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South Africa, World

While you were sleeping: 23 May 2017

While you were sleeping: 23 May 2017

Bomb blast at Ariana Grande concert kills 19, Trump to slash welfare, and scientists get superficial.

Tuesday, 23 May 2017

“The world doesn’t make sense, so why should I paint pictures that do?”
Pablo Picasso

 
 

STORY OF THE DAY

Remembering the DDR – No Joking Matter

By GREG MILLS

The small, plastic Trabant is a symbol of what went wrong with the German Democratic Republic, better known as the GDR, DDR, or East Germany, and why, for all of the revisionist mythology, it was a crap system. 

 
 
 

Massive Blast kills 19 in Manchester

A bomb blast at an Ariana Grande concert in Manchester has killed 19. British authorities are treating the attack as a terrorist incident, as scores were rushed to local hospitals. The blast occurred in the Manchester Arena foyer right as Grande was finishing the last song, probably aimed at killing the most people as they departed.

 

Grande ‘broken’ over attack

Meanwhile, the artist whose concert was targeted has expressed her shock over the Manchester bombing. “From the bottom of my heart, I am so so sorry. I don’t have words,” Grande tweeted, noting as well that she was “broken” over the attack. Grande is not known for having a political voice, although no doubt targeting the mass of people rather than Ariana Grande herself was the point all along.

 

Trump goes full Thatcher on budget

Food stamps, children’s health care and a litany of other welfare programmes will be facing severe budget cuts under Trump Budget 2018. The White House revealed the preliminary budget plan late yesterday, indicating a predictable, yet alarming decline that cuts $1.7-trillion from “mandatory” programmes for lower-income Americans. And $1.6-billion has been earmarked for the construction of Trump’s wall. Americans, it seems, are paying for it, not Mexico.

 

Attractive scientists taken less seriously

Scientists are more interested in hearing about work from more attractive colleagues but they are taken less seriously in general. The study by Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences asked thousands of subjects to grade various faces of scientists on attractiveness and another sample was asked how interested they would be in each subject’s research. The correlation was remarkable. If you want your Nobel prize in physics, having the cowlick and braces can actually help you, it seems.

 
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IN NUMBERS

10

The number of drinks per day the top 10% of America’s alcohol drinking population consume on average.

 

FACTS OF THE DAY

Today is World Turtle Day. Cowabunga dude!

There are more skin cancer cases related to tanning beds than there are lung cancer cases to smoking.

 

FEATURED ARTICLES

Op-Ed: Facebook’s puzzling content policies

BY WILLIAM BIRD & THANDI SMITH

 

OPINIONISTAS

Another Kairos Moment

A column by REV LAWRENCE MDUDUZI NDLOVU

 

Eskom risks obsolescence in the energy technology race

A column by SALIEM FAKIR & ELLEN DAVIES

 

An International Brand: Anti-worker, anti-student

A column by PADDY O’HALLORAN

 

Africa Day – the questions still linger

A column by MAKO MUZENDA

 
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