Monday, June 27, 2016

Stories below the fold

The good news: Fallujah has been liberated:
the bad news:  AlJ blames the gov't for the refugees' problems.

I read AlJ because their African news reporting is good...
True, they are biased (not just pro Arab Islamicist types but it's editorials are full of well known American leftists) but the bad news is that AlJ is considered one of the least biased news sources in the Arab world.

Maybe "why they hate us" is because there is no "Radio Free Caliphate" out there.

yes there is BBC and CNN Arabian services, but given the open anti American bias I see on CNNInt here in the Philippines, I wonder if they are also biased... if they aren't they will be as soon as the Donald takes over.

and yes we have a CNN Philippines, in English, now. I don't usually watch it: too cheerful... (I prefer the earnest eyed reporters on ABS CBN)


Corruption and murder in Mexico? Don't tell the press.

StrategyPage has the latest, but one wonders about the back story on how the "violent" teacher's protest shot so many policemen.


Conspiracy Theory of the day: The convenient death of a corrupt ex-UN official.

One source told me, “During the trial, the prosecutors would have linked Ashe to the Clinton bagman Ng. It would have been very embarrassing. His death was conveniently timed.”

you don't say.

But my favorite quote in the article:

 Ashe’s lawyer Jeremy Schneider told me he is sure Ashe’s death was an accident. “There is not one iota of evidence that it was homicide. This is nothing at all like Vince Foster.” 
Hmm...does Schneider know something we don't know?


rewrite the history books: rice paddies were use in Japan 2500 years ago.

 I read Garrison Keillor is retiring from PBS, but his writer's almanac podcast is still here.


the "SOME PIG!" news story of the day:

MomJones reports a Chinese superbug has spread from pigs to you... via migrating seagulls.

China uses a lot of antibiotics for their farm animals, but MJ blames the US/multinationals for the problem, since they were the ones who started the practice.

The South Pacific: where satellites go to die.

recent catalog of wrecked spacecraft fragments at the cemetery would list some 145 Russian Progress modules, four Japanese HTV cargo ships, five of ESA's Automated Transfer Vehicles, six Russian Salyut space stations and one Russian Mir space station. Expect many more residents to arrive over the next decade as the ISS completes its multi-decade mission.

 via DavidReneke


Manmade pollution is a major problem, but so is "natural" pollution.

From the WHO:

An estimated 200 million people worldwide are exposed to arsenic concentrations in drinking water that exceed the recommended limit of 10 µg/l1 as set out in the guidelines of the World Health Organization (WHO).2 The majority of this exposed population lives in southern Asian countries such as Bangladesh, Cambodia, India, Nepal and Viet Nam. In addition, elevated levels of arsenic have been found in several countries in Latin America, such as Argentina, Bolivia, Chile and Mexico. Recent estimates suggest that at least 4.5 million people in Latin America are exposed to arsenic levels higher than 50 µg/l – the Bangladeshi threshold.3
a lot of this is from minerals in the ground water, but it is also a side effect of mining.

And one dirty little secret is that brown rice can contain arsenic if it is grown with contaminated water.

Consumer reports on which brown rice is safest.

the good news: Philippine brown rice (such as our family grows and sells) is safe.


erasing history... how many young people know the history of communism? And how many know the story on why it collapsed?


A new film, Liberating a Continent: John Paul II and the Fall of Communism, has just been released. It charts the secret history of the struggle that intensified from the night of that Papal election. It is a story of a Pope, a US President, a British Prime Minster and an assorted bunch of Communist Party bureaucrats and tyrants vying for control of Europe. Whereas this reading of 20th Century European history will come as no surprise to some, to others it will seem an outlandish thesis.

Stalin once quipped: How many (army) divisions does the Pope have?

And here is the answer:

headsup via GetReligionBlog who quips:

Another question: How did John Paul II fail to win the Nobel Peace Prize at some point during that era? Can you think – in this weekend after Brexit – of better symbol of the values of the post-Christian Europe than that strange fact?

the Panama canal 2.0:

wider so larger container ships can go through it. It will help China send stuff via larger ships to the eastern US.

the problem? Many US ports aren't large enough to handle the ships.

a couple days ago, I caught a snippet of Trump complaining about potholes and the deterioration of the US infrastructure.

Well, it's not just potholes on roads: 2015 article has a port official in Charleston warning that  US ports not upgrading to handle modern container shipping.

the article notes that Charleston SC and Savannah are deepening their ports.


And the most important Brexit story of the day:

No, it won't affect Game of Thrones.

backstory: when it started, they got seed money from the EU, but haven't needed it in recent years.

And no, I don't watch it. Too depressing...

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