We test the temperature of the nation this week

Suicide bombers in Kirkuk and Baghdad kill 47 and wound more than 200
Overstretched Darfur peacekeeping force close to failure
EDF raises gas prices by 22 per cent, electricity by 17 per cent. Other providers to follow suit

Tensions between Hamas and Fatah rise, with violence and arrests on both sides
The NHS is not treating people with learning disabilities fairly, report warns
French MPs vote to scrap compulsory 35-hour week

cloud and sun
Microsoft provides funding for development of open-source software
Court of Appeal outlaws restraint tactics used on young people in custody
David Cameron is reunited with his stolen bicycle by the Sunday Mirror

4.5 million parents gain right to take time off work in family emergencies
Australia abolishes its policy of jailing all asylum-seekers
UK government to make it illegal to pay restaurant workers less than minimum wage

sad face

Sun shines on the British workforce, but not on the French
Despite Beijing’s draconian anti-smog measures, the pre-Olympic outlook is murky

This article first appeared in the 04 August 2008 issue of the New Statesman, China: The patriot games