jerryking + u.s.   102

US declining interest in history presents risk to democracy
May 2, 2019 | Financial Times | by Edward Luce.

America today has found a less bloodthirsty way of erasing its memory by losing interest in its past. From an already low base, the number of American students majoring in history has dropped by more than a third since 2008. Barely one in two hundred American undergraduates now specialise in history......Donald Trump is a fitting leader for such times. He had to be told who Andrew Jackson was.....He also seems to think that Frederick Douglass, the escaped slave and 19th century abolitionist, is among us still.....But America’s 45th president can hardly be blamed for history’s unpopularity. Culpability for that precedes Mr Trump and is spread evenly between liberals, conservatives, faculty and parents........Courses on intellectual, diplomatic and political history are being replaced at some of America’s best universities by culture studies that highlight grievances at the expense of breadth.......Then there is the drumbeat of STEM — science, technology, engineering and mathematics. Most US states now mandate tests only in maths and English, at the expense of history and civic education...... In a recent survey, only 26 per cent of Americans could identify all three branches of government. More than half could not name a single justice on the US Supreme Court.....
the biggest culprit is the widespread belief that “soft skills” — such as philosophy and English, which are both in similar decline to history — do not lead to well-paid jobs.....folk prejudice against history is hard to shake. In an ever more algorithmic world, people believe that humanities are irrelevant. The spread of automation should put a greater premium on qualities that computers lack, such as intuitive intelligence, management skills and critical reasoning. Properly taught that is what a humanities education provides.......People ought to be able to grasp the basic features of their democracy. [Abiding] Faith in a historic theory only fuels a false sense of certainty....What may work for individual careers poses a collective risk to US democracy. The demise of strong civics coincides with waning voter turnout, a decline in joining associations, fewer citizen’s initiatives — and other qualities once associated with American vigour......There is no scientific metric for gullibility. Nor can we quantitatively prove that civic ignorance imposes a political cost on society. These are questions of judgment. But if America’s origins tell us anything it is that a well-informed citizenry creates a stronger society.
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here is what robots can't do -- create art, deep meaning, move our souls, help us to understand and thus operate in the world, inspire deeper thought, care for one another, help the environment where we live.......The role of the human is not to be dispassionate, depersonalized or neutral. It is precisely the emotive traits that are rewarded: the voracious lust for understanding, the enthusiasm for work, the ability to grasp the gist, the empathetic sensitivity to what will attract attention and linger in the mind. Unable to compete when it comes to calculation, the best workers will come with heart in hand.
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algorithms  automation  citizen_engagement  civics  Colleges_&_Universities  critical_thinking  democracy  Donald_Trump  Edward_Luce  empathy  engaged_citizenry  foundational  historians  history  historical_amnesia  humanities  ignorance  political_literacy  sense-making  soft_skills  STEM  threats  U.S.  vulnerabilities 
may 2019 by jerryking
The U.S. Is Ceding the Pacific to China
March 3, 2019 | WSJ | By Mark Helprin.

While Washington’s focus is elsewhere, Beijing plays the long game—that means preparing for war.

The only effective leverage on China, and by extension North Korea—which otherwise will retain nuclear weapons whether overtly or covertly but certainly—is to alter the correlation of military forces in the Western Pacific, and indeed in the world, so that it no longer moves rapidly and inevitably in China’s favor, which is what China cares about, the essence of its policy, its central proposition. Though with some effort the U.S. is perfectly capable of embarking upon this strategy, it has not. It seems we lack the awareness, political will, intelligence, probity, discipline, leadership, and habit of mind to do so.
America_in_Decline?  Asia_Pacific  balance_of_power  China  China_rising  geopolitics  hard_power  long-term  long-range  maritime  Mark_Helprin  North_Korea  nuclear  PACOM  political_geography  rivalries  South_China_Sea  strategic_geography  submarines  trade_wars  U.S.  U.S._Navy  USMC  U.S.-China_relations  Xi_Jinping  zero-sum_games 
march 2019 by jerryking
Canada must reassess its approach to China - if not, we may get steamrolled by the world’s new juggernaut - The Globe and Mail
JONATHAN MANTHORPE
CONTRIBUTED TO THE GLOBE AND MAIL
PUBLISHED JANUARY 30, 2019

