Perhaps this is why Farrar’s outfit are so smart:
During a speech on Tuesday in honor of Jewish American Heritage Month, U.S. Vice President Joe Biden told his audience that the Jews “have contributed greatly to America. No group has had such an outsized influence per capita,” inspiring the New York magazine headline, “Biden Praises Jews, Goes Too Far, Accidentally Thrills Anti-Semites.”
But cringe-inducing philo-Semitism is not just a U.S. phenomenon. In a recently published memoir, titled A Collection of Works Written During Leisure Time, Wu Guanzheng, who from 2002 to 2007 was China’s top anti-corruption official, reminisces about his time in Israel. “I bought some books on the Jewish people,” he writes. One, which he cites later, is written by someone with the name “Abraham” and called — you guessed it! – Why Are Jews Intelligent. Read more »
It is bad enough being French so there has to be some blessings…champagne is one…foie gras another…but for the kids it seems they don’t have much incidence of ADHD.
In the United States, at least 9% of school-aged children have been diagnosed with ADHD, and are taking pharmaceutical medications. In France, the percentage of kids diagnosed and medicated for ADHD is less than .5%. How come the epidemic of ADHD—which has become firmly established in the United States—has almost completely passed over children in France?
Is ADHD a biological-neurological disorder? Surprisingly, the answer to this question depends on whether you live in France or in the United States. In the United States, child psychiatrists consider ADHD to be a biological disorder with biological causes. The preferred treatment is also biological–psycho stimulant medications such as Ritalin and Adderall.
French child psychiatrists, on the other hand, view ADHD as a medical condition that has psycho-social and situational causes. Instead of treating children’s focusing and behavioral problems with drugs, French doctors prefer to look for the underlying issue that is causing the child distress—not in the child’s brain but in the child’s social context. They then choose to treat the underlying social context problem with psychotherapy or family counseling. This is a very different way of seeing things from the American tendency to attribute all symptoms to a biological dysfunction such as a chemical imbalance in the child’s brain. Read more »
Are drones effective? Obama is certainly the drone-meister, deploying and utilising drones more than any other president. Of course technology has advanced at a greater pace too. But are they effective?
There’s no doubt that drone strikes can have horrific consequences. Beyond the disputed numbers of noncombatants killed, there are psychological consequences to consider as well. In the Senate hearing, Farea al-Muslimi, an American-educated Yemeni writer and activist, spoke eloquently of the heartbreak and fear that drones cause in Yemen. News reports from Pakistan suggest something similar: People are deeply afraid of drones. These perspectives matter greatly. But they only scratch at the surface of a much bigger problem with how the U.S. government uses drones. At a basic level, are they effective?
Gauging the effectiveness of drones is not simply a question of body counts. It is a larger evaluation of whether the terrorist threat is affected, whether the countries where drones are used are becoming more stable or less, and whether America’s ability to partner with other governments for future counterterrorism missions is improving or getting worse. The human factor, which Congress has focused on recently, is an important part of that evaluation, but it is only one part. In other words: Can we tally up all the costs and benefits of the drone war? Read more »
It seems things are getting desperate for Kim Dotcom. He is now calling home to Germany to try and avoid extradition…pity he won’t go in person.
Why doesn’t he just go to the US and clear his name? What is he afraid of?
Kim Dotcom’s lawyers intend to ask the German government to intervene with the United States and try to block his extradition on criminal copyright charges, German news agency DPA has reported.
London-based Canadian human rights lawyer Robert Amsterdam, who co-wrote a “white paper” released last week criticising the case against Dotcom’s MegaUpload business, told the DPA that Germany had not done enough to assist Dotcom. Read more »
Could it be that unions are going the way of the dinosaurs:
Since the emergence of capitalism, workers seeking higher pay and safer workplaces have banded together in guilds and unions to pressure their employers for a better deal. That has been the approach of the American labor movement for the past 200 years.
That approach, however, has begun to change. It’s not because unions think collective bargaining is a bad idea but because workers can’t form unions any more — not in the private sector, not at this time. There are some exceptions: Organizing continues at airlines, for instance, which are governed by different organizing rules than most industries. But employer opposition to organizing has become pervasive in the larger economy, and the penalties for employers that violate workers’ rights as they attempt to unionize are so meager that such violations have become routine. For this and a multitude of other reasons, the share of unionized workers in the private sector dropped from roughly one-third in the mid-20th century to a scant 6.6 percent last year. In consequence, the share of the nation’s economy constituted by wages has sunk to its lowest level since World War II, and U.S. median household income continues to decline. Read more »
In its annual report to Congress on Monday, the Pentagon accused the Chinese military of mounting cyber attacks on the U.S government and various defense contractors, marking the first time that the Obama administration has explicitly blamed Chinese officials for the country’s offensive cyber activities. The report, which called the cyber attacks a “serious concern,” said that U.S. government computer systems “continued to be targeted for intrusions, some of which appear to be attributable directly to the Chinese government and military.” Read more »
David Shearer appeared on Larry Williams’ show last night to clarify…uhm….er…his…ahhh…position on…um lowering power…um…power prices.
There you go, all cleared up…got it. Read more »
Foreign Policy magazine has a good summary on the increased alert level in South Korea as the nutter in charge of the North Korea continues to play chicken with nukes.
U.S. and South Korean troops increased their military alert level amid indications that North Korea is on the verge of a missile launch that would deliver on weeks of bellicose rhetoric from Pyongyang.
“Based on intelligence we and the Americans have collected, it’s highly likely that North Korea will launch a missile,” South Korean Foreign Minister Yun Byung-se told a parliamentary hearing Wednesday. “Such a possibility could materialize at any time from now.” Read more »
I was on Larry Williams show The Huddle last night with Josie Pagani.
Our topics were:
- The doozy of the day is the Danish politician who got a bit offended by a Maori welcome.
- Then there’s John Key apparently declaring war on North Korea – which he didn’t do. My favourite part of this story is Russel Norman saying we shouldn’t really be backing the US and Australia on this one – does he think we should side with the North Koreans????!!!
- And last but not least, now the Labour party’s getting involved at local body level with its new billboard campaign.
Audio after the break Read more »