links for 2010-12-27

  • It is now clear that David Cameron systematically lied to the electorate. He said it was "sick" and "frankly disgusting" to say he would end the NHS guarantee for cancer patients to be seen within two weeks – and then scrapped NHS guarantees, so that the number of patients waiting months before their cancer is detected has doubled. He said hospitals were "my No 1 priority" to be "totally protected" – and then slashed 20 per cent from the budget of specialist hospitals across the country. He said he would "protect the poor" from cuts – and then slashed the income of each poor family by £1,000 and began forcing hundreds of thousands from their homes.
    (tags: cameron Tories)
  • Israel has successfully tested it's the Trophy APS (Active Protection System) with real missiles. Tanks equipped with Trophy were fired on with anti-tank missiles that had inert warheads. Thus, if the missile gets through, the tank crew feels a bump as the missile bounces off. But so far, no missiles have gotten through. Israel is undertaking this highly realistic (and expensive, the anti-tank missiles aren't cheap) testing to see how different conditions (the speed of the tank, the presence of dust and smoke, how close the missile launcher is) influence the performance of Trophy.
    (tags: weapons Israel)
  • The Booktrust charity had been expecting to see a 20% cut in its £13m-a-year government grant, but was then told it would be losing the entire sum.

    But, following a furious backlash from authors including leading children's writer Philip Pullman and former poet laureate Sir Andrew Motion, the Department for Education is to continue funding the charity's book-giving programme.

  • In November, The New York Times reported that approximately 9 million electronic reading devices are in use in the U.S. When holiday purchases are tallied, that number will most certainly go up. While there are many different kinds of e-readers, they share one thing in common: They need to be filled with books.

    Two years ago, e-books constituted 1% of total book sales, a figure that's now closer to 10%. As electronic media accounts for a larger and larger portion of the book business, consumers are benefiting from lower prices for books, and manufacturers are enjoying massive sales. But how is the e-book revolution affecting authors?

    See full article from DailyFinance:

  • “When something does happen it probably won’t be the emergency services making the key decisions,” he added. “It may be the person being paid £5.50 an hour at the front gate.”
    (tags: terror attack)