Inside Style by Annmarie O’Connor – as featured in The Dubliner – December 16th
I decided to write Santa a letter this year. Given the current state of the economy, my wardrobe needed a bit of goodwill and I wasn’t averse to tapping up the North Pole for the favour.
Granted, the last time I contacted Mr. Claus for some swag, I was a mere eight years old; so I thought it time to get reacquainted.
“Dear Santa. It’s Annmarie here. Remember me? I was that little girl who asked you for a pair of Gloria Vanderbilt jeans back in the 80s. Well, guess what? I’m back and we’ve [...]
After two years of pushing and shoving by the Japanese government, Apple has finally relented, agreeing to replace those first generation iPod nano music players sold in Japan at risk of overheating. The player exchange goes beyond the battery replacement program already in effect for consumers concerned enough to complain directly to Apple. According to Japan’s Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry, of all the plastic black and white iPod nano players sold between September 2005 and December 2006, it confirmed 27 overheating incidents that occurred during recharging, including 6 [...]
Nick Clegg, leader of the UK Liberal Democrats party, has pledged to repeal the odious Digital Economy Act, which was rushed through without substantial debate before Parliament adjourned for the election. Time to start asking the other party leaders and MPs if they’ll support the repeal of the DEAct and a revisiting of the issues from the bottom up:
Q: Will you reconsider the Digital Economy Bill considering the manner it was pushed through, without proper scrutiny, the lack of MPs in attendance at the Bill’s hearing and also taking into account that some ministers have demonstrated [...]
My latest Guardian column, “Digital Economy Act: This means war,” explains how the latest round of dirty tricks from the entertainment industry — perverting British law, proposing an American police state, building an oppressive global treaty behind closed doors — changes the game. We’re no longer merely arguing about the future of control over culture: now it’s about the fundamentals of a just and free society:
In the US, the MPAA and RIAA (American equivalents of the MPA and the BPI) just submitted comments to the American Intellectual Property Czar, Victoria [...]
It is looking increasingly likely that the Prime Minster, Gordon Brown is going to take a trip to Buckingham Palace today to ask the Queen to dissolve parliament in time for a general election next month on 6 May.
This is on the same day that the controversial Digital Economy Bill gets a second reading in parliament and gets debated by MPs in the House of Commons. (Well, that’s what many hope!).
Open Rights campaign
The Open Rights Group has advertised in today’s Guardian and Times newspapers demanding that MPs give the bill a “proper” debate – claiming:
The Liberal Democrat Party is actively pursuing a change to the Digital Economy Bill which would see sites which host copyrighted material illegally blocked in the UK.
This amendment could well have severe implications for those who use the internet in Britain and may target well-known video-sharing sites such as YouTube.
The two peers who are looking to add a “Preventing access to specified online locations” clause are the brilliantly titled Lord Razzall and not-so brilliantly named Lord Clement-Jones.
The crux of the clause is as follows:
“The High Court (in [...]
The Government’s Digital Economy Bill is coming under scrutiny from the Joint Committee on Human Rights, which has said that it needs to see more details in the law before it can be passed.
One significant issue the Committee has raised is whether the warning and disconnection system proposed in the Bill is a proportional response to the infringement targeted.
Not only that, but without more detail the Committee says it cannot make a judgement as to whether the disconnections will interfere with rights to privacy and freedom of expression.
With disconnection referred to as ‘technical [...]
Dr. Ishrat Husain, a former World Bank senior official and an ex governor of the State Bank of Pakistan, wrote an article captioned “India, Pakistan: a comparison” at the end of the first five decades of two nations’ existence as independent states. To my knowledge, Dr. Hussain has not done an update of his article since it was first published. Although about three years too late, this post is my attempt to present a comparison of the two South Asian nations after sixty years of independence.
Here is the opening paragraph from Dr. Husain’s article from the late 1990s, which [...]
This December 31, 2009, is not just the end of the year; it brings a momentous decade of achievements in Pakistan to a chaotic and bloody end. After a relatively peaceful but economically stagnant decade of the 1990s, the year 1999 brought a bloodless coup led by General Pervez Musharraf, ushering in an era of accelerated economic growth that led to more than doubling of the national GDP, and dramatic expansion in Pakistan’s urban middle class. The decade also cast a huge shadow of the US “war on terror” on Pakistan, eventually turning the nation into a frontline state in the [...]
Pakistanis’ great hospitality to strangers and strong addiction to tea has given birth to many proverbs. The best known of these is the one about the “three cups of tea” which goes like this: On the first cup, you’re a stranger, and on the second, a guest. By the third cup, you’re family.
Pakistan is the world’s third-largest importer of tea with nearly 175 million kg of annual consumption, costing an estimated $500 million, and increasing at about 4% a year. It imports tea from 21 countries, with the lion’s share of black tea imports coming from Kenya, Bangladesh [...]