Don't miss

Replay


LATEST SHOWS

MEDIAWATCH

Monumental mix up at Oscars

Read more

THE DEBATE

Do Scandals Matter? Fillon, Le Pen cry 'witch-hunt" over corruption probes (part 1)

Read more

THE DEBATE

Do Scandals Matter? Fillon, Le Pen cry 'witch-hunt" over corruption probes (part 2)

Read more

THE INTERVIEW

Philippines: Has Duterte’s ‘war on drugs’ gone too far?

Read more

FOCUS

America's future strategy in Southeast Asia? Local US allies keen for answers

Read more

THE OBSERVERS

Ukraine's illegal mafia-run amber mining; and the street art being destroyed by authorities in Brazil

Read more

EYE ON AFRICA

Anti-immigrant protests erupt in South African capital

Read more

IN THE PAPERS

White House silence over Kansas bar shooting angers India

Read more

IN THE PAPERS

Oscars: Not so white anymore, but very political

Read more

IN THE PAPERS

An overview of the stories making the French and international newspaper headlines. From Monday to Friday live at 7.20 am and 9.20 am Paris time.

Latest update : 2012-07-03

Grim news and alarming psychoanalysis

Syrian President Bashar al-Assad apologises...to Turkey for shooting down a fighter jet. Also, Human Rights Watch investigates Syian torture centres. And there’s speculation about criminal prosecution of the Barclays bankers who rigged interest rates. For one paper that would not be enough, given the distorting effects that unconstrained power has on the brain activity of those running a virtually unregulated banking industry.

Human Rights Watch has investigated two dozen torture centres across Syria, and The Brisbane Times highlights witness accounts in which we read of stapled chests and electric shocks.

In the UK, the Barclays bankers responsible for rigging inter-banking rates could be prosecuted for criminal behaviour. The Independent argued the Chairman’s head should not have rolled though, as interest rate manipulation would have been below his level of oversight. CEO Bob Diamond should be the one to go. (Someone was listening, as Diamond has since stepped down).

In an essay on The Psychology of Greed, the Guardian cites studies which look into the effects of power on the human brain. Bank bosses are more powerful than most elected officials – particularly after decades of deregulation, and holding onto power changes brains by boosting testosterone, which increases the dopamine in the brain's reward systems.

While moderate amounts encourage people to be more strategic and bolder, the logic goes, extreme forms distort personalities, making them egocentric, unempathetic and greedy for financial, sexual and material rewards.

All the while, the excess of unchecked power dulls their perception of risk, even when a storm is brewing.

By Kyle G. Brown

COMMENT(S)

Archives

2017-02-27 Oscars (Academy Awards)

White House silence over Kansas bar shooting angers India

IN THE WORLD PAPERS - Thursday, February 27: Politicised, anticlimactic and finally, inclusive, this year's Academy Awards ceremony was anything but ordinary. And in India,...

Read more

2017-02-27 Oscars (Academy Awards)

Oscars: Not so white anymore, but very political

IN THE FRENCH PAPERS - Monday, February 27: There's a lot of focus on the ongoing legal headaches for two of the French presidential candidates: François Fillon and Marine le...

Read more

2017-02-24 Syria

Xenophobic attacks in South Africa cause tension with Nigeria

INTERNATIONAL PAPERS - Fri. 24.02.17: Papers focus on the situation in Syria, where Turkish-backed troops have managed to recapture Al Bab, a major stronghold of the Islamic...

Read more

2017-02-24 François Bayrou

A cow named Fine, star of the Paris Agriculture Fair

FRENCH PAPERS - Fri. 24.02.17: Papers continue to react to an alliance in the political centre between François Bayrou from the MoDem party and Emmanuel Macron from the "En...

Read more

2017-02-23 Mexico

'Pineapple Pizza Tests Limits of Presidential Power in Iceland'

INTERNATIONAL PAPERS - Thurs. 23.02.17: US officials receive a "chilly" welcome in Mexico with tensions running high over immigration. Meanwhile, British papers wonder if their...

Read more