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posted on 23 April 2017

What We Read Today 23 April 2017 - Special Public Edition

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This special public posting of this column is presented as a convenience to Global Economic Inetrsection members who normally access this article from our daily newsletter. Due to a timing error this post missed the deadline for the newsletter today. The bonus for non-members is they also get to read today's article.

Econintersect: Every day our editors collect the most interesting things they find from around the internet and present a summary "reading list" which will include very brief summaries (and sometimes longer ones) of why each item has gotten our attention. Suggestions from readers for "reading list" items are gratefully reviewed, although sometimes space limits the number included.


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This feature is published every day late afternoon New York time. For early morning review of headlines see "The Early Bird" published every day in the early am at GEI News (membership not required for access to "The Early Bird".).

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Topics today include:

  • This is What is Keeping Cryptocurrencies from Mass Adoption

  • The False Promise of Protectionism

  • Four charts which should worry you about rising house prices and inequality

  • Two-thirds of Americans think that the Democratic Party is out of touch with the country

  • Trump voters don’t have buyer’s remorse. But some Hillary Clinton voters do.

  • Trump's 25 executive orders in 100 days: more cosmetic than substantive

  • Trump won't say if he'll sign funding bill without border wall money

  • US reopens door to reviving EU trade talks

  • France elections: Macron and Le Pen 'through to run-off'

  • Second Leading Conservationist Shot in Kenya Within Last Month

  • Trump team raises rhetoric against Iran

  • Russian bombers again fly near Alaska

  • Afghanistan reels from Taliban's deadliest attack on army since 2001

  • North Korea 'ready to sink' US aircraft carrier Vinson

  • And More

Articles about events, conflicts and disease around the world

U.S.

  • Two-thirds of Americans think that the Democratic Party is out of touch with the country (The Washington Post) You might not be surprised if I were to tell you that a majority of Americans think that President Trump is out of touch with the concerns of most people in the United States today. Sure, he won the election, but a plurality of voters opposed him, and a new Washington Post-ABC News poll shows that he hasn’t expanded his base of support significantly since then. You certainly wouldn’t be surprised to learn that there’s a broad partisan split on the question, as there is on nearly everything in politics these days. The two graphs below show how opinions are divided on whether the two major parties are in tough with concerns of most of the people.

republicans.out.of.touch.2017.apr.21

democrats.out.of.touch.2017.apr.2

  • Trump's 25 executive orders in 100 days: more cosmetic than substantive (The Guardian) The president’s 25 executive orders, 24 memorandums and 20 proclamations establish big goals, but few provide legislative prescriptions. Donald Trump has signed dozens of executive orders - aiming to fulfil a campaign pledge to undo what he called his predecessor’s “unconstitutional" acts and take unilateral action on the economy and immigration. But these actions do things like order agency reviews and studies, ask for recommendations or tinker at the margins of existing law.

  • Trump won't say if he'll sign funding bill without border wall money (The Hill) President Trump in a new interview refused to say whether he would sign an upcoming spending bill to keep the government running if it does not include funding for his proposed wall on the U.S.-Mexico border. In an interview with The Associated Press published on Sunday, Trump insisted the wall will not be “that expensive" when first asked about signing the budget. His political opponents do not want the wall and are digging in against including funding for it in a bill to keep the government funded past its April 28 deadline. Trump initially promised that Mexico would pay for the wall, though that country has said it will not. On Sunday, Trump said Mexico will eventually pay for it.

  • Trump voters don’t have buyer’s remorse. But some Hillary Clinton voters do. (The Washington Post) A new Washington Post-ABC News poll confirms this - in spades. And, in fact, it shows more buyer's remorse for Trump's opponent in the 2016 election, Hillary Clinton. And were the 2016 election held again today, it shows Trump would avenge his popular-vote loss. While just 4% of Trump's supporters say they would back someone else if there was a redo of the election, fully 15% of Clinton supporters say they would ditch her. Trump leads in a re-do of the 2016 election 43% to 40% after losing the popular vote in November 46-44. Econintersect: Out take on this is that the 15% lost by Clinton were most likely not motivated to vote for her but against Trump. With the outcome being that Trump won, 13% of the 15% wish they had voted for someone other than the top 2 candidates or not have voted at all.

trump.remorse.2017.apr.21

clinton.remorse.2017.apr.21

EU

  • US reopens door to reviving EU trade talks (Financial Times) Donald Trump’s top trade official has opened the door to reviving negotiations with the EU but warned the bloc it would be in competition with China and Japan to show willingness to do the first deal with the new US administration. In an interview with the Financial Times, Wilbur Ross, US commerce secretary, called the need to reduce the US’s $146 billion transatlantic trade deficit in goods one of his priorities. That deficit is second only to the US’s $347 billion one with China. The billionaire investor is due to host Cecilia Malmström, the EU’s trade commissioner, in Washington on Monday.

