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Index December 2007

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Ungleichheit in den USA auf Rekordniveau …

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… Milliarden für Wall Street-Bosse, sinkende Löhne

Publiziert auf WSWS World Socialist Web Site, Von Patrick Martin, 29. Dezember 2007.

Goldman Sachs, die profitabelste amerikanische Investmentbank, wird diesen Monat nicht weniger als 12,1 Milliarden Dollar in Form von Bonuszahlungen an ihre Führungskräfte ausschütten. Im letzten Jahr waren es noch 9,9 Milliarden Dollar gewesen. Insgesamt wird die Firma 20,2 Milliarden an Löhnen und Gehältern zahlen, gegenüber 16,5 Milliarden letztes Jahr …  Continue Reading…

Pakistan’s fractured polity, who killed Bhutto

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Published on Kashmir Affairs, by Murtaza Shibli, 27th December 2007.

… Although Benazir was portrayed as the modern and moderate’ face of Pakistan who could help fight Jihadists, this fact is conveniently buried that it was her government that helped the formation of Taliban whose legacy continues to ruin Pakistan, Afghanistan and beyond. After her return from self-exile, Benazir went beyond all decency and decorum to appease the US and other Western powers.  Continue Reading…

Peak Oil And Dunbar’s Number

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Published on Countercurrents.org, Peak Oil And Dunbar’s Number, by Peter Goodchild, 29 December, 2007.

Within modern capitalism there is no solution to the problem of oil depletion. Oil energy cannot be replaced with the equivalent amount of “alternative” energy in the required time, so the consequences of oil depletion will be disastrous. Those disastrous consequences are beyond the range of the normal or acceptable issues of political debate. No political contender can win votes by saying that the world is coming to an end. The “end” may be real, but there is no political mechanism to deal with it in the over-crowded and overly complex modern state. Continue Reading…

Krugman on the Democrats

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Published on Selves and Others, by Thomas Riggins, November 26th, 2007, (First posted online November 8, 2007, on Thomas Riggins’ Blog).

… So, the question is, can the Democrats really push forward a progressive agenda even if they have both the presidency and a bigger majority? What will keep them from still failing to solidly push a progressive people’s agenda instead of caving in to pressures from the corporate plutocracy and the military-industrial complex [MIC]” Continue Reading…

Brazil, ILO launch South-South cooperation against child labour

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Published on ILO Internat. Labour Org, (INEWS/07/brazil_childlabour), 14 December 2007. (français and espanol).

The Brazilian Government and the International Labour Organization launch a major new initiative to promote specific South-South technical cooperation projects and activities that contribute effectively to the prevention and elimination of child labour, in accordance with the international obligations of each country.

BRASILIA (ILO Online) – The Brazilian Government and the International Labour Organization (ILO) launched a major new initiative in Brasilia to strengthen the worldwide fight against child labour. Continue Reading…

Severe food shortages, price spikes threaten world population

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Published on the World Socialist Web Site WSWS, by Naomi Spencer, 22 December 2007.

Worldwide food prices have risen sharply and supplies have dropped this year, according to the latest food outlook of the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization. The agency warned December 17 that the changes represent an unforeseen and unprecedented shift in the global food system, threatening billions with hunger and decreased access to food. Continue Reading…

Fact-Based Intelligence Prevails on Nukes and Iran

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Linked with Steering Group of Veteran Intelligence Professionals for Sanity VIPS.

Published on Media with Conscience, by Ray McGovern, December 25, 2007.

For those who have doubts about miracles, a double one occurred today. An honest National Intelligence Estimate (NIE) on Iran’s nuclear program has been issued and its Key Judgments were made public. With redraft after redraft, it was what the Germans call eine schwere Geburt, a difficult birth, ten months in gestation. Continue Reading…

La ratification du Traité de Lisbonne

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Publié par Voltairenet.org, par Silvia Cattori, 20 décembre 2007.

L’Union européenne est consubstantiellement anti-démocratique.

Les dirigeants européens s’apprètent à faire passer en force le Traité de Lisbonne, alors qu’un texte similaire a été rejeté par voie référendaire dans les états membres où une consultation avait été organisée, France et Pays-Bas. Du fait de ce procédé oligarchique, l’Union européenne ne pourra plus être considérée comme une institution d’mocratique, mais elle ne l’a en réalité jamais été, assure le professeur Anne-Marie Le Pourhiet. Continue Reading…

The Rejection Front Wins

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Published on Voltairenet.org, from Beirut , December 24, 2007.

