Big Issues - the hands on the rudder
The first in a two-part special...
They say that media have short memories. So in the next two programs, Radio New Internationalist looks back over some of the big issues of 2007 that are set to get bigger in the next few years. This week: a selection of trends that are steering the world towards new horizons:
- World superpowers rise and fall. As the US enters its 11th hour as a world superpower, China, India and Europe are stepping in to scoop up economic, military and political allegiances. To cement its strength in foreign policy, the Chinese Government is substituting development aid for diplomacy. Nicola Bullard, a senior associate with Focus on the Global South, and Daniel Bibiero from the Mozambique NGO Justiça Ambiental investigate the results.
- Nature is being broken away by scientists and corporations. Governments say that nanotechnology is getting in the driver's seat to steer the next industrial revolution - fundamentally transforming every aspect of our lives. Business leaders predict that nano-industry may be worth one trillion US dollars in the next five years. Georgia Miller from Friends of the Earth Australia reveals the what, where and how nano works - from odour-eating socks to frightening new weapons for armies.
- Capitalism and its inequities intensify. Intellectual property is overtaking labour as a means of production, and the Majority World is striking back. Jon Ungphakorn, a former Thai Senator, and now a prominent social activist on public health and HIV/AIDs, explains why the Thai government is putting its people before profitable patents, and Abbott pharmaceutical company's vicious response.
- Truth is becoming hard to find as an army of professionals are being hired to steer society away from the facts. John Stauber, from the Center for Media and Democracy, whose organization publishes PR Watch in the United States, talks about the experts and scientists who are prepared to mortgage their professional souls to companies... and sell short the public interest in the process.
Big issues deserve big musical sounds - and today's are from a broad range of countries and performers selected from the World Music Network's Riverboat Records series.
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