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Are you sick of hearing the same old news repeated day in and day out? Trump, Brexit, EU, Putin…sometimes you just have to say, enough is enough.

We all know about the big players on the world stage, but what about the little guys? On my blog, I research the local news on every single one of the 196 states (yes, I’m including Taiwan!) and bring it to you on a regular basis. I’ll show you the history, cultural events, and key news reports as they occur. And for those of you out there who avoid the news because it’s all “doom and gloom”, I’ll find you the light in the darkness, the happy times throughout the hardship. But it will be actual news. It won’t just be pictures of kittens and puppies in different climates.

So, check out my page if you’re interested in this weird and wacky world we’re all stuck living in.

I’m Sam, and this, my friends, is Academic Research.  

Charity rescue ship with 265 migrants anchors off Italy — The China Post, Taiwan

ROME (AP) — Italy allowed a Spanish-flagged charity ship with 265 rescued migrants aboard to anchor off Sicily on Monday. The Open Arms vessel had brought the migrants safely aboard in separate rescues last week in the central Mediterranean. Port officials in Porto Empedocle, Sicily, said rough seas Monday evening were for the time being delaying the transfer of minors, reported to number 50, to a shelter on land after they tested negative for the coronavirus. The remaining adults were expected to be transferred to a ferry chartered by Italy earlier in the COVID-19 pandemic so the migrants can do two weeks of quarantine as others rescued at sea have done. Open Arms said 96 of those rescued had been adrift two days in a wooden boat without life vests in international waters. It said the passengers, most of them from Eritrea, included two women and 17 minors and were suffering from hypothermia when rescued. In an earlier, separate operation, Open Arms had taken aboard 169 migrants, who had departed Libyan shores, where many human traffickers are based. Traffickers launch unseaworthy dinghies or fishing boats, crowded with migrants who have paid them in hopes of reaching Europe so they can seek asylum. Many of the hundreds of thousands of migrants who have been rescued at sea in recent years are fleeing poverty and eventually are denied asylum by European Union countries. Italy is trying to get fellow EU nations to take in many of the migrants who are brought ashore after rescue since many of the passengers are aiming to get to northern Europe where relatives or jobs await them.

Charity rescue ship with 265 migrants anchors off Italy — The China Post, Taiwan

China’s Genocide of Uyghurs — China – in His image

Decrying “racial injustice” in America has become a prominent part of some U.S. companies’ public image. But when it comes to China committing “the largest incarceration of an ethno religious minority since the Holocaust,” they seem to think profits are more important. This summer, as anarchic protests tore through American cities, Nike made headlines after […]

China’s Genocide of Uyghurs — China – in His image

Iran Announces 20% Uranium Enrichment and Seizes South Korean Tanker In The Strait of Hormuz — Today’s Defense & International Relations Topics

Iran has been busy on this first Monday of the new year. The Iranian government announced it has started enriching uranium up to twenty percent at an underground facility at Fordo, a town situated south of the holy city of Qom. According to the announcement, orders for the enrichment were given personally by Iranian President […]

Iran Announces 20% Uranium Enrichment and Seizes South Korean Tanker In The Strait of Hormuz — Today’s Defense & International Relations Topics

Country Profile: Antigua and Barbuda

Population Size: 96,286

Area: 440 km2

Main language(s): English

Primary religion(s): Christianity

Life expectancy: Male = 72.5 , Female = 77.5

Geography: Two low-lying, small islands that form a nation.

Current leader: Gaston Browne

Bordering countries: None

Stability: Fairly safe, main problems are petty crime, tropical storms/hurricanes and earthquakes.

Debt: $1440 million

Country Profile: Angola

Population Size: 30,136,000

Area: 1,246,700 km2

Main language(s): Portugese

Primary religion(s): None

Life expectancy: Male = 58.2, Female = 62.3

Geography: Variety of landscapes, including semi-desert bordering Namibia, a rainforest centre, and rugged highlands in the south.

Current leader: João Lourenço

Bordering countries: Namibia, Zambia, Republic of the Congo, Democratic Republic of the Congo,

Stability: Medium-high. High crime rates. Was at war at the beginning of the 21st century; malnutrition and landmines are still a problem. However, the vast supply of natural resources holds promise for the future.

Debt: $3.4bn

Self Care

2020 was truly awful in so many ways. That year was my hell, but goddamn did it teach me some important lessons.

  1. Never completely rely on someone else.
  2. Self care is actually important, and can make a big difference on your mood
  3. Same for practising gratitude and pride. Seriously, what the hell? Why had I not been doing this before?

Okay, I know why I didn’t do it before. It felt stupid. Really, really stupid. I viewed it in the same way some people view therapy. But if you ever get those moments where life feels like it’s stabbing you in the chest (emotionally) from the moment you wake up to the moment you fall asleep, these practices make the pain a lot more manageable. They don’t get rid of it completely, but it’s the difference between staring at a wall all day because you just can’t move, to being able to perform the necessary daily tasks to keep you and your household functioning.

So everyday I force myself to come up with my three 5s: five things I’m grateful for, 5 things I’m proud of in myself, and 5 acts of self care I’ve done that day. It’s hard, but it is possible.