.....The current CCP regime will not last forever. Dynasties never do, and the historical record in China is that they all die violently. This will likely happen to the CCP, but it’s not a good bet that it will happen anytime soon. Thus, Canada and all other countries having to engage with China while maintaining their own liberal-democratic institutions face some harsh realities. If Canada wishes to preserve its values and its standards of living based on trade in a world dominated by China, if it wishes to expand its influence as a global middle power, present and future governments in Ottawa need to prepare the ground. They need to cement political, economic social, and security ties within NATO and the G7, along with other like-minded countries. Canadian politicians need to assume a much tougher and more self-assured attitude toward Beijing than is now the case.
arbitrariness  authoritarianism  bullying  Canada  Canada-China_relations  China  Chinese_Communist_Party  Donald_Trump  dynasties  editorials  extradition  fascism  hostage_diplomacy  isolationism  Meng_Wanzhou  never_forever  rule_of_law  U.S.  Xi_Jinping 
january 2019 by jerryking
Opinion | Why the World Needs America and China to Get Along - The New York Times
By Robert E. Rubin
Mr. Rubin was secretary of the Treasury from 1995 to 1999 and is co-chairman emeritus of the Council on Foreign Relations.

Jan. 2, 2019

Leaders in both countries should recognize our imperative self-interest in working together on hugely consequential transnational issues, especially two threats to life on earth as we know it: nuclear weapons and climate change.

No single country can tackle these threats alone, and existing international institutions have proved inadequate. The best chance for successfully dealing with these overarching issues — as well as other transnational issues like pandemics, terrorism and cybersecurity — is for the world’s two largest national economies to catalyze global action.
China  climate_change  Donald_Trump  nuclear  Robert_Rubin  U.S.  U.S.-China_relations 
january 2019 by jerryking
After a Hiatus, China Accelerates Cyberspying Efforts to Obtain U.S. Technology - The New York Times
By David E. Sanger and Steven Lee Myers
Nov. 29, 2018

Three years ago, President Barack Obama struck a deal with China that few thought was possible: President Xi Jinping agreed to end his nation’s yearslong practice of breaking into the computer systems of American companies, military contractors and government agencies to obtain designs, technology and corporate secrets, usually on behalf of China’s state-owned firms.

The pact was celebrated by the Obama administration as one of the first arms-control agreements for cyberspace — and for 18 months or so, the number of Chinese attacks plummeted. But the victory was fleeting.

Soon after President Trump took office, China’s cyberespionage picked up again and, according to intelligence officials and analysts, accelerated in the last year as trade conflicts and other tensions began to poison relations between the world’s two largest economies.

The nature of China’s espionage has also changed. The hackers of the People’s Liberation Army — whose famed Unit 61398 tore through American companies until its operations from a base in Shanghai were exposed in 2013 — were forced to stand down, some of them indicted by the United States. But now, the officials and analysts say, they have begun to be replaced by stealthier operatives in the country’s intelligence agencies. The new operatives have intensified their focus on America’s commercial and industrial prowess, and on technologies that the Chinese believe can give them a military advantage.
China  cyberattacks  cyber_security  espionage  intellectual_property  international_trade  U.S.  David_Sanger  industrial_espionage  security_&_intelligence  intelligence_analysts 
november 2018 by jerryking
Why is America so bad at information wars?
JULY 18, 2018 | Financial Times | Gillian Tett.

In his new book Messing With the Enemy, Clint Watts, a former FBI agent, describes this exchange as the first “international-terrorist-versus-counter-terrorist Twitter battle”......One way to make sense of today’s extraordinary cyber battles with the Russians is to look at how jihadi groups developed such campaigns years earlier — not least because this oft-ignored parallel shows how the US government has done a poor job fighting its enemies in cyberspace. “America sucks at information warfare,” Watts laments. “Absolutely sucks.”.....US officials attempted to fight back against Isis’s social media campaigns. Watts reveals that in 2013 while at the FBI — and later as a security consultant — he engaged in a long Twitter duel with American-born terrorist Omar Hammami. Other US intelligence groups tried to develop psychological-operations campaigns to fight the extremists. Some of the experimental techniques used to profile social media users were later deployed in the ad-tech industry by companies such as Cambridge Analytica.

