London Prepares for the Olympics
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In less than a month, the Olympic Games will begin in London, a great city prepared for the benefits of the "Olympic Spirit" and the risks of massive security and worldwide attention. We hear how Londoners are preparing -- for better or worse. Also, the heat wave continues to break record highs, and the biggest financial scandal you’ve never heard of before.
Banner image: the latest set of Giant Olympic Rings has been unveiled on Tower Bridge to mark exactly one month to go until the Olympic Games.
Heat Wave Continues to Break Record Highs ()
Last month, more than 3200 temperature records were broken in the United States. Last week alone, more than 2000 went down. Thunderstorms could ruin a lot of picnics and fireworks displays on Independence Day, and the center of the country may be looking at unusual heat, possibly into August. That's according to Alex Sosnowski, Expert Senior Meteorologist at AccuWeather.
Does London Really Need the Olympics? ()
Five massive rings now hang from the Tower Bridge, and the Olympics logo will be brightly lit every night after the games begin later this month. But after the Queen's recent Jubilee, are Londoners excited or thoroughly underwhelmed? Traffic congestion has many working at home. There's commercial saturation, and public space has been sold to private investors. There will be warships in the River Thames, missile-launchers on apartment rooftops and 35,000 police and military personnel. London last hosted the Olympics in 1948 amid austerity in the aftermath of World War II. Amateur athletes slept on cots and brought their own towels. Will the "Spirit of the Olympics" finally overwhelm doubts about a $15 billion spectacle in the midst of economic recession?
- Vanessa Kortekaas: Financial Times, @@ftolympics
- Anna Minton: author and journalist, @annaminton
- Will Jennings: University of Southampton, @drjennings
- Tom Sykes: Daily Beast
Can the Banking System Be Reformed? ()
After ten years of preparation, a federal trial has exposed the collusion of Wall Street's major banks and finance companies to rig the bidding on municipal bonds, a business worth $3.7 trillion. In the exact words of one settlement of the case, "They stole from virtually every state district and territory in the United States . That includes schools, hospitals, libraries and nursing homes." Matt Taibbi, Contributing Editor for Rolling Stone magazine and author of Griftopia: A Story of Bankers, Politicians, and the Most Audacious Power Grab in American History, has more on the biggest financial scandal you've never heard of before.
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