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3 Things You Shouldn't Worry About

3 Things You Shouldn't Worry About

Don't let a US-China trade war, trouble in Kashmir, the showdown in Hong Kong, the DRC's Ebola emergency, new warnings from Iran and North Korea, the Venezuelan embargo, a Russian crackdown, Brexit risks, and the toxic American political culture persuade you that all the news this week was bad.

Here are three new pieces of good news:


Moscow's New Graffiti Rules: No need to fear that your upcoming visit to the Russian capital will expose you to offensive graffiti. New rules ensure that Moscow street artists must avoid depictions of violence, sex, naughty words, drugs, tobacco, explosives and anything else not directly related to science, sport, art, historical events, or the popularization of "outstanding personalities." Russian graffiti artists, world renowned for their respect for local authorities, will definitely obey these new rules.

Traffic in Lagos: Nor is their need to fear that your drive across Lagos will be impacted by the kind of late-night traffic jam the city experienced this week. Confusion reigned when drivers were confronted with a glass-sided truck with a seated man inside tossing cash at women dancing around stripper poles in their underwear. Turns out this was a one-time problem created by Augustine Kelechi, better known in Nigeria by the stage name Tekno, who responded to complaints on social media by explaining that he and the dancers were merely travelling between locations while shooting a music video. This (probably) won't happen again.

Squawkzilla: Scientists searching the bottom of a lake in New Zealand have found the fossilized leg bones of an ancient parrot they say was probably flightless, carnivorous, and half the height of an adult human. That's tall enough, an Australian paleontologist helpfully noted this week, "to pick the belly button lint out of your belly button." Signal estimates just a 7 percent chance that you will encounter a bird this size as you travel through New Zealand this weekend.

Carbon has a bad rep, but did you know it's a building block of life? As atoms evolved, carbon trapped in CO2 was freed, giving way to the creation of complex molecules that use photosynthesis to convert carbon to food. Soon after, plants, herbivores, and carnivores began populating the earth and the cycle of life began.

Learn more about how carbon created life on Earth in the second episode of Eni's Story of CO2 series.

As we enter the homestretch of the US presidential election — which is set to be the most contentious, and possibly contested, in generations — Americans are also voting on 35 seats up for grabs in a battle for the control of the Senate. The 100-member body is currently held 53-47 by the Republican Party, but many individual races are wide open, and the Democrats are confident they can flip the upper chamber of Congress.

Either way, the result will have a profound impact not only on domestic policy, but also on US foreign relations and other issues with global reach. Here are a few areas where what US senators decide reverberates well beyond American shores.

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On September 23, GZERO Media — in partnership with Microsoft and Eurasia Group — gathered global experts to discuss global recovery from the coronavirus pandemic in a livestream panel. Our panel for the discussion Crisis Response & Recovery: Reimagining while Rebuilding, included:

  • Brad Smith, President, Microsoft
  • Ian Bremmer, President and Founder, Eurasia Group & GZERO Media
  • Jeh Johnson, Partner, Paul, Weiss, Rifkind, Wharton & Garrison, LLP and former Secretary of Homeland Security.
  • John Frank, Vice President, UN Affairs at Microsoft
  • Susan Glasser, staff writer and Washington columnist, The New Yorker (moderator)

Special appearances by UN Secretary-General António Guterres, European Central Bank chief Christine Lagarde, and comedian/host Trevor Noah.

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Jon Lieber, who leads Eurasia Group's coverage of political and policy developments in Washington, offers insights on the Supreme Court vacancy:

Will Senate Republicans, who stopped a Supreme Court nomination in 2016, because it was too close to an election, pay a political price for the change in tactics this time around?

Not only do I think they won't pay a political price, I think in many cases, they're going to benefit. Changing the balance of power on the Supreme Court has been a career-long quest for many conservatives and many Republicans. And that's why you've seen so many of them fall in line behind the President's nomination before we even know who it is.

At this point, do Senate Democrats have any hope of stopping President Trump from filling the ninth seat on the Supreme Court?

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In a special GZERO Media livestream on global response and recovery amid the COVID-19 pandemic, Eurasia Group & GZERO Media president Ian Bremmer discussed the difference between Europe's unified approach to economic stimulus and the deeply divided and political nature of the current conversation in the US. While initial stimulus support was bipartisan, there is little chance of Democrats and Republicans coming together again ahead of the November 3 presidential election. "It's red state versus blue state. President Trump's saying that coronavirus isn't so bad if you take the blue states out. He's president of the blue states, you can't take the blue states out," Bremmer told moderator Susan Glasser of The New Yorker.

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Panel: How will the world recover from COVID-19?

UNGA Livestream