The Week Unwrapped: far-right spying, sport sanctions and petrol poison
Why is Germany spying on an elected political party? Is football waking up to sportwashing? And has lead made us all less intelligent?
Olly Mann and The Week delve behind the headlines and debate what really matters.
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In this week’s episode, we discuss:
A German court has ruled that the far-right Alternative for Germany (AfD) can be classified as a suspected threat to democracy, paving the way for the country’s domestic intelligence agency to spy on the opposition party. So is this a slippery slope to further sleuthing on fringe political movements? Or an illiberal measure to preserve liberal values?
The government has moved to slap sanctions on Chelsea FC owner Roman Abramovitch following Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. The measures come after a string of players and clubs moved to drop Russian sponsors in light of Vladimir Putin’s order for an invasion. So is football finally waking up to the impact of sportwashing?
A US study has found that exposure to leaded gasoline lowered the IQ of about half the population of the US. For people born in the 1960s and the 1970s, when leaded gas use was on the rise, the IQ loss was estimated to be up to six points and for some, more than seven points. Given that the last reserves of leaded fuel were only exhausted last year, could this be the first insight into a global trend?