Europe

Germany at Thirty

30 September 2020 I have just spent two weeks driving around Germany interviewing people (mostly climate scientists, since you ask), and I have come to the conclusion that it is the best-run – and quite possibly just the best – major country in the world right now. Some small countries are absolute jewels, of course, …

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Of Plagues and Genocides

8 July 2020 Last Sunday in the city of Baltimore, they tore down a statue of Christopher Columbus and threw it into the harbour. According to the Baltimore Sun, the protesters who yanked it down with ropes were dedicated to removing statues “honoring white supremacists, owners of enslaved people, perpetrators of genocide, and colonizers.” We …

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Four-Day Work Week

As countries in Europe and North America emerge from lock-down and start trying to rebuild their devastated economies, the great concern is jobs. Unemployment in the US and Canada is over 13%, a post-Second World War high. If it weren’t for subsidies that keep up to a fifth of the working population in paid ‘furloughs’ …

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Two Performances

On Monday we were treated to two pieces of public performance art, one by Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu and the other by Mahmoud Abbas, the closest thing the Palestinians have to an agreed national leader (which is not very close). Both performances were beyond bizarre, and taken together they demonstrate how politicians whose lives …

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