Trump threatens to impose an additional tariff on $200 billion in Chinese goods | Vox


Trump insists trade wars are “easy to win” because the US has a significant trade deficit with China.

Last year China imported $130 billion in goods from the US, while the US purchased about $500 billion in items from China. Put together, this means that Trump could impose additional tariffs on Chinese imports, but China might not be able to match this with import taxes on US goods that would be of the same magnitude.

Source: Trump threatens to impose an additional tariff on $200 billion in Chinese goods – Vox

Time to treat the root causes of migration, not only the symptoms | EURACTIV.com

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While European countries are distracted by what to do when migrants arrive, I ask why more emphasis is not being placed on stemming migration at the root cause.

Sub-Saharan African nations account for eight of the 10 fastest growing international migrant populations since 2010. Conflict is of course the biggest driver of this phenomenon, but as French President Macron rightfully recognized on a recent trip to Nigeria, poverty and unemployment are playing an increasing role in uprooting people from their homes.

He commented that more Africans need to succeed in Africa. So how can this be done?

Source: Time to treat the root causes of migration, not only the symptoms – EURACTIV.com

Europe’s shameful anniversary | EURACTIV.com

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On a scorching July day in Srebrenica, eastern Bosnia, a battalion of lightly armed Dutch UN peacekeepers, operating on a vague and restrictive mandate, stepped aside and allowed Bosnian Serbs to commit what is commonly referred to as the biggest atrocity in Europe since World War II.

In the ensuing days, the Serbs killed around 8,000 Muslim men and boys and bulldozed their bodies into mass graves.

The writer of this Brief happened to be one of the first reporters to talk to Srebrenica survivors.

The United Nations and the US bore their share of the blame, but it was primarily Brussels, and the inefficient and overcautious EU bureaucracy, that could not handle the disaster unfolding in its own backyard.

Source: The Brief – Europe’s shameful anniversary – EURACTIV.com

What Can Dockless Bikes Tell Us About Cities?


In San Diego, however, as in many cities, DSBs’ (dockless shared bikes) sudden appearance on city sidewalks has led to pushback from unhappy residents. Dockless bikes have been haphazardly parked and clumped in odd spots around the city (including crosswalks and private yards), leading to nuisance complaints.

In retaliation, vandals have destroyed DSBs or stranded them in inconvenient places, such as bodies of water. In the Coronado and Little Italy neighborhoods, two popular San Diego tourist destinations, city officials have outright banned DSBs, citing safety concerns.

In the nearby resort city of Coronado, officials have begun impounding DSBs and fining the companies for uncollected bikes.

Source: What Can Dockless Bikes Tell Us About Cities?

The Environmental Stakes of Brett Kavanaugh’s Supreme Court Nomination


“Judge Kavanaugh isn’t anti-environmental, but he tends to be anti-agency,” Michael Gerrard told Inside Climate News. Gerrard is the director of the Sabin Center for Climate Change Law at Columbia University.

“He’s often struck down regulation that he didn’t think Congress had authorized explicitly enough.”

Source: The Environmental Stakes of Brett Kavanaugh’s Supreme Court Nomination

Waging cyber war without a rulebook | FCW


The U.S. government is currently engaged in disputes with at least four other countries — Iran, North Korea, Russia and China — over a series of recent hacks, intrusions and cyberattacks dating back five years.

In cases like Iran and North Korea, some worry the situation is potentially one precipitating incident away from breaking out into military conflict.

The federal government lacks a commonly understood framework for the type and scope of actions that would or would not qualify as an act of war in cyberspace.

Source: Waging cyber war without a rulebook — FCW

The Last Chapter Of The Macedonian Question? | Social Europe

To many observers it just seemed bizarre: why couldn’t Macedonians be called what they wanted?

Even choosing the terms to discuss a conflict about a name was confusing. This was never exactly a dispute between Macedonians and Greeks. It is about different kinds of Macedonians who disagree about what to call each other. The agreement spells this out.

There are at least two meanings of Macedonia, depending on which side of the border you come from. For the first time in international law, it is not the borders of a territory but its cultural meaning that is determined. The outcome was laissez fare, to each his own. “Macedonia” and “Macedonian” will mean something different to people north and south of this border.

How did this dual reality come to be?

Source: The Last Chapter Of The Macedonian Question? • Social Europe

Redefining NATO Security Investment: Moving Beyond 2 Percent | War on the Rocks


Rather than focusing on inputs such as percentage of GDP spent on defense, NATO should find a way to communicate more effectively the direct output of allies’ security investments. No single measure is likely to suffice.

Instead, the alliance should develop a suite of evaluative measures and a simplified framework for public discussion. Even with several measures, the emphasis should unequivocally be on measuring ready force capability and investments that the alliance needs.

NATO largely brought the 2 percent emphasis on itself.

Source: Redefining NATO Security Investment: Moving Beyond 2 Percent – War on the Rocks

Why It’s a Problem That John Locke Didn’t Understand Extinction


Welcome to the Anthropocene.

This greeting is belated, of course. We have all been here the whole
of our lives, without knowing it for most of our days.

The Anthropocene is a span of geological and evolutionary time (technically, an epoch) during which humans have had an outsized role in transforming the natural world, most of that time without knowledge and awareness of the consequences of their actions. Those who use the term argue about when the epoch begins.

Does it start with the Industrial Revolution, late in the 18th century, hastening around 1850? Or does it make sense to push the date back in time to the first appearances of agriculture in scattered populations, as much as 10,000 years before the present, or even earlier?

It matters more to scientists and scholars than it does to you, whenever you step out into your dooryard (a patch of the outdoors where the business of human work and play, in and out of doors, transacts with the natural). You’re in the Anthropocene.

Source: Why It’s a Problem That John Locke Didn’t Understand Extinction

You’re simply not that big a deal: now isn’t that a relief? | Aeon Ideas


Self-esteem has fallen out of favor, and it is starting to seem these days as if self-compassion is taking its place.

The headlines that keep popping up are: ‘Why Self-love Is Important And How To Cultivate It’ (Medical News Today, 23 March 2018); ‘8 Powerful Steps To Self-Love’ (Psychology Today, 29 June 2017); ‘The Not-So-Secret Secret To Happiness: Be Kinder To Yourself, Okay?’ (The Cut, 22 April 2016). (Fine: I wrote the last one.)

The focus in these pop-psych stories tends to stay squarely on the first part of Neff’s 15-year-old definition: ‘experiencing feelings of caring and kindness toward oneself, taking an understanding, nonjudgmental attitude toward one’s inadequacies and failures’.

From reading many of these pieces, self-compassion seems like self-kindness, and nothing more.

Source: You’re simply not that big a deal: now isn’t that a relief? | Aeon Ideas