France

  • France elections: Macron and Le Pen 'through to run-off' (BBC News) The centrist Emmanuel Macron will face far-right leader Marine Le Pen in a run-off for the French presidency on 7 May, multiple projections indicate. An Ipsos/Sopra Steria poll puts Mr Macron on 23.7% in first-round voting with Ms Le Pen on 21.7%. Opinion polls have consistently predicted Mr Macron defeating his rival in the run-off. The run-off election os 2 weeks from today, 07 May.

Kenya

  • Kuki Gallmann shot and wounded at Kenya conservation park (BBC News) Renowned Italian-born conservationist Kuki Gallmann has been shot and injured in an ambush at her conservation park in central Kenya. The author of the best-selling memoir I Dreamed of Africa was airlifted to hospital for treatment. Ms Gallmann, 73, owns the Laikipia Nature Conservancy. She also ran a luxury safari lodge that was burned down last month by suspected cattle herders, who have been in conflict with landowners.

Herders have been invading private property in search of fresh grazing in the drought-stricken Laikipia region.

British rancher Tristan Voorspuy, who also ran a safari company, was shot dead in early March while inspecting his lodges in Laikipia.

Iran

  • Trump team raises rhetoric against Iran (The Hill) The Trump administration is stepping up its rhetoric against Iran even as it acknowledges the country is in compliance with a nuclear deal the president has long derided. Since fulfilling a legal requirement to certify to Congress that Iran is complying with the deal, administration officials have repeatedly slammed Tehran. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson compared the country to North Korea, and President Trump declared that Iran is violating the “spirit" of the deal. said Suzanne Maloney, an Iran expert at the Brookings Institution said:

[The administration’s actions were to make sure that] the certification wasn’t perceived as a newfound approval of the [deal] as a mechanism for dealing with Iran.. The statements that we’ve seen from Tillerson are reflective of what I see as an emerging focus on Iran as a major priority."

Russia

  • Russian bombers again fly near Alaska (Fox News) For the second consecutive night, Russia flew two long-range bombers off the coast of Alaska on Tuesday, this time coming within 36 miles of the mainland while flying north of the Aleutian Islands, two U.S. officials told Fox News. The two nuclear-capable Tu-95H bombers were spotted by U.S. military radar at 5 p.m. local time Tuesday evening.

Unlike a similar incident Monday night, this time the U.S. Air Force did not scramble any fighter jets.

Instead, it launched a single E-3 Sentry early warning aircraft, known as AWACS, to make sure there were only the two Russian bombers flying near Alaska, and not other aircraft flying underneath the large bombers.

U.S. territorial waters extend 12 nautical miles from shore.

Afghanistan

  • Afghanistan reels from Taliban's deadliest attack on army since 2001 (The Guardian) Afghans are still reeling from the Taliban’s deadliest attack on the security forces since 2001, with the country’s leadership accused of fumbling the response to the atrocity. As many as a dozen militants stormed the largest army base in northern Afghanistan on Friday, killing at least 140 soldiers, many of them unarmed. In an apparent attempt to save face, the central administration has continuously downplayed the death toll, which has been confirmed by anonymous officials in many corners of government.

North Korea

  • North Korea 'ready to sink' US aircraft carrier Vinson (BBC News) North Korea is "ready to sink" a US aircraft carrier heading for the peninsula, state media have said. A commentary in the Rodong Sinmun newspaper warned that the USS Carl Vinson could be sunk "with a single strike". A battle group headed by the Vinson is expected off the peninsula this week. It was despatched by President Donald Trump amid a warning that US "strategic patience" over the North's nuclear ambitions had come to an end. Tension also rose after a recent failed missile test by the North and a massive military parade showing off its latest hardware.

Other Scientific, Health, Political, Economics, and Business Items of Note - plus Miscellanea

  • What’s keeping cryptocurrencies from mass adoption? (Tech Crunch) Speculators flocked to Bitcoin and many of the alt-coins in hopes of getting in early and making a big exit, but everyday users haven’t warmed to cryptocurrencies. There are many reasons why, but one of the largest barriers to mainstream adoption is the price volatility of cryptocurrencies. So the question is, why do the prices change so much in the first place? It comes down to supply and demand: Most cryptocurrencies have only a fixed total supply, and yet demand for the coins is uncertain and constantly fluctuating thanks to speculation. Of course, it’s easy enough to talk about the problem - coming up with a solution is quite another matter.

  • The False Promise of Protectionism (Bloomberg) Gideon Rose, Editor of Foreign Affairs Magazine, discusses with Tom Keene the new article by Dartmouth's Douglas Irwin "The False Promise of Protectionism". (Douglas Irwin has contributed to GEI.)

false.promise.protectionism.video


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