Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Detecting cancer

A team led by Stanford researchers has developed a prototype blood scanner that can find cancer markers in the bloodstream in early stages of the disease, potentially allowing for earlier treatment and dramatically improved chances of survival.

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Divorce in Bhutan

I have referred to Bhutan in a previous post.

Now, I see another interesting piece of news about the country. Namely, that the divorce rate is rising.


Monday, December 22, 2008

Is socialism still relevant?

A very interesting analysis by Guy Sorman in the Guardian.

The riots that have rampaged across Greece may have many causes, but one that is rarely mentioned is the fracturing of the Greek left into George Papandreou's traditional socialist party, Pasok, and an increasingly radicalised faction that refuses all accommodation with either the European Union or modern economics. To varying degrees, this divide is paralysing socialist parties across Europe.
The lesson from Greece, however, is that what European socialists should fear most is the far left's taste and talent for disruption. For the hollowing out of socialism has a consequence. To paraphrase Marx, a spectre is haunting Europe – the spectre of chaos.

the full article

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Steven Chu of the Lawrence Berkeley National Lab for energy secretary

Steven Chu, the 60 years old Nobel Prize-winning physicist is Barack Obama's choice for energy secretary.

Since 2004, Chu has been director of the Berkeley lab, the oldest of the Energy Department's national laboratories, with its 4,000 employees and a budget of $650 million. The laboratory does only unclassified work and under Chu has been a center of research into biofuels and solar energy technologies. He is a former head of the physics department at Stanford University.

Chu has been a vocal advocate for more research into alternative energy, arguing that a shift away from fossil fuels is essential to combat global warming.

Chu, a Chinese-American, has in recent years campaigned to bring together a cross-section of scientific disciplines to find ways to counter climate change.

Chu as energy secretary would head a department with a $25 billion budget and 14,000 employees and more than 193,000 contract workers. Two-thirds of its budget involves activities related to nuclear weapons research and maintenance.


Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Assisted Suicide

This is a controversial issue. But it has to be debated.

The widow of a former university professor who killed himself has defended the broadcasting of his death on a television programme. Craig Ewert, who suffered from motor neurone disease, died in Switzerland, having been helped by the controversial charity Dignitas.
the video