beandelphiki: Animated icon of the TARDIS from the British television show, "Doctor Who." ([DW] never give in and NEVER give up)
If you watch only one video online this week, let it be this one:

"How It All Ends" - a video explaining what we should do about global climate change (a.k.a. "global warming") from the perspective of risk management.

It's only 10 minutes long, and I like it because it reflects my own thoughts on the issue.

But if you have a bit more time (say...3 hours), you might want to also watch this BBC series, "The Climate Wars":

The Climate Wars: Battle Begins

This first episode explores the history of the discovery of global warming, up to the present day.

The Climate Wars: Fight Back

This episode covers the skeptic's arguments against global warming, including the Medieval Warm Period, the unreliability of the surface record, and sunspots.

(Pay particular attention to the last ten minutes.)

The Climate Wars: Fight for the Future

This episode covers the question of just how much of a problem global warming really is. It repeats stuff from earlier in the series, but goes into more detail.

Seriously guys, if you have it! It's incredibly interesting.

(And if you need a shallow, the presenter has a Scottish accent?)


Oct. 7th, 2008 02:44 pm
beandelphiki: Animated icon of the TARDIS from the British television show, "Doctor Who." ([DW] never give in and NEVER give up)
Ganked from [ profile] griffen:

The brains of liberals work differently from the brains of conservatives.

Apparently left-wing brains, "tolerate ambiguity," better.

...Totally wild.
beandelphiki: Animated icon of the TARDIS from the British television show, "Doctor Who." (jesus...)
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...I honestly think the fact that someone would even ask this question is sick. I live in a country with a universal health care system: a system which is currently under attack from critics who think we would do better to just make health care a free market (or at least put some services on the market - like expensive surgeries), and I'm TERRIFIED this will happen.

Don't get me wrong, Canada's health care system is in huge crisis right now. But that doesn't scare me anywhere NEAR as much as the proposed alternatives, where only the rich could afford to see a doctor.

And some of the people who are pushing this the hardest are here in the redneck west, Alberta. Alberta is RICH right now, and yet, the government is somehow failing to put enough money back into health care to keep the system from its rapidly speeding demise. The numbers and news stories just get scarier: more than half the family doctors in Calgary have plans to close their practices within the next few years because of the soaring overhead costs, and hospitals (according to one news story I read some months back) are considering lining the hallways with beds because they don't have enough rooms. (For all I know, they might already have started doing so.) The big story in previous months has been the fact that pregnant women were being turned away from hospitals in droves for lack of beds and being told to seek midwives - a service many, many women can't afford.

It's ALREADY a privilege to have a doctor in Calgary; not necessarily because you can't personally afford it, but because the health care system is so pressed for money that the equipment, space, doctors and nurses simply aren't there.

(Disappointingly - and bitterly so - there is also no real effort being made to increase the number of available spaces in most of Canada's programs of medical study. Many Canadian premed students end up in foreign universities, then foreign residencies, and never make it home to practice. On top of all the doctors fleeing the system here, we are losing an untold number of potential FUTURE doctors.)

So the solution is apparently to put it all on the market and let the health practitioners make up the difference by charging people an arm and a leg to get off the months-long waiting lists for any kind of specialty help.

And if you can't afford it, well, you could be on those lists for much, much longer.

But hey, every Albertan got a $400 cheque last year! Not nearly enough to cover many health care costs for ANYONE directly, but at least everybody got the same amount! That's fair, yeah?

It's just not just.

Which reminds me, I finished all those Globalization readings yesterday (finally!), and I read something from a Scientific American article in my coursepack that made me cry:

According to the estimates of the U.N. Millennium Project, all it would take to lift every single person on the African continent who is currently living in extreme poverty (extreme poverty being defined as making less than $1 a day and being unable to afford the basic necessities of life - including basic health care, ahem) out of it is 0.5% of the combined GNP of donor countries.


Also, Americans (this being an American publication, there were no numbers for Canadians) generally see foreign aid as, "throwing money away," because they think quite a bit of money is going towards foreign aid, and don't see anything happening.

Yet when polled as to the amount of money they believe is being spent on foreign aid, Americans overestimate the amount by as much as 30 times.

...Just something to mull over.


Dec. 25th, 2007 08:35 am
beandelphiki: Animated icon of the TARDIS from the British television show, "Doctor Who." ([DW] Midnight)
I spent a large portion of Christmas Eve dinner reading The World Encyclopedia of Cheese (my great-aunt and uncle have quite the varied library), and with the help of that book and Wikipedia's article on cheese, I thought I'd share some of what I've learned with you all.

Curds and whey! )

Cheese can be made from the milk of any creature which makes milk; but the most common by far are the cow's milk cheeses. Sheep and goat cheeses are also commonly used, although goat's cheese in particular is tricky to make well, and so suffers from the public perception of it as bitter.

(And I've HAD good goat's cheese, y'all. Believe me, it is THE SHIT.)

But do you know what OTHER animal's milk they can make cheese from?




Traditionally made from reindeer's milk, Juustoleipa is a soft cheese toasted by fire, which makes it look rather bread-like. Apparently, it is considered excellent cheese to have for breakfast.

Cool, huh?

MERRY CHRISTMAS, EVERYBODY! Or holiday of your choice.



beandelphiki: Animated icon of the TARDIS from the British television show, "Doctor Who." (Default)

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