After months of large-scale protests in Hong Kong, the city's future as a bridge between mainland China and the outside world is in serious jeopardy. Fortunately, all sides share an interest in pursuing more inclusive growth within the "one country, two systems" framework that has been critical to Hong Kong's success.
Conventional wisdom holds that the outcome of presidential elections turns on the state of the economy. Thus far, notwithstanding some conspicuous ups and downs, the Trump administration should reap the benefits of a positive economic performance. Nonetheless, a faction of observers thinks a major recession is in the wings. Its expected arrival date is next year, just in time to wreak havoc in the 2020 election.
Of all the impeachment speculation and far-out statements made over the past week, the most quizzical may be this: former Arizona Sen. Jeff Flake’s assertion that “at least 35” Republican senators who would like to oust President Trump.
Speaking at the United Nations, 16-year-old Swedish activist Greta Thunberg said that if humanity really understands the science of climate change and still fails to act, we’re “evil.” This is because climate change means “people are dying.” Helpfully, she also told us what we must do to act correctly: In a bit more than eight years, we will have exhausted our remaining allowance for carbon emissions, so we must shut down everything running on fossil fuels by 2028.
Physicist Sabine Hossenfelder talks about her book Lost in Math with EconTalk host Russ Roberts. Hossenfelder argues that the latest theories in physics have failed to find empirical confirmation. Particles that were predicted to be discovered by the mathematics have failed to show up. Whether or not there is a multiverse has no observable consequences. Hossenfelder argues that physicists have become overly enamored with the elegance and aesthetics of their theories and that using beauty to evaluate a model is unscientific. The conversation includes a discussion of similar challenges in economics.
Carlos X. Lastra-Anadón, a postdoctoral research fellow at Stanford University and an Assistant Professor at IE University in Madrid, joins Paul E. Peterson to discuss their co-authored paper, “Who Benefits from Local Financing of Public Services? A Causal Analysis.”
In the 1930s, the British military pundit B. H. Liddell Hart argued vociferously that traditional British conduct of war in the seventeenth and eighteenth had represented a strategy of minimal commitment to the wars on the European Continent while focusing on a blue-water strategy to attack the enemy on the periphery. Thus, Britain’s effort in the First World War with its emphasis on the British Expeditionary Force in France had been a terrible mistake. He could not have been more mistaken.
Lenin did more than anyone else to shape the last hundred years. He invented a form of government we have come to call totalitarian, which rejected in principle the idea of any private sphere outside of state control. To establish this power, he invented the one-party state, a term that would previously have seemed self-contradictory since a party was, by definition, a part. An admirer of the French Jacobins, Lenin believed that state power had to be based on sheer terror, and so he also created the terrorist state.
Former U.S. defense secretary James Mattis says the whistleblower complaint threatening U.S. President Donald Trump with impeachment is the "normal heave and ho of democracies." "Democracies go through raucous periods and you see some of that going on right now — and by the way, you see it going on in Germany and France and the United Kingdom especially, and certainly very much so here in Washington, D.C., right now," said Mattis, who served as Trump's secretary of defense from January 2017 to December 2018, but resigned over a series of policy disagreements with the president.
Sometime shortly after 2 p.m. on July 30, 1975, Jimmy Hoffa vanished. The once-formidable labor movement pit bull — who had cozied up to the Mafia in his rise to power, traded televised Punch-and-Judy blows with an ambitious young attorney general named Bobby Kennedy and single-handedly built the International Brotherhood of Teamsters into one of the most politically influential unions in America — was last spotted outside the Machus Red Fox restaurant in the Detroit suburbs. He would never be seen again, dead or alive. He was 62 years old.
Nations around the world have addressed problems of poverty—malnutrition, poor health care, inadequate education—with “conditional cash transfer” programs (CCTs). These programs provide small cash stipends to participants who engage in specified behaviors—like buying healthy foods, attending maternal health clinics, or sending children to school. They’ve been widely adopted, from Brazil to Indonesia. Even New York City has a CCT.
As impeachment fever grips Washington, the long-ranging and damaging foreign policy implications of the release of a memo summarizing President Donald Trump’s phone call with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky were largely overlooked.
The first death potentially linked to vaping was reported Aug. 23. A month later, the number of deaths grew to nine. That’s nine fatalities out of the estimated 14 million Americans who report using e-cigarettes. Over the same amount of time, an estimated 7,333 people died from alcohol related incidents, 5,850 from prescription drug overdoses and 25 from falling off of a ladder, according to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention’s latest yearly statistics.
Three conversations. And three warnings. Cautionary tales. Or so they seemed to me. There may be rough seas ahead. The first conversation was with a veteran public servant. Holding public meetings is like breathing to him. But he doesn’t want to do them anymore. He feels like he is facing a mob each time he holds one. People emote. They rail. “They just yell,” he said. “No one wants to hear me or converse.”
You are the Big Kahuna. The Boss, the One in Charge, maker of decisions and teller of things to do. You’re the Big Cheese with all the responsibility, and you ain’t bad at it. So how would you do if, as in the novel “The Tubman Command” by Elizabeth Cobbs, the very lives of soldiers, women and children were in your hands?
This isn’t the outcome President Trump anticipated, now 15 months into his trade war with China. Chinese President Xi Jinping this Tuesday will stage the mother of all military parades through central Beijing, celebrating not only the 70th anniversary of the People’s Republic — but also underscoring his quest for “national rejuvenation” and global leadership.
Even before House Speaker Nancy Pelosi pulled the trigger on an investigation into President Donald Trump’s dealings with Ukraine, there were fears and complaints that impeachment proceedings would dangerously compromise U.S. foreign policy. Beyond just stifling the president’s communications with foreign leaders, wrote former Justice Department official John Yoo, Congress “would seize the upper hand in foreign affairs, which has produced disasters.”
US law protects whistleblowers in the intelligence community, like the person who filed a complaint about US President Donald Trump’s dealing with Ukraine’s leader, but the confidential nature of the information they handle presents additional hurdles.
The world’s central banks face unprecedented challenges in the 21st century. With balances sheets expanded by more than US$10 trillion and seemingly stuck in a low interest rate quagmire, central banks are increasingly strained in dealing with low inflation and economic uncertainty. This event will discuss what Allan Meltzer, the late renowned monetary theorist and historian, might have made of current monetary policy developments.
Two decades ago, Chief Justice William Rehnquist captured unprecedented attention as he presided over the Senate trial of a president, a role that would fall to Chief Justice John Roberts if the US House were to impeach President Donald Trump and a Senate trial were launched.