Resource - The CIA World Factbook

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Redpossum
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Resource - The CIA World Factbook

Post by Redpossum » Wed Jan 18, 2006 1:23 am

http://www.cia.gov/cia/publications/factbook/index.html

If you are any sort of student, either formal or self-instructing (like me!), you should bookmark this site. It's a wonderful resource, (whatever one's political opinions of the Central Intelligence Agency), and is updated with truly amazing and gratifying regularity. For example the "World" entry I am about to quote from was last updated 7 days ago.
The surprising thing about the entries in the Factbook is the blunt candor with which facts are set forth.

Check these quotes from the "World" entry (at the very top of the list of nations, etc) -

From the section Environment - current issues -

"large areas subject to overpopulation, industrial disasters, pollution (air, water, acid rain, toxic substances), loss of vegetation (overgrazing, deforestation, desertification), loss of wildlife, soil degradation, soil depletion, erosion"

From the section Literacy -

"note: over two-thirds of the world's 785 million illiterate adults are found in only eight countries (India, China, Bangladesh, Pakistan, Nigeria, Ethiopia, Indonesia, and Egypt); of all the illiterate adults in the world, two-thirds are women; extremely low literacy rates are concentrated in three regions, South and West Asia, Sub-Saharan Africa, and the Arab states, where around one-third of the men and half of all women are illiterate (2005 est.)"

From the section Economy - overview -

"Externally, the nation-state, as a bedrock economic-political institution, is steadily losing control over international flows of people, goods, funds, and technology. Internally, the central government often finds its control over resources slipping as separatist regional movements - typically based on ethnicity - gain momentum, e.g., in many of the successor states of the former Soviet Union, in the former Yugoslavia, in India, in Iraq, in Indonesia, and in Canada. Externally, the central government is losing decisionmaking powers to international bodies, notably the European Union. In Western Europe, governments face the difficult political problem of channeling resources away from welfare programs in order to increase investment and strengthen incentives to seek employment. The addition of 75 million people each year to an already overcrowded globe is exacerbating the problems of pollution, desertification, underemployment, epidemics, and famine. Because of their own internal problems and priorities, the industrialized countries devote insufficient resources to deal effectively with the poorer areas of the world, which, at least from an economic point of view, are becoming further marginalized."

WOOF!

Is that blunt, or is that blunt?

What makes me howl with gales of laughter is comparing this level of candor to the way CIA spokespersons speak when you see them on TV, or read them quoted in the paper.

fatetriarrii
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Post by fatetriarrii » Wed Jan 18, 2006 2:27 am

lol. I have to say I was a little suprised to find that the "developed" or "western" countries did not make the literate list. :?

I never knew so few people in "our" region of the world could read. :shock:

Redpossum
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Post by Redpossum » Wed Jan 18, 2006 3:06 am

Bro, that's not the literate list, that's the illiterate list :)

fatetriarrii
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Post by fatetriarrii » Wed Jan 18, 2006 3:11 am

Oh, I thought that number looked small :?

Redpossum
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Post by Redpossum » Mon Dec 11, 2006 9:30 pm

Just a bump to remind my friends and colleagues of this valuable resource.

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