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Graffiti probably Banksy, denouncing the conditions in which prisoners have been detained in Guantanamo. Photo Eadmundo

The lesson of ‘The White Ribbon’ for today: How tolerant societies can drift into hatred

Michael Haneke's allegorical 2009 film showed how a peaceful society can be shattered within a single generation. It's a lesson for us now in a world drifting toward populism and violence.
Inmates, members of MS-13 and Barrio 18 gangs, wait upon arrival at the maximum security prison in Zacatecoluca, 65 kilometres east of San Salvador, on August 9, 2017. Marvin RECINOS / AFP

What gangs tell us about the world we live in

Imaginaries of gangs as inherent forms of brutal anarchy promote particular political agendas and obscure the ways gangs can reveal the underlying dynamics of the contexts within which they emerge.
Venezuelan President Nicolás Maduro created a new cryptocurrency called the ‘Petro’ to combat hyperinflation. Reuters/Carlos Garcia Rawlins

Is authoritarianism bad for the economy? Ask Venezuela – or Hungary or Turkey

When an elected leader turns autocratic, the economy tends to suffer. That's because, in a functioning democracy, economic policy is made jointly, with lawmakers playing a key role.
Thousands of schools have been targeted and destroyed as part of the Syrian conflict. Abed Kontar/EPA

Why schools become battlegrounds during conflict

Schools and students are often targeted during times of armed conflict. Abducted children can be recruited as soldiers and schools are ideal locations for military headquarters.
Those living through the first Renaissance recognised that their age offered blinding possibilities, but that any gains would have to be achieved amid relentless shocks. The same is true today. Shutterstock

Pessimism is rife, optimism naive. Activism is the best tool for now

The first Renaissance struggled with the same doubts and uncertainties and blinding possibilities that we face today. Any gains we make will have to be achieved amid relentless shocks.
Australian and New Zealand dairy farmers need to get used to the low prices for milk as they represent the new norm in global markets. Dan Peled/AAP

Milk price cuts reflect the reality of sweeping changes in global dairy market

Cooperatives like Murray Goulburn and Fonterra and dairy farmers need to accept that lower milk prices will be the new normal in a more competitive global market.

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