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Not really sure where to post this but I've been wanting a place to post articles that don't really fit into any existing threads that might not warrant their own threads. So discuss any world news here!

 

Lee Kwan Yew is dead

 

Dude pretty much created the Singapore most Westerners are acquainted with. Obviously a very controversial figure but it's weird to see him pass away. Singapore is a major financial center and generally has a pretty good justice system with the exception of free speech.

 

Mr. Lee then held senior advisory posts in the cabinets of two of his successors, including his eldest son, until he resigned in May 2011. In all, he spent 52 years in government, presiding over Singapore’s rise as one of the globe’s leading financial centers and busiest ports, with GDP per capita ranked third in the world. Even after relinquishing power, he maintained outsize influence, sought for his counsel on matters ranging from how to achieve political stability and economic growth to ways of dealing with China.

 

His bluntness sometimes got him into trouble, notably when he lectured other countries publicly or when his private comments to U.S. officials became public. According to a U.S. diplomatic cable released by the anti-privacy group WikiLeaks, Mr. Lee in 2007 said dealing with Burma’s military junta was like “talking to dead people.” In 2009, in another leaked cable, he apparently called North Korean officials “psychopathic types, with a ‘flabby old chap’ for a leader who prances around stadiums seeking adulation.”

 

Scarred by deadly race riots that rocked Singapore in the 1960s, Mr. Lee took far-reaching steps to tamp down racial and religious tensions among the teeming island state’s Chinese, Malay and Indian populations. He imposed integration, instituting strict rules to ensure that Singaporeans of different backgrounds lived, studied and worked together.

 

A British-educated lawyer by training, Mr. Lee ran a government that was widely regarded as farsighted, honest and efficient, but it also could be overbearing and patronizing. The result was a tidy, law-abiding country, but one that visitors often described as regimented, sterile and dull.

Critics also charged that Mr. Lee’s administration permitted detention without charge or trial, censored the press, harassed political opponents and turned a blind eye to police mistreatment of suspects.

 

Some Singaporeans complained that the avowedly “paternalistic” government treated them like children, forbidding private citizens to own home satellite dishes, fining and humiliating people caught failing to flush public toilets, and even imposing a nationwide ban on chewing gum.

When a BBC reporter once suggested to him that allowing people to chew gum could help spur creativity, Mr. Lee retorted: “If you can’t think because you can’t chew, try a banana.”

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Wikileaks has published the updated text of the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement.  Which is the international agreement on copyright law that's being developed in secret and contains some really shitty provisions.

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Yep, looks like it's going to pass 60-65% yes.

 

There was a referendum held at the same time on reducing the minimum age of the President (sort of a ceremonial head of state, like the Queen in the UK but elected) to 21 from 35.  It looks like it'll be rejected with a two-thirds majority.  But then there was little campaigning about this, whereas for equal marriage there were years of anticipation with every party in the Dáil (the elected lower house) in support.

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China's President Faces Rare Backlash

 

The recent stock market crash has lead to sharp criticisms across the board of Xi's leadership style. I think that's interesting because since he took power in 2013, Xi has largely been gaining momentum and building a significant power base. This is his first major setback as a political leader. This could simply be a temporary setback for him or a continuing trend across the next few years. Either way I think the political implications for this are very interesting.

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So this is pretty big.

Six world powers and Iran have agreed a breakthrough deal to wind back the country’s progress towards building a nuclear bomb in exchange for a sweeping reversal of international economic sanctions, bringing to a close nearly a decade of isolation for the Islamic republic.

Details of the deal, including the crucial timing and scope of sanctions relief for Iran and the range of access international nuclear inspectors will be granted over Iran’s sensitive nuclear sites, are expected to be announced later on Tuesday.

Attention will now turn to Washington and Tehran, where hardliners have been trying to scupper the talks for months. In the US, Congress will have two months to scrutinise the agreement and then vote on whether it should be upheld.

In Iran, the majlis, the parliament, will also vote on the text but it does not have a fixed timetable for doing so.

eeeezypeezy likes this

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I was watching the Tonight Show and when Fallon brought up the Trump / El Chappo thing .. everyone started cheering at El Chappo's name and Fallon nor Higgins nor anyone at the show knew what to do so they nervously laughed and reiterated who El Chappo was "comically". I enjoyed it. 

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