Cyprus to have its first Gay Pride parade

Cyprus Mail reports:

Cyprus first-ever Gay Pride parade will be held in Nicosia on May 31 and it will be part of the 15-day-long Cyprus Pride Festival, according to ACCEPT LGBTI Cyprus head Costas Gavrielides.

Just for the record, I am against the parade.  Not against gay people, but against the parade.  I am as much against the Straight Pride parade.  I don’t think that sexual preferences are a good choice for parading.

As far as the actual rights, laws, and morals go – I do agree with some and do disagree with the other, but, once again, I think there are other ways to work them out.

Corruption in Cyprus

Around 55 per cent of companies in Cyprus who took part in a public tender over the last three years claim that corruption prevented them from winning the contract, the highest percentage in the EU, according to the Commission’s anti-corruption report published on Monday.

Conflicts of interest in bid evaluation were reported in 76 per cent of cases, collusive bidding in 68 per cent, abuse of negotiated procedures in 62 per cent, unclear selection or evaluation criteria in 61 per cent, and amendment of contract terms after the contract is concluded stood at 55 per cent.

This is dog crap!

Cyprus Mail reports:

DOG owners who walk their pets but don’t clean up after it is an increasing problem within the Nicosia municipality, which has launched an awareness campaign on the issue.

The campaign is titled: ‘Behind each dog we are looking for a responsible citizen not an uncaring owner’.

As part of the effort, municipal workers are visiting parks handing out flyers and plastic bags to people walking their dog.

And this made me so happy I’m not a dog owner:

Not cleaning after a dog can lead to a fine of €1,700 and/or up to 12 months in jail.

On a serious note, they are right of course.  I don’t know how bad it is in Nicosia, but I’ve seen plenty of dog owners in Limassol that just walk away from the steaming pile of crap their dog just left in the middle of the street.

According to the proposal, the state officials who are entitled to a luxury car are: the president of the Republic and the House president, the attorney general and the assistant attorney general, the chief negotiator for the Cyprus problem, ministers, ministry undersecretaries (if they are appointed), the auditor general, the accountant general, ministry permanent secretaries, supreme court judges, the house permanent secretary and all former Republic and House presidents.

Cyprus Mail

Central Bank of Cyprus says Bitcoin is dangerous. Really?

Mostly, I don’t really care what Central Bank of Cyprus  (CBC)thinks.  But sometimes, even I have to raise an eyebrow and say “Really?”.  So happened once again today, when I read this bit in Cyprus Mail:

The Central Bank (CBC) has said use of virtual currency bitcoin is extremely dangerous, the Cyprus News Agency (CNA) said on Tuesday.

“Using any virtual money is extremely dangerous because they are not monitored by any authority, thus operating without control,” CNA said, quoting the CBC.

I can understand the dangers coming from the digital nature of Bitcoin – hackers getting control of your money, or breaking into your servers for some extra mining power.  But saying that it’s dangerous because it is not controlled by the government? That’s a bit too far.  Especially considering this year’s banking crisis in Cyprus.

In fact, if you look around for a second opinion, the Bank of America recently said that Bitcoin will be a serious competitor to cash.  The article on Inc.com lists possibility of government regulation as one of the disadvantages to the new currency:

The risk of government regulation.

Bank of America says it is unlikely that the government will promote a new currency, especially one as suspect as Bitcoin. As the U.S. government is trying to figure out where Bitcoin fits into its tax and payment system, regulation of any kind would increase its transaction costs–offsetting one of its major benefits.