Macron: Can Jupiter Rise Again?

The past few months have been brutal for French President Emmanuel Macron. Staff scandals, high-profile cabinet departures, and a recent selfie-fail in the Caribbean have all conspired to push his approval rating down from a post-election high of 65 percent to just 29 percent today. Opposition parties already smell blood. In a bid to set things right, Mr. Macron is expected to reshuffle his cabinet today. Macron hopes that by bringing in some fresh faces he can stop the slide and boost his chances of pulling off a new round of tricky economic reforms.


And tricky they are: Macron wants to cut the budget by shrinking France’s generous pension system and streamlining a government whose expenditure amounts to 56 percent of GDP, the highest of any country in Europe. He also wants to introduce more private competition for the debt-saddled state railway operator, despite staunch opposition from unions. Longer-term, Macron still wants to pull off a grand bargain with Germany to further integrate the member states of the European Union.

But to do any of that, he’ll need to shore up his popularity and hit reset on a presidency that’s on the skids. In part that’s because he used his early months in office to push through several bitter-pill reforms, in particular to France’s notoriously complex labor laws. But it’s also because by conducting the “Jupiterian” (meaning god-like) presidency that he once promised, Macron has alienated many of the insiders and functionaries whom he needs in order to govern. As his former interior minister, who jumped ship last week, put it, “If everyone bows down to him, he will eventually isolate himself.”

As Macron looks to change the narrative around his presidency, he’ll need to change up his cabinet but also his governing style. Whether he is able to do so credibly will have distinct consequences not only for the EU’s third largest economy, but also for the Union more broadly.

Microsoft has a long-standing commitment to child online protection. First and foremost, as a technology company, it has a responsibility to create software, devices and services that have safety features built in from the outset. Last week, in furtherance of those commitments, Microsoft shared a grooming detection technique, code name "Project Artemis," by which online predators attempting to lure children for sexual purposes can be detected, addressed and reported. Developed in collaboration with The Meet Group, Roblox, Kik and Thorn, this technique builds off Microsoft patented technology and will be made freely available to qualified online service companies that offer a chat function.

Read more at Microsoft On The Issues.

Vladimir Putin has ruled Russia for twenty years, but he has a problem: his current presidential term ends in 2024, and the constitution prevents him from running for re-election then.

As a result, the question of what he'll do in 2024 has been on the minds of Russia's oligarchs, spooks, bureaucrats, and a lot of ordinary folks, as well. After all, over the past two decades, Putin has made himself, for better and for worse, the indispensable arbiter, boss, and glue of Russia's sprawling and corrupted system of government. As the current speaker of Russia's legislature once said, "Without Putin, there is no Russia." Not as we currently know it, no.

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Since Martin Luther King Jr delivered his iconic "I have a dream" speech in August 1963, the number of Black Americans elected to the United States Congress has dramatically increased. Still, it wasn't until last year, more than half a century later, that the share of Black members serving in the House of Representatives reflected the percentage of Black Americans in the broader population —12 percent. To date, only six states have sent a Black representative to serve in the US Senate, and many states have never elected a Black representative to either house of Congress. Here's a look at Black representation in every US Congress since 1963.

It's been nine years since Libya's long-time despot Muammar Qaddafi was killed in a violent uprising, bringing the oil-rich country to the brink of civil war. That conflict entered a new stage last year when violence between warring factions competing for territory intensified around Tripoli, Libya's capital, leading to the displacement of some 300,000 civilians. In recent weeks, fighting has intensified again, and ceasefire talks have failed. Here's a look at who's who and how we got here.

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Nicholas Thompson, editor-in-chief of WIRED, discusses combating cyberbullying, CCPA and tech "fashion":

What is a "troll score" and is it a realistic way to combat online bullying?

Something that Kayvon Beykpour, head of product at Twitter and I talked about, and the thought was: Twitter doesn't give you a lot of disincentives to be a jerk online. But what if there were a way to measure how much of a jerk someone is and put it right in their profile? Wouldn't that help? I think it's a pretty good idea. Though, you can see the arguments against it.

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