Saturday, 18 October 2008

Magazines : Weekend 17-19th October

Europe and the financial crisis : The end of the beginning? The Economist (en)
German education : Bottom of the form. The Economist (en)
The Caucasus : After the war . The Economist (en)

A deep recession would be a big challenge for the European Union. Charlemagne, The Economist (en)
" ... FEW governments enjoy recessions. But the looming one poses a special threat to the European Union—a group of countries held together by overlapping pacts of solidarity. In the EU, solidarity is guaranteed by law, rhetoric and plenty of money. Take away the money, and it can start to look awfully fragile ...
... It is a cliché of European politics that the EU achieves its greatest advances in times of crisis. That seems optimistic this time. Generosity and enlightened self-interest are at the heart of the European project. But neither today’s enlarged EU nor Europe’s single currency has been through a really deep recession: European solidarity is facing its severest test. "

No Sex With Humans for Euro-Politicians. Elaib Harvey, The Brussels Journal (en)
" ... In a letter, 37 MEPs asked Hans-Gert Pöttering, the President of the European Parliament, to curtail the “encouragement of prostitution by members of the EU Parliament”. Every hotel, which is used by the 785 MEPs and their staff on business trips, should give a “guarantee statement” that denies access for prostitutes to the rooms. Furthermore, MEPs should be banned from welcoming prostitutes in their hotel rooms .."

Barroso and Sarkozy plead for permanent EU presidency. Elitsa Vucheva, EUObserver (en)
" ... "We need a president of the Council [the institution representing EU member states] that does not change every six months," Mr Barroso told journalists at the end of an EU leaders' meeting in Brussels on Thursday (16 October). "To lead [EU] member states, we need a very strong presidency." ...
... (Sarkozy)"It is not because one is not president of the Council that one can say nothing in Europe. France will continue to say things [after its presidency ends on 31 December]. We will perhaps still have the right, no?" he said. ..."

EU-15 mostly on track to meet Kyoto targets. Leigh Phillips, EUObserver (en)
" ... The EU-15 as a whole, excluding member states that joined in 2004 and 2007, should meet its collective target of cutting greenhouse gas emissions by eight percent for the period 2008-2012 compared with 1990, the Kyoto agreement's baseline year ...
... The EEA figures show that as of 2006, four EU-15 Member States - France, Greece, Sweden and the UK - had already reached a level below their Kyoto target ...
... Eight additional other states - Austria, Belgium, Finland, Germany, Ireland, Luxembourg, the Netherlands and Portugal - project that they will achieve their targets in the future ... While Denmark, Italy and Spain are behind ..."

Teaching. One hell of a profession . Cafe Babel (en)
" 6.25 million of them in Europe are shaping future generations. Their work conditions, like their salaries, vary inevitably from one country to another, whilst training to become a teacher is as trying as ever. Are young people still feeling called by the calling?

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