Morning links: How Canada did it

So, just what did Canada do? – Europe’s welfare system is as unsustainable as Canada’s was, only they managed to avoid doing anything about it for a long time.
Gulf Coast disaster: Will BP be bought or bankrupt?
CNN Money – Can BP afford to exist as a standalone company? Could it go bankrupt? Will BP have to cut dividends? Or will it survive intact, bruised a bit but otherwise just fine?
Euro ‘will be dead in five years’ – Of the 25 leading City economists who took part in the Telegraph survey, 12 predicted that the euro would not survive in its current form this Parliamentary term, compared with eight who suspected it would.
Fiscal discipline alone will not overcome the eurozone’s troubles – Whyte says, “deficits and surpluses are umbilically linked: one entails the other”. Alas, there appear to be very few policymakers in Germany willing to consider an alternative.
Jobs and kids: Female employment and fertility in rural China
Voxeu – Non-agricultural jobs for women reduce the number of children per woman by 0.64 and the probability of having more than one child by 54.8%.

Dear Hotmail: What the hell happened to you? – Somewhere along the line you stumbled. You got sloppy or you just gave up, and we drifted apart. Now you’ve been lapped by the technology and features of Gmail.
Behind Foursquare and Gowalla: The great check-in battle – All over the web, reward-based achievement games have begun to blossom as a means of encouraging specific behaviour.
Why I sold Zappos – Tony Hsieh built his online shoe retailer into an e-commerce powerhouse. But with credit tightening and investors eyeing the exits, Hsieh was forced to ask: Was selling Zappos really the only way to save it?

The clash of sports civilizations – As in industry, the government picks national “winners” in sports and funnels cash to create champions and win medals. But the support typically goes to sports in which Chinese have traditionally excelled. Soccer teams here are left to look for private sponsorship.
An inside look at Bernie Madoff’s life in prison – From the day Madoffarrived at the softer of Butner’s two medium-security facilities in handcuffs and shackles, he was a celebrity, even if his admirers were now murderers and sex offenders.
There is no one either good or bad, but circumstances make them so – Moral character is fragile much more often than it is robust. Most people have no robust character at all.
Brain scans being misused as lie detectors, experts say – Experts warn that measures are needed to stop brain scans being misused by courts, insurers and employers.

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