Friday, July 22, 2016
I've been surfing the Web and reading about the crimes against humanity perpetrated in Fallujah, Darfur, and Bagram (among other places), but has anyone heard about this? From Human Rights Watch, "D. R. Congo: Tens of Thousands Raped, Few Prosecuted" (3/7):
In eastern Congo's conflict, government troops and rebel fighters have raped tens of thousands of women and girls, but fewer than a dozen perpetrators have been prosecuted by a judicial system in dire need of reform, Human Rights Watch said in a report released on the eve of International Women's Day.
The 52-page report, "Seeking Justice: The Prosecution of Sexual Violence in the Congo War," documents how the government of the Democratic Republic of Congo has taken insufficient steps to prosecute those responsible for wartime rape. Human Rights Watch called on the Congolese government and international donors, including the European Union, to take urgent steps to reform Congo's justice system
Despite the peace agreement and broad-based transition process in the D.R. Congo, which began in 2003, soldiers of the national army and armed groups continue to perpetrate sexual violence in the eastern provinces of North Kivu, South Kivu and Orientale. In 1998, armed conflict broke out among the Congolese government, several neighboring countries and various rebel factions. Since then, combatants on all sides have subjected tens of thousands of women and girls -- as well as a far smaller number of men and boys -- to sexual violence...
An increasing number of victims of sexual violence are demanding justice. "My husband does not want to live with me any more because I was raped by the Mai-Mai," said one woman who, along with 11 others in Shabunda, South Kivu, was gang-raped by combatants belonging to the Mai-Mai, a local Congolese armed group opposed to foreign occupation. "The perpetrators must be punished," she said... (#)
I wonder how many right-wingers who, reflexively turning away from similar crimes Americans are committing, would read something like this and be appalled at the savagery? Assuming, of course, they bother to give it a thought in the first place -- I don't read or hear much about what's been going on in Sudan, for instance, in the mainstream media.
Skin color probably plays a good-sized part of it (and our collective hypocrisy is obvious), but I think it goes deeper than that. There's an underlying indifference to human suffering that gives rise to personal acts like rape and general ones like war. And it spreads like a virus: The evil we do almost always lives on after us, starting with the immediate victims of our evil, who act in kind toward still others. Sometimes it all boils over in one place, and then the rest of us wonder how so much evil could be concentrated in one spot.
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Friday, July 15, 2016
One of the items in Bush's recent State of the Union address that went almost totally unnoticed is his creation of yet another federal bureaucracy: The Department of Corruption, Bribery, and Incompetence. The Onion has the details:
...The Scandal Secretary wil log all wiretaps and complaints of prisoner abuse, coordinate paid-propaganda efforts, eliminate redundant payoffs and bribes, oversee the appointment of unqualified political donors to head watchdog agencies, control all leaks and other high-level security breaches, and oversee the disappearance of Iraq reconstruction funds. He will also be responsible for issuing all official denials that laws have been broken."Many of the current scandals in Washington are crucial to the success of my priorities for the nation," Bush said. "The Department of Corruption will safeguard these important misdeeds.White House Chief of Staff Andrew Card characterized the president's announcement as part of a larger effort to usher in a "new era of scandal management.""The entire DCBI budget will come from private donors and investors, through an illegal slush fund," he said. "The money we'll save by eliminating redundancies and reducing scandal-related overhead will come back to citizens tenfold in the form of offshore corporate tax savings"...
Well, the current system just isn't working the way it used to. But Bush & Co's solution to everything -- keep adding red tape until the system doesn't work at all -- may have finally found the problem it was destined for. This could be Bush's true legacy: The Dems couldn't shut his presidency down, so he did it himself...
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Saturday, July 9, 2016
The gambling sector is one of the biggest mobile app success stories in terms of creating real value for customers and real revenue for companies who execute their strategies correctly.
