Thursday, April 30, 2009

Monday, April 27, 2009

A Buddhist preacher in Thailand has announced plans for new guidelines aimed at curbing the flamboyant behavior of gay and transgender monks

The good manners curriculum - the country's first - is being introduced in the northern province of Chiang Rai. The senior monk said he was particularly concerned by effeminate activities among novices such as the wearing of make-up and tight robes. More than 90% of the Thai population are followers of Buddhism. Tales of monks behaving badly are nothing new in Thailand. In recent years, they have been accused of abuses of their exalted position in society that range from amassing dozens of luxury cars, to running fake amulet scams, to violating their vows of celibacy, our correspondent says. Senior monk Phra Maha Wudhijaya Vajiramedhi said he would address issues like smoking, drinking alcohol, walking and going to the toilet properly, which are all detailed in the traditional 75 Dharma principles of Buddhism, and the 227 precepts for monks. He was especially concerned, he said, by the flamboyant behavior of gay and transgender monks, who can often be seen wearing revealingly tight robes, carrying pink purses and having effeminately-shaped eyebrows. Thailand has a very large and visible population of transgender men, and Phra Vajiramedhi acknowledged that it was difficult to exclude them from the monkhood but he hoped his course could at least persuade them to curb their more extrovert habits. If successful, the good manners course, at the Novice Demonstration School, would be replicated at other Buddhist monasteries and seminaries, he said.

Saturday, April 25, 2009

Close to one million women are raped every year in South Africa, one of the countries worst-hit by the AIDS virus

Only one in 35 cases is reported, while the others suffer in silence.

Muslim immigration and Europe's turn to the right

Bruce Bawer writes about the problems that Islamic immigration has caused in Europe.

According to the CDC, 1 in 16 black men will become infected with HIV and 1 in 30 black women will be infected with HIV in their lifetime

African Americans are about 12% of the population but are infected with almost half of the new HIV cases. The rate of new AIDS cases among Latino men is twice that of white men and the rate among Latino women is four times that of white women.

South Africa - another failed state

Ed West has some uncomfortable questions for anti-Apartheid campaigners.

Education and GDP

The educational-achievement gap between the U.S. and higher-performing nations such as Finland and South Korea is hurting the economy.

Genetic predisposition to impulsivity is a trait predictive of alcoholism

Nicholas Grahame of the Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis School of Science used selective breeding for 30 generations to produce mice that were high-volume alcohol drinkers and others that avoided consuming alcohol. The genetically different mice were presented with a choice between a small, immediate reward and a large, delayed reward. By adjusting the quantity of the immediate reward up and down based on choice behavior, the task allowed the researchers to test the impulsivity of the rodents. The study found the mice with high alcohol preferring genes were more impulsive than their low drinking counterparts - demonstrating that predisposition to impulsivity is predictive of alcoholism. "Our data can clearly be extrapolated to humans and strongly suggests that impulsivity contributes to high alcohol drinking," Grahame said in a statement.
"Consequently, the diagnosis of any disorder associated with impulsivity, such as attention deficit disorder or bipolar disorder, is cause for concern about future problems with alcoholism."

Related:

Impulsive Behavior Influenced By Genes Can Preceed The Development Of Alcoholism

Study Finds Genetic Link to Impulsive Behavior

Saturday, April 18, 2009

Apparently Neanderthals had races

New research shows that Neanderthals can be genetically divided into at least three different races:
The conclusions of this study are consistent with existing paleoanthropological research and show that Neanderthals can be divided into at least three groups: one in western Europe, a second in the Southern area and a third in western Asia.

Hat tip, Razib!

12.7 million Mexican immigrants lived in the U.S. in 2008, a 17-fold increase since 1970, according to a study released by the Pew Hispanic Center

About 11% of everyone born in Mexico is currently living in the United States. Mexicans now account for 32% of all immigrants living in this country.

Women and race preference

Women have a preference for men of their own race.

Are our personalities decided at birth?

Personality types are linked with structural differences in the brain - which could explain why one child grows up to be impulsive and outgoing while another becomes diligent and introspective. Anatomical differences between the brains of 85 people have been measured and linked with the four main categories of personality types as defined by psychiatrists using a clinically recognised system of character evaluation. The researchers said the brain differences are structural and can be measured as variations in the size of specific regions of the brain that appear to be linked with each of the four personality types.

Hat tip, Steve Sailer!

