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Monday, January 23, 2017

Links - 23rd January 2017

BBC World Service - The Food Chain, Big Beer - "SAB Miller are good corporate citizens. And they respect beer culture. They understand that beer is different in different parts of the world. If you look at Africa for instance where the company started, they do a huge amount there to keep the beer industry going. They actually sell raw materials to the growing emerging craft brewers in South Africa"

BBC World Service - The Food Chain, The Olympics of Chinese Food - "'He Xiaolong is the youngest winner. He's just 28.'
'Chinese food has 3 factors. The first one is cutting skill. I can cut the tofu like a hair. The second one is flavour. The third one is fire. When you cook Chinese we often have to use thermometer. And I have 2 hopes. First one, I want to eat the rice. I miss rice very much. And second is sleep. It's so tired. But, most exciting, I win'"

BBC World Service - The Food Chain, Should We All Be Vegans? - "'As with most things in life, it's really not quite that simple. Take the environment. According to research by Professor Paul Fischbeck at Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh, vegetables like lettuce, aubergine, celery and cucumber can have a bigger environmental footprint than meat like pork or chicken.'
'Not all vegetables are created equal. Some of them require far greater greenhouse gas emissions than others. For example if you compare head lettuce to pork products like bacon, they can be 3.5, almost 4 times greater when it comes to greenhouse gas emissions. But if you look at water, cherries or mushrooms or mangoes could be 5 or 6 times more water required per 1,000 calories than say bacon. If you go with the fact that you need about 2,000 calories a day to maintain your weight, how are you getting those 2,000 calories?'
'What is the environmental footprint of lettuce?'
'It turns out that if you look at the pounds of greenhouse gas emissions associated with 1,000 calories of lettuce, it's about 16 pounds. If you have a truck full of lettuce, it requires the same amount or almost the same amount of energy as moving a truckload of beef or pork. But you get far fewer calories in that truckload... you have a diet which will be a mixture of various things, and the question is how do you compare things? Our analysis looked at the recommended diet by the US Government of what we should be eating and we compared it to what we actually eat. And it turns out that the healthier diet that's recommended by the government has a larger greenhouse gas footprint and requires more water than what we currently do eat'"

Otto Radio - The Food Chain: Vegan Babies: Should You Restrict Your Child's Diet? - "'You cannot nourish a robust baby merely on foods from plants, says Nina Planck. She's the author of the Real Food series in the States and she's also written the Farmer's Market Cookbook. She's gone so far as to call the vegan diet dangerous when it comes to children'...
'A 100% plant-based, total vegan diet is really unprecedented in all of human history. There are no traditional human societies which are multi-generational on a diet strictly of plants without any synthetic supplements. It's simply not a natural human diet. And I think you can read from the advocates of strict vegan diets that most of them do recommend supplements. And I think that's a step forward because it's a recognition that you need an artificial diet to supplement the plants... I think the entire history of replacing real food and whole food with food made by humans in factories and in labs is a history of failure in that we're always discovering something too late after people are in ill health or die. Some may remember, they fed a whole bunch of smokers beta-carotene supplements... the results were unhelpful. More people died of lung cancer, more smokers died of lung cancer on the supplements. So why might that be when we know that people who eat lots of yellow and green and red foods full of natural beta-carotenes have on balance less cancer? Well, it might be that when we isolate these things we fail to account for lots of things in them that we are ignorant of'"

BBC World Service - The Food Chain, Dining with the Dead - "In medieval times, it wasn't unknown for people to devote more than half the value of their entire estate to pay for the food and drink at their own funeral. The hope was that a really good post-burial party would be more likely to encourage your friends, family and neighbours to pray for you when you were gone... [Ghana's] carved out a reputation for hosting some of the continent's most extravagant funerals"

BBC World Service - The Food Chain, In Search of Lost Foods - "[On the consequences of the Green Revolution] '3/4 of the total calories consumed in the world are coming from only 12 crops and 5 animal species and you can compare that to the fact that humans have used more than 7,000 species of plants and that there are another 70,000 plants which are known to have edible parts"

BBC Radio 4 - Best of Today, Wednesday's business with Dominic O'Connell - "'Many of our trading partners have human rights issues. We don't get progress by shouting from the sidelines, we get progress by engaging and many British investors are making a contribution. They're employing for example Saudi women. We are seeing very real progress in Saudi on a number of issues including women's employment'
'So you would say actually it helps to do business with these countries'
'It helps open up to the outside world, absolutely"

