Category: Daily

In censoring a ‘Queer Museum,’ Brazil edges closer to authoritarianism

An art show has become Brazil’s latest political battleground. For those who didn’t get to see the 270 LGBTQ-themed works that comprise “Queer Museum,” good luck: You may never see them. The exhibition, until recently on display at the Santander...

/ September 22, 2017
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“I don’t want the last car made in Germany to end up in a museum”

LAST week I caught up with Cem Özdemir, lead candidate of Germany's Green Party, to talk about his country’s future. The latest polls put his party at about 8%. Mr Özdemir’s perspective matters, for two reasons.First, the polls suggest that...

/ September 21, 2017
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Twin earthquakes expose Mexico’s deep inequality

Early in the morning on Sept. 16, 1810, priest Miguel Hidalgo y Costilla rang the bell of his church in the small town of Dolores, near Guanajuato, Mexico. His parishioners gathered round, and he urged them to revolt against Spain’s...

/ September 20, 2017
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Can the world’s megacities survive the digital age?

Today, megacities have become synonymous with economic growth. In both developing and developed countries, cities with populations of 10 million or more account for one-third to one-half of their gross domestic product. Many analysts and policymakers think this trend is...

/ September 19, 2017
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London train bombing: Why is Europe seeing so many terrorist attacks?

The Sept. 15 terrorist bombing in a crowded London subway station – which injured at least 30 passengers but caused no deaths – was the latest in a string of terrorist attacks in Western Europe in recent years. In mid-August,...

/ September 19, 2017
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German politics is about to tip rightwards

A CERTAIN sort of Anglo-Saxon commentator is permanently convinced that Germany is about to fall apart. Witness those American shock jocks ranting about no-go zones in cities whose names they would struggle to spell, let alone find on a map....

/ September 17, 2017
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Commuting by subway? What you need to know about air quality

Four more major Indian cities will soon have their own metro lines, the country’s government has announced. On the other side of the Himalayas, Shanghai is building its 15th subway line, set to open in 2020, adding 38.5 km and 32 stations...

/ September 15, 2017
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This old Catholic ritual is giving Brazil’s economy a small boost, one Virgin Mary statuette at a time

Brazilians are moving away from Catholicism. Today, fewer than 50 percent of Brazilians identify as Roman Catholic, down from 92 percent in 1970. But after 500 years in South America, the Catholic Church remains deeply enmeshed Brazil’s economy and society....

/ September 13, 2017
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Colombia’s FARC rebels have rebranded as a political party – now they need a leader

Ever since Colombia signed its fragile, contested peace agreement with the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC) in November 2016, the big question has been: What will this no-longer-armed insurgency do next? On Aug. 28, the FARC made its official...

/ September 12, 2017
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Rohingya genocide: the world can’t help until Myanmar changes its ways

After two weeks of extreme violence in Myanmar’s Rakhine state, where at least 400 people have been killed and 270,000 Rohingyas have fled their homes, the country’s de facto leader, Nobel laureate Aung San Suu Kyi, finally spoke up to...

/ September 11, 2017
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Could Trump be holding Dreamers hostage to make Mexico pay for his border wall?

Fulfilling one of United States president Donald Trump’s campaign promises, US Attorney General Jeff Sessions recently announced the end of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) programme. The initiative, launched by former president Barack Obama in 2012, allows people...

/ September 9, 2017
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The three pillars of Merkelism

ANGELA MERKEL is the longest-serving head of government in the EU. When she became chancellor, in 2005, her international counterparts were George W Bush, Tony Blair and Jacques Chirac. She became leader of the CDU during the Clinton administration. Yet...

/ September 9, 2017
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‘Triple talaq’ abolition is only the start of a larger campaign for gender justice in India

The egregious practice that some Muslim men employ to divorce their wives instantaneously and without their consent, merely by uttering the word talaq (divorce) three times, has finally been declared unconstitutional and illegal by the Indian Supreme Court. The country’s...

/ September 7, 2017
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Ecuador’s school food is bad for kids — and the environment

Each year, malnutrition costs Ecuador the equivalent of 4.3% of its gross domestic product, as the resulting health burden and reduced potential productivity places an economic toll on society. That was the unsettling conclusion of the World Food Programme’s 2017...

/ September 7, 2017
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India’s ‘instant divorce’ ban: the end result or the first step in reforming Islamic law?

“Un-Islamic, arbitrary, unconstitutional.” That was the judgement of the Indian Supreme Court as it announced a ban on the contentious practice of instant “triple-talaq”. Triple-talaq is a form of Islamic divorce which allows a husband to dissolve his marriage instantly...

/ September 6, 2017
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China’s ‘sponge cities’ aim to re-use 70% of rainwater – here’s how

Asian cities are struggling to accommodate rapid urban migration, and development is encroaching on flood-prone areas. Recent flooding in Mumbai was blamed in part on unregulated developmentof wetlands, while hastily built urban areas are being affected by flooding across India,...

/ September 5, 2017
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As Rohingyas flee Myanmar, India needs to drop religious criteria in its refugee law

More than 90,000 Rohingyas, victims of a new surge of violence in Myanmar, are fleeing the country and pouring into Bangladesh, while 30,000 people are still trapped near the border. At the same time, the government of the prime minister...

/ September 5, 2017
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Does being religious or spiritual make you more ethical at work?

Can religion and spirituality promote ethical behaviour in the workplace? It’s a contentious issue, but our research comprising interviews with forty Indian top level executives suggests it might. We found that virtues embedded within the various traditions of religion and...

/ September 5, 2017
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Caught between police and gangs, Rio de Janeiro residents are dying in the line of fire

In Rio de Janeiro, where murder rates this year have soared to their highest levels in a decade, violence stalks even the youngest residents. In July an unborn child was struck by a stray bullet, which severely damaged his spine...

/ September 4, 2017
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Germany’s TV debate was a missed opportunity

PERHAPS the problem was the format. Germany’s main television broadcasters had proposed livening up the country’s TV debate by introducing a studio audience and splitting the four (four!) presenters into two shifts. But Angela Merkel said no. The chancellor also...

/ September 4, 2017