Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Mid-Week Post

The magma chamber of the work week...

North Korean defectors Shin Dong-Hyuk and Jee Heon-Ah gave testimony to a three-member UN inquiry commission regarding the human rights abuses in the rogue state:

Harrowing accounts from defectors now living in South Korea related how guards chopped off a man's finger, forced inmates to eat frogs and a mother to kill her own baby.

"I had no idea at all ... I thought my whole hand was going to be cut off at the wrist, so I felt thankful and grateful that only my finger was cut off," said Shin Dong-hyuk, punished for dropping a sewing machine.

Born in a prison called Camp 14 and forced to watch the execution of his mother and brother whom he turned in for his own survival, Shin is North Korea's best-known defector and camp survivor. He said he believed the U.N. panel was the only way to improve human rights in the isolated and impoverished state.

"Because the North Korean people cannot stand up with guns like Libya and Syria ... I personally think this is the first and last hope left," Shin said. "There is a lot for them to cover up, even though they don't admit to anything."

There are a 150,000-200,000 people in North Korean prison camps, according to independent estimates, and defectors say many inmates are malnourished or worked to death.

After more than a year and a half ruling North Korea, Kim Jong Un, 30, has shown few signs of changing the rigid rule of his father, Kim Jong Il, and grandfather, state founder Kim Il Sung. Neither have there been signs of a thaw or loss of control inside the tightly controlled state.

Jee Heon-a, 34, told the Commission that from the first day of her incarceration in 1999, she discovered that salted frogs were one of the few things to eat.

"Everyone's eyes were sunken. They all looked like animals. Frogs were hung from the buttons of their clothes, put in a plastic bag and their skins peeled off," she said. "They ate salted frogs and so did I."

Speaking softly, she took a deep breath when describing in detail how a mother was forced to kill her own baby.

"It was the first time I had seen a newborn baby and I felt happy. But suddenly there were footsteps and a security guard came in and told the mother to turn the baby upside down into a bowl of water," she said.

"The mother begged the guard to spare her, but he kept beating her. So the mother, her hands shaking, put the baby face down in the water. The crying stopped and a bubble rose up as it died. A grandmother who had delivered the baby quietly took it out."

North Korea has an estimated concentration camp population of 150 to 200, 000 people and the UN, which allows China to sit permanently on its security council and has vetoed action against North Korea, mustered only three people to pretend to care about the suffering of the North Koreans.

We must withdraw from the UN today.

I would be far more concerned about a poor economy than religious symbols, O Graying Province of Quebec:

QMI Agency has learned the Parti Quebecois government plans to amend the Quebec charter of rights and freedoms and ban most religious signs and symbols from public institutions such as daycare centres, public schools, hospitals, clinics, and other government buildings.
Visible crosses, yarmulkes, hijabs, niqabs, burkas and turbans would all be banned.
According to sources close to the government, all health workers, public school teachers and public daycare workers would have to leave their religious symbols at home when they go to work.

I just find it awesome that someone drew a parallel between Ted Cruz and Wolverine:

Texas Sen. Ted Cruz released his birth certificate, and it shows a dual U.S./Canadian citizenship ...
"Vote for me, bub!"

The next time someone points out how unfair their $10-$14 minimum wage is, point out that it would take six-point-two hours of work  for an Afghan to afford one Big Mac:

The results are not altogether surprising. Workers in the West earn far more than their counterparts in Asia and Africa. And as with most things, the people of Sierra Leone and Afghanistan have it the worst. The hourly minimum wage in Sierra Leona is equivalent to 3 cents a hour (U.S. dollars), meaning it takes them the five-and-a-half-days to earn enough to buy a Big Mac. Not that there is a McDonald's anywhere near Sierra Leona, but you get the point. (For those who are interested, the closest would be in Marrakesh, 2,600km away). Afghans have it considerably better, but only by abysmal standards, as it takes the average worker there just over six hours to earn enough to buy a burger.

Remember, atheists are allegedly smarter than believers:

Here's the deal: The reason the Church venerates the Blessed Virgin Mary is that the Church has taught, since the time of the apostles, that Jesus was conceived in her womb by the power of the Holy Spirit.  That's why there's that big paper trail about her,not just in the Bible, but in the prayers, art, and theological writings of the Church from the gospels to 431 AD.  Cyril of Alexandria didn't have a TARDIS and did not go back in time and plant all the Mary stuff all over the Empire in order to make her sudden appearance at the Council of Ephesus plausible and spice up the liturgy with a little coded Isis worship.  If you think this is what happened, you should probably refrain from boasting about your superior intellect and grasp of the Hidden History of Our Time, unless you are going to do a guest spot on Coast to Coast AM with Art Bell.


And now, churches that will make you say: "Oh my God! The goggles do nothing!" and the sloth-compadres, wombats. Enjoy.


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