UXBRIDGE, Canada (IPS) - This December, 195 nations plus the European Union will meet in Lima for two weeks for the crucial UN Conference of the Parties on Climate Change, known as COP 20. The hope in Lima is to produce the first complete draft of a new global climate agreement.
However, this is like writing a book with 195 authors. After five years of negotiations, there is only an outline of the agreement and a couple of "chapters" in rough draft.
The deadline is looming: the new climate agreement to keep climate change to less than two degrees Celsius is to be signed in Paris in December 2015.
The United States has a higher level of human development than Canada. The latest United Nations Human Development Report compiles statistics on life expectancy, education and access to human resources in order to compose the Human Development Index (HDI). The U.S. ranked third in the world in terms of human development while Canada ranked eleventh. This is sad news for Canada because within the 13-year tenure of the previous Liberal government (1993-2006) Canada ranked number 1 in the world for seven consecutive years (1994-2000). Under the Conservative government, reigning from 2006 onwards, Canada has fallen out of the top 10.
If you were stranded on a deserted island -- without online access -- what book would most help you while away the hours? Some would opt for the latest novel by Haruki Murakami whose compelling, enigmatic stories would keep one endlessly entertained. Others might choose the Bible or Keith Richards' autobiography in order to gain spiritual insight. The question is an interesting one because it provides us with an engaging nugget of self-knowledge.
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One of the many carnivalesque aspects of consumer society is the popular fascination -- and fashion -- oriented around various types of monsters. As with previous groups that rebelled via a parodic inversion against the regulatory demands of official culture -- such as hippies in the 1960s, skinheads in the 1980s and the occasional cyborg in the 1990s -- today's zombie and vampire enthusiasts present themselves in opposition to mainstream, bourgeois style, costume and aesthetics.