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Monday, 23 March 2009

SHAMEFUL GREECE

http://www.adespoto.gr

Ελλάδα: Διεθνώς ρεζίλι...
Ποια άραγε είναι η στάση των υπουργείων Εξωτερικών και Αγροτικής Ανάπτυξης;

Aπό το http://www.adespoto.gr
..
H εταιρεία Inside/out προσφέρει μοναδικές ευκαιρίες ''ουμανοτουριστικών'' ταξιδιών με φιλοζωικούς σκοπούς στην Ελλάδα για να αντιμετωπιστεί η κρίση και στην περιθαλψη των ζώων!
Η ''ουμανοτουριστική" ταξιδιωτική εταιρεία ετοιμάζει ένα ταξίδι περιπέτειας - βοήθειας στα Ιωάννινα για τον Ιούνιο του 2009!
Οι συμμετέχοντες θα βοηθούν,καλυτερεύοντας τις ζωές των αμέτρητων σκύλων & γατών στην Ελλάδα,που παλεύουν να επιζήσουν κάτω από τραγικές και απάνθρωπες συνθήκες και έπειτα θα εξερευνήσουν την χώρα,σε ένα μοναδικό ταξίδι περιπέτειας.
Οι ξένοι πώς καταφέρνουν και εντοπίζουν τα προβλήματα ενώ εμείς αδιαφορούμε;;;
Τα καινοτόμα αυτά ουμανοτουριστικά ταξίδια συνδυάζουν το ουμανιστικό έργο με καθοδηγούμενη περιπέτεια,για να αντιμετωπίσουν τις σοκαριστικές, απάνθρωπες καταστάσεις για τα ζώα στην Ελλάδα!
Σ αυτήν την άγνωστη κρίση, τα σκυλιά και οι γάτες παλεύουν να επιζήσουν σ'ένα περιβάλλον ανεπιθύμητων υπερπληθυσμών, κακοποίησης, κακομεταχείρισης, βιαιότητας, εγκαταλείψεων, δηλητηριασμών,έλλειψης τροφής και απάθειας σε όλη την Ελλάδα, αναφέρει χαρακτηριστικά η εταιρεία! Συνεχίζοντας:
Ο σκοπός...
αυτού του ταξιδιού είναι να βοηθηθεί ένα μικρό ποσοστό εθελοντών ζωόφιλων στην Ελλάδα ώστε να συνεισφέρεται ενημέρωση, φροντίδα και προγράμματα τροφής αλλά και να κερδηθεί μια βαθύτερη εικόνα στην κάθε τοπική περιοχή!
Είναι ένα πραγματικά αξιόλογο πρόγραμμα, αν και μας ρεζιλεύουν για άλλη μια φορά σαν χώρα, αφού αποδεικνύεται το πόσο ανίκανοι είμαστε να ασχοληθούμε και να καταγράψουμε τα προβλήματα του τόπου μας! Τα Ιωάννινα λοιπόν-όπου θυμίζουμε τα 3 τελευταία περιστατικά ΔΗΛΗΤΗΡΙΑΣΜΩΝ με φόλα, αδέσποτων κουταβιών που. .''ενοχλούσαν''- επιλέχθηκαν ως ο προορισμός γιατί πιστεύεται ότι είναι μέρος αληθινά Ελληνικό και το επισκέπτονται πολύ λίγοι τουρίστες από το εξωτερικό. Θεωρείται επίσης μέρος μαζικών δηλητηριασμών των σκύλων & γατών της περιοχής,μια εκ των οποιων μάλιστα,αναφέρει η εταιρεία,προκάλεσε και μια μικρή διαμαρτυρία απο τους ντόπιους. (Ioannina was selected as the destination because it is part of an area which is truly Greek and visited by very few tourists from outside the country. It is also the site of a number of mass poisonings of the area's dog and cat population, one of which recently triggered a small protest from area locals.) ''Αυτό αντιπροσωπεύει μια αξιοσημείωτη αποχώρηση από...προηγούμενες συμπεριφορές των Ελλήνων και υποδεικνύει ότι αυτή η περιοχή είναι έτοιμη για αλλαγή συνείδησης ,που προηγουμένως ήταν αδύνατη'',λέει ενθουσιασμένη η Ζωή Κατσούλος. ''Είναι ο ιδανικός τόπος για το επιμορφωτικό μας έργο.΄΄
Το εντυπωσιακό άρθρο συνεχίζει λέγοντας ότι η συμπεριφορά των Ελλήνων απέναντι στα ζώα υπήρξε επί μακράν ''απαθής'' και ''φοβερά βίαιη''. Ένα από τα πιο αρνητικά θέματα είναι η συστηματική δηλητηρίαση των αδέσποτων ζώων, η οποία μπορεί ορισμένες φορές να οδηγεί και σε θανάτους ζώων που είναι οικόσιτα, επίσης. Η στείρωση είναι σημαντικά υποβαθισμένη και συχνά απορριπτέα και είναι εντυπωσιακή η έλλειψη ενημέρωσης κα υποστήριξης για την ανθρώπινη μεταχείριση και την φροντίδα.Το ανθρωπιστικό μέρος αυτού του ταξιδιού σχεδιάζεται να αντιμετωπίσει αυτά τα προβλήματα.
Άλλα ταξίδια της εταιρείας περιλαμβάνουν την Αφρική (15-29/8/09),με πρόγραμμα δενδροφύτευσης για βιοκαύσιμα μαζί με την φυλή των Μασάι και αναρρίχηση στο Κιλιμάντζαρο,σαφάρι καθώς και την Γκουατεμάλα (Νοέμβριος 2009).
''Αυτό το ταξίδι θα δώσει την ευκαιρία να δουν την Ελληνική κουλτούρα με έναν πιο αυθεντικό,άμεσο τρόπο'', λέει η κ.Κατσούλος.''Ελπίζουμε επίσης ότι θα παρέχει την αναγκαία ευαισθητοποίηση για τα προβλήματα της περίθαλψης των ζώων που υπάρχουν στην Ελλάδα.''
Μπράβο Ελλαδάρα με τις πρωτιές σου ,θα προσθέταμε.. Για όσους δεν μπορούν να συμμετάσχουν στο ταξίδι αλλά θέλουν να βοηθήσουν,υπάρχουν πολλές ευκαιρίες: δωρεές,βοήθεια στην οργάνωση,δωρεές πραγμάτων ή σύνταξη επιστολών διαμαρτυρία προς την Ελληνική κυβέρνηση!!!

