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Bob Harris

Entries by Bob Harris

Perhaps Congress Can Also Honor Dr. Yunus by Paying Attention to Him

(0) Comments | Posted April 22, 2013 | 11:36 AM

Last week, House Speaker John Boehner (R-OH), House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-CA), Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV), and Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) presented Dr. Muhammad Yunus with a Congressional Gold Medal in recognition of his efforts to alleviate poverty. More than 100 other Congresspeople...

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How to Get From Machu Picchu to Kathmandu on a Kiva Lender's Budget

(0) Comments | Posted February 19, 2013 | 4:05 PM

For my upcoming book about trying to visit Kiva and other microfinance clients in the field, I traveled around the world with side trips on five continents, visiting destinations both frequently touristed (Cusco, Siem Reap, Cebu) and less so (Sarajevo, Kigali, Chennai). Given that

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Helping a Small Business By (Literally) Blowing Things Up

(0) Comments | Posted January 31, 2013 | 1:29 PM

I'm about to help a new friend blow up some stuff in Nicaragua.

This really isn't what I originally set out to do when I came to this country. But it seems like a good idea now. Mostly because Luis Alberto is so pleased about it.

Luis Alberto...

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Toys for Tots for Homeboys (and Homegirls) for Christmas

(0) Comments | Posted December 25, 2012 | 4:23 PM

Jesse is ten years old. He's a bright and friendly kid. When he first saw me, I must have seemed confused, because he walked right up, asked what I was looking for, and led me right to it. Now we're chatting near a window with a view of cement, traffic,...

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A Near-Zero-Cost Approach to Do-Gooding: My 375th Kiva Loan

(4) Comments | Posted June 16, 2009 | 4:02 AM

Maria Shriver promotes it, Hillary Clinton talks it up in commencement speeches, and the guy who thought it up won a Nobel Peace Prize: microfinance may the world's fastest-growing and arguably trendiest form of lending a hand.

If the news hasn't yet reached you through the media...

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This Wasn't a Landing, This Was a Die Hard Movie

(0) Comments | Posted January 15, 2009 | 11:39 PM

Using tracking data from and Google Maps, this Flickr user has already plotted the exact course of the USAir flight that landed in the Hudson today. (Click on the map for full size.)

This isn't a commercial pilot. This isn't just a regular...

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Fox News: It's Eductaoinal!

(0) Comments | Posted July 22, 2008 | 5:45 AM

Hat tips to ThinkProgress and NewsHounds.

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The Momentum Conference in SF: Sharing What's Working

(0) Comments | Posted July 22, 2008 | 5:37 AM

I'm sitting here at Momentum watching Alex Gibney, director of Taxi to the Dark Side, talking about waterboarding, Gitmo, and how America descended into a country willing to torture and even kill people, even if they're innocent (as many Gitmo and Abu Ghraib internees have turned...

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Conviction in the Murder of Victor Jara -- 35 Years Late

(4) Comments | Posted May 19, 2008 | 4:33 PM

In 1973, Victor Jara was Chile's leading singer/songwriter, the local equivalent of Bob Dylan and more.

When Gen. Augusto Pinochet's coup came -- September 11th, 1973 -- tens of thousands of people considered threats to the regime -- activists,...

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The Psychology of Hope: Why Obama's Words Are More Effective Than Hillary's

(0) Comments | Posted February 27, 2008 | 5:52 PM

I noticed something in Obama's and Clinton's choices of language in the Cleveland debate last night, something the newest ads from each campaign manage to illustrate precisely.

Clinton increasingly describes herself as a "fighter" who will "stand up" for people. Checking the transcript, Clinton used the word "fight" or...

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Travel Pics: One Thing Young People Everywhere Share

(0) Comments | Posted January 20, 2008 | 5:56 PM

Walking the beach in Bocagrande a couple of weeks ago, I stumbled across some Colombian teenagers burying a male friend in the sand.

The Colombian kids, being just like kids everywhere, were giving the guy a large pair of sand breasts and giggling naughtily. Like they were the first ones...

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Travel Pics Not in the Guidebook: Worst Tourism Slogan Ever

(0) Comments | Posted December 20, 2007 | 9:04 PM

I'm not sure this came out exactly the way the Colombian authorities intended:


Colombia: The Only Risk is Wanting to Stay.

Either it needs work, or somebody inside the Tourism Board is trying to sneak out a warning to others.

I'd say the former, though....

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Travel Pics Not in the Guidebook: Imagine Being a Kid in Colombia

(0) Comments | Posted December 17, 2007 | 6:43 PM

As a lifelong fan of the crudely named and endlessly frustrating Cleveland Indians, I couldn't help but smile to see that folks in Colombia are also willing to turn fellow human beings into mascots for a team that never wins the title.

Ladies and gentlemen, the last-place Cartagena Indians:

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Travel Pics Not in the Guidebook: Colombia's Version of "Just Say No"?

(0) Comments | Posted December 15, 2007 | 8:10 PM

I'm traveling around South America for a couple of months, and every day is filled with stuff I never would have imagined otherwise. (Btw, my Spanish isn't very good yet, but estoy aprendiendo. Deal with it.) I'll try to share a few glimpses of what I find here.


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Violence Against Women in the D.R. Congo: The Most Horrible Thing You Will Read Today -- And, Unfortunately, Perhaps The Last You'll Hear Of It For Weeks

(0) Comments | Posted November 26, 2007 | 3:12 AM

Here's a bit from the latest report on the Democratic Republic of the Congo from the International Rescue Committee:

"It was not uncommon to hear accounts of armed groups seizing young women from farms or water points and enslaving them and raping them for one to three months,"...
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Floods in Mexico: Not Exactly Over, Despite the News Cycle

(0) Comments | Posted November 7, 2007 | 1:32 PM

The floods in Tabasco have left countless people homeless. Nobody knows how many yet. Although 60-70,000 people are in shelters so far.

Certainly hundreds of thousands of people are affected, their homes cut off by the water, flooded, partially destroyed, or simply washed away entirely.

Roughly 20,000...

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Jeopardy! Winner Hiking for Families of Wounded and Disabled Veterans

(0) Comments | Posted October 31, 2007 | 6:22 PM

Whatever you think of the White House or its war strategies, here's a way to help the wounded and disabled veterans who are arguably the Americans most directly on the receiving end:

David Madden, boy genius

Nineteen-game Jeopardy!...

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Next Up: The Aussie Dollar?

(0) Comments | Posted October 29, 2007 | 2:22 PM

Five Kangaroos and climbingFive years ago, the Australian dollar was about worth about US $0.55. (You can look this up here.)

It was hovering around US $0.75 the last couple of times I was down there.


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White House Pretends Probable Cause of California Wildfires Simply Doesn't Exist

(0) Comments | Posted October 24, 2007 | 6:06 PM

[Added Saturday, Oct. 27th: looking back in advance of a CNN gig tomorrow, the word "cause" in that headline was poorly chosen. I meant "a" probable cause, not "the" probable cause, as you can see from the concluding sentence, but the phrase "contributing factor" or similar would have been much...

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"Nobel Economics Winner Says Market Forces Flawed"

(0) Comments | Posted October 16, 2007 | 7:32 PM

That's an actual current Reuters headline.

Princeton professor Eric Maskin shares this year's Nobel Prize in economics with two colleagues; the trio are pioneers in the field of mechanism design theory, which is dedicated to finding ways to make markets work more efficiently and fairly.

Maskin dares to say...

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