25 July 2017   1 comment

There are reports that China is building up its military defenses along its border with North Korea.  There is no reason to believe that China wishes to use military force against North Korea so a possible alternative explanation is that China fears a collapse of the North Korean regime which could unleash a flood of refugees into China.  The move suggests that China fears US action against North Korea, either in terms of a military attack against the nuclear sites in North Korea or a possible attempt to change the regime through an assassination attempt against Kim Jong-un.  There is no evidence that indicates that the US is planning either policy although the US military build-up in the Western Pacific is certainly intimidating (three aircraft carrier groups).

Congressman Lamar Smith (R-TX) has written on op-ed on climate change for The Daily Signal, a publication issued by the Heritage Foundation.  Rep. Smith argues that there are benefits to global warming, including increased photosynthesis which would foster greater plant growth.  Additionally, he argues:

“Also, as the Earth warms, we are seeing beneficial changes to the earth’s geography. For instance, Arctic sea ice is decreasing. This development will create new commercial shipping lanes that provide faster, more convenient, and less costly routes between ports in Asia, Europe, and eastern North America. This will increase international trade and strengthen the world economy.”

What is most interesting about the op-ed is that Rep. Smith is not denying that global warming is occurring.  Chris D’Angelo has written a critique of Rep. Smith’s op-ed for Mother Jones

Effects of a Global Temperature Increase of 4ºC

One of the more perplexing characteristics of the US economy is the profound decline in employment in the manufacturing sector over the last 30 years despite a dramatic increase in the value of manufactures in the same time period.  What is also interesting is that while most Americans are well aware of the decline in manufacturing employment, very few Americans are aware of the fact that the US continues to be one of the leading manufacturing countries in the world.  There are two reasons for this unawareness.  First, the share of manufacturing in the US GDP has unquestionably gone down, despite the increase in value.  The increase in the value of services, particularly in the financial sector, has been substantially greater.  Second, much manufacturing is now being done by robots–fewer workers are necessary to produce the same products.  The labor component of manufacturing will undoubtedly continue to decline in the future, not only in the US but in other countries as well.

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Posted July 25, 2017 by vferraro1971 in World Politics

One response to “25 July 2017

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  1. Pingback: 28 July 2017 | World Politics News

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