Politics of the United Kingdom.
The United Kingdom is a constitutional monarchy, in which the monarch is the head of state and the Prime Minister of the United Kingdom is the head of government. Legislative power is vested in the two chambers of the Parliament of the United Kingdom, the House of Commons and the House of Lords, as well as in the Scottish parliament and Welsh and Northern Ireland assemblies. The UK political system is a multi-party system. UK have two largest political parties have been the Conservative Party and the Labour Party. Before the Labour Party rose in British politics, the Liberal Party was the other major political party along with the Conservatives.
Politics of the United States.
The United States is a federal constitutional republic, in which the President of the United States (the head of state and head of government), Congress, and judiciary share powers reserved to the national government, and the federal government shares sovereignty with the state governments. The executive branch is headed by the President and is independent of the legislature. Legislative power is vested in the two chambers of Congress, the Senate and the House of Representatives. The judicial branch (or judiciary), composed of the Supreme Court and lower federal courts, exercises judicial power (or judiciary). The judiciary's function is to interpret the United States Constitution and federal laws and regulations. This includes resolving disputes between the executive and legislative branches. The federal government's layout is explained in the Constitution. Two political parties, the Democratic Party and the Republican Party, have dominated American politics since the American Civil War, although there are also smaller parties like the Libertarian Party, the Green Party, and the Constitution Party.
Government of Ukraine.
The government of Ukraine is often associated with the Cabinet of Ministers of Ukraine. However it should be considered that Ukraine is a country under a semi-presidential system with separate legislative, executive, and judicial branches of government. And like a lot of European countries with the semi-presidential system a head of state, the President of Ukraine, has a great influence on the executive branch of the government. The highest government body of the executive branch is the Cabinet of Ministers of Ukraine not the president. The legislative branch is represented by a unicameral parliament, Verkhovna Rada, consisting of 450 People's Deputies (members of parliament). The judicial branch is very complex and has two independent court systems such as constitutional, the Constitutional Court of Ukraine, and general, the Supreme Court of Ukraine.
Foreign policy of the United States.
The foreign policy of the United States is the way in which it interacts with foreign nations and sets standards of interaction for its organizations, corporations and individual citizens. The officially stated goals of the foreign policy of the United States, as mentioned in the Foreign Policy Agenda of the U.S. Department of State, are "to build and sustain a more democratic, secure, and prosperous world for the benefit of the American people and the international community." In addition, the United States House Committee on Foreign Affairs states as some of its jurisdictional goals: "export controls, including nonproliferation of nuclear technology and nuclear hardware; measures to foster commercial intercourse with foreign nations and to safeguard American business abroad; international commodity agreements; international education; and protection of American citizens abroad and expatriation." U.S. foreign policy and foreign aid have been the subject of much debate, praise and criticism both domestically and abroad.
Foreign policy of the United Kingdom.
The diplomatic foreign relations of the United Kingdom are implemented by the Foreign and Commonwealth Office. The Prime Minister and numerous other agencies play a role in setting policy, and many institutions and businesses have a voice and a role. Great Britain was the world's foremost power during the 18th, 19th and early 20th centuries. It wielded significant and often preeminent influence upon world affairs through its financial and industrial power, its Royal Navy and the vast extent of its British Empire. Until the Suez Crisis of 1956 it was considered a superpower. However, the flagging economy, cost of two World Wars and the granting of independence to most colonies after 1946 steadily diminished its power. Nevertheless, the United Kingdom remains a major power and a permanent member of the United Nations Security Council, a Member state of the European Union, and a founding member of the G7, G8, G20, NATO, OECD, WTO, Council of Europe, OSCE, and the Commonwealth of Nations, which is a legacy of the British Empire.
World poverty is a problem that can be altered by simple acts by simple people. This world problem is defined as a lack of sufficient income and resources, inevitably causing a lack of basic needs such as food and shelter. The causes of poverty vary from society to society and even individual to individual, but the effects are wide-spread and troubling. There are many things anyone can do to help this situation. Research into the causes and needs of these people is imperative to helping successfully. The first step is to ask "What is poverty?"
This is caused by a number of factors. Overpopulation can play a major part because if there are too many people and not enough food and resources to go around, the number of poor will naturally rise. In countries like America, where there is a large population and in some opinions, overpopulation, the deficiency level is low because there is such an abundance of food. New technologies and techniques in farming and animal husbandry have resulted in mass production to keep up, even exceed the needs of our growing population. Another cause is the distribution of these foods and other resources. Resources are not evenly distributed throughout the globe. Many developing countries just can't afford to import necessary resources for their populations. World poverty is also caused by high costs and standards of living. A lifestyle that might be considered adequate in a developing nation is considered poor in another.
In any poor community, one can usually find a lack of educational and employment opportunities. Because the government is unable to afford the costs of school and teachers, many children in poor societies grow up illiterate. Thus, they are only able to obtain jobs that pay minimal wages just to keep food on the table. If a community has a shortage of literate workers, a company requiring literate employees would find little reason to stay in that community. Overpopulation can not only result in poor conditions, but it can also result in poor environments. Poor or degraded natural environments are also considered to be causes of poverty. Polluted waterways, dead soil and chemical pollution cut resources down considerably. Changing trends in the economy and job markets can also result in poor societies. If industries change due to new technologies and inventions, workers are expected to adjust to these changes. In some societies, the changes come as a shock to the system and people lose their jobs rather than adjust to changing trends. Welfare dependency has been a major issue, especially in America. Many argue that destitution is high because welfare systems actually encourage people to avoid better paying jobs and even marriage. Click the Bible Resources link for more information on issues like poverty.
This epidemic affects everyone in any society. It's easy to ignore the problem, but the effects can be seen if looked at closely. People see the commercials for organizations trying to help poor children in other countries. Many of these children are undernourished because their community is poor and lacks enough food to go around. Poor conditions also causes disease and exposure which therefore causes world poverty. People in poor communities don't have the medical care necessary to prevent and treat diseases. They also lack the resources needed to build adequate shelter from the elements. In poor countries, there is often a lack of high morale. People find themselves trapped in situations they can't seem to break out of. This can result in depression. To fight depression, some poor people try to avoid reality by taking drugs or drinking alcohol. Thus, world poverty also causes drug dependence. In order to get what they need or to make money, poor people will steal or sell illegal drugs to get by. All of these effects can be life-long. Crime leads to incarceration. Malnutrition leads to health problems. Disease can lead to permanent, debilitating conditions. Each of these can be considered a definition of poverty as well as the ever growing causes of poverty.
Every effort counts and God sees what everyone succeeds in and fails in. Remember the words of Jesus: "Verily I say unto you, Inasmuch as ye did it not to one of the least of these, ye did it not to me." (Matthew 25:45) The causes of poverty are real and part of everyday life. In order to change this many actions need to be taken. A good place to start when wanting to find out how to help is contacting local shelters and other similar organizations that help these people.
Political parties in the United States.
