Gongol.com Archives: March 2017

Brian Gongol


March 15, 2017

News A bilingual Mexican school system in 20 years

It's an ambitious goal, to be sure. And there will undoubtedly be institutional resistance. But Singapore found a way to become an English-fluent country, so it's not without precedent. And over the long term, it's hard to imagine a lot of investments that would have a higher social return than getting Mexico deeply integrated with the English-speaking world. Good luck to the policy-makers.

News Another independence vote for Scotland?

If the UK is going to leave the EU, then Scotland may have a new excuse to leave the UK. And could you blame them for wanting better access to the bigger market rather than the smaller one? The remaining UK would have every incentive to treat Scotland well and seek favorable terms for trade and other policies if Scotland gained independence but joined the rest of Europe. Not too difficult to game out how this would play if all of the parties involved pursued their own self-interest.

Computers and the Internet US Department of Justice charges Russian FSB officers with hacking Yahoo

There's no getting around the message here: "The FSB officer defendants, Dmitry Dokuchaev and Igor Sushchin, protected, directed, facilitated and paid criminal hackers to collect information through computer intrusions in the U.S. and elsewhere."

Computers and the Internet Marissa Mayer will likely get millions of dollars for leaving Yahoo

A golden parachute indeed

News Our actions reflect our priorities

(Video - in Spanish) Amnesty International says the United States is keeping young children in ICE detention centers for stretches exceeding a year. We really have to ask ourselves: Does that sound like it reflects American values and virtues?

Business and Finance Low interest rates are no longer an extraordinary condition

Per the remarks of Federal Reserve chair Janet Yellen: "The longer-run neutral level of the federal funds rate is still likely to remain below levels that prevailed in previous decades." That's a huge statement that probably goes over the heads of most casual observers. But the thought that the "ordinary" level of interest rates that prevailed for the last half-century or so could be gone -- well, that's quite the change of mindset.

News On peaceful coexistence

Dwight Eisenhower said, "No nation's security and well-being can be lastingly achieved in isolation but only in effective cooperation with fellow nations." It's interesting to examine principles expressed during the Cold War to see whether they hold up today. This one does. If we want a peaceful existence, then we need a peaceful co-existence. It's perfectly fine for us to be different nations from one another, but we need to be cooperatively different.

Broadcasting On the hazards of cable news programming

Watching cable news no more turns you into an engaged citizen then watching ESPN turns you into an Olympic athlete. Exposure to content isn't the same as practice. Good civics requires effort.

The United States of America Everyone wants limited government when the other side is in power

A keen observation from Senator Ben Sasse: "Community is about persuaded values. Politics is about compulsory values."


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