However, the US military was simply too bureaucratic, slow moving and rule-laden to match its enemies. And the country that seemed to learn the most from the social media extremists was Russia: Watts describes how he inadvertently witnessed Russian-backed groups populating American social media from the autumn of 2015 onwards, copying some of the tactics of the Islamists....Watts’s proposed remedy is just as startling: he believes that US government agencies are now so ill-equipped to fight in these type of social media wars that it is time for non-government groups to take the lead instead.....many leading figures in Silicon Valley furtively express similar views. Indeed, some appear to be quietly funding civilian “volunteers” to do exactly what Watts suggests: namely, hunt for ways to counter Russian attacks by infiltrating enemy cyber groups.

Who knows whether this type of grass-roots action will work, or how widespread it might be — everything is deeply murky in the arena of cyberspace and information wars.
Gillian_Tett  information_warfare  U.S.  security_&_intelligence  Twitter  al-Shabab  books  cyber_warfare  Russians  hackers  Russia  disinformation  persuasion  trolls  politics  delegitimization  destabilization  deception  infiltration 
july 2018 by jerryking
Globalised business is a US security issue | Financial Times
Rana Foroohar YESTERDAY

there is a much broader group of people in both the public and the private sector who would like to reverse the economic integration of China and the US for strategic reasons..... a two-day event sponsored late last month by the National Defense University, which brings together military and civilian leaders to discuss the big challenges of the day. Dozens of experts, government officials, and business leaders gathered to talk about the decline in the post-second world war order, the rise of China, and how the US could strengthen its manufacturing and defence industries. The goal would be to create resilient supply chains that could withstand not just a trade war, but an actual war......“If you accept as your starting point that we are in a great power struggle [with China and Russia], then you have to think about securing the innovation base, making viable the industrial base, and scaling it all,”....Included on the event’s reading list was Freedom’s Forge, which outlines the role that US business — notably carmakers — played in gearing up the US for war in the early 1940s. At that time, because of the depth and breadth of the auto industry’s manufacturing and logistical might, the sector was viewed as being just as important to national security as steel and aluminium.

That is not to say the US security community is pro-tariffs or trade war .... But there is a growing group of thoughtful people who believe that American national security interests will require a forcible untangling of the investment and supply chain links between the US and China. They point to high-tech areas like artificial intelligence, robotics, autonomous vehicles, virtual reality, financial technology and biotech as important not only to the military but also for private sector growth.....While America’s military is still figuring out how make sure its supply chains are not controlled by strategic adversaries, the Chinese have played a much more sophisticated long game. The difference can be summed up in two words: industrial policy. China has one. The US doesn’t. The US has always steered away from a formal policy because critics see it as the government “picking winners”. But the Chinese don’t so much pick winners as use a co-ordinated approach to harnessing the technologies they need. They do it not only through investments and acquisitions but also through forced joint ventures, industrial espionage, and cybertheft [jk: predatory practices].....many multinationals were shortening their supply chains even before the current trade conflicts.

It is a trend that will probably speed up. Multinational companies, much more than domestically focused ones, will suffer collateral damage from tariffs. They will also be a major target of Chinese backlash. Anecdotally, this is already leading some groups to shift production from China to other countries, like Vietnam. If the military-industrial complex in the US has its way, those supply chains might move even closer to home.
automotive_industry  books  China  economic_integration  industrial_policies  military-industrial_complex  multinationals  predatory_practices  Rana_Foroohar  WWII  security_&_intelligence  China_rising  supply_chains  trade_wars  U.S.  U.S.-China_relations  collateral_damage  cybertheft  industrial_espionage  anecdotal 
july 2018 by jerryking
The AI arms race: the tech fear behind Donald Trump’s trade war with China | Financial Times
Shawn Donnan in Washington YESTERDAY

While the headlines about the Trump administration’s trade war with Beijing often focus on raw materials such as steel, aluminium and soyabeans, the underlying motivation of the new protectionist mood is American anxiety about China’s rapidly growing technological prowess.......
At a time when the US is engaged in a battle for technological pre-eminence with China, the ZGC project is exactly the sort of state-backed Chinese investment that American politicians across the political spectrum view with scepticism.

