Tuesday, May 06, 2003

Countries we live: Statistics

Here are some statistics about Health in Afghanistan, Iran, Iraq and the United states. I think all of them are obvious. Some people are lucky that they were born in a rich country, though they did not choose it. So what is the meaning of nationalism, chauvinism, and racism? How is it possible that we are proud of something that we did not make it? Race, nation,.. Are they really objective matters or like many other things are subject? How can human beings kill each other for such a nonsense things? I cannot understand!!
Anyway, You can find the statistics of your country in WHO website .

Total population: 22,473,000
GDP per capita (Intl $): 820
Life expectancy at birth m/f (years): 41.1/43.7
Healthy life expectancy at birth m/f (years): 31.1/35.7
Child mortality m/f (per 1000): 252/249
Adult mortality m/f (per 1000): 527/418
Total health expenditure per capita (Intl $): 9
Total health expenditure as % of GDP: 1.0
Total population: 71,368,000
GDP per capita (Intl $): 6,120
Life expectancy at birth m/f (years): 66.4/71.1
Healthy life expectancy at birth m/f (years): 55.5/57.9
Child mortality m/f (per 1000): 45/39
Adult mortality m/f (per 1000): 209/137
Total health expenditure per capita (Intl $): 336
Total health expenditure as % of GDP: 5.5
Total population: 23,583,000
GDP per capita (Intl $): 2,809
Life expectancy at birth m/f (years): 58.7/62.9
Healthy life expectancy at birth m/f (years): 47.7/53.3
Child mortality m/f (per 1000): 122/111
Adult mortality m/f (per 1000): 258/180
Total health expenditure per capita (Intl $): 573
Total health expenditure as % of GDP: 3.7
The United States
Total population: 285,925,000
GDP per capita (Intl $): 34,637
Life expectancy at birth m/f (years): 74.3/79.5
Healthy life expectancy at birth m/f (years): 66.4/68.8
Child mortality m/f (per 1000): 9/7
Adult mortality m/f (per 1000): 144/83
Total health expenditure per capita (Intl $): 4,499
Total health expenditure as % of GDP: 13.0

(posted by Iman)

Monday, May 05, 2003

Hatred is the vice of narrow souls; they feed it with all their littlenesses, and make it the pretexts of base tyrannies.(Honore' De Balzac)
(posted by Iman)

I am concerned
These days, papers,TV programs in the world talk about SARS. Some Iranian bloggers are concerned about this contagious disease. However, I think Media exaggerate this matter. We usually forget how many people die every day because of malnutrition, AIDS, Tuberculosis, Malaria and other infectious diseases in the third world. I am really concerned about young people in Iran who do not know how they should prevent sexual transmitted diseases (STD) like AIDS. I am concerned about Iranian girls who do not know any thing about birth control, Iranian women who do not receive any education about breast cancer because of this silly reason that government cannot talk about this part of body in television and other public media. I am concerned…

(posted by Iman)

Saturday, May 03, 2003

Where are you from?

I would like to know the meaning of this phrase. It means where you live Or it means where you were couple of minutes ago Or it is a question about your origin. When I was in Iran, when I was asked where I am from, it was difficult to answer. Since I have lived in different parts of Iran. I do not know what immigrants say if they have lived in a country for a long time. It would be more interesting to know their children's answer if they cannot speak in their parent's mother tongue. I know a guy who immigrated to Norway 17 years ago. Two years ago, he wanted to travel to Australia. He went to their embassy in Oslo and applied for visa. An Australian officer asked him " where are you from?" He said, " I am Norwegian" and showed his passport. The officer said, " I mean where you are originally from" He said "From Iran". Officer said " I am sorry we can not issue visa for Iranians". He said" But I have Norwegian nationality" the officer replied" No way!" Then he applied through their website and use his Norwegian ID number. They sent his visa within two days!
Anyway, let me know what it means. " Where are from?"

