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Reversing the brain drain: why coronavirus could stop graduates moving to London | Rachel Connolly

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26 mai, par Rachel Connolly[ —]

This mass experiment in home working could mean young people no longer have to move to the south-east for jobs

My grandma, who lives in Derry, had never been to England until last year, so it was a great honour when she made the trip to London to visit me and my sister, who have both lived on the mainland (in one city or another) for the best part of a decade. We had “great craic” during her stay. We went to the big art galleries and museums, which everyone in the UK helps fund through their taxes, but many never get to visit; she accidentally attended a pro-Brexit protest; and she charmed the waiter of a pizza restaurant with what she calls her “Derry eyes”, striking because of their unusual blue and orange-yellow irises, which she has passed down to my mum, my siblings and me. She wore a lime green suit for the duration of her stay, like a very elegant leprechaun.

That was almost a year ago and I haven’t seen her in person since. I’m always a bit jealous of people for whom family get-togethers like these aren’t a rarity. As they are for many young people in the UK who grew up outside of the economic hub of the south-east, the job prospects in the region where I’m from are, shall we say, not great. So, like many young people, I moved away for university, then to London for work, and now my life feels awkwardly spread across several versions of home. I don’t see most of my family as much as I’d like and I feel like I move every few years for reasons not totally within my control. Now that a pandemic has prompted this mass experiment in working from home, I have been thinking more about whether it has to be this way.

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This is why we're proposing a wealth tax in Spain to help us out of this crisis | Pablo Echenique

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25 mai, par Pablo Echenique[ —]

My country’s recovery from coronavirus should be funded by those who can afford it. A new levy could generate €10bn

  • Pablo Echenique is a scientist and MP for Unidas Podemos

The Covid-19 pandemic has hit Spain hard. A decade of budgetary cuts to the country’s welfare system, in particular to healthcare, has exacerbated the crisis. Spain is a travelling hub and one of the major tourist destinations in the world. As a result, we are one of the countries hardest hit by coronavirus. There have been more than 27,000 confirmed deaths – and around 280,000 confirmed infections.

However, the Spanish government took prompt action and, after a very strict lockdown, the virus has been subdued and the unbearable stress on hospitals has been eased. The daily data now allows us to start to take stock of the damage caused and to plan for the future, while still keeping an alert eye on possible new outbreaks.

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Britain's pride in its past is not matched by any vision for its future | Timothy Garton Ash

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21 mai, par Timothy Garton Ash[ —]

There have been times over the last few weeks when it has felt as if we were living through a looped replay of Dad’s Army

Mirror, mirror on the wall, who is the fairest of them all? The Covid-19 crisis is a mirror held up to each nation. Some, such as Jacinda Ardern’s New Zealand, look very good indeed. Many have celebrated an unfamiliar unity, solidarity and selflessness, praising as distinctively Spanish, Italian or Danish the very same qualities that just across the frontier are being lauded as Portuguese, French or Swedish. Others, such as the United States and Poland, are tragically revealed as incapable of achieving national solidarity even when faced with such an external threat. Instead they appear more politically polarised than ever, like a man whose right arm is fully engaged in wrestling with his own left arm while a tiger mauls his back.

Related: Britain was led by Churchill then – it’s led by a Churchill tribute act now

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Could the 'liberal' Dutch have learned from Taiwan's approach to coronavirus? |

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19 mai, par Cha-Hsuan Liu and Jaap Bos[ —]

Taiwan’s Covid-19 measures could be seen as intrusive. But seven people have died there, compared with 5,000 in the Netherlands

The whole world has been struggling to contain the coronavirus and “flatten the curve”, but Taiwan has had no curve. Out of a population of 24 million, only 440 people have tested positive for Covid-19, and there have been just seven deaths. Compare that with the Netherlands: while it is similar in size to Taiwan with a population of 17 million, well over 5,000 lives have been lost to the virus.

What has made the difference? Clearly, the Netherlands is not an island that could cut itself off from the rest of world, lock down completely and thus contain the disease. Taiwan is – but Taiwan didn’t do that either.

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