Föhrenbergkreis Finanzwirtschaft

Unkonventionelle Lösungen für eine zukunftsfähige Gesellschaft

Posts Tagged ‘NYT’

Pure Class Warfare, With Extra Contempt

Posted by hkarner - 26. Juni 2017

In this sense – and in only this sense – what we’re seeing now is a departure from previous Republican practice.

In the past, laws that would take from the poor and working class while giving to the rich came with excuses. Tax cuts, their sponsors declared, would unleash market dynamism and make everyone more prosperous. Deregulation would increase efficiency and lower prices. It was all voodoo; the promises never came true. But at least there was some pretense of working for the common good.

Now we have none of this. This bill does nothing to reduce health care costs. It does nothing to improve the functioning of health insurance markets – in fact, it will send them into death spirals by reducing subsidies and eliminating the individual mandate. There is nothing at all in the bill that will make health care more affordable for those currently having trouble paying for it. And it will gradually squeeze Medicaid, eventually destroying any possibility of insurance for millions. Den Rest des Beitrags lesen »

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Making Ignorance Great Again

Posted by hkarner - 6. Juni 2017

Date: 05-06-2017
Source: The New York Times: Paul Krugman

Donald Trump just took us out of the Paris climate accord for no good reason. I don’t mean that his decision was wrong. I mean, literally, that he didn’t offer any substantive justification for that decision. Oh, he threw around a few numbers about supposed job losses, but nobody believes that he knows or cares where those numbers came from. It was just what he felt like doing.

And here’s the thing: What just happened on climate isn’t an unusual case — and Trump isn’t especially unusual for a modern Republican. For today’s G.O.P. doesn’t do substance; it doesn’t assemble evidence, or do analysis to formulate or even to justify its policy positions. Facts and hard thinking aren’t wanted, and anyone who tries to bring such things into the discussion is the enemy.

Consider another huge policy area, health care. How was Trumpcare put together? Did the administration and its allies consult with experts, study previous experience with health reform, and try to devise a plan that made sense? Of course not. In fact, House leaders made a point of ramming a bill through before the Congressional Budget Office, or for that matter anyone else, could assess its likely impact. Den Rest des Beitrags lesen »

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Trump’s Off-the-Cuff Tweets Strain Foreign Ties

Posted by hkarner - 6. Juni 2017

Date: 05-06-2017
Source: The New York Times

WASHINGTON — On one level, President Trump reacted to Saturday night’s terrorist attack in London much as his predecessors might have. He expressed solidarity and telephoned Britain’s prime minister to offer condolences. “WE ARE WITH YOU,” he wrote to Britons.

But even as the investigation into the attack was getting underway, Mr. Trump wasted little time in using the episode to defend his hotly disputed travel ban on visitors from certain predominantly Muslim countries and to criticize the judges who have blocked it. And by Sunday morning, he decided to go after the mayor of London as not being tough enough on terrorism.

Along the way, he mischaracterized the mayor’s position, renewed a trans-Atlantic feud stretching back a year and widened his rift with the United States’ traditional European allies a bit further. And he set off a chain reaction in the news media world, triggering partisan reactions that illustrated just how polarized both the United States and the world have become about the uninhibited, Twitter-obsessed president. Den Rest des Beitrags lesen »

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Trump Gratuitously Rejects the Paris Climate Accord

Posted by hkarner - 2. Juni 2017

Date: 02-06-2017
Source: The New York Times By Paul Krugman

President Trump on Thursday announcing the United States’ withdraw from the Paris climate change accord.

As Donald Trump does his best to destroy the world’s hopes of reining in climate change, let’s be clear about one thing: This has nothing to do with serving America’s national interest. The U.S. economy, in particular, would do just fine under the Paris accord. This isn’t about nationalism; mainly, it’s about sheer spite.

About the economics: At this point, I think, we have a pretty good idea of what a low-emissions economy would look like. I’m sure that energy experts will disagree on the details, but the broad outline isn’t hard to describe.

Clearly, it would be an economy running on electricity — electric cars, electric heat, with internal combustion engines rare. The bulk of that electricity would, in turn, come from nonpolluting sources: wind, solar and, yes, probably nuclear.

Of course, sometimes the wind doesn’t blow or the sun shine when people want power. But there are multiple ways to deal with that issue: a robust grid that can ship electricity to where it’s needed; storage of various forms (batteries, but also maybe things like pumped hydro); dynamic pricing that encourages customers to use less power when it’s scarce and more when it isn’t; and some surge capacity — probably from relatively low-emission natural-gas-fired generators — to cope with whatever mismatch remains. Den Rest des Beitrags lesen »

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Blind Spots in Trump’s Trade Tirade Against Germany

Posted by hkarner - 1. Juni 2017

Date: 31-05-2017
Source: The New York Times

President Trump and Chancellor Angela Merkel of Germany

WASHINGTON — The last time relations between the United States and Europe were this bad — in the spring of 2003, during the buildup to the invasion of Iraq — the administration of George W. Bush decided to “punish France, ignore Germany and forgive Russia,” in a phrase attributed to the national security adviser at the time, Condoleezza Rice.

