When the State Department released its annual report on human trafficking Wednesday, we got a chilling reminder that even in 2013, slave labor is still embedded in the global food system.
As many as 27 million men, women and children are estimated to be trafficking victims at any given time, according to the report. And some of those victims, the State Department says, are later forced to work in agriculture and food processing (though no one has a good idea how many).
In the 1500s, Italy is bursting with some of the most influential and vivid figures in history. Many — like Leonardo da Vinci, who balanced art and the sciences; Galileo Galilei, who turned his telescope to the heavens; and Niccolo Machiavelli, who calculated the ruthless politics of the day — are still remembered even now for their major contributions.
Author Sarah Dunant has drilled down into the Italian Renaissance for over a decade — reconstructing a time of artistic innovation, political corruption and war into captivating, and highly accurate, fiction.
For a little more than a month now, we've been reporting on the IRS's flagging of Tea Party and conservative groups for extra scrutiny. Through it all, some basic questions remain: Who ordered the targeting? And why?
We don't have any satisfying answers to those questions yet — and it seems neither do the congressional investigators. But along the way, as new revelations have trickled out, we've noticed some surprising and even puzzling facts about the situation that haven't gotten much attention.
Originally published on Thu June 20, 2013 12:07 pm
Face mask-clad Singaporeans enduring record-breaking smog got some more bad news from their government on Thursday: The pollution may last awhile.
The choking smog that blanketed the city-state earlier this week, generated by burning clear-cutting fires in Indonesia, has gone well beyond the "hazardous" level on the Pollutant Standards Index, hitting 371 on Wednesday before coming back down to about 250. The previous record was 226, reached in 1997.
Originally published on Thu June 20, 2013 11:24 am
It's a bit hyperbolic. And French-born, Beijing-based photo preservationist Thomas Sauvin is the first to say he's really not trying to rescue all the world's photos, let alone China's, let alone Beijing's. Even still, he's managed to save about half a million negatives from being recycled.
What happens to trashed negatives if Sauvin doesn't get to them first? In China, at least, they're collected, dropped in acid (along with old X-rays), and what remains — the silver nitrate — will fetch a decent price.
Originally published on Thu June 20, 2013 11:14 am
LeBron James is Superman to Michael Jordan's Lex Luthor.
That's going to sound blasphemous, but more than the San Antonio Spurs, whom he faces for all of the marbles in tonight's NBA finals, or any other team he might face in the future, James' biggest foil is actually Michael Jordan, The Greatest Basketball Player Ever.™