Wednesday, September 24, 2008

In a recent study released by the World Bank and the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD), economic opportunities for women are still lagging behind opportunities for men in the developing world. Improvements have been made in women health and education, according to the study.

The study calls for investments totaling over US$13 billion a year to achieve gender equality and women empowerment.

Danny Leipziger, World Bank Vice President for Poverty Reduction and Economic Management, said, “gender equality is key for poverty reduction and growth. Progress on women’s education is essential but not enough if we don’t improve women’s access to good jobs and credit lines, to land ownership and to income-generating activities.”

The study Equality for Women: Where Do We Stand on Millennium Development Goal 3? looks at the achievements made by the developing world as laid out by the Millennium Development Goals (MD). These goals are eight international development goals that 189 United Nations member states and at least 23 international organizations have agreed to achieve by the year 2015. They include halving extreme poverty, reducing child mortality rates, fighting disease epidemics such as AIDS, and developing a global partnership for development.

Education has improved in 82 countries out of 122 and are on track to meet their MD goals. However, 19 countries, 13 of which are in Sub- Saharan Africa, are seriously off track to meet their target.

The United Nations will hold a conference on Thursday at the annual session of the UN in New York to discuss the Millennium Development Goals.

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Tuesday, September 30, 2008

George W. Bush vowed to get the USD 700 billion economic rescue plan through congress in a statement to the media made today.

“Yesterday, the House of Representatives voted on a financial rescue plan that had been negotiated by Congressional leaders of both parties and my administration,” Bush reminded the audience. “Unfortunately, the measure was defeated by a narrow margin. I’m disappointed by the outcome, but I assure our citizens and citizens around the world that this is not the end of the legislative process.”

“Producing legislation is complicated, and it can be contentious. It matters little what a path a bill takes to become law,” he continued. “We’re at a critical moment for our economy, and we need legislation that decisively address the troubled assets now clogging the financial system, helps lenders resume the flow of credit to consumers and businesses, and allows the American economy to get moving again.”

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    “I recognize this is a difficult vote for members of Congress. Many of them don’t like the fact that our economy has reached this point, and I understand that. But the reality is that we are in an urgent situation, and the consequences will grow worse each day if we do not act. The dramatic drop in the stock market that we saw yesterday will have a direct impact on the retirement accounts, pension funds, and personal savings of millions of our citizens. And if our nation continues on this course, the economic damage will be painful and lasting.”World and US markets today are up after severe declines yesterday. Most have recovered 30% of their previous losses, meaning that the potential government expenditure was similar to the market losses.

    Bush then said that he knows “many Americans are especially worried about the cost of the legislation.” He then attempted to justify the cost. “The bill the House considered yesterday commits up to 700 billion taxpayer dollars to purchase troubled assets from banks and other financial institutions. That, no question, is a large amount of money. We’re also dealing with a large problem. But to put that in perspective, the drop in the stock market yesterday represented more than a trillion dollars in losses.”

    If passed, the bailout plan would have allowed for the United States government to purchase devalued mortgage backed securities, resulting from the subprime mortgage crisis, from troubled financial institutions. The US Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson said the plan could cost up to $700 billion.

    Friday, January 5, 2007

    An ethical controversy has surged in the United States and elsewhere around nine-year-old Ashley X (her family name has not been released). The disabled girl was operated upon at the request of her parents, to prevent her from growing, menstruating and developing breasts. The parents, who wish to remain anonymous, explain their situation on a blog entitled The “Ashley Treatment”. There have been over 1000 reactions on the blog so far.

    Ashley suffers a condition termed static encephalopathy with marked global developmental deficits of unknown etiology, which means brain damage of unknown cause leading to a kind of static condition. She can make sounds, move her arms and kick her legs, but she cannot change her position, eat, walk, talk etc. Many of these children are in poor health and die young, but Ashley is in good health. For all of these functions she depends on her caregivers. Most of the day she passes watching her surrounding, lying on a pillow. Her parents call her their “Pillow Angel”, “since she is so sweet and stays right where we place her—usually on a pillow.”


    Ashley can continue to delight in being held in our arms and will be moved and taken on trips more frequently and will have more exposure to activities and social gatherings.

    -Ashley’s Mom and Dad

    Ashley’s parents want to keep her at home and care for her themselves, and they want to guarantee their daughter’s quality of life. To this end, they say, Ashley underwent several surgical procedures and medical treatments during a period of three years. To attenuate her growth, Ashley was given high doses of the hormone estrogen. Ashley now measures 4ft 5 (1m 35cm) and weighs around 75 lbs (34 kg), which is below her expected length and weight. Her low body weight and size would improve her comfort, and at the same time facilitate the work of her caregivers.