It is no more a complicated issue to know the two parties of conflict in the Middle East. On the one hand, there is a project of American dominance which aims at making the region a farm for the capitals covered by tears and blood of the peoples of the Middle East. On the other, there is a project of opposing, facing and rejecting front that springs out of the will of free life by the peoples of the region. Despite everything that can be said about the new system that holds consequences which make it difficult for the peoples of the region, yet the mutual values that the system holds have flexibility that can be developed to become a new version of a New Middle East signed by all the peoples of the region, especially that the current events on the ground assert today that the American project has reached a deadlock. Continue Reading…

African nations agree to $1bn Indian satellite project

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Published on Computing SA, by Michael Malakata, 22 November 2007.

A critical mass of countries are signing on to a plan for India to invest $1bn in the Pan-African e-Network satellite project, a joint initiative with the Africa Union aimed at developing the region’s ICT infrastructure.

The African Union last year entered into an agreement that calls for the Indian government to supply funds for the project. The Indian government will finance the project over a period of five years through a grant to the African Union. Ethiopia for example, has been given a grant of $2,13m from India for the project.  Continue Reading…

Women bear the brunt of development drawbacks

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Published on SifyNews, by IANS, 20 December, 2007.

New Delhi: The economic boom and high growth rate that the country is experiencing actually spells bad news for women, says a new report.

Titled “Resources Rich Tribal Poor”, the report by international development agency ActionAid, Indian Social Institute (ISI), and LAYA – an NGO based in Andhra Pradesh working on tribal rights issues – says that when it comes to development projects which in turn cause displacement, women are the worst sufferers.  Continue Reading…

Central Asian websites – Cultures, Texts, Arts, Travels, Buyings

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Re-edited tel-quel from our NGO blog of May 9, 2005:

Some of here after mentionned URLs will bring you nearer to Central Asians Culture and Art.

Continue Reading…

Femmes d’Asie Centrale

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Conveyed from our NGO-blog from July 22, 2005, I cannot resist to recommend you again this book in french about women of Tajikistan:

. Continue Reading…

Citizens Of Twelve Hours

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Published on Countercurrents.org, by Wali Laskar, 20 December, 2007.

They are Indian citizens. But their citizenship is limited to twelve hours only. They lose their citizenship for the twelve hours of the night. Thousands of Indian citizens living in Indian soil have been deprived of their citizenship for twelve hours daily for decades. The victims are resident of villages situated in fringe area of about four thousand kilometres long India-Bangladesh International Boundary Lines. There are more than 170 villages along the Indo- Bangla Boundary line right from Kolkata to Tripura. These villages could not be covered by the barbed-wire- fencing erected in the boundary line for technical reasons. The villages have been abandoned. So are the villagers. Everyday when clock strikes six the gates of the barbed wire fence got closed. The State of India abandons its own citizens living outside the fence for the rest of the time till the clock again strikes six in the morning. The gates of Indian State remain open for its citizens for just twelve hour of daytime.

Continue Reading…

Iraq: Outsourcing The War

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Published on Countercurrents.org, by Chris Gelken, 21 December, 2007.

This week a U.S. human rights group filed its second lawsuit against security contractor Blackwater on charges of war crimes, assault and wrongful death. The company, at the center of the infamous Nisoor Square shooting in Baghdad that left 17 Iraqi civilians dead, is further accused of killing an Iraqi salesman on September 9th 2007.

Meanwhile, a U.S. Congressional committee was hearing testimony from a female former employee of U.S. contractor Halliburton. The young woman told the hearing she was drugged and then gang-raped by American workers in her accommodation in the high-security Green Zone in Baghdad in July 2005. Continue Reading…

Is a world wide famine in the works?

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Published on Countercurrents.org, by Thomas Riggins, 21 December, 2007.

Was it just seven years ago that the new millennium dawned? I remember all the talk about how this new era would give us a chance to escape from all the follies of the 20th century. Well, it didn’t take long to realize that all the old follies were still with us, waiting to be repeated.