The modern political party system in the U.S. is a two-party system dominated by the Democratic Party and the Republican Party. These two parties have won every United States presidential election.
The Democratic Party is one of two major political parties in the U.S. It is arguably oldest political party in the world. In 2004, it was the largest political party, with 72 million voters (42.6% of 169 million registered) claiming affiliation. The president of the United States, Barack Obama, is the 15th Democrat to hold the office, and since the 2006 midterm elections, the Democratic Party is the majority party for the United States Senate. A 2011 USA Today review of state voter rolls indicates that registered Democrats declined in 25 of 28 states (some states do not register voters by party). Democrats were still the largest political party with more than 42 million voters (compared with 30 million Republicans and 24 million independents). But in 2011 Democrats numbers shrank 800,000, and from 2008 they were down by 1.7 million, or 3.9%.
The Republican Party is one of the two major contemporary political parties in the United States of America. Since the 1880s it has been nicknamed (by the media) the "Grand Old Party". Founded in 1854 by Northern anti-slavery activists and modernizers, the Republican Party rose to prominence in 1860 with the election of Abraham Lincoln, who used the party machinery to support victory in the American Civil War. The GOP dominated national politics during the Third Party System, from 1854 to 1896, and the Fourth Party System from 1896 to 1932. Today, the Republican Party supports an American conservative platform, with further foundations in economic liberalism, fiscal conservatism, and social conservatism. Former President George W. Bush is the 19th Republican to hold that office. The party's nominee for President of the United States in the 2012 presidential election was Mitt Romney, former Governor of Massachusetts.
Green Party, Constitution Party, Libertarian Party.
Political parties in the United Kingdom.
The modern political party system in the U.K. is a multi-party system dominated by the Conservative Party and the Labour Party.
The Conservative and Unionist Party (usually shortened to Conservative Party, or informally as the Tory Party) is the main centre-right political party in the United Kingdom. Their policies usually promote conservatism and British Unionism. They are the largest party in the British House of Commons with 307 out of 650 seats and the party leader David Cameronis the Prime Minister.
The Labour Party
The Labour Party is the main centre-left political party in the United Kingdom. They are a social democratic party and have been one of the UK's two main political parties from the early 20th century, to the present day. They are currently the second largest party in the British House of Commons, with 258 out of 650 seats and they form the Official Opposition. Their current leader is Ed Miliband. The Labour Party was in power in the United Kingdom government from 1997 to 2010, but now sits in opposition. It was in power in the Scottish Parliament (in coalition with the Scottish Liberal Democrats) until 2007, and is the second largest grouping on the London Assembly, although the Mayor of London until May 2008 was a Labour party member. It is also the 2nd largest party in Local government and the 2nd largest UK party in the European Parliament.
All of the English parties except for the Green Party contest elections in England, Scotland and Wales. Parties represented in the House of Commons of the United Kingdom or the European Parliament are:
Conservative Party - A centre-right party which promotes British conservatism and unionism.
Labour Party - A centre-left party which promotes social democracy and democratic socialism.
Liberal Democrats - A centre-left party which promotes liberalism, progressivism and federalism.
UK Independence Party - A right-wing party which promotes taking the UK out of the European Union as well as having conservative and populist policies.
Green Party of England and Wales - A left-wing party which promotes environmentalism and socialism.
British National Party - A far-right party which promotes policies of anti-immigration, right-wing populism and Third position economics.
The United Nations (UN) is an intergovernmental organization established on 24 October 1945 to promote international co-operation. A replacement for the ineffective League of Nations, the organization was created following the Second World War to prevent another such conflict. At its founding, the UN had 51 member states; there are now 193. The UN Headquarters is situated in Manhattan, New York City and enjoys extraterritoriality. Further main offices are situated in Geneva, Nairobi and Vienna. The organization is financed by assessed and voluntary contributions from its member states. Its objectives include maintaining international peace and security, promoting human rights, fostering social and economic development, protecting the environment, and providing humanitarian aid in cases of famine, natural disaster, and armed conflict.
The United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) is a specialized agency of the United Nations (UN). Its purpose is to contribute to peace and security by promoting international collaboration through education, science, and culture in order to further universal respect for justice, the rule of law, and human rights along with fundamental freedom proclaimed in the UN Charter. It is the heir of the League of Nations' International Commission on Intellectual Cooperation. UNESCO has 195 member states and nine associate members. Most of the field offices are "cluster" offices covering three or more countries; there are also national and regional offices. UNESCO pursue its objectives through five major programs: education, natural sciences, social and human sciences, culture, and communication and information. Projects sponsored by UNESCO include literacy, technical, and teacher-training programmes; international science programmes; the promotion of independent media and freedom of the press; regional and cultural history projects; the promotion of cultural diversity; translations of world literature; international cooperation agreements to secure the world cultural and natural heritage (World Heritage Sites) and to preserve human rights, and attempts to bridge the worldwide digital divide. It is also a member of the United Nations Development Group. UNESCO's aim is "to contribute to the building of peace, the eradication of poverty, sustainable development and intercultural dialogue through education, the sciences, culture, communication and information". Other priorities of the organization include attaining quality Education For All and lifelong learning, addressing emerging social and ethical challenges, fostering cultural diversity, a culture of peace and building inclusive knowledge societies through information and communication.
The Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE) is the world's largest security-oriented intergovernmental organization. Its mandate includes issues such as arms control and the promotion of human rights, freedom of the press and fair elections. It has 550 staff at its headquarters in Vienna, Austria, and 2,300 field staff. It has its origins in the 1975 Conference on Security and Co-operation in Europe (CSCE) held in Helsinki, Finland. The OSCE is concerned with early warning, conflict prevention, crisis management, and post-conflict rehabilitation. Its 57 participating states are located in Europe, Asia and North America and cover most of the land area of the Northern Hemisphere. It was created during the Cold War era as an East–West forum.
The six official languages of the OSCE are English, French, German, Italian, Russian and Spanish.
Relations with the United Nations
The OSCE considers itself a regional organization in the sense of Chapter VIII of the United Nations Charter and is an observer in the United Nations General Assembly. The Chairman-in-Office gives routine briefings to the United Nations Security Council.
Relations with the United Nations
The OSCE considers itself a regional organization in the sense of Chapter VIII of the United Nations Charter and is an observer in the United Nations General Assembly. The Chairman-in-Office gives routine briefings to the United Nations Security Council.
THE COUNCIL OF EUROPE
The Council of Europe is the continent's oldest political organization . The Council of Europe is an international organisation promoting co-operation between all countries of Europe in the areas of legal standards,human rights, democratic development, the rule of law and cultural co-operation.
The best known bodies of the Council of Europe are the European Court of Human Rights, which enforces the European Convention on Human Rights, and the European Pharmacopoeia Commission, which sets the quality standards for pharmaceutical products in Europe. The Council of Europe's work has resulted in standards, charters and conventions to facilitate cooperation between European countries.
The headquarters of the Council of Europe are in Strasbourg, France, with English and French as its two official languages.
