Montag, Oktober 30, 2006


new words

proliferate, pullulate, catty

Mittwoch, Oktober 25, 2006


diversity youth forum

Opening address for the “diversity youth forum” in Budapest

Dear participants and friends,

I am not satisfied with the world as it is today.

This is my motivation to be active in a volunteer organisation. Wealth is distributed very unequal; there is a lot of discrimination, violence and hostility around; we are all hindered in our development because of outdated and rigid role models that we should follow but that no one will ever be able to live up to. And honestly, why should we.

The European Youth forum is an umbrella organisation of almost 100 National Youth Councils and International Non-Governmental Youth Organisations. Together with our members we are trying to be advocates of social change, a change that would allow more people, already when being young, to enjoy the right of being who they are in dignity. We are advocating for Diversity, Human Rights and Participation in our daily work and this is why we deem this campaign as fundamental.

Following News and Headlines it seems everything is about the prevention of tensions between cultures and the “war on terror” today, especially on the lips of decision makers. This is a fear driven debate. This worries many young people.
We do question the trend that sees the fight against terrorism as a legitimate reason to commit Human Rights violations. Words such as Peace, Freedom, Liberty, Equality for all seem to have disappeared from the public debate. Though those are values that the Youth Forum and in fact many of you are fighting for. And these are values and visions that we all should not forget in the current debates about clashing civilisations and terrorism.
The diverse identities of Europe’s citizens are an asset for our future and are key for our continent to seize the opportunities offered by the process of globalisation.

I can fully understand how easy and comfortable it is to think in boxes and label people. Having a little box for every group of people means that we do not need to understand anything or even think, because everything is pre-decided. The world would be much simpler and more comprehendible. Austrians wear Lederhosen, Russians drink Vodka every day, Gays love Abba, Unemployed people are lazy, Italians talk to much, Black people are drug dealers and Muslims are terrorists – well, fortunately the world is not that easy. Our identities have many more layers.
And yes, it is not easy to be equal but diverse.
We have to challenge our own stereotypes – our internalised Racisms, our own homophobia, Islamophobia and Anti-Semitism, our daily Sexism. I sincerely believe that we need to question our own preconceptions and scrutinize the systems that we are living in.

Even where adequate anti-discrimination legislation is in place already, it is often ignored in essential questions. Policies are often oriented on a norm citizen who does not exist or are just giving more opportunities to those who already have plenty of opportunities.
States are promoting Anti-Racist campaigns and initiatives and they are supporting diversity measures whilst being fundamentally discriminatory themselves. This seems to be no longer a contradiction.
It is all about Power relations and social change.
Many people speak about equality it and pay lip service, but the steps taken are incredibly small compared to the amount of words and promises in the field.

Youth has always been at the front line of social change, and through this campaign, we are aiming to be the guardians, promoters and multipliers of Diversity, Human Rights and Participation. Your multitude of experiences, realities and identities has to be the main contribution to the success of the campaign. But for this you have to take your experience from here home with you and continue working with it – it is your responsibility to multiply the conclusions of this Forum and to operationalise them, to implement them. Otherwise this event will just remain one Symposium amongst many.

I have asked some people yesterday why they came here and want to share some of the answers with you.
One person said I came because Rui invited me. Other answers were:
I want to gain new knowledge.
I want to make new contacts.
I believe in this campaign.
I always combine the business and pleasure approach.
These were some of the expectations of this seminar, and I hope these expectations will be met for all of us.

Good luck and enjoy the conference.

Samstag, Oktober 14, 2006


stand up against poverty

October 15 and 16 are the Global Days of Action on poverty, and millions of people from over 30 countries will be coming together to literally 'stand up' against poverty. If enough people register for these events, it will be a part of new entry in the Guinness Book of World Records and bring publicity to the fight against extreme poverty. And believe me, that is much more relevant then the „world egg day“
We should Stand Up because:
- Every day 24,000 people die from hunger
- Every day more than 100 million children are denied the chance to go to school
- Every day 1.1 billion people have to drink polluted water
- Every day 8,200 people die due to HIV/AIDS

People Stood Up Against Poverty
Official Guinness World Record



I cannot understand why France passed this bill making it a crime to deny Armenians suffered genocide by Ottoman Turks. There are similar laws in France, Austria, Germany and may other European Countries that punishes deniers of the Holocaust. This is clearly limiting the freedom of speech. Now where do I see the difference between the Holocaust denial law and the denial of the Armenian genocide bill?
Well, the holocaust denial bills were all passed between 1945 and 1950 in the countries that were part of the holocaust – right after World War II had ended. The Armenian Genocide bill is passed almost 90 years later in a country that had nothing to do with the Armenian Massacre though the Ottoman Empire during World War I.
As a clear civil libertarian I can accept that in context and time it was important to pass holocaust denial bills, but it would be strange to me if Hungary or Portugal would now pass a bill making its denial illegal.
I am convinced a law that tries to forbid anyone to think or say something cannot be successful.
I am in favour of increasing the pressure on countries that violate human rights and deny previous violations, I am fully aware that not all diplomatic measures are full used in this respect, I am happy to see that there is a public debate about it, but the suggested French bill will help no one. As a friend said to me on Thursday, it will be as relevant as a Danish newspaper publishing Jesus cartoons. It will be missing the point and failing to address the real issue.

Freitag, Oktober 13, 2006


celebrate world egg day

Friday 13th October celebrates myths and superstition, but luckily for egg lovers across the globe, it will also be about breaking down these beliefs and celebrating the taste and convenience of eggs on World Egg Day.
Whether painting them with the kids, eating soft-boiled googy eggs or running races with them balanced on a spoon – celebrate the egg.
As a convenient, versatile and nutritious food, eggs have formed an integral part of many cuisines across the globe.
The American celebration of Thanksgiving is the fourth Thursday of November each year. Christmas is December 25 and New Year’s Eve is December 31. The date of Hanukkah changes each year but is usually around Thanksgiving and Christmastime. All these times are happy occasions when families and friends celebrate together. And, when families celebrate, eggs are often part of the fun.

Donnerstag, Oktober 12, 2006


corporate social responsibility

Corporate social responsibility is the continuing commitment by business to behave ethically and contribute to economic development while improving the quality of life of the workforce and their families as well as of the local community and society at large. And everyone talks about it. I have been trying to find an NGO or community projects that was financed by CSR money. And it seems impossible. There is the Horizon trust, which is the only thing that I could figure out that is European and a bit NGO like, but they are not available the weekend i need them. There is so much corporate money out there; I cannot believe that in the wide range of NGOs that I am in contact with not a single one is running projects that are in the annual report of a business as their CSR comittment for the year. So all you out there, if you know someone with experience - bad and good – of running a community project with continuous corporate support, please contact me.

Dienstag, Oktober 10, 2006


finally new words

Sedulous, deceitful, scavenger hunt


a tribute

Statler: Wake up you old fool. You slept through the show.
Waldorf: Who's a fool? You watched it.

Statler: You know, this show really improves with age!
Waldorf: Why? Because the jokes get better?
Statler: No! Because my hearing gets worse!

Donnerstag, Oktober 05, 2006


pink fairy armadillo

for everyone who always wondered if it really exists. It does, its the thing that Wilma Flintstone uses to do her finger nails and my favorite animal. Please take care of this endangered species!
see also wikipedia entry: pink fairy armadillo


home sweet home

Today I get a new flat mate. The last time for this year i hope. Welcome home climo!

Montag, Oktober 02, 2006



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