World hunger is one of them. The last century was dotted with mass famines, all of them man made. Surely the UN and the leading nations of the world would not let that sorry record repeat itself? Continue Reading…

Bomb After Bomb

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Published on Counterpunch, by Howard Zinn, December 15/16, 2007.

Linked with Howard Zinn – USA.

This essay serves as the introduction to Bomb After Bomb: a Violent Cartography, a collection of drawings illustrating the history of bombing by elin o’Hara slavick. o’Hara slavick is a professor of art at the University of North Carolina. More of her visionary work can be viewed on her website. (AC/JSC). Continue Reading…

UN calls for halt to executions

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Published on Amnesty International, 18 December 2007.

The global campaign against the death penalty secured a landmark victory on Tuesday when the United Nations General Assembly endorsed the call for a worldwide moratorium (suspension) on executions.

In a landslide result, 104 UN member states voted in favour of the ground-breaking resolution. 54 countries voted against, while there were 25 abstentions.

Amnesty International welcomes this timely resolution, passed at the UN headquarters in New York City, as a clear recognition of the international trend towards worldwide abolition of the death penalty. Continue Reading…

Farmer up for child labour

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Published on news24 (South AFRICA), 18/12/2007.

Johannesburg – A North West farmer faces prosecution after 16 minors were found working at his farm in Schweizer Reneke, the labour department said on Tuesday.

Department spokesperson Zolisa Sigabi said the farmer would be prosecuted for contravening the law that prohibits the employment of under-aged children.

This after labour officials inspecting the area found the farmer using 16 minors as workers, the youngest of whom was 11-years-old.

“They were being made to carry 50kg bags of fertiliser on their heads and also ploughed sunflower” … (full text).

videos by dailymotion

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Go to Dailymotion.

first you register and then click on ’search’, put a key word (like development etc.) and listen to videos. Here a choice (by the keyword ‘development’):

but there are mostly videos with hot music, fun pictures and development in the sense of fantasy and young people amusement. As I understood, you can upload your own videos.

Canadians Snapping Up American Homes

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Published on NYTimes, by THE ASSOCIATED PRESS, December 15, 2007.

CHANDLER, Ariz. (AP) – Two hours after his flight landed in Phoenix, Calgary resident Doug Farley already was cruising the city’s vast stuccoed suburbs in search of the one attraction Canadians can’t seem to get enough of these days, cheap homes.

There are thousands of them here: almost new, unoccupied and dropping in value. The mortgage meltdown, combined with a surging Canadian currency, has Farley – and many of his countrymen – dreaming of winter golf on grass that’s always green. Continue Reading…

The seduction of indifference, again and again and again

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Published on Online Journal, by Gaither Stewart, Dec. 17, 2007.

Yesterday, I ran into a poem I had read as a student in Germany, written by Luthern Pastor Martin Niem’r, who broke with the Nazis in 1933 and became a symbol of the German resistance. His words prompted me to take a look more closely at the complex subject of indifference he speaks of.

Niem’r wrote the following at war’s end in 1945:  Continue Reading…

Political Market For Midget Europe In The Giant Asia

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Published on Countercurrents.org, by Gaither Stewart, 15 December, 2007.

… For two hundred years Europe has experimented with a political system based on the interplay between the Left and the Right. Basically Left has meant the collective; Right, the individual. The result of this dichotomy is the heart of the European Idea. Today globalization is challenging that coherent system because a globally organized world creates new tensions and new difficulties for the survival of the old ethnic nations. Continue Reading…

On Romney, Mormonism And Islam

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Published on Countercurrents.org, by Ramzy Baroud, 16 December, 2007.

Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney’s speech on December 6th – in which he tried to explain his Mormon faith – was met with a mostly sympathetic reception at George Bush Library in Texas.

The speech has been long anticipated, not so much for its relevance to the pressing debate on the defining role of religion in American politics, and how this undermines the very meaning of secular democracy. It was awaited simply because Romney belongs to the wrong faith. Recent polls indicate that one out of every three Republicans will not vote for Romney because he is a Mormon. Continue Reading…

FCC Proposes Greater Media Consolidation

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Published on Countercurrents.org, by Stephen Lendman, 15 December, 2007.

