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Looking Up

You come to Korea from where I’m from and you can’t stop looking up. Always up. At the sky without so many rain clouds, at the trees forever in a constant pattern of change, and at the buildings which stretch above everything I’ve ever known. It takes a lot of concrete and steel to make a megalith as complete as the Korean urban space, and event then it never seems complete. There is always some mason tapping away at some finer piece chiselling another groove in the pursuit of perfection.

Dublin -v- Seoul

Dublin – 988 AD
Seoul – 1394 AD

Dublin – 114.99 km2
Seoul – 605.25 km2

Dublin – 525,380
Seoul – 10,464,051

Dublin – 4,398/km2
Seoul – 17,288.8/km2

Population of metropolitan area
Dublin – 1,801,040
Seoul – 23,616,000

Dublin – Dub, Dubliner
Seoul – Seoulite, 서울시민(Seoul simin)

Ethnicty of population
Dublin – 90.85% White (81.25% White Irish, 9.23% White Other, 0.37% Irish Traveller), 3.34% Asian/Asian Irish, 1.12% Black/Black Irish, 1.47% Bi-Racial/Other, 3.22% Not Stated
Seoul – 285,618 foreigners registered in city at end of 2011 (186,631 of these were citizens of the People’s Republic of China with Korean ethnicity)

Feeding the Future- 7 billion

An Illustrated History of Family Planning in Korea

In the aftermath of the Korean War, the young South Korean Republic faced an influx of over two million refugees from North Korea and a post-war baby boom with a fertility rate of 5 births per woman. The population was growing at a 3% rate each year and fear arised about the country's limited land resources. As a result, the Planned Parenthood Federation of Korea (PPFK) was created in 1961.

Red Links, 9-16-10

After the Storm (The Economist)East Asia is becoming a more mature and complicated place, demographically, politically, and economically. And, it’s not all bad. There are real gains to applaud. Now, though, cranking out the successes is no longer like manufacturing. It’s marginally costly, whether it involves a currency, building a city, or keeping a military alliance.

Reproducing a Better Humanity (Video)

As one half of a married couple, who has reconciled himself to the fact of his own genetic extinction, “Voluntary Human Extinction Movement (VHEMT)” is perhaps the most unfortunate name for a social movement I’ve ever come across.

OTOH, I like Mike Treder’s distinction between mimetic and sexual reproduction.

Slavish Korean Parents and Their Enslaved Children

Perhaps in some meaningless way, these South Korean parents are rebellious. They want a “western-style” education with no demand to challenge government authorities for all their money can buy.

“We will do everything humanly possible to create an environment where your children must speak English, even if they are not abroad,” Jang Tae-young, a Jeju official, recently told a group of Korean parents.

translation: we will continue Korean methods in a foreign language, and make you pay “top dollar” for it.

I’ve also told students, too, that it doesn’t matter what you study, as long as one has a plan. There’s no magic answer, and English competence will not solve anything. Besides, only a small percentage of people can learn a foreign language. For the majority, such flogging is a waste of time and money.

More Support for the Japanese-As-Koreans Theory

Razib Khan offers his conclusion about a new interpretation of southern Korean population genetics and phylogeography: not only do northern Koreans display some features of many neighboring countries, but Japanese samples in certain regions share a great deal of material with southern Koreans.

In the paper itself they’re testing a few historical hypotheses. So I’ll leave it to them for the interpretation:

More Math-Related Humility and Evolutionary Biology

When I think of the most recent helpful sources for understanding evolution, P.Z. Myers and this Carl Zimmer interview with Carl Bergstrom have made me feel inadequate at mathematics again.

Stay Clear of the White Folk

A Declaration of War

I guess I’ll have to find some peaceful, sleepy American Koreatown full of “studious” “kimchi-eaters”, to stay clear of those angry white people.

According to the Wall Street Journal, the Census reported that babies of color accounted for more than 48 percent of the total amount of children born between July of 2008 and 2009.

In Defense of Hunter-Gatherers

Honestly, since I read Raj Patel's Stuffed and Starved, I've struggled with how both pig out and not eat industrially produced pork. I know I've got a freezer full of antibiotic-pumped chicken, too. I do avoid cola, which I've never really liked that much. Fortunately, the Army basic training showed me [...]

Disproportionate Scrutiny Falls on Foreigners for H1N1

Hey! Hot For Words! Meet Sparkling Chaos. H1N1 certainly looms large in Brian's life. I did get an email from a good friend, the Reuters Bureau Chef for Seoul and he said that internationally, our H1N1 story is not making a splash yet, due to the Roh suicide and the nuclear test. [...]

Prosperity Spawns an Uber-Class

James Turnbull's focus on ROK's reliance on civil servants and former military brass to fill the back benches misses the hook in that Economist feature: no matter where they start out, the political class is becoming inbred and inward-looking. Aside from the golden mean - all professions in moderation - I'm less concerned with the [...]

In the End, We Are All Just Dumb

Sing me the milquetoast gospel! ...the best programs are always innovating, refining, challenging themselves to do better by the students they serve. And for just this reason, the most successful reformers do not fit into neat ideological categories. It's springtime for technocrats. Powered by ScribeFire. alternate frame of change©2009 Left Flank. All Rights Reserved..

Scared to Death of Human Flu

OinkSip Originally uploaded by JaycastOn A/H1N1, I fully share the better skeptical instincts of the cynical who lampoon the perceived fear-mongering tactics of the media. Sensational headlines operate like an "11" on a ten-point scale. Only now we're at "20" with no signs that inflation will abate. The blogosphere and the comments sections are performing [...]

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