April 13, 2005


Brazilian President Promotes Closer Links to West Africa (Gabi Menezes, 12 April 2005, VOA News)

The president of Brazil is on a trip to West Africa, aimed at expanding trade links with developing countries.

On the second stage of his four-day tour of West African states, President da Silva, widely known as Lula, was in Nigeria to discuss closer trade links with President Olusegun Obasanjo.

Remi Oyo, the spokeswoman for the Nigerian president, said that, any talks about Nigerian trade include discussions about oil. Nigeria is one of the world's largest oil producers. Ms. Oyo said agricultural exports to Brazil were also subjects of interest.

In addition to trade, Ms. Oyo said that the Brazilian leader talked with Mr. Obasanjo about how Brazil can collaborate with African countries to help them produce anti-retroviral drugs for the treatment of HIV/AIDS.

"I do know that Nigeria and Brazil have been talking, not only about increasing their trade relations, but also ways in which we can collaborate to set up here an anti-retroviral drug producing factory, to cater for our own population, and perhaps our sub-region," she said.

He's happily turned into the anti-Chavez.

Creationism's assault on science (Toronto Star, 4/13/05)

As the religious right strengthens its hold on U.S. politics, the threat to teaching about evolution grows. The revival of creationism is a serious concern for the National Science Teachers Association. In a recent survey of 1,050 teachers, 30 per cent said they felt pressure to include creationism — sometimes disguised as "intelligent design" — in their lessons.

Further, in a disturbing sign that the assault on science is moving from schools to public education in a wider sense, some science centres and museums in southern states have refused to show big-screen Imax films that refer to evolution. They are boycotting titles such as Volcanoes of the Deep Sea, which suggests that life might have begun more than 3 billion years ago.

Until recently, scientific organizations had rather neglected the creationist threat. Fortunately, their attitudes are changing. The powerful American Association for the Advancement of Science has written to 410 public science and technology centres urging them to resist censorship, following the example of the Fort Worth Museum of Science and History, which reversed an earlier decision not to show Volcanoes of the Deep Sea.

Although scientists elsewhere tend to think of creationism as an American problem, Alan Leshner, AAAS's chief executive, is right to point out that the U.S. is not alone in the struggle. Success in North Carolina or Texas encourages creationists around the world.

For example, Brazil's fast-growing evangelical Protestant population is becoming more aggressive in its fight against evolution teaching.

Posted by Orrin Judd at April 13, 2005 12:11 PM

So the Scientific Left wants to censor classrooms and textbooks, by keeping out all evidence of intelligent design etc., and by keeping out all criticism of the Left's theology of evolution, in the name of "resisting censorship"? The Big Bang theory, and DNA, are probably next on the Left's list to be censored. Can't they just go off and chant in the woods among themselves?

Posted by: Steve at April 14, 2005 4:07 AM