WASHINGTON, Aug 30 (Reuters) – President Barack Obama on Monday will officially restore Denali as the name of North America’s tallest mountain, ending a 40-year battle over what to call the peak that has been known as Mount McKinley.The symbolic gesture comes at the beginning of a three-day trip to Alaska where Obama hopes to build support for his efforts to address climate change during his remaining 16 months in office.The peak was named Mount McKinley in 1896 after a gold prospector exploring the region heard that Ohioan William McKinley, a champion of the gold standard, had won the Republican nomination for president.
What did the men who would be president talk about during last week’s prime-time Republican debate? Well, there were 19 references to God, while the economy rated only 10 mentions. Republicans in Congress have voted dozens of times to repeal all or part of Obamacare, but the candidates only named President Obama’s signature policy nine times over the course of two hours. And energy, another erstwhile G.O.P. favorite, came up only four times.
China has become a victim of its own incredible success. On paper, it remains an economic miracle, but the rapid transformation has come at a cost that could spell serious trouble for Australia, writes Ian Verrender.The air stings in Shanghai. On a normal day, great billowing clouds of it swirl through the city’s glass and steel canyons reducing visibility to less than 100 metres.
The real-life zombie that returned to horrify Australians this week was not Labor’s carbon tax or even a triple-whammy version of the walking dead as Prime Minister Tony Abbott claimed. Rather it was the terrible spectre of cheap and nasty politics over good policy.
Not that politics over policy ever really died under the Abbott government, despite its early claims to be reformist and serious about tackling the nation’s pressing problems.
The United States and five other world powers secured a deal with Iran on Tuesday morning to curtail its ability to build a nuclear weapon in return for lifting crippling economic sanctions, overcoming decades of distrust and concluding nearly two years of tense negotiations that were capped by a marathon diplomatic finale that lasted 18 days.The 109-page agreement aims to remove a threat to regional stability in the Middle East, seeking to solve one of the region’s most enduring problems by drawing Iran into greater international cooperation.
Nowadays, with the global economy undergoing fundamental transformation, workers worldwide are coming under significant pressure. Particularly in developed economies, social policies must adjust to provide the support that lower-income groups need, while encouraging growth and advancing wellbeing.
The pressure has been unrelenting and inescapable. In the United States, real (inflation-adjusted) compensation for men with only a high school diploma fell by 21% from 1979 to 2013. In much of Europe, which provides stronger wage protection, unemployment has soared, especially since the euro crisis began in 2008. Germany and some Northern European countries remain an exception, although the German labor market contains a large low-wage, mini-jobs segment.
Driving these trends is the changing nature of work. For starters, services have been gaining ground worldwide, especially in developed economies. From 1970 to 2012, the GDP share of services in the OECD countries increased from 53% to 71%.
Benjamin Netanyahu dissolved his government last November to remove two obstacles. The first, much reported beyond Israel, was opposition by centrists within his government, including Yair Lapid and Tzipi Livni, to the “Jewish nation” bill, which would have constrained the Supreme Court’s ability to protect Arab citizens’ rights. The second—less noticed but perhaps more consequential—was a bill advanced in the Knesset to prohibit any major newspaper from being distributed for free. The obvious target of the legislation was Sheldon Adelson’s Israel Hayom, a free tabloid that’s become Israel’s most widely circulated newspaper. Adelson was reported to have lost as much as three million dollars a month on it—simply, it seems, to boost Netanyahu and his Likud Party. The day it became clear that the newspaper bill, supported by Lapid and Livni, would get a Knesset majority, Netanyahu fired his dissident ministers and called for new elections.
Helen Zille’s strategy was to stay on as the leader of the Democratic Alliance (DA), South Africa’s largest opposition party, until she had built up a pool of black leaders, one of whom could take over from her. She achieved her goal with the election of Mmusi Maimane as DA leader.
Maimane’s election also signifies that the DA has socialised its members – who are overwhelmingly white and coloured with former members of the old National Party outnumbering those of the old Progressive Federal Party – into accepting that they will follow a mostly black leadership at the top for the foreseeable future.
Last month, Saudi Arabia abruptly cut ties with Sweden, recalling its ambassador and announcing that it would issue no new visas to Swedish business travelers. The cause, according to Saudi Arabia, was some remarks made by Margot Wallström, the foreign minister of Sweden.
Wallström, a sixty-year-old Social Democrat who has spent almost her entire career in politics, was appointed foreign minister last fall, when Prime Minister Stefan Löfven took office.
At the end of this month, the Supreme Court will reckon with execution by lethal injection in Glossip v. Gross, the case of Oklahoma death-row inmates who are challenging the three-drug protocol that the state has chosen to carry out death sentences.