"There's a lot of anger out there, there's a lot of frustration. One minute people are bored and apathetic, the next minute they're in the streets burning cars. We are seeing that already in some European cities, it's really urgent that we change the conversation in such a way that young people start to listen instead of just assuming, 'Ah, this doesn't apply to me, it's all bullshit.'"
"I am afraid that, in South Africa, we have not done with our freedom what we said we were going to do. And that makes it now the worst of times because it is a great disillusion."
The single most important step the US government can take to reverse discouraging economic trends is to mount a concerted, large-scale program directed at renewing our national infrastructure.
The interplay among many interconnected and interdependent "small units" that operate in a transparent environment and on a leveled playing field, where none is allowed to dominate, is a fundamental requirement for pragmatism, prosperity and resilience in both economics and politics. This insight is ancient to Judaism and has been highlighted by modern thinkers such as Nasim Taleb in Antifragility.
This week, the Associated Press exposed a secret program run by the U.S. Agency for International Development to create "a Twitter-like Cuban communications network" run through "secret shell companies" in order to create the false appearance of being a privately owned operation. Unbeknownst to the service's Cuban users was the fact that "American contractors were gathering their private data in the hope that it might be used for political purposes"-- specifically, to manipulate those users in order to foment dissent in Cuba and subvert its government. According to top-secret documents published today by The Intercept, this sort of operation is frequently discussed at western intelligence agencies, which have plotted ways to covertly use social media for "propaganda," "deception," "mass messaging," and "pushing stories."
There are signs that Brazil's already hyper-militarized culture of public security provision is becoming even more securitized. Nowhere are the risks more evident than in Rio de Janeiro where 4,000 federal forces were deployed this month to occupy the city´s most violent favelas, including Maré.
The rhetoric of this election and the concomitant actions of extremist political players point to the emergence of a less tolerant India. Does change in governance have to mean the exclusion from the social compact of those whose beliefs do not resonate with those of a shrill and increasingly violent majority?
For 30 years, I have advocated accepting Turkey into the European Union, once the country has fulfilled the Copenhagen Criteria: institutional stability as a guarantee of democracy, the rule of law, respect for human rights and minority rights, a functioning market economy, and finally the pledge to embrace the goals of the political, economic and monetary union. If Erdogan continues as he has over the past two years, he will not fulfill these criteria. There is no place in the European Union for this Turkey.
If there is a silver lining in Erdoğan's transformation of Turkey, in barely three years, from a model for liberalizing Arab countries to a dictatorship resembling those overthrown in Egypt and Tunisia, it is that many Turks have a clearer understanding that liberal democracy requires sustainable checks and balances. Those who participated in ending the military's role as a political guardian now recognize that Turkey needs new institutions to protect basic freedoms and ensure limited government.
The future of Europe depends on taking into consideration the needs of future generations; I have dubbed this elsewhere positive economy. And this will require in Europe the creation of instruments of patient capitalism, in the service of democracy. Today, no one takes this element into account. Will voters be able to engage politicians and help to build the political will to act for their children's sake? If they fail to do so, they will have no one to blame but themselves.
Complaints about the imposition of a "teutonic regime" and appeals for German leadership seem to contradict each other - a kind of continent-wide cognitive dissonance. In fact, the complaints and calls for leadership are mutually reinforcing. The implementation of austerity policies in the periphery has caused these countries to ask for help and request that Germany take the lead by putting more money on the European table. Nobody would deny that Germany has an interest in preserving the euro. So why shouldn't it support its partners with financial help to overcome the crisis?
A new multi-polar world has emerged over the past 30 years that has shattered the post-WW II paradigm and structure, and the near hegemony of the US whose economic, financial and military power is waning.
A generation of frustrated citizens and protest voters is calling the whole notion of European integration into question. The abstract idea of "power or oblivion" is as appealing to a 22-year-old unemployed in Greece as a look into the crystal ball of a fortune teller. Europe needs to offer more than its lofty tales of peace and prosperity. This is the time to act, not to deliver empty promises.
In the run up to the European parliamentary elections next month, anti-Europe populists, such as Marine Le Pen's National Front in France, have been fanning the nationalist flames by telling voters that two leading left-of center Nobel laureates in economics -- Amartya Sen and Joe Stiglitz -- oppose a more united Europe.
Yes, the Maidan protesters in Kiev's Independence Square were heroes, but the true fight begins now: the fight for what the new Ukraine will be. And this fight will be much tougher than the fight against Putin's intervention. The question is not if Ukraine is worthy of Europe, good enough to enter the EU -- but if today's Europe is worthy of the deepest aspirations of the Ukrainians. If Ukraine ends up as a mixture of ethnic fundamentalism and liberal capitalism, with oligarchs pulling the strings, it will be as European as Russia (or Hungary) is today.
There were no representatives from Syria, Iraq or North Korea at Nelson Mandela's memorial. This is not just about paying respects, this is about the fate of our global community.
Provocation, intimidation and propaganda are intended to create a pretext which is followed by invasion and occupation. That's the pattern that Stalin made notorious, just as Hitler had done when plotting his invasions around Europe. Camouflage with no insignias and masks are elements peculiar to Putin himself. They reveal the mindset of a man who was, after all, a KGB colonel skilled in subterfuge.
You might think the 1 percent pays a much higher tax rate than everyone else. But you'd be wrong. Many millionaires pay a lower federal tax rate than many middle-class Americans.
April 1st marked the 50th anniversary of the military coup that installed a 21-year long dictatorship in Brazil. Along with the repressive practices, censorship, torture, extermination and disappearance of oppositors, the military regime was responsible for an institutional architecture that remains in some areas of Brazilian society. One of the most flagrant legacy of the dictatorship is the widespread practice of police abuse - Brazilian Police is responsible for 2,000 deaths every year according to Amnesty International.