Friday, January 21, 2005

How to speak to baboons

Emily Latella Memorial Editorial: I agree with Bill Thomas that Bush’s Social Security privatization plan is a dead whore.

Speaking of the elderly, the power of the people, or at least the power of pissed-off old people, turns out not to be completely dead in Russia. Huge protests have made Putin back off the elimination of various benefits for pensioners and veterans. Instead, to reduce the cost of those programs he’ll have to go back to the policy of the last few years: steadily reducing Russia’s life expectancy.

Oh give me a fucking break [Indy link no longer working]:
International aid agencies in India have been horrified to find, even amid the suffering caused by the tsunami, some survivors being refused access to basic relief because they are considered “Untouchables”.

Accounts have emerged of members of the former Untouchable castes not being allowed to drink clean water from a tank provided by Unicef because other castes believed it would pollute the water in the tank. Dalits, as the former Untouchables are known today, have been thrown out of government relief camps by the other survivors staying there ....
Zoo keepers in Kent, England, are having to learn French in order to communicate with their baboons.