    Surgery to remove her uterus (a procedure called a hysterectomy) and breast buds were performed, so Ashley does not menstruate and will not develop breasts, both of which parents think only would cause her discomfort. Since high estrogen levels can cause menstrual bleeding and breast development, the surgery was also meant to limit these effects. She also underwent surgery to remove her appendix, because it would be difficult to diagnose appendicitis given Ashley’s low communication possibilities.

    Monday, June 19, 2006

    If Spain wanted a bucket of ice water reality check after their 4-0 crushing of Ukraine they got one for 70 minutes in the rain against Tunisia, Monday.

    After just eight minutes before which Spain had appeared to have left off from their form that destroyed Ukraine Zied Jaizi attacked into the Spanish box. His strong run ended with the ball prodded to Jaouhar Mnari. The Tunisian number 12’s shot was saved by Iker Casillas but he passed the rebound into the turf and over the keeper.

    Spain were behind. And then it started to rain hard.

    For 70 minutes Spain attacked and failed to beat the Tunisian keeper Ali Boumnijel. While he made seven saves the wet conditions made holding the football hard and Boumnijel faced a lot of shots.

    In the first period crosses and corner kicks met heads in the Tunisian box but none of the succession of different foreheads found the target. On 43 minutes Xabi Alonso went closest: his header from a corner was cleared off the line by Anis Ayari.

    As the clock ticked it seemed Spain’s short passing game was the longest route to goal.

    In the end Luis Aragones’s three substitutions can be said to have unlocked the Tunisian defence. On 71 minutes the floodgates opened like the storm clouds had in the Gottlieb Daimler Stadion.

    Joaquin ran down the right and passed to Cesc Fabregas at the top of the area. Fabregas’s first time shot was not particularly powerful but Boumnijel gave up a rebound and in followed Raul. 1-1.

    For his second assist Fabregas then played in Fernando Torres who rounded the keeper for the game winner.

    On 90 minutes Raul chipped to the far post for Torres who then appeared to be tugged to the floor. The young Athletico Madrid striker scored low under the keeper from the spot.

    Torres, who with three goals in two matches became the top scorer at the Fifa World Cup, could have had two more goals in the final minutes from surges through the Tunisian defence. In the first instance the keeper saved well and in the second Torres blasted over.

    The goals though they came late created a scoreline that reflected Spainish dominance of the game. They outshot their opponents by 20 and had 11 more corner kicks. Tunisian players accrued six yellow cards in their attempt to hold back Aragones’s side who also hogged 66 per cent of possession.

    The result meant Spain were through to the round of sixteen of the Fifa World Cup and that Tunisia had to beat Ukraine in their third and final match of Group H if they wanted to join them there.


    • 1 Statistics
      • 1.1 Tunisia
      • 1.2 Spain
    • 2 Table
    • 3 Related news
    • 4 Sources

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    byAlma Abell

    Most of us can remember when we first learned to drive and that wonderful rush we got when we felt the raw power of the engine vibrating through the steering wheel. Likewise, we can also recall that grand feeling of responsibility when we purchased our first vehicle from a local car dealer in Eudora, KS. While these feelings are indicators that we had finally begun grow up, they also show that we are typical Americans with a natural love of the automobile.

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    Unfortunately, auto collisions are an ugly aspect of vehicle ownership and driving which will eventually affect every person who gets behind the wheel. This is not disparaging of any person’s driving abilities, although your skills in this area will certainly be a factor, it is instead a simple matter of statistics. There are millions of cars on our roads every day and the longer you spend behind the wheel of your car the higher the chances that an accident or error will occur.

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    Perhaps the worst problem with wrecked vehicles is the hidden damage that is often overlooked. Some of these problems can be very severe such as a bent frame or under body which create problems with a car that are impossible to eliminate. Others are more devious such as a crack or tear in the steering components or a damaged motor mount. Finding problems such as these require an extremely experienced collision repair shop like Hite Collision Auto Repair that is willing to put out the extra effort to ensure your vehicle is safe to drive.

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    Wednesday, November 8, 2006

    Polish Prime Minister Jaros?aw Kaczy?ski has ordered the pharmaceutical company Jelfa to halt production following revelations that Jelfa had placed mislabelled medication on the market, whose use could be potentially fatal.

    Jelfa distributed vials labelled as Corhydron, a hydrocortisone used to treat allergies and inflammation, but in fact containing Suxamethonium chloride, a drug normally used to cause muscle paralysis during emergency surgery.

    The Health Ministry has appealed to people suffering from asthma or allergies to check their medication and return any Corhydron ampoules they possess to the pharmacy.

