Opinion


Europe’s Silent Majority Speaks Out Friday, June 7th, 2019

Last month’s elections to the European Parliament produced better results than one could have expected, and for a simple reason: the silent pro-European majority has spoken. What they said is that they want to preserve the values on which the European Union was founded, but that they also want..

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China Should Lead on Air Pollution Thursday, June 6th, 2019

The United Nations expects 68% of the world’s population to live in urban areas by 2050. As governments scramble to manage this flood of urban migration, they must address not only basic needs such as housing and employment but also issues impacting liveability and public health – including air..

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What to Do About China? Wednesday, June 5th, 2019

In a recent issue of The New York Review of Books, the historian Adam Tooze notes that, “across the American political spectrum, if there is agreement on anything, it is on the need for a firmer line against China.” He’s right: On this singular issue, the war hawks, liberal internationalists,..

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Trump Is Slowing US Economic Growth Tuesday, June 4th, 2019

For some time, the four horsemen of US macroeconomic policymaking have been taxation, regulation, trade, and infrastructure. Having studied the first in detail, I have found tax cuts to be a positive contributor to economic growth. Though I have considered the second area in less detail, the..

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Deterrence in Cyberspace Monday, June 3rd, 2019

Earlier this year, American officials acknowledged that US offensive cyber operations had stopped Russian disruption of the 2018 congressional election. Such operations are rarely discussed, but this time there was commentary about a new offensive doctrine of “persistent engagement” with..

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Is Christianity Losing to Islam? Sunday, June 2nd, 2019

Populists in Europe and North America like to claim that Christianity in the modern world is on the retreat against a resurgent and confident Islam. Even observers who do not subscribe to the idea that a “clash of civilizations” is occurring often conclude that Christianity is on the..

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Findings of Torture: The UN Rapporteur and Julian Assange Saturday, June 1st, 2019

Another crude and sad chapter, yet more evidence of a system’s vengeance against its challengers. Julian Assange, like they dying Roman emperor Vespasian, may be transforming into a god of sorts, but the suffering of his mortal physical is finding its mark. While some in the cynical, narcissistic..

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FIRST MISTAKE OF MODI GOVERNMENT IN SECOND TERM Friday, May 31st, 2019

It is reported that leader of Tibetan government in exile Mr. Lobsang Sangey was not invited to Mr. Narendra Modi’s swearing in ceremony for his second term as Prime Minister of India. However, the Tibetan leader was invited for Mr. Modi’s swearing in ceremony for the first term in 2014. Why..

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How Central-Bank Independence Dies

With the global rise of populism and autocracy, central-bank independence is under threat, even in advanced economies. Since the 2008 financial crisis, the public has come to expect central banks to shoulder responsibilities far beyond their power and remit. At the same time, populist leaders have..

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After Neoliberalism Thursday, May 30th, 2019

What kind of economic system is most conducive to human wellbeing? That question has come to define the current era, because, after 40 years of neoliberalism in the United States and other advanced economies, we know what doesn’t work. The neoliberal experiment – lower taxes on the rich,..

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Sensation of Financialization Wednesday, May 29th, 2019

Over recent decades, the scope, size, concentration, power and even the purpose and role of finance have changed so significantly that a new term, financialization, was coined to name this phenomenon. Financialization refers to a process that has not only transformed finance itself, but also, the..

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Unforgettable Tiananmen

Thirty years ago this month, I was in Beijing as a British development minister for the annual meeting of the Asian Development Bank. But what took place at that gathering – including the seating for the first time of a delegation from Taiwan – was overshadowed by what was happening across the..

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A Compulsive Matter: Mandatory Voting and its Discontents Tuesday, May 28th, 2019

The session is on Radio National, Australia’s effort at highbrow airings on the wireless. And, to be fair, it often does not disappoint. But on this occasion, there was a general sense of bonhomie amongst the participants on the Big Ideas segment, a glee about living in a glorious country far in..

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India’s Cult of Modi

In 2014, Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi came to power at the helm of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) after articulating a vision of a revived India, a manufacturing giant with high-tech capabilities which could meet the rising aspirations of a growing young population. Modi promised voters..

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Japan Then, China Now Monday, May 27th, 2019

“When governments permit counterfeiting or copying of American products, it is stealing our future, and it is no longer free trade.” So said US President Ronald Reagan, commenting on Japan after the Plaza Accord was concluded in September 1985. Today resembles, in many respects, a remake of..

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How Will the US-China Trade War End?

Dashing hopes of a quick agreement on trade relations with China, US President Donald Trump’s administration has imposed punitive tariffs on another $200 billion of Chinese goods. Now that the Chinese government has responded with new tariffs on $60 billion of US products, the United States is..

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How to Live Better and Stop Destroying the Planet Saturday, May 25th, 2019

Earlier this month, a bleak global assessment of the shocking state of life on Earth made headlines worldwide. According to the report by the Intergovernmental Science-Policy Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services (IPBES), about 12% of all known animal and plant species are now threatened..

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The Russians Are Coming Friday, May 24th, 2019

Is Russia engaged in a new type of war against the West? If so, what effect might it be having on Western politics? Such questions are roiling the United States after the publication of special counsel Robert Mueller’s report, which states unequivocally that Russia launched a “sweeping and..

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Are Indian Democracy’s Weaknesses Inherent?

The failure of the Indian state to provide basic public services and implement job-creating infrastructure projects was a prominent theme in the country’s recent general election. In this regard, critics often compare India unfavorably to China’s seemingly purposeful and effective authoritarian..

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How China Can Reach its Centennial Goal Monday, October 14th, 2019

Two years ago, Chinese President Xi Jinping declared that by the time the People’s Republic celebrates its centenary in 2049, it should be a “great modern socialist..

The Insanity of Austerity Sunday, October 13th, 2019

Significant protest by Tibetans at Chennai Saturday, October 12th, 2019

Europe Needs a Serious Nuclear-Energy Debate Saturday, October 12th, 2019

The Climate Kids Are Right Friday, October 11th, 2019