Posts Tagged ‘health

I have just discovered Gapminder – a brilliant tool which uses animation to show key trends in human welfare. For example, it vividly brings to life how human life expectancy has risen with income and also how child mortality has fallen over the years. Do try it. Hat tip to Will Wilkinson.

The Western media are becoming hysterical over a spate of suicides at Foxconn, a Chinese manufacturer of computers and mobile phones including the Apple iPad. About 12 people (accounts of the exact number vary) have evidently committed suicide among the company’s workers so far this year. It is widely suggested that this suicide rate shows […]

A study in the Lancet, a British medical journal, shows that worldwide mortality of children under five has fallen significantly since 1970. The bad news is that many countries are unlikely to meet the relatively modest Millenium Development Goal (MDG) target of a two thirds reduction in mortality between 1990 and 2015. According to the […]

’Making a difference’: volunteer tourism and development (only abstract available on internet), Tourism Recreation Research 35(1), by Jim Butcher and Peter Smith. A look at changing perceptions of development through the debate about volunteer tourism.  I have added this reference, along with Jim Butcher’s 2002 book on The Moralisation of Tourism and his Ecotourism, NGOs […]

A sweet pill

In: Uncategorized

6 May 2010

I was puzzled to come across numerous articles, including a cover story in Time magazine, about the 50th anniversary of the contraceptive pill as I thought it had already happened several years ago. It turns out that 50 years ago this month America’s Food and Drug Administration did approve the pill. However, the 50th anniversary […]

Until I read this editorial (article truncated)  in today’s Wall Street Journal Europe (published last week in the American edition) I had not realised the close connections between the founder of Earth Day and opposition to DDT. Evidently Gaylord Nelson, the Wisconsin senator who initiated Earth Day, was also a leading opponent of the cheap and effective […]

The rise of the new paternalism, Cato Unbound, by Glen Whitman (lead essay in a special issue on “libertarian paternalism”). Stopping malaria with a chastity belt, Miller-McCune, by Judith Reitman. Con: Earth is never in equilibrium, gazettextra.com, by Richard Lindzen. ‘No, I am the true saviour of the world!’, spiked, by Nathalie Rothschild. Election 2010: […]

I have argued for several years that one reason for the popular obsession with obesity is its symbolic value (see my 2005 essay on “Why people hate fat Americans” on the left hand bar). Human fat is the most visible manifestation of a society which the growth sceptics see as plagued by over-consumption. That in […]

Those interested in American development policy should read the recent speech (PDF) by Hillary Clinton, the secretary of state, on the subject. Although the significance of various concepts has to be decoded she made six main points: * Development should be based on partnership not patronage. This seems to mean that poorer countries should strive […]

The Wall Street Journal has run a piece by Melinda Beck giving lots of examples of how the health of Americans is generally improving. I do not agree with all of her points – for example I oppose bans on public smoking – but the piece is worth reading.