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The WeekThe Week

The Week V. 1200

The Week covers the Best of the British and Foreign Media. With its non partisan reporting, The Week gives the reader an insight into all the the news, people, arts, drama, property, books and how the international media has reported it. This concise guide allows the reader to be up to date and have a wealth of knowledge to allow them to discuss all these key topics with their friends and peers.

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51 Issues


access_time9 min.
the main stories… …and how they were covered

What happened The giveaway Budget Philip Hammond declared this week that Britain’s era of austerity was “finally coming to an end”, as he unveiled the biggest giveaway Budget since the Tories came to power in 2010. Buoyed by a £13bn annual windfall from better-than-expected tax receipts and borrowing forecasts, the Chancellor announced plans to boost funding for strained public services, and to bring forward income tax cuts and increases in the national living wage. But in a clear warning to Eurosceptics, Hammond insisted that these spending commitments were dependent on the UK securing a Brexit deal with the EU, a sentiment he later softened. The biggest beneficiary of the Budget is the NHS, which is set to receive £20.5bn a year of extra funding. Hammond also announced another £1.7bn a year to smooth…

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the week

A few years ago, roads teeming with autonomous cars seemed wildly implausible – but there again, so did mobile phones a few years before that. It’s pretty clear the revolution is under way. This week, Waymo, the self-driving unit of Google’s parent company, Alphabet, was given the green light to test fully autonomous vehicles (with no human behind the wheel) on public roads in California. We know that Uber can’t wait to make use of all the route data it has acquired, and get rid of its drivers, with all their irksome demands for toilet breaks and paid holiday. The taxi firm Addison Lee declared last week that it will have self-driving cabs on the streets of London by 2021. The question is, what will this new world look like? Will…

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Controversy of the week Brazil finds its Trump “Jair Bolsonaro is a right-wing Brazilian who holds repulsive views,” said The New York Times. “He has said that if he had a homosexual son, he’d prefer him dead; that a female colleague in the parliament was too ugly to rape; that Afro-Brazilians are lazy and fat; that global warming amounts to ‘greenhouse fables’.” A former army captain, he has frequently expressed his admiration for the military dictatorship that ran Brazil between 1964 and 1985. And last Sunday, he was elected president of the world’s fourth largest democracy, beating his leftist rival, Fernando Haddad of the Workers’ Party, by 55% to 45%. Brazil is emerging from its worst-ever recession; a corruption scandal has engulfed much of its ruling class; and crime is sky-high, with…

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new civil service head

Mark Sedwill, the UK National Security Adviser, has been appointed Cabinet Secretary and head of the civil service. He replaces Sir Jeremy Heywood, who, owing to ill health, is stepping down from the role he held for six years. Sedwill, a veteran of the Foreign Office, has worked closely with Theresa May since 2013, when she made him her permanent secretary at the Home Office. As Cabinet Secretary, he will be her principal adviser. His appointment is unusual in so far as every other cabinet secretary since WWII has had a background in the Treasury.…

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fracking halted

Fracking at the UK’s only active shale gas site was halted this week, following the largest earth tremor since work began two weeks ago. The earthquake on Monday, which measured 1.1 on the Richter scale, prompted the firm Cuadrilla to halt work at the Lancashire site for 18 hours – the third such pause in four days. The firm was forced to stop fracking entirely in 2011 following a series of tremors in the area; under its current licence, it must halt work in the event of a tremor of 0.5-magnitude or more. None of the earthquakes so far have been powerful enough to be felt at ground level (see page 47).…

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spirit of the age

The head of Southampton’s student union came under fire last week for vowing to take down a “mural of white men” in the university senate room, “even if I have to paint over it myself”, on Twitter. Emily Dawes had apparently not realised that the mural, painted by Sir William Rothenstein in 1916, is a memorial to students killed in the First World War who were unable to complete their degrees. She has since apologised. British pet owners will spend £1.7bn this year on pets, and it is millennials who are fuelling the boom. According to research group Mintel, more than half of 19- to 38-year-olds say they’d rather cut back on spending on themselves than their pets; two out of five would spend as much on a Christmas gift for…