Breaking News

Recent Posts

Are we causing longer, more intense bushfire seasons?

Bernin 2b

Opinion If you think bushfires are becoming both more common and more fierce, you’re right. And the science says it’s not just because of natural climate variations, writes John Connor. ABC – The DRUM – By John Connor Over summer we have yet again witnessed frightening, destructive bushfires in South Australia and Western Australia. Now, in Tasmania, we face the global tragedy of bushfires continuing to burn in extremely vulnerable world heritage alpine old growth forests, incinerating 1,000-year-old trees. Ancient ecosystems ... Read More »

Republican debate: ‘I’d bring back a hell of a lot worse than waterboarding,’ says Donald Trump

Geng 1a

Trump booed, Rubio roughed up by rivals Awkward start to debate: candidates fail to respond to name call WASHINGTON: Seven years after the United States banned waterboarding as an interrogation tactic, two Republican presidential candidates say they would revive its use. The Sydney Morning Herald – Ginger Gibson * One of them, billionaire businessman Donald Trump, would go even further. “I would bring back waterboarding and I’d bring back a hell of a lot worse than waterboarding,” Trump said during Saturday night’s ... Read More »

American Aggression Against China

Ektok 1a

On January 30th the United States committed a deliberate act of aggression against China when it sent the guided missile destroyer USS Curtis Wilbur within the 12 nautical mile territorial limit of one of the Paracel Islands in the South China Sea. New Eastern Outlook – Author: Christopher Black The islands are claimed historically by China, though Vietnam also has filed claims to the islands under the Law of the Sea Convention. The Americans state that Taiwan also claims the islands ... Read More »

Capital flight, not debt, could shock China’s economy: BTIM’s Gor warns

Vim 2b

Capital outflows leading to the exhaustion of China’s foreign exchange reserves are a bigger trigger for a hard landing in the Chinese economy than its enormous pile of debt, warns one of Australia’s most prominent fund managers. WAtoday – Vesna Poljak, Senior Reporter China reported a lower-than-expected $US100 billion drop in the value of its foreign exchange reserves on Sunday, reducing its stockpile to $US3.23 trillion last month, the lowest level since May 2012, according to central bank figures. That rate of depletion is ... Read More »

China’s currency reserves plunged in January

US & Chinese notes 1a money LLLL

China’s foreign currency reserves plunged by $99.5bn in January, the People’s Bank of China reported. BBC China has been running down its vast foreign currency reserves in an attempt to boost the value of its own currency and stem a flow of funds overseas. At $3.23 trillion, China still has the world’s biggest reserve of foreign currency holdings. But that has declined by $420bn over six months and stands at the lowest level since May 2012. “While the remaining reserves ... Read More »

Progress in the global war on poverty

Xau 3c

Almost unnoticed, the world has reduced poverty, increased incomes, and improved health more than at any time in history. The Christian Science Monitor – By Steven Radelet, Contributor Washington — The headlines on any given day suggest a world under siege. War. Terrorism. Refugees. Disease. Recession. Famine. Climate change. But beneath these often very real problems, something remarkable has been happening, something on a more epochal level that has gone almost completely unnoticed. Global poverty has fallen faster during the past ... Read More »

Mathematics should be compulsory during all of high school, ADMA says

Lau 5e

Mathematics should be compulsory during all of high school to help address a skills gap in analytics in the marketing industry, according to Association of Data-driven Marketing and Advertising chief executive Jodie Sangster. Brisbane Times – Max Mason, Media Reporter Ms Sangster, who also represents the Institute of Analytics Professionals of Australia (IAPA), said there has been constant feedback from members who are having problems filling jobs with people who have the right skill sets in data and marketing. “The outcome ... Read More »

Ecuador conveys ‘unease’ over use of force by Turkish president’s guards

Eme 1a

Ecuador’s Foreign Ministry has conveyed its “unease” over the use of force against its citizens by guards of Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan during a demonstration in the capital of Quito, Turkish officials have confirmed. Hurriyet – Emine Kart – ANKARA The incident subject to Ecuador’s diplomatic moves took place on Feb. 5 as a group of demonstrators protested Turkey’s ongoing military operations against the outlawedKurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) as Erdoğan was speaking at the National Higher Studies Institute in Quito. ... Read More »

Why we’re not safe from Grexit yet

Thox 1a

Letter From Athens Between economic recovery and an escalating migration crisis, Greece faces a tumultuous year ahead. Politico – By Megan Greene ATHENS — A team of analysts from one of the main credit rating agencies smiled condescendingly across a boardroom table one recent afternoon, when asked about the likelihood of a Greek exit from the euro. It was clear they dismissed the idea. There is virtually no chance of Greece leaving the eurozone, they assured me. This is not the first ... Read More »

Academia in Turkey ‘reminds me of Ceauşescu’s Romania’, says exiled scholar

AgSo 1a sunset LLLL

Political theorist Andrei Stavilă explains how a comment on a friend’s Facebook page led to exit from Turkish university Times Higher Education By Jack Grove Twitter: @jgro_the A politics lecturer has alleged that he was forced to resign from a Turkish university after making a Facebook comment criticising government efforts to intimidate and silence academics. Andrei Stavilă had recently been informed that his one-year contract at Muğla Sıtkı Koçman University, in eastern Turkey, would be renewed for two more years ... Read More »

Pope Francis set for historic meeting with leader of Russian Orthodox Church

Frances 3b

Vatican City: Pope Francis will make a surprise trip to Cuba on February 12 for a historic meeting with the leader of the Russian Orthodox Church, the first meeting between a pope and the Russian patriarch since the Eastern and Western branches of Christianity split nearly 1000 years ago, the Vatican announced Friday. The Sydney Morning Herald * Elisabetta Povoledo * For Pope Francis, the meeting is the result of delicate and sustained diplomacy, some of which began decades ago under ... Read More »

Victoria will take the 267 asylum seekers, Daniel Andrews tells Malcolm Turnbull

Wait 1a

Andrews wrote to the prime minister urging him to take action and keep a group of Australian-born asylum seeker children and their families in Australia The Guardian – Ben Doherty @bendohertycorro The 267 asylum seekers whose removal to Nauru was cleared by a controversial high court ruling are welcome to stay in Victoria, the state’s premier Daniel Andrews has said. Andrews wrote to the Malcolm Turnbull on Saturday offering that the group – which includes 37 babies born in Australia to asylum ... Read More »

Zimbabwe’s Robert Mugabe declares drought disaster

Cow starving 1a Reuters LLLL

Zimbabwe’s President Robert Mugabe has declared a state of disaster in rural parts of the country hit by a drought. BBC  An estimated 2.4 million people are now in need of food aid, more than a quarter of the population. The announcement comes days after the EU urged Mr Mugabe to declare a state of disaster so donors can raise money quickly to provide food aid. The government has urged Zimbabweans not to panic, as it is importing maize from ... Read More »