Sunday, 22 March 2009

Happiest countries in the world

NEF (New Economy foundation) (http://www.neweconomics.org) an innovative think-tank established in 1986 has produced recently a new index measuring human well being. The HPI or the Happy Planet Index. Below you will find some extract from the HPI site explaining what the index is and how is calculated. The research findings are phenomenal and all conclude to two major conclusions:
a) All countries can do better
b) We have been focusing on the wrong end of the stick

The Happy Planet Index is an innovative new measure that shows the ecological efficiency with which human well-being is delivered.

It is the first ever index to combine environmental impact with human well-being to measure the environmental efficiency with which country by country, people live long and happy lives.

By addressing the relative success or failure of countries in supporting good lives for their citizens, whilst respecting the environmental resource limits upon which our lives depend, the HPI has much to teach us. Analysing its results could help us to move towards a world where we can all live good lives without costing the earth

How it is calculated
The HPI reflects the average years of happy life produced by a given society, nation or group of nations, per unit of planetary resources consumed. Put another way, it represents the efficiency with which countries convert the earth’s finite resources into well-being experienced by their citizens.

The Global HPI incorporates three separate indicators: ecological footprint, life-satisfaction and life expectancy.

Conceptually, it is straight forward and intuitive:

HPI = Life satisfaction x Life expectancy x ß

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Ecological Footprint + α

(variables a & b are explained in detail in the HPI report)

On a scale of 0 to 100 for the HPI, we have set a reasonable target for nations to aspire to of 83.5. This is based on attainable levels of life expectancy and well-being and a reasonably sized ecological footprint.

At this point in time, the highest HPI is only 68.2, scored by the Pacific archipelago of Vanuatu. The lowest, and perhaps less surprising than some other results, is Zimbabwe’s at 16.6. No country achieves an overall high score and no country does well on all three indicators. Vanuatu, for example, has only a moderate level of life expectancy at 69 years.

This conclusion is less surprising in the light of our argument that governments have been concentrating on the wrong indicators for too long. If you have the wrong map, you are unlikely to reach your destination.

You can get the map here: http://www.happyplanetindex.org/map.htm - the map is interactive and you can check where your country falls.
The 20 top countries in HPI are:

