North Pole servers hacked!

North Pole servers hacked!

Bad news, Christmas fans: Santa has been hacked! Your GZERO correspondents were just settling down for a long winter's nap when we stumbled on this trove of stolen emails from the servers of the SNC (Saint Nicholas Cooperative.) Here's what the world leaders you know, love, and loath are asking for this Christmas:


Xi Jinping – Mr. Santa, I am told you have lists. Lists of those who follow rules and those who do not. If you want continued access to the factories of the People's Republic (which, of course, produce far more cheaply than your elves), we require you to share this data with us. Also, as I see you are in the surveillance market, perhaps we may offer you enhanced tools that can help to make your nice and naughty lists much, much more… detailed.

Donald Trump – Kringle, you have problems. The naughty list is getting longer and longer, and you do not have enough lumps of coal. We are looking very strongly at this, and I can help. There will be tremendous, tremendous coal for you. I want you to do me a favor though. What do you have on, say, Buttigieg? That punk has been naughty at some point. I want to know about that.

The Democratic National Committee – Nick! We'd actually like to know about your returns policy. You see, we thought Donald Trump's candidacy back in 2016 was the greatest gift imaginable for us. Just let us know where we can drop him off.

Vladimir Putin – Let's see… Ukraine… Syria… US elections. Being naughty seems to have paid off quite handsomely over the past few years. I have nothing to request of you.

Nicolas Maduro – Estimado Papa Noel! Juan Guaido's fizzled insurgency is pretty much all I could have asked for this year – gracias! But if you're still feeling generous, please leave my top generals a nice bottle of rum, top up their offshore bank accounts, and tell them it was from me.

Scotland Greetings, Saint Nick! This year, we're in the market for a big, beautiful wall along our southern border.

Emmanuel Macron – Cher Santa, I would like very much to catch a train, any working train, out of town.

Benjamin Netanyahu – I know, I know. But US evangelicals love me so much I'm hoping you'll read this anyway. This Christmas/Hanukkah, I'd love a strong margin of victory in my Likud party's upcoming leadership contest, and if you're feeling extra generous, a win in next year's elections: Did I mention that I'm allergic to courtrooms?

Mark Zuckerberg – Nick, just following up: you got the naughty/nice data on all 2.4 billion of our users in time, yes? Pls confirm.

We believe in access for everyone.

https://ad.doubleclick.net/ddm/trackimp/N6024.4218512GZEROMEDIA/B26379324.311531246;dc_trk_aid=504469522;dc_trk_cid=156468981;ord=[timestamp];dc_lat=;dc_rdid=;tag_for_child_directed_treatment=;tfua=;gdpr=${GDPR};gdpr_consent=${GDPR_CONSENT_755};ltd=?
Visa: We believe in access for everyone. Image of a small, diverse group of people, smiling

Gaps in economic opportunities have made it hard for all individuals to take part in the global payments ecosystem. To address those gaps, society needs public policies to empower citizens, small businesses, and economies. That’s why, in 2021, the Visa Economic Empowerment Institute (VEEI) started conducting research and publishing reports about fostering digital equity and inclusion, unlocking growth through trade, and imagining an open future for payments. In 2022, we hope you’ll visit the VEEI for insights and data on the future of inclusive economic policies. See our newest stories here.

A year of Biden

Joe Biden’s first year as US president included two major historic accomplishments and a series of (often bitter) disappointments that has his party headed toward likely defeat in November’s midterm elections. Biden’s own political future is increasingly uncertain.

More Show less
Two children and a robot. We have to control AI before it controls us, warns former Google CEO Eric Schmidt.

Listen: Tech companies set the rules for the digital world through algorithms powered by artificial intelligence. But does Big Tech really understand AI? Former Google CEO Eric Schmidt tells Ian Bremmer that we need to control AI before it controls us.

What's troubling about AI, he says, is that it’s still very new, and AI is learning by doing. Schmidt, co-author of “The Age of AI: And Our Human Future,” worries that AI exacerbates problems like anxiety, driving a human addiction cycle that leads to depression.

Subscribe to the GZERO World Podcast on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Stitcher, or your preferred podcast platform to receive new episodes as soon as they're published.

COVID has accelerated our embrace of the digital world. The thing is, we don't always know who’s running it.

Instead of governments, Ian Bremmer says, so far a handful of Big Tech companies are writing the rules of digital space — through computer algorithms powered by artificial intelligence.

The problem is that tech companies have set something in motion they don't fully understand, nor control.

More Show less

If omicron makes cases explode in China, the country's leaders will have to choose between weathering short-term or long-term pain.

Yanzhong Huang, senior fellow for global health at the Council on Foreign Relations, predicts that sticking to the zero-COVID approach at all costs will hurt the Chinese and global economy. In his view, learning to live with the virus is the way to go.

More Show less
The Graphic Truth: How do US presidents do in their first year?

Joe Biden's approval rating has taken a big hit during his first year as US president. Biden is now just slightly more popular than his predecessor Donald Trump at the same point in his presidency. While Biden has made a series of policy and political blunders that might be reflected in polling, this is also a sign of the times: US politics are now so polarized that presidential approval has a low ceiling. We compare the approval ratings of the last five US presidents in their first year.

Russian President Vladimir Putin attends a meeting with his Iranian counterpart Ebrahim Raisi in Moscow, Russia January 19, 2022.

Iran and Russia heart each other. The presidents of Iran and Russia have little in common personally, but they share many geopolitical interests, including in Afghanistan and Syria. They also have a common resolve in countering "the West.” These issues are all on the agenda as Vladimir Putin and Ebrahim Raisi held their first in-person meeting in Moscow. Raisi is a hardline cleric who leads a theocracy with nuclear ambitions. Vladimir Putin, meanwhile, is a wily autocrat who enjoys provoking America and Europe, and has ambitions to return to the glory days of the territorially expansive Soviet Union — as seen with the Kremlin's recent provocations on the Ukrainian border. With the Iran nuclear talks on life support and Joe Biden already bracing for Russian troops crossing into Ukraine, Tehran and Moscow now have even more reasons to scheme and cooperate. Indeed, Moscow and Tehran have increasingly been cooperating on energy and security issues (Iran might be buying Russian military technology) as their respective relations with the West deteriorate.

More Show less
Namibian citizen Phillip Luhl holds one of his twin daughters as he speaks to his Mexican husband Guillermo Delgado via Zoom meeting in Johannesburg, South Africa, April 13, 2021

2: Namibia’s High Court ruled against two gay couples seeking legal recognition of their marriages. The judge said she agreed with the couples, who are seeking residency or work authorizations for foreign-born spouses, but is bound by a Supreme Court ruling that deems same-sex relationships illegitimate.

More Show less

Subscribe to GZERO Media's newsletter, Signal

GZEROMEDIA

Subscribe to GZERO Media's newsletter: Signal

A year of Biden

Signal

Can we control AI before it controls us?

GZERO World Clips

Should China learn to live with COVID?

GZERO World Clips

China vs COVID in 2022

GZERO World Clips

GZEROMEDIA

Subscribe to GZERO Media's newsletter: Signal