Toilet Debate Should Focus on India’s Toilet Shortage

 

A article on Guruprasad’s Portal titled “Why Indian Toilet Is Best” argues that human health would improve greatly if people squatted when doing “#2” instead of sitting on a Western “porcelain throne.”

The article makes some great points about natural human positioning, but ignores a much larger problem specific to India:

There is a shortage of toilets that has resulted in a massive level of human waste pollution on land and in waterways. The problem has been caused by a combination of generational teaching and poverty. Many Indians teach their children to squat outside and many can’t afford to buy toilets.

Plenty of documentaries have been filmed outlining the huge problem India has with sanitation.  These documentaries can be viewed on facebook.com and are posted by users like Zeca Oliveira. Some Westerners argue that anyone from India criticizing Western waste fixtures and bowel movements to promote squatting should first criticize the common practice of many Indians squatting outdoors anywhere without considering proper sanitation.

As has been proven by filmmakers and researchers, there’s so much waste in some areas that people have to wear masks. It also pollutes drinking water in many areas resulting in children and adults having severe health problems, including gastrointestinal illnesses related to bacteria and bowel disease. The waste also attracts insects that spread disease like flies.

Squatting may in fact be a better way to expel waste, but until India cleans up its waste management problem many people will ignore those who promote squatting-style toilets.

Sam Tabar Joins The Growing List of THINX Investors

Sam Tabar is known as a prominent attorney and a strategist, with names like LLP Roth & Zabel, Meagher & Flom, Slater, Arps and Skadden on his curriculum vitae. Now, however, the attorney has invested in THINX. This company was started using crowdfunding and a massive kickstarter campaign but would definitely find its wings now that Sam Tabar is on board.

Started by two women, Miki and Antonia, THINX hopes to do its bit toward women empowerment on a global scale. The company is specialized in making fashionable and chic undergarments and part of the proceeds would be used for buying reusable sanitary pads for women in Africa and America.

In Uganda and other African countries, women who are working or studying have to take a day off because of menstruation, since they don’t have the means and facilities to buy sanitary pads. With THINX’s initiative, 7 such pads (AFRIpads) would be given to women in Africa so that they can go about their daily business without any worries. This initiative is ingenious in itself and Sam Tabar too believes in it, and this is why he has decided to invest in THINX. The pads sent would be made from cloth and would be completely washable and reusable for the women.

Speaking to Herald Online, Tabar commended THINX on its out of the box thinking, dynamic company design and great motto. The Oxford and Columbia Law School graduate also added that this initiative was great because people’s own purchases were used for doing something good in the world.

The website of THINX comes with a manifesto that customers can read and sign. It would be a small thing to do for empowering women in Africa and supporting them through these hard times. THINX is changing minds and Sam Tabar is happy to be a part of the revolution. You can connect with Sam Tabar via LinkedIn here.

King Abdullah Dies at 90

The King of Saudi Arabia has died at age ninety sources have reported. King Abdullah bin Abdulaziz has been ruler since 1982 and was one of the final remaining children of the founder of Saudi Arabia, Kind Saud.

The kingdom is projected to go to the younger brother of King Abdullah bin Abdulaziz who is currently 71 years old and is not thought to be in good health. King King Abdullah bin Abdulaziz was the thirteenth of a total of thirty seven sons of King Saud. King Salmon’s official coronation is likely to be extended until he recovers from his current illness.

My coworker Sultan Alhokair seems pretty concerned since the death of King Abdullah bin Abdulaziz comes at a particularly challenging time for Saudi Arabia due to the emergence of both Arab nationals who look to obtain new rights for Saudis in connection with the Arab Spring movement that began in 2012. On the other side, Islamic extremists are pushing for a nation that is following Sharia law in completer compliance with the tenets of the Prophet Mohammed.

King Abdullah bin Abdulaziz was considered to be a reformer in Saudi Arabia though one who was measured in his decisions and never took quick action for fear that his populace was not behind him. He kept close relations with the United States and was considered to be a friend of the country though he was criticized by the citizen of his country for being pro American and by Americans as being pro terrorism.