On October 17, FCC chairman Kevin Martin proposed lifting the 1975 media cross-ownership rule that forbids a company from owning a newspaper and television or radio station in the same city even though giant conglomerates like Rupert Murdock’s News Corp. and the (Chicago) Tribune Company already do. On November 13, he expanded on his earlier plan claiming changes will only allow cross ownership “in the largest markets where there exists competition and numerous voices.” Continue Reading…

again Swiss election schock

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Linked with my yesterday’s post Swiss Federal Counselors’ Elections:

I looked for a link to the old controversial sheep picture and found it onTouch of Xenophopia? (30 July 2007);

On the same blog named ‘Expat-Experience’ is the yesterday’s post Playground Games (13 December 2007); which has a link to the blog ‘the Xpat Files’ with this picture Hee hee – political humor;

.law_order.JPGContinue Reading…

Patterns of Extra-territorial Voting

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Issued by Migration, Globalization and Poverty, by MICHAEL COLLYER AND ZANA VATHI, Working Paper T22, 36 pages, Sussex Centre for Migration Research, October 2007.

Conclusion:

The global survey presented here reveals that migrant voting is far more widespread than has been previously imagined. Even in 2006, writers on this topic believed that only a few countries allowed non-resident citizens to vote (Rubio-Martin 2006:127) but in fact the vast majority of countries for which information could be obtained have electoral systems allowing emigrants to participate in elections. With the exception of the 1990 Convention of the Rights of Migrant Workers and Members of their Families, ratified by only 43 countries, there is no clear internationally agreed obligation for the involvement of emigrants in elections and there is no clear consensus in the limited literature on the desirability of such developments. Continue Reading…

Manifestos on the Future of Food and Seed

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Published on SouthEndPress, by Vandana Shiva, not dated.

  • How are seeds cultivated and saved?
  • How far must food travel before reaching our plate?
  • Who gets paid for the food we eat?
  • Why does our food taste like this?

We live in a world where of the 80,000 edible plants used for food only about 150 are being cultivated, and just 8 are traded globally. A world where we produce food for 12 billion people when there are only 6.3 billion people living, and, still, 800 million suffer from hunger and malnutrition and many more suffer diseases that could be eliminated easily with better food. A world where food is modified to travel long distances rather than to be nutritious and flavorful. Continue Reading…

Swiss Federal Counselors’ Elections

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First my comment: what all this dry news cannot tell is the excitement of a TV live transmission. When Eveline Widmer-Schlumpf finally pronounced ‘yes I accept’, I was as touched as when the Berlin Wall crashed down, in November 1989. This event was the result of a fresh elected parliament showing a real change in our ‘old Swissitude’.

(16.12.07 – This article replaces another one I posted here and retired from the net since):
Swiss MPs reject far-right leader: Swiss parliamentarians have forced far-right politician Christoph Blocher from his cabinet seat, despite his party’s record success in recent polls … (BBC – full text). Continue Reading…

Remember Somalia?

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Published on HPR online, by JOEY MICHALAKES, November 16, 2007.

Since the overthrow of dictator Mohammed Siad Barre in 1991, Somalia has experienced a nearly uninterrupted state of armed conflict between militias loyal to a rival local warlords. After fourteen failed attempts at establishing a unified, sovereign national government, Somalia’s reputation as a failed state also makes it a highly desirable haven for foreign terrorists. Acutely aware of this disturbing possibility, the United States has made the continued pursuit of al-Qaeda operatives the centerpiece of its foreign policy in the region. Continue Reading…

Communalism and Terrorism, Two Faces of the same Coin

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Published on ZNet, by Badri Raina, December 06, 2007.

I write this on the fifteenth anniversary of the demolition of the Babri mosque by fascist hordes of the Sangh Parivar, consequent upon the pogrom set in motion by Advani’s infamous rath yatra.

Few events in the post-independence history of India have outfaced the founding principles of both the Freedom Movement and the Republic as decisively as that wanton and blood-thirsty challenge to the secular state. That was the day on which Mahatma Gandhi was buried ten fathoms deep, and when majoritarian terrorism came to be installed as the new operative version of nationalism. Continue Reading…

India – the Left, rethink or perish

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Published on Tehelka.com and re-published on ZNet, by Praful Bidwai, December 09, 2007.

