[News] Around The Rest of World

A posting place for news from places around the globe, outside of the US/Europe.

I am not even going to try to find a picture of “wearing socks with thongs”, because that means something completely different outside Australia.

To American eyes, that reads as “I wear socks with bum floss, come at me”. Which is ever so much more entertaining, but also, ewww.

Calling flip-flops thongs isn't a strictly Australian thing though. That's what we called them when I was growing up. As best I can tell, they only really switched to being exclusively called flip-flops when the underwear became popular.

Robear wrote:

To American eyes, that reads as “I wear socks with bum floss, come at me”. Which is ever so much more entertaining, but also, ewww.

I don't want cold toes, regardless of what skivvies I'm rocking, so yeah.

LarryC wrote:

What's so wrong about wearing socks with sandals?

Are your feet cold, or not? It is like wearing a coat with shorts.

LeapingGnome wrote:
LarryC wrote:

What's so wrong about wearing socks with sandals?

Are your feet cold, or not? It is like wearing a coat with shorts.

Yes they are. That's why you put the socks on.

This really isn't complicated.

LeapingGnome wrote:
LarryC wrote:

What's so wrong about wearing socks with sandals?

Are your feet cold, or not? It is like wearing a coat with shorts.

I think the desirability of a short skirt with a long jacket is well established.

Bruce wrote:
LeapingGnome wrote:
LarryC wrote:

What's so wrong about wearing socks with sandals?

Are your feet cold, or not? It is like wearing a coat with shorts.

I think the desirability of a short skirt with a long jacket is well established.

In that case, one wants a girl with the right allocations
Who's fast, thorough, and sharp as a tack

Although she will have "shoes that cut."

LeapingGnome wrote:
LarryC wrote:

What's so wrong about wearing socks with sandals?

Are your feet cold, or not? It is like wearing a coat with shorts.

I live in a tropical country. My feet are never cold. That doesn't even come up in the calculation of whether I wear socks or not.

LeapingGnome wrote:
LarryC wrote:

What's so wrong about wearing socks with sandals?

Are your feet cold, or not? It is like wearing a coat with shorts.

Canada has entered the chat

GOD I wish this was the only discourse I had to think about each day.

There is a picture I have where I am wearing socks with croc sandals that I put as my Facebook profile pic every time my wife is out of town.

Yes, this upsets her, and yes, that is why I do it.

IMAGE(https://scontent-ort2-2.xx.fbcdn.net/v/t1.18169-9/10533328_10102391434617774_5187387382101966666_n.jpg?_nc_cat=101&ccb=1-5&_nc_sid=174925&_nc_ohc=PNGjZjq7IxIAX_Sr-b0&_nc_oc=AQmCnWpZC5R_Rc7GsISoVheKeVbFYX0DLGDiEq6lI7ui67EOSI39Dvzd-qwQn2QOW0CRVa2CAYKDfslzDi1j-MWP&tn=E_YunGmfWEbgOqDp&_nc_ht=scontent-ort2-2.xx&oh=2742306fe2811099b92d7ffd117c22df&oe=6183313A)

UpToIsomorphism wrote:

There is a picture I have where I am wearing socks with croc sandals that I put as my Facebook profile pic every time my wife is out of town.

Yes, this upsets her, and yes, that is why I do it.

IMAGE(https://scontent-ort2-2.xx.fbcdn.net/v/t1.18169-9/10533328_10102391434617774_5187387382101966666_n.jpg?_nc_cat=101&ccb=1-5&_nc_sid=174925&_nc_ohc=PNGjZjq7IxIAX_Sr-b0&_nc_oc=AQmCnWpZC5R_Rc7GsISoVheKeVbFYX0DLGDiEq6lI7ui67EOSI39Dvzd-qwQn2QOW0CRVa2CAYKDfslzDi1j-MWP&tn=E_YunGmfWEbgOqDp&_nc_ht=scontent-ort2-2.xx&oh=2742306fe2811099b92d7ffd117c22df&oe=6183313A)

You’re a monster.

Someone wants be banned real bad.

Have you considered getting those toe-socks and then sandals?

#InstigationIsAnArtForm

mudbunny wrote:

Have you considered getting those toe-socks and then sandals?

