News you can use - Khmer Rouge leaders go on trial for murder of two million people
Who's saying what
The poll stories are actually becoming more interesting the more bitterly disappointing and incompetent our political leaders prove themselves to be. Most recently we have a poll suggesting that the Labor Party would receive a 13% increase in their primary vote if Rudd replaced Gillard today. Matched to the 9% increase if Turnbull was in charge of the Liberals. Man, I would enjoy it if both guys were reinstated. Tabula. Rasa. Let's just forget the last two years ever happened shall we?
A top New Zealand surgeon has operated on a lost penguin, named Happy Feet. I mean, the penguin was also sick, he didn't just operate on it for shits and giggles, but this is the sort of story that you can do with as you will.
Thirty-two years after the fact, the leaders of the Khmer Rouge, the fanatical ultra-Communists who banned schools and money, emptied the cities and killed somewhere around 2 million people (a quarter of Cambodia's population), are going on trial. All in their late 70s/early 80s, there are fears that the defendants may not live to see a verdict, but all qualms aside, this is probably an important part of the process of Cambodia coming to terms with one of the most horrific events in a pretty horrific human century.
Speaking of putting awful despots on trial, the International Criminal Court has just issued an arrest warrant for Gaddafi, his son and his chief of intelligence. The rebels were excited, but I do not expect the trio to turn themselves over to the authorities. Seeing as they are the authorities. Meanwhile the rebels continue to push toward the capital from both the west and the east, raising hopes that a sufficiently proximate rebel force could lead to a mass uprising in Tripoli itself, where the streets are apparently filled with angry young loyalists wielding AK-47s with reckless abandon.
And here be the trial of a German cannibal vampire. Whew. Germans, hey?
As pro-Gaza activists launch another flotilla through Israel's maritime blockade of the region, suggestions that the opening of the border with Egypt is finally allowing some life to pump back into the besieged area. Well, not so much that the opening of the border is doing anything - that's still pretty closed off - but the Egyptians have begun unofficially ignoring everything that goes through the tunnels between Egypt and Gaza, so it's kinda the same thing. Just more poorly regulated. And they are going to help out with the flotilla too, so that's nice of them. And Israel is threatening to ban journalists from the country for ten years if they cover it. Murky!
The results of an inquiry into the disputed election in Afghanistan have claimed that 62 members of the Afghan parliament are there illegitimately. As one might expect, this is causing some consternation. And if there's one thing that the Afghan's do really well/violently, it is definitely consternation.
The two most publicity-attracting and, increasingly, most popular candidates in the Republican Presidential race, Michele Bachmann (who in some districts is now polling alongside Mitt Romney, the other most feasible candidate) and Sarah Palin (yet to announce her candidacy, but loathed by everyone who doesn't love her), were both in Iowa yesterday, the former to officially launch her campaign, the latter to launch a documentary made about her life. Iowa is massively significant in the Presidential race because it's the scene of the very first intra-party votes on the Presidency, held early next year. I struggle to believe that a woman as batshit insane as Bachmann could possibly win the nomination, even in Tea Party ridden America, but her continuing presence on a public stage should make the next 12 months particularly entertaining.
On Tony Abbott, the death of the Liberals as the party of economic reasonableness ("Less taxes, more spending! What could possibly go wrong?!") and the rise of "whingenomics".
Leigh Sales asking why exactly our detention centres have greater levels of media restriction than Guantanamo Bay.
Now, here's one where the headline does the talking: Woman Wakes Up at Her Own Funeral, Has a Heart Attack, and Dies. Reminds me of a funeral my dad went to for the father of a family friend of ours. The father's lifelong best friend got up to do the eulogy, got halfway through, looked up, stopped speaking and then fell over dead. Fun fact: funeral parlours do not do two for ones.
Because it's the New Yorker writing about online dating. Of course it's going to be entertaining/illuminating.
And now here's Tom Hanks doing the weather on Latin American TV. For some reason. They really just keep yelling at him in Spanish while he looks confused. Also, it looks like the weather is a lot more fun on Latin American TV. The YouTube comments, as always, are instructive. A selection: "lol, wow, looks like you need to learn english yourself you uneducated faggot"; "Press '5' for DAT ASS"; and "fuck yall crackers".
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