Government news from around the world!

Posted on August 3, 2018

bill nye spinning the globe

Right Now with Nick Smith (Linkedin/Twitter)

What I’m reading: Football Statistics Blogs — it’s less than a month now until football season, and I can. not. wait.

What I’m listening to:  Say Anything’s …Is A Real Boy — an excellent standby.

What I’m watching:  SBNation just started a series called “Rewinder” where they talk about how great sports moments came to be in the first place — here’s the one on Brandi Chastain’s iconic PK in the 1999 World Cup.

This morning, I was listening to the news on my way to work and I heard that Kane — of WWE fame — née Glenn Jacobs, had just been elected Mayor of Tennessee’s third most populous county.

This was a bit fortuitous, because honestly, I have just had an incredibly draining three weeks. It happens. But I also haven’t really been keeping up with the tech news that usually helps drive my Morning Buzzes, and so I didn’t really have anything to write about, so I thought, “Hey, let’s see what’s going on with government around the world?”

Not just the Macrons and the Merkels, I want to know what’s going on everywhere … and I gotta say … oh boy.

In Sweden, a spate of wildfires has caused a slew of burn bans, but some regions have been forced to take it a step further and enact backyard barbecue bans.

Meanwhile, Poland is ensconced in a political imbroglio regarding the ouster of basically their entire Supreme Court, but it seems like the thing making the news is how the government is going to handle a giant river snake … that nobody’s seen? Checks out.

This, of course, is compounded by the fact that Poland (and Finland) are sending some of their best firefighters to Sweden to help deal with the aforementioned wildfires.

I don’t want to really touch on China’s massive vaccine scandal or Malaysia’s child marriage debate or the contested Zimbabwean election, because it’s Friday, but it seems reasonable to touch on Iraq’s government and the fact that they’re facing firings and a wave of protests because people (very reasonably) want round-the-clock electricity during one of the hottest global summers on record.

Continuing with the theme, Ethiopia and Eritrea have recently ended their 20-year-long … “no-peace-no-war war,” but this has electricity implications in that perhaps work can now continue on the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam, restoring reliable power to a large swath of Eastern Africa. It’s still pretty contentious, but it’s better than it was a month ago.

But back to sports (it always seems to come back to sports, doesn’t it?), a legendary cricketer, Imran Khan, has just been elected PM of Pakistan. Of course, unlike Tennessee’s Mr. Jacobs, he’s long been more than just a sports star, but still:

Speaking of elections, in the Philippines, one of President Duterte’s disgraced predecessors has just been elected Speaker of the House of Representatives, which, surprisingly wasn’t a surprise at all, as she’d been the Deputy for some time, however she is their first female Speaker.

Also Berlusconi’s back. Ugh. Don’t even get me started on that walking SVU episode.

But perhaps my favorite story from the past few weeks is that an Austrian Social & Health Minister has claimed it’s possible to live on 150 Euros a month and people are challenging her to put her money where her mouth is, and it looks like she’s actually going to try. (German link, sorry)

Anyway, I suppose the point is there are a lot of people and places in this world and they all have their own issues, and sometimes it’s easy to lose sight of that when you’re busy going through your own stuff. Hopefully this was helpful to you, it certainly was to me!

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