The Council of Europe was founded on 5 May 1949 by the Treaty of London. The Treaty of London or the Statute of the Council of Europe was signed in London on that day by ten states: Belgium, Denmark, France, Ireland, Italy, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Norway, Sweden and the United Kingdom. Many other states followed, especially after the democratic transitions in central and eastern Europe during the early 1990s, and the Council of Europe now includes all European states except Belarus, Kazakhstan,Vatican City and the European states with limited recognition.
The Council was set up to:
defend human rights, parliamentary democracy and the rule of law,
develop continent-wide agreements to standardise member countries' social and legal practices,
promote awareness of a European identity based on shared values and cutting across different cultures.
Current key priorities include:
- Fighting corruption
- Helping governments implement judicial reforms
- Protecting freedom of expression and the media
- Protecting minorities
The Council of Europe advocates freedom of expression and of the media, freedom of assembly, equality, and the protection of minorities. It has launched campaigns on issues such as child protection, online hate speech, and the rights of the Roma, Europe’s largest minority.
Cooperation between Ukraine and the Council of Europe
On November 9, 1995 Ukraine joined the Council of Europe and became the 37th member of Organization.
In accordance with the Statute of the Council of Europe Ukraine is represented in all three main bodies of the Council of Europe (CoE).
The main outlines of Ukraine’s present activity in the Council of Europe are the following:
reform of national legislation in compliance with the standards of the Council of Europe; cooperation in the field of freedom of the media; development of tolerant democratic society; protection of rights of national minorities; gender equality; protection of children; fight against terrorism, corruption and organised crime.
The main areas of Ukraine’s cooperation in the framework of the Council of Europe are:
- implementation of the Council of Europe Action Plan for Ukraine aimed at strengthening the democratic stability in Ukraine;
- implementation of the programmes of cooperation between the Council of Europe and the Central and Eastern European countries to guarantee the human rights and the rule of law;
- joint efforts with the Council of Europe and the European Union to solve such important problems as providing freedom of travel on the continent, regulation of the migratory flows, fight against trafficking of human beings.
Action Plan for Ukraine (AP) is a joint strategic initiative of the Council of Europe and the Ukrainian authorities to support Ukraine in fulfilling its statutory and specific obligations as a Council of Europe Member State, to consolidate achievements since accession in 1995, and to help Ukraine meet new challenges.
AP focuses action on areas where Council of Europe expertise is available and where its monitoring and standard-setting bodies present a comparative advantage:
Protection of human rights within the context of the European Convention on Human Rights,
Support to the reform of the judicial system and the reform of the criminal justice system
Strengthening local democracy and support for local government reforms in Ukraine
Implementation of the Revised European Social Charter and reinforcement of social cohesion
Reinforcement of good governance and the fight against corruption
Support to free and fair elections.
Promote awareness of a European identity- підвищувати обізнаність населення про європейську ідентичність.
EuropeanPharmacopoeia- Європейська фармакопея ( правовий акт, що використовується в більшості країн Європи при виробництві фармацевтичних продуктів у країнах Європейського Союзу (ЄС)).
launch a campaign- розгорнути кампанію.
Standard-setting body -нормативний орган.
reinforcement of social cohesion- зміцнення соціальної згуртованості.
The North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO), also called the (North) Atlantic Alliance, is an intergovernmental military alliance based on the North Atlantic Treaty which was signed on 4 April 1949. The organization constitutes a system of collective defence whereby its member states agree to mutual defense in response to an attack by any external party. NATO's headquarters are in Brussels, Belgium, one of the 28 member states across North America and Europe, the newest of which, Albania and Croatia, joined in April 2009. An additional 22 countries participate in NATO's Partnership for Peace program, with 15 other countries involved in institutionalized dialogue programmes. The combined military spending of all NATO members constitutes over 70% of the global total. Members' defense spending is supposed to amount to 2% of GDP.
NATO was little more than a political association until the Korean War galvanized the organization's member states, and an integrated military structure was built up under the direction of two U.S. supreme commanders. The course of the Cold War led to a rivalry with nations of the Warsaw Pact, which formed in 1955. Doubts over the strength of the relationship between the European states and the United States ebbed and flowed, along with doubts over the credibility of the NATO defence against a prospective Soviet invasion—doubts that led to the development of the independent French nuclear deterrent and the withdrawal of the French from NATO's military structure in 1966 for 30 years. After the fall of the Berlin Wall in 1989, the organization was drawn into the breakup of Yugoslavia, and conducted its first military interventions in Bosnia from 1992 to 1995 and later Yugoslavia in 1999. Politically, the organization sought better relations with former Warsaw Pact countries, several of which joined the alliance in 1999 and 2004.
Article 5 of the North Atlantic treaty, requiring member states to come to the aid of any member state subject to an armed attack, was invoked for the first and only time after the 11 September 2001 attacks, after which troops were deployed to Afghanistan under the NATO-led ISAF. The organization has operated a range of additional roles since then, including sending trainers to Iraq, assisting in counter-piracy operations and in 2011 enforcing a no-fly zone over Libya in accordance with U.N. Security Council Resolution 1973. The less potent Article 4, which merely invokes consultation among NATO members, has been invoked four times: by Turkey in 2003 over the Iraq War, twice in 2012 by Turkey over the Syrian Civil War after the downing of an unarmed Turkish F-4 reconnaissance jet and after a mortar was fired at Turkey from Syria and by Poland in 2014 following the Russian intervention in Crimea.
Foreign relations of the European Union
Although there has been a large degree of integration between European Union member states, foreign relations is still a largely inter-governmental matter, with the 28 members controlling their own relations to a large degree. However with the Union holding more weight as a single bloc, there are at times attempts to speak with one voice, notably on trade and energy matters. The High Representative of the Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy personifies this role.
Policy and actors
The EU's foreign relations are dealt with either through the Common Foreign and Security Policy, decided by the European Council or the economic trade negotiations handled by the European Commission. The leading EU diplomat in both areas is the High Representative Catherine Ashton. A limited amount of defence co-operation takes place within the Common Security and Defence Policy.
Member state missions
The EU member states have their own diplomatic missions, in addition to the common EU delegations. On the other hand, additionally to the third-state delegations and offices the European Commission maintains representation in each of the member states. Where the EU delegations have not taken on their full Lisbon Treaty responsibilities, the national embassy of the country holding the rotating EU presidency has the role of representing the CFSP while the EU (formerly the Commission) delegation speaks only for the Commission. Member state missions have certain responsibilities to national of fellow states. Consulates are obliged to support EU citizens of other states abroad if they do not have a consulate of their own state in the country. Also, if another EU state makes a request to help their citizens in an emergency then they are obliged to assist. An example would be evacuations where EU states help assist each other's citizens.
Ukraine and IMO
Ukraine's integrationinto the global economy, market-orientedchanges, liberalization of foreign economic activity are the main factors thatled tothe needof our country's membership in international organizations.
Ukraine is developing cooperation with the International Monetary Fund ( IMF), European Bank for Reconstruction and Development ( EBRD) and the World Bank (WB )and others.
