming vegan every single day. The reason most of these people become vegan is for the protection and welfare of animals. They encourage vegan meals, no meat, cheese, dairy, eggs etc. What most vegans do not realise is that there is a dirty underworld to the growing and manufacturing of this disgusting world trade that is kept well hidden from society.
Above is a picture taken in Indonesia of a carrot being prepared and slaughtered. The carrots are first skinned, then drowned, and can be eaten raw or are cooked in boiling water.
Also above is a disturbing picture of potatoes being ripped from their home. The preparation is the same as the carrots.
Bananas grow together in a herd. When they ripen, they are stolen from their family, and whilst they are still alive their skin is peeled back and their entire body is usually in eaten in about 6 bites.
/being a massive unfunny smartass
I’m sorry. I still love my meat, milk and eggs. PETA will never stop me.