Spotlight on Geopolitics

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The 2014 annual gathering of the world’s business and financial elite in Davos was initially supposed to consider major issues of our time, such as inequality and climate change. I say consider and not debate because one cannot rationally expect a serious discussion of possible ways to tackle inequality at a conference which reunites its… » read more

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The political gridlock in Washington DC gave Francis Fukuyama the opportunity to attack as unworkable one of the pillars the American democracy, namely the priciple of separation of powers . According to one of his recent articles ( republished by Courrier International) Obamacare has no real chance of success because the American political system is… » read more

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Since the onset of the sovereign debt crisis, it has again become fashionable to explain southern Europe’s economic troubles in the light of the Mediterranean countries’s natural habitat, climate and lifestyle. The people of Greece, Spain and Italy, for example, are regularly portrayed in the popular press as less productive and laid back, in contrast… » read more

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Superficially at least, the ongoing civil war in Syria appears to highlight the West’s inability, unprecedented for decades, to put a stop to it. Adverse to direct military intervention, President Obama has even ruled out Kosovo-style punitive strikes without the endorsement of Congress. Premier David Cameron’s strident advocacy of military action against Syria has been… » read more

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A feeling of déja vu. Few exceptions apart, the opulent lifestyle and the near-total absence of a social or even a moral conscience are the hallmarks of today’s leading entrepreneurs. For them, increasing the size of their company or of their profits matters much more than the material satisfaction of the people working for them.… » read more

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Not the Clintons Again !

Joe Klein of Time Magazine has recently published an editorial about the Clintons’ renewed presidential ambitions. (“The Clintons need a restart“, Time, September 9, 2013, p.21). According to him, there is a real danger for the Democrats – not to mention for the rest of us – that coming 2016 H. Clinton might just get… » read more

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Pour la première fois en soixante ans après une récession, la reprise actuelle est très faible. C’est pas la presse de gauche cette fois, mais le très conservateur Wall Street Journal qui estime dans son numéro de 3 Août que ” la multiplication des emplois sous-payés induit une croissance anémique du niveau de vie .… » read more

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The Poverty of Economics

Although it might come as a surprise, poverty reduction over the past twenty years owes more to the policies of the governments of emerging countries than to western intellectual leadership. Contrary to what we might believe, western economic theory is sadly silent on the subject of poverty alleviation. This at least is the conclusion of… » read more

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Egypt’s “democratic” (sic !) coup d’etat is reminiscent of similar political events from pre-2002 Turkey. We can all recall the repeated interventions and coups d’etat perpetrated by the Turkish generals against democratically-elected politicians who happened to displease them, together with the killings, the tortures, arbitrary arrests and prison terms. The same scenario is now playing… » read more

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It might seem odd to some of my regular readers that I have avoided tackling the latest developments in Egypt or Syria. Alas, geopolitics also deals with spheres of influence, and I am usually writing from an European perspective on my blog. Although during George W Bush’s war on terror State Department officials have devised… » read more

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