Thursday, 16 September 2010

New York Times VOL. CLIX . . No. 55,161

I am clearly forming a habit of documenting what I read. I have trouble simply reading things and then trusting that my brain will retain the information for use later. I guess this is some form of digital hoarding? At least it is better than hoarding IRL, because I watched two episodes of Hoarders last night and I was utterly horrified at the possibility that I could end up like that.

Here's to minimalism and digital preservation... until the Internet falls off the edge of the Earth.

Note: Below is simply my summary of information I have learnt from the articles read, it should no way be considered a reliable news source and you should visit for professional reporting or further information.

Front Page

Afghan Security Growing Worse, Aid Groups Say - Afghanistan is becoming more and more dangerous as more troops arrive. Humanitarian aid is shrinking as more and more provinces become unsafe. The military are operating in "key terrain districts," mostly in the south, where the Taliban are thought to be the strongest. "We are pushing into areas where the Taliban have enjoyed safe haven in the past, and we are taking that away from them," says Major Belinsky, an ISAF spokeswoman. A top coalition general denies that they are losing the fight.

On Anniversary of Sept. 11, Rifts Amid Mourning - the day that usually united Americans together is now tense with religious and political debate over the plans to build a Muslim community centre and mosque close to Ground Zero. "They may seek to spark conflict between different faiths, but as Americans we are not - and never will be - at war with Islam." President Obama said. "It was not a religion that attacked us that September day; it was Al Qaeda, a sorry band of men which perverts religion. And just as we condemn intolerance and extremism abroad, so we will stay true to our traditions here at home as a diverse and tolerant nation." Also, I think the phrase "Go back to X" should be banned from human tongues. It's childish, ignorant and a pathetic way to use one's constitutional rights.

Using Microsoft, Russia Suppresses Dissent - Russian police officers have confiscated many computers from opposition newspapers and environmental groups, like Baikal Wave who were protesting the re-opening of a paper plant that was polluting the lake, with reasoning that they have stolen Microsoft software. However, the timing is suspicious, since action against these organizations often take place during elections or when they are organizing protests against Vladimir V. Putin's decisions. Very shifty stuff and Microsoft does not come off looking good, quite cowardly. Though their position is somewhat understandable that doesn't make their inaction to those who say their software is legal right.

Cool Fact Learned: Lake Baikal in Siberia is the oldest and deepest freshwater lake in the world and holds an estimated twenty-percent of the world's water. Two-thirds of the 1700 species of plants and animals found here can be found nowhere else in the world. Just put this on my seemingly never-ending list of places I want to visit.

G.O.P Leader Tightly Bound To Lobbyists - Representative John A. Boehner of Ohio. He is the House minority leader and would be the speaker of the House if the Republicans win it in November. I have to say that I don't want him to be speaker of the House because I feel that anyone who makes too many promises to lobbyists can only bring trouble, more corruption and stop tough legislation on many companies that brought the US into this mess. He's also well liked by Tabacco lobbyists. This next comment is ignorant but err, nuff said?

Watching the Catwalk, and Clicking 'Add to Cart' - the Internet looks to be only helping the Fashion industry, welcoming in bloggers and giving credit-card wielding fashionistas more access to the once elusive and frightening high fashion world. Many designers will be live-streaming their shows and others, such as Burberry, will allow customers to order items as the walk down the runway. Dianne von Furstenberg has invited a select group of bloggers to purchase, using touch screens, items that are in the store, which I like since as Paula Stutter, the president of the company says, "It's important to sell what's in the store." More practical, too. If Burberry is shipping its Spring collection in seven weeks upon ordering then what will one do for the next four or so months when it's still too cold to wear the Spring collection?
Some luxury-marketing consultants worry that some designers will offend their ties with major shopping houses, like Bergdorf Goodman. Others worry that giving the compulsive and rich, the nouveau riche and those who like paying a lot of interest access to the lines so quickly will tarnish the lines exclusivity, which is where most of the appeal lies.

