United Kingdom, think tank: with Brexit, Covid-19 crisis & Co. risks becoming the new Italy

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18/05/2021 11:30


The UK, fresh from divorce from the European Union with Brexit, it risks becoming the new Italy: this is what emerges from a report by the think tank Resolution Foundation, reported in some articles by Reuters and the Guardian.
In the analysis of the independent think tank we read that the country copes with a decade of major challenges, which could end up undermining the solidity of its economy, bringing it closer to that of Italy than to that of the engine of the European economy, namely Germany.

Among the challenges, there are certainly the problems related to Brexit and those that other European countries also have to face, such as theera post Covid-19, the transition to a zero-emission economy, an aging population and technological changes.
All this, while in the last decade the United Kingdom has been characterized by having suffered 1) the growth of slowest productivity in over 120 years; 2) mobility in the weakest labor market since the 1930s; 3) the strongest inequality than in any other country of the European Union, apart from Bulgaria.
In this situation, the report authors warn if there are no appropriate plans to overcome these vulnerabilities, the British GDP per capita will come closer to that of Italy, than to that of Germany, by the end of this decade.
“The UK is now facing a decisive decade, with the post-Covid-19 era, Brexit and the transition to net zero emissions of pollutants coming along with the major changes taking place in technology and demographics. This is much more important than the economy. Any failure to overcome these challenges would leave the nation divided and weaker, ”he stressed Clive Cowdery, founder and co-chair of the investigation “The Economy 2030” drawn up by think tank Resolution Foundation.
It is noted in the report that the country needs a new approach and that “what makes a new approach essential it is the magnitude of the change arriving”.
In addition to presenting the various challenges, the analysis also provides some clarifications:

  • Covid-19: the result of the pandemic is that there are more people in smart-working (in the home working report): this means that the range of lifestyle choices that professionals can make has widened. But it also means that those who earn less will have to find a new job in new working environments.
  • Brexi: the UK benefits from a newfound freedom of choice, but it also faces higher costs in its relations with the EU, which remains its main trading partner.
  • Zero net emissions: decarbonization will create economic opportunities, but urgent action is needed. The UK will have to move from installing nearly zero heat pumps per year toinstall 3,000 of them every day, by 2030.
  • Technology: the arrival of new technologies will improve but will also upset the standard of living. In this regard, the OECD predicts that one in seven jobs could disappear due to the automation process, over the next 15-20 years.
  • Demography: the ratio of people aged under 20 or over 65 to those aged 20 to 64 will increase from 72% to 79% in the period from 2020 to 2030: this will be the faster change than in any other decade of the first half of the 21st century.

Finally, the report points out that, although the government of Boris Johnson has pledged to rebuild the country’s economy with various slogans “build back better”, “level up” e “global Britain”, no economic plan has yet been produced for the achievement of these noble objectives.
Some recently released macro data is worth mentioning:
In the first quarter of 2021, when the UK was in the grip of the his third lockdown, GDP fell by 1.5%, according to data reported by the National Statistics Office.
Although better than estimated, Britain’s gross domestic product – as Samuel Tombs, an economist at Pantheon Macroeconomics, pointed out to Reuters – has shown that the country has lagged behind other G7 economies for the fourth consecutive quarter. However, Tombs pointed out, it is possible that UK GDP will grow by 5% in the period between April and June. See also industrial production data.
The Bank of England predicts for UK GDP a recovery up to + 7.25% in the whole of 2021, at the strongest pace of growth fueled by the arms race ahead of the Second World War; that said, in 2020, the year of Covid and the lockdown measures, the British economy collapsed by 9.8%, reporting the strongest contraction in more than 300 years.

“What is this, a pandemic or a business? In Europe, like sheep”

Juan Muñoz, member of the now-defunct comic duo Cruz y Raya, is on tour in Latin America and, during their travels, noticed some differences in managing the health crisis with respect to Europe, which has made it explode.

After spending time in the Dominican Republic, José Mota’s former partner took to Twitter this Monday to criticize the management of the pandemic in Europe: “I no longer know what to say, well I’m sorry, whoever feels offended screw him. What is this a pandemic or a bloody business? “

The comedian criticized that some of his friends had left after becoming a PCR that “would be valid in the United States and in Europe is not valid”, and the same thinks of the differences at the time of managing the vaccine.

Here I go to the pharmacy and buy the vaccine that I want: the Pfizer, the Chinese… And I can get vaccinated tomorrow if I want. In Europe, like sheep. What’s up now, man !? “, he criticized angrily at the end of his video.

