Archive for February, 2016

That journey: from cradle to grave

2016-02-28

The Guardian provides yet another sobering read.

Here the author, Helen Pearson, examines the life journey of various cohorts of Britons,  The Life Project: what makes some people happy, healthy and successful – and others not? Just one paragraph should invite closer reading,

In March 1946, scientists recorded the birth of almost every British baby born in one, cold week. They have been following thousands of them ever since, in what has become the longest running major study of human development in the world. These people – who turn 70 over the next two weeks − are some of the best studied people on the planet. And the analysis of them was so successful that researchers repeated the exercise, starting to follow thousands of babies born in 1958, 1970, the early 1990s and at the turn of the millennium. Altogether, more than 70,000 people across five generations have been enrolled in these “birth cohort” studies. No other country in the world is tracking generations of people in quite this way: the studies have become the envy of scientists around the world, a jewel in the crown of British science, and yet, beyond the circle of dedicated researchers who run them, remarkably few people know that they even exist.

[bold added for emphasis]

Such studies, longitudinal or tracer, are clearly invaluable to society. Not only to researchers, but to committed policymakers. Regrettably, some countries with the wherewithal to conduct a similar data and analytical exercise opt for blather rather than data collection and analysis for policy making.

This article should provoke not only further observation and discussion, but also some introspection – how satisfactory has been the journey and what lifestyle adjustments are called for? That saying about the ‘unexamined life…’

 

 

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Caracas, 27Feb1989

2016-02-27

TeleSur takes us on an unpleasant but necessary journey back to the horrific events that began on 27Feb1989 in Caracas, Venezuela. And the overarching question should remain, “Why?”

A video captures in graphic detail some of the unfolding tragedy, wanton death and destruction, Remembering the Caracazo

One analyst’s perspective, Venezuela’s Caracazo: State Repression and Neoliberal Misrule

From the perspective of the survivors, Caracazo Victims: In Their Own Words

Or better expressed, ¿Por qué el Caracazo?

Then comes the obvious question, “Since that time, how far have the dispossessed, the socially excluded, reached in their quest for respect, social justice and economic opportunity in so rich country as Venezuela?”

Clearly not jaded is that aphorism of Santayana’s on the consequences of failing to to remember and understand history.