China Explores A Rich Frontier, Two Miles Deep - Chinese scientists reached the bottom of the South China sea earlier this summer to explore areas rich in oils, minerals and other resources that China wants to mine. Experts say the treasures there are estimated at trillions of dollars worth. Also below the surface are undersea cables (which fascinates me,) lost nuclear arms, sunken submarines and hundreds of warheads. China purchased technology and materials used to make the submersible from the United States and also trained for the dive in Cape Cod, aboard the famous Alvin, the oldest diving craft. This venture is just another rabid development China is making, also concentrating on the industries of supercomputers and jumbo jets.

  • The Egyptian military is incredibly powerful but also seemingly tyrannical. "There are no labor strikes in military society," says General Sowilam in response to the servicemen who were tried, some being acquitted others receiving suspended sentences, for striking over unsafe work conditions. "If they don't want to obey our rules, let them try their luck in the civilian world."
  • "Shadow shogun" Ichiro Ozawa, the former head of Japan's governing Democratic party, who is largely considered a Rasputin-like figure, has announced his bid for prime minister. His campaign for prime minister is his "last service" for Japan, which doesn't help rumors of his ailing health.
  • Five American Health Workers who belong to the Allen Temple Baptist Church AIDS Ministry in Oakland, Cali. have been arrested in Zimbabwe for allegedly not carrying the right paperwork to dispense the four-month supply of antiretroviral drugs that would benefit about 800 people. Their lawyer denies the accusations and their arrest is due to a soured relationship with a Zimbabwe charity, whose new leader called the police. They should be released soon (when the police finish the paperwork) and only charged a fine. The AIDS epidemic is severe throughout Zimbabwe and the country's broken health care system often fails to treat people in need.
  • 70 people have died in Kashmir over the summer after violent protests broke out when a teenager was killed when struck by a tear-gas canister.
  • To join the European Union, Kosovo was pushed to deal with its wartime past and prosecute atrocities committed by Serbs during the 90s war. Nine men who served during the war were indicted in connection with the killings of ethnic Albanian civilians on May 14, 1999. They fired large numbers of rounds into civilians backs as they ran away and the burned the bodies to conceal the evidence. Other crimes committed during the war, which occurred due to Kosovo seeking independence from Serbia, included rapes, beatings, burning of property and plundering. Top officials, military and police commanders were also tried by the United Nations war crimes court.
  • 85 inmates escaped from a border prison between Mexico and Texas. The guards are suspected of helping the inmates escape, 201 in total have escaped this year. Most are believed to be connected to the drug gangs operating in Reynosa.
  • Inflation is occurring in China due to its economy growing, however this hinders many citizens whose wages have not increased, retirees on fixed income or those trying to enter the workforce.
  • Prime Minister George Papandreou has declared that his government has won the battle against his country's bankruptcy. He will be reducing taxes, creating 200,000 jobs by issuing licenses for wind farms and solar parks and opening up closed professions, like truck drivers and pharmacists. Though I don't really understand that. More reforms are coming in condition with its European Union partners and the International Monetary Fund who have lent the country $139 billion dollars.
  • North Korea has suggested to South Korea that they set up reunions for families who were separated during the war, some family members have not seen each other for 60 years. South Korea is curious as to the Norths motives, since the South has refused to resume aid shipments and other talks until the North apologizes for the sinking of South Korea's warship which killed 46 sailors. North is still denying its involvement, yet its proposal for reunions came when the South was debating how much aid it should provide for North Koreans affected by floods. The South are pleased at the request, since they are usually the ones who propose the reunions.
  • There has been an increase in families living in shelters from 2007 to 2009. Most shelters have strict rules and the dramatic change in lifestyle is damaging to children and adults mental health.
  • PG&E has the public rallying against them due to the natural gas explosion that occurred earlier last week, after it has been revealed that the pipes were in desperate need of new pipe, the old pipe having not been worked on since 1948. People are still missing and the death toll has risen to six deceased.
  • Bostonians are now mourning the loss of their beloved Filene's basement building now that the site has not completed production of its tower with a new Filene's basement since it was razed in 2005. Boston Mayor, Thomas M. Menino, is threatening to revoke the building permits if construction does not resume this month, not excepting a smaller plan proposed instead because it does not do anything worthwhile for the city. "It shows arrogance on their part," Mr. Menino said. "They could care less about Boston and that bothers me to no end."
  • Tax Provisions in Health Law... I still don't understand what's going on. I shall keep my eye out for more information in future publications.
  • Chicago's mayor, Richard M. Daley comes off well-adjusted and reasonably likable, though he is complained about and his polls are low. He is not running for Mayor again and says, "I have a lot of confidence in myself and confidence in the belief that I can be replaced. (Kind of arrogant, I guess) Everybody's replaceable in life." Decent save.
  • Tension grows in the central Los Angeles district of Westlake due to a recent shooting of a Guatemalan immigrant when he threatened a cop with a knife. Locals feel the shooting was unjust. Immigrants are also unsatisfied with the United States they expect to find. The neighbourhood is overcrowded and most don't understand the laws that would be acceptable and respectable in their hometowns, like selling goods on the street. Immigration has become less about fleeing guerillas and more about finding work to afford to eat. Though their lifestyle is unsatisfying, most do not want to return because they would go hungry back home.
  • Graeter's, an ice cream company that was founded in 1870 is now going coastal, ready to tackle Haagen-Dazs and Ben & Jerry's. Though it is a risky move, the company feel confident, especially after an Oprah Winfrey approval in 2002 when she declared it was the best ice cream she had ever tasted. I'm looking forward to seeing some in New York stores or its very own store.
  • A hostile Kentucky man, who had become increasingly hostile towards neighbors, pursued his wife with a shotgun after he became enraged over the way she cooked his eggs. He killed her and his step-daughter, and crossed seven lawns shooting at neighbours, and killed three. As the police arrived, an hour later, he shot himself. I am always disappointed when I hear of these kinds of killings. There is something about the instantaneousness of it all that seems so inhuman. I wish he had received some help before he acted on his rage.
And to finish, a quote from David Dortort, a creator, writer and exec-producer of Bonanza who broke television stereotypes of women and minorities in sometimes controversial but always thoughtful scripts, who died last week: "Once you establish the harmony that exists in the dramatic arts, you can entice, educate and entertain."

