Business Week Will Make You Fat!

It is the weekend, which means that I spend less time online and more time baking delicious and fatty foods. Which is kinda pertinent to the article that I just came across, on Business Week (via Jezebel) on the effect on BMI of children of working mothers. Read More Business Week Will Make You Fat!

Dutch Political Discourse: Let’s make fun of people with disabilities!

This week’s infuriating moment courtesy of the gift that keeps giving in bigotry: Geert Wilder’s party, PVV (acronym, in Dutch for the Orwellian name of “Freedom Party“). Read More Dutch Political Discourse: Let’s make fun of people with disabilities!

So, you have an addiction? This is how you look like.

Addiction. Chemical Addiction. Substance abuse. Dependence. All of these words are used more or less interchangeably in media. Chances are, if you pick a newspaper in any major city in the Western world, you are likely to come into, at least, one item discussing or mentioning Chemical Addiction. Read More So, you have an addiction? This is how you look like.

Respectable News Outlets and Women’s Appearances

Yesterday I posted that trite fashion feature, courtesy of Time Magazine, about women who looked fat at the Golden Globes Award show. I was shocked that a serious news organization would provide exposure to ideas that are more suitable for TMZ or some Livejournal blogs. Read More Respectable News Outlets and Women’s Appearances

Going Dutch: How I Found My Place in the Workforce

Yesterday, during TMI Tuesday hour, I was asked if I had an opinion about this article on Dutch women and workforce disparities. The article in question highlights the fact that few Dutch women work full time and even fewer seek a career in the traditional sense. Read More Going Dutch: How I Found My Place in the Workforce

Crosspost: Wealth and Power in Perspective

[pullquote]The world’s four richest citizens — Carlos Slim, Bill Gates, Warren Buffett, and Mukesh Ambani — have more in common with each other than they do with the bottom strata of their respective countries. Yes, they do handle their wealth differently. Gates and Buffett are giving most of it away, Ambani just built the world’s most expensive house, and Slim is somewhere in the middle. But all four can count on their home governments to take care of their needs first. Preserving that kind of social hierarchy is an unwritten assumption in deciding which solutions to the world’s problems arrive on the table and which do not. [/pullquote](Source)

Terrifying Fact of the Day.

The four richest men share a combined wealth bigger than that of the 57 poorest countries together.

Just to give an idea of the magnitude, I checked the Wikipedia page for the index of poorest countries. To measure this wealth, I used the gross domestic product (GDP) at purchasing power parity (PPP) per capita, that is, the value of all final goods and services produced within a nation in a given year divided by the average (or mid-year) population for the same year. To put it in layman terms, this index tells us the total money value of all final goods and services that are produced in an economy over a period of time.

This is the list of the 20 poorest ones (by decreasing order; meaning Zimbabwe is the poorest in the list), together with the population figures in millions. This gives us a combined population of 339.8 million people. I do not have the time to go through all 57 countries, but I believe this shortened list gives a good idea. The combined wealth of this four men, equals the combined production of these countries in a given year (population figures in millions next to each country):

  • Comoros 0.8
  • Madagascar 20.6
  • Guinea 10
  • Tokelau 1.4
  • Ethiopia 85.2
  • Malawi 15
  • Mozambique 22.8
  • Sierra Leone 6.4
  • Togo 6.6
  • Rwanda 10.7
  • Afghanistan 28.3
  • Central African Republic 4.4
  • Eritrea 5.2
  • Niger 15.3
  • Guinea-Bissau 1.6
  • Somalia 9.3
  • Liberia 3.9
  • Burundi 8.9
  • Congo, Democratic Republic of the     70.9
  • Zimbabwe 12.5

Now, I would love for someone to come and tell me that privilege, as a concept to analyze socioeconomic facts and trends, does not exist.

Crosspost: Astroturfing: The (Fake) Grass That is not Always Greener

Astroturf is a kind of fake grass that was originally developed by Monsanto. It is also the slang name of a political phenomenon, subject of a very interesting article at The Guardian, These astroturf libertarians are the real threat to internet democracy. Read More Crosspost: Astroturfing: The (Fake) Grass That is not Always Greener

Pyramid of Oppression

In the most random of moments, today I came across an article about the connections between the objectification of women and meat in advertisements. The article itself was about a conference that feminist author and animal rights advocate Carol J. Adams gave at Michigan State University. From the article about the conference: Read More Pyramid of Oppression