THIS WEEK’S MUST READ NEWS FROM CAPX | NEW DIRECTION
3 June 2016
New Direction | The Foundation for European Reform is an international partner of CapX, a new digital service which commissions and aggregates the best news on popular capitalism from around the world.
Last Thursday, opposition militia organised widespread demonstrations against President Joseph Kabila across the Democratic Republic of Congo. They are accusing Kabila of trying to delay elections until he can change the constitution to allow him to run for a third term. The imminent delay of the elections has raised fears among DRC’s international allies that ultimately the massive country is moving toward a violent collapse.
Governments are incapable of picking individual winners, let alone planning an entire economy’s ever-changing manpower needs. The area of fastest employment growth in Britain is care for the elderly. These are low-skill jobs that young Britons spurn. A skills-biased points system would deprive elderly Britons of proper care. And it would damage British businesses that rely on EU migrants to pick fruit, clean offices and much else.
North Korea is one of the most militarised countries in the world, capable of wiping out Seoul. Donald Trump suggested withdrawing US troops from South Korea, and now a North Korean newspaper has called him a “far-sighted presidential candidate”. That the government of a country which routinely imprisons, tortures and murders its own citizens wants Trump to become President of the US is a sign of just how dangerous he is to global stability.
To explain our insane fascination with socialism, many point to a growing body of research which suggests that we are by nature envious of those who amass disproportionate wealth and power. Our stone age brains also find it difficult to comprehend, let alone appreciate, extended trade and specialisation. But another explanation for socialism's persistent appeal is our power of self-delusion, and ability to hold onto beliefs that are patently not true.
In the first quarter of 2016, Chinese debt rose to 237% of GDP, a level comparable to that of the US or the Eurozone and much larger than most developing economies. How much longer can China continue to use the same stimulus tools, with the ballooning credit that comes with them, to postpone a reckoning with its slowing economic growth? Yukon Hang, Francesco Sisci, Derek Scissors and Houze Song debate China's prospects.
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