The beginning ofUkraine's integrationinto the globalfinancial systemwasin 1992 byjoining to theInternational MonetaryFund, the WorldBank and the EuropeanBank for Reconstructionand Development.
The International Monetary Fundis amonetary and financialcooperationintergovernmentalorganizationthatto regulate monetarysettlement relations between countries andthe implementation offinancial assistancefor member countriesby providing them short-termloans in foreigncurrency in case offoreign exchangedifficulties arising fromthe violation of payments balance.
During the years ofcooperationwith the IMF,Ukraine(1994-2012years)received about14.9 billiondol.Znachnaof these fundshave send forfinancing the deficitsand tradebalances. Another direction of IMF credit using is formationof foreign exchange reserves. Formationof these reserveshas allowedto support thestability of the nationalcurrency. Stabilization loansgranted forUkraineunderthe actualcommitmentsgovernmentnot to raisesocial standards,to clean up theenergy sector and reforms inthe financial sector. From the beginningof the newgovernment (2010) were initiatedreforms in variousareasthat meet the requirementsof the IMF, for examples, the retirement agehad been raisedin our country. In recent years,Ukraine has takenappropriate stepsto improve the situationin the tax field, the field of customsand realized a judiciaryreform.
IBRD is themainlending institutionof the World Bank, the largest creditorof development projectsindeveloping countries. The Bank providesloans for15-20years underwarrantymembers countries. IBRDapproved aPartnership Strategyfor Ukraine for2012-2016, which isa continuationof long-termdialoguewith our country inmattersof implementationof structural reforms. President'sprogramof economic reforms for2010-2014"(Wealthy) ProsperousSociety, CompetitiveEconomy, EffectiveState"was supported bythe IBRD Strategy. The main task of this program is using the advantages of IBRD cooperation for raising international competitive of Ukraine.
The EBRDis aninternational financialinstitution thatprovides assistance for countriesfrom Central Europe toCentral Asiafor providing market reforms. The main aim (goal) ofcooperation between Ukraine andthe EBRD–business (enterprising) development, financial support for small and medium businesses, deregulation and privatization. The total amountof creditgranted byEBRD for Ukraine is6.7billiondollars. Projectssupported by theEBRDin the energy sectorare unprecedentedscalefor the domestic economy of Ukraine. A striking exampleof fruitfulcooperation are"repairing highwaysKyiv- Chop", which estimated in 200 milliondollarsand "Modernization Unitnumber2of Khmelnitsky NPP (Nuclear power plant) and unit№4 of Rivne NPP" which worthed in 42 milliondollars.
But there is some problem in cooperations with IMO. There are: raising external debt, current influence on government activity, inadequaterequirementsIMO in realitiesof our economy, requirements of IMO which connected with our national security.
However, Ukraine's cooperationwith international financial institutionsis important forus, asintensifyinginvestment projects,stimulatethe developmentof private enterprise,leading toa competitivemarket environment.
On the time Ukraine gained independence geopolitical situation on the continent and in the world generally had changed fundamentally. The Cold War was superseded by globalization. Ukraine has been independent democratic state for almost 23 years, with its administration bodies, regulatory framework and thought-out strategy of domestic and foreign policy which endeavors to find its place in the new geopolitical area, even though, the reality doesn’t consort with formal notandum.
Despite Ukraine is the biggest country which is entirely located in Europe, has the population of almost 45,5 millions of people, natural resources, profitable communications and quite a big amount of neighbor countries for development of mutually beneficial relationships, our country rushes from shore to shore looking for more advantages, being used to meet the needs of other states, instead of modeling active geopolitical strategy to meet its national interests.That is why the definition of effective foreign policy vector is an urgent issue because Ukraine risks to occupy a peripheral location without establishing stable position in the international arena.
Last year this issue acquired special aggravation, when former Ukrainian government led by M.Azarov refused to sign Association Agreement with European Union (EU) and the revolution broke out. For the last six months Ukrainian nation has faced numerous threats and not only for its foreign policy but for its territory integrity, sovereignty, nation unity – existence of Ukrainian state as well. We became witnesses of political, economic, security crisis in the country. Euromaydan made V.Yanukovych escape in Russia and formed new government in Ukraine led by A.Yatsenyuk, with European integration as its main foreign policy aim. Russian Federation demonstrated explicitly negative attitude towards these events by withdrew military troops in Ukrainian territory, provoking separatist spirits, what was condemned by international society. Western countries confirmed support of Ukrainian European ambitions, however nowadays correctness of such geo-strategy and possibility of Ukraine’s existence as the biggest European state is questionable.
We exude three main stages of Ukrainian geopolitical development. The first stage covers whole 19thand 20thcentury without its last decade, when Ukrainian researchers focusing on the analysis of Ukrainian geographical position features, were forming possible vectors of foreign politics, which would facilitate nation consolidation, territory integrity and progressive development of Ukraine.
The beginning of the second stage is connected with global changes on the world political map: the end of bipolar world; the end of ones states’ existence and emergence of others; New Europe forming; integration processes’ activation. This period became watershed for Ukraine as well, for the country which gained independence, made first steps in establishing bilateral relations with country-victor of Cold War – the USA. Officially Kyiv was oriented on Western Europe, in practice most of advantages in foreign political strategy were provided for main Soviet Union successor – Russian Federation, what was caused by an insufficient level of compliance with western standards and great affinity with Russia because of belonging to one country over the previous years.
The third stage has begun in 2000s and it still continues. Ukraine has allocated two priority mainline foreign policy vectors: European integration or Eurasian integration, having determined with better prospects (with lower material and spatial-temporal and spiritual costs) to move towards the West.
Both directions have their advantages and disadvantages. Russia is close to Ukraine in cultural, spiritual and historical aspects; such cooperation doesn’t demand much effort in comparison with European integration processes; Russian side will provide us with many benefits, in particular – decrease the price for its main export article – gas, what is a sensitive issue for contemporary Ukraine. This used to be general idea according to deeper integration in eastern direction before the events of last winter and todays day. Russia is a big country with established imperialist habits and clearly defined national interests; by suggesting a close mutually beneficial partnership it sets the gain for itself: advantages partner’s benefits and exercises control over the management and behavior of other states’ in the international arena.
Speaking on specific system suggestions, primarily by offering their own vision through strategic partnership with Russia, Ukraine could put the end of uncertainty, clearly outlining the basic provisions that, under no circumstances can be subject to political bargaining. Without economic cooperation with Russia it will be difficult for Ukraine to make a qualitative breakthrough in its development. Stable relations with Ukraine are a prerequisite for strengthening Russian positions in Europe and consolidation of the former Soviet Union republics around it. Ukraine is interested in further maintaining of acquired in recent years dynamics of Ukrainian-Russian relations. An important task for Kyiv and Moscow as well is to create conditions for the stability of the current nature of bilateral cooperation. But now the first priority is the termination of confrontations in the eastern and southern regions of Ukraine, the suppression of separatist movements and conduct of presidential elections in Ukraine.