Related:

Personality is an hereditary trait

Obama brother accused of sex attack on young girl

Barack Obama's half brother was refused a visa to enter Britain after being accused of an attempted sex attack on a young girl in Berkshire. Kenya-based Samson Obama tried to get into Britain on his way to Washington for his family's big day, the historic inauguration in January 2009. But eagle-eyed immigration officials at East Midlands Airport, using the latest biometric tests, discovered he was linked to an incident here in November 2008. The hi-tech database revealed that Samson - who manages a mobile phone shop just outside Nairobi - was the same man arrested by British police after he approached a group of young girls, including a 13 year-old, and allegedly tried to sexually assault one of them. He then followed them into a cafe where he became aggressive and was asked to leave by the owner. That's when police were called and Samson was arrested. He supplied officers with his mother's address in Bracknell but gave them a false ID, claiming to be Henry Aloo, believed to be a genuine asylum seeker. Mum Kezia, 67, has lived in Bracknell for six years. She married the US president's father Barack Obama Sr in Kenya when she was a teenager.

Related:

Would you give a “personal tour of the White House” to this man?

An unemployed Algerian chemist has been jailed for spraying a mix of urine and feces on food, wine and children's books in several British stores

Sahnoun Daifallah was sentenced to nine years in prison after being found guilty of four counts of contaminating goods. The 42-year-old Algerian carried a mix of his waste in a container of weed killer concealed in a laptop bag, a court found. Using the nozzle, which poked out of the bag, Daifallah was able to spray large areas, leaving a powerful stench and causing tens of thousands of pounds (dollars) worth of damage.

Related:

'Diversity' is turning Britain into East Germany - a nation of sneaks

Britons take ‘migrant’ jobs in farms and factories

Immigrants behind most cases of aggravated sexual assault in Oslo

The Oslo Police have over the past three years investigated 41 cases of aggravated sexual assault, which resulted in rape. All of them were carried out by non-western immigrants to Norway. The police now urge that more efforts be put into preventive measures among men with immigrant background. The police have investigated all reported cases of aggravated sexual assault over the past three years, and have gained a clear impression of the offenders: Most of the rapists have a Kurdish or African background. The cases of aggravated sexual assaults all have one thing in common, namely the use of gross violence.

Saturday, April 11, 2009

Israel and the two-state solution

Stephen M. Walt has some ideas on how the United States can put pressure on Israel to help create a Palestinian state.

There has been an almost 300% rise in calls for help and over 400 honor crimes registered over the last four years in Denmark

Increasing numbers of young people are seeking help to deal with so-called honor crimes according to new figures from the National Organization of Shelters for Battered Women and their Children (LOKK). Since 2005, LOKK has being offering advice to young ethnic minorities who have come into conflict with their families. Kristeligt Dagblad newspaper reports that the organization counselled 101 people in 2005 who knew someone, or who were themselves, trapped in such a situation. In 2008 that number had risen to 397. Lene Johannesson from LOKK said that they especially received many calls from young women subjected to honor related attacks. Many of the calls come from young immigrant women who have found a Danish boyfriend against their parents’ wishes. ‘But we also deal with those who just want to behave like other Danish kids - going out at night and making their own decisions about education and so on,’ explained Johannesson. Many of the girls who contact LOKK have already been verbally threatened by their parents. ‘There have been threats about locking them up or sending them back to their homeland. We also see threats of violence,’ said Johannesson. Since 2006, the National Police’s investigation unit has registered more than 400 honor crimes in Denmark, ranging from threats and violence, to forced marriages and being sent back to the home country for ‘re-educating’.

Women may be better at sniffing out biologically relevant information from underarm sweat

Researchers found it was difficult to mask underarm odor when a woman was doing the smelling, but quite easy to do so when it was a man. They speculate that a woman's highly attuned smell radar might help her select a mate.

Blacks killing for respect in Oakland

Whereas in most American cities murders and many other crimes have gone down or remained stable over the past decade, they have gone up in Oakland. Poverty cannot be the primary reason, says Jack Levin, a criminologist at Northeastern University in Boston. Oakland has much less poverty than cities such as Hartford, Baltimore or Memphis, which also have high crime rates. Nor is it racial tension, since the overwhelming majority of Oakland’s violent crime is black-on-black. In the late 1980s much of it could be blamed on the twin epidemics of crack cocaine and handguns. But today’s shootings, often among men who were “crack babies”, are more likely, says Mr Levin, to happen for “respect”. Respect killings defy reason. A wrong look, a casual gesture, can lead to a full-blown shoot-out. The murders tend to happen in the two or three areas where black former prisoners — by some estimates, about 7.5% of Oakland’s population of 400,000 — are to be found. Most of them go in and out of prison, getting more brutal as they go. Three-time offenders are killing four-time offenders because younger criminals are fighting for the turf of older ones, and for the respect of their peer group.

