Apparently, inviting erotic dancers to your loved ones’ funerary rites is a time-honored method of improving attendance. But China’s government is not cool with it. They’ve “been trying to fight the country’s funereal stripper scourge for some time now” and will now be working with the police to crack down more firmly.
You know what phrase should not exist? “Funeral strippers.” I’m kind of okay with “funereal stripper scourge”, though. Anyone need an album title?
This week in first world problems: “‘It’s not cheap like it used to be,’ laments Dale Weathington of Kolcraft, an American firm that uses contract manufacturers to make prams in southern China. Labour costs have surged by 20% a year for the past four years, he grumbles (emphasis mine).” This sounds like the curmudgeonest dude in history. Also I’m pretty sure he makes an imaginary product.
“Sixteen civilians [have] been killed in a shooting spree by a U.S. officer stationed in Afghanistan…The incident is the latest in a series of widely publicized self-inflicted setbacks for U.S. forces in recent months. In February, Qurans were mistakenly burned as garbage at a military base in Afghanistan, which led to deadly riots. In January, a video of U.S. forces urinating on Taliban corpses surfaced on the Internet.” Reaction from Newt Gingrich: “We’re not prepared to be ruthless enough.” Just so everybody has it straight, to Newt Gingrich, massacring civilians and pissing on corpses counts as not ruthless enough.
Happy 90th to China’s Communist Party. Even the kids are getting in on the fun!
“‘No, the president does not have cancer,’ said Alfredo Márquez, 53, a member of the Bolivarian militia, an armed force established by Mr. Chávez. ‘He has something simpler.'” What does that mean? Is cancer like a bourgeois disease?
My mellow would be totally harshed if I had a “loyalty pledge” come to my dorm room. Would probably need to see my RA.
This dude is going HAM with his racism. He not only claims that black women are “objectively less physically attractive than other women,” but also that African countries are poor because African people have low IQs! Dr. Kanazawa, you are a prolific racist.
Kim Jong-un, in his first official trip outside North Korea, visited China, allegedly to strengthen economic ties and coordinate policy for inter-Korean nuclear talks. However, if he’s anything like his brother, I suspect he had other things on his mind.
Update: Forgot to give a hat tip to Julienne, a Wronging Rights loyalist, for the 2nd item. Thanks!
All this revolution stuff has got Joe Biden “fired up” to bring us a piping fresh, hot metaphor: “All of this began when a fruit vendor in Tunisia, fed up with an indignity of a corrupt government and a stagnant economy literally set himself on fire, and in doing so ignited the passions of millions and millions of people throughout that region.” Keep bringin the heat, guys.
For all you gossip-hounds, here are some autocrats that America is chill with.
Uh, thanks but no thanks, China. Clearly I’m not the only one who prefers my tomato paste garden-fresh.
On Monday I tried to teach my undergrads about the international political ramifications of national currency policies. (Because nothing starts a week off right like a discussion of quantitative easing.)
It turns out I could have saved myself, and my students, a whole lot of time and energy and just shown the following video:
I would have to imagine that many people’s perception of child soldiers will change after this NYT article. It reports on the U.S.-funded Somali government’s use of child soldiers. This is telling: “When asked how the American government could guarantee that American money was not being used to arm children, one of the officials said, ‘I don’t have a good answer for that.'” Also I have to give a wtf to Obama for his response to questioning regarding America’s place alongside Somalia as the only countries not to have ratified the Convention on the Rights of the Child: “It is embarrassing to find ourselves in the company of Somalia, a lawless land.” That’s just rude, really.
Following the World Cup, there have been rumors of the possibility of a return of xenophobic violence in South Africa. And even if there hadn’t been, Jacob Zuma would scare everyone about it anyway: “Let us isolate all elements who may have sinister agendas, who may want to create havoc and sow pain and destruction in communities.” What a wordsmith, right?
Bashir’s finally got the trifecta! The ICC earlier this week added a warrant for genocide to go along with a previous warrant of war crimes and crimes against humanity. Hope he thanks his mom in his acceptance speech. This is also the ICC’s first warrant for genocide, so congrats to them, too. According to Elise Keppler, senior counsel with the International Justice Program at Human Rights Watch, “President al-Bashir’s stonewalling on the initial ICC warrant against him appears only more outrageous now that he’s also being sought for genocide” Really? That’s what appears outrageous? Not the fact that a second warrant was issued after the first one was followed only by Bashir “kicking out nearly half of Darfur’s humanitarian aid providers?” Ok whatever you say…
And finally, FP reports on Beijing’s lock-down policy for migrants. A banner reads, “Closing up the village benefits everyone.” Really? Everyone? Guess I’ll just have to continue with this trusting mood today…