The Eurasian Economic Community (EAEC or EurAsEC), as an international economical organization created for Customs Union and Common Economic Space establishment as well as for the realization of other goals and tasks associated with the deepening of integration in economic and humanitarian fields, has actually the single purpose – to widen Moscow sphere of influence over former Soviet Union republics, to assimilate them and further absorption, so Ukrainian Eurasian integration give us only short-termed dividendsin exchange for the loss of sovereignty.
In the context of non-compliance with the provisions of the Budapest Memorandum by Russia, Ukraine becomes crucial for NATO as in terms of its new members’ defense so in terms of maintaining the Euro-Atlantic Partnership. The National Security and Defense Council of Ukraine decision to begin the process, the ultimate goal of which is to join NATO, is crucial for our countryas it defines not only the prospects of our external security, but also provides guarantees for domestic democratic and economic reforms.
European Union is the embodiment of democracy, prosperity, competitiveness and stability on the continent, attracting Ukrainians with standards of living in member countries, however, focus on it is a long-term prospective. Kyiv must realize all the aspects of an allocated course and move in his direction; advantage strategic partner Poland as the chief lobbyist for Ukraine in the EU; transform at all levels.
Nevertheless, European Union ambiguously refers to Ukraine, considering it still to be "false" state with an incompetent political elite and pro-Russian spirits; mentioning Russia, it should be noted that some member states of EU consider future strategy for Ukraine through Russia and its reaction to the promotion of Euro-Atlantic structures in the East. This is a so-called approach «Europe of two empires». Although today the second approach is more appropriate – «Europe without borders», which supports the implementation of shared values, standards and regulations across the continent. While analyzing Ukrainian and Russian foreign policies it is obvious that Russia is guided by the paradigm of the «Europe of two empires», denying the expansion of NATO and the EU to the east, while Ukraine has chosen paradigm, based on the idea of «Europe without borders».
Despite the refusal of the previous Ukrainian government to sign Association Agreement with European Union, people managed to defend and fulfill the desire of the Ukrainian nation, as the political part of Association Agreement has already been signed and henceforth sides are preparing to sign its economical part. EU is actively supporting us during this difficult time: the foundation for deeper European integration is being developed, financial assistance is being provided, there is a care and protection, in terms of relations with Russia.
Thus, the impact of third sides on the Russian-Ukrainian relations is quite significant and potentially it is going to increase, as well as the impact of the international community particularly on Russian Federation, namely the introduction of numerous sanctions in relation to current events in Ukrainian-Russian relations has considerable influence on the further actions of the Kremlin on the Ukrainian state.
It is a real breakthrough for the Ukrainians and the entire region as well; it is the beginning of a new period in our history that we create on our own in order to achieve the realization of our national interests, democratic development, preservation of the integrity of the state. The task of the Ukrainian government is to cultivate a healthy national consciousness of the population, taking into account all the advantages and disadvantages of the geopolitical situation while choosing a guide, as quickly and efficiently as possible to meet key national interests in the near future, and henceforth for the next generations, create stability in the region with a beneficial location of the state and not to create a field for possible conflict.
Environmental hazards on a global and local scale
There are a variety of environmental issues that affect the world today. The most common issues tend to be related to the consumption of resources and production of waste, which can result in the destruction of habitats, pollution, and sometimes shortages that may lead to conflict. Other environmental issues include the introduction of non-native species to new areas, where they cause a variety of problems.
Global Warming and Climate Change
The large scale burning of fossil fuels, such as oil, coal, and natural gas has led to possibly the best known, and most serious, of the environmental issues facing mankind today.The planet's temperature is rising. The trend is clear and unmistakable.
Every one of the past 37 years has been warmer than the 20th century average. The 12 warmest years on record have all occurred since 1998. 2012 was the hottest year ever recorded for the contiguous United States.
Globally, the average surface temperature has increased more than one degree Fahrenheit since the late 1800s. Most of that increase has occurred over just the past three decades.
Shortages of clean, drinkable water are a growing problem in many parts of the world. Rapidly increasing populations in some countries have put a strain on the sewage systems, with many rivers and streams becoming polluted with waste containing dangerous microorganisms. For some people, these rivers and streams may be the only source of water for washing, cooking and drinking. The large-scale use of water for agriculture and industry has depletedgroundwater in some regions, and in a number of coastal areas saltwater contamination is a serious problem.
Industry, and most forms of transport, release waste products that are harmful to humans, animals, and plants. In the high concentrations that may occur in urban areas, these can harm people directly by causing respiratory problems. They also undergo reactions in the atmosphere that produce acid rain, which can acidify soil and water, affecting plants and aquatic organisms, and damage stone buildings and monuments.
Many species of plants and animals have been introduced to new areas by humans, sometimes with disastrous consequences. In some cases, these introductions have been deliberate. These would include pets, as well as garden plants that have become naturalized and had an adverse effect on the local wildlife and plant life. In other cases, new species have been brought to an area by accident. Examples are pests and diseases carried by imported plants or exotic animals, and rats brought by ships
Most crops in the US are grown with the aid of various synthetic chemicals including pesticides, fertilizers, herbicides and fungicides. Toxic residues from these chemicals are found on conventionally grown fruit and vegetables. The Food Quality Protection Act (1996) recognizes that many of the chemicals used present unacceptably high health risks, particularly to infants and children.
Solutions to many of these problems will require action by governments across the globe, for example, to reduce burning of fossil fuels and develop renewable energy resources. Ordinary people, however, can make their own contributions; for example, cutting down on car journeys helps reduce levels of carbon dioxide. Companies can play a role by using teleconferencing facilities so that employees do not have to travel to meetings, and allowing staff to work online from home, where practical. Individuals can also help in many small ways, such as minimizing their use of garden fertilizers, not using them when rain is forecast, picking up litter and rubbish that might harm wildlife, and properly disposing of harmful chemicals.
Ministry of Environment Protection was founded in
Ukraine. Their tasks are to control the state of environment and
sources of pollution, to protect the water resources of Ukraine, to
extend the network of nature reserves and to maintain with
The Ukrainian Green Party is very active today. «Zeleny Svit» is the Ukrainian ecological newspaper. It calls on people to protect the nature and to use it in a more careful and economical manner for the benefit of the present and future generations.
Notable global environmental organizationsare the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP), the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change(IPCC), World Nature Organization (WNO), Greenpeace and Friends of the Earth.
Health promotion has been defined by the World Health Organization's (WHO) 2005 Bangkok Charter for Health Promotion in a Globalized World as "the process of enabling people to increase control over their health and its determinants, and thereby improve their health". The primary means of health promotion occur through developing healthypublic policy that addresses the prerequisites of health such as income, housing, food security, employment, and quality working conditions. More recent work has used the termHealth in All Policies to refer to the actions to incorporate health into all public policies. There is a tendency among public health officials and governments—and this is especially the case in neoliberal nations such as Canada and the USA—to reduce health promotion to health education and social marketing focused on changing behavioral risk factors.