But, next to the recording, he wrote a tweet in which he expanded his speech pointing to the United Kingdom: “We are fed up with this business pandemic … You just have to leave Europe to realize what they are doing with us“.

“¿¡The English ride Brexit and now they have to get vaccinated with their vaccine which, supposedly, is the best !? “, he finally wondered.


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Mumbai records biggest 24-hour rain in May – EzAnime.net

Wind gusts and downpours hit Mumbai and its neighboring areas on Monday as the very severe cyclonic storm Tauktae passed close to the coast here as it headed towards Gujarat. (Photo Source: ANI)

Mumbai received 230mm of rain from cyclonic storm Tauktae, and a weather expert claimed it was the highest 24-hour downpour in May in recorded history.

According to the Mumbai center of the Indian Meteorological Department (IMD), the Santacruz Observatory (representative of the suburbs) recorded 230.3 mm of rain in the 24-hour period that ended at 8:30 am on Tuesday.

In addition, the Colaba Observatory (representative of South Mumbai) recorded 207.6 mm of rain during the same period.

According to IMD calculations, rainfall above 204.5 mm is considered extremely strong,

“Mumbai (Santacruz): 230mm in the last 24 hours due to the cyclone effect, this is the largest 24-hour rain in Mumbai in May in recorded history. #CycloneTauktae, ”Vineet Kumar, a researcher on cyclones in the northern Indian Ocean at the Indian Institute of Tropical Meteorology in Pune tweeted on Tuesday.

The director of SID, Climate Research & Services in Pune, KS Hosalikar of IMD, retweeted Kumar’s post.

Wind gusts and downpours hit Mumbai and its neighboring areas on Monday as the very severe cyclonic storm Tauktae passed close to the coast here as it headed towards Gujarat.

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United Kingdom Queen Elizabeth announces upcoming ban on conversion therapy

Queen Elizabeth announces that gay conversion therapy will be banned in England and Wales after consultation. The Queen of England was speaking on May 11, during her annual speech on the occasion of the official opening of Parliament.

Under the name of “conversion therapy” are practices aimed at changing a person’s sexual orientation or gender identity.

The speech is not written by the Queen, but by the government, outlining future policies and bills. The British government explains that a public consultation will be opened before the official ban of these practices. Religious freedom and the protection of health professionals will thus be examined.

Read more

PIMEM asks the Government to create communication services in London and Berlin to manage the image of the Balearic Islands

Drafting Marratxí May 18, 2021

The Federation considers that the pandemic has highlighted the need to create rapid, direct and official information channels on everything that happens in the archipelago

Within the framework of Feria Features which begins tomorrow in Madrid, PIMEM asks the Balearic Government to create or rent the communication services of a agency located in London and Berlin to transfer to the media in the United Kingdom and Germany all the necessary information on the socio-economic and health reality of our archipelago. The Federation considers it essential that our islands provide direct information channels with the public opinion of the two main markets and the best way, according to the employers, would be through the professional work of English and German journalists in their country of origin.

The president of the PIMEM, Jordi Mora assures that “the latest decisions of the British Government to leave the Balearic Islands out despite their good data is a good example of the need to provide us with direct means to counteract publications at the national level that have clear effects negative about our islands ”.

PIMEM considers that in full era of digital communication Mechanisms are needed to be able to constantly communicate the steps taken by the Balearic executive in areas that go beyond the pandemic and its terrible effects. In this sense, the Federation believes it is essential to communicate aspects related to sustainability, the respect for our environment, regulations that are approved and that affect the consumer, whether resident or visitor, cultural projects or actions of social responsibility towards certain social groups. Mora believes that “tourism as a hyperdynamic economic activity needs to provide its markets with quick responses and not always within a context of crisis like the current one, but rather as a global destination strategy. These agencies that we propose should be our best tool in the immediate future to explain any change in the tourism model and transformation in the medium and long term ”.

PIMEM does not specify which would be the best operation, if rental or creation, since it should be subjected to a very technical debate at the communication level and with a political consensus of all the groups in the Chamber, since for the employers it should be a consensus that allowed to have and keep these channels apart from the political color that governs in our community. To defend this proposal, according to Mora, “we should base ourselves on two unquestionable facts; tourist destinations exceed national administrative limits and the State of Autonomies allows a decentralized management of tourism, this is where we must begin to become aware of the need to create, master and use the best tools in favor of our tourist destination ”.