“China has targeted America’s industries of the future, and President Donald Trump understands better than anyone that if China successfully captures these emerging industries, America will have no economic future,” .....US tariffs on $34bn in imports from China that are due to take effect on Friday as part of a squeeze intended to end what the US says has been years of state-endorsed Chinese intellectual property theft. But it is also part of a broader battle against what the White House has labelled China’s “economic aggression”......Viewed from America, President Xi Jinping’s Made in China 2025 industrial strategy is a state-led effort to establish Chinese leadership in the technologies of the next generation of commerce and military equipment — notably AI, robotics and gene editing.

Many US officials are now questioning one of the basic assumptions about how the American economy operates: its openness to foreign investment....While some technology executives extol the potential for co-operation in areas such as AI, the Washington establishment increasingly sees them as central to a growing geopolitical competition....Many Chinese investors are looking for US companies that they can help move into China. .....Even though Mr Trump’s focus on Chinese technology has strong bipartisan support in Washington, its tactics have been heavily criticised. The biggest blunder, many critics argue, has been the Trump administration’s willingness to wage concurrent trade wars. The IP-driven tariffs push against China has been accompanied by one that has hit allies such as Canada and the EU that might have joined a fight against Beijing.

........“We’re treating the Chinese better than we are treating our friends,” says Derek Scissors, a China expert at the conservative American Enterprise Institute, who sees the tariffs Mr Trump is threatening against European car imports as a similar bit of malpractice.
arms_race  artificial_intelligence  China  CFIUS  Donald_Trump  economic_warfare  economic_aggression  FDI  geopolitics  international_trade  investors  investing  intellectual_property  industrial_policies  protectionism  politicians  robotics  One_Belt_One_Road  security_&_intelligence  Silicon_Valley  SOEs  start_ups  theft  U.S.  venture_capital  Washington_D.C. 
july 2018 by jerryking
US and China must find ways to control their elites | Financial Times
July 1, 2018 | FT| Rana Foroohar. Pinboard saved article/artifact #25,000

Success rests on heading off popular unrest, rather than winning trade fights.
++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
Tension between the US and China is driving much of what is happening in the markets today. The analysis has focused on tariffs, currency manipulation, strategic technologies and which country has the most to win or lose in a trade war.

But there is a more important question to be asked when thinking about the future success and stability of each nation: which country will be better able to control its moneyed elites?

In his 1982 work The Rise and Decline of Nations, the economist Mancur Olson argues that civilisations tend to decline when the moneyed interests take over politics. That has clearly happened in both countries, where the levels of wealth inequality are not dissimilar; the top 1 per cent in China own about 30 per cent of the economy; in the US, the figure is 42 per cent.

........Chinese leaders also believe that America’s inability to curb its own elites will be the country’s downfall [Achilles’ heel]....America’s elite business class has, for decades now, sought to distract from rising oligopoly with hypocrisy. US companies complain vociferously about unfair Chinese trade practices and intellectual property theft.
U.S.  China  elitism  Rana_Foroohar  societal_collapse  the_One_Percent  self-interest  books  economists  Mancur_Olson  entrenched_interests  Achilles’_heel  Xi_Jinping  corruption  Chinese_Communist_Party  conflicts  confrontations  U.S.-China_relations 
july 2018 by jerryking
How does Chinese tech stack up against American tech?
Feb 15th 2018 | Economist | Schumpeter.

The Chinese venture-capital (VC) industry is booming. American visitors return from Beijing, Hangzhou and Shenzhen blown away by the entrepreneurial work ethic. Last year the government decreed that China would lead globally in artificial intelligence (AI) by 2030. The plan covers a startlingly vast range of activities, including developing smart cities and autonomous cars and setting global tech standards. Like Japanese industry in the 1960s, private Chinese firms take this “administrative guidance” seriously.

Being a global tech hegemon has been lucrative for America. Tech firms support 7m jobs at home that pay twice the average wage. Other industries benefit by using technology more actively and becoming more productive: American non-tech firms are 50% more “digitised” than European ones, says McKinsey, a consulting firm. America sets many standards, for example on the design of USB ports, or rules for content online, that the world follows. And the $180bn of foreign profits that American tech firms mint annually is a boon several times greater than the benefit of having the world’s reserve currency.

A loss of these spoils would be costly and demoralising. Is it likely? Schumpeter has compiled ten measures of tech supremacy. The approach owes much to Kai-Fu Lee of Sinovation Ventures, a Chinese VC firm. It uses figures from AllianceBernstein, Bloomberg, CB Insights, Goldman Sachs and McKinsey and includes 3,000 listed, global tech firms, 226 “unicorns”, or unlisted firms worth over $1bn, plus Huawei, a Chinese hardware giant.

