All I can say is Elle Fanning is amazing and I can’t even imagine what all she’ll accomplish in the future.
Can we just stop and talk about this for a minute?
Thresh doesn’t make an alliance. Thresh doesn’t waste time liking her. Thresh knows that either he must kill her or she must kill him for one of them to win.
But this is the only way he can repay her for protecting Rue when he couldn’t. It’s the only way he can repay her for honoring Rue when he couldn’t. He honors her by sparing her friend, the girl who would have died for her.
The revolution really doesn’t start with Katniss.
It starts with Rue.
SOMEBODY FINALLY SAID IT
I have thought this many times. And think of the hugely important role their district played as well.
Nelson Mandela’s death has unleashed a flood of whitewashed, politically correct memorials of a man who spent most of his life as a deeply radical and controversial figure.
In the desire to celebrate Nelson Mandela’s life — an iconic figure who triumphed over South Africa’s brutal apartheid regime — it’s tempting to homogenize his views into something everyone can support. This is not, however, an accurate representation of the man.
Mandela was a political activist and agitator. He did not shy away from controversy and he did not seek — or obtain — universal approval. Before and after his release from prison, he embraced an unabashedly progressive and provocative platform. As one commentator put itshortly after the announcement of the freedom fighter’s death, “Mandela will never, ever be your minstrel. Over the next few days you will try so, so hard to make him something he was not, and you will fail. You will try to smooth him, to sandblast him, to take away his Malcolm X. You will try to hide his anger from view.”
As the world remembers Mandela, here are some of the things he believed that many will gloss over.
1. Mandela blasted the Iraq War and American imperialism. Mandela called Bush “a president who has no foresight, who cannot think properly,” and accused him of “wanting to plunge the world into a holocaust” by going to war in Iraq. “All that (Mr. Bush) wants is Iraqi oil,” he said. Mandela even speculated that then-Secretary-General Kofi Annan was being undermined in the process because he was black. “They never did that when secretary-generals were white,” he said. He saw the Iraq War as a greater problem of American imperialism around the world. “If there is a country that has committed unspeakable atrocities in the world, it is the United States of America. They don’t care,” he said.
2. Mandela called freedom from poverty a “fundamental human right.” Mandela considered poverty one of the greatest evils in the world, and spoke out against inequality everywhere. “Massive poverty and obscene inequality are such terrible scourges of our times — times in which the world boasts breathtaking advances in science, technology, industry and wealth accumulation — that they have to rank alongside slavery and apartheid as social evils,” he said. He considered ending poverty a basic human duty: “Overcoming poverty is not a gesture of charity. It is an act of justice. It is the protection of a fundamental human right, the right to dignity and a decent life,” he said. “While poverty persists, there is no true freedom.”
3. Mandela criticized the “War on Terror” and the labeling of individuals as terrorists, even Osama Bin Laden, without due process. On the U.S. terrorist watch list until 2008 himself, Mandela was an outspoken critic of President George W. Bush’s war on terror. He warned against rushing to label terrorists without due process. While calling for Osama bin Laden to be brought to justice, Mandela said, “The labeling of Osama bin Laden as the terrorist responsible for those acts before he had been tried and convicted could also be seen as undermining some of the basic tenets of the rule of law.”
4. Mandela called out racism in America. On a trip to New York City in 1990, Mandela made a point of visiting Harlem and praising African Americans’ struggles against “the injustices of racist discrimination and economic equality.” He reminded a larger crowd at Yankee Stadium that racism was not exclusively a South African phenomenon. “As we enter the last decade of the 20th century, it is intolerable, unacceptable, that the cancer of racism is still eating away at the fabric of societies in different parts of our planet,” he said. “All of us, black and white, should spare no effort in our struggle against all forms and manifestations of racism, wherever and whenever it rears its ugly head.”
5. Mandela embraced some of America’s biggest political enemies. Mandela incited shock and anger in many American communities for refusing to denounce Cuban dictator Fidel Castro or Libyan Colonel Muammar Gaddafi, who had lent their support to Mandela against South African apartheid. “One of the mistakes the Western world makes is to think that their enemies should be our enemies,” he explained to an American TV audience. “We have our own struggle.” He added that those leaders “are placing resources at our disposal to win the struggle.” He also called the controversial Palestinian Liberation Organization leader Yasser Arafat “a comrade in arms.”
6. Mandela was a die-hard supporter of labor unions. Mandela visited the Detroit auto workers union when touring the U.S., immediately claiming kinship with them. “Sisters and brothers, friends and comrades, the man who is speaking is not a stranger here,” he said. “The man who is speaking is a member of the UAW. I am your flesh and blood.”
Dwindling stocks, an exclusion zone and patrolling Israeli gunboats all make life difficult for the fishermen of Gaza.
According to the United Nation’s Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO), there are some 4,000 boat-owning families in Gaza. In 2004 they landed nearly 3,000 tonnes of fish. It was crucial to the nutrition of the 1.7 million people of the Gaza Strip, more than half of whom were dependent on food aid, even then.
Fishing inshore is poor, and there’s an added danger because of Gaza’s failed sewage system. That was built to serve 400,000 people, and it has collapsed because of war damage and lack of materials to maintain it. Eighty-nine million litres of raw or partially treated waste water go straight into the sea every day. Last year the fishermen’s catch was less than half what it had been 10 years before. They are now the poorest section of society, according to the UN, with 95% of fishing families dependent on food handouts.
Gaza is now undergoing power cuts of 12 hours on most days. The price of diesel had doubled. Supplies of fuel and much else had been smuggled in through tunnels from Egypt, but those had mainly been closed since the Muslim Brotherhood regime fell in July and the Egyptian army took over. The Gaza Strip has been under a severe economic blockade imposed by Israel since 2006 and it has limited imports and exports and led to a major economic decline and wide-reaching humanitarian crisis.
In the year to November 2013, Al Mezan, a Gaza-based human rights NGO that logs infringements of law and damage to property, reported 136 Israeli attacks against fishermen in Gaza’s waters. These injured eight fishermen, including a child. In 2013 Israeli forces arrested 18 fishermen, confiscated seven boats, and damaged or destroyed fishing equipment on 23 separate occasions. At least five Palestinian fishermen, all judged “non-combatants” by the UN, have died at sea in confrontations with the Israeli gunboats since 2010. — Read More
Photos by Gianluca Panella for the Observer
"…a writer was a person who hated writing."
—Slapstick, Kurt Vonnegut
The understated accomplishments of Disney’s Sleeping Beauty.
1. Contrary to popular belief, waking up early isn’t going to drastically alter your life or effect how you’re feeling. So sleep till noon and relish in the way laying in bed all day makes you feel a little more human.
2. Drinking your coffee ‘black’ doesn’t make you cooler or more sophisticated than the rest of us who load in milk and sugar.
3. Being unimpressed by everything makes you look like a twat. Get excited, be overly passionate about something. Enthusiasm is fun.
4. Hating yourself isn’t romantic.
5. Eat whatever you want. your friend’s a vegan? Awesome. Listen to her talk about how great she feels because of it while you tuck in to some chocolate cake. Tell her you feel just as great."
I’m in love with this job already.