#InstigationIsAnArtForm

I now know what I must do the next time my wife is on a work trip... assuming those are things we will ever be able to do again.

iaintgotnopants wrote:

Calling flip-flops thongs isn't a strictly Australian thing though. That's what we called them when I was growing up. As best I can tell, they only really switched to being exclusively called flip-flops when the underwear became popular.

Now I got the thong song stuck in my head.

UpToIsomorphism wrote:
mudbunny wrote:

Have you considered getting those toe-socks and then sandals?

#InstigationIsAnArtForm

I now know what I must do the next time my wife is on a work trip... assuming those are things we will ever be able to do again.

No, no, no, you gotta get cornier socks. Plain, white dad calf-socks.

I think the toe socks would bother her more, you know... if a Stanta is listening.

A ‘Historic Event’: First Malaria Vaccine Approved by W.H.O.

New York Times wrote:

The world has gained a new weapon in the war on malaria, among the oldest known and deadliest of infectious diseases: the first vaccine shown to help prevent the disease. By one estimate, it will save tens of thousands of children each year.

Malaria kills about half a million people each year, nearly all of them in sub-Saharan Africa — including 260,000 children under 5. The new vaccine, made by GlaxoSmithKline, rouses a child’s immune system to thwart Plasmodium falciparum, the deadliest of five malaria pathogens and the most prevalent in Africa.

The World Health Organization on Wednesday endorsed the vaccine, the first step in a process that should lead to wide distribution in poor countries. To have a malaria vaccine that is safe, moderately effective and ready for distribution is “a historic event,” said Dr. Pedro Alonso, director of the W.H.O.’s global malaria program.

Malaria is rare in the developed world. There are just 2,000 cases in the United States each year, mostly among travelers returning from countries in which the disease is endemic.

The vaccine, called Mosquirix, is not just a first for malaria — it is the first developed for any parasitic disease. Parasites are much more complex than viruses or bacteria, and the quest for a malaria vaccine has been underway for a hundred years.

“It’s a huge jump from the science perspective to have a first-generation vaccine against a human parasite,” Dr. Alonso said.

In clinical trials, the vaccine had an efficacy of about 50 percent against severe malaria in the first year, but the figure dropped close to zero by the fourth year. And the trials did not directly measure the vaccine’s impact on deaths, which has led some experts to question whether it is a worthwhile investment in countries with countless other intractable problems.

But severe malaria accounts for up to half of malaria deaths and is considered “a reliable proximal indicator of mortality,” said Dr. Mary Hamel, who leads the W.H.O.’s malaria vaccine implementation program. “I do expect we will see that impact.”

A modeling study last year estimated that if the vaccine were rolled out to countries with the highest incidence of malaria, it could prevent 5.4 million cases and 23,000 deaths in children younger than 5 each year.

...

The next step is for Gavi, the global vaccine alliance, to determine that the vaccine is a worthwhile investment. If the organization’s board approves the vaccine — not guaranteed, given the vaccine’s moderate efficacy and the many competing priorities — Gavi will purchase the vaccine for countries that request it, a process that is expected to take at least a year.

But as with Covid-19, problems with vaccine production and supply could considerably delay progress. And the pandemic has also diverted resources and attention from other diseases, said Deepali Patel, who leads malaria vaccine programs at Gavi.

Yalda Hakim: My return to Afghanistan

BBC presenter Yalda Hakim was born in Afghanistan. Her family fled in the 1980s, during the Soviet occupation, but she has regularly reported from the country since. Now she has returned for the first time since the Taliban seized power 100 days ago.

Conversion Therapy is now a crime in Canada

Bill C-4, a ban on conversion therapy, passes in the House with unanimous consent

Conservative MP Rob Moore rose on Wednesday in the House of Commons to ask for unanimous consent to pass Bill C-4, a ban on conversion therapy. The legislation would make it a crime to cause someone to undergo conversion therapy, taking a minor out of the country in order to get conversion therapy abroad, profiting from the practice, or either advertising or promoting it.

