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French President Emmanuel Macron

Paige Fusco

Hard Numbers: Macron’s pension fireworks, US and Europe’s inflation woes, Russia’s LGBTQ crackdown, Big Tech’s bad week

65: French President Emmanuel Macron plans to implement pension reform and deliver on his vow of raising the retirement age by three years to 65 by 2031. Expect uproar! If there’s one thing the French hate more than politicians, it’s government interference with the national pension scheme.

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Podcast: Can the US get its act together? Susan Glasser & Peter Baker on "the world’s greatest geopolitical crisis"

Listen: Whatever the US midterm elections are all about this time around, one thing is clear: the result will have global ripple effects on US relations with Russia, China, and American democracy itself. Ian Bremmer speaks to two of Washington’s top reporters: DC power couple and co-authors Susan Glasser, Washington columnist for The New Yorker, and Peter Baker, chief White House correspondent for The New York Times, in a GZERO World podcast recorded in front of a live audience in New York City. They discuss their bestselling new book on former president Trump “The Divider: Trump in the White House, 2017-2021," the upcoming US midterms, and the state of American democracy in 2022.

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.

A woman speaks on the phone outside a money exchange office in Ciudad Juarez, Mexico.

Reuters

Hard Numbers: Mexicans benefit from US labor boom, UAE-Euro remittances surge, Egypt feels the Ukraine burn, Bangladesh’s cap

16.6: Remittances to Mexico in the year leading up to July rose a whopping 16.6% to $32.8 billion, in large part due to the US’ post-pandemic booming labor market. Unemployment levels remain very low in the US – a good thing for Mexican remittances – though that could change as the US Federal Reserve doubles down on its effort to quell inflation.

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A Latvian flag flutters in the wind next to a Russian flag near a hotel in Daugavpils.

REUTERS/Ints Kalnins

Hard Numbers: Latvians vote against Russia, Paraguay squeezes Taiwan, Rwandan genocide trial begins, US offers Pacific cash

5.1: When Latvians go to the polls in a general election Sunday, only 5.1% of them say they'll cast a ballot for Harmony, the opposition party favored by ethnic Russians and Belarusians. Harmony came in first in the last election in 2018, but other parties agreed to keep it out of the government — and it’ll be out of parliament if it doesn’t get at least 5% of the vote.

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A Southern Electric gas bill and a gas stove burner as the UK government unveiled a package of reforms in the energy market.

Reuters

Hard Numbers: UK to foot energy bills, US gas prices stop falling, fiery protest in Japan, Oz gas project halted

6: Ahead of winter, the British government says it will pick up half the tab for businesses’ energy bills for six months starting Oct. 1. Increased government spending and debt, however, makes it trickier for the Bank of England to navigate its way out of soaring inflation.

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Representation of Ethereum, with its native cryptocurrency ether.

Reuters

Hard Numbers: Crypto upgrade, Angolan inauguration, Iran’s SCO bid, soaring US mortgage rates, enthusiasm for omicron boosters

99: Ethereum, the world's no. 2 cryptocurrency after Bitcoin, successfully completed a long-awaited software upgrade that will reduce carbon emissions linked to its mining by 99%. Crypto fans hope “the merge” will help get environmentalists off their backs and end the crypto price slump they’ve suffered since May.

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Gabriella Turrisi

The Graphic Truth: As US arms Taiwan, China arms itself

The White House announced on Friday that it plans to sell Taiwan $1.1 billion worth of new weapons, its biggest arms sale to the self-governing island since President Joe Biden took office. It's also the first since China upended the status quo in the Taiwan Strait in response to US House Speaker Nancy Pelosi's uber-controversial trip to Taipei.

For decades, the US has sold weapons to Taiwan over China's strong objections. While Beijing claims the island is part of the People's Republic of China, Washington does not take a position on the question of Taiwan's sovereignty, holding that the issue should be resolved peacefully by both sides — while supporting Taiwan's self-defense capabilities. But tensions between Washington and Beijing over Taiwan have been rising as the US-China relationship deteriorates more broadly.

If China were to someday invade Taiwan — which it regards as a renegade province that sooner or later will be brought under mainland control — would the US come to the island's defense? A 1979 law provides "strategic ambiguity" on whether America would have to do so. In the meantime, US arms sales have bolstered Taiwan's defense deterrent while China's military budget has skyrocketed.

We take a look at US military sales to Taiwan compared with China's own defense spending since 1990.

An Ethiopian woman who fled war in Tigray region carries a child on her back as she walks at the Um-Rakoba camp on the Sudan-Ethiopia border.

REUTERS/Mohamed Nureldin Abdallah

Hard Numbers: Violence in Tigray, Russia hits Ukraine station, cops raid Bolsonaro loyalists, abortion motivates US voters, Albo chugs a beer

12: Intense fighting has resumed between Ethiopian forces and combatants in the northern Tigray region for the first time in 12 months. Addis Ababa says it has launched a “large-scale offensive” in response to regrouping efforts by the Tigray People's Liberation Front – a further blow for ongoing mediation efforts led by the African Union.

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