Recent work in the UK (Delphi consultation exercise due to be published late 2009 by Royal Society of Public Health and the National Social Marketing Centre) on relationship between health promotion and social marketing has highlighted and reinforce the potential integrative nature of the approaches. While an independent review (NCC 'It's Our Health!' 2006) identified that some social marketing has in past adopted a narrow or limited approach, the UK has increasingly taken a lead in the discussion and developed a much more integrative and strategic approach which adopts a holistic approach, integrating the learning from effective health promotion approaches with relevant learning from social marketing and other disciplines. A key finding from the Delphi consultation was the need to avoid unnecessary and arbitrary 'methods wars' and instead focus on the issue of 'utility' and harnessing the potential of learning from multiple disciplines and sources. Such an approach is arguably how health promotion has developed over the years pulling in learning from different sectors and disciplines to enhance and develop.
Work site health focus on the prevention and the intervention that reduce the health risks of the employee. The U.S. Public Health Service recently issued a report titled "Physical Activity and Health: A Report of the Surgeon General" which provides a comprehensive review of the available scientific evidence about the relationship between physical activity and an individual's health status. The report shows that over 60% of Americans are not regularly active and that 25% are not active at all. There is very strong evidence linking physical activity to numerous health improvements. Health promotion can be performed in various locations. Among the settings that have received special attention are the community, health care facilities, schools, and worksites. Worksite health promotion, also known by terms such as "workplace health promotion," has been defined as "the combined efforts of employers, employees and society to improve the health and well-being of people at work". WHO states that the workplace "has been established as one of the priority settings for health promotion into the 21st century" because it influences "physical, mental, economic and social well-being" and "offers an ideal setting and infrastructure to support the promotion of health of a large audience".
Worksite health promotion programs (also called "workplace health promotion programs," "worksite wellness programs," or "workplace wellness programs") include exercise,nutrition, smoking cessation and stress management. Reviews and meta-analyses published between 2005 and 2008 that examined the scientific literature on worksite health promotion programs include the following:
A review of 13 studies published through January 2004 showed "strong evidence... for an effect on dietary intake, inconclusive evidence for an effect on physical activity, and no evidence for an effect on health risk indicators".
In the most recent of a series of updates to a review of "comprehensive health promotion and disease management programs at the worksite," Pelletier (2005) noted "positive clinical and cost outcomes" but also found declines in the number of relevant studies and their quality.
A "meta-evaluation" of 56 studies published 1982–2005 found that worksite health promotion produced on average a decrease of 26.8% in sick leave absenteeism, a decrease of 26.1% in health costs, a decrease of 32% in workers’ compensation costs and disability management claims costs, and a cost-benefit ratio of 5.81.A meta-analysis of 46 studies published in 1970–2005 found moderate, statistically significant effects of work health promotion, especially exercise, on "work ability" and "overall well-being"; furthermore, "sickness absences seem to be reduced by activities promoting healthy lifestyle".
A meta-analysis of 22 studies published 1997–2007 determined that workplace health promotion interventions led to "small" reductions in depression and anxiety.
A review of 119 studies suggested that successful work site health-promotion programs have attributes such as: assessing employees' health needs and tailoring programs to meet those needs; attaining high participation rates; promoting self care; targeting several health issues simultaneously; and offering different types of activities (e.g., group sessions as well as print materials).
Health promotion entities and projects by country
Worldwide, government agencies (such as health departments) and non-governmental organizations have substantial efforts in the area of health promotion. Some of these entities and projects are:
International and multinationalThe WHO and its Regional Offices such as the Pan American Health Organization are influential in health promotion around the world. The main eight health promotion campaigns marked by WHO are World Health Day, World Tuberculosis Day, World Blood Donor Day, World Immunization Week, World Malaria Day, World No Tobacco Day, World Hepatitis Day and World AIDS Day.The International Union for Health Promotion and Education, based in France, holds international, regional, and national conferences.
16. Fighting corruption in Ukraine and in Great Britain.
Corruption is a widespread and growing problem in Ukrainian society. In 2012's Transparency International Corruption Perceptions Index Ukraine was ranked 144th out of the 176 countries investigated (tied with Bangladesh, Cameroon, Central African Republic, and Syria).Back in 2007 Ukraine had taken 118th place (179 countries investigated that year).Ernst & Young (in 2012) put Ukraine among the three most corrupted nations of the world together with Colombia and Brazil.
United States diplomats have described Ukraine under Presidents Kuchma and Yushchenko as a kleptocracy, according to Wikileaks cables.
Over the years, several anti-corruption laws have been passed by the Ukrainian parliament. In September 2011 the National Anti-Corruption Committee was introduced.
After his election in late 2004 President Viktor Yushchenko promised a "War on Corruption". Several officials were indeed arrested and/or questioned early 2005 (among them later ministers in the Azarov Government Borys Kolesnikov and Yuri Boyko. Former Security Service of Ukraine Chairman Oleksandr Turchynov claimed that in the summer of 2005 Yushchenko prevented an investigation into allegedly fraudulent practices in the transport of Turkmen natural gas to Ukraine and prevented the arrest of Boyko for abuse of office while heading Naftogaz.
According to Ukrainians the most corrupt are the judiciary, the police, public servants, the health service and parliament.
Ukraine has adopted a comprehensive legal framework for dealing with corruption. The anti-corruption law, 'On the Principles of Preventing and Combating Corruption', was amended in 2012 to provide for the formation of a National Anti-Corruption Committee. The law now includes an income declaration requirement for public officials. In addition, the anti-corruption legislation regulates conflicts of interest by government officials and criminalises gifts and hospitality. Facilitation payments are not allowed under Ukrainian law. Nevertheless, the anti-corruption regulations have had a minimal effect on the level of fraud in political circles because of a weak rule of law and an absence of adequate enforcement. The 2012 amendments to the Ukrainian public procurement regulations have eradicated transparency within government procurement, allowing for the embezzlement of state funds. Abuse of power by politicians for illegitimate private gain is indicated as the main reason for the unattractiveness of Ukraine’s business climate, according to recent reports by the US Department of State and the Heritage Foundation.
The public will to fight against corrupt politicians and business elites culminated in a strong wave of public demonstrations against Victor Yanukovych’s regime in November 2013. The Euromaidan (Євромайдан) - the ongoing civil unrest in Ukraine - has resulted in significant changes to the political climate of Ukraine. For more detailed information about current political events in Ukraine, visit General Information and Euromaidan Demonstrations.
The UK is perceived to be experience relatively low levels of corruption in comparison with other states worldwide, scoring only 11th on Transparency International’s Corruptions Perception
Index in 2005.1 Very few cases of corruption are reported to the British Audit Commission every year. Between 1995/6 and 2003, an average of 43 cases were reported a year (with annual losses averaging £262,000). An average of 21 people a year were prosecuted under the three pieces of legislation on corruption between 1993 and 2003. Between 1998-2003, the Serious Fraud Office prosecuted only seven cases where corruption was the charge.
