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    The Economist Asks: Michel Barnier

    As trade tensions flare, Anne McElvoy asks the former chief Brexit negotiator about the state of relations between the European Union and the United Kingdom. Can the two sides end a stand-off about the Northern Ireland protocol?   More

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    Nobody’s fuel: Britain’s shortages

    From chicken to petrol, Britons are facing long queues and bare shelves. We ask about the multifarious reasons behind the shortfalls, and how long they will last. Tunisia’s democracy has been looking shaky for months; we examine what may change with yesterday’s appointment of its first-ever female prime minister.   More

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    Money Talks: Bricks and mortar

    China’s largest developer Evergrande is threatening to default—what does this reveal about the broader troubles in the country’s property market? And if you live in a big American or European city, there’s a good chance that a mighty financial institution could be your next landlord.   More

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    Suga-free Diet: Japan’s next leader

    The ruling party’s choice for its president—a shoo-in for prime minister—seems to overlook the people’s will. We ask how Kishida Fumio is likely to lead, and for how long. Some of Nigeria’s megachurches are larger than stadiums, and have considerable assets—as do many of their charismatic pastors.   More

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    Babbage: Don't panic

    As British petrol stations run dry, we explore the behavioural science of panic buying. Also, a dried-up lake bed reveals evidence about America’s first inhabitants. And neuroscientist Anil Seth explains what a new theory can tell us about our conscious experiences of the world—and a chance to win his book.   More

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    A run for its money: funding crunches in Congress

    America’s crash of deadlines carries risks for the government’s budget and just possibly its sovereign debt, and threatens Joe Biden’s presidency-defining social-spending reforms. We ask what happens next. South Korea’s government is ostensibly cracking down on fake news; in practice it may be hobbling real journalism.   More

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    To A Lesser Degree: The challenge

    It’s not too late to avert a climate disaster. The question is, how? We map out the three priorities: reducing emissions and finding ways to suck carbon out of the air, adapting to climate change; and navigating the fraught global politics to reach agreement at November’s UN Climate Conference in Glasgow.   More

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    Colour schemes: Germany’s coming coalition

    The country heads for a three-party government after a nail-biting election. We cut through the flurry of letters and colours to ask what is likely to happen next. The technology swiftly deployed to combat the coronavirus may also crack a four-decade-old problem: vaccinating against HIV.   More

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    Editor’s Picks: September 27th 2021

    A selection of three essential articles read aloud from the latest issue of The Economist. This week: the mess Merkel leaves behind, America gets serious about countering China (11:01) and Nigerian megachurches practise the prosperity they preach (17:36).   More

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    Checks and Balance: AUKUS ruckus

    Occasionally, you can see big shifts in foreign policy happen right before your eyes. The unveiling of AUKUS, the trilateral defence pact between Australia, the United Kingdom and the United States, was one of those rare occasions.   More

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    The Economist Asks: What happens after Merkel?

    Host Anne McElvoy reviews the German Chancellor’s 16-year leadership with Wolfgang Nowak, a political veteran who advised Angela Merkel’s predecessor, and asks what made her such a phenomenal politician. And as the race to replace Angela Merkel draws to a close, Anne talks to security expert Claudia Major about the domestic and foreign challenges awaiting her successor.   More

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    Same assembly, rewired: the United Nations meets

    The annual United Nations General Assembly is more than just worthy pledges and fancy dinners; we ask where the tensions and the opportunities lie this time around. Last year’s fears of a crippling “twindemic” of covid-19 and influenza proved unfounded—and that provides more reason to worry this year.   More

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    Money Talks: Volatile gas

    The price of natural gas is rocketing, with global consequences. Is volatility in this crucial fuel here to stay? We also ask why an investigation at the World Bank has put Kristalina Georgieva, the head of the International Monetary Fund, in the spotlight.   More

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    The homes stretch: Evergrande

    China’s property behemoth has slammed up against new rules on its giant debt pile. We ask what wider risks it now poses as a cash crunch bites. Britain has begun a demographic trend unusual in the rich world: its share of young people is spiking—and will be for a decade.   More

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    Babbage: From pandemic to twindemic

    As the northern hemisphere heads towards its second winter battling covid-19, epidemiologist Professor Dame Anne Johnson explains the risk of a surge in flu cases and how to avoid a double pandemic.   More

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    Running to stand still: Canada’s election

    Prime Minister Justin Trudeau remains in power after Monday’s election, but he emerges without the majority he wanted, and with his soft power damaged. He now faces a fourth wave of the pandemic and an emboldened far-right from a weaker position.   More

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    Potemkin polls: Russia’s elections

    The winner of Russia’s elections was not in doubt. Vladimir Putin’s party, United Russia, came out on top. But despite the ballot stuffing and repression, the opposition still managed to rattle the Kremlin.   More

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    Editor’s Picks: September 20th 2021

    A selection of three essential articles read aloud from the latest issue of The Economist. This week, the dream and danger of decentralised finance, how America is substantially reducing child poverty (10:02) and a defence of, like, “like” (18:57)   Please subscribe to The Economist for full access to print, digital and audio editions: www.economist.com/podcastoffer   More

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    Checks and Balance: Life choices

    When the Supreme Court declined to block a Texas law prohibiting most abortions after six weeks, it gave the strongest signal yet that its conservative majority is prepared to deny women the right to an abortion.   More