BMI, race and obesity

Blacks, whites, Asians and Hispanics differ in what is a healthy body-mass index.

The Spanish government is considering an asylum request from an albino African who claims he might be killed in a witchcraft ritual if sent home

The 18-year-old from Benin, known only as Moszy, arrived in Tenerife with 60 other African immigrants. Some African nations have reported a growing trade in albino body parts, which some witchdoctors believe can bring wealth and good fortune. The Spanish Commission for Refugee Aid described Moszy's fears as reasonable. The director of the commission, Juan Carlos Lorenzo, told reporters: "In Africa albinos are considered to be a bad omen or a factor of good luck. It is logical that he fears for his life because among different ethnic groups his body may be used in a sacrifice ritual."

Jewish ethnic activism and white America

A great column by Edmund Connelly.

HIV-positive man from Uganda killed with hatred

African immigrant uses deadly disease to attack Canadian women.

While 28% of white women gave birth out of wedlock in 2007, nearly 72% of black women and more than 51% of Latinas did

Nearly 40% of babies born in the United States in 2007 were delivered by unwed mothers, according to data released by the National Center for Health Statistics.

Monday, April 6, 2009

Obesity is most common in black, Hispanic and American Indian children

A striking new study says almost 1 in 5 American 4-year-olds is obese, and the rate is alarmingly higher among American Indian children, with nearly a third of them obese. Researchers were surprised to see differences by race at so early an age. Overall, more than half a million 4-year-olds are obese, the study suggests. Obesity is more common in Hispanic and black youngsters, too, but the disparity is most startling in American Indians, whose rate is almost double that of whites. Almost 13% of Asian children were obese, along with 16% of whites, almost 21% of blacks, 22% of Hispanics, and 31% of American Indians. There are also higher rates of diabetes in American Indians, and also Hispanics, which scientists believe may be due to genetic differences.

Saturday, April 4, 2009

Pakistani women kept as slaves by mother in law

Three young women who flew into Britain to join their first cousins in arranged marriages found themselves locked up for years by their mother in law and treated as slaves, a court has heard. Each of the trio arrived from Pakistan believing they would enjoy a new and prosperous life. Instead their mother-in-law, Naseebah Bibi, 63, is alleged to have kept them as virtual prisoners. She allegedly subjected them to a regime characterised by threats and beatings, with one of her alleged victims being forced to work day and night on an industrial sewing machine for 13 years. The women's suffering ended only when a three-year-old boy told staff at a nursery that Bibi had caused some bruising to his mother's hands, the court was told. Bibi is accused of falsely imprisoning Nagine, Tazeem and Nisbah Akhtar on varying dates between 1993 and 2007.

Related:

Will Shari’a Courts in the UK sabatoge the Forced Marriage Act?

Race and natural selection

In a worldwide survey of 50 populations, a team of geneticists has identified many fingerprints of natural selection in the human genome. These are sites on the genome where specific sequences of DNA show signs of having become more common in the population, presumably because they helped their owners adapt to new climates, diseases or other factors. The genetic regions where natural selection has acted turn out to differ in various populations, doubtless because each has been molded by different local forces on each continent.

Related:

Genetic Copy Number Variations Compared Between Races

All 520 pupils at a British school are of Asian descent with English as their second language

The children speak a range of languages as their mother tongue – mostly Urdu, Punjabi, Bangla and Pashto – and the majority are Muslim. Half of the 60 teachers and assistants also come from ethnic-minority backgrounds.

Black genes and colorectal cancer

Researchers have identified a possible genetic cause for increased risk for a more advanced form of colorectal cancer in blacks that leads to shorter survival, according to data published in Clinical Cancer Research, a journal of the American Association for Cancer Research.

The Irish have inherited more genes from the first settlers of Europe

Scientists can now use DNA to detect differences in closely related populations.

Related:

DNA analysis provides evidence of ancient invasion of Scotland from Ireland

Clues to ancient invasion in DNA

Just 29% of historically black colleges and universities males finish a bachelor's degree in 6 years

In fact, some historically black colleges and universities are clustered among the worst-performing colleges in the country. At 38 of them, fewer than one in four men who started in 2001 had completed a bachelor's degree by 2007, the data show. At Texas Southern, Voorhees, Edward Waters and Miles College, the figure was under 10%.