International

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“Shared western values”

Rich countries, with 14 per cent of the world’s population, have secured 53 per cent of the “Western” covid vaccines. Meanwhile you have to search hard for information on vaccines being produced or tested in other countries, including Russia and Cuba. Almost all the Pfizer-Biontech vaccines will go to rich […]

Current Affairs International

Whatsapp in pursuit of monopoly, and the alternative

For almost a decade Facebook has aggressively set out to acquire a monopoly in the field of social media communications. Popular communications platforms, such as Instagram and Whatsapp, which rivalled Facebook’s own services, were acquired (in 2012 and 2014, respectively), to consolidate the market and ultimately to profit from a captive audience locked behind “walled gardens” and unable to communicate between platforms.

International

Let’s move forward!

Scientists and environmentalists, decades ago, warned the world of an impending global pandemic. Those in the corridors of power who paid no heed to it are now surprised and shocked. Scientists have raised the alarm over a greater catastrophe endangering our very survival on this

Current Affairs International

Social media immoderation

Modern on-line social media are a continuing large-scale social experiment as much as we want to consider them a norm of modern life.

Whenever the debate on the effects, drawbacks or benefits of on-line social media arises, there is always an attempt to draw analogies with physical social spaces, such as a public square or perhaps the village community centre.

International Socialism

Vietnam perseveres

On 25 January, 2021, the 13th National Congress of the Communist Party of Vietnam will open in Hanoi. The Congress takes place in the context of Vietnam’s successes against Covid-19 where Vietnam has seen less than 1.5 thousand cases and 35 deaths (at the time of writing) in a country […]

Imperialism International Ireland

CETA must be stopped

THE GOVERNMENT has been forced to postpone a controversial vote on the Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement (CETA)—a free-trade agreement between the European Union and Canada—until the new year.

It had hoped to have it ratified by the Dáil after a 55-minute debate on 15 December. The vote had already been postponed from October to give the Green Party leader, Eamon Ryan, time to convince his members to support the treaty, which he has failed to do. A number of senior members still have concerns, and they are attempting to

International Political Economy

China’s digital currency

In 2008 the inventor of Bitcoin, Satoshi Nakamoto, expressed his view that “the root problem with conventional currencies is all the trust that’s required to make it work. The central bank must be trusted not to debase the currency, but the history of fiat currencies is full of breaches of that trust.”¹ This is an old right-wing libertarian talking-point: “When the state spends money to achieve social aims, it devalues money in general, which is an attack on people with lots of money.”

Imperialism International

World’s poor left at the mercy of Covid

As 2020 comes to an end—a year that many would like to forget— sadly, despite the world pandemic, there is no good will from global capitalism towards the peoples of the global south in their battle against covid-19.

The TRIPS Council of the World Trade Organization, which deals with intellectual property rights, debated a proposal tabled by India and South Africa, supported by Eswatini (formerly Swaziland) and Kenya,