The whole furore of Christmas and talking to my friend left me with a great sense of depletion. I recently found employment and I even worked in the week between Christmas and New Year's Eve. While I was working I thought about my friend, who told me that she did not want any medication and preferred to live with just her memories.
The success of the so called '1%' - bankers, financial speculators and entrepreneurs who control so much of modern wealth - is clearly visible. But what should the response of politicians be to growing inequality? How can we reconcile the obvious need to grow the economy while ensuring the weakest and most vulnerable in society do not get left behind?
Pity the Greeks. Today as they commemorate their 'OHI' to Italy's fascist regime and their joining the Allies in World War II, instead of enjoying the traditional military parade as it snakes through the plateies festooned with white and blue ribbons and flags, they will be contemplating a far grimmer scenario...
The image of the US as the Land of the Free is being put into question. Ferguson, plus the cases of Tamir Rice, Darrien Hunt and Eric Garner, exposed America as an intolerant country where many are not free. The Prosperity Index shows this is true not only for African Americans, but for all citizens across the board..
The quality of European universities and their campuses not only affects policy agendas of education, research and innovation. It also affects Europe's position in the global competition for the best students and professors (the global 'battle for brains'), and the wider competitive advantage, productivity, profitability and sustainable development of Europe.
In the past 30 years, if we look at a country like the US, which can be considered the most visible democracy on earth, about 50% of the country's GDP was transferred from the bottom 90% of the taxpayers to the richest 1% of the Americans. This happened in front of everyone's eyes, in popularly elected governments and freedom of speech.
I met Prince Charles recently in Wales. Joined by my colleague, journalist-historian Hywel Williams, the two of us were invited to meet the Prince of Wales at Coed Darcy, where a small group of guests had been invited to see how Neath Port Talbot council, BP, the Welsh assembly and developers St Modwen are trying to turn one of Europe's biggest brownfield sites into a healthy, flourishing community.
Fireworks, candles and lanterns brightened up night skies across the world as Hindus, Sikhs and Jains all celebrated Diwali, the festival of lights. ...