Showing posts from July 18, 2017

Today's Trumpery


Which countries are the most (and least) committed to reducing inequality?

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[The UK’s lack of investment in education and low tax rates put it 17th in a new Oxfam inequality index – which ranks Sweden top out of 152 countries, and Nigeria bottom. Trump’s tax proposal would push US below Greece *RON*]
Niamh McIntyre, The Guardian, 17 July 2017
The UK’s lack of investment in education and relatively low tax rates have created a highly unequal society in which the poor are “often unable to cover living costs”, according to a new report that assesses 152 countries for their commitment to reducing inequality levels.

Researchers at Oxfam and Development Finance International have spent a year investigating 18 indicators across three policy areas that have a key impact on levels of inequality: taxation, social spending on sectors such as health, welfare and education, and labour rights.

Britain is ranked only 109th for the proportion of budget it spends on education – just below Kazakhstan and Cambodia. In 2014, the UK government…

LINKEDIN SURVEY: Wall Streeters are worried that robots are going to steal their jobs

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[Sharks eat their young: too bad, so sad. *RON*]
Frank Chaparro, Business Insider, 17 July 2017
The robots are coming for our jobs, and Wall Street is getting a little nervous.

A recent survey of 1000 financial professionals conducted by LinkedIn, the networking site, found that 25% of Wall Streeters are worried their job could be jeopardized by automation. Retail bankers are the most fearful with a third of respondents saying they view automation as a threat,according to a report highlighting the survey's results.

It stands to reason that some folks are nervous, as Wall Street firms look to automate their infrastructure to cut jobs.

As one survey respondent frankly put it, "automation will continue to reduce the number of jobs in finance."

Citigroup is staffing up for the automation revolution. The New York-based financial services giant has plastered online jobs boards advertising roles for a new automation center that will deploy…

Tory MP Cheryl Gallant slams media for 'fake news' around Omar Khadr

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[You'll see a lot of this kind of thing in the press, and hear these opinions voiced by people around you. Do yourself a favour and read this Facebook posting before launching into any discussions on this subject. *RON*]

Ottawa Citizen, 18 July 2017
Conservative MP Cheryl Gallant is accusing media outlets, including seemingly the Citizen, of putting out “fake news” in regards to their coverage of the federal government’s $10.5-million settlement with Omar Khadr.

“Whether it’s the Toronto Star, CBC, Globe and Mail, CTV or even the National Post, editorialists and columnists have been tripping over themselves in a rush to justify Justin’s payout to Khadr,” Gallant said, in a video posted to her Facebook page last week, against a backdrop that included media signs including the Ottawa Citizen logo.

Gallant, the MP for Renfrew–Nipissing–Pembroke, made the statement in a 10-minute news-style segment called “Gallant Night News” or GNN.

She introduced…

Spanish FA president Ángel María Villar Llona arrested on corruption charges

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[Villar Llona and four others held after raid on RFEF headquarters. Arrests follow investigation into finances of Spanish federations. The most corrupt sport in the world. If you have Netflix, watch Planet FIFA. Alternately, watch the BBC documentary, FIFA's Dirty Secrets here. *RON*]
Associated Press, The Guardian, 18 July 2017
Police in Spain say they have arrested Ángel María Villar Llona, the president of Spain’s football association, Real Federación Española de Fútbol (RFEF).

Villar Llona, who is also a senior vice-president at Fifa and Uefa, was arrested on Tuesday morning along with his son and three other federation executives as part of an anti-corruption investigation.

Spain’s Guardia Civil said in a statement on Tuesday that Villar Llona, his son Gorka, and three other football officials were detained while raids were carried out at the federation headquarters in Madrid.

Police said the other three men who were arrested were Juan Pad…

Now we find out the real cost of austerity – our lives cut short

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[Ideologically driven cuts have almost certainly halted a rise in life expectancy. "Our social order is bankrupt. We don’t just need a new government, we need a new way to organise society." *RON*]

Owen Jones, The Guardian, 18 July 2017
An ideologically driven programme of cuts is almost certainly robbing us of life. Consistently rising life expectancy should be something we all take for granted. The UK, after all, is one of the wealthiest societies that has ever existed in human history. There are continuing dramatic improvements in medicine and technology. And yet new research by an ex-government adviser, Sir Michael Marmot, suggests that the rise in life expectancy – a constant trend for a hundred years – has stalled since 2010. What happened that year, exactly? Was that not when David Cameron, George Osborne and their Lib Dem stooges began slashing public services with a false economic pretext?
No, it’s not that life expectancy is d…