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November 2009
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Archive for November, 2009

Poe and nothing more

Saturday, November 28th, 2009

Listen to Lou Reed on Poe’s poem : “The Raven” :

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The Raven  (extrait)

Once upon a midnight dreary
as I pondered, weak and weary
over many a quaint and curious
volume of forgotten lore
while I nodded, nearly napping
suddenly there came a tapping
as of some one gently rapping
rapping at my chamber door
“‘Tis some visitor,” I muttered
“tapping at my chamber door
only this and nothing more.”

Muttering I got up weakly
always I’ve had trouble sleeping
stumbling upright my mind racing
furtive thoughts flowing once more
I, there hoping for some sunrise
happiness would be a surprise
loneliness no longer a prize
rapping at my chamber door
seeking out the clever bore
lost in dreams forever more
only this and nothing more

But the raven never flitting
still is sitting silent sitting
above a painting silent painting
of the forever silenced whore
and his eyes have all the seeming
of a demon’s that is dreaming
and the lamplight over him
streaming throws his shadow to the floor
I love she who hates me more
I love she who hates me more
and my soul shall not be lifted from that shadow
nevermoor

 


 

raven.jpg?w=240&h=300

 


 

 

 

«The Raven – Le Corbeau», par Lou Reed et Lorenzo Mattotti, trad de l’américain par Claro, Seuil, 192 p., 28 euros.

Hunger in U.S. at a 14-Year High

Saturday, November 28th, 2009

The number of Americans who lived in households that lacked consistent access to adequate food soared last year, to 49 million, the highest since the government began tracking what it calls “food insecurity” 14 years ago, the Department of Agriculture reported Monday.

The increase, of 13 million Americans, was much larger than even the most pessimistic observers of hunger trends had expected and cast an alarming light on the daily hardships caused by the recession’s punishing effect on jobs and wages.

About a third of these struggling households had what the researchers called “very low food security,” meaning lack of money forced members to skip meals, cut portions or otherwise forgo food at some point in the year.

The other two-thirds typically had enough to eat, but only by eating cheaper or less varied foods, relying on government aid like food stamps, or visiting food pantries and soup kitchens.

One figure that drew officials’ attention was the number of households, 506,000, in which children faced “very low food security”: up from 323,000 the previous year. President Obama, who has pledged to end childhood hunger by 2015, released a statement while traveling in Asia that called the finding “particularly troubling.”

Analysts said the main reason for the growth was the rise in the unemployment rate, to 7.2 percent at the end of 2008 from 4.9 percent a year earlier. And since it now stands at 10.2 percent, the survey might in fact understate the number of Americans struggling to get adequate food.

The food stamp rolls have expanded to record levels, with 36 million Americans now collecting aid, an increase of nearly 40 percent from two years ago. And the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, passed last winter, raised the average monthly food stamp benefit per person by about 17 percent, to $133. Many states have made it easier for those eligible to apply, but rising applications and staffing cuts have also brought long delays.

Problems gaining access to food were highest in households with children headed by single mothers. About 37 percent of them reported some form of food insecurity compared with 14 percent of married households with children. About 29 percent of Hispanic households reported food insecurity, compared with 27 percent of black households and 12 percent of white households. Serious problems were most prevalent in the South, followed equally by the West and Midwest.

taken from : http://www.nytimes.com/2009/11/17/us/17hunger.html?_r=1&src=twt&twt=nytimes

Gap between low and high earnings widens

Saturday, November 28th, 2009

 

The gap in earnings between the highest and the lowest paid in Ireland is widening.

A report issued by independent think tank TASC examines the distribution of wealth and income in Ireland.

The report also found that 20% of people in the country are living in households where the combined income is less than €20,000.

http://www.rte.ie/news/2009/1118/tasc.html?utm_source=twitterfeed&utm_medium=twitter

Australia apologises to the “Forgotten Australians”

Saturday, November 28th, 2009

 

On estime qu’ils furent près de 500.000. On les appelle les «Forgotten Australians», les «Australiens oubliés». Ce sont ces centaines de milliers d’enfants victimes de violences dans des orphelinats ou des foyers d’accueil publics australiens entre 1930 et 1970.

L’Australie avait déjà présenté ses excuses l’an passé aux milliers d’enfants aborigènes retirés de force à leurs familles à des fins d’assimilation.

Le Premier ministre Kevin Rudd a étendu lundi la reconnaissance de ces abus à l’ensemble de cette génération volée. En 2004, un rapport du Sénat avait recommandé cette démarche de repentance envers ces enfants victimes d’abus en tous genres, sexuels notamment. Environ 7.000 d’entre eux étaient des Britanniques déplacés en Australie dans le cadre d’un programme mis en place entre 1920 et 1967 par les autorités de Londres. Celles-ci avaient envoyé près de 130.000 enfants pauvres, âgés de 3 à 14 ans, vers l’Australie, le Canada, la Nouvelle-Zélande, l’Afrique du Sud et ce qui était alors le Zimbabwe, avec la promesse que leur vie y serait meilleure. Nombre de ces enfants avaient été envoyés à l’étranger par des agences spécialisées qui souhaitaient peupler les anciennes colonies avec des gens de «bonne souche britannique blanche», selon l’association. La plupart ont fini dans des institutions publiques ou des établissements agricoles.

