links for 2011-02-22

  • "Libyans are not condemned to be ruled by Gaddafis for eternity; Moroccans do not have to settle for an absolute monarchy, no matter how enlightened. Encouraged by their neighbours' example, they have higher expectations for their future, and so should you."
  • "So where's the flipside to the story of upward mobility in India? It is the story of poorer India. Primarily agricultural, this India comprises more than 50% of the population but accounts for only 15% of the economy. Life in India's villages is altogether different: it is still concerned with the anxieties of getting two square meals a day. In recent years, while the Indian economy has grown at an average annual rate of 9%, the agricultural sector has grown at 3%. An exponential price rise of 17% in January compared with the same period last year, for food staples that include eggs, fruits, milk and onions, has hurt this section of the population the most."
  • "Today there are black Washingtons, like this writer, who are often identified as African-American by people they have never met. There are white Washingtons who are sometimes misidentified and have felt discrimination. There are Washingtons of both races who view the name as a special — if complicated — gift."
  • "The idea is so that important questions can be answered, like who was the first to mention “haters,” or which is the most popular champagne/sneakers/porn star to rap about? The database can also be used to determine the answers to more complex questions, such as which rapper has the smartest songs, or which city spawns the most monosyllabic rap?

    "Hemphill says on the Kickstarter page: “The idea to build the Hip-Hop Word Count came out of having hundreds of heated & passionate discussions. Tired of having the answers left up to conjecture or whoever had the loudest voice, I decided to build a tool that would help give answers by charting the culture described within Hip-Hop music.”

  • "Although the two camps seem to be at polar opposites, they do have two things in common: compassion and a desire for justice and equality for all. Both sides are working hard in their own ways to create a fairer and just world, whether their focus is on women, people of colour, or animals, and I’d to think (idealistic as it may be) that instead of fighting among ourselves we can unite in the face of the real enemy: structural societal inequality in which food production has been hijacked by white, western corporations that utilise technologies and systems that oppress both humans (predominantly people of colour) and animals, as well as devastate the environment and keep in place a class system in which the rich get richer and have access to healthier foods and the poor get poorer and sicker and more marginalised."

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  • Sanjana

    So tired with all the negative articles in Western publications about developing nations like India and China, especially on the “problematic” issues the so-called “developed” West suffers from itself, it leaves such a bad taste in the mouth. It’s like, “no! They’re just fooling themselves, they’ll never get to our standards! Backward wanna-bes!” When’s the last time you read a positive article on China or India in even the “liberal” outlets like Guardian?

  • Medusa

    In regards to the Washington article, I was struck by how the whites named Washington who, when facing housing discrimination, would go to landlords/renting agencies to be like “look, we’re not black. Rent to us.” On the one hand, obviously they needed housing, but on the other, my GOD, what a display of privilege. The other hundreds of thousands of Washingtons still face discrimination based on the name.

  • Seffi

    It isn’t soft bigotry…it is full out bigotry. Iran got a theocracy because the Shah repressed the religious from everyday life and the non religious aspects of the movement lost their hold because they weren’t as prepared or organised, it isn’t ideal but Iran isn’t a one note place and things are more complex than the media makes out….Hezbollah wouldn’t exist if it wasn’t for the Israeli Invasion and occupation of Lebanon and Hamas would never have become a viable political option if it wasn’t for the weakness of the PA and the continuing blockade of Gaza and occupation of Palestine. All the things you mentioned did not happen in a vacuum and the US and European powers have had their parts to play in all of it. You can be as pessimistic as you want, people have a right to decide what happens in their own lands and not be held to ransom for other nations’ interests and fears of ‘Islamism’.

    • Sobia

      That was a perfect response. Exactly what I was thinking when reading pzed’s comment.

  • Tryptamine

    Thank you for that first link. If anyone is interested, there is a group on Facebook called In Solidarity with the People of Libya that could use a lot more people than it currently has.