World View: Albania Refuses Syria Chemical Weapons Destruction

This morning's key headlines from GenerationalDynamics.com

  • Venezuela's congress votes to give Maduro dictatorial powers
  • Albania refuses Syria chemical weapons destruction
  • Executives watching porn are leading targets of hacker attacks

Venezuela's congress votes to give Maduro dictatorial powers

Maduro meets with enthusiastic voters
Maduro meets with enthusiastic voters

Venezuela's congress has voted in favor of granting President Nicolás Maduro emergency dictatorial policies. A second vote will occur next week to put the change into effect. Maduro had been one vote short of the number of votes needed but solved that problem by charging an opposite legislator with corruption, removing her from the legislature, and replacing her with someone from Maduro's Socialist Party. 

As we described last month in "26-Sep-13 World View -- Venezuela's economy approaches full-scale hyperinflation", the country is plagued by shortages of everything from milk and cooking oil to toothpaste and toilet paper. Maduro's government has now arrested more than 100 businessmen in a so-called crackdown on corruption and price-gouging. According to Maduro: 

"They are barbaric, these capitalist parasites! We have more than 100 of the bourgeoisie behind bars at the moment."

Thanks to massive overspending and vote-buying by Maduro and by his predecessor, Hugo Chávez, Venezuela's inflation rate is over 45%. It's thought that Maduro arranged for the new dictatorial powers because of elections being held in December. AP and Russia Today

Albania refuses Syria chemical weapons destruction

In what is being described as a snub to the United States, Albania has rejected a request to allow the destruction of Syria's chemical weapons to take place on Albania's soil. Albania was considered to be a good choice to host the destruction, since the country destroyed tons of its own chemical weapons in 2007 and 2012. 

Albania's prime minister Edi Rama announced the rejection on Friday, after four days of massive demonstrations by opposition activists in front of the prime minister's residency in Tirana. According to reports from Albania's government, the country had several things to gain by allowing the destruction on its soil: 

  • Albania would officially be a candidate for EU membership in December, and will become an EU member within four years.
  • Albania would receive 12 billion dollars, which is three times as much as its entire 2012 budget.
  • Albania would have a special status with the U.S., which would abolish the visa regime for Albanian citizens.
  • Albania would be a candidate to receive the Nobel Prize for Peace.

Albania's refusal has halted further work on the United Nations program to destroy Syria's chemical weapons, when the international agreement specifies that the 1,000 tonnes of weapons must be transported outside Syria by February 5, 2014, and destroyed by June 30, 2014. France and Belgium have been named as possible alternate locations. Albeu (Albania) and BBC

Executives watching porn are leading targets of hacker attacks

A new survey shows that a leading cause of corporate malware, which can permit a corporation's entire network to be hacked and compromised, comes from senior managers visiting X-rated porn sites with their desktop computers or mobile device. Watching porn on work computers is not rare. Nielsen reported that about 29 percent of working American adults watched porn on work computers in March 2010. Time

KEYS: Generational Dynamics, Venezuela, Nicolas Maduro, Hugo Chavez, Syria, Albania, Edi Rama, France, Belgium 

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