Thursday, June 16, 2016
Gambling is very popular, from way back when, and more so today. It is a scam itself. In fact the oldest form known. Not only a scam, but very deceptive. Statistics show that about six percent of adults that are involved in gambling are severely addicted to such a "past time" as they call it. People who are hooked on gambling have the urge to bet on almost anything. From horses, cards, and the casino. The number doesn't end there. It continues to expand.
Casino scams are everywhere. High payouts and promising winnings are put up in huge slogans thereby attracting people who want to earn money the fast, easy and enjoyable way. A fact is gamblers waste a lot of their time, in the hope of winning. So they don't give up easily.
Studies show that gambling problems can easily occur in individuals with no self control. It is necessary for one to identify if he has problems, so it can be identified and acted upon promptly.
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Here are some questions one should ask to detect if there is a problem:
* After gambling, when you lose money, be it a small or a large amount, do regret it, or feel resentment?
* When you win, do you have a strong desire to win more, therefore you want to go back?
* When you lose, do you feel a need to go back very soon?
* Do you spend a lot of time gambling, usually longer than what you planned?
*If you have problems, do you gamble to forget them?
* Are you spending more time gambling than with work?
*Do you not stop until your very last dollar is taken up?
*Do arguments take place between you and your family as a result of your need to gamble?
*To finance your gambling, do you borrow money from friends or associates?
Gambling addiction can be destructive. Family, friends and your reputation are at risk. It is a condition often times ignored. There are escape gamblers that affect seventy five percent of women from their thirties and up. Usually the reasons for gambling is to escape from the emotional pain that they are in, being bored, lonely, depressed or that they make gambling their hobby or past time. These types of addiction can be cured in three to six months.
The action gambler is much more difficult to deal. Most are men, where gambling for them creates ecstasy like a drug addition. This is much harder to cure, since the individual will deny the fact, when confronted. They will typically not stop until left with nothing, financially.
As gambling creates a lot of scams, it is a fact that still more and more are drawn to it. The primary reason is to win a huge amount of money. But then comes in the most lethal of reasons -- that of feeling a certain euphoria. Scams or no scams, an individual still continues to gamble and is a reason why offline gambling still thrives today.
Some people cringe at the thought of being labeled as a gambler since the stigma would forever hound them. People have different reasons as to why they gamble. Some gamble to forget their problems, others for fun, or to while away the time, those who play seriously and those who are addicted to it.
But all is not negative when it comes to gambling as there are untapped benefits of gambling which cannot be seen within the walls of the casino, or the race track, or in the bingo social hall.
In Las Vegas, a whopping 60 percent of the employment ratio is attributed to the presence of casinos. Imagine what would happen to Las Vegas if all the casinos suddenly stopped operating.
Self-discipline is the key. Gambling is for entertainment, as it was intended to be. Others just couldn't handle a loss and always kept right on thinking that the next card would be the one to salvage all that has been lost. But it never does. And these types of gamblers only comprise one-fourth of the gambling population who cannot gamble responsibly.
Imagine the other 75 percent who responsibly gamble. These are the people who find the entertainment value of gambling and they are never blinded by the illusion that hitting it big time just once is the key to financial freedom.
It is sad that only a small percentage of the gambling population gets the bad rap of how gambling can be so destructive. Families, friends, properties, jobs, crimes and deception permeate the destruction brought about by gambling but it is still a small portion of the gambling population.
Winnings from gambling activities have contributed in providing the needed financial support of worthy causes. They use gambling activities such as bingos or lotteries with a percentage of the jackpot winnings tied with charity institutions.
Some celebrities even show their prowess in card games like poker to provide entertainment for the viewers and winnings for the charity institution they represent.
Studies have been found that retirees 65 years old and above who gamble have less health issues such as depression, alcoholism and bankruptcy as they find gambling to be therapeutic as it exercises their mind and keep them alert.
The study was not conclusive, however, because retiree gamblers are the recreational gamblers who find the entertainment value of gambling. They are healthier because they are healthy to begin with and not because they gamble.
In the end, it is not the gambling act itself that makes it beneficial or harmful to the individual. It is the decision of the individual if gambling would rule him or he would rule his gambling habit.
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