From 2003 till 2006 Significant legally-binding obligations undertaken by Britain as a result of international agreements have included the following:
1. The OECD Convention on Combating Bribery of Foreign Public Officials in International Business Transactions: This convention is legally binding on the UK and was implemented by Part 23 of the British Anti-Terrorism, Crime and Security Act of 2001.
2. Protocol to the Convention on the protection of the European Communities financial interests: also legally binding on the UK.
The UK’s Bribery Act 2010 (the Act) which will come into force on 1 July 2011 represents a strengthening of the UK position on bribery and corruption and animportant development in global anti-bribery legislation.In keeping with the US Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA), the current globalbenchmark, the Act makes bribery of foreign public officials an offense and extendsbeyond company employees to include the behavior of third parties acting on behalf ofa company. However, in certain respects the Act goes further than the FCPA. The Act:
• Covers all bribery, not just those that involve public officials
• Makes no exception for facilitation payments made to expedite routine governmental actions
• Makes it a corporate offense to fail to prevent bribery
• Makes it an offense not only to give but also to receive a bribe
With such wide-ranging scope, the Act is an important development in global anticorruption efforts, especially because the UK’s Serious Fraud Office (the SFO), the body tasked with enforcing the Act, has expressed a determination to enforce the Act internationally.
The extent to which it will be possible to use the Act to take action against overseas companies has not yet been legally tested, but these announcements are consistent with the recent aggressive cross-border enforcement of the FCPA and growing international coordination between regulators. As a result, it is important that organizations review their anti-corruption policies and procedures to ensure compliance with all relevant statutes.
The purpose of this document is to provide some practical thoughts on leading practice in the development of an anti-corruption compliance framework.
The provisions of the Act
The Act specifies four offenses:
• The general offense of offering, promising or giving a bribe
• The general offense of requesting or agreeing to receive a bribe
• A separate offense of bribery of a foreign public official
• A new corporate offense of failing to prevent bribery (applies automatically if anyone associated with the organization has paid a bribe)
The Act is designed to have the maximum deterrent effect. The definition of what constitutes a bribe is extremely broad and covers any financial or other advantage offered (not just given) to someone to induce them to act improperly. Similarly, the penalties for those found guilty of an offense under the Act can be severe, including unlimited fines andup to 10 years’ imprisonment.
The conduct by government officials of negotiations and other relations between natios.
The art or science of conducting such negotiations.
Skill in managing negotiations, handling people, etc., so that there is little orno ill will.
Diplomacy has existed since the beginning of the human race. The act of conducting negotiations between two persons, or two nations at a large scopeis essential to the upkeep of international affairs. Among the many functions of diplomacy, some include preventing war and violence, and fortifyingrelations between two nations. Diplomacy is most importantly used to complete a specific agenda. Therefore without diplomacy, much of the world’s affairs would be abolished, international organizations would not exist, and above all the world would be at a constant state of war. It is for diplomacy that certain countries can exist in harmony.
There has not been a documented start of diplomacy; however there have been instancesranging back to the 5th century where diplomacy arose in certain nations. Dating back to 432 B.C, the Congress of Sparta was an “illustration of diplomacy as organized by the Greek City States” (Nicolson 1). The origin of the word “diploma” comes from different sides of the earth. In Greece diploma meant “folded in two”, while in Ancient Rome the word was used to describe travel documents. Often the word diplomacy is given many meanings. Many times the words “policy” and the word “negotiation” be seen as synonyms; hence the word “diplomacy” and “foreign diplomacy” are deemedto be similar (Nicolson 3). These “synonyms” of diplomacy are all faulty. While they may be very similar in some cases, they are not the exactly the same. Sir Harold Nicolson who was an English Diplomat born in Tehran, Persia, states that: “Diplomacy is neither the invention nor the pastimeof some particular political system, but is an essential element in any reasonable relation between man and man and between nation and nation”
While many are not able to find a clear beginning or creation of diplomacy, modern diplomacy has become much more advancedand many aspects have changed over the years. The Peace of Westphalia in 1648 created the first modern diplomatic congress in addition to creating a new world order in central Europe based on state sovereignty. Much of Europe began to change after the introduction of modern diplomacy. For example, “France under Cardinal Richelieu introduced the modern approach to international relations, based on the nation-state and motivated by national interest as its ultimate purpose” (Kissinger 17). Every country in Europe contributed a little to the diplomacy the world has today. Many could argue that diplomacy is a product of society and history itself. Separation of powers, national interest, and a country’s sovereignty are only a few elements that were added to modern diplomatic history.
There are in fact many functions of diplomacy that make diplomacy an essential ingredient for any peaceful and efficient change. Over the course of diplomacy being in existence, the structure of diplomatic posts has changed from a looseone to an organized institution made for a specific purpose. While the structure of diplomatic posts has changed, the functions always remained the same.
There are four functions of diplomacy.
The first function involves “representing a state’s interests and conducting negotiations or discussions designed to identify common interests as well as areas of disagreement between the parties, for the purpose of achieving the state’s goals and avoiding conflict” (Ameri 1).
The second function of diplomacy involves “the gathering of information and subsequent identification and evaluation of the receiving state’s foreign policy goals” (Ameri 1).
The third major function of diplomacy is expansion of political, economic, and cultural ties between two countries (Ameri 2).
Finally, the fourth function of diplomacy is that “diplomacy is the facilitating or enforcing vehicle for the observation of international law” (Ameri 2).
The emphasis put on the ability to influence others to get them to do what you want. Diplomacy as “soft power” is the best way to do that – to attract them or co-optthem, so that they want what you want. The success of soft power heavily depends on the actor’s reputation within the international community, as well as the flow of information between actors. Thus, soft power is often associated with the rise of globalization and neoliberal international relations theory. Popular culture and media is regularly identified as a source of soft power
Internationally, the fight against terrorism is conducted, on the one hand, by countries cooperating within the United Nations (Counter-Terrorism Committee (CTC) of the U.N. Security Council) and on the other hand, by a coalition of more than 60 countries under U.S.leadership (Operation Enduring Freedom). The coalition comprises democracies, authoritarian governments and dictatorhips. As yet, there is very little cooperation between the Counter-Terrorism Committee (CTC), made up of Security Council members, and the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights (UNHCHR). The Commmission on Human Rights (CHR) does very little reporting on individual countries regarding the compliance of their measures against terrorism with human rights norms, whereas, in its thematic reporting, it does address important problems like torture. The second part of the study looks at the connection between security policy and human rights. In general, it can be said that statements on security policy from the USA, NATO and the EU refer to the fight against terrorism as a military task more and more often. This goes hand in hand with the explicit willingness to use military force anywhere in the world. While the EU, in this context, refers to the U.N. charter as the fundamental framework for international relations, the USA and NATO make no mention of the authority of the U.N. Security Council to legitimize the use of force beyond self-defense. Today, we refer to the slave trade as human trafficking, or trafficking in persons. According to the UN Office on Drugs and Crime, human trafficking “involves an act of recruiting, transporting, transferring, harbouring or receiving a person through a use of force, coercion or other means, for the purpose of exploiting them”, and constitutes a crime against humanity. Human trafficking is a crime that robs the individual of their rights, their dreams and their dignity. It is a global problem and no country is exempt. Every year millions of victims are trapped and exploited in what is considered a modern form of slavery. Data compiled in 2010 revealed that the total number of victims at any one time was 2.5 million. Trafficking affects every region of the world and generates tens of billions of dollars in profits for criminals each year.
