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Archive for 29. Juli 2018

Macron and the Piranhas

Posted by hkarner - 29. Juli 2018

Bernard-Henri Lévy is one of the founders of the “Nouveaux Philosophes” (New Philosophers) movement. His books include Left in Dark Times: A Stand Against the New Barbarism, American Vertigo: Traveling America in the Footsteps of Tocqueville, and most recently, The Genius of Judaism.

Ever since Alexandre Benalla, a now-former security aide to French President Emmanuel Macron, was caught on video beating up demonstrators on May 1, France’s populists have been leading a political feeding frenzy. By focusing on Benalla, they hope to bring down another of Europe’s few remaining liberal leaders.

PARIS – The faults of Alexandre Benalla, a former top security aide to French President Emmanuel Macron who was caught on video beating up a demonstrator on May 1, are inexcusable. And it is well understood that Macron committed several errors of judgment by trusting for too long a young, inexperienced, showy bruiser who imagined himself to be a cop or a hooligan. Credit is owed to the journalists who compelled the Elysée Palace to end two and a half months of culpable silence and cut ties with Benalla.1

But beyond this scandal lies a more chilling sequence of events. Paralyzed by Macron’s steady drumbeat of important reforms, his opponents found in the Benalla scandal, at long last, a good fight to fight. But no one should revel in the fact that it was far-right leader Marine Le Pen and far-left leader Jean-Luc Mélénchon who led the attacks on Macron for his silence about his thuggish aide. There was something deeply hypocritical in the spectacle of these old warhorses, who rely so often on their own redneck guerrillas, defending the police against the “militias.”1 Den Rest des Beitrags lesen »

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Ecology: The rise and fall of bees

Posted by hkarner - 29. Juli 2018

Date: 27-07-2018
Source: The Economist

Their brilliant evolutionary strategy isn’t working so well in the modern world

Buzz: The Nature and Necessity of Bees. By Thor Hanson. Basic Books; 304 pages; $27. Icon Books; £16.99.

BEES are wasps that went vegetarian. This was a brilliant evolutionary move: they now outnumber wasps by around three to one. Instead of hunting creatures that would rather not be eaten, they turned to living things that offered themselves on a plate. Bees and flowers evolved together in a gorgeous spiral of mutual dependence. Nectar and pollen feed the bees; in return, the plants get to procreate.

Humans are beneficiaries, too. These days honey is seen as a minor treat, but for hunter-gatherers it was essential: members of the Hadza, a tribe in Tanzania, get as much as 15% of their calories from honey, not including nutrition from the larvae and pollen they also consume. Of all the foods in nature, honey is the richest in energy. “The need to feed our big, hungry brains may help explain why we crave it,” Thor Hanson explains in “Buzz”, a book of popular science at its intelligent best. Den Rest des Beitrags lesen »

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Causa Buwog: … dann wäre Grasser „mausetot“

Posted by hkarner - 29. Juli 2018

Renate Graber, 28. Juli 2018, 11:00 derstandard.at

Die Staatsanwaltschaft hat neues Buwog-Material geliefert, das Einblick ins Verhältnis zwischen Anwälten und heutigen Angeklagten gibt

Eine kleine Verschnaufpause haben die Buwog-Angeklagten gerade, die Verhandlung geht – mit halbtägiger Unterbrechung am 1. August – erst Mitte September weiter. In der jüngsten Verhandlungswoche gab es einige Aufregung: Die Staatsanwaltschaft hat Unterlagen eingebracht, die aus den 2010 durchgeführten Hausdurchsuchungen beim angeklagten Anwalt und Steuerberater Gerald Toifl bzw. in der Kanzlei stammen und vor allem Toifls E-Mail-Korrespondenz mit Kollegen und seinem Mandanten Walter Meischberger beinhalten. Etliche Verteidiger haben sofort Anträge gestellt, dass das Gericht die Unterlagen nicht verwenden möge. „Wir sind der Ansicht, dass das neue Material, die Rechtsanwaltskorrespondenz, nicht verwertet werden darf“, erklärt das der Verteidiger Toifls, Oliver Scherbaum. Anwalt Mario Schmieder, der für die Kanzleien Kerschbaum Partner und Leitner & Leitner spricht, wo Toifl einst tätig war, sieht es ähnlich. Würde man die Akten verlesen, würde das Aussageverweigerungsrecht von Berufsgeheimnisträgern (in diesem Fall des Anwalts) verletzt, sagt er. Schmieder vertritt auch im Buwog-Prozess, und zwar einen Angeklagten zum Punkt Linzer Terminal Tower. Den Rest des Beitrags lesen »

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Trump Says He ‘Opened Up Europe’ for Farmers. Europeans Disagree.

Posted by hkarner - 29. Juli 2018

Date: 28-07-2018
Source: The Wall Street Journal

The gap over what was agreed to at the White House on Wednesday indicates the perils of rifts re-emerging

A day after President Trump hailed “a breakthrough agreement” on trade with Europe, European officials said the president and his aides are exaggerating the scope of their new pact.

While Mr. Trump told an Iowa crowd Thursday that “we just opened up Europe for you farmers,” officials in Brussels later said he did no such thing.

“On agriculture, I think we’ve been very clear on that—that agriculture is out of the scope of these discussions,” Mina Andreeva, the European Commission spokeswoman, told reporters in Brussels on Friday. “We are not negotiating about agricultural products,” added Ms. Andreeva, who was part of the European delegation visiting Washington earlier this week. Den Rest des Beitrags lesen »

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