Anja Merret

And the poor shall forevermore be downtrodden

Question: what is it about governments, big business, institutions, non–profits, charities etc that they want to keep the poor, poor? Alright, as generalisations go, this one is one of my better ones. Two articles that made me think this appeared in the media today. The first one was in the Independent and discussed the farming…

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People in pain — please help

What is it about the situation in Zimbabwe that has produced one of the most severe cases of stick-your-head-in-the-sand-itis that one can imagine? Watching a video on the online New York Times on the refugees streaming into South Africa got me into such a state that tears were running down my cheeks. Of course, as…

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Fun toys or maybe the next big technology thing

Watching what my younger daughter gets up to in geekland is always interesting. She is one of the early adopters of digital technology. Thanks to her, I have been a Twitter member since January 2007, months after she had joined, of course, and had a page on Facebook before most other old-timers. An iPhone made…

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Equal rights for women still a pipe dream

An article on BBC News online caught my eye. It dealt with the bias that women face worldwide. In a UN-commissioned report the findings were that women are discriminated against in almost every country around the world. The report was compiled by Fareda Banda, a Zimbabwean-born law professor based in London. In itself this was…

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The Olympic torch lights up human rights abuses in Tibet

The closing ceremony to the Sydney Olympics ended with an artistic performance by the next hosting country. China and its main city, Beijing, will be hosting the Games later in 2008. The display that China put on was breathtaking. It felt, at the time, that having to wait for four years for China’s opening ceremony…

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Let me try something controversial for a change

Recently I have been talking about more serious issues. It has been quite a wake-up call how readers can often be quite nit-picking and very ready to point out where one might have gone wrong. I truly appreciate feed-back, but it does make one hesitate to write again. I mean, who wants to be wrong?…

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Lies — more lies — and then there are financial firms

A blogger friend posted a lovely short article recently with the title “6 Reasons Why We Lie”. All of his reasons were absolutely spot-on. However, his final summary was the best. He maintained that the fundamental reason why people lie is because it mostly works. I want to add to this: it mostly works when…

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Immigrants: A threat or an opportunity?

North America, specifically the United States, has been a land peopled by descendants of Europe. At least, that’s how I perceived it to be. If you are ever in New York on St Patrick’s Day, check out the parade. It’s an endless procession of Irish descendants. The numbers could, of course, be attributed in part…

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Science fiction and the cellphone

Science fiction is not normally my first choice of reading material, unless of course it is about the trips through galaxy as described by a very funny writer called Douglas Adams. But I have been converted to the modern Cory Doctorow-style science fiction. Somehow his books seem to appeal to my vision of the future….

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We are living in a free-love society

In a rather illuminating article in the latest Trendwatching brief, the discussion is about free love. It’s about businesses offering goods, services or experiences to consumers for free and making their money from other things. Prime examples that come to mind are the home printers that are dirt cheap but where you have to take…

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