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..
Everyone loves sales. Whether it's the latest Xbox game, kitchen appliance or electronic gadget, people are always looking for bargains, especially during the run up to Christmas. But there's a stark difference between lining up for Boxing Day sales and the animalistic behaviour witnessed last week during the "Black Friday" sales...
As more and more stories of human trafficking appear in newspapers and on television, consumers are increasingly asking what they can do to fight this problem. Many are frustrated, and feel disconnected from the people who make the clothes they wear or pick the fruit they eat, toiling in foreign countries and even on distant continents thousands of kilometres from the stores and markets where the products are sold...
In countries where tipping is not the norm, the general understanding is that tipping is a reward for those who go above-and-beyond to offer a top-quality service. However, the Japanese, for example, suggest that the employer is paying good money for their staff to do precisely that - and surely that work ethic cannot be faulted.
In his speech last night, the President stated that the United States had a 'responsibility to lead', and that the values of freedom, justice, and dignity underpin American leadership in an uncertain world. Adherence to these principles has been found wanting in recent years; let's hope that policymakers remember them while they search for a comprehensive response to the Islamic State's provocations.
Public health emergencies often occur in the place least likely to be able to manage them, and western Africa was poorly prepared for the latest outbreak of Ebola. However, as much as an overwhelmed world might fervently hope that it will remain an African problem, its impact will be felt far beyond the borders of Liberia and its neighbours. Ebola outranks everything else on a crowded global agenda today, and the quicker we acknowledge this, the more effectively it can be contained.
The number of children on the route to the US keeps on growing. Nine per cent of the patients treated by MSF in south and central Mexico are minors. "Kids typically come with their families - normally they are not alone," says MSF psychologist Miguel Gil. "They live it in another way, they have a clearer perspective of time than adults, and they learn the route and the places by heart."
For the nations of Europe, the legacy of appeasing Russian behaviour makes a vigorous response to the current crisis absolutely vital. While there may be economic risk inherent in imposing sweeping sanctions, a broad package of 'level three' measures, targeting vulnerable sectors of the Russian economy, is essential.
The General Election is just 10 months away. But the focus of its debate is a generational challenge to share the benefits of growth, in an environment of ongoing reductions in public spending. The good news is that the current squeeze in living standards is not inevitable and there are choices we make to reach a different outcome.