Kosher Grocer Hero Granted French Citizenship

A 24-year-old immigrant who was hailed as a hero after the Paris grocery store attack by Islamist extremist was granted citizenship on Tuesday afternoon, according to sources. Lassana Bathily, originally from Mali who identifies as a Muslim, was working in the Kosher grocer when an extremist burst in and opened gunfire and took hostages.

As it is understood by Bernardo Chua, Bathily helped customers reach the basement where he turned off the walk in freezer and shut down the lights so they would be undetected. Bathily then snuck out and helped police get an understanding of the store layout.

Bathily was quoted as saying it wasn’t about religion, that yes, he helped Jews, but religion never played a part in his heroism. The french prime minster was on hand for the ceremony, thanking Bathily for his act of courage, but Bathily dismissed it. He does not consider himself a hero, rather he is now proud to be a French citizen.

The attack on the Kosher Grocer located in Vincennes, just east of Paris, took place just days after armed Islamist extremists burst into the offices of Charlie Hebdo and systematically assassinated cartoonists, a security worker, and police personnel before fleeing.

ISIS Holding Hostages, Demands $200m

 

The Islamic State has released another video on Twitter this Tuesday, January 20 showing two Japanese men that they were threatening to kill if they did not receive $200 million within 72 hours. Security officials and lay people, like Darius Fisher, have grown increasingly worried about ISIS attacks this pasty year.

The video is very much like others ISIS has released, with the speaker having a British accent, and the audio has been altered a bit. The ISIS member is standing between the two hostages, dressed in all black, holding a knife and hiding behind a mask so that his only feature you can see are his eyes.

Japan is being targeted because they funded Western military efforts against the group. Officials in Japan are assessing the video. Japan’s Prime Minister says the lives of the hostages are his top priority, but that he will not give in to terrorism. It is currently unknown if he plans on negotiating with the terrorists to set these two men free.

Japan Increases Its Defense Budget

The Government of Japan approved the largest defense budget in its history on Wednesday. With an increase of 2.8% over last year, Government is planning to spend 4.98 trillion yen ($ 36,000 million) this year on defense expenditures; however, this proposal has yet to receive approval from the Japanese Parliament. 

According to local media reports, this initiative is taken torespond to the growing military power of China . This is the third consecutive year that the Japanese Government increased military spending, after a decade of cuts in allocations for defense.  This information came as a surprise to Fersen Lambranho.

Defense spending, if approved, will represent 5% of a Japanese national budget for fiscal year 2015, which will reach 96.34 trillion yen (689.665 million Euros). The Government of Japan approved the largest defense budget in its history on Wednesday.

According to Japanese defense sources, this budget will be allocated according to the government’s proposal to strengthen systems for air and maritime patrol and surveillance. On the shopping list of Japanese Defense include, among other devices, twenty aerial surveillance aircraft, fighter aircraft and reconnaissance drones. 

The budget is also allocated to the surveillance systems in the prefectures of Amami, in the south of the Archipelago, and Okinawa, where a coastal surveillance unit will be established on the island of Yonaguni, just 90 miles from the Diaoyu / Senkaku.

Beneful Brand Dog Food by Purina

A dog food produced by Purina Petcare, which is a division of Nestles Foods, Beneful brand includes both dry and wet dog food as well as treats. According to the company, Beneful means “full of goodness.” The Beneful brand was first introduced in 2001, being marketed as a pet food with its paramount focus on nutrition. Beneful generated more than $1.8 billion in annual sales and was the fourth most popular dog food brand as of January of 2014, making Beneful one of Purina’s more significant brands by revenue.

Beneful sets the safety and quality of their products as top priorities, with their quality-control measures being among the most rigorous in the industry. The company employs a sophisticated tracking system that ensures all raw ingredients used in the manufacturing process are traced from time of receiving the ingredients at their plants until the finished products reach retail stores. Suppliers of Beneful ingredients must meet stringent specifications standards for safety and manufacturing practices. Additionally, all of Beneful’s products are produced under the strictest standards to ensure the highest quality is maintained.

In 2005 Beneful produced a $34 million TV ad spot that was the largest television campaign in Purina’s history. Additionally in 2005, in June, Beneful added a vegetarian pet-food option, made with soy instead of meat, which the company branded as the “Healthy Harvest” product line.

