“A superpower declared war on a great power and nobody noticed.”
News Items covers four subjects: (1) World in Disarray, (2) Financialization of Everything, (3) Advances in Science and Technology, and (4) Electoral politics, foreign and domestic. Six days a week, not Sundays. Weekdays by ~6:45am ET. Saturdays: sometime in the morning, usually.
1. The Economist:
Any conclusion that Sars-Cov-2 was engineered will be hotly contested. China denies the virus came from a Chinese lab, and has asked for investigations into whether it may have originated in America. Dr Washburne and his colleagues say their predictions are testable. If a progenitor genome to Sars-Cov-2 is found in the wild with restriction sites that are the same, or intermediate, it would raise the chances that this pattern evolved by chance.
Any widely supported conclusion that the virus was genetically engineered would have profound ramifications, both political and scientific. It would put in a new light the behavior of the Chinese government in the early days of the outbreak, particularly its reluctance to share epidemiological data from those days. It would also raise questions about what was known, when, and by whom about the presumably accidental escape of an engineered virus. For now, this is a first draft of science, and needs to be treated as such. But the scrutineers are already at work. (Source: economist.com)
2. Ed Luce:
Imagine that a superpower declared war on a great power and nobody noticed. Joe Biden this month launched a full-blown economic war on China — all but committing the US to stopping its rise — and for the most part, Americans did not react.
To be sure, there is Russia’s war on Ukraine and inflation at home to preoccupy attention. But history is likely to record Biden’s move as the moment when US-China rivalry came out of the closet. America is now pledged to do everything short of fighting an actual war to stop China’s rise.
It is not clear that corporate America, or its foreign counterparts, have fully digested what is about to hit them. For decades, serious businesses have based their growth models on having a China strategy — whether it be by exporting to China, or producing there, or both. Unless a company’s product is, say, luxury goods or agricultural commodities, Biden’s technological decoupling will hit their bottom line. His escalation also marks a final break with decades of US foreign policy that assumed China’s global integration would tame its rise as a great power. (Source: ft.com)
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