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Archive for 12. September 2018

EU-Parlament stimmt für Strafverfahren gegen Ungarn

Posted by hkarner - 12. September 2018

SPIEGEL ONLINE

12. September 2018, 13:16 Uhr

Orbán-Regierung

EU-Parlament stimmt für Strafverfahren gegen Ungarn

Die Mehrheit war deutlich: Das EU-Parlament fordert mit 448 gegen 197 Stimmen ein Strafverfahren wegen Rechtsstaatsverstößen gegen die ungarische Regierung. Das kann zum Entzug der Stimmrechte im Ministerrat führen.

Das Europaparlament bringt ein Strafverfahren gegen Ungarn wegen Rechtsstaatsverstößen auf den Weg. Die Abgeordneten in Straßburg stimmten dem Antrag mit der erforderlichen Zweidrittelmehrheit zu. 448 Abgeordnete stimmten dafür, 197 dagegen, 48 enthielten sich.

Mit dem Votum fordert das Parlament den Rat der EU-Mitgliedstaaten auf, ein Strafverfahren nach Artikel 7 gegen Ungarn zu eröffnen. Es kann im Extremfall zum Entzug der Stimmrechte Ungarns in der EU führen. Es wäre das erste Mal in der Geschichte des Parlaments, dass es zu einem solchen Schritt kommt.

Hintergrund dafür ist ein Bericht der Grünen-Abgeordneten Judith Sargentini. Sie wirft Orbán vor, unabhängige Richter durch regierungstreue ersetzt zu haben. Außerdem zweigten sich demnach Mitglieder der Regierung EU-Gelder für sich und ihre Freunde und Familien ab. Seit 2010 gehe das so, immer wieder habe das EU-Parlament Alarm geschlagen. Insgesamt sind 13 Punkte aufgelistet. Sargentini bezieht sich auf offizielle Befunde von Institutionen wie den Vereinten Nationen, der Organisation für Sicherheit und Zusammenarbeit in Europa (OSZE) und dem Europarat. Den Rest des Beitrags lesen »

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See Food: Why Robots Are Producing More of What You Eat

Posted by hkarner - 12. September 2018

Date: 11-09-2018
Source: The Wall Street Journal

Vision-automation technology is taking over the factory floor, a testing ground for adoption in self-driving cars, drones

Before it can drive your car, vision technology must first be able to cut your sausage.

Robots that see underpin the future of self-driving cars, humanoid robots and autonomous drones.

Right now, they’re serving their apprenticeship sizing up sausages.

Food manufacturers are combining advances in laser vision with artificial-intelligence software so that automated arms can carry out more-complex tasks, such as slicing chicken cutlets precisely or inspecting toppings on machine-made pizzas. At a sausage factory, more-powerful cameras and quicker processors enable robots to detect the twisted point between two cylindrical wieners fast enough that they can be cut apart at the rate of 200 a minute. Den Rest des Beitrags lesen »

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A Fragmented Multilateralism?

Posted by hkarner - 12. September 2018

Kemal Derviş, former Minister of Economic Affairs of Turkey and former Administrator for the United Nations Development Program (UNDP), is Senior Fellow at the Brookings Institution.++++

With multilateral frameworks under attack, a new system in which country groupings – based on, say, geography or worldview – would formulate their own sets of rules may seem like a viable alternative. But the trend toward increasingly close economic and even social interdependence demands global rules and standards.

WASHINGTON, DC – Amid ongoing attacks by US President Donald Trump, the battle for the future of multilateralism has commenced. Previous demands for pragmatic reforms have escalated into pressure for the wholesale transformation – or even total destruction – of the global framework of multilateral institutions. Trump seems to prefer a “system” in which bilateral deals replace the multilateral rules-based order. As the US is still the world’s most advanced (and one of the largest in terms of market prices) economy in the world, he believes America can get the best “deal” by negotiating alone, unbound by international rules – a view that extends to military affairs.

Although multilateralism had made substantial progress since the end of the Second World War, there was a need for continuous reform, owing to changes in the structure of the world economy. By the late 1990s, emerging-market economies had grown in size and market share, overtaking the “Quad” (the US, Canada, the European Union, and Japan), which had dominated the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade and the GATT’s successor, the World Trade Organization. A similar change in “economic weight” affected the International Monetary Fund and the World Bank. At the heart of this change was the spectacular growth of China Den Rest des Beitrags lesen »

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Warum die Google-Steuer in der EU plötzlich auf Widerstand stößt

Posted by hkarner - 12. September 2018

András Szigetvari, 11. September 2018, 06:00 derstandard.at

Die EU wollte dafür sorgen, dass die großen IT-Konzerne in Europa ihre Gewinne versteuern, eine rasche Einigung galt als sicher. Nun wackelt das Projekt

Es war nur eine kurze Erklärung vom Bund der deutschen Industrie (BDI). Vergangene Woche teilte der BDI mit, dass er sich gegen die „Einführung einer Digitalsteuer“ in Europa ausspricht. Die Steuer würde „mehr Schaden als Nutzen“ bringen, Deutschland solle das Vorhaben nicht länger unterstützen. Mit der Digitalsteuer sollen große IT-Unternehmen wie Google, Facebook, Airbnb und Uber in Europa künftig effektiver besteuert werden. In vielen EU-Ländern zahlen die genannten Konzerne keine oder so gut wie keine Abgaben auf ihre Gewinne. Legendär ist der Steuersatz von 0,0005 Prozent, den Apple jahrelang auf seine Profite in der EU berappt hat.

