The decimation wrought by Russia’s invasion of Ukraine on 2022 Feb 24 has been immense. Ukraine has crumbled, its economy severely damaged and its people scattered across the EU and the Western world. On one hand Ukraine has a bully neighbour intent on destroying it, while on the other Western countries have continued to provide Ukraine with enough weapons to continue its fight, the result being even more destruction of Ukraine. Ukraine’s predicament has had many other global implications, almost all bad.
Talking to work out differences of opinion can give you great results that are acceptable to all parties. It is the premise that the United Nations and even the European Union has been built. That said, all these discussions do take a lot of time, and can be very bureaucratic. Going to extremes, having so many discussions can be used as a tool against one of the parties. This is a manipulation of one party over another. This is where I think the UN has sadly gone so wrong.
It seems almost quaint: Live so you are comfortable but still not deplete the world’s resources. This is called doughnut economics. The third world should strive to bring up their standard of living, but the first world should not live beyond their means and deplete the world’s resources. Huh?
Amsterdam Doughnut Economics
It seems pretty reasonable, really. China, India and other poorer countries strive to economically improve and pull people out of poverty. That can only be a good thing. But then you have the first world countries consuming way beyond their means, because they are rich and because they can. As China and India improve, why should they not also consume beyond the earth’s means as well? The reason is that the world will then be depleted and we, as a species, will all suffer.
Recently I have been observing a different WordPress spam technique that uses WP trackbacks. This technique has some interesting characteristics that are unlike other types of spam, so my usual clues as to origin and banning method did not work. Fortunately this technique also has some unique characteristics that can be used to ban them. Fortunately.
When one WP site links to another WP site, the WP sites communicate with each other using a method called trackbacks. The first site sends a trackback request to the second site. The second site posts the trackback as a special comment, which invites the user to click through to the first site. These trackbacks are automated, making it convenient for both sites.
It had to happen. It was predictable, and everyone saw it coming. Therefore it should not be a surprise that there is an impending trade war with China. Let’s discuss and document some of the issues.
China has grown stronger, and this is good. What is not good is their increasingly aggressive trade and military stances in the world. Their military buildup in the disputed South China Sea islands has antagonized all their neighbours and has destabilized the region. Using Chinese Coast Guard vessels to hassle indigenous Philippine fishermen, in their own waters, is not friendly. There are kidnappings of Chinese businessmen from Thailand, which is completely out of China’s jurisdiction. There are also Chinese influence and incursions into foreign politics that many countries such as Australia, find distasteful.
As Trump is mysteriously quiet about Russia, Trudeau is silent on China. It is very curious why the two of North America’s leaders are so silent. Is there no leader with the balls to speak about the blatantness of China? China’s increasingly aggressive behaviour includes:
Forced technological transfer to Chinese companies, if you wish to sell product in China
Claiming the South China Sea and all islands as Chinese, with historical reasoning.
blatant human rights abuses against not only their own citizens, but also those of Taiwan and Hong Kong
Tolerance of an increasingly nuclear North Korea
At least the US has representatives, though not Trump, that somewhat says censures China’s aggressive attitude to internationalization.