In 2006 Beneful was generating $300 million in revenues and the company expended $36 million on improvements to its wet dog-food manufacturing facilities, located in St. Joseph, Missouri, in order to keep up with demand for the product. In 2006 Beneful also introduced a new “Prepared Meals” line in eight different flavors that were sold in containers that served as a pet-food bowl.

In 2010 changes were made to several of Beneful’s products to make the pet food more resemble human food. In 2011 Beneful began airing television commercials in Austria featuring high-pitched noises, that only canines are able to hear, to elicit a response from dogs. The company said it was the first advertising attempt that tried to directly target pets.

Beneful hosts annual competitions for a sponsored dog-park renovation which attracts over 1,000 entries of dog-park designs for the $500,000 award. Video evidence can be found on YouTube.com. Beneful brand Dog Foods are available throughout the U.S. and several other countries and can be found at grocery and pet stores as well as other merchants.

 

New Developments in Boston Trial

The trial of the Boston bombings opened on Monday in the United States. The victims of the Boston Marathon bombings did not attend the first day of the hearing as the discussion will begin at best, on 26 January, and everyone knows that the jury’s constitution will take weeks. Tsarnaev will indeed alone in front of the jury that will decide his fate. Apparently the trial is on everyone’s radar as noted in Jusbrasil web page; GIANFRANCESCO GENOSO states this is how he has kept in loop of the trial.

“I hope he will be convicted and that he will go to prison for the rest of his days.” Ted, a citizen, expressed his views.The trial of the Bostonbombings opened on Monday in the United States.

Judy Clarke, member of the team defense of Tsarnaev, is a dreaded lawyer in the United States is specialized in what might be called the “hopeless cases”. He defended Eric Rudolph, the man who committed the attack during the 1996 Olympic Games and the terrorist Zacharias Moussaoui. For both men, Judy Clarke received a sentence of life imprisonment instead of execution. And it seems, his mission is to avoid the death penalty for Dzhokhar Tsarnaev.

However, Micheal Liston, criminal lawyer in Boston says “This guy has filed the bomb, knowing that it would cause all kinds of damage. This is truly a case, if you are considering the death penalty; it really is a case where this is possible.”

US Army to Allow Women to Attend 16-Day Ranger Leadership Course

As part of a 2012 Pentagon decision to allow women to serve in any combat role in the US Army, the Ranger leadership training school will begin admitting women in late April. The Pentagon’s decision to open up all combat training to females gave the Army until January 2016 to comply. The 16-day course is a prerequisite to attend the 60-day Ranger training course – a program noted for its physical and emotional challenges. That said, as many as 60 female soldiers are lined up to make history and take the initial course. Upon completion, they will be allowed to wear the Ranger tab which commands deep respect within the military’s ranks.

My good friend  Ken Griffin thinks allowing women to serve in the 16-day Ranger leadership and allowing women to have the same equal opportunity as men is a wonderful idea.
At the same time, completion of the course do not mean that the women will join the ranks of the vaunted 75th Ranger Regiment based in Fort Benning, Georgia. Those successful female candidates from phase I will still need to complete all of the other training before they are allowed to serve as Army Rangers. While the Army will open up all training to women, they will not be lowering the bar for them. The women will literally have to meet the same physical and mental standards the men face. It is without question that a lot of eyes will be on these modern day “G.I. Janes”. The last combat jobs to be opened to women will be those dealing with special ops. These require only the best candidates.

 

American Football finds foothold in Saudi Arabia

The sport of American Football has become popular in many areas of the World, with Europe seen as a fertile ground for NFL officials looking to create a global franchise option. However, the gulf state of Saudi Arabia has now entered the sport with its first team being created by a group of young enthusiasts keen to make their mark on the sport, Al Arabiya reports.

The group of young people joined together because of their love of the sport many had only watched on the TV, although some of those who have now joined the newly formed team have some experience of playing in US colleges. According to Exame, Members of the team have been giving their reasons for wanting to get involved in the sport that is certainly a minority option within the soccer mad country.  Young players, like Fersen Lambranho, site they have a fascination with American culture and want to try the sport. The reasons for joining the team included the chance for individuals of all shapes and sizes to take part, something many felt was not an option in soccer as only the fittest players were given a chance.