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EYE ON AFRICA

Donors pledge millions at Uganda refugee summit

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MEDIAWATCH

Depp plumbs depths of bad taste

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THE WORLD THIS WEEK

France's new frontman, America's absent center, May's Brexit gambit, Saudi royal reshuffle, after Mosul & Raqqa fall

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REVISITED

Senegal’s Casamance hopes for new era of peace

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THE INTERVIEW

FARC disarmament a 'historic day' for Colombia, says president

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FASHION

Cruise collections: All aboard for Dior and Chanel's latest fashions

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ENCORE!

Colombia comes to France

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#THE 51%

The last taboo: Helping women and girls. Period.

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DOWN TO EARTH

Who benefits when the ice caps melt?

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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

2017-06-23 Brexit

'Philando Castile's death poses questions that still need answering'

INTERNATIONAL PAPERS - Fri. 23.06.17: British Prime Minister Theresa May gets a warm welcome at a two-day EU summit in Brussels, but many papers expect a clash to come....

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2017-06-23 weather

When it's hot, how much skin can you show at work?

FRENCH PAPERS - Fri. 23.06.17: One year after the Brexit referendum, many French papers are still holding out hope that the UK will remain in the EU. Meanwhile, the photo of the...

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2017-06-22 Saudi Arabia

Saudi Arabia's 'Prince of Chaos'

INTERNATIONAL PAPERS - Thurs. 22.06.17: The Washington Post gets a glimpse of the Senate Republican plan to replace the Affordable Care Act - criticised as a "stingier" version...

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2017-06-22 Emmanuel Macron

Macron's government, take two: 'Reviewed and corrected'

FRENCH PRESS - Thurs. 22.06.2017: The re-appointment of the French government following legislative elections is usually just a formality, but Emmanuel Macron had to make several...

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2017-06-21 Portugal

Portugal's papers soul-searching after deadly fires

IN THE WORLD PAPERS - Thursday, June 21: Portuguese papers are soul-searching today as they try to make sense of devastating fires that have killed dozens of people. Also, the...

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