Now, President Trump has flipped the formula, punishing Germany while largely ignoring France. (His conciliatory approach to Russia seems more or less in line with the Mr. Bush of 2003.)

The difference this time is trade. Germany runs a chronic, yawning trade surplus with the United States, which Trump administration officials say Germany has widened by exploiting a weak euro to put American exports at a disadvantage. That, more than differences over NATO, Russia or climate change, is driving a wedge between the two countries. Den Rest des Beitrags lesen »

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Merkel, After Discordant G-7 Meeting, Is Looking Past Trump

Posted by hkarner - 30. Mai 2017

Date: 29-05-2017
Source: The New York Times

Chancellor Angela Merkel of Germany in Munich on Sunday. “The times in which we could rely fully on others, they are somewhat over,” she said.

BERLIN — Chancellor Angela Merkel of Germany, Europe’s most influential leader, has concluded, after three days of trans-Atlantic meetings, that the United States of President Trump is not the reliable partner her country and the Continent have automatically depended on in the past.

Clearly disappointed with Mr. Trump’s positions on NATO, Russia, climate change and trade, Ms. Merkel said in Munich on Sunday that traditional alliances were no longer as steadfast as they once were and that Europe should pay more attention to its own interests “and really take our fate into our own hands.”

“The times in which we could rely fully on others — they are somewhat over,” Ms. Merkel added, speaking on the campaign trail after a contentious NATO summit meeting in Brussels and a Group of 7 meeting in Italy. “This is what I experienced in the last few days.” Den Rest des Beitrags lesen »

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Is China Outsmarting America in A.I.?

Posted by hkarner - 29. Mai 2017

Date: 28-05-2017
Source: The New York Times

HONG KONG — Sören Schwertfeger finished his postdoctorate research on autonomous robots in Germany, and seemed set to go to Europe or the United States, where artificial intelligence was pioneered and established.

Instead, he went to China.

“You couldn’t have started a lab like mine elsewhere,” Mr. Schwertfeger said.

The balance of power in technology is shifting. China, which for years watched enviously as the West invented the software and the chips powering today’s digital age, has become a major player in artificial intelligence, what some think may be the most important technology of the future. Experts widely believe China is only a step behind the United States. Den Rest des Beitrags lesen »

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Banksy’s View of ‘Brexit’? It’s in the Stars

Posted by hkarner - 10. Mai 2017

Date: 09-05-2017
Source: The New York Times

The artist Banksy left a mural in Dover, England, depicting a workman chipping away at a star on the European Union flag.

LONDON — The three-story mural showing a workman chipping away at one of the 12 stars of the European Union flag appeared mysteriously in Dover, England, over the weekend, at once banal and symbolically poignant.

Before the paint had dried, social media was swirling with the well-trodden guessing game as to whether the intricate stenciled imagery belonged to Banksy, the enigmatic and anonymous guerrilla street artist whose work has graced walls from Britain to the West Bank.

The mystery was solved when Banksy posted photographs of the work on his official Instagram feed on Sunday, perhaps timed to coincide with the French presidential vote — which, as it turned out, the young and ardently pro-European Union former investment banker Emmanuel Macron won decisively. Den Rest des Beitrags lesen »

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Emmanuel Macron Embraces E.U. to Put France ‘Back in the Picture’

Posted by hkarner - 10. Mai 2017

Date: 09-05-2017
Source: The New York Times

LONDON — It was a striking moment when Emmanuel Macron, newly elected president of France, torchbearer of a new politics, strode onto a courtyard of the Louvre to celebrate his victory: As the crowd cheered, waving the tricolor French flag, the choice of music was “Ode to Joy,” the anthem of the European Union. Some people even waved the bloc’s flag, with its circle of golden stars.

For the past year, and longer, the European Union has been politically radioactive, deemed untouchable by most mainstream candidates for national office in Europe. Yet Mr. Macron, 39, not only embraced the embattled bloc, he proclaimed membership of it to be a necessity for France’s future: needful of reform, certainly, but something to embrace rather than run from. And he defeated the most europhobic of opponents, the far-right nationalist Marine Le Pen. Den Rest des Beitrags lesen »

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What’s the Matter With Europe?

Posted by hkarner - 5. Mai 2017

Date: 05-05-2017
Source: The New York Times By Paul Krugman

On Sunday France will hold its presidential runoff. Most observers expect Emmanuel Macron, a centrist, to defeat Marine Le Pen, the white nationalist — please, let’s stop dignifying this stuff by calling it “populism.” And I’m pretty sure that Times rules allow me to state directly that I very much hope the conventional wisdom is right. A Le Pen victory would be a disaster for Europe and the world.

Yet I also think it’s fair to ask a couple of questions about what’s going on. First, how did things get to this point? Second, would a Le Pen defeat be anything more than a temporary reprieve from the ongoing European crisis?

Some background: Like everyone on this side of the Atlantic, I can’t help seeing France in part through Trump-colored glasses. But it’s important to realize that the parallels between French and American politics exist despite big differences in underlying economic and social trends. Den Rest des Beitrags lesen »

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