The Indian Left survived, even extended its influence, in the aftermath of Soviet-style socialism collapse. Yet in one year it has undone this and seriously damaged its credibility as a force which speaks for the underprivileged, the excluded, and which upholds the values and practices of inclusive democracy … Continue Reading…

Refugees Caught Between Deportation And Death Threats

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Published on Inter Press Service, by Ali al-Fadhily, 07 December, 2007.

BAGHDAD, Dec 6 (IPS) – Hundreds of thousands of Iraqis driven out of their country by violence are now faced with detention abroad, or a homecoming to death threats.

More than two million Iraqis, in a population of about 25 million, have taken refuge in many countries. Only a few have won official status as refugees. Most refugees in Syria, Jordan, Lebanon, Egypt and many other countries stay on as illegal residents, facing threats of deportation and imprisonment. Continue Reading…

Justice: Inaction’s fatal price

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Published in The Denver Post, By Michael Riley, Article Last Updated: 11/13/2007.

Delays and missteps in Indian Country criminal cases can give offenders a free pass. The consequences can be tragic.

Zach Gervais and Arthur Schobey weren’t supposed to die.

Both young, both American Indians, the men were killed by assailants who should have been in federal custody for violent crimes they had committed on Indian reservations months earlier. Continue Reading…

Three Years Oil and You

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ESL Basic Facts – Linked with Pentagon backs plan to beam solar power from space.- Published on Dave’s ESL Bio-Fuel, by David DuByne, Feburary 13, 2007.

Let’s Talk about Future Trends, Predictions and Possibilities of Oil

Link: ESL explained (Hubbert Peak Theory).

Oil is a subject filled with big words that even native English speakers don’t understand, so I have designed this ESL class into easy to read simplified English, for anyone on this planet to study from. Continue Reading…

Pentagon backs plan to beam solar power from space

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Linked with Three Years Oil and You.

Published on NewScientist Environment, by Dan Cho, 11 October 2007.

A futuristic scheme to collect solar energy on satellites and beam it to Earth has gained a large supporter in the US military. A report released yesterday by the National Security Space Office recommends that the US government sponsor projects to demonstrate solar-power-generating satellites and provide financial incentives for further private development of the technology.  Continue Reading…

Russian Press Blasts Anglo-Saxon Terrorist Controllers

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Linked with Webster Griffin Tarpley – USA, and with Made in USA.

Published on global research.ca, by Webster Griffin Tarpley, October 16, 2007.

… KMNews: CHECHEN TERROR BOSS ON US STATE DEPARTMENT PAYROLL: KMNews writes: In early August, … Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Chechen Republic-Ichkeria Ilyas Akhmadov received political asylum in the USA. And for his outstanding services, Akhmadov received a Reagan-Fascell grant, including a monthly stipend, medical insurance, and a well-equipped office with all necessary support services, including the possibility of meetings with political circles and leading U.S. media …What about our partners in the anti-terrorist coalition, who provided asylum, offices and money to Maskhadov’s representatives? asks the Russian press agency …  Continue Reading…

There is sanctity in labor

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Published on Capital Ethiopia.com, Editorial, November 2007.

A nation can be assured of developmental success only when each of its citizens can raise levels of individual productivity. The richest nations and also those that are rapidly marching to join them, naturally have high rates of labor productivity per man hour, while the poorer a country is, the lower the productivity of the population.

Would the issue at hand were a rally cry to raise labor productivity rates in our country. Unfortunately, that might be a luxury at this point in time due to the more pressing issue of clearing up the role of work or meaningful occupation in our cultural fabric, which after all was formed under feudalism. Continue Reading…

The neocons’ crazy dream of World War III

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Linked with Rodrigue Tremblay – Canada. – Published on Online Journal, by Rodrigue Tremblay, Nov 5, 2007.

… The two greatest human catastrophes of the 20th century were World War I (10 million deaths) and World War II (62 million deaths).

In February 2002, neocon journalist Norman Podhoretz (a leading warmonger who is currently senior adviser to Republican presidential candidate Rudy Giuliani) wrote an article calling for a new world war. He did it again in an article titled “World War IV: How It Started, What It Means, and Why We Have to Win” (Commentary magazine, September 2004), calling for what he called “World War IV”, i.e. a war against the country of Iran that he demonized by calling its leaders “Islamofascists”, who cannot be trusted with having nuclear weapons as can some other countries in the region that already have them (Israel, Russia, Pakistan, India). Continue Reading…