17 July 2016   Leave a comment

Turkey’s President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has demanded that the US extradite Fethullah Gulen, a Turkish cleric who is currently living in rural Pennsylvania.  Erdogan has accused Gulen of being centrally involved in the recent coup attempt against his government and temporarily closed operations at the Incirlik air base, a crucial air base in US operations against Daesh (the Islamic State) in Syria and Iraq.  The fear is that Erdogan will lever the use of the airbase to force Gulen’s extradition.  There is little question that Gulen has actively opposed the Erdogan government, but unless Tirukey can come up with substantive evidence of activities that led to the coup, it is unlikely that the US will extradite Gulen.

Thousands of Venezuelans crossed the border to Colombia at the city of San Antonio to the Colombian city of Cucuta.  The border was temporarily opened by Venezuelan President Maduro and the people took advantage of the opportunity to buy food and medicine which is simply unavailable in Venezuela.   The mass movement is a clear index of how desperate the situation in Venezuela has become.

  

The McKinsey Global Institute has just published an important study on income inequality in many rich countries.  Some of the findings include:

“Between 65 and 70 percent of households in 25 advanced economies, the equivalent of 540 million to 580 million people, were in segments of the income distribution whose real market incomes—their wages and income from capital—were flat or had fallen in 2014 compared with 2005. This compared with less than 2 percent, or fewer than ten million people, who experienced this phenomenon between 1993 and 2005.”

“Today’s younger generation is at risk of ending up poorer than their parents. Most population segments experienced flat or falling incomes in the 2002–12 decade but young, less-educated workers were hardest hit, according to our second analysis, which segmented income from France, Italy, and the United States by age and educational attainment. Today’s younger generation is at risk of ending up poorer than their parents.”

The political implications of this shift are extraordinary.  There is a genuine risk that the legitimacy of the economic and political systems of the developed world will be eroded and we have no idea what alternatives exist to take their place.

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Posted July 17, 2016 by vferraro1971 in World Politics

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