Terrorist violence is NOT increasing, according to the real experts

In December 2006, I put up a short post concerning the decreasing number of wars in the world as outlined in the Human Security Brief 2006, the follow-up to the well-respected Human Security Report 2005. Today, the Human Security Brief 2007 was released by the Human Security Report Group at Simon Fraser University‘s School for International Studies. (They were formally based at the Human Security Centre at UBC, when I worked there.)

I highly recommend you take at least a quick look, and think twice when you hear or read people saying that terrorism is an ever-increasing problem, wars are on the rise, etc. They need a sharp lesson in real world stats. And I’ll keep hoping that this trend doesn’t reverse.

“Challenging the expert consensus that the threat of global terrorism is increasing, the Human Security Brief 2007 reveals a sharp net decline in the incidence of terrorist violence around the world.”

For more info, see: http://www.humansecuritybrief.info/

Another Visit to the Hospital and an Interview

On Monday the 14th, I got to Mount Saint Joseph’s Hospital at the bright and early hour of 645am as planned several weeks ago. After some waiting, I was taken to a hospital bed and given a gown and knee high green socks to wear.

After asking a few questions, I was wheeled to an operating room where they put me on an IV drip (not sure if it was antibiotics or morphine or both at different times). The anaesthetist missed on his first poke on the back of my hand, so he taped that and tried again with more success on my inside elbow.

They then put a mask on my face and turned on the oxygen. I remember faintly tasting some rubbery smelling chemicals then the next thing I knew I was waking up in some other room. It was like waking up one of those mornings where you know you slept just the right amount and the sun woke you up with the wind billowing the curtains in your room.

I spent another hour or so in the recovery room, then got wheeled back to my original spot and after a while more they let me get dressed and I walked out to the car when I saw my dad drive in to the parking lot.

Oh, I guess I should elaborate on why I was there – it was a routine, minor procedure to repair a hernia. About 10% of guys will get one during their life because of a weakness in the muscle tissue which hasn’t yet been solved by evolution (nor will it likely, seeing as how it no longer really affects chances of survival or reproduction in the developed world).

Yesterday I hobbled to an interview at the Liu Institute for Global Issues at UBC. The interview was for a position as French-language research assistant with the Human Security Gateway, an innovative online database project launched in January, 2005. For a quick look at this concept, check out www.HumanSecurityGateway.info.

The interview went well I think. It seemed a bit short, so perhaps my answers weren’t detailed enough or I spoke too quickly. I was in a bit of pain but I did my best not to let it distract me. Even if I don’t get the job, however, I did get something out of it: they gave me a copy of the 2005 Human Security Report free of charge!

(This cover image is taken from the Human Security Report website)

It’s a $30 publication, compiled by the Human Security Centre at the Liu Institute and sponsored by the governments of Canada, the UK, Norway, Sweden, and Switzerland. Impressive, to say the least, and definitely a convenient and interesting research tool for me.

And now, in a few minutes, I’m heading out to Bowen Island to stay until tomorrow afternoon for my granny’s 97th birthday. I missed her 96th last year when I was in New Zealand, and I’ll be working on the 20th when she celebrates, but tomorrow is her actual birthday so we’ll have a smaller birthday lunch with her then.