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Archive for 8. Juni 2019

Kapitalismus geht auch ohne Demokratie

Posted by hkarner - 8. Juni 2019

Date: 07-06-2019
Source: Die Zeit

Der demokratische Kapitalismus westlicher Prägung könnte zum Auslaufmodell werden. China zeigt der Welt gerade, wie eine datengetriebene Planwirtschaft funktioniert.

Ein Essay von Thomas Beschorner, Miriam Meckel und Léa Steinacker

China zeigt der Welt, dass für einen funktionierenden Kapitalismus keine demokratischen Strukturen notwendig sind.

Thomas Beschorner ist Professor für Wirtschaftsethik und Direktor des Instituts für Wirtschaftsethik der Universität St.Gallen. Miriam Meckel ist Professorin für Kommunikationsmanagement an der Universität St.Gallen sowie Gründungsverlegerin der Digitalplattform ada. Léa Steinacker ist Chief Strategy Officer von ada.

Es gibt die Hoffnung, dass der Kapitalismus in naher Zukunft durch ein besseres System abgelöst werden könnte. Und es gibt die Hoffnung, dass er endlich wieder zu seinen Wurzeln der reinen freien Märkte zurückkehren könnte. Welche der beiden Position man auch immer bevorzugt – es gibt noch eine dritte Variante: die Revitalisierung der Planwirtschaft auf Datenbasis. Den Rest des Beitrags lesen »

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Taiwan’s computing titans are caught up in the US-China tech war

Posted by hkarner - 8. Juni 2019

Date: 07-06-2019
Source: The Economist

They would rather remain in the shadows

In the shadow of Taipei 101, the Taiwanese capital’s tallest skyscraper, 42,000 people attended Computex, one of the world’s biggest electronics trade expos, which concluded on June 1st. They bought, sold and ogled every electronic component imaginable. Neon-pulsating fans. Computer casings in every imaginable shade of beige. Infinite varieties of fibre-optic cables. And, of course, chips. If silicon had a smell, Computex would be oozing it.

The massive exhibition space is in fact a sideshow. The real action takes place high above, in the hotel suites of central Taipei. The world’s technology firms book them, then fly in for meetings with the Taiwanese companies that are the beating heart of the global electronics supply chain. Taiwan is, in effect, Computex writ large.

The largest Taiwanese tech companies are contract manufacturers, which make products for other firms rather than sell them directly to consumers. The combined sales of the 19 biggest last year totalled $394bn. They co-ordinate the fiendish logistics of getting hundreds of parts sourced from Asia and beyond to arrive in the right place at the right time, in order to keep their assembly plants, many located in China, humming. Largan, Pegatron, Quanta and tsmc are not household names. Their customers—Huawei, Apple, Amazon—are. But the global tech value chains atop which these illustrious firms sit would break without their Taiwanese links. Den Rest des Beitrags lesen »

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Once again, China’s richest region is pulling ahead of the others

Posted by hkarner - 8. Juni 2019

Date: 06-06-2019
Source: The Economist

The interior had been catching up with the southern coast. No longer

Motivational slogans do not get much blunter than the one hanging over the sewing machines in Li Zhiguo’s factory: “Work hard here to make money, don’t be disliked by your family”. He proudly holds up one of his products, a red chiffon dress with ruffled sleeves. Dozens more are wrapped up, awaiting shipment.

It is a scene that, on the surface, should please Chinese leaders. Mr Li’s factory is in Baiguan, a poor town in the central province of Hunan. The government has long wanted to spur growth deep inside the country, in part by getting low-end industries to leave the prosperous coast and move to places like Baiguan. The money, managers and machines in Mr Li’s factory are almost all transplants from the coast. “There’s advantages to being here. It’s easier to find workers,” he says. Den Rest des Beitrags lesen »

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Blue-collar capitalists

Posted by hkarner - 8. Juni 2019

Date: 06-06-2019
Source: The Economist: Schumpeter

Employee ownership has a lot going for it. But not if it becomes over-politicised

