Stories from Quick Reads and France
— Jason Morrell (@CNNJason) July 25, 2014
The first footage of the plane crash are now available thanks to a Burkinabe soldier present on the site of the wreck near Gossi, in Northern Mali. There are no survivors among the 118 people on board, including more than 50 French nationals. Algerian website Algérie Focus reports in French that:
Cette vidéo montre des débris éparpillés et broyés. La zone sablonneuse a été noircie par le crash. Sur cette vidéo, il est pratiquement impossible de repérer les pièces maîtresses de l’avion au milieu des débris.
The video shows scattered and crushed debris. The sand at the site was blackened by the crash. In the video, it is virtually impossible to identify the key components of the aircraft amid the debris.
On June 22 at the World Cup 2014 in Brazil, Algeria defeated South Korea 4-2 to keep its chance of qualifying to the knock-out round alive. Scenes of joy were numerous in Algeria [fr] but also in France where a dynamic Algerian community resides.
The joy was tempered by rumors that a church in Lyon, France was burned down during the celebration. The rumors turned out to be a complete lie spread by extreme right groups based on erroneous photos. Adrien Sénécat explains the details of his fact-checking on the story [fr] :
Peu après le coup de sifflet final dimanche, des tweets ont indiqué qu'une église aurait brûlé dans le quartier de la Duchère, à Lyon. Message notamment relayé par le Bloc Identitaire et des sites proches de l'extrême-droite. Sauf que l'église en question n'a pas brûlé, comme l'ont signalé plusieurs internautes sur les réseaux sociaux. Une église a en revanche bien été incendiée à la Duchère… mais en 2006 (et sans aucun rapport avec un match de l'Algérie).
Shortly after the final whistle on Sunday, some tweets suggested that a church had burned down in the area of Duchère in Lyon, France. These tweets were relayed by Bloc Identitaire and other similar extreme-right group websites. The thing is, the church was still intact, as reported by several twitter users.A Church in Duchère was lit on fire … but in 2006 (and it had no relation whatsoever with an Algerian football).
The inability of the French economy to rebound from the Euro zone crisis, the loss of corporate champions like Alstom and Arcelor and the forceful rise of the far right party (Front National) at the latest European elections [fr] are seen by many observers as tell-tale signs of the country’s relative decline. Yet Nicolas Véron at the economic Think Tank Bruegel argues that while France may have many issues to resolve, “an extinction of corporate champions is not one of them” :
The bid from GE, a leading US-headquartered conglomerate, over the power division of Alstom, a maker of turbines and trains, has prompted much soul-searching in France. [..] The description of mass corporate exodus fits a narrative of national decay. France’s exports are slumping. Except that on the specific issue of corporate champions, the story is not backed by the facts. Compared with the rest of the world and of Europe, France is not losing ground as headquarters location of major companies – if anything, the opposite is true [..] Strikingly, in less than two decades France has gained considerable ground in comparison with the two traditionally headquarters-rich EU countries, the UK and Netherlands, and even with Switzerland..
The French blog Rue89 analyzes the results [fr] of the Pew Center Survey on attitudes toward immigrants and minority groups in the European Union. Rue89 highlights that Roma population are the most ostracized minority group, especially in Italy and France :
It also highlights that negative opinions about Roma, Muslims and Jews are “consistently more common among people on the ideological right.” It is to be noted that it is forbidden for a french public institution to collect population data based on ethnicity [fr] or race.
The newspaper Le Progrès based in Lyon, France published an infographic [fr]entitled “”Délinquance : à chacun sa spécialité – principales nationalités impliquées” (Crimes: To each his own- the main nationalities implicated [for each type of crimes]) (see image in the twitter update below):
Dans son édition du jour, Le Progrès ose publier un comparatif de la délinquance dans le Rhône, par nationalité. pic.twitter.com/Op08FO6P78
— Romain Charbonnier (@rcharbonnier) April 22, 2014
In its daily publication, newspaper Le Progrès dared to publish a comparison of crime rates in the Rhône by nationality
Thibeau Perezat notes that the newspaper did not mention the sources of the data. Global Voices contributor Julie Owono comments that the newspaper failed to distinguish that “Africans” or “Roma” are not nationalities.
Mahjong, originated from China is considered a national game. The fact that China's national mahjony team lost the the fifth Open Mahjong Championship in France and finished in 37th place out of 51 teams came as a shock to the country. Worse, the individual title was claimed by a Japanese competitor. Nanfang.com translated an article from New Beijing Daily on the reasons behind China's defeat.
You'll want to watch France games because if they're on, they'll be lovely to watch, and if they're off it's downright hilarious. The way to get the most out of a combustible team is to follow them closely enough to enjoy all the details but keep emotionally far away enough so that the explosion doesn't singe you too badly.
MacAree also mentions that the French team trolled Usain Bolt after they beat Jamaica in a warm-up match. Here is a photo on twitter of the aforementioned trolling from French player Paul Pogba's twitter feed:
— Paul Pogba (@paulpogba) June 8, 2014
One of the main causes of blindness in sub saharan countries are cataracts. A group of french physicians has developed a surgical kit called ”Phacokit” to treat at low-cost individuals suffering from cataract and help them recover their eyesight [fr]:
Pour vaincre la cataracte, principale cause de cécité, notamment dans les pays pauvres, des médecins français ont mis au point un kit chirurgical qui permet d’opérer en 10 min, pour seulement 25 euros. Bill Gates s'est associé à cette découverte.
To recover from cataract, the leading cause of blindness in many sub Saharan countries, French doctors have developed a surgical kit that allows surgical operations to be performed in about 10 minutes, for only 25 euros. Bill Gates has provided support for this invention.
Here is a video that explains how the surgical kit works:
The OuiShare Fest 2014 will gather thousands of activists for a conference on collaborative economy from May 5 -7 in Paris, France. The objective of the festival is to exchange on a common vision of an economy relying on horizontal networks and communities. Here is a video presenting the festival:
French economist and Associate Chair at the Paris School of Economics, Thomas Piketty recently published a book called “Capital in the Twenty-First Century” that has generated quite a buzz among fellow economists and political leaders. Piketty's central thesis is that inequality is not an accident, but one of the consequences of the excess of capitalism. Piketty also opines that inequality could threaten the democratic process as recently seen in Greece. Critics of his thesis on inequality also abound.