National / International News

BBC Savile review delivery delayed

BBC - Tue, 2014-01-21 09:58
Delivery of the BBC's Savile review is delayed to mid-2014 until the conclusion of criminal proceedings against former BBC presenter Stuart Hall.

The Davos World Economic Forum: A lot of 'hot air'?

Marketplace - American Public Media - Tue, 2014-01-21 09:56

Some  2,500  of the world’s most powerful  business and political leaders will make their annual pilgrimage to a mountaintop in the Swiss Alps this week. They won’t be seeking a religious experience (well, most of them won't). They’re headed for the small ski resort of Davos for the 44th annual  World Economic Forum -  four days of economic discussion and debate.

Not everyone is expecting many major revelations.

"There will be a lot of bloviating," says David Rothkopf of the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace.  "There are a lot of people there who love to hear themselves talk, that go on at length. That mountaintop in Switzerland each year  is warmed by quite a bit of hot air."

Anthony Hilton, Financial  Editor of the London Evening Standard is another Davos skeptic: "They go on about the 'Spirit of Davos' and how they’re shaping the world. But  they’re not. They’re actually revelling in their own self-importance and smugness. It’s  an exercise in self-preening and group think."

The gigantic agenda seems well-meaning enough. Among the 250 subjects under discussion over the next four days  are:  climate change, the future of healthcare, the nightmare of  youth unemployment and the challenge of scientific innovation.

But some items appear gloriously misplaced in this well-heeled assembly: "One of the big themes this year is – I kid you not – income inequality," points out John Reeves of The Motley Fool financial services group. "It’s ironical: Income inequality is the theme, and you’ve got to pay $40,000 to go there and weigh in." ($40,000 is  the  estimated average cost per attendee– including travel, accommodation, and getting into the event.) 

Forget all that guff about making the world a better place, says Anthony Hilton. Once investment bankers got involved, he claims, Davos went downhill: "They started throwing parties obviously to get business. And it now has become a competition to see who gets invited to the most exclusive parties.  So the whole spirit of it has gone by the board."

But Davos must be doing something right. A thousand corporations keep it afloat, pumping in around $200 million a year. And Martin Wolf of the Financial Times asks: So what if it is a gabfest? He believes that  Davos may have helped the world weather the financial crisis by forging contacts between politicians and businesses people around the world.   With forty heads of state, 20 central bank chiefs, and  numerous tycoons and Nobel Laureates attending this year, maybe Davos is a talking shop we cannot afford to ignore.      

 "I happen to believe that talking is quite a good thing to do," Wolf says.

IMF raises UK growth forecast

BBC - Tue, 2014-01-21 09:56
The International Monetary Fund raises its growth forecast for the global economy, and the UK economy in particular.

VIDEO: Damon starts Davos with Bono joke

BBC - Tue, 2014-01-21 09:50
Actor Matt Damon has been presented with the Crystal Award at the start of the 2014 World Economic Forum in Davos.

VIDEO: How Davos prepares for... Davos

BBC - Tue, 2014-01-21 09:40
Nik Gowing travels to Davos to see how this once remote farming community in Switzerland transforms into the host for the World Economic Forum.

In Pictures: Kiev standoff

BBC - Tue, 2014-01-21 09:36
Standoff between police and protesters in Ukraine

Police calm angry crowd at 50p sale

BBC - Tue, 2014-01-21 09:26
Police are called to a discount store to calm angry shoppers chasing 50p bargains in a closing down sale.

Ardiles in car accident in Falklands

BBC - Tue, 2014-01-21 09:26
Ex-Tottenham midfielder Ossie Ardiles has "20 odd stitches" after he is involved in a car accident in the Falkland Islands.

Albarn to headline 6 Music festival

BBC - Tue, 2014-01-21 09:23
BBC radio station 6 Music is to stage its own music festival in Manchester, headlined by Blur and Gorillaz frontman Damon Albarn.

Children abused after 'card game'

BBC - Tue, 2014-01-21 09:22
Two brothers and a family friend go on trial accused of multiple serious sex offences against children, including rape.

Man charged with Farage assault

BBC - Tue, 2014-01-21 09:16
A man is charged with assaulting UKIP leader Nigel Farage as he entered a hotel in Kent.

Sen. Vitter Will Run For Governor In Louisiana

NPR News - Tue, 2014-01-21 09:15

The Republican senator confirmed the news Tuesday. He survived a 2007 prostitution scandal to easily win re-election to the Senate three years later. If he fails in his bid to become governor, he could still keep his Senate seat and decide later whether to seek re-election to that post in 2016.

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Ukraine Tracks Protesters Through Cellphones Amid Clashes

NPR News - Tue, 2014-01-21 09:14

People with cell phones who were in the vicinity of violent protests in Kiev reportedly received this disturbing text message from the government: "Dear subscriber, you are registered as a participant in a mass disturbance."

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Food could text 'eat me', MP told

BBC - Tue, 2014-01-21 09:02
The development of food packaging that texts consumers to let them know when its contents are going off leaves a junior environment minster "intrigued".

