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US-China: Geopolitical implications
This week, the US delayed the start of a 10% tariff hike on Chinese goods from September 1st to December 15th. The delay does not include all $300 billion worth of goods on the proposed target list, and only applies to certain products such as cellphones, laptops, and toys. Yesterday, China threatened countermeasures if the tariffs go ahead on the scheduled September 1st start date, but offered no further details.
Though numerous other factors were also in play, markets dropped Wednesday as the prospect of a looming German recession was combined with global economic uncertainty regarding the US-China trade dispute. The US and China have not yet determined when trade talks will continue.
What’s next? The US-China trade dispute has far-reaching geopolitical implications. Let’s see what people have to say on the matter…
Shirley Raines has an unusual flair when it comes to helping the homeless, and no, it’s not just her brightly colored hair. Raines founded the nonprofit Beauty2theStreetz and roams around LA to provide food and haircuts to the homeless, with a gang of bikers serving as her security. As soon as the rumble of motorcycles are heard, people line up in droves for a taste of her home cooked food and on-the-street makeovers. She started the nonprofit in 2016 after grappling with grief and depression following the loss of her son, and is determined to help others make it through their own personal trauma – she now helps hundreds of people each week.
How often do you pay attention to billboards? All of them lining the highway are fighting for your gaze, but one in Kansas City especially stands out. The billboard in question was commissioned by artist Nicole Leth and reads: “You are human. You are loveable. You are strong. You are enough.” Leth commissioned the billboard to prevent suicide, something very close to her – when she was 17, her father took his own life. She’s now made it her life’s mission to show others they truly matter before it’s too late. The billboard has helped to accomplish just that – she’s received numerous emails from people have reached out after witnessing the billboard, citing its message as the reason they got through another day. Now she wants to spread the message across the nation, and plans to rent additional billboards in Florida, Iowa, Missouri, Texas and Canada.
When Diane was picked up for work by her Uber driver, Lamiya Jabbar, she never could’ve imagined where the day was headed. On the ride to her employer, Tim Hortons, the two began to talk – it turns out Diane spends most of the money she earns taking care of her grandkids, and was really looking forward to Christmas so she could receive a dress for church, a new robe and shoes to wear around the house. That conversation stuck with Lamiya, who decided to take action. She hit Old Navy to pick up a dress for Diane, and to purchase a $50 Visa gift card to cover the shoes and robe she desperately wanted. After completing the errand, Lamiya backtracked to Diane’s work and went through the drive-thru, surprising Diane with the gifts she had purchased hours earlier. According to Diane, that act of kindness turned her entire day around. That’s definitely worth a 5 star rating.
Israel denied entry to US Democratic Congresswomen Ilhan Omar and Rashida Tlaib for their planned trip to the Israeli-occupied West Bank. Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu cited their support for a movement to boycott Israel as the reason behind the action.
Toy Story 4 became the fifth Disney film this year to cross $1 billion in global ticket sales. This makes it the 8th highest grossing animated movie of all time, and Disney has now made close to $8 billion this year at the box office (a studio all-time annual record… and it’s mid-August).
UPS announced an investment in autonomous truck startup TuSimple yesterday. The shipping company also announced it’s been partnered with TuSimple since May, and completed a successful pilot test of autonomous truck cargo delivery between Phoenix and Tucson, Arizona.
Network infrastructure provider Cloudflare filed for IPO yesterday. The company reported ~$130 million in revenue against ~$37 million in losses for the first half of 2019, and was valued at $3.2 billion in its last funding round (per Business Insider).
GE shares dropped 11% yesterday after analyst Harry Markopolos released a 175-page report alleging the company is committing accounting fraud (though he stands to benefit from the company’s decline). Markopolos is best known as the whistleblower for the Bernie Madoff Ponzi scheme investigation.
What’s the matter with dark matter? A physicist who has been compared to Einstein has a radical theory about gravity that debunks the existence of dark matter (which supposedly comprises 27% of the universe).
History buff? Check out the By the People project – the Library of Congress is calling on volunteers to transcribe thousands of first-hand historical documents from its vaults.
The fingerprint of the future? Scientists are finding ways to use your voice to capture clues about your location, medical conditions, and even what you look like. (WSJ)