Berlin skeptisch

Deutsche Industrieunternehmen sprechen sich also gegen die Digitalsteuer aus, obwohl diese gar nicht für sie gedacht ist. Die Skepsis hat inzwischen auch die Bundesregierung in Berlin ergriffen. Das wurde beim Treffen der EU-Finanzminister vergangene Woche in Wien offensichtlich. Neben den kleinen Staaten wie Irland und Malta, deren Modelle darauf aufbauen, sich für global tätige Konzerne als Niedrigsteuerländer anzubieten, wirkte auch Deutschland plötzlich wenig begeistert von der Digitalsteuer. Finanzminister Olaf Scholz (SPD) warnte in Wien vor Schnellschüssen und betonte ansonsten nur, wie komplex das ganze Thema sei. Was aber fürchten die Deutschen, deren Wort in den europäischen Debatten so viel Gewicht hat? Die Antwort auf diese Frage verrät viel darüber, warum es in Europa schwierig wird, bei einer Digitalsteuer voranzukommen. Den Rest des Beitrags lesen »

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Who Really Creates Value in an Economy?

Posted by hkarner - 12. September 2018

Mariana Mazzucato, Professor in the Economics of Innovation and Public Value and Director of the Institute for Innovation and Public Purpose at University College London, is the author of The Value of Everything: Making and Taking in the Global Economy.

Ten years after the global economic crisis, profits have recovered, but investment remains weak. Ultimately, the reason is that economic policy continues to be informed by neoliberal ideology and its academic cousin, “public choice” theory, rather than by historical experience.

LONDON – After the 2008 global financial crisis, a consensus emerged that the public sector had a responsibility to intervene to bail out systemically important banks and stimulate economic growth. But that consensus proved short-lived, and soon the public sector’s economic interventions came to be viewed as the main cause of the crisis, and thus needed to be reversed. This turned out to be a grave mistake.

In Europe, in particular, governments were lambasted for their high debts, even though private debt, not public borrowing, caused the collapse. Many were instructed to introduce austerity, rather than to stimulate growth with counter-cyclical policies. Meanwhile, the state was expected to pursue financial-sector reforms, which, together with a revival of investment and industry, were supposed to restore competitiveness. Den Rest des Beitrags lesen »

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Hungary’s Orban Tests EU’s Ability to Enforce Rule of Law

Posted by hkarner - 12. September 2018

Date: 11-09-2018
Source: The Wall Street Journal

Prime minister pillories bloc’s lawmakers as elites, but he has cultivated ties with traditional parties that may shield him from censure motion

Viktor Orban has been dubbed the “Trump before Trump” by former White House adviser Steve Bannon.

Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban has built almost unchecked power at home by attacking the European Union as a club of liberal, internationalist elites. Now he is counting on some of them to protect him from censure by the bloc.

A majority of lawmakers in the European Parliament, the EU’s legislative arm, wants member countries to admonish Hungary, as they did last year with Poland, for failing to uphold European legal standards. But for the vote to pass on Wednesday, a two-third majority of the 751-strong parliament is needed.

Whatever the outcome, Mr. Orban is likely to emerge unscathed thanks to his skills in testing the limits of what is acceptable in a Western democracy.

Dubbed the “Trump before Trump” by former White House adviser Steve Bannon, Mr. Orban rose to power by pillorying the EU. But unlike President Trump, who has lambasted political establishments on both sides of the Atlantic, Mr. Orban over the past decade cultivated links with Europe’s traditional parties. Their support could be pivotal in a vote that will test the EU’s authority to check the powers of nationalists.

Mr. Orban will have the chance to defend his government in a speech to the European Parliament on Tuesday, in which he is expected to appeal to some of those supporters, who span members of German Chancellor Angela Merkel’s party, British conservatives and Italian lawmakers in the far-right League party.

His government has attacked the vote as a “witch hunt,” with government spokesman Laszlo Kovacs on Monday accusing lawmakers of perpetrating lies to punish Hungary for its opposition to liberal migration policies.

The lead drafter of the censure, Judith Sargentini, a Dutch lawmaker from the leftist Greens party, last week said her motion was based on the findings of many international bodies critical of Mr. Orban. “There is no turning back to a normal functioning democracy in Hungary,” she said.
Den Rest des Beitrags lesen »

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