Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Nepal's Third Gender, Fraudulent Fish, and the Pakistan-China Port Drama (Link Round-Up 5/31/11)


You Forgot About Poland
The growth of Polish power and decline of pro-American sentiment
Under Tusk and Sikorski, Poland has concertedly mended ties with Brussels and Berlin. The majority of Polish emigrants now go elsewhere in Europe, not across the Atlantic. And Germany is now Poland's key foreign policy and economic partner. Polish factories have become integral parts of the German supply chain, and they are profiting from Germany's export-led boom.
Can You Hear Me Now?
Cambodia: the world's most competitive cellphone market?
Only neighbouring Laos, with four operators and a population of six million, and Hong Kong with its six operators competing for nearly nine million people, come close to Cambodia in terms of mobile phone markets in the region, analysts say.
South of the Border
"Eighty percent of the residents in the vast Peten province live off subsistence agriculture," he says, adding that there is little or no help from the government. "The consequence is this: people live poorly, or migrate to the United States, or align themselves with criminal groups in order to get by."
Gender (Norm) Bending
Nepal recognizes third gender
In Nepal, transgender people are legally recognized as a “third gender,” but are often resigned to a life ostracized from their family and community. Typically transgender people from the region are limited to one of three career opportunities: giving blessings at weddings, begging or prostitution.
Nation Rebuilding
Arab democracy won't happen without the non-existent Arab civil society
A stronger civil society alone will not bring about democracy. After all, private organizations can promote illiberal and despotic agendas, as Islamist organizations that denounce political pluralism and personal freedoms demonstrate. But without a strong civil society, dictators will never yield power, except in the face of foreign intervention.
Book Learnin'
Argument: US Literature is too insular and isolated
A writer like Naipaul or Nooteboom or Mulisch or Pamuk or Coetzee speaks to the whole world. Empires fall, refugees stream to their destruction, coherent worldviews melt before the eyes. A reader in Delhi or Caracas picks up these writers, and goes,Aha! I see it. This writer gets my metaphysical loneliness, he sees why I feel lost and confounded in the modern world, why I can find no way around tradition or rebellion to soothe my restless spirit. If he picks up Updike? Nice detail, of suburbia--and certainly a lot of detail about cunt and breast--but you probably have to have lived in American suburbia to have an emotional response to Updike (and Updike is a force among the domestic realists, his derivatives pale in comparison)
Asian Geopolitical Intrigue
India not too happy about China's new port in Pakistan
Gwadar is an ultra-strategic deepwater port in the Arabian Sea, in Pakistani Balochistan, not far from the Iranian border and only 520 km away from the hyper-strategic Strait of Hormuz. Beijing financed close to 80 per cent of the construction of the port via the China Harbor Engineering Company Group. The port is currently managed by Singapore. The lease will end soon - and it will go to China.
Islamabad now wants the Chinese to build a naval base at Gwadar. That will be a monster geopolitical earthquake in a crucial node of "Pipelineistan" as well as the New Great Game in Eurasia.
Hungry?
Packaged seafood fraud: fish mislabeled and sold en masse
The report states that there are around 1700 species of seafood caught around the world for sale in the U.S. with only 2% of the catch being inspected. Some of the more common substitutions include Yellowtail for Mahi Mahi, Tilapia for Tuna, Nile Perch for Shark, and a whole host of fish including Atlantic Cod and Mullet Snapper are often labelled Red Snapper. 
While most fish is mislabelled to get a higher price or to avoid species-specific tariffs there are other cases where the seller is greenwashing their catch.
Brain Drain
70% of Science Award winners from immigrant families
Only 12 percent of Americans are foreign-born, the NFAP report says. Even so, children of immigrants took 70 percent of the finalist slots in the 2011 Intel Science Talent Search Competition, an original-research competition for high school seniors.
Of the 40 finalists, 28 had parents born in other countries: 16 from China, 10 from India, one from South Korea and one from Iran.
Climate Swticheroo
Britain to "run out" of wind if jet streams shift
Meteorologists have found that the position of the jet stream has been influenced by the lower levels of activity on the Sun. This decline in sun-spot activity is expected to continue for the next 40 years, with potentially serious consequences for the viability of wind farms. 
Professor Mike Lockwood, from Reading University, said: “Changes in the jet stream will change the pattern of winds that we get in the UK. That, of course, is a problem for wind power.

1 comment:

alpha male body language said...

"mobile phone markets in the region" This is very interesting and it is good to note that the mobile telephone market in Asia is growing at a very high rate. Most of the products either finds themselves at Africa or Asia as these people are getting use to these technology

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