John Lloyd

The hard challenges for Europe, an overly soft continent

Christine Lagarde, managing director of the International Monetary Fund, gave an interview to the Guardian last Friday. In it, she offered some advice to the people of Greece. A succinct summation: “Stop whining.”

Facebook’s poor, huddled masses

“Whosoever hath, to him shall be given”, said Matthew (13:12) – a text for our times, and if it were a Facebook status, I would like it to death.

Beppe Grillo: The anti-politics politician

For some three decades, an Italian comedian named Beppe Grillo has satirized – viciously, at high volume, naming names – the corruption of Italian politics. Last week, in Italian elections, he won the honor of being a part of the very thing he mocks.

Europe’s new, suicidal normal

The world into which the new president of France, François Hollande, stepped this week is a suicidal one. Searching for a vivid image of Euro-desolation, the news media have lit upon suicides. Two suicides last month have stood out.

A London divided against itself

London voted for its mayor last week and voted, narrowly, for Boris. Boris Johnson was the Conservative incumbent, a 47-year-old upper-middle class, Eton- and Oxford-educated former journalist, a classics-conversant, high-IQ prankster with a streak of political intelligence and ruthlessness that reportedly has Prime Minister David Cameron worried for his job.