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The fact is that what we're experiencing right now is a top-down disaster. -Paul Krugman
by dvx (dvx.clt št gmail dotcom) on Sun Mar 11th, 2012 at 02:03:36 PM EST
Greek theater rediscovers solidarity in crisis | Culture | DW.DE | 06.03.2012

The economic crisis continues to hit Greece hard, especially in the cultural sector. But theater producers in Athens are returning to "old" values in order to create new, experimental theater.

The cuts have hit hard in Greece, where there is little money left for the cultural sector. Instead of resigning themselves to doom and gloom, more and more artists are joining creative forces. Artistic collectives are booming first and foremost in the field of theater.

Greece has been in crisis since as long as he can remember, mused Nicos Flessas, a 70-year-old dramatic advisor and actor at the Blitz Theater Collective in Athens. Give up? Emigrate like so many others before him? No, not right now. That is also the attitude shared by the founding members of Blitz: Christos Passalis, Aggeliki Papoulia and Giorgos Valais. The three have been working together since 2004 with a permanent workforce of theater professionals such as Flessas.

The fact is that what we're experiencing right now is a top-down disaster. -Paul Krugman
by dvx (dvx.clt št gmail dotcom) on Sun Mar 11th, 2012 at 02:06:45 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Nonhuman Personhood Rights (and Wrongs) | The Primate Diaries, Scientific American Blog Network

Americans take their rights seriously. But there is a lot of misunderstanding about what actually constitutes a `right.' Religious believers are correct that they have a right to freely express their beliefs. This right is protected under the First Amendment to the US Constitution that prohibits Congress from making any "law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof." However, as a result, devout believers feel it is a violation of their rights when intelligent design creationism is forbidden in the classroom or when prayer during school sporting events is banned. After all, shouldn't the First Amendment prohibit the government from interfering with this basic right?

The answer is no and represents an important distinction when understanding what a right actually is. Because public schools are government-run institutions, allowing prayer during school activities or promoting religious doctrines in the classroom is a direct violation of the First Amendment. These activities infringe on the rights of those who do not share the same religious beliefs (or any at all). The key point is that rights are obligations that require governments to act in certain ways and refrain from acting in others. The First Amendment obligates the government to protect the rights of all citizens from an establishment of religion. You may have the right to freely exercise your beliefs, but that doesn't give you the right to impose your views on others in public school.

It was just this understanding of rights as obligations that governments must obey that formed the basis for a declaration of rights for cetaceans (whales and dolphins) at the annual meeting of the American Association for the Advancement of Science held in Vancouver, Canada last month. Such a declaration is a minefield ripe for misunderstanding, as the BBC quickly demonstrated with their headline, "Dolphins deserve same rights as humans, say scientists." However, according to Thomas I. White, Conrad N. Hilton Chair of Business Ethics at Loyola Marymount University in Los Angeles, the idea of granting personhood rights to nonhumans would not make them equal to humans. They would not vote, sit on a jury, or attend public school. However, by legally making whales and dolphins "nonhuman persons," with individual rights under law, it would obligate governments to protect cetaceans from slaughter or abuse.

The fact is that what we're experiencing right now is a top-down disaster. -Paul Krugman
by dvx (dvx.clt št gmail dotcom) on Sun Mar 11th, 2012 at 03:20:30 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Couples Troubles Often Cause Female Sexual Dysfunction: Scientific American

Formerly known as frigidity, female sexual dysfunction (FSD) has always been a controversial diagnosis, and now studies are pointing to relationship dissatisfaction and male performance as risk factors. Just whose problem is this, anyway? New research suggests that broad tactics such as treating a woman's anxiety and improving communication with her partner may be more useful than focusing on the physical mechanics of sex.

Female sexual dysfunction is a broad diagnosis that indicates trouble in one or more of four areas: desire, pain, arousal and orgasm. Controversy about FSD has centered on two key points: whether those who are pushing it as a physiological disorder have something to gain from medicalizing it and whether it reflects society's attempt to pathologize women's naturally variable sexuality. According to sexologist Andrea Burri, author of a study from the U.K. on FSD that appeared in the September 2011 issue of the Journal of Sexual Medicine, "Describing a sexual dysfunction as a physiologically caused abnormality leaves out factors related to the patient's sexual partners and socialization factors. Personally, I believe that we are using the term way too arbitrarily." Although she accepts that some women do have a physiological impairment that can contribute to sexual problems, she thinks that using loose diagnostic criteria lumps far too many women into the category of dysfunction.

