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Archive for October, 2009

links for 2009-10-30

  • By insisting on the break-up of the ING Group into its banking and insurance divisions – and on it divesting its US direct savings arm – Ms Kroes set a welcome precedent this week. She made a troublesome too-big-to-fail institution shrink.

    The US, meanwhile, is joining the UK and others in proceeding in the opposite direction. Rather than making the Citigroups and Deutsche Banks of the world get smaller, they are bolstering them and preparing to deal with them next time they sink.

    As Terry Smith, chief executive of the broker Tullett Prebon and a former banking analyst, puts it, this is “like the designer of the Titanic arguing that the provision of extra lifeboats would solve the problem”.

  • For many decades, through economic ups and downs, the United States has had one big consolation and wellspring of faith in the future: the second-to-none American system of higher education, with universities dominating the world in new research and new horizons.

    American higher ed is still second to none. But it’s stalled out in recession and cutbacks. And Asian higher education is storming to the fore. Billions and billions are being poured into universities in China and beyond. Giant ambitions. Giant resources.

    This hour, On Point: Rising Asia challenges the American university.

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links for 2009-10-29

  • Suddenly, the garish burlesque of hair metal was rendered immediately irrelevant by grunge, and pop culture never looked back. The rarefied ’80s tendency by some artists to take cultural icons more seriously — Watchmen, The Dark Knight, Batman: Year One — was just the preamble to a new generation of brooding, tortured anti-heroes incapable of enjoying life — and, by extension, making the enjoyment of life seem childish.

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links for 2009-10-28

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links for 2009-10-27

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links for 2009-10-25

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links for 2009-10-22

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links for 2009-10-21

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