On the fourth of July, America celebrates its birthday, Independence Day. This day is in remembrance of 1776 when the thirteen colonies declared their independence from Britain. The Declaration was written a year after the start of the American Revolutionary War and marks the beginning of a new nation, the USA.
This day often marks the official start of summer vacation. And what better way to start off the summer than with a good old American barbeque (cook out). Americans light up their grills, throw on the hot dogs and hamburgers and enjoy the afternoon with family and friends. For most, the day begins with attending a local Fourth of July parade and ends with a dazzling fireworks display. As fireworks are illegal in most states, cities and towns organize their own shows for the local community to safely enjoy. It is an evening where people come together, young and old, pull out their blankets and beach chairs and enjoy the happiness of the evening.
Just as July 4th marks the beginning of summer, Labor Day weekend brings it to a close. Labor Day is the first Monday in September. It is a day to recognize workers in America. Unlike other European countries who mark the day with parades, speeches and political demonstrations, Labor Day in the US is celebrated similarly to the Fourth of July with picnics, cook outs, baseball and other outdoor festivities. For most, it is a last chance to enjoy the summer vacation. Most college students start packing their bags and begin their trek back to campuses around the country, while families with school-age children are out shopping for ” back-to-school supplies” in preparation for their first day of school.
Other National Holidays and Traditions
Other national holidays that top the list are Thanksgiving, Easter, Christmas and the New Year celebration. National holidays and traditions are also celebrated among the various ethnic groups. To name a few, the Irish celebrate St. Patrick’s Day, the Italians honor various patron saints, the Jewish have Passover, Rash Hashanah, Yom Kippur, and Hannukkah and the Germans recognize Octoberfest as a day of feast.
Other holidays which are more a day of remembrance include Martin Luther King Jr’s birthday (January), Presidents Day (February), Memorial Day (May), to honor those who have died in wars, Columbus Day (October), and Veterans Day (November), formerly called Armistice Day which honors ALL veterans both living and deceased. Many federal and state offices, schools and varied businesses are closed. Local newspapers notify of public closings for the day.
Halloween and St. Valentine’s Day
You may be asking yourself, what about Halloween and St. Valentine’s Day? These are not national holidays, but events celebrated in various ways by young and old. They stem from old traditions that began back in time and have evolved into millions of dollars of revenue for store owners. From scary and funny costumes, to roses, chocolates and cards, the traditions keep growing and spreading. To the dismay of some, even countries like Norway have jumped aboard.
Holidays and Festivals in the Ukraine
Ukrainians, like other nations, have many traditions and holidays. During the Soviet era, some of the religious based holidays such as Easter and Christmas were officially discouraged. The celebration of these two holidays was ignored for many years, but have made a resurgence in the post Soviet era. Here is a list of some of the more popular Ukrainian holidays:
New Year’s Day. This holiday serves as the Ukrainian equivalent to Christmas in the United States. It is a wonderful time for children as well as for grown-ups, and is often called the family holiday. On New Year’s Eve, children decorate a fir or a pine tree with shining balls and toys. The mothers cook a festive dinner. On New Year’s Day there is an exchange of presents.
January 7, Eastern Orthodox Christmas. Unlike Christmas in America, this is primarily a religious holiday.
Second weekend in February, Easter. The traditional Easter greeting is “The Lord has resurrected!” On Saturday afternoon or Sunday morning people put an Easter cake, painted eggs, butter and cheese into a basket and go to church for the blessing of the food. “Pisanka” (a painted Easter egg) is one of the most interesting sorts of Ukrainian decorative art.
March 8, Women’s Day. This is an occasion to display love, tenderness and gratitude to those who care for us most – to mothers and grandmothers, sisters and daughters.
May 1-2, Spring and Labor Days. These primary Soviet holidays have lost their political meaning and are now traditional days off.
May 9, Victory Day. This is the day of commemoration of those who perished in the war against fascism.
August 24, Ukrainian Independence Day.
1.2 million people globally become victims of human trafficking every year, according to estimates provided by the United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF). Most of the victims are women and children used for cheap labor and sexual services by organized multinational criminal groups, warns the EU.
Voting in the United States is a
two party system. Every president since 1852 has been either a
Republican or a Democrat.
In the U.S., a "single-member district system" applies. The candidate who gets elected is the one who gets the highest number of votes in their respective state.
Presidents are elected indirectly. The voters are really voting for electors in each state.
In all states, the candidate who wins a plurality, receives all of that state's electoral votes. All together there are 538 electors (in the "Electoral College). It is very important to win in populous states.
To win the presidential election, a candidate must earn an absolute majority at least 270 of the 538 electoral votes cast nationwide.
Who can run for President?
He must be a natural-born citizen of the United States, be at least 35 years of age, and have been a resident of the United States for 14 years.
How long is the President in office?
He is in office for 4 years.
Can the President be reelected?
Yes. He can be reelected once. Overall he can be in office for 8 years.
Who can vote?
Anyone who is 18 years of age. There is no national list of eligible voters, so a citizen must first qualify by becoming registered. Citizens register to vote in conjunction with the place they live, if they move to a new location, they typically have to register again. Registration system has been designed to eliminate fraud.
Is the President elected directly?
No. Voters are voting for electors who are members of a party.
When is election day?
Election day is the Tuesday after the first Monday in November.
When is the Inauguration of the President?
The President will be inaugurated on January 20 in the year after the election. From this time he is in office.
What are primaries?
At the primaries the parties
nominate their candidates. This takes place about 1 year prior to
- closed / semi-closed primaries (e.g. Arizona)
- open primaries (e.g. Missouri)
- blanket primaries (e.g. Lousiana)
In some states (e.g. Iowa) there
are three levels.
Voters are voting for electors here, too. (e.g. North Dakota)
What is "Super Tuesday"
At this day there are pre-elections in at least 8 states. The winner of the primaries is most likely the candidate for the elections.
Kinds of Voting Technology
Elections in the United States
are administered at the state and local level, and the federal
government does not set mandatory standards for voting
technologies. 1. Paper Ballots
2. Lever Machines
4. Computer (push-buttons)
5. Marksense Forms
6. Electronic Voting
There is a total of 538 electors.
In December the electors meet in each states’s capitol to formally
elect the President.
The congress meets in joint session to count the electoral votes January 6.
Voting pattern in America
The turn out at the election is only 50%. The problem that has made worse the issue of voter representation is the fact that an individual must initiate voter registration well before election day.