Global Witness has published a report on the jade industry in Myanmar, a trade "worth far more than previously thought - up to US$31 billion in 2014 alone. That is equivalent to nearly half the GDP of the whole country, which badly needs it. But hardly any of the money is reaching ordinary people or state coffers." [more inside]
In honour of Chinese jade hitting $3,000 an ounce, a quick context of what one ounce buys... $1300 $883 $350 $51.93 $20.08 $4.74
"Uh oh, They're here": A Washington Post editorial about Elisha Strom, who blogged about the Jefferson Area Drug Enforcement Task Force in northern Virginia with intensity and focus, displaying officers' photos, their cars, and in one now-gone entry, one officer's home. For this on July 16 she was arrested. [more inside]
A Visitor's Guide to Hell - A translation of the Chinese version of what happens to the human soul after death [with some illustrations]. [more inside]
The UKs Celebrity Big Brother provokes a diplomatic incident after bullying and alleged racism in the Big Brother house. At the center of the furor are Shilpa Shetty, massive bollywood film star, and Jade Goody, a previous Big Brother content famous for being a previous big brother contestant and her odd views on geography. Both Jade and Shetty are now up for eviction, with the formerly popular Jade being widely expected to be evicted. She could face trouble on the outside, where already an anti-bullying charity she represents has dropped her. Meanwhile Shetty has become favorite to win.
Ancient jades: Fascinating, beautiful, intricate carvings. Utilitarian, decorative, and of course historical.
Bus-size jade boulders found in Guatemala Great NY Times story [Google'd here] of archeologists tracking down a mother lode of translucent blue jade after it was exposed by a hurricane. The vein solves the mystery of where the ancient Olmecs got the jade for beautiful carvings like these. Olmec civilization, famous for its colossal stone heads, is itself considered something of a mother lode for later Central American peoples like the Maya. Meanwhile, some scientists in Guatemala are digging up things that are much less fun than jade.