Saturday, October 11, 2008

Stuff of Interest

--The San Francisco Chronicle reports:

An advocacy group is suing over an Oklahoma law that prohibits a woman from getting an abortion unless she first has an ultrasound and the doctor describes to her what the fetus looks like.

In the lawsuit filed Thursday in Oklahoma County District Court, the Center for Reproductive Rights says that the requirement intrudes on privacy, endangers health and assaults dignity.

The law, set to go into effect Nov. 1, would make Oklahoma the fourth state in the nation to require that an ultrasound be performed before a woman can have an abortion and that the ultrasound be made available to the patient for viewing, according to the Guttmacher Institute, a health research organization in Washington, D.C. The other states are Alabama, Louisiana and Mississippi.

--Alan De Niro has been posting "transcriptions" of the sinister Palinomicon at his Goblin Mercantile Exchange.

--Nation columnist John Nichols reports that Republican Senator Gordon Smith of Oregon has taken the desperate measure of trying to cling to Barack Obama's coattails in his television ads, even though Obama has been providing unambiguous support for Smith's opponent, Democrat Jeff Merkley.

--The New York Times reports that a senior World Bank official requesting anonymity commented that "There's no question the Washington consensus is dead," adding that at the World Bank, the push toward deregulation and unfettered free markets "died at the time of the $700 billion bailout."

--"Food insecurity" is on the rise in the US, reports the Food Research and Action Center in Washington DC, and "the study's findings show there is strong public opinion in favor of the need for a comprehensive debate among candidates for the White House and other public offices on the issue of hunger and food insecurity."

--Strange Horizons has posted my review of the anthology Paper Cities.

--Chris Gerrib has posted a review of Alanya to Alanya.

--The Fix has posted a review of Plugged In.

--Annalee Newitz's The Greatest Depressions (and Economic Recoveries) of Science Fiction offers a brief survey of sfnal depictions of economic crises at io9.

--Steven Shaviro muses on the role of financial crises in capitalism and concludes "Now more than ever is the time... to be unrealistic, demand the possible.”

No comments: