January 23rd, 2011

  • wemblee

the slap heard 'round Tunisia: the incident that set off the uprising

Slap to a Man’s Pride Set Off Tumult in Tunisia

SIDI BOUZID, Tunisia — Mohamed Bouazizi spent his whole life on a dusty, narrow street here, in a tiny, three-room house with a concrete patio where his mother hung the laundry and the red chilis to dry. By the time Mr. Bouazizi was 26, his work as a fruit vendor had earned him just enough money to feed his mother, uncle and five brothers and sisters at home. He dreamed about owning a van.

Faida Hamdy, a 45-year-old municipal inspector in Sidi Bouzid, a police officer’s daughter, was single, had a “strong personality” and an unblemished record, her supervisor said. She inspected buildings, investigated noise complaints and fined vendors like Mr. Bouazizi, whose itinerant trade may or may not have been legal; no one seems to know.

On the morning of Dec. 17, when other vendors say Ms. Hamdy tried to confiscate Mr. Bouazizi’s fruit, and then slapped him in the face for trying to yank back his apples, he became the hero — now the martyred hero — and she became the villain in a remarkable swirl of events in which Tunisians have risen up to topple a 23-year dictatorship and march on, demanding radical change in their government.

Collapse )


The article seems to imply that getting slapped by a woman, as opposed to a male inspector, is part of what drove Mr. Bouazizi to do what he did, which makes me worried for the women in Tunisia... which made me realize I knew jack-diddly about womens' rights in Tunisia. I also wasn't sure which info to trust, since Amnesty Int'l says the Tunisian gov't likes to pretend it's all about the human rights. I did find this op-ed, which has a lot of interesting info.

And, from 2009: "Tunisian women's rights activist Hmida warns against decline in gains" (Source is Magharebia, which is sponsored by the United States Africa Command, just FYI.)

For more Tunisia news: Radio Kalima, Tunisia's only independent news source.
  • wemblee

Dissident Blogger joins Tunisian interim gov't, Tweets a lot, pisses off everybody

Tunisia’s Inner Workings Emerge on Twitter

TUNIS — Tunisia’s interim government was holding its first meeting since the ouster of the dictator Zine el-Abidine Ben Ali.

Moufida Tlatli, an internationally known Tunisian filmmaker, took her seat as culture minister. Two opposition leaders stepped aside to confer privately. The prime minister confided that he was still in touch with his old boss, Mr. Ben Ali, who had in fact left hoping to return again after a brief hiatus.

And then came the first policy dispute with the holdover members of the old ruling party, known as the R.C.D.: they objected that the new minister of youth and sports, the dissident blogger Slim Amamou, was not wearing a tie.

Collapse )


  • xerox78

First she bans dessert, then she gets you run over!

Exercise, iPods could be causing pedestrian deaths

First lady Michelle Obama’s campaign to get people to exercise outdoors might be a factor in an increase in the number of pedestrian deaths during the first half of last year, according to the Governors Highway Safety Association.

GHSA executive director Barbara Harsha said her organization doesn’t know why there were more deaths in the first six months of 2010 than in 2009, but the increase is notable because overall traffic fatalities went down 8 percent during this period, and the increase ends four straight years of steady declines in pedestrian deaths.

But the “get moving” movement, led by Obama’s “Let’s Move” campaign to eliminate childhood obesity, could be to blame, Harsha told The Washington Examiner.

“There’s an emphasis these days to getting fit, and I think people doing that are more exposed to risk [of getting hit by a vehicle],” said Harsha, who conceded to having no scientific evidence that the Let’s Move campaign has led to an increase in walkers and runners, or deaths.

Collapse )


Highway safety spokesperson blames pedestrian deaths on Michelle Obama’s anti-obesity campaign?

Collapse )



The Madness Will be Televised: Michele Bachmann VS The GOP

Disclaimer: Tea Bagging May Cause Paranoia, Hallucination, Delusions of Grandeur, and Bachmannism

Michele Bachmann's Tea Party Agenda Will Disrupt the GOP
The Minnesota congresswoman has never shied from controversy, but her latest efforts to represent Tea Party interests are disrupting Boehner's push for the Republicans to rule effectively—and threatening the party's unity. By Newsweek's Andrew Romano.

Michele Bachmann has certainly been keeping busy.

