June 27, 2016

Brexit Hangover Edition




We hope you enjoyed Pride Weekend! Check out some of the photos and highlights from New York’s Gay Pride Parade



Brexit: Scotland Seizes Historic Moment To Troll England

Britain faced multiple leadership crises over the weekend as it turned out that no one – not even those that campaigned for a Brexit – had a plan about what to do now. Well, almost no one. Scottish First Minister and Angela Merkel look-a-like Nicola Sturgeon seized on the chaos in London to make a case for why Scotland, which voted to stay in the EU, should reconsider independence. The Brexit vote also cast a shadow on Northern Ireland’s peace process as Irish nationalists there are leveraging the initiative to unite with the rest of Ireland. 

Europe Handles Crisis Just As You Would Expect It To

The EU reacted with its characteristic maturity of a four-year old. Foreign ministers of the founding six members urged Britain to get on with it and invoke Article 50 (the exit process) and Carl Bildt, former Swedish prime minister and senior EU figure, lectured Britain on acting mature while simultaneously threatening to de facto eject it from the EU. You can’t blame them for overreacting though as many face populist, anti-EU pressure within their own countries.

‘Mild Chaos’ As England Faces Political Turmoil

Things went from bad to worse in London over the weekend as the British people went through the five stages of grief almost simultaneously.

Major figures who campaigned for Brexit, most notably former London Mayor Boris Johnson, were quiet over the weekend as they tried to figure out what this actually means. In a traditional British pessimistic fashion they didn’t bother to write down a plan in the event they won the election. Johnson is now a front runner to replace PM David Cameron who resigned after the vote. 

The opposition Labour Party promptly set about devouring itself with almost half the shadow government resigning in protest at alleged sabotage against the Remain campaign run by its leader Jeremy Corbyn. A shadow government is like Model United Nations for the opposition party, it has no power other than making those involved feel important. Corbyn faces a no-confidence vote by MPs within his party who think he won’t be able to win a sooner-than-expected general election. 

The 800-pound racist gorilla in the room, aka Nigel Farage of UKIP, spent the weekend intoxicated on his own success (or pints of beer) mumbling things about “independence” and taking his country back. Meanwhile, over three million shocked Brits signed a petition to have a revote.  

Editorial: The English Have Placed A Bomb Under The Irish Peace Process



Spain’s Failed Elections, Part Dos

The Spanish had some major déjà vu over the weekend when their second attempt to hold elections in six months failed to produce a clear winner. Their December 2015 election created an uncanny similar deadlock, and after six months of political stalemate that forced the country to hold the first repeat election in its democratic history, they arrived on nearly the same results.  With 99% of the votes counted, it looks like Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy’s conservative Popular Party came in first place but without a parliamentary majority, while the Socialist Workers’ Party (PSOE) landed in a very close second. To break the deadlock, Rajoy and Socialist leader Pedro Sánchez will either have to come to some sort of deal to keep the Popular Party in power, or they could go for Round Three in another six months. 


Iraq Says They Took Back Falluja And Mean It This Time

Iraq’s Lieutenant General Abdul-Wahab al-Saadi said that the country successfully recovered the city of Falluja from ISIS, and all it took was a month-long operation that drove out 80,000 people and destroyed over a third of the city. Iraqi Prime Minister Haidar al-Abadi previously claimed the city had been captured but those claims turned out to be premature, so maybe hold off on the party hats. While recapturing Falluja is a strategic milestone against ISIS, the mission did set off a humanitarian disaster. It is uncertain how and when the tens of thousands of displaced Falluja residents will be able to return. 



Copa America: Chile won the Copa America for the second year in a row. They beat Argentina 4-2 in penalty kicks. 

Madagascar: A grenade explosion killed at least two people and wounded another 70 at a stadium in Antananarivo. Officials are calling this a “terrorist act” that occurred during Madagascar’s national day celebrations, but no arrests have been made. 
Beijing: An international study led by Beijing-based researchers discovered that the city is sinking nearly four inches per year. The Chinese city has had to deal with extremely polluted rivers and blinding smog over the years, but news that Beijing is sinking comes as an added bonus. 


Russian Health Ministry Bans Patients From Dying

Russian patients can rest knowing they’re in good hands now that the Russian Ministry of Health “bans” dying patients in an effort to improve their stats. Hospitals in the central Perm region now display signs reminding staff of the new requirements: doctors must reduce the number of deaths to only one per week to keep from spoiling their statistics. The Ministry also put a cap on ambulance rides, saying there should be no more than 11 ambulance calls per week. So if you need an ambulance, it’s best to wait until Monday to call. 


Yes, I want to sound marginally more intelligent: