Archive for November, 2017

It’s World Toilet Day – and that’s no joke

November 19th, 2017 by Roger Darlington

In 2013, the United Nations General Assembly officially designated 19 November as World Toilet Day. World Toilet Day is coordinated by UN-Water in collaboration with governments and partners. World Toilet Day is about inspiring action to tackle the global sanitation crisis. Today, 4.5 billion people live without a household toilet that safely disposes of their […]

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Just !% of the world’s population owns half the total wealth of the planet

November 17th, 2017 by Roger Darlington

According to Credit Suisse’s latest annual global wealth report published earlier this week,  the globe’s richest 1% now owns half the world’s wealth. The world’s richest people have seen their share of the globe’s total wealth increase from 42.5% at the height of the 2008 financial crisis to 50.1% in 2017, or $140tn (£106tn), At the […]

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A review of “The Brain” by David Eagleman

November 16th, 2017 by Roger Darlington

Eagleman is an assistant professor of neuroscience at Baylor College of Medicine in Houston. A wonderful presenter, he created and wrote the fascinating six-part television series “The Brain” which was first aired on PBS in the United States in 2015 and subsequently shown (and reshown) on BBC in Britain (which is how I saw it). […]

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A review of the new film “Paddington 2”

November 15th, 2017 by Roger Darlington

I loved “Paddington” and – to my delight – I loved “Paddington 2” too. Of course, we start with the adorable character created by Michael Bond (who died between the release of the two films), the brilliant CGI representation of our furry friend, and the purr-fect voicing by Ben Wishaw. This is such a British […]

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Is it time to control the tech giants?

November 14th, 2017 by Roger Darlington

Five behemoths bestride the Internet world. They are Amazon, Apple, Alphabet (owners of Google), Facebook and Microsoft – all American-owned and all simply enormous. Do you have any idea what these companies are worth? Do you realise the reach of their operations? Do you think that governments and regulators need to do more to control […]

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Please don’t forget the suffering in eastern Ukraine

November 12th, 2017 by Roger Darlington

“In February it will be four years since Russia’s president, Vladimir Putin, annexed Crimea and helped foment a rebellion in Ukraine’s industrial east. Since then about 10,000 people have died, including 3,000 civilians, and more than 1.7 million have been displaced. Aid agencies say that 4.4 million people have been directly affected by the continuing […]

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A review of the new version of “Murder On The Orient Express”

November 10th, 2017 by Roger Darlington

I saw the star-stunned 1974 film version of Agatha Christie’s famous 1934 novel, so I knew the outcome of the equally star-stunned 2017 remake, but I still found it an enjoyable ride through the snow. It has to be said that the plot is massively contrived and the whole thing sags somewhat in the middle, […]

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American elections provide major wins for Democrats and diversity

November 9th, 2017 by Roger Darlington

Outside of the USA, the media focus on American elections is concentrated on the four-yearly event when Americans elect the president, the whole of the House of Representatives and a third of the Senate. There is some media interest in what are called the ‘mid-term’ elections when every two years voters again elect the whole of […]

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Britain is no longer a Christian nation. Indeed more than half of the UK population has no religion.

November 8th, 2017 by Roger Darlington

According to the latest survey of religious belief among the British population conducted by British Social Attitudes, 53% of adults describe themselves as having no religion. In 1983, the figure was only 31% and the increase in the percentage is clear and consistent. The percentage is closely correlated with age. Currently, among 18-24 years old, […]

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Reasons to be cheerful: the seven megatrends that could beat global warming

November 8th, 2017 by Roger Darlington

… a series of fast-moving global megatrends, spurred by trillion-dollar investments, indicates that humanity might be able to avert the worst impacts of global warming. From trends already at full steam, including renewable energy, to those just now hitting the big time, such as mass-market electric cars, to those just emerging, such as plant-based alternatives […]

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