Yup, they just keep on coming.

Looks like I’m going to can the planned trip to Hong Kong after all. I’ll try to get there next year instead – at least it should be easier to catch up with my Hong Kong buddy then.

Instead I’m going to meet another friend in CAMBODIA!!! Yerrrsssss!! After the debacle that was my life last year, it look like I’ll finally live out one of my dreams and watch the sun rise at Angkor Wat – at Christmas instead of New Years though.

At the end of last week it was all doom and gloom on the markets, but this morning they’re up in Australia after the government guaranteed all bank deposits for the next three years. We’ll see how long this lasts. Whatever happens, the lessons from history are hardly soothing…

For Japan, the outlook is not good at all. The yen has soared against most major currencies, meaning bad news for exporters, and therefore everyone who works for them. Already tight belts will tighten even more, spelling problems for businesses that have already cut back as much as they can. Look for the continued growth of part-time and casual work and more hardship.

Things are starting to get a bit heated in the former Yugoslavia.

The great Australian drought isn’t over by a long shot.

Dirty tricks are back with a vengeance with less than a month to go in the US election. Voters are being purged illegally in six battlefront states. No guesses as to which party stands to benefit the most…

McCain would do well to push his Wall Street buddies to get the market back on its feet in a hurry if this chart is anything to go by.

Sarah Palin Watch continues. This article looks at how Palin is mirroring (and even outdoing) Bush in her use of sports to mask her faults. That’s quite tame compared to how this one compares Palin’s politics to that of the Khmer Rouge. It’s actually compelling and scary reading.

As much as I don’t trust Obama, I’d take him and Biden over McCain and Palin any day of any week.

In Afghanistan, the amount of opium grown has surged in recent years, but global heroin supply (and price) has been constant. The question international investigators are asking is, what’s happened to all that excess heroin? The answer could be is that it’s being stored close to the fields in case it’s needed. Another possibility is that certain countries (Russia, Iran, Khazakstan, etc.) have understated the heroin problems that are in their countries.

In recent weeks in Australia there’s been an explosion of public hysteria over teenage sexuality, especially that of young girls. At the centre has been the photography of Bill Henson (you can Google him yourself, and the pix are freely available on the Net) and controversy following his motivations and methodology. With films such as Juno and Towelhead also exploring this topic, now should be a time for carefully considered and calm, realistic discussion of this topic. This article goes into the topic a little and makes some good points; in a world saturated by sexualised images of women, especially young women, and where women admit to strong sexual desires, there is a need for open and honest discussion of young sexuality. My thoughts that once people are comfortable with themselves, and can talk about their feelings in a way that is open and safe, then the chances of repression and dangerous secret acts become less. In a country where 97% of girls and 100% of boys under 15 have seen porn and 1/3 of 13 year-old girls admit to having a sexual experience, the time is most definitely now.

October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month, and having two close family members lose their lives due to the disease, I’m always interested and supportive of new research and treatments in this area of medicine. A timely piece of news is about a robot that can detect and destroy breast cancer cells. It kinda bring up images from horror movies – having a robot perform surgery – but if this works, then the precision this new technique could bring could help women worldwide.

It looks like they’re going to be tinkering with the teaching of Australian history with the new curriculum. I hope they heed the warning that those who do not learn from history are doomed to repeat it.

Mercury… wow!

Sydney as you’ve never seen it before. These videos (and this photographic technique) are very, very cool!