The overall conclusion is that China is still behind. Using the median of the yardsticks, its tech industry is 42% as powerful as America’s. But it is catching up fast. In 2012 the figure was just 15%.......For Silicon Valley, it is time to get paranoid. Viewed from China, many of its big firms have become comfy monopolists. In the old days all American tech executives had to do to see the world’s cutting edge was to walk out the door. Now they must fly to China, too.
China  China_rising  U.S.  Silicon_Valley  Alibaba  Tencent  metrics  standards  America_in_Decline?  work_ethic  complacency  Kai-Fu_Lee 
april 2018 by jerryking
America v China: How trade wars become real wars
March 11, 2017 | FT | by Gideon Rachman 2 HOURS AGO

Successive American presidents also believed that capitalism would act as a Trojan Horse — undermining one-party rule within China. As former US president George W Bush once said: “Trade freely with China, and time is on our side.” The American establishment believed that a more liberal China would be less likely to challenge the US on the international stage. One of the central tenets of liberal internationalism is that democracies do not wage war with each other.

But political developments in Xi’s China have refuted the expectations of the liberal internationalist worldview that shaped successive American presidencies. China has not become more democratic. Nor is it any longer willing to live quietly within a US-designed and dominated world order.
protectionism  U.S.  Donald_Trump  Xi_Jinping  U.S.-China_relations  trade_wars  free-trade  geopolitics  warfare  international_trade  China_rising 
march 2018 by jerryking
China Could Sell Trump the Brooklyn Bridge - The New York Times
Thomas L. Friedman NOV. 14, 2017

The saying — “When you don’t know where you’re going, any road will get you there” — and it perfectly sums up the contrast between China’s President Xi Jinping and President Trump.....All along, Xi keeps his eye on the long-term prize of making China great again. Trump, meanwhile, touts every minor victory as historic and proceeds down any road that will give him a quick sugar high.

Trump literally has no idea what he’s doing and has no integrated strategy — because, unlike Xi, Trump’s given no thought to the big questions every effective leader starts his day with: “What world am I living in? What are the biggest trends in this world? And how do I align my country so more of my citizens get the most out of these trends and cushion the worst?”

What world are we in? One in which we’re going through three “climate changes” at once.
(1) Destructive weather events and the degradation of ecosystems are steadily accelerating.
(2) globalization: from an interconnected world to an interdependent one; from a world of walls, where you build your wealth by hoarding resources, to a world of webs, where you thrive by connecting your citizens to the most flows of ideas, trade, innovation and education.
(3) technology and work: Machines are acquiring all five senses, and with big data and artificial intelligence, every company can now analyze, optimize, prophesize, customize, digitize and automatize more and more jobs, products and services. And those companies that don’t will wither.
Tom_Friedman  China  U.S.  Donald_Trump  globalization  technology  climate_change  TPP  international_trade  questions  think_threes  wealth_creation  grand_strategy  foundational  existential  extreme_weather_events 
november 2017 by jerryking
Why Putin would be behind the DNC computer hacking - The Globe and Mail
PATRICK MARTIN
The Globe and Mail
Published Saturday, Jul. 30, 2016

U.S. security experts have concluded with near certainty that it was two groups of hackers known in the cyberworld as Fancy Bear and Cozy Bear that penetrated the computer network of the Democratic National Committee several months ago and copied thousands of e-mails and other documents. These hackers, they say, can be traced to two of Russia’s security services: the GRU, run by Russia’s military, and the FSB, the main successor to the notorious KGB.

These operations would not have been conducted without the knowledge of Russian President Vladimir Putin, the one-time head of the FSB.

Such espionage is not totally unexpected, says David Kramer of Washington’s McCain Institute, a security-oriented “do tank” (as opposed to think tank). However, “weaponizing” the operation by releasing many of the documents through the whistle-blower website WikiLeaks, is “unprecedented,” he said.
Russia  U.S.  Donald_Trump  Hillary_Clinton  information_warfare  Vladimir_Putin  Campaign_2016  Patrick_Martin  hacking  data_breaches  cyber_security  hackers  WikiLeaks  security_&_intelligence  FSB  GRU  DNC  espionage 
july 2016 by jerryking
Dear Americans: Welcome to Canada - The Globe and Mail
IRVIN STUDIN
Special to The Globe and Mail
Published Monday, May 09, 2016
Campaign_2016  Donald_Trump  crossborder  opportunistic  immigrants  U.S. 
may 2016 by jerryking
Islands of ill dispute – between China and Japan - The Globe and Mail
Nov. 27 2013 | The Globe and Mail |editorial.