Ida tarbell, the great muckraker of the early 20th century, not only wielded her pen against Standard Oil. She also used it to advocate for better versions of capitalism. In “New Ideals in Business”, a book from 1916, she explained how William Cooper Procter, a pioneering Episcopalian, introduced profit sharing in 1887 and eventually share ownership for workers of Procter & Gamble (p&g), a consumer-goods firm. Lauding the impact on the company’s performance, she recounted the words of one employee: “Do you suppose I’m going to let a new man come in and loaf on his job…? It’s my profits that I’m looking out for now.” Den Rest des Beitrags lesen »

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New Huawei Phones Won’t Come With Facebook, Instagram or WhatsApp

Posted by hkarner - 8. Juni 2019

Date: 07-06-2019
Source: The Wall Street Journal

Facebook is the latest company to restrict access to its products following the U.S. blacklisting of the Chinese tech giant

Facebook will no longer have its apps pre-installed on Huawei smartphones.

Facebook Inc. will no longer allow its apps to come pre-installed on mobile devices made by Huawei Technologies Co. following the U.S. blacklisting of the Chinese tech giant, dealing another blow to its booming smartphone business.

Facebook, which owns popular apps including Instagram and WhatsApp, is one of many software makers whose apps come pre-installed on Huawei phones, which outsold Apple Inc.’s iPhone globally in the first quarter of this year. Huawei is now second only to Samsung Electronics Co.

Huawei will no longer be able to pre-install those apps, according to a person familiar with the matter, though those who already own Huawei phones will continue to have access to Facebook apps and updates. It isn’t clear if Huawei phone users without the apps will be able to download the apps and updates themselves. Den Rest des Beitrags lesen »

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The trouble with economics

Posted by hkarner - 8. Juni 2019

Date: 06-06-2019
Source: The Economist

Jonathan Aldred thinks economists are too reductive. Is he right?

Licence to be Bad: How Economics Corrupted Us. By Jonathan Aldred. Allen Lane; 320 pages; £25.

In thomas gradgrind, Charles Dickens created an educator who saw his pupils as “reasoning animals”, with heads that should be filled with facts and little more. In “Licence to be Bad”, Jonathan Aldred, an academic at Cambridge University, casts economists as the modern Gradgrinds. They exercise a baleful influence on political discourse, he maintains, by taking a narrow view of humans as essentially selfish creatures, forever trying to maximise their own well-being.

As Mr Aldred points out, economists have not always thought this way. Adam Smith is a hero of free-market enthusiasts but, as well as “The Wealth of Nations”, he wrote “The Theory of Moral Sentiments”, in which he opined: “How selfish soever man may be supposed, there are evidently some principles in his nature, which interest him in the fortunes of others, and render their happiness necessary to him.” In the 20th century John Maynard Keynes wrote that “economics is essentially a moral science and not a natural science. That is to say, it employs introspection and judgments of value.” Den Rest des Beitrags lesen »

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President Donald Trump is trashing deals in favour of tariffs

Posted by hkarner - 8. Juni 2019

Date: 07-06-2019
Source: The Economist

That may backfire on America

New fronts in President Donald Trump’s assault on the global trading system are opening up by the day. On May 30th he dropped a bombshell on Mexico, threatening a 5% tariff on all its exports to America, rising to 25% by October if immigration flows do not fall. On May 31st he turned to India, announcing the end of longstanding trade preferences on around $6bn-worth of its exports to America. A proposal is being considered to enable the administration to increase tariffs on imports from countries deemed to be manipulating their currencies. The appointment of judges to the court of appeals of the World Trade Organisation (wto) is being blocked. Japan and the European Union are on notice that America may impose tariffs on their cars. Meanwhile the biggest trade fight of all, with China, is getting bloodier.

The trade element of Trumponomics is a striking departure from previous administrations’ policies, and a stiff challenge to the multilateral trading system. But critics must face some uncomfortable truths. The first is that some of America’s frustrations with its trading partners are justified. China’s system of subsidies and state-directed capitalism harms competing firms elsewhere, and raises questions about surveillance and security. India’s protectionism has long been an obstacle to trade liberalisation. And the wto’s dispute-settlement system has serious weaknesses. Den Rest des Beitrags lesen »

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