It's always nice when beard-stroking pundits catch up with what is already d'oh to the average manager of a 7-11 convenience store.
-- The International Labour Organization has issued a report suggesting that the world is on the brink of a wider and deeper recession and that the potential for social unrest is therefore rising. I hate to think how many man-hours and how much money were required to reach that conclusion ... at the same time that hard-pressed Greeks are swarming in the streets and Occupy Wall Street has gone global.
-- Meanwhile, those of an Israel-prone persuasion are yowling because UNESCO (the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization) has agreed to allow Palestine a full membership in the organization... a move that may enhance its bid for full recognition as a state at the U.N. "The United States, Canada, Germany and Holland voted against Palestinian membership. Brazil, Russia, China, India, South Africa and France voted in favor. Britain and Italy abstained." The United States is considering cutting funding to the agency. Those voting against membership in UNESCO say the move will only complicate complicated peace negotiations with Israel ... negotiations that have gone on for years and years and years and years.
-- And those who get the vampire collywobbles when thinking about the bats associated with Halloween (slated for Oct. 31, 2011) may want to think twice about their eek and distaste. Bats eat insects that can infest crops and, in the Mid-Atlantic states millions of them have fallen victim to a fungus ... a fact that may mean more pesticides and higher produce prices for those who go eek.
Bats have been nearly wiped out in states including Virginia, West Virginia, Pennsylvania, New York and Vermont by white-nose syndrome. A survey of six species at 42 sites in those states found that their numbers have declined by almost 90 percent.Halloween was put on hold in many places because of the snowstorm that downed trees and power lines in swaths of the Northeast this year. It was feared that the children trick-or-treating might be in danger from more than drink-your-blood bats.
-- And, in a quirky turn of events, an anonymous group of hackers has laid down the gauntlet to one of the Mexican drug cartels, the Zetas who kidnapped one of the hacking group's members. The threat to out police and other Zeta co-conspirators was issued in Spanish in YouTube and has a certain eerie quality as it reprises the movie 'V.'