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Wounded planet

The biodiversity crisis is worse than climate change. This was the conclusion of leading international experts, meeting in Paris last week to assess the status of ecosystems. More than 1 million species will be annihilated in the next decades. Plants, insects and other creatures will be irreversibly lost. Growing food in certain areas such as […]

Frankenstein

Two hundred years ago Mary Shelley published Frankenstein, or The Modern Prometheus. This publication launched one of the most powerful metaphors in the ethical discourse on healthcare, medicine and medical science. It is usually regarded as the expression of horror and anxiety about science and its discoveries. In her recent book In search of Mary […]

Moral leadership

We live in curious times. Human rights are under attack, not only by Russia and China, but also by the United States. They are undermining democracies and supporting authoritarian regimes, ruthless autocrats, and right-wing parties. Duterte, Erdogan, Nazarbayev, Kim Jong Un, Putin, and Sissi are all welcome at the White House. The current president and […]

More about miracles

From time to time we read stories of people waking up from death. In January, a prisoner in Spain was declared dead by three doctors and put in a body bag. He woke up on the autopsy table just before the post-mortem examination. This is the nightmare of many people; it happens sometimes. Another nightmare […]

Trumps’ miracles

On May 30, 2018, President Trump signed the right-to-try bills. This legislation gives people with life-threatening diseases the right to use unapproved experimental drugs. The driving force of legislating this new right is miracle discourse and hope. Hugging a boy with muscular dystrophy, Trump exclaimed that hundreds of thousands of lives will be saved with […]

No water, sorry

July 9 will be Day Zero for the people in Cape Town, South Africa. That day, the available drinking water will be depleted. The city will be the first in the world without water. Unprecedented measures have already been taken. Each citizen can only use 50 liters of water per day. This is the minimum […]

Sniffing diesel

Air pollution kills 6.1 million people each year. It accounts for nearly 12 percent of the global death toll in 2016. This data, provided by the Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation in Seattle, illustrates that polluted air is a growing problem of public health and bioethics. At the same time AIDS kills 1.2 million […]

Mysterious illness

In October 2017, 24 American diplomats working at the US embassy in Havana were recalled. Allegedly, they were victims of acoustic attacks by the Cubans. Since November 2016 they had developed a range of symptoms: headache, dizziness, sleep disturbance, visual symptoms, cognitive and hearing difficulties, disorientation and balance problems. The symptoms were attributed to strange […]

Narcolands

The Netherlands has become a narco-state. Two days ago, the Dutch police union concluded that the police are unable to combat organized crime. Based on interviews with 400 detectives, the union clarifies that the policy of tolerance towards the sale of soft drugs in coffee shops has created a huge market for trafficking of drugs […]

Eating antibiotics

Resistance to antibiotics is a growing global problem. Two years ago, a 49 woman in Pennsylvania had a urinary infection with bacteria that were resistant to any available antibiotics. These superbugs are a nightmare. This was the first time such case showed up in the United States. It means that infections will become untreatable. Like […]

Buried in plastic

‘Plastic China’ is a documentary about the unregulated waste dumps in China. Tens of millions of tons of plastic from the developed world are exported to the country for so-called ‘recycling.’ The film was screened at the Sundance Film Festival last year, went viral, and disappeared from the internet in China, due to ‘some invisible […]

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