Macho men: Tough-guy leaders usher in controversy and questions across global politics (Bangkok Post)

                  A handful of unabashedly macho politicians have begun to redefine global politics through their partiality for blunt pragmatism over political correctness. From Rodrigo Duterte in the Philippines and Prayut Chan-o-cha in Thailand to Donald Trump in the United States and Vladimir Putin in Russia, the modus …

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The self-help gurus trading advice and inspiration for cash (Southeast Asia Globe)

The region’s swelling middle class is fuelling a rise in Southeast Asian self-help gurus dispensing motivation and advice Like many Filipinos her age in Manila, 24-year-old Maureen Usacdin wrestles with the daily struggles of city life. First, there is the notorious traffic, which pollutes her lungs and only promises to worsen as people pile into Metro Manilafaster than …

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Inside the the secret world of accent training (BBC Capital)

If you’re having trouble understanding your colleagues in other countries, try taking a leaf out of the Filipinos’ book. Call centres in the Southeast Asian nation are training twenty-somethings to master a diverse — and often difficult — range of English accents, so that customers may never know they are talking to someone up to …

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Bangkok shouldn’t be good for expats — but it is (BBC Capital)

Many expats try to overlook the more unseemly elements of life in Bangkok, like its sex industry. (Credit:Quynh Anh Nguyen/GettyImages) At face value, Bangkok shouldn’t be a great place for an expat assignment. The threat of political instability is the highest in the region, next to Indonesia. The Thai economy continues to be outshined by neighbours: growth projections for …

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FARC rebel rehab hopes to create lasting peace in Colombia (Newsweek)

BOGOTA, COLOMBIA — It was 3 a.m. one night in November when Boris Forero decided to leave the remote jungle camp at El Naranjal, convinced that the pattering of tropical rain and cover of darkness would conceal his escape. His heart was racing, and he felt torn between missing his friends—the guerrillas he fought beside for …

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