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Sunday, May 6, 2012

Sunday Morning News and Views

A Jurassic Park Flea. When did politics become  sport? A war? Election week around the world.  The Murder Capital of the world. AND a Birdseye View of innovation and food.

Archaeologists in China have uncovered a giant Jurassic flea-like creature. It was several times the size of a modern flea, and  mean and bold. The discovery of Pseudopulex jurassicus and Pseudopulex magnus is written up in the journal Current Biology. 
"We are not leaving any yard of this football field undefended" swears a leading Republican strategist. When did politics become sport? My team vs. your team. Tossing a football. What happened to issues, real impact on consumers and voters, truth, real people and civic responsibility? Why are Americans lowering out most sacred trust and responsibility to a sporting event?  Who benefits?

Another Republican strategist equated the presidential race as "a war" . Are we really in such a violent society where we think  of our civic discourse and responsibility

Gary Johnson was chosen the Libertarian Candidate for President, with 70% of the votes at the Party's nominating commission in Las Vegas . Johnson is the former two times governor of New Mexico. He needs a minimum of 15% in national polls to get on the ballot in most states in the fall.

Voters in North Carolina are getting robo-calls from former President Bill Clinton warning of the consequences if a voter intuitive this week were to pass. Voters will decide on Tuesday whether to add an amendment to the state's constitution that would ban same-sex marriage and civil unions, as well as domestic partnerships. State law already prohibits same-sex marriage, but this measure would have broader consequences.

African American voters could be crucial in the vote over the North Carolina marriage amendment. Blacks make up just over 20-percent of the state's population, and some polls show they strongly favor a ban on same-sex marriage. While activists on both sides make phone calls and put up yard signs, many African Americans are struggling with the issue inside their churches and homes.  

Ron Paul spoke to the GOP State Convention in Sparks Nevada (next to Reno), which was packed with Ron Paul supporters who have vowed to vote for Paul at the national convention despite a warning by the national party that anyone choosing to do so will see their votes not count, and any disruption of crowing Mitt Romney will lead to eviction from the convention.

Vladimir Putin will be inaugurated president for a third term tomorrow, his third four-year term. This time though Putin is facing some tough challenges - demands to fight corruption, reform the judiciary and military, improve the economy, and end human rights violations. Those voices have gotten louder, as more protesters have taken to the streets. Still many doubt Putin will make any changes in the way he governed Russia during his earlier terms in office. 

French voters go to the polls today to choose between incumbent President Nicolas Sarkozy and Socialist contender Francois Hollande.  Polls show Hollande ahead, but most believe the race may be much closer and could go either way. The results of the race are likely to have an impact in Washington DC and international affairs, shifting the US position in Europe, North Africa and the Middle East.

Greece is also voting for a president, under the nations greatest financial crisis since World War II.

Spain has Europe's highest jobless rate, but one organization there is still recruiting labor: The Catholic Church. A group of Spanish bishops have produced a recruitment video telling job-seekers, "I do not offer you a great salary, but I promise you a permanent job." The Church is hoping to capitalize on Spain's poor economy, to boost its otherwise dwindling numbers. And it appears it's had some initial success: The number of Spanish priests rose 4 percent last year, compared to falling 25 percent over the past decade

What is the murder capital of the world? Honduras. The murder rate in Honduras is 69 times the level of Great Brittan and 67 times the rate of the US, and growing. It is more than three and a half  times that of Mexico.Acts of terror by drug cartels, by political groups, by rogue military and by the police themselves have turned the country into a "murder zone."

Mark Kurlansky, is the author of "Clarence Birdseye: The Adventures of a Curious Man." In addition to the history of a company that launched the frozen food industry we all take for granted, he invested in inventing or purchasing machinery that makes many of the food products we enjoy each day. Flash freezing allowed food to remain "fresh"and "retain" its nutrients. It also lowered the price and increased availability on a year round basis that were once seasonal or regional.What Birdseye believed is that possibilities are limited if you have the brains, willingness to experiment and drive to go for it!

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