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Austerity Today


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Protesters, upset over school closings and austerity cuts, march to Mayor 

Chicago Sun-Times
If the mayor was home on the Fourth of July, he’d look out to see hundreds in front of his home, holding signs that read “#onetermmayor” and calling austerity a reason for some of the city’s biggest problems. Dubbed a fight against austerity, the group 
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Arbitrary austerity fuels organised crime in Europe


The Conversation
Until the 1990s, Europeans viewed themselves to be generally unaffected by the activities of organised crime, with the notable exception of Italy and, to a minor extent, Germany. But now, Europol’s recently published European Union Serious and 
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Will the age of austerity harm health?


BBC News
Sandwell, like many areas that were heavily reliant on manufacturing, was hit hard by the recession of the 1980s. Unemployment rose steeply and poverty increased. In some respects, the area has never recovered. The West Midlands borough is now the 
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End to era of austerity budgets within ‘touching distance’, claims Michael Noonan
Irish Times
Ireland is within “touching distance” of no longer having to frame annual austerity budgets, Minister of Finance Michael Noonan has told members of the financial services industry. “We have a difficult budget coming up in October,” said Mr Noonan 
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An Autogestión Alternative to Austerity: Occupy, Resist, Produce!

Truth-Out
An Autogestión Alternative to Austerity: Occupy, Resist, Produce! Austerity policies continue to deliver pain to populations the world over, but shifts toward democratic self-direction deliver much-needed hope. Home · News · Opinion · Video · Art 
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Portuguese coalition holds together

SBS
Portugal’s PM Pedro Passos Coelho says the coalition has found “a formula” that secures its survival after fears it would break up over austerity policies. Portugal’s centre-right government coalition has averted its break-up in a dispute over 
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Greek Salaries Cut Another 10%
Greek Reporter
The austerity measures have also worsened a six-year recession and created a record 27.4 percent unemployment rate and put 1.3 million people – all in the private sector – out of work. Until Samaras shut down the national broadcaster ERT on June 11 and 
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Portugal: A bitter pill too far?

Deutsche Welle
Those tensions reached a temporary climax this week when two top government officials resigned in Portugal. The architect of the country’s austerity, Finance Minister Vitor Gaspar, stepped down. He cited public backlash against his policies. Less than 
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Spanish downturn a disaster for green energy
BusinessWorld Online Edition
MADRID — Spain’s wind turbine manufacturers are laying off workers and farmers who installed solar panels are facing ruin as austerity policies afflict the long-coddled green energy sector. Wind turbines in La Veleta wind park, in Monasterio de 
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Lisbon finds formula to avert collapse
The Times (subscription)
Portugal’s centre-right coalition Government last night averted its collapse in a row over austeritypolicies after striking a deal which will reassure eurozone partners that a second financial rescue will not be needed for the bailed out nation. “A 
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Portugal Government Lives, as Does Crisis
Wall Street Journal
Mr. Portas’ resignation Tuesday in protest over the strict application of austerity demands by the country’s international bailout lenders “was a personal decision,” Mr. Passos Coelho said. He added that Mr. Portas had told him he was committed to 
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International financial news
The Daily Telegraph
LISBON – Portugal’s leaders are fighting to prevent a collapse of the coalition government in a dispute over austerity policies squeezing the bailed-out nation. LONDON – The Bank of England has hinted that it is unlikely to lift record-low borrowing 
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Ireland’s Coalition Seen Secure Despite Lawmakers’ Revolt
Wall Street Journal
The coalition is preparing to detail in October more painful spending cuts and tax increases for its 2014 austerity budget to meet the conditions of the bailout Ireland struck with the European Union and International Monetary Fund in late 2010. The 
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Portugal on brink of collapse sparking fears the country will not be able to 
Daily Mail
Portugal’s financial markets nosedived today amid fears that repayments on its £64billion bailout could soon become unsustainable as the government looked set to collapse following a spat over the country’s austerity programme. Share prices dropped by 
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Passos Coelho: I will not go
Morning Star Online
Mr Gaspar said he lacked public support for the austerity programme the PM had brought him in to carry out. Mr Portas, who has demanded greater emphasis on growth measures, said he could not accept Mr Gaspar’s replacement, former junior finance 
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Corporations Pay Lower Tax Rates Than The Middle Class
ThinkProgress
Simply put, “austerity fatigue” has the government that’s enforced steep cuts to public services on the brink of collapse. After the minister in charge of austerity plans resigned Monday, Prime Minister Pedro Passos Coelho appointed a replacement who …
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Portugal: The Price of Austerity
Council on Foreign Relations (blog)
The leader of the junior coalition partner CDS-PP resigned yesterday, complaining that the new Finance Minister (Maria Luís Albuquerque, replacing Vítor Gaspar who resigned Monday) represented a “mere continuity” of failed austerity policies. While it 
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Greece pressed on austerity
Investor’s Business Daily
The next 8.1 bil euro bailout installment may be broken into smaller payments, the top eurozone finance minister said, as lenders push Athens to meet demands for economic reforms and gov’t job cuts. Greece doesn’t need the full payment at once, and …
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Political turmoil rattles Europe’s fragile economies
Globe and Mail
 past several months. Political instability in Portugal, combined with troubles in Greece and Italy, raise the prospect of an austerity backlash, rather than the gaping budget deficits that have been a hallmark of the debt crisis in the 17-member 
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Consumers increasingly turn to Internet to buy drugs – EU report