China’s troll king: how a tabloid editor became the voice of Chinese nationalism

On 2 November, the Chinese tennis star Peng Shuai posted a long message on the social media site Weibo, accusing China’s former vice-premier, Zhang Gaoli, of sexual assault. As soon as the post went live, it became the highest-profile #MeToo case in China, and one of the ruling Chinese Communist party’s largest public relations crises in recent history. Within about 20 minutes, the post had been removed. All mentions of the post were then scrubbed from the Chinese internet. No references to the story appeared in the Chinese media. In the days that followed, Peng made no further statements and did not appear in public. Outside China, however, as other tennis stars publicly expressed concerns for her safety, Peng’s apparent disappearance became one of the biggest news stories in the world.

It wasn’t long before Hu Xijin stepped into the story. Hu is the editor of the Global Times, a chest-thumpingly nationalistic tabloid sometimes described as “China’s Fox News”. In recent years, he has become the most influential Chinese propagandist in the west – a constant presence on Twitter and in the international media, always on hand to defend the Communist party line, no matter the topic. On 19 November, he tweeted to his 450,000 followers that he had confirmed through his own sources – he didn’t say who they were – that Peng was alive and well. Over the next two days, he posted videos of Peng at a restaurant and signing autographs in Beijing.

To many observers, this seemingly stage-managed footage, disseminated by organs of the Chinese state, was not reassuring. On 21 November, the International Olympic Committee spoke with Peng on a video call and declared that she was “doing fine”. When this intervention still failed to convince many that Peng was safe, Hu took the opportunity to hammer home one of the central themes of his three-decade career in journalism: when it comes to China, the western media sees only what it wants to see. “They only believe the story about China that they imagine,” he tweeted. “I’m surprised that they didn’t say the lady who showed up these two days is a fake Peng Shuai, a double.” Those who continued to question Peng’s safety, Hu wrote, were trying to “demonize China’s system”.

Hu’s eagerness to reframe a story about sexual assault and censorship as a story about clashing political ideologies and anti-China prejudice is part of a significant change in the way China presents itself to the world. From the late 1970s onwards, as China was opening up but had yet to assume a major role in international affairs, it struggled to handle criticism from abroad. The official response was usually some form of wounded denial, or a stilted demand that other countries stay out of its business. But over the past decade, as China’s global power has grown, President Xi Jinping has pushed the country into a more confident, aggressive posture, and Hu, more than any other Chinese journalist, has become the voice of this pugnacious nationalism. On China’s most popular social media platform, WeChat, the Global Times is reportedly the most read outlet.

“My English is almost all self-taught,” Hu once said in a video on Weibo, “and in English, I’m most skilful at picking a fight.” He has hyped up the prospects of military confrontation between the US and China over Taiwan. He has warned that if Britain infringes Chinese sovereignty in the South China Sea then it will be treated like “a bitch” who is “asking for a beating”. He has compared India to a “bandit” that has “barbarically robbed” Chinese companies. He has referred to Australia as nothing more than “gum stuck to the bottom of China’s shoe”. He recently concluded an article with the question: “In the face of such an irrational Australia, shouldn’t China be prepared with an iron fist and to punch it hard when needed, teaching it a thorough lesson?”

When he picks a fight with foreign officials on Twitter, Hu likes to take screenshots of the tweets and post them on Weibo, just to show his 24 million followers – most of whom are blocked from Twitter by the great firewall – that he’s out there, defending China’s honour. “The most important thing about Hu is that he has constructed a whole style of authoritarian, nationalistic rhetoric,” Xiao Qiang, an expert in Chinese media at Berkeley’s School of Information, told me. “His readers go around repeating the same things and spreading the same sentiments.” Hu’s combative approach has been taken up by a number of Chinese diplomats and spokespeople – often called “Wolf Warriors”, in reference to a jingoistic Chinese blockbuster movie – who promote a “China first” philosophy and use social media to trash anyone they see as opposing Chinese interests. But where the Wolf Warrior diplomats are a recent phenomenon, people like Hu “have been propagating this idea for 10 years,” says Xiang Lanxin, a professor of international politics at Geneva’s Graduate Institute.

Chinese sports officials, checking all of the "idiotic nationalist authoritarian government" boxes.

The General Administration of Sport of China (GAS) said in a statement about “strengthening the management of football players” that the Chinese Football Association would set out disciplinary requirements for national team players.