Let’s say I’m feeing really hellish, and it’s one of those days where I can barely get out of bed. Here’s what I’d come up with:

Grateful

  • got shelter
  • got a bed I can lay in, instead of being at a roadside somewhere
  • got privacy
  • I’ve got family and people I care about who are still alive
  • nothing stays the same, so this horrible feeling will go away eventually

Proud

  • I made the right decisions before this day, so that when bad things happen and I need to rest I have the option to do so safely
  • I’m avoiding vices like alcohol, cigarettes, drugs, etc (always helps to keep these in a separate room if you do partake, it makes it more effort to get to them)
  • I’m still alive somehow
  • I don’t go and lash out at others when I feel bad
  • I’m making the effort to work on lists like these

Self care

  • Binge watch favourite TV show
  • Listen to an inspirational podcast (Jordan Peterson’s a favourite go-to for when I’m in these moods)
  • Brush hair
  • Change clothes (and shower if you can, but change clothes at least)
  • Play a game

Everyone’s got their own version of low and high functioning, so if your off day is worse than this it’s okay. And sometimes you won’t get to all five things on any of them, but even just coming up with one is better than none.

I hope this proves helpful to someone out there!

The history of Jujutsu in Britain

The Tai Chi Notebook

As you’ll know from listening to our “History of Kempo and Jiujitsu” podcast episdoes, Japan was opened up to the West in 1852, but it would take a while yet for Japanese martial arts to reach British soil. As revealed in the article “The Golden Square Dojo and its place in British Jujitsu history“ by David Brough, in issue 10 of Martial Arts Studies, the Bartitsu School of Arms and Physical Culture of Edward William Barton-Wright was the first martial arts club to introduce Jujutsu to the U.K in London (along with other things, like Savate), but it quickly seeded ground to more traditional Jujitsu dojos in Britain. Jujutsu was originally taught in the Golden Square Dojo in Piccadilly Circus, which opened in 1903, and was run the teacher Sadakazu Uyenishi.

Sadakazu Uyenishi, 1905 text book on Jujiusu.

Here’s a short film about him – the forgotten grappler:

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The Shoshone Nation’s battle against nuclear racism and trespassers on indigenous land

It is our moral duty to bring injustice like this to light

nuclear-news

Trespassers on Native land, Linda Pentz Gunter  January 3, 2021 by beyondnuclearinternational  “……………When the military industrial complex showed up in Shoshone country to test its atomic bombs, or excavate a mountain for a potential radioactive waste dump, they were there “as trespassers,” says Ian Zabarte, Principle Man of the Western Bands of the Shoshone Nation of Indians, and this year’s winner of Beyond Nuclear’s  Dr. Judith H. Johnsrud “Unsung Hero” Award.“The United States gave away Shoshone property before there was the United States here,” Zabarte explained during a recent on-line teach-in about uranium and Indigenous rights.

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New Year, New You, Right?

Hey folks, I’m back!

I’d say I don’t know why I stopped, but let’s face it, I do. I’d started a new job around June and it needed my undevoted attention. Unfortunately it didn’t last, as the boss closed up shop and when my contract ended that was that. He was pretty new to being a boss and I think there may have been some complications popping up that he hadn’t accounted for, but he was a genuinely lovely and supportive bloke. Was definitely glad for the opportunity to work for him and learn about web development!

I’m now 25 – young to some, but damn I feel like I’ve not achieved much. Getting a job in IR is hard, and there don’t seem to be many jobs demanding a Chinese translator right now…

But I’ve figured, I can either mope about it and surrender to a life of jobs that kill my soul, or I could kick myself up the arse and deal with some discomfort David Goggins style.

I’ve got a routine I’m going to try to stick to: 6AM start for a fresh coffee, yoga and a walk, then 3 hours of job hunting, 3 hours of translating (ooh have I got a book for you guys!), 3 hours of uni work, and 3 of blogging. The rest of my time will be spent on self care, from bubbly baths and makeup, to shooting if the firing ranges ever open up again.

Main goals for this year:

  • get a job ASAP
  • finish translating this book
  • write my own book
  • reach my dream weight of 55kg

Help me stay accountable guys, and if you’ve got any goals for this year post ’em in the comments!

Why Today Is Important: 24th June

This is a special day for my readers in Peru, and for anyone who has Incan ancestry! For today, is Inti Raymi!

Inti was the ancient god of the sun, worshipped during the Inca Empire, and today was famously his day to feast with the goddess of the earth, Pachamama.

Now, traditionally it was held on the 21st, to mark the winter solstice in the southern hemisphere, but with the spread of Christian settlers and invaders the festival was moved to avoid overlap with any feasts they may have had at this time.

Given the all-powerful influence Inti and Pachamama had over mankind’s fate, sacrifices and feasts like this were essential for survival, and the bright, joyous atmosphere of these events gave the people something to enjoy in the harsh winter months! Maybe not so much the people being sacrificed, but definitely for the non-dying party goers.

For anybody thinking of going to Machu Pichu, this is the time of year to go. It’s expensive, but the festivities are gorgeous. The outifts are intricate and bright, the actors are dedicated and perform all day long, and you can see all sorts of displays: golden chariots, massive bonfires, faux sacrifices to represent the old traditions.

It’s a beautiful display, so if you do go I have but one request.

Please take photos!

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