Study: Pollution Kills More People Than War, Smoking, Hunger, and Other Causes of Death

220px-AlfedPalmersmokestacksWe have previously discussed how environmental dangers remain something of an abstraction for most people who fail to recognize that changes in air or water pollution standards results in high and quantifiable rises in death rates.  Even changes in areas like shipping fuels can translate to thousands of deaths.  However, since these deaths are not immediate and borne privately, the true costs of pollution are often dismissed.  I have been highly critical of the environmental record of the Trump Administration for this reason in rolling back on protections in a variety of areas as well as appointing regulators with anti-environmental records.  Now a new major study has found that environmental pollution kills more people every year that all of the wars.  It exceeds the death tolls for smoking, hunger or natural disasters combined. It kills more than AIDS, tuberculosis and malaria combined. Yet, unlike these causes of death, pollution remains a policy concern that is often pushed to the side for more immediate goals like job creation.  This is not to say that environmental protection would trump all other concerns but rather the real costs of such pollution are rarely discussed in real terms of premature deaths by politicians.

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New Aviation Threat: Superstitious Elderly Chinese Travelers

440px-Lucky_Air_Airbus_A319-112_B-6221_(8742588573)If airlines do not have enough on their hands with Al Qaeda and changing weather patterns, it now has to face a new threat: superstitious elderly Chinese travelers.  For the second time in weeks, a flight was suspended after an elderly Chinese woman threw coins into an airplane engine for good luck . . . and engine failure.  The Lucky Air flight was fortunately halted after other understandably alarmed passengers asked for the metal debris to be removed from their engine.

 

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Pakistani Senate Rejects Age Limit For Marrying Girl As Un-Islamic

Flag_of_PakistanPakistan’s Senate has struck down legislation last week that would have increased the minimum age girls to marry from age from 16 to 18.  We have previously discussed various cases of child brides being forced into marriage under the medieval Islamic traditions and laws governing much of Pakistan.  However, there was hope that the legislature would be more supportive of the basic rights of these girls.  That hope was dashed when the chairman of the Senate Standing Committee, Rehman Malik, explained that such an age limitation on marriage was deemed “Un-Islamic” by clerics who control much of the legislative agenda in Pakistan.

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English Man Catches Fish And Holds Up To His Mouth . . . Fish Jumps Down Throat And Forces Man Into Cardiac Arrest

A twenty-eight-year British man experienced cardiac arrest this week after he accidentally swallowed a 6-inch long Dover sole that he caught on a fishing trip in Boscombe, England.   The man was dangling the fish over his mouth as a joke when it broke free and went right down his throat.  Fortunately, paramedics arrived within minutes and saved his life by removing the fish with forceps.

 

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“Discover All That Is Possible In Dubai”: British Man Faces Three Years in Prison For Touching Hip Of Man In Bar

d4b4d820ee42fbb669867007f7d18569We have been discussing how Dubai is trying to lure Westerners to the country while it is continuing to impose the medieval Islamic Sharia system with predictably abusive results, particularly for women.  Recently we discussed how Dubai police arrested a 30-year-old Ethiopian woman after she gave birth to a child as an unmarried woman.  The latest bizarre case involved Briton Jamie Harron, 27, who is facing a possible three-year jail sentence over claims that he touched a man on the hip in a bar. He has already been given a month long sentence for drinking alcohol and making a rude gesture.

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Britain Moves To Criminalize Reading Extremist Material On The Internet

440px-Official_portrait_of_Amber_Rudd_crop_2England flagFor years, civil libertarians have warned that Great Britain has been in a free fall from the criminalization of speech to the expansion of the surveillance state.  Now the government is pursuing a law that would make the repeated viewing of extremist Internet sites a crime punishable to up to 15 years in prison.  It appears that the government is not satiated by their ever-expanding criminalization of speech. They now want to criminalize even viewing sites on the Internet.  As always, officials are basically telling the public to “trust us, we’re the government.”  UK home secretary Amber Rudd is pushing the criminalization of reading as part of her anti-radicalization campaign . . . which turns out to be an anti-civil liberties campaign.

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FIFA Fines Germany For Fans Chanting Nazi Slogans

Coat_of_arms_of_Germany.svgFlag_of_FIFA.svgThere is an interesting ruling by FIFA which has fined the German soccer federation 32,000 Swiss francs ($33,000) because fans chanted Nazi slogans at a World Cup qualifying game in the Czech Republic. It is a curious decision to penalize a team for the actions of third parties who are not under its control.  It is not clear what FIFA expected the Germans to do to fans chanting in a foreign stadium.  The team not that the offensive fans did not buy tickets through official channels.  How is the team responsible?

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