BBC Radio 4 - Today, Iceland: country or grocery shop? - "The Icelandic government up till 4 years ago owned a significant stake in our company. Just as recently as June of this year we worked very closely with the Icelandic FA promoting both our brand and the Icelandic football team. There is a very strong link over the past decade of us working together very closely with the Icelandic government"

BBC Radio 4 - Today, Who is Pieter Brueghel the Younger? - "There're 10 Brueghels who were painters altogether, 10 of them. And the issue is slightly complicated because the father of the Brueghels was the greatest of them all, Pieter Brueghel the Elder, spelled his name with an H in the middle for the first half of his career and then for reasons no one knows... he decided to take the H out of his name. So there's a confusion there. But it was he who was the really great painter. His son Pieter Brueghel the younger was a wonderful painter but his great fame is for doing copies of his father's paintings. But then Pieter Brueghel had another son Jan Brueghel who was much more original and famous for his flower paintings"

BBC Radio 4 - Best of Today, Will Trump carry out his campaign promises? - "When I look at your country it's a great example. You know the climate change policies and green initiatives basically put your steel industry out of the market. Two things: one is China dumping steel on the world market. But the other thing is the cost of your electricity today is as I understand it is 90% higher than it used to be. And so you can't afford to have foundries and steel plants"

Listen to Aleppo: Nearly one million living under seige - Omny personal radio - "Some of the surgeons now, everybody talks to me and wants to know whether or not we could get to talk to a surgeon or doctor in Aleppo. But actually the surgeons and the doctors in Aleppo don't want to speak anymore because they feel totally and utterly abandoned and they feel ttat they've almost become a spectator sport so that they tell the situation, how bad it is, but nothing is done to try and help them"

BBC Radio 4 - Today, Lord Hill: 'Choice is stupid or intelligent Brexit' - "We do have, because of the nature of British politics, a much more transactional, rational, economic based
approach to life. And people here, I think, forget that for the Europeans their project is an emotional project, it’s a political project, that actually it’s quite a romantic project. So if we think in the UK that ultimately economic rationalism will win out in terms of the negotiation, that is to misread how the Europeans will approach this negotiation"

BBC Radio 4 - Best of Today, Clinton's loss 'not a gender defeat' - "The way she talked about gender was tone deaf. Even in her last speech, I mean, people in America right now have such terrible problems. I can't stress this enough. Our climate is deteriorating, there is no middle class, increasing there are bubbles of rich people and everybody else has terrible lives, people working two jobs and she always phrased it: we can break that last, hardest glass ceiling. Well that's nice if you've got everything else in your life lined up but even if you're a woman and you care about women's issues and you care about women's leadership, you wanna hear her talking about your family and your budget and your pension and your vanishing IRA, or minimum wage job, or unemployment surival...
We're in a time when the only thing, and you're seeing it with the Trump election, the elites will not pay attention to populism, so it's been redirected into racism and xenophobia and what everyone in the world needs to get is that ordinary people are seeing through the agenda of globalisation to take sovereignty away from ordinary people"
Is Naomi Wolf a misogynist?

BBC Radio 4 - Best of Today, Did the rise of 'populism' cost Cameron his job? - "I think the word is meaningless... It doesn't mean anything to me. It's become a euphemism for exploiting the baser instincts of the general public, which is a profoundly patronising way of looking at the general public. But to say that he was defeated by this and he's got to combat it sounds like an old-fashioned aristocrat complaining about the tenants in rebellion. It just is ridiculous. What is happening now, and this is fascinating, is almost all these words are degenerating in our hands. We can't use left and right, we can't use liberal conservative, we can't use globalist and nationalist in their traditional terms anymore because they've become alternative words of abuse and approbation. Depending on what other message you're trying to get across. And I think what's so interesting about politics now is everything is shattered...
Traditionally, you could say well on the right there are conservatives who like the system as it is, on the left there are people who want to change it. Now I find on the whole people on the left want to keep things as they are. They want the traditional mechanisms of the state, the subsidy and so on, to remain in place, because there are groups they are defending. People sort of on the right are now people who are challenging that and feel left behind - this new phrase the left behinders. But all that is really happening is that somewhere the tectonic plates are shifting and we haven't yet found a language to describe it... The word liberalism desperately needs redefining. We know it's a sort of feel-good approach to the world, a general appreciation of other people. We can't express that as a political program anymore because it's become a way of defending interest groups... what's new here is clearly that the loyalties that used to drive politics no longer exist. People who are what we might call members of the working class do not vote Labour anymore, they suddenly vote UKIP. What's going on here?"

