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The Economist Continental Europe Edition

The Economist Continental Europe Edition 04/29/2017

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 Emmanuel Macron topped the first round of the presidential election in France and will meet Marine Le Pen in a runoff on May 7th. Markets were buoyed by Mr Macron’s performance: opinion polls put the former economy minister well ahead of his nationalist rival. A few days before the vote a policeman was killed by an Islamist on the Champs Élysées in Paris. Turkey broadened its purge of people in public positions who the government claims belong to the movement allegedly behind last year’s failed coup. Some 1,000 people, mostly police officers, were arrested, and another 2,200 were being sought. Another 9,000 police were suspended from duty. Power surge A court in South Africa knocked back the government’s plan to spend as much as 1trn rand ($76bn) building nuclear power stations with help…

5 мин.
how to have a better death

IN 1662 a London haberdasher with an eye for numbers published the first quantitative account of death. John Graunt tallied causes such as “the King’s Evil”, a tubercular disease believed to be cured by the monarch’s touch. Others seem uncanny, even poetic. In 1632, 15 Londoners “made away themselves”, 11 died of “grief” and a pair fell to “lethargy”. Graunt’s book is a glimpse of the suddenness and terror of death before modern medicine. It came early, too: until the 20th century the average human lived about as long as a chimpanzee. Today science and economic growth mean that no land mammal lives longer. Yet an unintended consequence has been to turn dying into a medical experience. How, when and where death happens has changed over the past century. As late as…

3 мин.
under audit

AMERICA’S tax system is a disaster. It is a self-defeating combination of fairly high tax rates and generous exemptions that mean little money is actually raised. It is mind-bogglingly complex: the income-tax code is so knotty that America has as many tax preparers per 1,000 people as Indonesia has doctors. It distorts behaviour: American firms have at least $1trn-worth of cash stashed abroad to avoid the taxman. Change is hard, but not impossible. In 1986 Ronald Reagan and lawmakers from both parties proved that, with sufficient patience, persistence and willingness to compromise, it can happen. Their bill slashed tax rates while broadening the tax base so much that no revenue was lost. In fact, the money raised from corporations rose after Reagan signed the bill. This newspaper would cheer heartily if…

3 мин.
waive hello

TIME is running out for Donald Trump to make up his mind about the Iran nuclear deal of 2015. Before May 17th President Trump must decide whether to continue Barack Obama’s suspension of nuclear-related sanctions—Iran’s reward for constraining its nuclear programme. If Mr Trump does not issue a waiver, sanctions will snap back. The other signatories to the deal will see America as the aggressor. Unless Iran goes on to violate the deal flagrantly, they will not follow suit. The chances are that Iran would then slowly crank its programme up again. That would be a terrible outcome. The Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), as the deal is known, has got Iran to mothball most of its uranium-enrichment centrifuges and redesign its nuclear reactor at Arak to produce much less…

4 мин.
polar bare

THOSE who doubt the power of human beings to change Earth’s climate should look to the Arctic, and shiver. There is no need to pore over records of temperatures and atmospheric carbon-dioxide concentrations. The process is starkly visible in the shrinkage of the ice that covers the Arctic ocean. In the past 30 years, the minimum coverage of summer ice has fallen by half; its volume has fallen by three-quarters. On current trends, the Arctic ocean will be largely ice-free in summer by 2040. Climate-change sceptics will shrug. Some may even celebrate: an ice-free Arctic ocean promises a shortcut for shipping between the Pacific coast of Asia and the Atlantic coasts of Europe and the Americas, and the possibility of prospecting for perhaps a fifth of the planet’s undiscovered supplies of…

4 мин.
the wars of independence

ON MAY 6th 1997 Gordon Brown, freshly installed as Britain’s chancellor of the exchequer, announced that he was giving the Bank of England the responsibility for setting interest rates. The bank would be charged with meeting an inflation target set by the government. The move was hailed as a political masterstroke. It gave substance to the new Labour government’s claims to economic competence. Long-term borrowing costs fell sharply. The pound soared. The bank’s governor, Eddie George, was delighted. But joy was not unconfined. Within weeks Mr Brown, wary of an over-mighty central bank, stripped it of its responsibilities for bank regulation and public-debt management. Twenty years on, some fear that central banks have become too powerful. The Bank of England is back in charge of bank regulation. The European Central Bank (ECB)…