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UN: Most African Nations to Miss 2015 MDG Goals

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UN: Most African Nations to Miss 2015 MDG Goals.

Most African countries will not reach the Millennium Development Goals set for 2015 because of the gap between economic and human development. That is one of the conclusions in this year’s annual U.N. report on the Least Developed Countries, presented Thursday.

Junior Davis, U.N. economic affairs officer for Africa, said African countries have not been able to translate their economic growth into structural transformation.

“We think that is the case because these countries have not focused efficiently on building what we call their productive capacities,” Davis said. “These are the basic human and economic development capacities that are needed to promote sustainable economic development. And the MDG, as they were constructed, largely ignored the need to develop the productive capacities.”…

Obesity costs global economy an estimated €2tn a year

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Obesity costs global economy an estimated €2tn a year.

The global cost of obesity outweighs that of alcoholism, drug use or road accidents and closely rivals that of armed conflict and smoking, according to a new study.

The cost of obesity is estimated at $2 trillion – equivalent to 2.8 per cent of the world’s economic output, the study found. This makes it one of the top three global social burdens behind smoking and armed violence, war and terrorism..

The research, which was carried out by consultancy firm McKinsey, reveals that obesity is now responsible for about 5 per cent of all deaths a year worldwide.

More than 2.1 billion people – equivalent to nearly 30 per cent of the global population- are overweight or obese. That is almost two and a half times the number of adults and children who are undernourished.

A number of studies conducted in Ireland show that two out of three Irish adults, and one in four primary school children, are overweight or obese.

“Obesity is a major global economic problem caused by a multitude of factors. Today obesity is jostling with armed conflict and smoking in terms of having the greatest human-generated global economic impact,” the report said…

More than 2,000 men suffer domestic abuse, says Amen

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More than 2,000 men suffer domestic abuse, says Amen.

Almost 8,000 incidents of domestic abuse were reported from more than 2,000 men last year, the support service for male

sufferers of domestic violence Amen, has said.

According to Amen’s 2013 report, the number of domestic attacks on men is roughly the same as 2012.

But the charity said it is seeing a large increase in the number of men coming for face-to-face counselling.

The number of face-to-face meetings with men complaining of abuse has risen by about 64 per cent on 2011, says Amen service manager Niamh Farrell…

The Ethics of Infection – NYTimes.com

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The Ethics of Infection – NYTimes.com.

“PRIMUM NON NOCERE” or “First, do no harm” is supposed to be the guiding principle of health care workers. And within civil societies, at least, not harming others is considered every person’s moral, ethical and even legal responsibility.

The heated debate over whether it’s responsible for health care workers who treated Ebola patients to go grocery shopping or bowling or get on a cruise ship before the end of the disease’s 21-day incubation period raises a larger question: What is everyone’s duty to prevent transmission of infectious diseases?

Is it ethical to go to the gym when you have a cold, visit a nail salon when you have a foot fungus or board an airplane with a stomach bug? What about the morality of sending your kids to school when they have, say, a green runny nose or were not vaccinated? Are you a bad person if you don’t get a flu shot?

When it comes to “do no harm,” the problem is defining harm and the risk of inflicting it, as well as what constitutes reasonable measures to impose on someone to minimize that risk.

“Risk is a function of two things — probability that harm will occur and severity of that harm, should it transpire,” said Lawrence O. Gostin, a professor of law at Georgetown University who specializes in public health law and human rights.

And those two factors, he said, have a rough inverse relationship. That is, the more severe the potential harm, the less probability, or risk, we are willing to assume — much less allow someone else to assume on our behalf…

The Ultimate Fatal Attraction: 5 Reasons People Join ISIS-Carnegie Middle East Center

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The Ultimate Fatal Attraction: 5 Reasons People Join ISIS-Carnegie Middle East Center.

The Ultimate Fatal Attraction: 5 Reasons People Join ISIS-Carnegie Middle East Center

The appeal of the Islamic State to Arab and Muslim youth is hard to understand. Many assume religion or social media is the main draw for the increasing numbers who are uprooting their lives to join the militants in Iraq and Syria. But this is not the full story.

Five distinct trends—not including theology or technology—explain the fatal attraction to the Islamic State. And understanding these trends is vital for winning the war against extremist ideologies.

First, Arab education systems have failed. Instead of vital analytical skills or civic values, schools emphasized rote learning and the uncritical acceptance of authority. 

History curricula and religious education fostered an us-versus-them mentality along ethnic, ideological, and sectarian lines, making youth vulnerable to external influence. This helped transform the cultural landscape of Arab countries, facilitating the spread of militant ideologies and the early indoctrination of younger populations…

 

Top British Spy Warns of Terrorists’ Use of Social Media – NYTimes.com

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Top British Spy Warns of Terrorists’ Use of Social Media – NYTimes.com.

LONDON — One of Britain’s highest-ranking intelligence officials on Tuesday castigated the giant American companies that dominate the Internet for providing the “command-and-control networks of choice for terrorists and criminals” and challenged the companies to find a better balance between privacy and security.

The statements were made by Robert Hannigan, the newly appointed director of GCHQ, Britain’s electronic intelligence agency. They were among the most pointed in a campaign by intelligence services in Britain and the United States against pressure to rein in their digital surveillance after disclosures by the American former contractor Edward J. Snowden…

How to burn fat faster

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How to burn fat faster.

How to burn fat faster

Losing weight and toning up can seem like a battle, so anything to speed up the process will make things a whole lot easier.

Here are The Running Bug’s tips on how to burn fat faster, try them out this week and see if you notice a difference.

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