Sunday, July 17, 2011

The Only Known North Korean Prison Camp Escapee - No One Cares?

I saw this article this evening shared by a friend on Facebook. It's about Shin Dong-Hyuk, the only known escapee from a North Korean prison labor camp.

I got to page two, read this paragraph, and nearly spit my diet root beer all over my cat (she's laying on my desk in front of my keyboard; I don't chase my cats down to spit stuff at them):
Being the sole escapee in the capitalist South from the prison-camp horrors of the communist North has not made Shin a celebrity or afforded him much of a living. "Escape to the Outside World" has sold about 500 copies from its single Korean-language printing of 3,000. No edition in English is being undertaken, he said. [emphasis mine]

I have a hard time believing that this could be due to lack of interest. This must be a problem of a lack of exposure. This is way too important of a story for it to be languishing from people's indifference. I hope that's the case, anyway. The article is now 2.5 years old, and thus far it doesn't appear that this has happened.

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Where Were You When The Bacon Riots Began?

Just some fun here, there have been no bacon riots... yet:

A crisis worth worrying about: Bacon prices are about to skyrocket

It’s because of our stupid energy policy. Seriously — we’re making ethanol out of corn, which drives up the price of corn, and everything that eats corn gets more expensive too. Pigs eat corn. People like Mitt Romney support ethanol subsidies. So under his policy of supporting ethanol subsidies, your bacon prices will necessarily skyrocket. It’s just math.
You can read the rest of the article here.

Sunday, July 10, 2011

Some Big Name Companies Refusing To Hire Smokers

This article contains a bit at its end about companies with names you'll recognize just flat out refusing to hire people who smoke:

Insurer Humana Inc. said this month it won't hire smokers in Arizona. And other companies, such as Macy's Inc. and Pepsico Inc., require those who smoke to pay more for their health insurance, according to a recent article in Businessweek. The story also said Union Pacific and Scotts Miracle-Gro will not hire people who smoke.
Follow this link if you would like to read the rest of the article, which is mainly about the new cancer and corpses labels that will be required to be on cigarette packs and advertisements soon. It says in the article that some tobacco companies are suing the government over this, which I'm glad to see. If the Feds want to piss away money putting up cancer and corpse posters, fine (though I'd like to see by what constitutional authority they could do even that), but compelling private companies to do so? What's next? Pictures of fat people on the sides of KFC chicken buckets?

I digress. This anti-smoker hiring trend, this seems a bit harsh to me, but I can't say I blame these companies given how insurers treat smokers. It all translates into higher costs in the end and that shows up in the premiums.

I do wonder though, would these employers react differently if smokers were in fact just using bionic cigs instead?

I certainly wouldn't mind that.

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