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  1. On refugees

    Twenty years ago, on the morning of Monday December 7th, the streets of Caracas and almost all major cities in Venezuela were celebrating with joy. The savior we had so long been waiting for had been elected president the day before, under the electoral system that did not have a second round and did not take into account that the majority of the people had voted against him. Those of us that did so looked out the streets and knew, with no little uncertainty, that this would end badly.
    At ...

    Updated 01-12-2019 at 06:38 AM by ponchi101

  2. On Germany and Russia, one century apart

    I wrote this piece in 2014 and posted it here. Somehow, it has disappeared. It has not aged poorly.

    As we approach the centenary of the beginning of WWI, it perhaps may be a good time to check if the lessons of the past have been learned by many of its protagonists. Specially those that lost.
    To recap. On November 11, 1918, after 4 years of conflict, the Central Powers of Germany and the Austro-Hungarian empire conceded defeat to the Allies, ending a war of 9 ...
  3. Equal Treatment

    During the men’s semifinals at Wimbledon, an incident took place on this forum when one member expressed his disagreement with the idea of equal pay. While perhaps he could have been more elegant on his selection of how to phrase his idea that women do not deserve the same financial rewards as men, his opinion is not only personal and valid, it is one shared by many (although not openly in this forum).
    However, this piece is not expected to settle such a complex issue. What brings me forth ...
  4. The 10th Annual Munchie Awards; or 2017 in review

    It's Oscar Sunday and I'm bored at work, so that means it's time for me to undercut the Oscars yet again in the 10th Annual (!) Munchie Awards, where I look back on the year in film. Looking back on it, it was a very good year, with several films coming out that will probably be in consideration for my personal all-time favorites.

    As per usual, let's get the business end of the show over right at the beginning! Unfortunately, I failed to see enough documentaries to give them their own ...
    Tags: film, movies, munchies
  5. The loneliest drive. II

    The man I reached was un-doubtfully my brother. In mind. His body now betraying him was growing hollow, just what remained of a life. I reached his bed and sat next to him. I took his hand, not a handshake but a wrestling grip, and warned him I would ask him the stupidest question in his life.
    “How do you feel?”
    He smiled and said “I feel like dying”. And then he added “and that is not the stupidest thing you have asked me”.
    His brain, plagued by little tumors, was still able ...

    Updated 02-11-2018 at 05:16 PM by ponchi101

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