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The Economist Continental Europe Edition

The Economist Continental Europe Edition 03/11/2017

The Economist is the premier source for the analysis of world business and current affairs, providing authoritative insight and opinion on international news, world politics, business, finance, science and technology, as well as overviews of cultural trends and regular Special reports on industries and countries.

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The Economist Newspaper Limited - Europe
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8 мин.
the world this week

Politics Donald Trump signed a revised executive order to implement a travel ban on citizens from six Muslim-majority countries. Iraqis were taken off the list, as the administration conceded that they have been crucial in the fight against terror. Republicans who had condemned the original order fell in line to support the new ban, which comes into force on March 16th. Jeff Sessions, the attorney-general, recused himself from an investigation into Russian attempts to influence last year’s election, after admitting that he had spoken to the Russian ambassador during the campaign. As allegations swirled about Russian links to his team, Mr Trump said that Barack Obama had ordered his phones to be tapped, but offered no evidence. Republicans in the House of Representatives unveiled a bill to replace Obamacare. Among other things, it…

4 мин.
quantum leaps

A BATHING cap that can watch individual neurons, allowing others to monitor the wearer’s mind. A sensor that can spot hidden nuclear submarines. A computer that can discover new drugs, revolutionise securities trading and design new materials. A global network of communication links whose security is underwritten by unbreakable physical laws. Such—and more—is the promise of quantum technology. All this potential arises from improvements in scientists’ ability to trap, poke and prod single atoms and wispy particles of light called photons. Today’s computer chips get cheaper and faster as their features get smaller, but quantum mechanics says that at tiny enough scales, particles sail through solids, short-circuiting the chip’s innards. Quantum technologies come at the problem from the other direction. Rather than scale devices down, quantum technologies employ the unusual behaviours…

3 мин.
spreadsheets v politics

AT JUST 68 pages, the spring budget Philip Hammond published on March 8th was less than half the length of last year’s. Blessedly short on the gimmicks favoured by many of his predecessors in the Treasury, its most significant chapter was on official forecasts. The economy has done much better than expected since the Brexit referendum last June (see page 31): it is forecast to grow by 2% this year, up from the 1.4% predicted in November and well ahead of the recession many feared. Yet the modest, good-news budget got a dreadful reception. Mr Hammond announced higher taxes for self-employed people, which broke a manifesto pledge and infuriated an important Conservative constituency. The criticism is unjustified. The tax plan makes economic sense, and with Brexit on the horizon it is…

4 мин.

HAVE investors become irrationally exuberant? That is the biggest question hanging over global stockmarkets. Despite tumultuous politics across much of the rich world, share prices are reaching ever loftier heights. After breaking the 20,000 barrier in January, the Dow Jones Industrial Average swiftly passed 21,000 earlier this month. In Britain the FTSE 100 has been notching up fresh records, too. The MSCI World Index has hit an all-time high. At first sight, the warning signals are flashing. The recent flotation of Snap, an internet firm that is yet to make a profit, brought back memories of the dotcom boom; its shares soared by 44% on their first day of trading (although they have fallen back since). By historical standards, valuations in the American market are worryingly dear. The cyclically adjusted price-earnings…

4 мин.
one china, many meanings

FEW diplomatic sophisms are as skilfully worded as America’s “one-China policy”. Mere repetition by American officials that their country sticks to it has helped more than anything else to keep the peace between two nuclear-armed powers. Were America to reject the policy, mainland China would be enraged. Anti-American riots would erupt. The government in Beijing might even respond by launching a military attack on Taiwan, or American forces in the region. The global economy would shudder. Millions of lives would be threatened. Small wonder, then, that pulses quickened on both sides of the Pacific when Donald Trump, as president-elect, questioned the policy. (“I don’t know why we have to be bound by a one-China policy unless we make a deal with China having to do with other things, including trade,” he…

3 мин.
in praise of quinoa

PEOPLE are funny about food. Throughout history they have mocked others for eating strange things. In 1755 Samuel Johnson’s dictionary defined oats as “a grain, which in England is generally given to horses, but in Scotland supports the people”. Nineteenth-century Japanese nationalists dismissed Western culture as bata kusai, or “stinking of butter”. Unkind people today deride Brits as “limeys”, Mexicans as “beaners” and French people as “frogs”. And food-related insults often have a political tinge. George Orwell complained that socialism was unpopular because it attracted “every fruit-juice drinker, nudist, sandal-wearer [and] sex-maniac…in England”. In many countries today, politicians who wish to imply that their rivals have lost touch with ordinary voters sneer that they are latte-drinkers, muesli-munchers or partial to quinoa. This South American grain gets a particularly bad rap. To…