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Psycholitics & Psychonomics
I have come to the conclusion that politics are too serious a matter to be left to the politicians. DeGaulle
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Making the world a more dangerous place – the eager role of Julia Gillard

Making the world a more dangerous place – the eager role of Julia Gillard | Psycholitics & Psychonomics | Scoop.it
Gillard has returned Australia to its historic relationship with Washington, similar to that of an eastern European satellite with Moscow.

 

'The day before Barack Obama arrived in Canberra last year to declare China the new enemy of the “free world”, Gillard announced the end of Labor’s ban on uranium sales to India.'

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Why do we watch the US? - On Line Opinion - 30/8/2012

Why do we watch the US? - On Line Opinion - 30/8/2012 | Psycholitics & Psychonomics | Scoop.it
This Melbourne Cup day the first Tuesday of the month will have more riding on it than usual.

 

'They throw up fascinating characters to follow and watch. I have read endless amounts about George W. Bush's drinking habits, the McCains' marital fights, Sarah Palin's knowledge - or should that be lack of knowledge - of global geography and Obama's Australian girlfriend from his life in New York city in his 20s.

 

Although I would argue these are engaging stories, their importance is highly questionable. However, given the vanity of much American politics the stories of such potential (and actual) world leaders struggling to live up to their own ambitions is fascinating and hard to resist.'

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The GOP: Shutting that whole thing down: Todd Akin, rape, pregnancy and abortion

The GOP: Shutting that whole thing down: Todd Akin, rape, pregnancy and abortion | Psycholitics & Psychonomics | Scoop.it

'An entire political party in one of the most advanced and educated countries on earth has become a caricature of the most basal evolved insecurities about masculinity. They seem terrified of losing control over the means of reproduction and petrified of cuckoldry.'

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Paul Ryan's Father, and Al Smith's: Two American Centuries

Paul Ryan's Father, and Al Smith's: Two American Centuries | Psycholitics & Psychonomics | Scoop.it
Since the moment Mitt Romney picked Ryan as his running mate last Saturday, the death of his father has, quite rightly, been spoken of as a defining moment.

 

the case for universal healthcare and commitment to the community.....

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Controversial Ariz. Sheriff's Tactics Go On Trial : NPR

At issue is whether Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio violated the civil rights of Latino citizens and legal U.S. residents. The plaintiffs hope to prove Arpaio's department engaged in systematic racial profiling.

 

It couldn't happen in Australia?  Or could it???

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Have We Bought Enough Yet?

Have We Bought Enough Yet? | Psycholitics & Psychonomics | Scoop.it
The activist philosopher John Ralston Saul traces how we in the West became Walmart societies, with lots of stuff and not much substance.

 

'Globalism, Saul long argued, weakened nation states in the name of economics, and took away the democratic power of citizens to determine their futures.

 

"Globalism basically came to an end in about 2000, and we had five to ten years in a vacuum, before we were hit by a moving truck. The financial crisis … was not a crisis in and of itself, it came out of the earlier crisis, the failure of globalism."

 

'............. Saul mostly blames the people who filled the void [for the GFC], the people who called themselves neo-classical or neo-liberal economists and who he calls neo-conservatives. After the crisis of the 1970s, their views — advocacy of free trade, open markets, privatisation and deregulation, smaller government and a bigger role for the private sector —quickly came to dominate political thought. He calls that idea of a deregulated international marketplace, in which goods and finance travel far more easily across borders than do people, "globalism".

 

So complete was the hegemony of its advocates, says Saul, that ultimately "everyone, whether they are Labor or Liberal or social democrat or whatever … adopted their language."'

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Charts: Republican Platforms, Then and Now

Charts: Republican Platforms, Then and Now | Psycholitics & Psychonomics | Scoop.it
What's changed and what's stayed the same in 64 years of GOP party agendas.

 

GOP platform planking ............

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Ramadan in Aleppo

Ramadan in Aleppo | Psycholitics & Psychonomics | Scoop.it
After nearly 18 months and some 20,000 dead, Western and Arab governments are still debating the geopolitical pros and cons of intervening in Syria.

 

'After nearly 18 months, with over 20,000 dead and millions more directly affected, the Syrian revolution has become the foreign policy preoccupation of every Western and Arab government. Syrian President Bashar al-Assad's few remaining allies -- China, Iran, and Russia -- show no sign of acceding to the aspirations of the Syrian people. And so what started out as a movement for economic reform, and was met with great violence, has now morphed into an armed insurgency, consisting overwhelmingly of civilians aiming to end the regime through force.'

 

'Here were the Free Syrian Street Sweepers. Boys as young as 12 were at work all around the city picking up the day's trash or, in some cases, clearing rubble left after the siege.

 

One young boy told me he was on cleanup duty because for his whole life (and decades before that, too) to do anything spontaneous or willful in Syria required government permission. Another joked that the garbage bag in his hand was where he wanted Assad to go. The main boulevard was colored by minibuses emblazoned with the pre-Baathist Syrian flag -- rebranded the "independence" flag -- and pro-FSA slogans. Flashing headlights and loud horns gave the street an ecstatic energy that seemed completely at odds with the grinding and bloody civil war raging elsewhere. At a surprisingly chic hookah café with leather sofas and a plasma television, locals watched international news channels into the early hours of the morning. The strawberry smoothies were first-rate.'

 

 

 

 

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Former envoy talks Syria, chess game of diplomacy

Former envoy talks Syria, chess game of diplomacy | Psycholitics & Psychonomics | Scoop.it
There is no shortage of pundits and foreign policy experts who have offered opinions on the Syrian civil war, but few have spent as many years watching this geopolitical crossroads as closely as Edward Djerejian, a former ambassador to Syria and...

 

'I think that fundamentally what happened in Syria was the very same manifestation of what happened in Tunisia, Libya, Yemen and other Arab countries, which was a grass-roots protest movement, largely on the part of the youth of the country, who were reclaiming their individual rights: the right to a job, the opportunity to have an education, the right to housing, the right to participate in the structure of the state.'

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