Political risk must-reads
Political risk must-reads
Eurasia Groupâ€™s weekly selection of essential reading for the political-risk junkie — presented in no particular order. As always, feel free to give us your feedback or selections by tweeting at us viaÂ @EurasiaGroupÂ orÂ @ianbremmer.
â€śThe Tragedy of Argentina: A Century of Declineâ€ť — the Economist
Last month, the Argentine peso saw its value depreciate by more than 20 percent. But 100 years ago, after 43 years of consecutive GDP growth of 6 percent annually, Argentina was considered a leading land of opportunity. What changed after World War One? Where is the country headed now?
â€śAl-Qaeda Rebels in Syria Tell Christians to Pay up or Dieâ€ť — Aryn Baker, Time
ISIS, an extremist Islamist group that even mainstream al Qaeda has disassociated from, is in control of Raqqa, a northern Syrian city. They have left Christians in their jurisdiction with a painful choice: pay up, convert, or face death. The payment scheme, which is scaled based on income level and the value of gold, is part of ISISâ€™s attempt to create an Islamic kingdom with laws that date back to the time of Mohammad.
â€śHas the Venezuelan Government Helped or Hurt the Countryâ€™s Poor?â€ť — Max Ehrenfreund, Washington Post Wonkblog
As the street calms in Venezuela, it looks more likely that Nicolas Maduro will remain in power…for now. The economic realities are grim, with a national economy in crisis, and an official inflation rate of 56 percent.
â€śFor Rich, â€™13 Was Good for Making, and Spending, Moneyâ€ť — Julie Creswell, New York Times
Over the last decade, the register of billionaires climbed 80 percent (to 1,682). And last year was particularly kind to the uber-rich. In a survey of the worldâ€™s 0.1 percenters, only 4 percent said that they wound up worth less over the course of 2013.
â€śIndiaâ€™s Election by Mind-Blowing Numbersâ€ť — Suryatapa Bhattacharya, WSJ blog
An estimated 100 million extra voters are eligible to vote next month, compared to Indiaâ€™s last general election. There are an estimated 814.5 million eligible voters. Eleven million people will help conduct the polling and make sure it runs smoothly.
â€śNASA Photo Shows North Korea Kept in the Dark at Nightâ€ť– Sean Breslin, The Weather Channel
North and South Koreaâ€™s power consumption is night and day. Astronauts on the International Space Station have taken a night image of North and South Korea that puts the two countriesâ€™ energy usage into stark relief. South Koreaâ€™s per capita power consumption is 10,162 kilowatt hours. North Koreaâ€™s is 739.
Lastly, are you curious if youâ€™ve got the first name of a Democrat or Republican?Â This database will let you know how your first name ranks.