Virtually any kind of illegal drug can be bought on the Internet and delivered by post to users who no longer need to make direct contact with dealers, an EU study published on Thursday said. It gave no statistics on online drug sales, which are normally conducted on so-called “darknets”, or anonymous computer networks.

The report, compiled by the European Monitoring Centre for Drugs and Drug Addiction (EMCDDA) and Europol, the pan-European police agency, said increased globalisation and communication technology made it harder to track drug routes.

“Practically any type of drug can be bought on the Internet,” Europol director Rob Wainwright told a briefing. “The consumers may feel that it is ‘cleaner’ to buy drugs without any direct contact with the drug dealer.”

These drugs are being moved through legitimate forms of commercial transportation – containers, aircraft and postal services, all making the drugs harder to intercept.

EMCDDA director Wolfgang Goetz said drug users’ behaviour was also changing.

“Patterns of drug use have become more fluid, with consumers often using multiple substances or substituting one drug for another,” Goetz said.

Northwest Europe a major concern

Europol’s Wainwright said drug trafficking was the main activity of organised crime groups, providing funding for other criminal activity.

The report pinpointed northwest Europe — Britain, the Netherlands, Belgium and northern France — as an area where organised crime is high, partly because of its many transport hubs, and Wainwright said the region’s status as a final destination for cocaine and heroin, as well as people trafficking and illegal immigration, made it a major concern.

The report recommended that the European Union work to target high-value crime groups, develop intelligence on the geographic relocation of potential criminals, interrupt money flows and create barriers to drug sales on the Internet.

EU Home Affairs Commissioner Cecilia Malmstrom said ministers from the 27 member states would study the report for possible policy changes and action across the European Union.

“We need to keep pace with these new developments and adapt our policies and responses to this reality,” Malmstrom said. “National measures, however robust, will simply not be sufficient if implemented in isolation.”

The European Union is an increasingly important producer of synthetic drugs and cannabis, with mobile production units making it easy for synthetic drugs to be concealed during manufacturing.

“As with synthetic drugs, there has been a trend towards producing the drug near to its intended consumers,” Goetz said. “This will be a growing trend in the future.”

The report estimated 2,500 tonnes of cannabis are consumed each year in the European Union and Norway, with a retail value of 18-30 billion euros.

Malmstrom said no European-wide legalisation of cannabis is on the Commission’s agenda.

via Consumers increasingly turn to Internet to buy drugs – EU report.

via Consumers increasingly turn to Internet to buy drugs – EU report.

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