Listen to Friday's business with Katie Prescott - Omny personal radio - "In the 1930s, when the world was in similarly dark times, one of the things that averted fascism for example in the United States and in Britain was the strengthening of the labour movement. Giving people, not just a voice on their digital computers but starting to create organisations so that the people who are losing out feel that they have some influence over the rules and they have some influence over what's gonna regulate the lives of their children"

BBC Radio 4 - Today, Victoria series creator reveals queen 'crush' - "She really got on badly with her mother who she felt was trying to use her for power. And I think Albert, you know, it all came together for her and she realised that he was the one for her but she wasn't going to give up any power. And it's interesting. They spend 6 weeks before they get married negotiating this very interesting contract about what he's allowed to have and whether he can have a title and how much money he can have. It's a quite serious pre-nup so there's a lot of quite modern elements to this marriage"

BBC Radio 4 - Today, Does Great British Bake Off help contestants turn pro? - "[Deidre Critchley who started a jam making business then ended it] You can have a hobby and you can be passionate about it, but the reality of running your own business can often take you away from doing those, doing the jam making... my children don't like to eat it as much as they used to"

BBC Radio 4 - Best of Today, 'People feel we're not a united nation anymore' - "'I felt a wave of optimism. It really did feel as if England had won the World Cup. It was that sort of feeling of euphoria. Like oh my gosh, we've done it'
'That for me was the first time in my life in this country that I'd witnessed and been a part of true democracy'
'I felt we were getting control back over over our country. It seemed that we'd lost our way over the last 20, 30 years'
'One voted counted for one towards a total outcome, which never happens'"

New Calais asylum plan would be 'migrant magnet' - BBC News - "I don't think the asylum system was set up on the assumption that there would be hundreds and hundreds of people trying get to Europe and that's what we've faced in the last few years. We've seen in Italy and Greece that it's under massive pressure and that is leading to questions about the whole Schengen border free system in other parts of the EU. We can't be exempt from that. We've actually been
protected by not being in Schengen. And having our island border. But the whole asylum is under huge pressure. Whether it can last in this state, I don't know"

BBC Radio 4 - Best of Today, 'Intrusive medical tests not accurate' - "I spoke to somebody at an asylum centre in the UK recently who said that he's had people with grey hair who all claim to be 17. Not that anyone believes it. They'll do it with a smile on their face, but they it because it takes that little bit longer to sort the case out and the longer people can stay, the less chance there is that they're gonna get removed so we mustn't be naive about this. I mean it's no good that Lily Allen turning up with tears in her eyes and all the rest of it. We need to be quite hard nosed here. People are desperate, I understand that and they will say what they need to say to get in. When I was at the camp at Calais there were caravans up with notices on saying: 'come here, we'll coach you in what to say'...
'If we don't raise this question and we allow ourselves to be carried along on a tide of emotion, Lily Allen style with tears in our eyes, we're not actually going to be able to help the people who need our help. What we're just going to end up doing is very quickly exhausting the well of hospitality that exists in Britain. I mean people in Britain I think want to help children but we don't want to be taken for a free ride either by people who seem to have got to the front of the queue even though they clearly look in some cases a lot older than 18. And there is a test that will determine people's age, it's used across the world. It seems to be perfectly accepted. It was first suggested by a Labour Minister about 10 years ago. And all I'm saying is that that is one of the tools that we could use. I don't accept that it's intrusive to take an X-ray of someone. Someody who's willing to throw themselves onto an electrified rail line or jump into a moving lorry isn't going to be terribly worried about having an X-ray"

