News from Around the Globe, October 27, 2012
A collection of current news stories from around the world.
Lithuania ….revolt over austerity measures lead to election victories for leftist parties.
A second round of voting takes place on Sunday, and it appears that voters in Lithuania will give the progressive parties the gains they need to control the nation’s parliament. As most European countries, Lithuania is struggling to recover from the economic collapse of 2008-2009. Austerity measures have not helped the economically struggling country of 3 million people and now the voters are throwing out the conservative party in favor of progressive politicians. Lithuania is one of the poorest of all European countries and has an official unemployment rate of more than 13%. The voters will also be deciding on the fate of a proposed nuclear power plant. In 2009 Lithuania shut down the country’s Soviet built nuclear power plant. This led to an increase in energy as the country was forced to import more gas and electricity from neighboring Russia. Naturally, Russia took the opportunity to charge exorbitant rates to its former satellite. Lithuania is just one more example of the devastation caused by the criminal activities of a completely unregulated financial industry.
Spain ….the official unemployment rate rises above 25% for first time in history.
The Spanish economy is continuing to crumble as the country deals with its second recession in less than 3 years. The official unemployment climbed above 25% for the first time in the nation’s history as nearly 800 thousand jobs were lost in the last 12 months. The government’s austerity measures resulted in the loss of nearly 50 thousand public sector jobs in the last quarter. The jobless rate for those under the age of 25 is almost 53%. Does anyone really believe that austerity is the path to prosperity?
Expect to see more stories like this from Spain. A 53 year old man facing eviction attempts to commit suicide by jumping off of his balcony.
A 54 year old man facing eviction commits suicide by hanging himself. His brother found his lifeless body. More than 400 thousand people across Spain are facing eviction.
Botswana.....income inequity exceeds South Africa’s.
One of the benefits of reading foreign newspapers is that it provides insight as to how other countries view the Western world. This article has a great description of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) as the world’s Repo Man. The portrait of the IMF’s Christine Lagarde is also revealing. Botswana borders South Africa and has a history of being one of the most stable governments in all of Africa. This article takes great issue with the findings of the IMF and goes further to explain the IMF’s agenda in releasing their new income inequity findings. I highly recommend that everyone take the time to read this article. Very insightful analysis and highly entertaining.
Australia.....Violent Femmes musician Brian Ritchie becomes Australian Citizen.
I’m sure that everyone reading has at least one record by the seminal 80s band, the Violent Femmes. The band’s bassist Brian Ritchie is now a citizen of Australia and he appears to be revitalizing the artistic community in his Tasmanian home. Australia has remarkably strict emigration policies which are generally designed to exclude people of color and people without money. However, I do congratulate Mr. Ritchie on his ability to leave the Midwest winters far behind him.
From Bahrain….four men are facing trial for their tweets against the king.
Bahrain has been a country in turmoil for the last two years. The Shia majority has been agitating for more democratic reforms while the Sunni leadership has been clamping down on the protests. The unrest shows no sign of abating soon. The reform movement in the Middle East is a threat to the established world order and is therefore a movement that will face serious opposition from the Western World as well their own governments.
Government forces lay siege to a Shiite village.
The above Iranian article provides some background on the protests in Bahrain. Not an unbiased article, however, very informative.
From Japan….Japan embraces another American holiday.
Japan has a long history of embracing American culture. Christmas is not a national holiday, however, because of a successful commercialization campaign; the holiday’s popularity grows every year. Now, Japan is embracing one of the stranger American holidays: Halloween. American exceptionalism at its finest.