Sunday, October 18, 2015

Reflection#2: A scandal in the motor industry: Dirty

It's really hard for Volkswagen to apologize for an emission-rigging. I'm a Kia car owner, but the scandal might seem to affect all car owners including me. I've heard some Volkswagen owners entered a joint lawsuit against the company. The company must guarantees even the price that they will get for their used car. Several years ago, Volkswagen Golf was a big hit in Korea, and I have an interest to that foreign car due to good price (compared to Korean cars) and better quaility. But now, it seemed like falsification. Clean diesel sounds like a con. I hope Volkswagen follows the procedure for apologizing the sellers all over the globe first and that is a very commonsensible solution to help treat this issue. I hope Vokswagen will be highly reputed again.

Saturday, October 17, 2015

Reflection#3: Beauty, to love the way I look

We all know that real beauty comes from within. But, my actions don't reflect this. I wonder if I am brave enough to live with this inner definition. I've heard about my appearance from beloved and others. They've asked me why I don't buy make-up products, care for my looking and even lose weight. I'm definitely okay when people let me alone. It sounds like torture. I've never heard that I'm slimmed and tall. They sometimes judge me as lazy one becuase I don't look like who they watch on the TV and act like whom they say "Beautiful" to. I'm really okay with how I look. Most of women have their own beauty, wisdom, compassion and genius. Sometime I have a small amount meal feeling not good. But no more diet for skinny body. I try to feel perfect in every way.

take a stand: what we will learn with should be carefully decided.


  The highly politicized issue in Korea is a history textbook. President Park's government decides to ask korean secondary schools to teach national-issued history textbook. Korean ruling party(saenuri) told  that "korean students learn Juche ideology from N. Korea." Or Korean present history textbook was condemned as a North Korean textbook. More and more historians and scholars would not boycott to contribute to national-issued textbook. Some say that using a single textbook will make the students easier to prepare for college entrance tests. In my view, easy tests cannot be a big deal for our education. I also agree that we can get a variety of historical points of views after what we learn. Many types of publishers can have their own opinions and that can cause the quality of our historical facts to be spiritual nourishment. We can't teach proper views of history when we stick to national-controlled one single historical books.


 History has no political affiliation Oct 17,2015 The controversial proposal to revive state authority in the writing of history textbooks has, not surprisingly, developed into a political showdown between the conservative ruling and liberal opposition parties. The Saenuri Party held an emergency conference and approved support for the government’s plan to regain control over history textbooks. Its members also accused left-leaning textbooks of spreading pro-North Korean ideology. The main opposition New Politics Alliance for Democracy (NPAD), meanwhile, has been staging street rallies, lambasting the government move as a “coup on history.” It threatened to boycott next year’s budget bill as well as the labor reform deal. It is also considering filing a lawsuit against the government. This is a worrying development and the results could be catastrophic. State affairs will come to an abrupt halt if the main opposition party chooses to boycott legislative activities, further polarizing society. We should be discussing how to teach history to young impressionable children in a proper manner so they can build a healthy and fair perspective on their country and the world. History must be free of ideological disputes and should not be used to divide a nation. The opposition is worried that textbooks could be used as a way to glorify conservative and pro-American views, as they were under the Park Chung Hee regime. But no government can write history textbooks in its favor in a modern democratic society. The idea of state authority over history books has been revived because the current textbooks provided by for-profit publishers have all been too strict on South Korea’s trajectory - and overly tolerant of North Korea’s direction. The Saneuri should also stop attaching a “pro-North Korea” stigma to any and all liberal views. Instead, it should attempt to rationalize to the public why state interference would be better in ensuring objectivity and balance. The heart of the debate should concern the production of better textbooks. We should also discuss how we can develop history education to provide our children with a more open-minded perspective. Politicians must not use this controversy for political gain. The aim should be to turn out textbooks in a balanced fashion - regardless of which party has a ruling majority. Civilian oversight must be strengthened so that the concerns of the opposition are not realized.

