Malaysian Insider: Goodbye, Dubai? — Tobin Harshaw

Malaysian Insider: Goodbye, Dubai? — Tobin Harshaw
NOV 29 — What’s tiny, dry and poised to bring down the entire global economic system? If you answered “Dubai,” you’ve been reading the papers over this extended holiday weekend. Landon Thomas Jr of The Times sets the stage:

Of the many economies that gorged on debt in the boom years, Dubai stood out. In the space of a few years the emirate’s investment arm, Dubai World, racked up US$59 billion (RM200 billion) in debt, borrowing to build lavish developments like a giant island shaped like a palm tree to entice celebrities like Brad Pitt, and to invest in glittery properties like the MGM Grand Casino in Las Vegas.

Now that the boom has gone bust, both in Dubai and in the United States, Dubai is stuck with a glut of real estate that no one wants to buy or rent. Creditors and markets had always assumed that when push came to shove, its oil-rich neighbour Abu Dhabi would bail out Dubai. But that assumption was called into question this week, and the resulting fear that Dubai might not be able to pay its bills sent a wave of uncertainty rippling through markets just as investors thought the worst of the global financial instability was over.

Read all in Malaysian Insider

Malaysiakini news: Switzerland votes on minaret ban

Switzerland votes on minaret ban

Switzerland votes on a controversial call by the far-right for a ban on the construction of minarets, even as the government opposes the move, warning that it could taint the country’s image.   Continue reading

Top 10 US movie flops of the decade

LOS ANGELES, Nov 29 — Movie flops aren’t just about losing money. Yes, big budgets that go bust are one consideration. But flops are also about lofty expectations dashed and high profiles brought low.

They trigger embarrassing catcalls from the peanut gallery and a general whoever-thought-that-was-a-good-idea-in-the-first-place bewilderment.


Top 10 US TV series of the decade

LOS ANGELES, Nov 29 —Every decade has its landmark TV shows, and there will or should never be complete agreement on which 10 series belong at the top of the list.

For purposes of this list, a TV show is eligible only if it premiered in or after 1999.In addition, TV shows were judged on their artistic merit and overall contribution to the medium, not on their ratings or profit margins.


Freeze on intake of Bangladeshi workers stays

PORT OF SPAIN, Nov 29 —Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak said the freeze on the intake of Bangladeshi workers stays despite a request from his Bangladeshi counterpart for a review of the decision.

He said the request was conveyed in his talks with Sheikh Hasina Wajed on the sidelines of the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting (CHOGM) 2009 here yesterday.