The United States is right to have ignored China’s declaration of an air-defence zone over a group of disputed islands in the East China Sea. The islands themselves – tiny, uninhabited lumps of land – are insignificant. But China’s declaration of a kind of airborne sovereignty over them amounts to a unilateral and unacceptable escalation of a low-level conflict. It raises tensions between China and Japan, and threatens to destabilize the entire region, since China has similar, ongoing disputes with Vietnam, the Philippines and other maritime neighbours.
China  Japan  U.S.  conflicts  editorials  South_China_Sea  maritime  sovereignty  Asia_Pacific  disputes  provocations 
december 2013 by jerryking
A Russian GPS Using U.S. Soil Stirs Spy Fears - NYTimes.com
By MICHAEL S. SCHMIDT and ERIC SCHMITT
Published: November 16, 2013
U.S.  GPS  Russia  espionage  CIA  space  satellites 
november 2013 by jerryking
Why the U.S. is the player with all the right cards | Business without Borders
June 6th, 2013 | Business Without Borders | by Susan Bourette.

(1) Similarly, harnessing the promise of “big data” could yield productivity gains across many sectors. The United States is uniquely positioned to capture the opportunity given that it has led technological development and owns a disproportionate share of the world’s data assets, the report states.

To put this into perspective, McKinsey has analyzed big data’s potential in four large and markedly different sectors: retail, manufacturing, health care and government services. “In these sample sectors alone, we estimate that the widespread use of big data analytics could produce up to $635 billion in productivity gains and cost savings, resulting in an incremental increase of at least $265 billion in annual GDP by 2020,” the report says.

(2)Canada has a unique opportunity to capitalize on its reputation as a global food superpower, Mr. Barton says, giving a much-needed boost to the industry, which has seen its ranking fall to the seventh-largest global producer from third in recent years.
McKinsey  opportunities  U.S.  Dominic_Barton  cost_savings  productivity  Rhodes  agribusiness  massive_data_sets  food 
june 2013 by jerryking
An Elizabethan Cyberwar - NYTimes.com
May 31, 2013 | NYT | By JORDAN CHANDLER HIRSCH and SAM ADELSBERG.

Instead of trying to beat back the New World instability of the Internet with an old playbook, American officials should embrace it. With the conflict placed in its proper perspective, policy makers could ratchet down the rhetoric and experiment with a new range of responses that go beyond condemnation but stop short of all-out cyberwar — giving them the room to maneuver without approaching cyberconflict as a path to Defcon 1.

In these legally uncharted waters, only Elizabethan guile, not cold war brinkmanship, will steer Washington through the storm.
cunning  cyber_warfare  China  China_rising  U.S.  security_&_intelligence  guile  lessons_learned  contextual  Elizabethan  cyber_security  instability  resilience  perspectives  tools  frenemies  espionage  risk-mitigation  policy_tools  cyberweapons  U.S.-China_relations  policymakers  policymaking  playbooks 
june 2013 by jerryking
In the Bag
September 2012 | Progressive Grocer | by Jennifer Strailey.

According to Mintel's 2012 Fruit and Vegetables report, packaged salad mixes are the biggest seller in fresh vegetables, representing a 14.8 percent dollar share of a $45 billion U.S. market. Chicago-based Mintel further notes that 59 percent of consumers say they eat salads as meals for dinner or lunch at least once a week.
salads  U.S.  statistics  fresh_produce  supermarkets  grocery  market_sizing  lunchtime 
april 2013 by jerryking
America the Innovative? - NYTimes.com
March 30, 2013 | NYT | By EAMONN FINGLETON.

How do we explain America’s sudden mid-20th-century ascent to technological glory? The credit goes not to freedom but to something more prosaic: money. With World War II, the United States government joined corporations in ramping up spending on R&D, and then came the cold war and the Soviets’ launch of Sputnik in 1957, which gave further impetus to government-funded research. One result was Darpa, which helped develop the Internet.

