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Tuesday, May 06, 2008

Checking my numbers

Aid workers fear Burma cyclone deaths will top 50,000 - Times Online:
"Foreign aid workers in Burma have concluded that as many as 50,000 people died in Saturday’s cyclone, and two to three million are homeless, in a disaster whose scale invites comparison with the 2004 Indian Ocean tsunami.
The official death count after Cyclone Nargis is 15,000, and the
Thai Foreign Minister says he has been told that 30,000 people are missing. But due to the incompleteness of the information from the stricken Irrawaddy delta, UN and charity workers in the city of Rangoon privately believe that the number will eventually be several times higher."
Okay whenever I read numbers like this I begin to question population numbers ... after all how many people could there actually be in places like Myanmar - right?
Good thing I looked .... I find that I still have that small town mentality which is effecting my population estimations.
According to National Geographic, Myanmar (formally Burma) has:

Population: 50,519,000 (California had approx. 34,000,000 in 2000)
Area: 261,218 square miles (676,218 sq. km) - smaller than Texas, bigger than
Life Expectancy: 57 (US:77)
GDP* per Capita: $1,700 USD (11,143 Myanmar Kyats; 1 Kyat=19cents)
Literacy: 83% (India: 60%)
Independence from Britain in 1948 was followed by isolationism and socialism.
Military governments have ruled Myanmar since 1962 and have been accused of corruption, heroin trafficking, and human rights violations—including forcible relocation of civilians and use of forced labor.
In 1988 military forces killed more than a thousand pro-democracy demonstrators.
In 1990 national elections were held for parliament, but the military refused to recognize the results.
Myanmar is a resource-rich country with a strong agricultural base, and is a leading producer of gems, jade, and teak. However, military rule prevents the economy from developing, and the Burmese people remain poor and are getting poorer.

*NOTES: GDP = consumption + gross investment + government spending + (exports − imports) ~or~ GDP = C + I + G + (X-M)

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