(posted by Iman)

Shia in Iran and Iraq, religion and state

I have read an article in Newsweek. I have found some worth noticing facts regarding history, religion and political groups in Iraq. I quote some important parts of it here. As an Iranian who used to live in the South of Iran, I know some things about Arabic culture. Aauthors quote what Abdullah, an Iraqi who had been living in Iran for 23 years, says about Iranians.
The Iranians are racist. They don't respect Arabs.
Unfortunately, I have to say YES! They are. You may find Iranians somehow racist. Iranians usually don't respect Arabs or even Afghanis. It may have some reasons. So people believe that it is because of Arabs' attack on Iran. (Maybe yes or not. I do not care. Racism is racism and regardless of its reason it is not acceptable). But this is not all the story. Arabs hate Iranians too even more and it has some tribal reasons. I remember after revolution in Iran, because of domestic ethic unrest in Khozestan in the southwest of Iran, there were so many Arab casualties in Khoramshahr hospital (Iranian army suppressed the separatists' uprising). When my parents went there to donate their blood, a group of Arabs did not allow them to enter the hospital and told them we do not need your unclean blood since you are Persian. Though generalizability is not possible since we do not have any survey in this regard or it may be said it was because of critical situation, as a personal experience I think it is right and may give you a general picture about Iranians and Iraqis' attitude toward each other.
The last thing he wants for his five children is an Iranian-style Islamic government. "There are many problems in Iranian society," he says. "The people don't have the freedom to express themselves.
This is a challenging thought. Islamic government is not like a liberal, democratic or republic government. It has own values and laws. How is it possible that we have an Islamic (or any other religion) government wit h Islamic judiciary, economy and laws and still have freedom to express ourselves. It is not enough that you have freedom to talk about your idea. The problem is that you cannot practice what you think or believe. Why? In Islamic government the important rule is that the system should be keep by any means. So you cannot have any free election and other minorities do not have the equal rights. This is a paradoxical matter. I think when ordinary people talk about Islamic government they are talking about their wishes and dreams. However, when politicians talk about such a system they are not honest.
No one knows where the tectonic shifts will end. Before they're done, however, Iran's almighty Shiite clerics are more than likely to find that their religious authority has slipped away to Iraq, where it originated more than 12 centuries ago,Even without a drastic overhaul of strategic alliances, the impending moral, religious and political upheaval is phenomenal. Its explanation begins, as so many Middle Eastern stories do, many centuries ago, in a violent succession battle that erupted following the Prophet Muhammad's death in 632. One faction believed that the Prophet's son-in-law, Ali, should inherit his religious authority; the descendants of those Muslims are today's Shiites. The other faction said the mantle should pass to four caliphs who were chosen by Muhammad's disciples; their descendants became the Sunnis. The bitterness that separates the two groups began when Ali was murdered as he prayed in the great mosque at Al Kufah, beside the Euphrates. His body was entombed in Najaf, which would become the holiest Shiite city. Ali's son, Hussein, was next to die, surrounded and vastly out-numbered by his enemies at Karbala and abandoned by all but a handful of loyal followers. The annual festival of Arbaeen, observed last week in Karbala for the first time in many years, commemorates the 40th day after Hussein's death with an outpouring of guilt and self-flagellation. The holy city of Karbala rose from the bloody battlefield.
I agree with authors that
Many people wrongly imagine that Iran is the center of Shiism. The mistake is only encouraged by chauvinistic Iranians, who tend to view Tehran as the intellectual and cultural capital of the Middle East. But Iran became a bastion of Shiism only as a refuge from the merciless persecution of Iraq's Shiite majority under the Sunni-dominated regime of Saddam Hussein. No shrine in Iran can equal the sanctity of Najaf and Karbala, and to this day Najaf remains the capital of Shiite learning the bulwark of scholarship that defines and interprets Islamic law.
an important problem is that Shia clerics mostly are conservative and do not like to involve any political affairs. Clerics like Ayatollah sistani in Najaf prefer to be a spiritual leader rather than politician. The only thing that they want is that government respect Islamic rules even if they do not have Islamic jurisdiction and law. They are suspicious about western style democratic governments. Maybe it has different meaning for them like sexual freedom, selling alcohol in shops and the like. History shows that they have had better relationship with dictator kings in compare to elected government like Mohammad Mossadegh's nationalist and democratic government.

