Politics. It is not as boring as you think and if you’re tempted to look away, don’t, because this concerns you.
Let’s begin with five facts you need to know about what’s going on in the world, starting with:
- Australia has a new Prime Minister. What now?
It seems appropriate to kick off number one with what’s been happening here at home. Unless you’ve been living under a rock, you’ve probably noticed there has recently been a whole lot going down in Aussie politics. But here are the important things you should know:
When a vote was called to challenge the now former national leader Tony Abbott, the challenger Malcolm Turnbull won 54-44 votes. #SorryAbbott.
Enter our 29th Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull.
But what does that mean for you? Well, if you’re a woman, good things. Since being sworn in as PM on September 15, Turnbull has announced that a $100 million contribution to help combat domestic violence will be implemented. He also put into motion a visa denial for popular RnB artist, Chris Brown, due to his previous domestic violence conviction and who was expected to tour Australia in December.
Our new PM hasn’t stopped there. Turnbull also made history by introducing Australia’s first female defence minister and the first Indigenous MP for the Executive Council.
“It was inevitable that Turnbull would one day become PM, he certainly wasn’t in politics to be anything less than that,” Daily Telegraph Editor and Network Ten’s Studio 10 morning host Joe Hildebrand told The Newsroom.
Only time will tell how Turnbull’s leadership will be welcomed by the Australian people.
2. Europe’s refugee crisis is still a crisis.
A few weeks ago, you might remember harrowing images emerged of a young boy, whose body washed up ashore after a boat carrying Syrian refugees capsized off the coast of Greece. The photographs that were broadcast worldwide was a tragic reminder of the ongoing refugee crisis that has seen millions of displaced people causing a massive human migration that “hasn’t been seen since World War II,” Mr Hildebrand said. “This is the most important issue right now we should all be concerned about.”
According to the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), there are more than 12.2m people in need of humanitarian assistance. The dangerous living circumstances, that are the result of years of conflict, have seen these millions of refugees turn to their European neighbours causing a massive influx of people.
Germany, where 800,000 refugees are estimated to arrive by the end of 2015, are expected to soon struggle to accommodate the overflow of arrivals along with other countries who have also loosened their border security such as Turkey, Hungary and Austria.
Another factor to be considered is the human smugglers, who are taking advantage of the “off the grid” new routes in order to lead more refugees out of conflict areas and into less populated and safer countries. The smugglers can earn thousands of dollars for just one trip alone, however due to demand high, the original estimated number of refugees entering Europe can be much higher than anticipated.
The Australian Government has shown their support to combat the issue by promising to accept 12,000 refugees who have been affected by the conflict in Syria.
3. Historic rivals unite
Some of the most powerful leaders in the world met at the United Nations General Assembly this past month to discuss the future of Syria.
Amongst the leaders were the head of superpower nations, Russian President Vladimir Putin and United States President Barack Obama. It must be acknowledged that this was not your usual United Nations meeting. It’s the first appearance President Putin has made at the UN in 10 years. Not to mention that Russia and the United States have not been on very smooth terms since the Cold War ended about 30 years ago.
And here they are meeting, in the same place and SHAKING HANDS. It’s a big deal.
A very …
But beyond the tension-filled handshake, the traditional foes put their differences aside by discussing and establishing that their shared goal is to defeat ISIS. As well as working a strategy for both Russia and the United States military to not interfere with each others operations in Syria.
A UN official has stated that the Presidents have “understood the importance of there being a political resolution in Syria,” and that the process undertaken “pursues a political resolution.”
It is expected that there will soon be a swift, yet slow settlement.
4. The 2016 US election and #Kanye2020
With the United States next presidential election fast approaching, the candidates have picked up their campaigning in order to win votes, in hopes of securing the position as one of the most powerful people in the world.
Republican candidate Jeb Bush has built his reputation from his time as Florida governor. However, he has the difficult task of re-defining the Bush name when his brother, 43rd US President George W. Bush, left office with the lowest approval rating in American history.
Another prominent candidate is Democrat Hillary Clinton, wife of former President Bill Clinton. Since announcing she will be running for the Presidency a second time, she has boldly stated that she wants to be a champion for the American people. She has shown herself to be one of the most enduring figures in American politics with a whole lot of experience under her belt having already served as Secretary of State, Governor of New York and First Lady of the United States. Not to mention she is a practicing lawyer. Touché.
But one of the more controversial Republican candidates, Donald Trump, a successful businessman and television personality, has been scrutinised on his opinions of political issues, such as immigration, where he stated that he “would build a wall like nobody can build a wall … nobody comes in illegally anymore,”. On the subjects of vaccinations when he Tweeted:
He continues to not only vow to “make America great again“, but also remind everyone that he himself is not perfect.
But forget 2016 for a minute and fast forward to the next election. Kanye West, one of the biggest names in music, made a surprising and shocking announcement at the 2015 Video Music Awards (VMA’s):
Many were left confused and unsure whether or not the rapper was making a serious statement. But it has been confirmed by him and his wife, Kim Kardashian-West, that he is serious about running for the Presidency.
“I hope more than anything Trump and Kanye become president, unfortunately, it would probably mean the extinction of the world as we know it, a small price to pay for the gags,” says Joe Hildebrand.
5. The Trans-Pacific Partnership
A historic trade agreement eight years in the making involving the United States and 11 Pacific Rim countries such as Japan, Chile and Vietnam has been finalised.
The agreement known as the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TTP) combines 40 per cent of the world’s economy and is a multinational understanding that is to extend restrictive intellectual property (IP) laws across the globe and rewrite international rules, essentially making trade easier between nations.
“I’m worried … we’ve lost American jobs to the manipulations that countries, particularly in Asia, have engaged in,” said Clinton.
US leader Obama begs to differ as this will be the biggest free trade deal under his presidency, and has stated that it will now work with Congress to secure its passage into law in order to eliminate taxes on thousands of products. – Xantre Macaraeg
Top photo of Donald Trump from Gage Skidmore’s Flickr photostream.