JoongAng Ilbo, Oct. 16, Page 34

Saturday, September 19, 2015

Middle East faces water shortages for the next 25 years(guardian)

Middle East faces water shortages for the next 25 years, study says Rising population and dwindling water supplies will affect millions of people and exacerbate conflict in the region John Vidal Thursday 27 August 2015 15.51 BST Last modified on Thursday 27 August 2015 18.22 BST Water supplies across the Middle East will deteriorate over 25 years, threatening economic growth and national security and forcing more people to move to already overcrowded cities, a new analysis suggests. As the region, which is home to over 350 million people, begins to recover from a series of deadly heatwaves which have seen temperatures rise to record levels for weeks at a time, the World Resources Institute (WRI) claims water shortages were a key factor in the 2011 Syria civil war. “Drought and water shortages in Syria likely contributed to the unrest that stoked the country’s 2011 civil war. Dwindling water resources and chronic mismanagement forced 1.5 million people, primarily farmers and herders, to lose their livelihoods and leave their land, move to urban areas, and magnify Syria’s general destabilisation,” says the report. New WRI rankings place 14 of the world’s 33 most water-stressed countries in the Middle East and north Africa region (Mena), including Bahrain, Kuwait, Qatar, the United Arab Emirates, Palestine, Israel, Saudi Arabia, Oman, Iran and Lebanon. Companies, farms and residents in these countries are all highly vulnerable to the slightest change in supplies, says the WRI. “The world’s demand for water is likely to surge in the next few decades. Rapidly growing populations will drive increased consumption by people, farms and companies. More people will move to cities, further straining supplies. An emerging middle class could clamour for more water-intensive food production and electricity generation,” say the authors. “But it’s not clear where all that water will come from. Climate change is expected to make some areas drier and others wetter. As precipitation extremes increase in some regions, affected communities face greater threats from droughts and floods,” they say. More on this topicEuropean ‘extreme weather belt’ linked to worst drought since 2003 Areas of China, India, and the US, including Ningxia province, and the south-west US, could see water stress increase by 40 to 70% by 2040 while Chile, Estonia, Namibia and Botswana all face “especially significant” increase in stress, say the WRI authors. Advertisement “Water supplies are limited, and risk from floods and droughts make Botswana and Namibia particularly vulnerable in southern Africa where projected temperature increases are likely to exceed the global average, along with overall drying and increased rainfall variability.” The Middle East is already prone to water conflict and is likely to remain so, says the report. “Water is a significant dimension of the decades-old conflict between Palestine and Israel. Saudi Arabia’s government said its people will depend entirely on grain imports by 2016, a change from decades of growing all they need, due to fear of water-resource depletion. The US National Intelligence Council wrote that water problems will put key north African and Middle East countries at greater risk of instability and state failure,” says the report. Middle East water supplies depend heavily on underground aquifers, but these are drying out at alarming rates. The International Institute for Sustainable Development has estimated that the Jordan river may shrink by 80% by 2100 and that ground water supplies will deteriorate further as demand increases. Nonrenewable aquifers are the major source of water in Saudi Arabia. Satellite images from the Gravity Recovery and Climate Experiment show that the Tigris-Euphrates basin is losing water faster than any other place in the world, except northern India, with the loss of 117m acre-feet of stored freshwater between 2003-2009. Pollution in the Tigris river caused by the discharge of drainage water from agricultural areas and sewage discharge near Baghdad is a major constraint to freshwater availability in Iraq,” says a recent Brookings Institute report. Advertisement In the Sana’a basin in Yemen, the groundwater table is falling nearly six metres per year and government has debated moving the capital city. The report coincides with the northern hemisphere experiencing some of its most extreme heat in decades, adding to water evaporation, affecting crops, increasing demand and drying up supplies. In Egypt, where demand for water is growing fast as population rises, the country has less water per person each year. According to government statistics the country’s annual water supply dropped to an average of 660 cubic metres a person in 2013, down from over 2,500 cubic metres in 1947. Water shortages are already common across the region with supplies restricted to only a few hours a day, but this year many smaller cities have run out of water completely. Israel, Syria , Turkey, Abu Dhabi and many other Mena governments have had to warn people to take extra precautions in the extreme heat that has engulfed cities. Earlier this year hundreds of people in India and Pakistan had died of heat stroke. “In the past, Algeria usually experienced siroccos – hot blasts of wind from the Sahara – rather than heatwaves. Now we have them at any time of the year with varying intensities. Algeria has experienced over 40 days of heatwave this year,” said Mahi Tabet-Aoul, Algerian atmospheric scientist. One reason why water is so scarce is because farming wastes so much. In addition, many rich people across the region have dug their own wells to tap into aquifers, leading to over-pumping and pollution of groundwater in cities like Damascus. Analysts urge the ending of water subsidies for large farms, the raising of energy prices to discourage over-pumping and the use of “smart” irrigation technologies to reduce water loss on farms.

Sunday, September 6, 2015

Germany and Austria made a hard dicision to accept refugees. the climate in Germany and austria looks like taking a turn for the better, I guess. Accepting refugees in Korea doesn't sound familiar for me now. I hope we should think about the human rights and why those European nations decided like that.