Within hours of winning her third congressional term in November, the colorful Minnesota Republican began campaigning for conference chair, the No. 4 position in the House GOP leadership. Why? Because "constitutional conservatives"—like her and, presumably, unlike the rest of John Boehner's team—"deserve a loud and clear voice!" A few weeks later, news leaked that Bachmann would be traveling to Iowa for a fundraiser—and that "nothing," according to her spokesman, "is off the table." Asked whether she was considering a presidential run, Bachmann told ABC News "I'm going to Iowa—there's your answer."

Then on Friday Bachmann announced that even though Wisconsin Rep. Paul Ryan is slated to deliver the official Republican response to President Obama's upcoming State of the Union address, she would be giving her own online rebuttal on behalf of the Tea Party Express "shortly after" Ryan's speech concludes.

Bachmann's post-election maneuvering isn't particularly surprising; the ultraconservative Minnesotan, who by one estimate appears on national cable once every nine days, is always looking for new ways to get attention. But the response her scheming has received in top GOP circles—a response that would best be described as arctic—suggests that the battle between disgruntled, absolutist Tea Party activists (who want to blow the system up) and their more realistic representatives in Washington (who plan to work within it) is only beginning.
Collapse )

Sky Sports are stuck in the 1950s....bears occasionally like to shit in the woods.

Sky Sports presenters score an own goal as microphone picks up sexist diatribe against female linesman - and Apprentice star fierce businesswoman Karren Brady

Sky Sports presenters Andy Gray and Richard Keys were at the centre of a sexism row last night after they questioned whether a female linesman knew the offside rule during a Premier League football match.

The commentators, who apparently believed their microphones were switched off, were recorded making disparaging remarks about Sian Massey, 25, before Liverpool’s Premiership clash with Wolves yesterday.

They also criticised Apprentice star and West Ham vice-chairman Karren Brady who had yesterday written about sexism in a newspaper column.

Collapse )

source: www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-1349729/Own-goal-Mic-captures-Sky-presenters-sexist-diatribe-female-linesman--Apprentice-star-Karren-Brady.html#ixzz1BpHD1R36
the ancient rule of OH DEAR GOD DON'T READ THE COMMENTS AT THE SOURCE has never been more relevant until today
yeah i know it's the daily fail don't judge me.

whatever, women-in-sports haters
Image and video hosting by TinyPic
mus | like a bird in a cage

Worse off after five years of Harper? Depends how you slice the numbers

Michael Ignatieff wants Canadians to ask themselves if they're better off after five years of Stephen Harper at the helm.

The answer — despite Liberal assertions that Canadians are worse off now — is far from clear-cut, analysts say.

At the heart of Michael Ignatieff's attempt to frame the deciding issue for the next federal election is the statement that "Canadians' standard of living has fallen 1.3 per cent since the Harper government came to power."

It's the backbone of an 11-page campaign-style pamphlet released by Ignatieff's team recently, meant to question Prime Minister Harper's legacy after five years in power.

Close watchers of the numbers behind standard of living, however, say the calculations are a bit of a stretch.

Collapse )
Farscape Aeryn

US State Dept Contractor Implicated in Sex Trafficking, Cases Covered Up Quickly & Thoroughly

The whistleblower

A police officer and divorced mother of three, Kathyrn Bolkovac was looking for a fresh start when she signed up as a UN peacekeeper in Bosnia. But when she began to investigate the local trafficking of young girls into prostitution, all the evidence pointed to those she worked alongside.

I had assumed I would be working with elite officers from all over the US, but the people lining up for registration at the training session could be divided into two distinct groups: youngsters whose pimply faces made it hard to believe they had the minimum requirement of eight years' active police experience, and the retiree set.

A company called DynCorp had been employed by the US state department to recruit police officers to serve as peacekeepers with the United Nations international police task force (IPTF) in Bosnia. It was the autumn of 1998 when I saw the ad. The salary was twice as high as any I'd seen as a police officer in Nebraska. My oldest two children, Jake and Sarah, were in college and could use the extra money for tuition. My 15-year-old, Erin, already lived with her dad, the result of a long, ugly custody battle. I would miss her whether I was in Nebraska or Bosnia, but for the first time in a while here was something I was excited about, something I could believe in.

Collapse )


This was originally posted at ontd_f, and I thought that the more exposure this got, the better.

I bolded, but I highly suggest reading the whole thing.