By Carien du Plessis
Cuban-style revolutionary youth spies could be on every street corner if a National Youth Development Agency plan for compulsory community service is approved.
Agency chairman Andile Lungisa told a press briefing yesterday that people as young as 13 in countries like Cuba have become "defenders of the revolution", keeping a close watch on the activities of people in their neighbourhoods.
( Read more... )
Cuba is a communist country, not a democracy. There, the 'non-revolutionary activities' are specifically defined. In our democracy (let's not criticise its quality right now), we do not have 'principles of the revolution' that we must keep to, so this begs the question on which activities should those young minds report on? So what is it exactly we are helping the youth with? Reminds me of those times when USSR led a propaganda campaign in the 1920-30s about the enemies of communism and how those enemies should be reported to the state to be dealt with, harshly. Or does our charming leading party wants to breed the new generation of Pavlik Morozovs?
Plus, R930 million budget? This is a bigger budget than some government agencies, which do actual work to benefit people, get.
In other news, Apple coughs up for copyright infringement. I'm not the biggest fan of Apple corporation so I'm glad their image is displayed correctly and not through pink-coloured glasses.
Apple has been ordered to pay $19 million to Opti Inc., a technology company based up the road in Palo Alto, for patent infringement.
( Read more... )
ANC president Jacob Zuma cannot be president of the country because he cannot be trusted, Democratic Alliance leader Helen Zille said on Saturday.
"When voters put politicians in power, they must be able to trust them. Without trust, democracy goes bust.
( Read more... )Published on the Web by IOL on 2009-03-07 17:40:22
On a completely unrelated note, I spotted this article about incorporating both the bedroom and the bathroom into one space. The concept of an on-suite bathroom is hardly new, but to enjoy the toilet smells and after bath humidity whilst sleeping is simply not enticing. Colour me an ultra conservative, but that's just me.
There is also an old issue of some expensive NCDs (negotiable certificates of deposits) using teleportation. It starts of with a mysterious disappearance of approximately 8 million South African Rand en-route from the headquarters of one bank to another in Johannesburg. The distance between the two banks? About 10 minutes walking at a leisurely pace. These same NCDs were put to the branch in the Western Cape Province to be cashed out on the same day they went AWOL in Johannesburg, bear in mind we are talking more then 1000km difference between the physical places and back in 2000, when this started not very frequent air trips between the Johannesburg and Cape Town. Of course, everyone has signed off to the fact that they were in Johannesburg and the businessman who has asked for the NCDs to be redeemed has proof of purchase for the these papers. Add to that a grisly death, a persistent heir still trying to redeem the money, a bypass of the Reserve Bank's exchange rules regulations and numerous court dates. I reckon the people who specialise in being Private Investigators in financial matters will have a ball. Who needs a smoky office and people shooting at you?
I did not know that this year is an International Astronomy Year 2009 for South Africa. It seems there is also a solar eclipse on the cards this coming Monday. My neighbour bought a telescope so this will be an opportunity to view a solar eclipse with proper equipment.
There is also the tragic news of the murders of infants and one of the minders in the small town near Brussels in Belgium. I had spent about two, not the nicest months in Belgium and despite my feelings towards certain people there, it is a law-abiding place where such violence, especially towards infants (youngest was 6 months old) is doubly unexpected.
CNN.com offers the first page story about 25 years of Macs. I wonder how much Steve Jobs paid for that little promotion? It took a little scrolling to see this article. It is about reversing the policy that "prohibits U.S. money from funding international family-planning clinics that promote abortion or provide counselling or referrals about abortion services." [CNN.com, "Obama reverses abortion-funding policy", accessed 25.01.09]. This policy has been implemented each time an uneducated, pardon the expression 'hick' like presidents Reagan and Bush reverse it. I applaud the common sense shown by the Obama administration, this is one of those issues that should not be politicised. I believe most women, myself included do not appreciate a mainly male body of politicians deciding about their bodies.
BBC offers a cheerful combination of reporting about violence in the world and more impacts of the global financial crisis. it is interspersed with a cheerful article about a pilot who had managed to land his plane on water after both its engines were crippled by birds . I have done some quick Googling, it is exceptionally difficult and has only been a few times before, where like in this case, everyone had survived.
Also, forlyonza , an academic article about how MUDs were started. It is a bit old, but still interesting to know how.
Back to studying, thank goodness, it is an open-book exam.
By David Espo
History surely will remember President Barack Obama as the first US black to sit in the White House. But success in his term will depend on his accomplishments rather than on the colour of his skin.
He takes office with friendlier majorities in Congress than any chief executive since Lyndon Johnson and confronts economic challenges unrivalled since the era of Franklin Delano Roosevelt.
