The Daily Populous

Tuesday December 28th, 2021 night edition

image for ‘Colossal waste’: Nobel laureates call for 2% cut to military spending worldwide

More than 50 Nobel laureates have signed an open letter calling for all countries to cut their military spending by 2% a year for the next five years, and put half the saved money in a UN fund to combat pandemics, the climate crisis, and extreme poverty.

“Individual governments are under pressure to increase military spending because others do so,” the signatories say in support of the newly launched Peace Dividend campaign.

“The feedback mechanism sustains a spiralling arms race – a colossal waste of resources that could be used far more wisely.”.

The high-profile group says the plan amounts to a “simple, concrete proposal for humankind”, although there is no realistic prospect that military spending cuts will be enacted by large or medium-sized governments, or that any sums saved would be handed over to the UN and its agencies.

Total military spending amounted to $1,981bn (£1,496bn) last year, an increase of 2.6% according to the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute.

The five biggest spenders were the US ($778bn), China ($252bn), India ($72.9bn), Russia ($61.7bn) and the UK ($59.2bn) – all of whom increased their budgets in 2020.

Such a fund, they claim, could amount to $1tn by 2030. »

The Pandemic Shows Why We Need Universal Health Care

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There are a number of reasons, but the primary one is that the United States does not have a free, universal health care system.

The pandemic has demonstrated that a privatized health care system cannot ensure the health of the population.

We have barely survived this pandemic, and without universal health care, we won’t survive the next one. »

Elephant Santas pass out face masks, hand gel in Thai school tradition

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AYUTTHAYA, Thailand Dec 24 (Reuters) - Elephants in Thailand wearing Santa hats and surgical masks passed out hand gel, face masks and balloons to students at a school's annual Christmas party, a COVID-era twist on a 15-year tradition in the Buddhist majority country.

Thailand is 98% Buddhist, but it celebrates Christmas as part of the year-end holiday season.

Coronavirus cases in Thailand peaked in August this year, with 2.2 million total infections so far and 21,501 deaths. »

Man Who Tried to Kill the Queen With a Crossbow Made Darth Vader Terror Video Before Breaking into Palace

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The man who broke into Windsor Castle on Christmas Day armed with a crossbow recorded a threatening Snapchat clip, channeling Darth Vader and describing himself as a “Sith.”.

In the video, Chail says, in a heavily distorted voice: “I’m an Indian Sikh, a Sith.

On the wall behind the man is a framed picture, which, the Sun says, is “of obscure Star Wars bad guy Darth Malgus.”. »