Quote of the day

"I have yet to see a problem which, when looked at in the right way, did not become more complicated"
— Paul Alderson

The Clintons And Brand Architecture

“Companies master-brand because it works. Once a company name is recognizable it can be used to lift other products up. Bill imbued the Clinton name with value and it lifted Hillary, Chelsea and eventually the Clinton Foundation.” But branding also requires discipline. Putting the name on a faulty product devalues the name. The Clinton Foundation seems to be a faulty product. Hillary Clinton is suffering for it now (1,745 words)

Will America Defend Taiwan?

The balance of power has changed beyond recognition since America signed the Taiwan Relations Act in 1979. Back then China was poor and weak. Now it is rich and strong. None of America’s Asian allies, except possibly Japan, would join a war with China. “Today a US-China conflict would impose equal risks and costs on both sides.” Which gives, in effect, the advantage to China. It has more at stake, and thus greater resolve (887 words)

China’s Fading Migrant Miracle

The great migration of rural workers into China’s cities has run its course, and with it the most dynamic phase of China’s economic growth. The rapid ageing of the population, the legacy of China’s one-child policy, is starting to squeeze the labour supply further, in cities and countryside alike. “If you go to the villages, I’m sure you won’t find any agricultural labourer under 30 years old. They’re just not there” (2,040 words)

Mass Incarceration: The Silence Of The Judges

“For too long, too many judges have been too quiet about an evil of which we are a part: mass incarceration. More than 2.2 million people are currently incarcerated in US jails and prisons. Most of the increase in imprisonment has been for nonviolent offenses, such as drug possession. If current rates hold, one-third of all black men will be imprisoned at some point in their lifetimes … Basically, we treat them like dirt” (3,460 words)

Test Drive Of A Petrol Car

Not only are they dirty and noisy, they are also extremely expensive to run: “How much does it cost to fill up at home, and how many free stations are there? The seller looked very puzzled at us and explained that it is not possible to refuel gasoline cars at home, and there are no free gas stations. Apparently you have to several times a month drive to the gas station to recharge your petrol car at extortionate prices” (1,860 words)

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