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Belfast Lessons for Israel | The mistake of …

When I went to Israel for the first time in 1976, after studying for three years in Northern Ireland, I was struck by the similarities. It seems appropriate that at the same time as this conflict broke out in Palestine, a commission was operating in Belfast on a massacre by the British army half a century ago. The Ballymurphy massacre occurred between August 9-11, 1971 when ten Catholics were shot to death in that working-class neighborhood of Belfast. For years, the British government and army said the dead were armed IRA militants, but this week it was determined that they were innocent civilians and that shooting them was “unjustified”. Premier Boris Johnson openly apologized for the deaths.

The most important parallel between Northern Ireland then and Gaza today is that grossly excessive military force is used in both cases, and used to solve political problems. In Ireland, the massacre served nothing more than to cause the government to lose legitimacy, arouse hatred and help the IRA recruit. Israel also lives by announcing that they win remarkable victories and kill enemy commanders, as if the leaders of the motley Hamas and Islamic Jihad were irreplaceable technicians.

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said the militants are “going to pay a high price for their belligerence.” Sure, but the highest price is paid by civilians in Gaza, as in 2014, when 2,000 Palestinians and 73 Israelis died in a 67-day “war.” Nothing seems to change, which is remarkable after the administration of Donald Trump, the most pro-Israeli president in history. With their son-in-law Jared Kushner they enthusiastically supported Netanyahu’s thesis that you could have a firm peace while keeping the Palestinians subordinate and defeated.

It wasn’t going to work, but the idea fell so quickly after Trump left that it’s a surprise. The Palestinian Question is back on the international agenda, unsolved and explosive as it has always been for a century. Perhaps the biggest effect Trump had was fueling self-destructive hubris in the Israeli government, which was tempted to expand settlements in the West Bank, evict neighbors in Sheik Jarrah, and suppress them with gas and rocket grenades even in the Al Aqsa mosque.

There is one aspect in which this crisis is more intense and broader than the 2008/9 and 2014 “wars” in Gaza, and that is that the two million Israeli Arabs, one fifth of the country’s population, now participate. In mixed cities like Lod, Jaffa, Acre and Haifa there were attacks on people, shops, cars, synagogues and mosques. In Lod, where the fighting was serious, live 47,000 Jews and 23,000 Muslims.

Which adds another parallel to Northern Ireland, because Israel now has to contain two hostile populations living together in a small space. In Northern Ireland, Catholics and Protestants number one million each, while between the Jordan and the Mediterranean live seven million Israelis and seven million Palestinians. There will be borders and fortified walls, but the region is a political unit as evidenced by the violence from Jerusalem to Gaza, Israel and the West Bank.

In 1971, the British government made the disastrous decision to use the army to sustain what was sometimes called the Orange State. This meant making Catholics accept second-class citizens in a Protestant-controlled state, something Catholics were never going to accept, even if they did not opt ​​for arms. This was obvious from the start, but it took London thirty years to come to terms with it and do something about it. In 1998, the Good Friday accords achieved a division of powers between very different communities in identity, culture, and loyalties.

It would be nice to think of something like that, one day, between Israel and Palestine, but there is a crucial difference. The Irish compromise stemmed from the recognition, particularly by the British government and Irish nationalists, that neither side could achieve a complete victory. But in the Middle East, the balance of power seems to overwhelmingly favor the Israelis, who feel no need to negotiate because they have absolute military superiority and the support of the United States other powers.

The weaknesses of the Palestinians, many self-inflicted, include very poor leadership and political organization. Hamas can fire a lot of rockets at Israel as a challenge, but that is politically negative because it allows the Israeli government to present itself as defending the country and fighting terrorism. There have been no elections in the Palestinian state for fifteen years, so its authority is really weak. Palestinians should mobilize peacefully demanding civil rights and an end to discrimination against them.

They have an ace up their sleeve that Israel cannot win until they say they lost. This week shows that this is not going to happen. Israel has strong cards in political and military poker, but it cannot say that it won because this game never ends.


Naryshkin said Britain and the United States could be involved in the SolarWinds hack

The Foreign Intelligence Service (SVR) of Russia is not involved in the hacker attack on the American company SolarWinds, said in an interview BBC SVR director Sergei Naryshkin. According to him, the attack could have been organized by Britain or the United States. The SolarWinds software was hacked in 2020. The US suspected Russia of the attack and blacklisted six Russian tech companies.

When asked if he was involved in the hacker hacking of the SVR, Mr. Naryshkin replied that he “would be flattered to hear such high marks” in relation to Russian intelligence, but not in his rules “to present the creative achievements of other authors, other performers for his own”. According to him, there is no evidence of the SVR’s involvement in the attacks. “They are not. In any case, they are not on the public plane. Have you seen the evidence? Not? I haven’t seen them either, ”said Sergei Naryshkin.

