China's Unsustainable Development
Like teenagers with their first credit card, local Chinese officials armed with cheap state loans and money from land sales are splurging on lavish projects of dubious value.
What's the Latest Development?
Though they face government retaliation, Chinese citizens across the undeveloped countryside are exposing wasteful government projects undertaken to give the appearance of economic growth. In impoverished Wangjiang, "the local government is constructing a headquarters on a slab of land the size of the Pentagon building—a sprawling edifice of granite and glass with a $10-million price tag." In a small city in the central Anhui province, plans were announced to build a $44 million hotel designed to look like a pingpong paddle.
What's the Big Idea?
As China's economy slows in response to a decrease in global demand, its government officials are looking for ways to maintain (the appearance of) growth, which is an imperative in Chinese political life. That often entails local governments borrowing huge sums of money to finance construction projects. But since since localities are prohibited from borrowing directly from banks, public land is often offered as collateral to "off-the-books investment companies with little oversight." It is the Chinese version of America's sub-prime mortgage crisis.
Delay, deny and deflect were the strategies Facebook has used to navigate scandals it's faced in recent years, according to the New York Times.
- The exhaustive report is based on interviews with more than 50 people with ties to the company.
- It outlines how senior executives misled the public and lawmakers in regards to what it had discovered about privacy breaches and Russian interference in U.S. politics.
- On Thursday, Facebook cut ties with one of the companies, Definers Public Relations, listed in the report.
Protected animals are feared to be headed for the black market.
Sure we know it would be bad, but what do all of these scary numbers really mean?
- At the press time, the value was $21.7 trillion dollars.
- Lots of people know that a default would be bad, but not everybody seems to get how horrible it would be.
- While the risk is low, knowing what would happen if a default did occur is important information for all voters.
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