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Wall Street Journal (May 17)

2018/ 05/ 20 by jd in Global News

“American women are having children at the lowest rate on record, with the number of babies born in the U.S. last year dropping to a 30-year low…. The figures suggest that a number of women who put off having babies after the 2007-09 recession are forgoing them altogether.” This could spell trouble as America’s aging population is already “creating a funding imbalance that strains the social safety net that supports the elderly.”

 

New Yorker (May 14)

2018/ 05/ 16 by jd in Global News

National Security Adviser John Bolton said moving the U.S. Embassy to Jerusalem was “merely ‘a recognition of reality,’ but it was actually a suspension of disbelief.” Though dignitaries at the opening ceremony were exuberant, “none of this alleviated the sinking feeling that young Gazans had gained the world’s attention, and sympathy, through their deaths” as Turkey and South Africa recalled their ambassadors to Israel while other countries lodged condemnations.

 

The Guardian (May 13)

2018/ 05/ 14 by jd in Global News

“The American president has thrown into confusion old alliances and imperilled Middle Eastern peace.” His “stark rejection of the multilateral 2015 nuclear deal with Iran poses complex and momentous challenges for Europe, and the UK in particular. This reckless US action upsets the geopolitical furniture in troubling ways. The European democracies now find themselves at odds with their principal ally on an issue of fundamental importance to their security and to peace in the Middle East. By insisting they will uphold the Iran deal… European countries have embarked on a collision course with Washington.”

 

New York Times (May 7)

2018/ 05/ 08 by jd in Global News

“It’s breathtaking and yet, by now, so predictable. Like aspiring authoritarians everywhere, Mr. Trump sees law enforcement in intensely personal terms. When the law investigates you, it’s a witch hunt; when it’s used to punish your enemies, it’s an essential tool…. Americans should remember May 9, 2017,” the day Trump fired FBI director James Comey, “as the beginning of one of the great tests of American democracy.”

 

Chicago Tribune (May 6)

2018/ 05/ 06 by jd in Global News

The Migratory Bird Treaty was enacted to prevent other birds from following the fate of passenger pigeons. Now, however, “the Interior Department has announced a sharp change in how it interprets the law,” which will essentially create a huge loophole that will “excuse any bird deaths that result from accidents, no matter how large or preventable, and limit penalties to cases of deliberate killing. So if a company sprayed pesticides with the purpose of killing a lot of birds, it would be guilty. But if it sprayed the same pesticides to get rid of insects and killed a lot of birds in the process, it would be in the clear.” This is clearly “a new threat to migratory birds.”

 

Time (May 3)

2018/ 05/ 03 by jd in Global News

“Diplomacy is subtle, atomic science complex. But the perceived villainy of Iran by the average American is the stuff of cartoons.” Opponents of the nuclear deal have been keen to exploit this antipathy. According to Gallup, “84% of the American public viewed Iran ‘unfavorably,’” when the deal was signed and with the constant stoking of fear there’s little reason to believe that number has gone down.

 

CNBC (April 27)

2018/ 04/ 29 by jd in Global News

“So is it really the end of the American car on its home turf? From the way Detroit’s major executives are talking, it would seem so. Ford said Wednesday it will only offer two new cars in North America over the coming years…. GM is moving along the same lines.”

 

The Atlantic (April 25)

2018/ 04/ 26 by jd in Global News

“More and more Americans are first sharing a home, then having children. Marriage comes later, if at all.” According to the Pew Research Center “35 percent of all unmarried parents are now living together, up from 20 percent of unmarried parents in 1997” and less than 1 percent in 1968. Aside from changing social norms, much of the trend appears to be linked to economic reasons and financial instability. “In response to an unintended pregnancy, a couple is three times more likely to move in together than get married.”

 

Reuters (April 23)

2018/ 04/ 24 by jd in Global News

“For investors, the key question is whether the ECB’s carefully calibrated exit plan from its ultra easy policy could be scuppered by trade tensions, especially if the dispute between the United States and China sucks in the euro zone. The ECB would have to alter its march towards a more normal policy stance if growing risks from protectionism, exchange rates or market swings end up depressing inflation.”

 

Washington Post (April 18)

2018/ 04/ 20 by jd in Global News

“Nothing like this has happened in human history…. Men outnumber women by 70 million in China and India.” The results are “far-reaching: Beyond an epidemic of loneliness, the imbalance distorts labor markets, drives up savings rates in China and drives down consumption, artificially inflates certain property values, and parallels increases in violent crime, trafficking or prostitution.” Moreover the consequences extend all the way to Europe and the U.S.

 

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