Throughout history, rich nations have gotten to the future first. Their companies can afford to equip their tinkerers and visionaries with the most advanced materials, instruments and knowledge.

This raises an epochal question: as China becomes richer, is it destined to pass the United States as the world’s most inventive nation? The question is all the more pertinent because many experts contend that America’s inventive spirit is already flagging. As the Silicon Valley venture capitalist Peter Thiel put it to me in an interview, American innovation in recent decades has been remarkably narrowly based. “It has been confined largely to information technology and financial services,” he said. “By contrast in transportation, for instance, we are hardly more advanced today than we were 40 years ago. The story is similar in treating cancer.”
China  U.S.  competitiveness_of_nations  innovation  creativity  China_rising  patents  DARPA  Cold_War  America_in_Decline?  post-WWII  Peter_Thiel  inventiveness  visionaries  abundance  state-as-facilitator  tinkerers 
april 2013 by jerryking
Trends in the Marketing of Fresh Produce and Fresh-cut Products
September 2008 | | by DR. ROBERTA COOK,Dept. of Ag and Resource Economics, University of California Davis
fresh_produce  trends  private_labels  foodservice  statistics  Roberta_Cook  food  supermarkets  grocery  fruits  vegetables  U.S.  barriers_to_adoption  surveys  slides 
february 2013 by jerryking
Palm Oil in Flux on Strong Demand
March 21, 2005 | Chemical Market Reporter | Doris de Guzman
palm_oil  Malaysia  China  U.S.  food 
december 2012 by jerryking
‘America is still in denial about energy’ - FT.com
July 25, 2005 8:33 pm
‘America is still in denial about energy’

By Christopher Swann
U.S.  energy 
june 2012 by jerryking
The causes: The roots of hatred
September 20th, 2001| The Economist

America defends its interests, sometimes skilfully, sometimes clumsily, just as other countries do. Since power, like nature, abhors a vacuum, it steps into places where disorder reigns. On the whole, it should do so more, not less, often. Of all the great powers in history, it is probably the least territorial, the most idealistic. Muslims in particular should note that the armed interventions in Bosnia and Kosovo, both led by America, were attacks on Christian regimes in support of Muslim victims. In neither did the United States stand to make any material gain; in neither were its vital interests, conventionally defined, at stake. Those who criticise America's leadership of the world's capitalist system—a far from perfect affair—should remember that it has brought more wealth and better living standards to more people than any other in history. And those who regret America's triumph in the cold war should stop to think how the world would look if the Soviet Union had won. America's policies may have earned it enemies. But in truth, it is difficult to find plausible explanations for the virulence of last week's attacks, except in the envy, hatred and moral confusion of those who plotted and perpetrated them.
cold_war  root_cause  anti-Americanism  disorder  international_system  national_interests  superpowers  leadership  U.S.  virulence 
june 2012 by jerryking
Resource-Rich Canada Looks to China for Growth - WSJ.com
May 13, 2012, 10:25 p.m. ET

Resource-Rich Canada Looks to China for Growth
By CHIP CUMMINS and ALISTAIR MACDONALD
Canada  China  U.S.  diversification 
may 2012 by jerryking
Why Nations Fail - NYTimes.com
By THOMAS L. FRIEDMAN
Published: March 31, 2012

“Why Nations Fail.” The more you read it, the more you appreciate what a fool’s errand we’re on in Afghanistan and how much we need to totally revamp our whole foreign aid strategy. But most intriguing are the warning flares the authors put up about both America and China.

Co-authored by the M.I.T. economist Daron Acemoglu and the Harvard political scientist James A. Robinson, “Why Nations Fail” argues that the key differentiator between countries is “institutions.” Nations thrive when they develop “inclusive” political and economic institutions, and they fail when those institutions become “extractive” and concentrate power and opportunity in the hands of only a few.
book_reviews  Tom_Friedman  China  U.S.  Afghanistan  Non-Integrating_Gap  Egypt  foreign_policy  institutions  foreign_aid  failed_states  institutional_integrity 
april 2012 by jerryking
Will Israel Attack Iran? - NYTimes.com
By RONEN BERGMAN
Published: January 25, 2012
Israel  Iran  U.S. 
january 2012 by jerryking
John Bolton: 'The Great Successor' - WSJ.com
DECEMBER 20, 2011
'The Great Successor'
There's no guarantee that the North Korean military will accept another hereditary ruler.