BBC Radio 4 - Best of Today, 'Voting won't be about Trump's personality' - "'A clown and a sexist and heavens know what else. That proves he's not fit to be president, many would say?'
'No, I would say the moderators have proved they're not fit to be moderators. Consider this to judge our moderators. We've now had, what is it, 4 1/2 hours of presidential debates across 3 debates. The first question about immigration was asked tonight. Immigration, that is the issue that has shaken this entire election year... No one is voting for Donald Trump because of his personality or his character. As I say: In Trump We Trust: E Pluribus Awesome! It's all about his issues. No, it's not like Americans looked around the country and thought: I know, let's run this gauche, loud reality TV star. He was the only one who would talk about these issues and why? It's because the business round table, you know these various business lobbyist groups, they want the cheap labour. It is 100% the issues which is why, I might also add, at the risk of sounding crazy, I don't fully trust the polls right now because we are going to have millions of people voting in this election who haven't voted for 20 years. And you know how do we account these people?... If taking strong positions and resisting brutal, non-stop attacks from every media outlet for more than a year now on positions that will put America first, I think that's a sign of character, and on that issue of character, Trump is head and shoulders above anybody running for President this year"

BBC Radio 4 - Best of Today, Thursday's business with Dominic O'Connell - "This could be enormously invigorating for the UK. We are now being forced to focus on 85% of the world economy rather than the 15% which is the European Union. Now when we joined the European Union it was about a third of the world economy. It was very sensible to try and get access to the European Union and the single market, but the world has changed...
'Most people really resist the idea of paying for financial advice, don't they? Because for decades we've had financial advice paid for 'free' because the people selling the stuff paid the advisors'...
'The cost was hidden in commission and somehow it seemed as if it was free. And yet if you think of any other professional financial service, you'd expect to pay an accountant, why wouldn't you pay a financial advisor? What I think has to happen is advice, the cost of providing it needs to be brought down'"

BBC Radio 4 - Best of Today, GCSEs: Why do girls do better than boys? - "This gap opened up when GCSEs replaced O levels. O levels were examined at the end. GCSEs throughout the course with lots of coursework, and girls tend to apply themselves and work harder through the whole course. Boys on the whole... tend to prefer end of course examinations. Now, if I'm right, we'll be able to see this because with the new GCSEs... we're reverting to end of course examinations... I think we fuss too much as a society if different groups achieve different outcomes... [The gap] is not in all subjects of course. Boys are ahead in mathematics and they tend to go on to do the sciences, or mathematics at A level and on to university. And that's thought to be a bigger problem from the point of view of girls. That may just be the way people are"

BBC Radio 4 - Today, Why do we still love the pub quiz? - "The stakes are extremely low in pub quizzes. So if you Google stuff in order to win it, you're sacrificing a lot of self-respect for the sake of 4 pounds. I don't think it's worth it for the vast majority of people...11% of people who do pub quizzes have used their phone. But 27% of people have deliberately and loudly discussed a wrong answer in the hope that another team might be eavesdropping...
What is considered a lucky number in Italy because when written as Roman numerals it forms an anagram of the Latin for 'I have lived'?
The answer is 17

The Acceptability of Homosexuality in Ancient Greece

"For Greenberg the homosexuality of Classical Athens - subject of a definitive study by Kenneth Dover - was transgenerational (in that the lover was older, the beloved little more than a boy without the first growth of a beard); it was based on a differential of power (the lover was older, richer, more experienced. and took the active role; the beloved was younger, without resources, gaining an education, and took the passive role): it was transitional (both parties filled the roles of beloved and lover at different stages); and it was not exclusive (it was indeed "just a stage they were going through", and the lover would frequently have a wife and children at home and in due course the beloved would become an adult citizen and take a wife). This homosexuality — more accurately pederasty — played an institutionalized role in Greek society in the 5th and 4th centuries BC...

However, though 4th-century BC Athens readily accepted this “homosexual” ethos of eromenos and erastes (with evidence provided by the Attic comedies of Aristophanes, by Plato, and by Aeschines’ speech of 346 BC in prosecution of Timarchus), the freedoms were constrained. The eromenos who, voluntarily or due to parental pressure, gave his favours for material gain in overt prostitution lost his place among the citizens and could be arraigned for hubris if he subsequently attempted to act as a citizen by speaking in the assembly or holding reserved ofiice. Similarly. the man or boy who took the passive (receptive) role in anal intercourse (who allowed himself to be penetrated) separated himself from the citizens and was ordered with women, foreigners, and prostitutes. The role of the beautiful yet aloof object of a worthy male citizen's desire was allowed the beardless youth: a coeval relationship between men — more especially if anal intercourse was imputed to it — was not."

--- Encyclopedia of Ancient Greece (ed. Nigel Wilson)

In other words, Ancient Greece was certainly not a gay paradise
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