Bits of news ...
-- "As parliamentary polls get under way in the Czech Republic this week,
artist David Cerny has floated a huge purple statue of an extended
middle finger down the River Vltava in Prague."
-- America's top-dog snoop, the National Security Agency, swept up 70.3 million French phone records in a 30-day period, Le Monde reported today. "The French government on Monday summoned the U.S. ambassador for an explanation." NSA was, as usual, hunkered down and silent.
-- Gay marriage became legal in New Jersey, the 14th state to recognize homosexual nuptials.
-- "Almost 6 million young people are neither in school nor working, according to a study released Monday." That's almost 15 percent of those 16 to 24. Think of the ripple effect ... not to mention the waste.
-- The UK has given the go-ahead for the country's first new nuclear power plant "in a generation." There is to-ing and fro-ing about the impact of outside investment and about the ultimate price to the consumer ... even as toxic water concerns gain traction at the Fukushima nuclear plant that melted down in 2011... and Halliburton (one of the larger shareholders in the American government) reported a 17 percent rise in profits based largely on fossil fuel production... and smog all but shut down the Chinese city of Harbin, a community of 11 million people... and Rio de Janeiro streets were invaded by troops ahead of the Brazilian auction of a major off-short oil reserve. People in Brazil seem to suspect that they'll never see a penny of the enormous payday in the offing.