Stressed out by the Davos World Economic Forum?

Marketplace - American Public Media - Tue, 2014-01-21 08:58

This week, the who’s who of the...world ... will gather in Davos, Switzerland, to set the economic agenda for 2014.

Now the summit isn't just dull economics. This is the Alps after all, so skiing and partying also seems to be on many agendas during the week. (Though not on everyone's agenda, this year:)

Matt #Damon says he won't be skiing in Switzerland after #Davos2014 as he's a broken collarbone from falling off his mountain bike

— Joanna Partridge (@JoannaPartridge) January 21, 2014

Setting the global economic agenda isn't a small task for a four-day confab.

But when sessions such as "Rethinking Ocean Economies" and "Responding to Global Risks" get stressful, organizers have attendees' backs. For the price of the cost of membership in the World Economic forum -- that's $70,000 -- you can also attend any of the following:

  • Let Goldie Hawn convince you to meditate. She's giving a talk on the ways "neuroscience, mindfulness training and social and emotional learning can change the world"
  • Make jewelry. Attend a workshop on "precision fabrication of unique components, such as jewellery and optics."
  • Hear a special concert by the St Petersburg Mariinsky Theatre Orchestra.
  • Track how well you sleep. Sign up in advance for a Jawbone "health tracker." Keep track of your rest and exercise. 
  • Meditate with a Buddhist monk. Matthieu Ricard will lead recurring 8 a.m. sessions on how to "learn and experience the benefits of meditation."
  • See a special Screening of "Mandela: Long Walk to Freedom". Hors d'oeuvres will be served.
  • Muse upon the meaning of happiness. A session entitled "The Importance of Being Happy" promises to answer "Why is the pursuit of happiness so critical for ourworld andthat of future generations?
  • Celebrate with friends "new and old" at the "Jazz and Dance Soirée". Black tie, of course.

Video of Mariinsky Orchestra

Stressed out by the Davos World Economic Forum?

Marketplace - American Public Media - Tue, 2014-01-21 08:58

This week, the who’s who of the...world ... will gather in Davos, Switzerland, to set the economic agenda for 2014.

Now the summit isn't just dull economics. This is the Alps after all, so skiing and partying also seems to be on many agendas during the week. (Though not on everyone's agenda, this year:)

Matt #Damon says he won't be skiing in Switzerland after #Davos2014 as he's a broken collarbone from falling off his mountain bike

— Joanna Partridge (@JoannaPartridge) January 21, 2014

Setting the global economic agenda isn't a small task for a four-day confab.

But when sessions such as "Rethinking Ocean Economies" and "Responding to Global Risks" get stressful, organizers have attendees' backs. For the price of the cost of membership in the World Economic forum -- that's $70,000 -- you can also attend any of the following:

  • Let Goldie Hawn convince you to meditate. She's giving a talk on the ways "neuroscience, mindfulness training and social and emotional learning can change the world"
  • Make jewelry. Attend a workshop on "precision fabrication of unique components, such as jewellery and optics."
  • Hear a special concert by the St Petersburg Mariinsky Theatre Orchestra.
  • Track how well you sleep. Sign up in advance for a Jawbone "health tracker." Keep track of your rest and exercise. 
  • Meditate with a Buddhist monk. Matthieu Ricard will lead recurring 8 a.m. sessions on how to "learn and experience the benefits of meditation."
  • See a special Screening of "Mandela: Long Walk to Freedom". Hors d'oeuvres will be served.
  • Muse upon the meaning of happiness. A session entitled "The Importance of Being Happy" promises to answer "Why is the pursuit of happiness so critical for ourworld andthat of future generations?
  • Celebrate with friends "new and old" at the "Jazz and Dance Soirée". Black tie, of course.

Video of Mariinsky Orchestra

Ukrainian turmoil shows no sign of abating

BBC - Tue, 2014-01-21 08:56
Ukraine turmoil shows no sign of abating, writes David Stern

Vidic red card appeal rejected

BBC - Tue, 2014-01-21 08:52
Manchester United captain Nemanja Vidic has an appeal against his sending-off at Chelsea on Sunday rejected.

'Dear subscriber, you are registered as a participant in a mass disturbance'

Marketplace - American Public Media - Tue, 2014-01-21 08:50

The Ukrainian government may be using mobile phone location data to intimidate protesters during ongoing civil unrest. Ukrainians have taken to the streets in recent days criticizing President Viktor Yanukovych's seeming refusal to move towards further integration with the European Union. In the capital of Kiev, some protesters have been receiving menacing text messages, apparently from the government, reading "Dear subscriber, you are registered as a participant in a mass disturbance." Andrew Kramer of The New York Times is on the ground in Kiev, and tells Marketplace Tech host Ben Johnson about the story.

Yachtsman 'bludgeoned and drowned'

BBC - Tue, 2014-01-21 08:46
A British man, who was murdered on the Caribbean island of St Lucia, died from "asphyxia secondary to blunt force trauma", post mortem results show.

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