Rank Country Life Sat Life Exp EF HPI
Reasonable ideal 8.2 82.0 1.5 83.5

1 Vanuatu 7.4 68.6 1.1 68.2
2 Colombia 7.2 72.4 1.3 67.2
3 Costa Rica 7.5 78.2 2.1 66.0
4 Dominica 7.3 75.6 1.8 64.6
5 Panama 7.2 74.8 1.8 63.5
6 Cuba 6.3 77.3 1.4 61.9
7 Honduras 7.2 67.8 1.4 61.8
8 Guatemala 7.0 67.3 1.2 61.7
9 El Salvador 6.6 70.9 1.2 61.7
10 Saint Vincent and the Grenadines 7.2 71.1 1.7 61.4
11 Saint Lucia 7.0 72.4 1.6 61.3
12 Vietnam 6.1 70.5 0.8 61.2
13 Bhutan 7.6 62.9 1.3 61.1
14 Samoa (Western) 6.9 70.2 1.4 61.0
15 Sri Lanka 6.1 74.0 1.1 60.3
16 Antigua and Barbuda 7.4 73.9 2.3 59.2
17 Philippines 6.4 70.4 1.2 59.2
18 Nicaragua 6.3 69.7 1.1 59.1
19 Kyrgyzstan 6.6 66.8 1.1 59.0
20 Solomon Islands 6.9 62.3 1.0 58.9

Although Vanuatu tops the happiness index, it is ranked 207th out of 233 economies when measured against Gross Domestic Product (GDP).

Nef is calling for the adoption of a "global manifesto for a happier planet" that will list ways nations can live within their environmental limits and increase people's quality of life. The recommendations include:

Eradicating extreme poverty and hunger
Recognising the contribution of individuals and unpaid work
Ensuring economic policies stay within environmental limits

The HPI NEF report warns if annual global consumption levels matched the UK's, it would take 3.1 Earths to meet the demand.

After NEF's work was published, Adrian White, an analytic social psychologist at the University of Leicester School of Psychology, analysed the HPI data published by NEF, UNESCO, the CIA, the WHO, the Veenhoven Database, the Latinbarometer, the Afrobarometer, and the UNHDR, to create a global projection of subjective well-being: the first world map of happiness.



According to his work then, the 20 most happy countries in the world are:
1. Denmark
2. Switzerland
3. Austria
4. Iceland
5. The Bahamas
6. Finland
7. Sweden
8. Bhutan
9. Brunei
10. Canada
11. Ireland
12. Luxembourg
13. Costa Rica
14. Malta
15. The Netherlands
16. Antigua and Barbuda
17. Malaysia
18. New Zealand
19. Norway
20. The Seychelles



NB: you can find out more at www.newconomics.org and www.happyplanetindex.org
you can find the actual map here: http://www.happyplanetindex.org/map.htm
To download the HPI report : http://www.neweconomics.org/gen/uploads/dl44k145g5scuy453044gqbu11072006194758.pdf
To read more about Mr White's work you can go here:
http://www.le.ac.uk/users/aw57/world/sample.html

Happy pets

Guess who is happy that the garden looks and feels like the jungle...




Guess who is happy that we let the dogs out:

Two lovers



If you want to see how one of the most interesting topics of our times is not given justice, actually is destroyed in a movie, you can check out Two Lovers.
The story of a clinically depressed person who is seeking to get hold of life through begging for the love of an equally pathetic individual - emotionally unavailable (she is also clinged to an emotionally unavailable married guy) and his adventures
Gwyneth Paltrow and Isabella Rosellini were very good and kept to themselves the only thing that can get a positive review in this movie.
The story, the script, the direction, the acting from Phoenix - all it was pathetic. BTW, someone should have told Joaquin that he is not playing a drug addict, but a clinically depressed person. There is a big difference. I guess he must have been too drugged to notice.
Definitely the worst movie that I saw in years
Please, do not go and see it - don't even rent it on DVD

Stray cats



I believe that the fattest stray cats in the world are the ones lucky to live in my neighborhood. Unfortunately they do not allow me to catch them and provide proper medical care so their life span unfortunately is not higher than three years on average, typical average of a stray animal

However, I must say that they have the fattest bellies that I have ever seen in a stray animal. Not to mention that they all wait for me at night when I come home from work. They wait at the entrance of the building howling impatiently for food and giving me the sad angry look for being late.

In the picture you can see Grizoulis sleeping on his bed at my terrace. He is about 13 months old, and I 've known him since he was a few days old. When he was younger he would let me touch him but not any more. He does play with Zizou and Klelia
I have seen him teach his offsprings to cross the road and beware of cars. His wife is a black/yellow/grey cat and they have two cats - both male I think but I am not sure.
His wife is pregnant again so pretty soon the Grey familly will grow.