“National teams at all levels will strictly implement the relevant requirements of the management measures” and “fully demonstrate the positive spirit of Chinese football players and set a good example for society,” it said.

“The national team and the U23 national team athletes are strictly prohibited from having new tattoos, and those who already have tattoos are advised to remove them themselves. If there are special circumstances agreed by the team, (players) must cover up the tattoos during training and matches.”

It also said that for teams at the under-20 level and below, the recruitment of players with tattoos was “strictly prohibited”.

The GAS added that national teams should organise “ideological and political education activities” that would “strengthen the patriotic education” of players. Doing so would “enhance the sense of mission, responsibility and honour, and create a national team capable of conquering and fighting well and with excellent style of play,” it said.

Yes, the key to creating a top-level football team is definitely reading the Little Red Book as much as possible.

Pred... dude, all respect, but I don't think your social credit score is high enough to criticize Comrade Xi.

H.P. Lovesauce wrote:

Pred... dude, all respect, but I don't think your social credit score is high enough to criticize Comrade Xi.

mine, however

Censorious authoritarianism sometimes can be profoundly hilarious.

Cult Classic ‘Fight Club’ Gets a Very Different Ending in China

IMAGE(https://video-images.vice.com/_uncategorized/1643019083555-img8732.jpeg?resize=800:*)

Well I'll be damned.

Chuck Palahniuk points out that China’s censored Fight Club ending is actually closer to his book

But as for the book, original author Chuck Palahniuk told TMZ that he’s not especially offended by what the Chinese censors did to the movie version. For one thing, the narrator in the book does foil Tyler Durden’s plan and get sent to a mental institution, so this version lines up better with what Palahniuk put in the novel. On top of that, the narrator being “rehabilitated” and released is also the plot of Palahniuk’s Fight Club 2 comic book, so this is a better hook for any Chinese fans who want to read that (bad) continuation of the story.

CW - Child physical abuse, child sexual abuse, child emotional abuse, EXTREME racism, child rape, attempted genocide

More information about the abuses at Canadian Residential schools is coming out. Last week the Williams Lake First Nation announced the findings of their investigation at St. Joseph’s Mission Residential School. What they shared was a lot more than a number of children’s bodies found by ground radar. It includes evidence of other ways bodies were disposed of never to be found. Ever. Evidence of what our people have known all along. Some of the evidence shared:

again - CW CW CW CW

I AM NOT KIDDING

Spoiler:

-rape was a common every day occurrence
-priests and staff raped the children and got them pregnant
-newborn babies were thrown into the incinerator
-children’s bodies were thrown into the incinerator
-children’s bodies were thrown into the river
-children were forced to eat rotting food, sleep in bed bugs, live among rodents, consume contaminated water, live with untreated head lice/infections/diseases
-some children died by Suicide (the one referenced was 8 yrs old)
-children were routinely beaten for speaking their language and other “reasons”
-authorities said there was no need to investigate because the child was “just an Indian”
-they never bothered to tell the parents after they killed their child

…these are some of the things they shared. Not just the number of 93 bodies in the ground, but a story of the suffering they endured. Who can even begin to imagine our children being tortured this way?!? It’s horrifying, disgusting.

Myanmar Update: It's not going any better.

Myanmar is seeing increasingly deadly battles between its military and organised groups of armed civilians, new data suggests. Many of those fighting the military are young people who have put their lives on hold since the junta seized power a year ago.

The intensity and extent of the violence - and the co-ordination of the opposition attacks - point to a change in the conflict from an uprising to a civil war.

Violence is now spread across the country, according to data from conflict monitoring group Acled (Armed Conflict Location and Event Data Project). Reports from the ground also suggest the fighting has become increasingly co-ordinated and has reached urban centres which have not previously seen armed resistance to the military.

Although precise death tolls are hard to verify, Acled - which bases its data on local media and other reports - has collated figures to suggest about 12,000 people have been killed in political violence since the military seized power on 1 February 2021. Clashes have grown deadlier month on month since August.

In the coup's immediate aftermath, most civilians died as security forces cracked down on nationwide demonstrations. Now, however, the rising death toll is a result of combat - as civilians have taken up arms - Acled figures show.