March 26, 2005

The News Today

Riverbend remembers the start of the Iraq war on the two-year anniversary.

The Guardian reports that nearly four times as many women died in the tsunami as men. Several mechanical factors are mentioned, including likely location of the victims at the time of the incident, though other sources have added that customs of extreme modesty and traditional clothing also hindered women's survival.

Researchers have overcome certain impediments to gene therapy for leukemia that would harness the body's natural killer cells and turn them into seek-and-destroy weapons against cancerous cells.

Hey, Kossacks: Notes from a speech by Seymour Hersh. The ACLU receives documentation of abuse at Mosul.

Representative Louise Slaughter (D-NY) has posted information about her genetic information non-discrimination act over at MyDD for our perusal.

The Nation: Even free trade's most tireless corporate promoters have begun to look at the bright side of tariffs. We're probably going to be hearing more about Venezuela and its president in the years to come as the country's populist leadership continues to stick in the craw of the Bushistas, but what's Hugo Chavez doing over there?

Body and Soul on the relationship of church and state in Argentina and in general, and documented cases of deadly torture in Afghanistan.

Dave Pollard reviews the ideas of Ronald Wright, whose thesis on why civilizations collapse is quite a bit less optimistic than Jared Diamond's. I'm not entirely sure about all the conclusions Wright reaches, particularly the behavioral genetics assumption, but he makes a number of solid and convincing arguments about the fragility our species in relation to its ecosystem.

Billmon talks about why he stopped and then restarted his blogging addiction, and pulls up a couple pointed quotes highlighting the pitfalls of moral relativism.

Mother Jones: The School of the Americas is still going strong under the same management, but with a different name. Another columnist discusses the narrowing of political dialogue, and the large set of unquestioned assumptions that have grown up in the wake of the militarization of US society.

In Angola, a growing outbreak of the Ebola-like Marburg virus has reached the capital, Luanda, though none of those cases represented people who'd been infected in Luanda as yet. An Italian doctor who'd been caring for patients suffering the hemorrhagic fever is now among the dead.

Next year, Medicare premiums may rise 12% for seniors on the program.

Because of profit concerns, Abbott Laboratories will now pull Cylert from the market. Cylert (pemoline) recently came under attack by Public Citizen due to long-running safety concerns that had prompted Canadian and UK officials to ban the drug. I still think it's appalling that the company had to be embarassed into this, and that the FDA didn't put a stop to their marketing of a drug shown to cause acute liver toxicity at unacceptable rates.

The music industry is just now discovering that P2P networks aren't the only way to swap music, a practice that's continued unabated since friends could first swap albums for making mix tapes. For some reason, you'd think that because the party that claims to be the tireless enemy of both frivolous lawsuits and the godless entertainment industry was in power, that they might not allow said industry to run amok suing everybody they could get their hands on. Or at least, I could dream.

Posted by natasha at March 26, 2005 12:49 PM | Recommended Reading | Technorati links |