Issues / Democracy & Governance

The climate conference in Durban has led some observers to conclude that developed countries are engaged in a form of apartheid against the rest of the world. But Nnimmo Bassey hopes negotiators will heed the voices of the people.
Despite repeated expressions of support by President Barack Obama for democratic change during the "Arab Spring", the United States remains widely distrusted in the region, according to a major new survey of public opinion in five Arab countries released here Monday.
Colombia, traditionally Washington's best ally in the region, is cozying up to Brazil and building a solid commercial, financial and political network with its neighbor while Washington becomes more and more isolated as a result of the geopolitical restructuring taking place globally and regionally.
Sometimes, just when you least expect it, symbolism steps right up and coldcocks you. So how about this headline for - in the spirit of our last president - ushering America's withdrawal from Iraq right over the nearest symbolic cliff: "U.S. empties biggest Iraq base, takes Saddam's toilet." They're talking about Victory Base, formerly - again in the spirit of thoroughly malevolent symbolism - Camp Victory, the enormous American military base that sits at the edge of Baghdad International Airport and that we were never going to leave.
The problem here is "governance failure." Or maybe we should just call it "decadence." The United States may at this point be so weakened by rot and ideology that it is unable even to act in its own interests, let alone the interests of its people, let alone the interests of humanity as a whole.

On Seeds

Funding for agricultural development - some US$7.7 billion worth - would be directed in large part to genetically modified crop research. In other words, food aid policy for the first time mandates the use of genetic modification technologies.
The nuclear threat, organizers say, extends beyond Tohoku, even beyond Japan. And indeed, this is the message that has been heard around the world, as the anti-nuke protest and politics were staged with specific reference to Fukushima (sadly, rarely with respect to the wider Tohoku region).
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