Opinion

Our Best Defense Against Terrorists

How we react to terrorism has become a measure of who we are, as individuals and as a society. It is not clear yet whether the heinous massacre in Nice, France, was the work of a “lone wolf” or a terrorist network, but in a way it doesn’t matter. Each new attack, each new convulsion of fear, horror, grief and anger is a progressively greater test of enlightened civilization’s commitment to its core values… Source: Our Best Defense Against Terrorists ... Read More »

Are We on the Path to National Ruin?

Europe in the 1930s and America in the 1890s faced many troubling conditions like we do today. San Antonio — I never really understood how fascism could have come to Europe, but I think I understand better now. You start with some fundamental historical transformation, like the Great Depression or the shift to an information economy. A certain number of people are dispossessed. They lose identity, self-respect and hope… Source: Are We on the Path to National Ruin? – The ... Read More »

Britain’s rebuke holds message for America

Since its unfortunate vote to leave the European Union, Britain has experienced a tragicomic round of backstabbing, foot-dragging and second-guessing. Europe, meanwhile has mostly behaved with admirable good sense. The Europeans seem to understand that the Brexit vote is a wake-up call about dissatisfaction with the E.U. that’s nearly as widespread on the continent as it is in Britain. Germany, in particular, recognizes that unless the E.U. can quickly show a readiness to reform and streamline… Source: Britain’s rebuke holds ... Read More »

A Real Estate Developer Can Go Bankrupt. A President Can’t.

After the recent Brexit vote in Britain, Donald J. Trump, the presumptive Republican nominee for president, commented on the fallout: “I don’t want to have a plummeting pound. But if it does plummet, I do well.” Similarly, in 2006, before the collapse in the housing market, Mr. Trumpsaid, “I sort of hope that happens because then people like me would go in and buy.”… Source: A Real Estate Developer Can Go Bankrupt. A President Can’t. – The New York Times Read More »

The people trying to save democracy from itself

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New experiments in democracy around the world are trying to take politics back to ordinary people.. These are difficult days for democracy. European nations struggle to elect governments on low turnouts. Populists wielding half-truths go from strength to strength. Facts are a devalued currency, personalities never more important… Source: The people trying to save democracy from itself | World news | The Guardian Read More »

Chechnya: The power of public humiliation

Honour, dignity and freedom have lost their significance under Kadyrov’s rule.. Last January I went to Chechnya. When I was in Moscow airport, I got a call: “Marta, I’m sorry, you can’t stay with me in Grozny like I promised. I’ve had to leave Chechnya urgently, my life was in danger.”… Source: Chechnya: The power of public humiliation – Al Jazeera English Read More »

The Guardian view on the Australian election: big ideas shrink in a small-target campaign

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Editorial: The 2016 campaign began with high hopes for bold and positive policies. Eight long weeks later, the major parties have let themselves down.. The 2016 Australian election campaign began with the hope that big ideas and bold positive policies might mean voters would be able to choose the party that inspired them the most rather than the one they despised the least…. Source: The Guardian view on the Australian election: big ideas shrink in a small-target campaign | Opinion ... Read More »

The liberal left is trapped in a death spiral: progressives need to throw the reset switch

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At a crucial moment in history, it’s worth thinking about the evolution of progressive ideas, in the US, the UK and in Australia.. The remarkable story in the latest Mother Jones about life in the American private prison system helps us think through a remarkable US election – and, more generally, the death spiral in which the liberal left seems to have trapped itself… Source: The liberal left is trapped in a death spiral: progressives need to throw the reset ... Read More »

The noble aim of open justice and the public’s right to know

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In high-profile court cases there is much we never get to hear about. Do we wrap our jurors in cotton wool, and what is the public’s right to know?.. Barrels of ink are required for the reporting of high crimes and misdemeanours. A decent murder, drugs trafficking, corporate skulduggery or kidnapping trial is a favourite part of the media diet and also feeds the insatiable appetite of the public’s curiosity, or as we sometimes more grandly put it, “the public’s ... Read More »

Fintan O’Toole: Brexit fantasy is about to come crashing down

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Brexit vote reveals rancour and distrust at the heart of the English body politic.. Mark Paul and Joe Brennan look at how Brexit will affect the Irish economy. Did you ever see a slightly drunk man trying that trick with the tablecloth? He thinks he can whip the cloth off the table with a fast, clean snap, but leave all the crockery perfectly intact… Source: Fintan O’Toole: Brexit fantasy is about to come crashing down Read More »

Brexit won’t shield Britain from the horror of a disintegrating EU

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Bringing democrats together across borders is needed now to prevent a slide into a xenophobic, 1930s-like abyss Leave won because too many British voters identified the EU with authoritarianism, irrationality and contempt for parliamentary democracy while too few believed those of us who claimed that another EU was possible… Source: Brexit won’t shield Britain from the horror of a disintegrating EU | Yanis Varoufakis | Opinion | The Guardian Read More »

Here’s what to read and watch to understand the European Union

By Amy Studdart Amy Studdart is a fellow at the German Marshall Fund of the United States. On Thursday, 52 percent of my British compatriots voted to leave the European Union. Politicians and pundits seemed shocked by the result, which caused markets to tumble and cost Prime Minister David Cameron his job. But the U.K.’s international ambivalence didn’t come out of the blue; it was built on decades of fears and fissures. Here are some great books, a binge-worthy political ... Read More »

Tony Blair: Brexit’s Stunning Coup

London — THE decision of British voters in Thursday’s referendum to leave the European Union will have vast consequences for Britain, for Europe and for the world. By TONY BLAIR * For a day, the British people were the government, and by 52 percent to 48 percent, they took the decision to go… Source: Tony Blair: Brexit’s Stunning Coup – The New York Times Read More »

The focus on domestic violence is good. But let’s hear more about solutions than deaths

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The answers to why women get killed by intimate partners and how we can stop it happening again are just as newsworthy as how a women was killed – but mostly absent from public conversation.. A few nights ago I was watching the evening news. As a self-confessed news junkie, it’s hard for me to forego my daily dose of what’s going on in the world… Source: The focus on domestic violence is good. But let’s hear more about solutions ... Read More »

Asylum seekers: Dangerous voyage a test of decency

The fate of a small boat stranded in Indonesia with 44 Sri Lankans on board looms as a test of human decency, for Australia as much as Indonesian authorities. The vessel has been marooned almost a fortnight on the beach in Aceh Besar near the western port of Lhoknga, apparently after a perilous open ocean voyage from southern India. It is far from clear whether the men, women and children on board are seeking asylum from persecution, or – as ... Read More »

Mr. Modi, Don’t Patent Cow Urine

BANGALORE, India — The ruling Bharatiya Janata Party is famously obsessed with the cow, which is venerated in Hindu cosmology. Most Indian states have now banned cow slaughter. The government of Punjab wants to tax alcohol to pay for shelters for stray cattle. Last year, after a Muslim man in Uttar Pradesh was lynched by a mob for eating beef, a cabinet minister from the B.J.P. demanded to know who else was “involved in the crime” — meaning the beef ... Read More »