Burri's study, which assessed about 1,500 women in the U.K. for FSD, found that 5.8 percent of them reported recent problems with sex, and another 15.5 percent reported lifelong dysfunction. Hyposexual (low) desire was the most common problem overall, and the most common predictor of FSD was relationship dissatisfaction. This finding supports the criticism that the concept of FSD is misleading because it implies that there is something wrong with the woman who "has" it, when in fact it is often the relationship that has issues. The study also found anxiety, experience of abuse and obsessive-compulsive disorder to be common predictors of lifelong FSD.

A study last June also pointed to relationship dissatis­faction as a risk factor for FSD, as well as male premature ejaculation--so in this case, his dysfunction becomes hers, further obscuring the diagnosis.

The fact is that what we're experiencing right now is a top-down disaster. -Paul Krugman
by dvx (dvx.clt št gmail dotcom) on Sun Mar 11th, 2012 at 03:20:50 PM EST
[ Parent ]
How I love science.

It is rightly acknowledged that people of faith have no monopoly of virtue - Queen Elizabeth II
by eurogreen on Mon Mar 12th, 2012 at 06:38:01 AM EST
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Meteorites reveal another way to make life's components

ScienceDaily (Mar. 9, 2012) -- Creating some of life's building blocks in space may be a bit like making a sandwich -- you can make them cold or hot, according to new NASA research. This evidence that there is more than one way to make crucial components of life increases the likelihood that life emerged elsewhere in the Universe, according to the research team, and gives support to the theory that a "kit" of ready-made parts created in space and delivered to Earth by impacts from meteorites and comets assisted the origin of life.

In the study, scientists with the Astrobiology Analytical Laboratory at NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Md., analyzed samples from fourteen carbon-rich meteorites with minerals that indicated they had experienced high temperatures -- in some cases, over 2,000 degrees Fahrenheit. They found amino acids, which are the building blocks of proteins, used by life to speed up chemical reactions and build structures like hair, skin, and nails.

Previously, the Goddard team and other researchers have found amino acids in carbon-rich meteorites with mineralogy that revealed the amino acids were created by a relatively low-temperature process involving water, aldehyde and ketone compounds, ammonia, and cyanide called "Strecker-cyanohydrin synthesis."

The fact is that what we're experiencing right now is a top-down disaster. -Paul Krugman
by dvx (dvx.clt št gmail dotcom) on Sun Mar 11th, 2012 at 03:21:10 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Crown Office refuse to identify judge convicted of benefit fraud - The Daily Record

A JUDGE has been convicted of benefit fraud - but his or her name is being kept secret.

The Crown Office are even refusing to say if the fraudster is a High Court judge, sheriff or justice of the peace.

Legal campaigner and blogger Peter Cherbi discovered he or she was one of six judges convicted of crimes since 2005.

Five were found guilty of road traffic offences but one admitted fiddling benefits while he or she passed judgment on other criminals.

Any idiot can face a crisis - it's day to day living that wears you out.
by ceebs (ceebs (at) eurotrib (dot) com) on Sun Mar 11th, 2012 at 05:33:35 PM EST
[ Parent ]

Doonesbury strip on Texas abortion law dropped by some US newspapers | World news | The Guardian

Doonesbury cartoonist Garry Trudeau has defended his cartoon strip about abortion, which several US newspapers are refusing to run, saying he felt compelled to respond to the way Republicans across America are undermining women's healthcare rights.

The strip, published on Monday and scheduled to run all week, has been rejected by several papers, while others said they were switching it from the comic section to the editorial page.

In an email exchange with the Guardian, Trudeau expressed dismay over the papers' decision but was unrepentant, describing as "appalling" and "insane" Republican state moves on women's healthcare.

About 1,400 newspapers, including the Guardian, take the Doonesbury cartoon. The Guardian newspaper is running the cartoon as normal on Monday.

The strip deals specifically with a law introduced in Texas and other states requiring a woman who wants to have an abortion to have an ultrasound scan, or sonogram, which will show an image of the foetus and other details, in an attempt to make her reconsider.

It is rightly acknowledged that people of faith have no monopoly of virtue - Queen Elizabeth II
by eurogreen on Mon Mar 12th, 2012 at 05:50:49 AM EST
[ Parent ]
US newspapers, under the implicit threath of economic consequences - and individual nuts threathening terror - drops a cartoon critisising nutty christian opinions.

No similarity to Danish papers and cartoons critisising nutty muslem opinions.

Sweden's finest (and perhaps only) collaborative, leftist e-newspaper Synapze.se

by A swedish kind of death on Mon Mar 12th, 2012 at 11:31:49 AM EST
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