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Trump and the Paris Agreement

Trump and the Paris Agreement

The negotiations for the Paris Agreement were concluded at the 21st Conference of Parties of the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change in December 2015, and it entered into force in October 2016. It has been signed by 195 countries and ratified by 144. President Trump has repeatedly spoken out against the Paris Agreement and the “climate change industry” and made it a campaign plank to exit the Agreement. For all of its apparent randomness, there is one obvious trend in his Cabinet appointments, past and present, which is to appoint people who exhibit an ideological break from the policies of the past Administration or who are skeptical of the worldview of their respective agencies. Naming a “climate change skeptic” and pro-business advocate, Scott Pruitt, to the Environmental Protection Agency was one such move. Naming a China and free trade skeptic, Robert Lighthizer, to be US Trade Representative (a Cabinet level appointment) was another. And there are still more examples, such as the failed nomination of fast-food CEO Andrew Puzder as Secretary of Labor. More

No. 4, Mar.-Apr. 2017 2017


Plato’s Cave, American Edition

Plato’s Cave, American Edition

Plato’s cave is a place where people sit chained seeing the shadows cast on the wall by a fire and thinking that that is reality. Escaping the cave requires a rough ascent into sunlight to experience reality as it is. A weird and troubling phenomenon is taking place in the political battles surrounding Donald Trump’s Presidency that will reverberate beyond this embattled term, as it sets a new low of public discourse which future political leaders and scandalmongers will find it easier to match. While there is a necessity for strategic ambiguity in politics, it has become impossible to distinguish reality from theater, especially since the media has decided to become a player and not an arbiter. More

No. 3, Jan.-Feb. 2017 2017


A Window into the Future

A Window into the Future

Trying to figure out what America or some other important country will do is a cottage industry that keeps many analysts well fed and in the public eye. One analyzes country profiles, historical precedents, and the national culture and even performs biographical analysis on its decision makers. One area which this author feels is a useful weathervane for the evolution of America’s worldview and political options beyond the medium-term is to see how its elites will shift in the future. More

No. 2, Nov.-Dec. 2016 2016


The Canary Is Choking to Death in the Coalmine

The Canary Is Choking to Death in the Coalmine

Where a rich person decides to live, where he keeps his money, where he invests his money, what measures he takes to safeguard his posterity are infinitely more informative to us than what they simply declare, which is subject to fashions, social pressures, group affiliation tactics or plain, old disinformation. More

No. 1, Sep.-Oct. 2016 2016


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OEconomica No. 1, 2016