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ENCORE!

Actress Helen Mirren on TV honours and tackling sexism

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FOCUS

Teething problems for French President Macron's party

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THE INTERVIEW

Libya's Haftar vows to deal with terrorists 'through weapons'

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INSIDE THE AMERICAS

USA: Fierce battle over Kentucky's only abortion clinic

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IN THE PAPERS

'Socks and selfies deep': Canadians slam Rolling Stone's Trudeau tribute

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IN THE PAPERS

Panda-monium! French zoo awaiting rare panda birth

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BUSINESS DAILY

Can Facebook keep growing its earnings?

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THE INTERVIEW

Qatar 'financing and supporting terrorism', Egypt FM says

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MEDIAWATCH

French Riviera's raging fires

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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

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Archives

2017-07-27 Donald Trump

'Socks and selfies deep': Canadians slam Rolling Stone's Trudeau tribute

IN THE WORLD PAPERS - Thursday, July 27: Commentators from all sides of the political spectrum react fervently to Donald Trump's ban on transgender troops. Across the world,...

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2017-07-27 French Parliament

Panda-monium! French zoo awaiting rare panda birth

IN THE FRENCH PAPERS - Thursday, July 27: French MPs begin discussing a controversial ethics bill that could strip them of a €5,000 monthly stipend, among other proposals....

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2017-07-26 healthcare reform

Western men 'less fertile' due to modern living, scientists warn

IN THE WORLD PAPERS - Wednesday, July 26: We take a look at reactions after Senate Republicans finally push through a vote on discussing Trumpcare. Also, Hezbollah says it has...

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2017-07-26 Emmanuel Macron

A 'crazy gamble': Luc Besson's €197m blockbuster 'Valerian' hits French cinemas

IN THE FRENCH PAPERS - Wednesday, July 26: The papers review Emmanuel Macron's success with key Libyan leaders after a fruitful Paris meeting. Also, commemorations take place for...

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2017-07-25 Jared Kushner

'Sleep tight beautiful boy': Charlie Gard's parents to take him off life support

IN THE WORLD PAPERS - Tuesday, July 25: We take a look at reactions after Jared Kushner's appearance before the US Senate yesterday. Elsewhere, the Indian and Chinese press mount...

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