Did a Dutch eurocrat call southern Europeans drunken womanisers?

The Economist, In-Depth

No, but that is what northern Europeans think

IN PHILIP ROTH’S “The Human Stain”, a university professor finds himself accused of racial harassment after he jokingly asks whether two black students who fail to attend class are “spooks”. (He means “ghosts”; they hear a 1950s-era derogatory term for African-Americans.) It seems like a ludicrous case of political correctness run amok, until the reader discovers that the professor is himself a black man who is passing as white, and is racked by racial anxiety and guilt. His unfortunate word choice was not an innocent mistake but a sign of subconscious angst.

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Mainstreaming South-South Cooperation in the UN System

By Ramesh Jaura

Interview with Jorge Chediek, Director of the UN Office for South Cooperation (UNOSSC)

NEW YORK (IDN) – South-South and triangular cooperation forms an integral part, complementing North-South Cooperation, of the global Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) adopted by Member States of the United Nations on September 25, 2015 to end poverty, protect the planet, and ensure prosperity for all.

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Dijsselbloem under fire after saying southern European countries wasted money on ‘alcohol and women’

Mehreen Khan, Paul McClean – Financial Times

Jeroen Dijsselbloem, the head of the eurozone’s finance ministers, has come under attack after refusing to apologise for saying southern European countries had wasted money on “drinks and women” in the run upto the eurozone crisis.

At a parliamentary hearing in Brussels on Tuesday, the Dutch policy chief – whose Labour party suffered a punishing defeat in national elections last week – was dubbed “insulting” and “vulgar” by MEPs for remarks made in an interview with German newspaper Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung.

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FBI and NSA chiefs give Trump his worst day yet

by: Edward Luce – FINANCIAL TIMES

Virtually every day since Donald Trump took office has yielded a “could not make this up” moment. But Monday’s Congressional hearings — and Mr Trump’s live tweeting on the proceedings — may have killed fiction stone dead. The heads of the FBI and the NSA all but testified that the US commander-in-chief has been plucking conspiracy theories from thin air.

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The Dutch Elections and the Looming Crisis

By George Friedman – Daily Digest

A class struggle is emerging in Euro-American society.

Geert Wilders, the nationalist candidate for prime minister of the Netherlands, lost the election on March 15. This has brought comfort to those who opposed him and his views on immigration and immigrants. It is odd that they should be comforted. Ten years ago, it would have been difficult to imagine that someone of his views would have won any seats in parliament.

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The robots are coming, your jobs are at risk

By Martin Khor*

Automation linked with digital technology is predicted to take over millions of jobs, and developing countries are most susceptible to the disruptive effects.

Last year Uber started testing driver-less cars, with human drivers inside to make corrections in case something goes wrong.

If the tests go well, Uber will presumably replace their present army of drivers with fleets of the new cars.

Some personally owned cars can already do automatic parking.   Is it a matter of time before Uber, taxi and personal vehicles will all be smart enough to bring us from A to B without our having to do anything ourselves?

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The Euroskeptic Wave Has Not Broken

Analysis – Stratfor


EU leaders who feared that elections in the Netherlands would strengthen the wave of Euroskepticism building across the Continent were soothed by the worse-than-anticipated performance of the populist Party for Freedom. But although most Dutch voters did not embrace the party, the conditions that have fostered the rise of nationalism across Europe are still in place.

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Being Anti-Russia Will Take The West Nowhere

By Jonathan Power*

LUND, Sweden (IDN-INPS) – The state of being vigorously anti the Russian president, Vladimir Putin, is becoming out of control. It is in danger of becoming pathological and self-destructive. What does the West gain in the long run if it sees nothing ahead but being anti-Russia? The West is in danger of having embarked on a journey to nowhere. Russia is not going to change significantly in the near future. The very close Putin/ Dimitri Medvedev team are going to remain in the saddle for a long time.

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Nearly Half A Million U.S. Doctors Warn That Climate Change Is Making Us Sick

By Alexander C. Kaufman* – The Huffington Post

Global warming poses an increased risk for asthma, lung illnesses, Lyme disease, Zika virus and anxiety, among other things.

One morning in July 2011, Samantha Ahdoot’s 9-year-old son, Isaac, grabbed his clarinet, trekked up the hilly road to the bus stop and set off for another day at the band camp near his home in the suburbs of Washington, D.C.

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How James Inhofe is upending the nation’s energy and environmental policies

By Juliet Eilperin and Brady Dennis - The Washington Post 

For more than a decade, Sen. James M. Inhofe has raged against the scientific consensus that humans are fueling climate change, calling it “the greatest hoax” ever perpetrated on Americans. The Oklahoma Republican has blasted the Environmental Protection Agency as an “activist organization” that has unfairly burdened everyone from farmers to fossil-fuel companies.

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Why Do Some Men Rape?

Robert J. Burrowes* 

A recent report from Equality Now titled ‘The World’s Shame: The Global Rape Epidemic’ offered a series of recommendations for strengthened laws to deter and punish sexual violence against women and girls. 

However, there is substantial evidence that legal approaches to dealing with violence in any context are ineffective. For example, the empirical evidence on threats of punishment (that is, violence) as deterrence and the infliction of punishment (that is, violence) as revenge reveals variable impact and context dependency, which is readily apparent through casual observation. There are simply too many different reasons why people break laws in different contexts. See, for example, ‘Crime Despite Punishment’.

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The White House’s troubling deconstruction of diplomacy

by Ivo Daalder* –Financial Times

As secretary of state Rex Tillerson sets off on his first trip to Asia, he is not only leaving behind the press pool that normally accompanies the chief diplomat of the US on overseas visits, but a growing Washington consensus that he is losing influence, if not control, over the direction of American foreign policy.

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APRICOT 2017: Transit is dead and content literally rules the network

 Don Sambandaraksa* - Disruptive.Asia

At Apricot 2017 last week, APNIC chief scientist Geoff Huston delivered a scathing, dystopian snapshot on how the telecoms industry has evolved from a public peer-to-peer service – where people had the right to access telecommunications – to a pack of content delivery networks where the rules are written by a handful of content owners, ignoring any concept of national sovereignty.

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The Shameful Epidemic That Is Rape

By Phil Harris

ROME (IDN) – Do legal systems around the world give women and girls true protection from rape and other forms of sexual violence? Do the victims of rape and sexual violence have access to real justice if violence is perpetrated?

The answer is ‘no’, says a report issued March 6 by Equality Now, an international human rights organisation working to protect and promote the rights of women and girls.

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