Excuses de la Nation

L’Australie est «désolée pour cette tragédie, cette tragédie absolue, des enfances perdues», a-t-il lancé devant un millier de «Forgotten Australians» survivants réunis au Parlement, déclenchant un tonnerre d’applaudissements.

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Warning on obesity in Northern Ireland

Saturday, November 28th, 2009

http://www.rte.ie/news/2009/1116/obesity.html?utm_source=twitterfeed&utm_medium=twitter

Most people in Northern Ireland could be obese by 2050 if immediate action is not taken, according to a report.

The problem could spiral to unmanageable levels, the Northern Ireland Assembly’s health committee warned.

Up to 60% of men and half of women could be badly overweight with massive strain on healthcare budgets.

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The committee’s report said: ‘Growing levels of obesity will continue to generate enormous costs to society, particularly the health and social care sector in the years ahead.

‘Given this and the potential for significant cost benefits, we believe it is imperative that substantial and sustained resources are provided to implement the new life course strategy.’

Committee chairman Jim Wells said: ‘The committee was shocked at the prevalence of obesity in our society.

‘The health complications that are associated with it affect all of our people, both young and old.’

The committee urged that funding be earmarked and not consumed by other emerging priorities.

It called on the Public Health Agency to make tackling obesity its top priority and bring together all government bodies. The report also said the PHA should maintain a central database of projects.

The report recommended that the NI Department of Health should commission an urgent audit of obesity-related initiatives so examples of good practice can be rolled out more widely.

The report added: ‘We call on the minister (Michael McGimpsey) as a matter of urgency to undertake a comprehensive review of weight management services at all levels for adults and children.’

The paper also highlighted the need to develop a broad strategy to tackle obesity across different population groups.

Mr McGimpsey said obesity was blamed for thousands of lost working days and cost the Northern Ireland economy £500 million per year.

Mr McGimpsey said tackling the issue was a priority for the future and he said he welcomed all advice on combating obesity.

Girls ‘becoming Facebook addicts’

Saturday, November 28th, 2009

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Parents fear their daughters are becoming addicted to social networking sites, a girls’ school leader says.

Girls seem to be “permanently connected” to sites like Facebook and Bebo, president of the Girls’ Schools Association Jill Berry said.

This issue now tops the list of parents’ worries by some way, she told the association’s annual conference.

Mrs Berry also argued that girls’ interest in fashion should not be mistaken for being “shallow”.

The leader of the girls’ private school association said there was no contradiction in girls being interested in fashion and wanting to be seen as intelligent feminists.

“Girls can be highly intelligent and interested in being seen to be attractive – the two aren’t mutually exclusive.

“Caring about physical appearance and fashion and wanting to look good doesn’t have to be a betrayal of some feminist ideal. I love shoes but it doesn’t make me shallow. Girls can have fun and also be taken seriously.”

‘We hate x’

Mrs Berry, who is head teacher of Dame Alice Harpur School in Bedford, highlighted concerns about girls spending too long on networking websites.

“They [parents] worry about the addictive nature of networking sites and the fact that their daughters seem to be permanently connected.

“They ask us what to do about their daughters being on the receiving end of ‘We hate x’ sites or ‘honesty boxes’ where comments about each other can be posted anonymously,” she told the conference.

These problems had overtaken their concerns about the girls’ face-to-face contact in school, she said.

Mrs Berry added: “Our schools now need routinely to advise parents about internet safety, in addition to working to educate the girls and to encourage them to be responsible in their relationships on and off line.

“We do have to educate girls – we can’t simply protect them.”

A Facebook spokeswoman said: “It’s equally convenient to characterise TV and video game usage as time-consuming distractions.

“Yet there’s academic research that touts the benefits of these activities and services like Facebook. Regardless, it’s in the hands of users, to define priorities and decide how to spend their time.”

She added that Facebook had a range of safety tips to ensure users remained safe online.

These include, users being careful to only accept friend requests from people they know and to report any messages or profiles that look suspicious.

taken from

http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/uk_news/education/8362568.stm

Taoiseach, FAI call on FIFA to hold replay

Saturday, November 28th, 2009

RTÉ.ie News: Paris French players celebrate  RTÉ.ie News: Keane & Andrews Dreams dashed by handball

RTÉ.ie News: Damian Duff Gutted after loss

more about the replay here

Articles in the Irish press

Réactions des téléspectateurs / auditeurs

The Art of Manliness

Saturday, November 28th, 2009

For all the male readers of this blog, have a look here

Inside Broken Britain

Saturday, November 28th, 2009

Robert Yates returns to the streets of Liverpool, where he grew up, to report on a story of deprivation and hope

Robert Yates revisits Vienna StreetRobert Yates revisits Vienna Street, round the corner from Liverpool FC’s Anfield ground. Photograph: Gary Calton.

full article can be found here

The Fibonacci sequence in Tool’s L.ateralus

Saturday, November 28th, 2009

A great video about Fibonnaci sequence

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