    Polskie Radio reports that the mislabelling was discovered a month ago, but Jelfa and the Polish Health ministry did not inform of the problem.

    Prime Minister Jaroslaw Kaczynski ordered Jelfa to halt production until it can assure the Polish Government that it can properly manage its production.

    The Polish Outlook reports that that drug companies in Poland were operating unregulated since December, 2005 as the regulations has expired. The government was putting in place new regulations.

    The owner of Jelfa is AB Sanitas, the largest drug producer in neighbouring Lithuania. The shut-down has been questioned by the Lithuanian Prime Minister Gediminas Kirkilas, who expressed concern over the situation and said that he wants to try to settle the issue diplomatically.

    Tuesday, January 26, 2010

    The mystery of the location of a viewpoint used by English painter John Constable has been solved, after nearly 200 years. The Stour Valley and Dedham Church was painted in Suffolk, England, between 1814 and 1815, but changes to the landscape meant that the spot he chose was not known, despite the best efforts of historians and art experts.

    Now the puzzle has been answered. Martin Atkinson, who works for the National Trust as property manager for East Suffolk, used clues from the painting and looked at old maps to track down the viewpoint. Trees had grown, a hedgerow had been planted and boundaries had moved or disappeared, but Atkinson eventually worked out where Constable had stood. He said, “When I discovered that I had worked out the location where Constable painted this particular masterpiece, I couldn’t believe it. All the pieces of the jigsaw finally fitted together.”

    Atkinson used an 1817 map of East Bergholt, where Constable grew up, as a reference point, but found that the view would have changed not long after the painting was completed. “The foreground didn’t fit at all, it was quite unusual as we know Constable painted it in the open air so he would have been standing in the scene. The hedgerow in his work no longer exists and there’s another hedgerow that runs across the scene today which wasn’t there. When you stand on the road on which he would have stood, and use the oak tree as a reference point, you see the same view. It’s great to see where an old master stood – and be inspired by the same view,” he said.

    Suffolk, where Constable painted many of his finest paintings, is often called “Constable country”. Most, but not all, of the locations that Constable depicted are known. The picture is now housed in the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, Massachusetts.

    Sunday, July 1, 2007

    A young woman was killed Friday night after an accident occurred on a gyrating ride at the Playland amusement park in Rye, New York in the United States. The woman, Gabriela Garin, was a worker at the amusement park, and had worked there for the past seven years.

    The accident occurred near the end of Garin’s shift; as she was loading riders onto the ride. The ride’s new operator, unaware of Garin’s presence, started the ride while Garin was still on it. The new operator then noticed Garin, and shut the ride down in 20 seconds, but Garin had already been ejected from the ride and killed, according to a park spokesperson.

    The ride is an attraction that spins people around in two-seat cars, inside a darkened tent to flashing lights and music.

    This incident is not the first in the ride’s history. In 2004, a seven-year-old from Connecticut managed to free herself from the ride’s restraining bars, and climb onto the front edge of her seat. She fell soon after the ride started. A safety precaution was put in place after this incident, however, the spokesperson acknowledged that it was not followed when Garin was killed.

    The company which owns the ride shut it down, along with two other rides it owns at the park.

    This is the fourth fatality in the park’s history. The park features more than 50 rides, a pool, and a beach. It attracts more than 1 million visitors annually.

    Thursday, May 8, 2008

    An Iraqi Defense Ministry spokesman said that the leader of al-Qaeda in Iraq, Abu Ayyub al-Masri, was arrested Thursday. Al-Masri, also known as Abu Hamza al-Muhajir, was reportedly arrested in the northern city of Mosul, 225 miles northwest of Baghdad.


    There has been no official confirmation or comment from United States forces yet, but news of the arrest was reported on Iraq state television.

    The Iraqi Defense Ministry spokesman, Mohammed al-Askari, told the Associated Press via telephone that, “The commander of Ninevah military operations informed me that Iraqi troops captured Abu Hamza al-Muhajir the leader of al Qaeda in Iraq.”

    Al-Masri, an Egyptian-born militant, took control of Al Qaeda operations in Iraq after former leader Abu Musab al-Zarqawi was killed on June 7, 2006 in an airstrike northeast of Baghdad.

    Major Gen. Abdul-Karim Khalaf, an Interior Ministry spokesman, said that police in Mosul “arrested one of al Qaeda’s leaders at midnight and during the primary investigations he admitted that he is Abu Hamza Al-Muhajir. Now a broader investigation of him is being conducted.”

     This story has updates See US denies arrest of al-Masri, al-Qaeda in Iraq leader 

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