He admitted that the United Kingdom and the United States may be involved in the hacking of SolarWinds software. The head of the SVR draws the appropriate conclusions based on information received by the media from the ex-employee of the American National Security Agency Edward Snowden. In June 2013, he gave the Washington Post and The Guardian a number of classified materials about the surveillance programs of the US and UK intelligence services on the Internet.

Mr. Naryshkin quoted an excerpt from a British newspaper: “Using secret partnerships with leading technology companies and Internet service providers, the intelligence agencies of the United States and Britain, according to The Guardian, have injected secret vulnerabilities in commercial encryption software.” He noted that he “does not want to claim” that the hacker attack on SolarWinds was “carried out by US agencies or one of them,” but, in his opinion, “the tactics are similar.”

The head of the SVR also called the accusations against Russia of involvement in cyber attacks and interference in elections in other countries ridiculous. According to him, such publications “look like a bad detective story.” “These stories related to poisoning, cyber attacks, hacking, interference in elections, which are attributed to the Russian Federation, are so absurd, and sometimes even miserable, that, you know, it’s even inconvenient to comment on this in a conversation between two highly educated people,” added Sergei Naryshkin …

We will remind, the United States claimed to have received information about the involvement of the SVR in the cyberattack on SolarWinds from the American intelligence community. Washington called the SVR the executor of a large-scale cyber espionage campaign: according to it, Russian intelligence was able to spy on or potentially disrupt the work of more than 16 thousand computer systems around the world. The SVR considers the US accusations nonsense.

On April 15, US President Joe Biden signed a decree on the introduction of new anti-Russian sanctions. Restrictive measures, in particular, were introduced against 16 organizations and 16 individuals, and the sanctions also affected the Russian national debt. In addition, the United States expelled ten employees of the Russian diplomatic mission in Washington. On May 14, the Russian government included the United States and the Czech Republic in the list of foreign states “committing unfriendly actions” towards Russia. These countries will be limited in the right to hire citizens of the Russian Federation and third countries to work in diplomatic missions. The work on the list was carried out by decree of President Vladimir Putin.

Details – in the material “Kommersant” “If a friend suddenly turned out to be not the United States, and not a Czech, but – so.”


Trump collaborator charged with sex trafficking … close friend pleads guilty

The shadow of Donald Trump it still falls on some characters in American politics, and almost always for the worse …

In the tabloids of the American Union the name of Matt Gaetz, Republican congressman close to the former president involved for a month in suspicions of sex trafficking, although still without firm accusations.

But yesterday, a former official from Florida who participated in the federal investigation into whether Gaetz was trafficking a minor for sex pleaded guilty, and agreed to cooperate with prosecutors, bringing Gaetz closer to court.

Is about Joel Greenberg, former tax collector in the county of Seminole, Florida, who pleaded guilty to six counts, including sex trafficking of a minor, at a court hearing in Orlando.

His lawyer, Fritz Scheller, indicated that his client would cooperate if prosecutors asked him for information on Gaetz: “He will honor his plea agreement.”

Matt Gaetz is today an advocacy legislator for Donald Trump… And accused of sex trafficking and having had sexual relations with a minor.

39 years old, he is one of the members of the Camera most loyal to Trump during his presidency, and has denied the accusations, he says he is a victim of extortion.

According to the New York Times, Greenberg met women through websites and introduced them to Gaetz.


Fund Manager, UK Stock Buy / Tech Stock Sell = BofA Survey | Reuters

[London, 18th Reuters]–According to a May survey of fund managers released by US financial giant Bank of America (BofA) on the 18th, British stocks are being bought, while tech stocks are rising amid growing concerns about inflation. It was sold.

Allocation to UK equities in May was the highest since March 2014. The uncertainties surrounding Britain’s withdrawal from the European Union (EU) have been dispelled, and the UK economy has resumed after a lockdown (city blockade) following the outbreak of the new coronavirus.

Unprecedented economic stimulus measures against the backdrop of the new corona epidemic are now raising inflation concerns and have been positioned as the biggest tail risk in the market in the BofA survey.

These concerns have led investors to buy more sensitive sectors of the early economic cycle, such as commodities, banking and mining, while lowering their overweight position on tech stocks to their lowest level in three years.

In addition, 75% of the investors surveyed said that crypto assets (virtual currency) Bitcoin is in the “bubble”.

The survey was conducted on 215 fund managers with total assets under management of $ 625 billion.