Saturday, 5 July 2014

The data deleted from the United Nations’ last major climate change report and other news and views for Saturday 5 July

  • Data Deleted From UN Climate Report Highlight Controversies – “When the United Nations’ last major climate change report was released in April, it omitted some country-specific emissions data for political reasons, a trio of new papers argue, sounding a warning bell about the global politicization of climate science.”
5-07-2014 Rrome
  • Roman Jokers – A review of Laughter in Ancient Rome: On Joking, Tickling, and Cracking Up by Mary Beard – “Elizabethans joked about cuckoldry and venereal disease. Roman audiences laughed at crucifixion jokes, bald men, and dwarves. The epigrams of the early imperial poet Martial circle back again and again to sniggering innuendos about bad breath and oral sex.”
  • ‘National Security Has Become a State Religion’ - In a SPIEGEL interview, Edward Snowden’s lawyer, Jesselyn Radack, and former NSA contractor Thomas Drake discuss the reasons behind the American spying agency’s obssession with collecting data.
  • The new way of war: killing the kids – “In 1994, on the eve of Rwanda’s genocide, Radio Mille Collines, in Kigali, incited listeners with a venomous message: “To kill the big rats, you have to kill the little rats.” It was a veiled command to murder the youngest generation of Tutsis, the country’s minority tribe. In less than four months, an estimated three hundred thousand children were slashed, hacked, gunned, or burned to death, according to the United Nations. Among the dead were newborns. The Rwandan slaughter was not unique. The specific targeting of children is one of the grimmest new developments in the way conflicts have been waged over the past fifty years.
  • The Middle East and the Return of History - Ever since Francis Fukuyama argued, more than two decades ago, that the world had reached the end of history, history has made the world hold its breath. China’s rise, the Balkan wars, the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001, the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq, the global financial crisis of 2008, the “Arab Spring,” and the Syrian civil war all belie Fukuyama’s vision of the inevitable triumph of liberal democracy.
  • The secret to America’s most “disruptive” supermarket—fruits and vegetables – “Every inch of the traditional track around US supermarkets—from the beautifully lit piles of produce and bounteous bakery section to the inviting prepared foods—has been honed to maximize the grocery industry’s tried-and-true business strategy: Promote the national brands and packaged goods that drive customers in the door, but steer them toward the more-profitable, perishable goods—such as fresh produce—where the supermarket really makes money.
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