Saturday, 21 March 2009

Spring is almost here


In Greece we are almost out of seasons. There is usually one main season, summer and then there is a bit chilly and a bit of cold weather. The winter lasts approximately 2 months and it is mild really, and then we are blessed with about one month of spring before the summer starts. It has always been my favorite period but it never lasts long - not in Athens anyways
There is one infallible symptom that spring is on its way and that is the blossoming of the almond tree. I noticed this year most other flowers have started to blossom as well


The pictures are from the jungle that used to be my garden and needs some grooming - will get it done next weekend hopefully
Till then enjoy some spring essence


Tuesday, 10 March 2009

Country house for sale











My family is selling a lovely country house 19klm north of Nemea (100klm from Athens), the land of xynomavro vine variety.
In the ancient times, a Lion was terrorising the city but Hercules killed it. In fact it was the first of his twelve labors http://www.perseus.tufts.edu/Herakles/lion.html.

The house is a lovely villa on 650m altitude, with a marvellous view of the valley. The main house and the guest house together make up a surface more than 150 sq meters with a marvellous garden around it.
The main house has two bedrooms, one with ensuite bathroom, large kitchen, dining and living room. The guesthouse is a fully autonomous guesthouse with its own kitchen and bathroom with two single beds-
Other facilities include satellite TV, BBQ outdoor terrace, 2-car garage with roof, airconditioning, fireplace, autonomous heating, and in general everything that is required for a very relaxed stay.
The highlight is a huge oak tree that in the summer provides refreshing shade for after sun afternoons. The sea is half an hour away and there are many different choices at this distance (Nafplio, Xylokastro, Kiato)
The village Bozika where the house is located is only 20 min car drive from other very picturesque villages in the area and lake Stylida where in the summer cultural festivals take place.
In fact the location of the village in Korinthia is considered one of the prettiest landscapes of continental Greece.
Selling price is extremely low regarding property value. Fantastic value for money. If you - or someone you know - are interested please contact me (zeta.tsatsani@gmail.com) and I will let you know more details

Monday, 9 March 2009

Friends

Sunday, 8 March 2009

Klelia's new pics


Why dog is superior to man

And it definitely proves that there is intelligence and feelings in animals, two qualities close to extinction in humans

Life without limits

Everybody at some stage in their life will go through a very bad period where things go really really really bad for them. Sometimes we just give up. Well when we think of Nick Vujicic, a 24-year old australian who was born without limps, and now travels across the world with his team to preach strength, we should really take example. Hallo scriptwriters, if you are looking for a truly unique story, come here:

Slumdog millionaire

The movie was brilliant. Fullstop. The horror of poverty was depicted so clearly that it was impossible to tolerate. Even as a viewer -let alone a bystander, but that's another story. However, this is not where the movie brilliancy was. Poverty has been shown in many movies many times and if one has to gain top prize for it, this must be the brazilian movie 'The City of God'.
In Slumdog millionaire, the brilliancy had a name. Danny Boyle. What a remarkable work has this man given us!! The story of modern India, this great country with this remarkable culture who suffers its dark side. For poverty is worse when it takes place into the world's most racist environment - the cast society. That part of it, although never directly addressed it was present throughout the movie as an accepted part of life. Every time Jamal answered correctly, the game host would remind him what a low life he is by reminding everybody his low-paying blue collar job. The cast society would not expect a slumdog (a better term would be a teenager from the slums) to know the answers of the game and he was taken to the police for interrogation. That's when the other two stories unfold. That of India's nightmare and of Jamal's destiny to happiness. At the same time relationships unfold and grow and make destiny.
Despite the fact that the film was filmed and the story was all about India, it shouted out besides British humor (the autograph scene) the kingdom's aesthetics. Of the alternative kind. Of the kind of innovation in art that is so expected by Brit artists. Of any art. What Danny Boyle proved is that his art reach is depthless. Of course his entire team of hard working illuminated colleagues who sweat alongside with Danny behind the cameras absolutely must have at least a touch of genius. Yet, it was obvious that the entire movie was the vision of a man who gave part of himself in every aspect of it. Besides direction that was so innovative by going back to basics, so was photography and editing. Every minute in the movie had a cliffhanger, shot from an anortodox angle, and the constantly moving light gave a whole new dimension into every single frame. Let's not forget the music which was more the sound of India if anything else. The colorful light of Bombay darkened and tones narrowed around grey everytime the camera went close to the gloomy life of the protagonists.
It is really amazing what a fraction of the money usually available can produce if given to the hands of an artistic genius who can tell three different stories in one. In a captivating manner as well. Let alone if given to the hands of a team of geniuses. And if these employ all these little 5-year old geniuses. These children who played in the movie - and they were so many of them - were absolutely leaving all of us breathless.
Very powerful movie. Personally I preferred the emotion I got out of Benjamin Button (remember all that crying?), but this movie absolutely was worth its 8 academy awards. Most well deserved!

Friday, 6 March 2009

Pugs are the superior creatures in any planet

Don't you wish you were hot like Frankie (the Pug)???
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Pugs talk!

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