Well, that was fun... but that was the Sunday paper and so that was only the Front Page. I have yet to read the rest of it. Wow.

I'm thinking of possibly establishing a trend of getting one Sunday paper a month until I get better at reading and sorting out the information that is important to me and what isn't, what's interesting to me and what isn't (which is how adults read the paper, right?) Then twice a month and then, ooh, maybe a Sunday paper a week. I know I should probably encourage the paper industry to die off, but I can't say I want it too. It's such a dear human habit that I want to be a part of.

Maybe I'm just under the delusion that "No day is complete without The New York Times."


J said...

Lake Baikal would be a great place to visit. My eyes scan over it each night when I look at my World map. It was mentioned under the 'World Facts' bit. Not the warmest place in the World but definitely worth a visit - and it's on the Trans-Siberian Railway.

I think using interesting facts is a good way to explore the World, particularly the natural world. I've been on Australia's deepest lake, Lake St. Clair in Tassie (only 190 metres deep) but to get there I walked about 60kms and got to see a whole heap of other cool stuff, including Tassie's highest mountain.

On another note, I also find submarine cables intriguing! I had honestly never considered how information flows around the World until that cable got broken back in 2008 and I subsequently checked out Wiki. Very cool!

Chris in the Studio said...

Had a great laugh at the digital hoarding bit. Still laughing. Sometimes you're quite funny Caitlin.

I hope news papers don't go the way of the music biz. I really do love me some Sunday times with coffee. Especially on rainy Sunday's. Its like a snuggle with your smart and cute best friend. :)

Greg said...

I used to get the local Sunday paper every Sunday. I probably didn't miss more than one or two Sundays a year, for several years. Then the paper basically went out of business and converted to a strictly digital format. It really isn't the same. So.. I say, keep reading your Sunday paper for as long as they keep printing it.

ADB said...

I used to read newspapers when I was younger, but it all gets very boring when you get older. It's the same old stories with different peoples names. I mean, in the next few months I can garuantee there will be some big political scandal, someone famous cheating on their partner, and someone famous "kicking the bucket" (dying, for those unfamiliar with the phrase).