( Read more... )
Published on the Web by IOL on 2009-01-20 21:29:47
For once, an article that does not choke on hero worship. I like Obama so far, he has shown to be intelligent, self-aware and politically astute. Am I convinced he'll be a good president? He has some really good qualities for making a good president, but only time will tell if that is true. Even the best candidates fail, but with the US being in financial crisis, involved in an unpopular war far from home, having indulged in an aggressive foreign policy, etc I would not recommend to put on those party hats just yet.
Of course, history has a different take on things. It is often kinder to fools then to good men.
( Palin article )
Source for this article here.
I like Matt Damon's response to this far better:
In a widely-circulated interview, Matt Damon said of Palin, "I need to know if she really think that dinosaurs were here 4000 years ago. I want to know that, I really do. Because she's gonna have the nuclear codes."
This amused me greatly:
"Two men were arrested on Thursday and six are on the run after police caught them taking turns in carrying a stolen double bed through East London, police said.
Superintendent Mtati Tana said the group stole the display bed outside a shop in Fleet Street.
"The men were stopped by police for questioning and six immediately ran away, leaving behind the two carrying the bed. It was later discovered that the bed was stolen," said Tana.
The two are expected to appear on Friday before the East London magistrate's court on a charge of theft. - Sapa "
This was even funnier:
"Canberra - A dry-cleaning shop owner in Papua New Guinea has found a unique way of encouraging thieves to clean up their behaviour: giving them a steam cleaning.
Police in the northeast coastal town of Lae said a 20-year-old man suffered burns and scalding to his abdomen, chest and back after the owner turned a steam cleaner on him after he was caught stealing pants worth 14 kina (about R44; $5,50).
"The owner has done this to many people already," police spokesperson Nema Mondiai told Australian Associated Press on Wednesday.
Police seemed unconcerned about the radical punishment and released the thief after being assured he had learned his lesson. "
The rest of the story can be found here.
What did disturb me was the reaction of some Church officials and other politicians. Outright criticisms such as these left me somewhat bewildered: " ACDP president Kenneth Meshoe said Zuma's remarks were "blasphemous", and called on him to apologise. "The unity he is calling for in the ANC will not materialise. It's a sign of God's displeasure (because) of their rebellion and the immorality they are promoting in the country." Referring to the legalisation of abortion and same-sex marriages, Meshoe said Zuma was effectively saying that God "blesses" the killing of innocent babies and homosexual relations."" Zuma was even compared to the Beatles, when they made the statement along the lines that they are more popular then Jesus Christ. DA accused Zuma of demonising other politicians to influence the populace.
Noone has really addressed the issue of the legality of mixing religion and secular life. Some implied it, but in reality, everyone was simply worried about people believing in the wrong kind of message from God about them. This is instead of allowing people to choose their political affiliation for themselves, without the threat of divine retribution for the 'wrong answer'.
I only wonder when was it, that Colombia university turn into a zoo?
I am without any Internet at the flats for 3 days now, their router which has not been the most stable in the past finally keeled over. Of course, they still stubbornly believe it is the service provider not their hardware, but hey, what can we do. Most of my colleagues suffer greatly being great devotees of online gaming and we all use the Net to keep in touch with our loved ones. Sigh, at least this has allowed me to make a significant dent in my media folders. I have officially finished watching the last episodes of "Supernatural". Wow, what a nice twist! I did not expect it from the writers, because this is taking a more long-term approach to the storyline. Hopefully, the show has gathered enough support to carry on in the same vein.
Several articles came from one of my news communities to broaden the horizon and slay boredom. I am concerned about the continual abuse of power by the Bush administration. Heck, if even right-wing radicals are getting nervous..., the article found here.
In other pleasant news, I just found out that to get to the French resort Montpellier will take me the whole of two hours and will cost about 30 EUR. Very reasonable considering the fact I am going to another country.
Now if they could only fix the Internet!!!
P.S. Yet another entertainer not liking the Net. Honestly, denouncing it from a pulpit won't get you anywhere.
So okay, I can sort of understand. the idea that great literature transcends time and issues that it addresses are still relevant in today's world. I just hate the way the university has gone so political, it is one thing to mention the current world issues in the essay question, and quite another to mention SA. The trouble is I could not have told them that even though we are doing better, women are still discriminated against; parental neglect or lack of discipline for children is on the rise, much like the parents of Emma Woodhouse, Anne Elliott or Elizabeth Bennet.
Added to that, the annoyance after reading melraad's blog about that bloody journalist who should be strung up by his privates and left to die near a hungry pack of hyenas. I'm sure Jane Austen would have created a far more deserving fate for the bstd, but what can I say, I'm a bloodthirsty fiend at times.