By JOHN BOLTON
John_Bolton  North_Korea  U.S.  succession  dynasties  op-eds  Kim_Jong_Il  deaths  dictatorships  Kim_Jong_Eun 
december 2011 by jerryking
In Kim Jong-il Death, an Extensive Intelligence Failure - NYTimes.com
By MARK LANDLER and CHOE SANG-HUN
Published: December 19, 2011

“We have clear plans about what to do if North Korea attacks, but not if the North Korean regime unravels,” said Michael J. Green, a former Asia adviser in the Bush administration. “Every time you do these scenarios, one of the first objectives is trying to find out what’s going on inside North Korea.”

In many countries, that would involve intercepting phone calls between government officials or peering down from spy satellites. And indeed, American spy planes and satellites scan the country. Highly sensitive antennas along the border between South and North Korea pick up electronic signals. South Korean intelligence officials interview thousands of North Koreans who defect to the South each year.

And yet remarkably little is known about the inner workings of the North Korean government. Pyongyang, officials said, keeps sensitive information limited to a small circle of officials, who do not talk.
security_&_intelligence  failure  North_Korea  South_Korea  U.S.  SIGINT  scenario-planning  contingency_planning  eavesdropping 
december 2011 by jerryking
FT.com / UK - US business frets over China's Africa expansion
By Alec Russell in Cape Town

Published: November 20 2007
U.S.  China  Africa 
july 2011 by jerryking
U.S. Aims to Gain New Edge in Africa
June 11, 2011 | WSJ | By PETER WONACOTT. U.S. officials and
business leaders gathered in Zambia for a bout of soul-searching on how
to lift trade and investment in Africa, underlining a broad recognition
that U.S. companies are trailing those from China & India in tapping
the continent's economic opportunities....Many participants say the
U.S. needs a new approach to a continent that is projected to grow
faster than any other global region over the next 5 yrs...Yet the
continent remains burdened by political corruption & poor
infrastructure—problems that ratchet up the price of goods, particularly
in many landlocked countries. ...Companies from China, India &
Brazil generally have been less daunted by such challenges. Bharti
Airtel., India's largest cellco, now operates in 16 African countries,
part of a dramatic expansion of Indian investment in Africa. This month,
Bharti said it signed a deal with China's Huawei Technologies Co. to
help manage and modernize its network in Africa.
U.S.  Hillary_Clinton  Bharti  India  Huawei  Africa  china 
july 2011 by jerryking
U.S. Aims to Gain New Edge in Africa - WSJ.com
June 11, 2011 | WSJ | By PETER WONACOTT. U.S. officials and
business leaders gathered in Zambia for a bout of soul-searching on how
to lift trade and investment in Africa, underlining a broad recognition
that U.S. companies are trailing those from China & India in tapping
the continent's economic opportunities....Many participants say the
U.S. needs a new approach to a continent that is projected to grow
faster than any other global region over the next 5 yrs...Yet the
continent remains burdened by political corruption & poor
infrastructure—problems that ratchet up the price of goods, particularly
in many landlocked countries. ...Companies from China, India &
Brazil generally have been less daunted by such challenges. Bharti
Airtel., India's largest cellco, now operates in 16 African countries,
part of a dramatic expansion of Indian investment in Africa. This month,
Bharti said it signed a deal with China's Huawei Technologies Co. to
help manage and modernize its network in Africa.
Africa  U.S.  Hillary_Clinton  Bharti  India  Huawei 
june 2011 by jerryking
U.S. Companies Race to Catch Up in African Markets - WSJ.com
JUNE 6, 2011 | WSJ | By JAMES R. HAGERTY And WILL CONNORS.
US. companies' game of catch-up shows the perils of waking up late to
the next big frontier market, Africa. The continent's economy is
forecast to grow to $2.6 trillion in 2020 from $1.6 trillion in 2008,
fueled by booms in mining, agriculture and development of ports, roads
and other infrastructure, according to McKinsey Global Institute. The
middle class is growing, and total household spending now exceeds that
of India.
Cummins  Africa  China  U.S.  frontier_markets  GE  Google  ADM  Wal-Mart  Harley-Davidson  Caterpillar 
june 2011 by jerryking
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