(posted by Iman)

Friday, May 02, 2003

New links!

I have added new links to the link section. Because of my travel to Canada I could not add them before. Hooman's Scribbles by Hooman in Canada, Smile at me by David in the US, Take one by Reza in Iran and Me and Sassan by Sassan in Canada. I also updated some old addresses.

(posted by Iman)

Thursday, May 01, 2003

Billy Joel
We Didn't Start the Fire

Harry Truman, Doris Day, Red China, Johnnie Ray
South Pacific, Walter Winchell, Joe DiMaggio

Joe McCarthy, Richard Nixon, Studebaker, television
North Korea, South Korea, Marilyn Monroe

Rosenbergs, H-bomb, Sugar Ray, Panmunjom
Brando, "The King and I" and "The Catcher in the Rye"

Eisenhower, vaccine, England's got a new queen
Marciano, Liberace, Santayana goodbye

We didn't start the fire
It was always burning
Since the world's been turning
We didn't start the fire
No we didn't light it
But we tried to fight it

Joseph Stalin, Malenkov, Nasser aand Prokofiev
Rockefeller, Campanella, Communist Bloc

Roy hn, Juan Peron, Toscanini, dacron
Dien Bien Phu falls, "Rock Around the Clock"

Einstein, James Dean, Brooklyn's got a winning team
Davy Crockett, Peter Pan, Elvis Presley, Disneyland

Bardot, Budapest, Alabama, Krushchev
Princess Grace, "Peyton Place", trouble in the Suez

We didn't start the fire
It was always burning
Since the world's been turning
We didn't start the fire
No we didn't light it
But we tried to fight it

Little Rock, Pasternak, Mickey Mantle, Kerouac
Sputnik, Chou En-Lai, "Bridge on the River Kwai"

Lebanon, Charlse de Gaulle, California baseball
Starkweather, homicide, children of thalidomide

Buddy Holly, "Ben Hur", space monkey, Mafia
Hula hoops, Castro, Edsel is a no-go

U-2, Syngman Rhee, payola and Kennedy
Chubby Checker, "Psycho", Belgians in the Congo

We didn't start the fire
It was always burning
Since the world's been turning
We didn't start the fire
No we didn't light it
But we tried to fight it

Hemingway, Eichmann, "Stranger in a Strange Land"
Dylan, Berlin, Bay of Pigs invasion

"Lawrence of Arabia", British Beatlemania
Ole Miss, John Glenn, Liston beats Patterson

Pope Paul, Malcolm X, British politician sex
JFK, blown away, what else do I have to say

We didn't start the fire
It was always burning
Since the world's been turning
We didn't start the fire
No we didn't light it
But we tried to fight it

Birth control, Ho Chi Minh, Richard Nixon back again
Moonshot, Woodsto, Watergate, punk rock
Begin, Reagan, Palestine, terror on the airline
Ayatollah's in Iran, Russians in Afghanistan

"Wheel of Fortune", Sally Ride, heavy metal, suicide
Foreign debts, homeless vets, AIDS, crack, Bernie Goetz
Hypodermics on the shores, China's under martial law
Rock and roller cola wars, I can't take it anymore

We didn't start the fire
It was always burning
Since the world's been turning
We didn't start the fire
But when we are gone
Will it still burn on, and on, and on, and on...

We didn't start the fire
It was always burning
Since the world's been turning
We didn't start the fire....

in these links you can find a link for each historical even mentioned in this song with a brief description of that , 1, 2, 3
(posted by Farid)

The most beautiful and profound emotion we can experience is the sensation
of the mystical. It is the sower of all true science. He to whom this emotion is a
stranger, who can no longer wonder and stand rapt in awe, is good as dead.

(Albert Einstein)
(posted by Farid)

Happy or Honourable

"It is not necessary that whilst I live
I live happily;
but it is necessary that so long as I live
I should live honourably."

Quote from Emmanuel Kant

(posted by Iman)