Connect with us

Americas

An Evaluation and Prediction on COVID-19 Pandemic Development in the U.S.

Published

on

The COVID-19 outbreak in the United States continues to worsen recently. From July 1 to 3, the number of new infections in the United States exceeded 50,000 per day, setting a record high. As of July 3, more than 132,000 people in the United States died of coronavirus, accounting for 24.8% of all COVID-19 deaths worldwide. This means that one out of every four COVID-19 deaths worldwide is American. In view of this, it is now necessary to make a mid-term basic judgment and prediction on the development of the pandemic in the United States.

Researchers at ANBOUND believe that although the U.S. economy and capital markets are now facing a multitude of problems, the main impact at the current stage is due to the pandemic. The impact of the pandemic on the U.S. economy is huge, and the capital market is affected by the development of the pandemic. In addition, another major issue of concern is the reaction of the U.S. Congress on the pandemic. If the pandemic continues, the U.S. Congress is bound to increase the appropriation to save the economy, and such appropriation under the modern monetary system is likely to influence and interfere with the interest rate policy of the Federal Reserve.

American society’s attitude towards the pandemic is sometimes inconceivable to Asians. CNN reported on July 2 that a cluster of infections had occurred in a bar near the Michigan State University campus. At least 152 confirmed cases are linked to the bar, according to Ingham Health Department spokeswoman Amanda Darche. The cases that were traced to the bar includes 128 primary cases and 24 secondary cases; secondary cases here refer to those infected by people who have been to the bar. American media reported that the bar that caused the mass infection was “Harper’s Restaurant & Brew Pub”, officially opened on June 12. Although signs to wear masks were posted in the bar, few of its patrons actually doing that. Photos posted on social media by some netizens showing that there was a long queue in front of the bar and no one was wearing a mask. After the incident, the local health authority has requested self-isolation of those who visited the bar between June 12 and June 20.

On July 1, Michigan Governor Gretchen Whitmer announced a ban on indoor bar service in most of the state. Several states, including Texas and California, have also ordered the bars to close. America’s top infectious disease expert, Anthony Fauci, has warned that people in bars are at great risk of infection during a “virus pandemic”. “Congregation at a bar, inside, is bad news. We really got to stop that right now,” he added.

Based on various pandemic information, researchers at ANBOUND concluded that although countries have different control policies in the face of the pandemic, the impact of the virus pandemic always exists, and this is especially true for the United States. The United States is a federal country, the power of social control lies in the state government, and each state government is different in government leadership, hence the extent of pandemic control is also different. From an objective point of view, the contribution of the scientific community in the United States to public policy is rather limited. The major contribution of the scientific community is in the research and development of pharmaceutical products. Therefore, based on our comprehensive prediction, it is estimated that the effective control of the pandemic in the United States will come when the vaccine development is completed and the vaccine is promoted and wildly applied. Judging by the timing, the fastest time for the vaccine to be available is around the summer of 2021. As for the United States’ reliance on effective public policy, governance power, and social control to limit the spread of the pandemic, that is highly unlikely. Therefore, the core issue of pandemic control in the United States has to be the development and application of vaccines.

On this basis, the outlook for the world economy around the summer of 2021 is highly uncertain. Overall, European economies are more confident and likely to remain stable. In addition to China, the situation in Asia will be more stable. China’s economy has been affected by both the pandemic and control policies. Excessively strict and unnecessary control measures may have negative effects and consequences. Therefore, it is expected that the Chinese economy will maintain a steady downward trend. The U.S. economy, due to the recurrence and continuation of the pandemic, is likely to stimulate the U.S. Congress to further implement the economic stimulus package. Chan Kung, the chief researcher at ANBOUND, predicts that the Federal Reserve will have no alternative but to accept negative interest rates if the future stimulus package from the U.S. Congress exceeds USD 5 trillion.

A negative interest rate in the U.S. would have a huge impact on the U.S. financial market and may even lead to a structural adjustment. In particular, the financial industry of the United States is based on the insurance industry, which is very sensitive to negative interest rates. Moreover, a Joe Biden victory in this year’s election would make it more likely for him to launch a new economic stimulus package in order to win the Democratic Party’s new political landscape. Whether this new stimulus package will be passed in the Congress, and whether it will exceed the USD 5 trillion, all these depend on the more conventional political attitude of the Republican Party.

Final analysis conclusion

The COVID-19 pandemic has become a major factor affecting the U.S. economy and capital markets. If the pandemic in the U.S. continues to flare up and worsen, the U.S. Congress might roll out economic stimulus totaling more than USD 5 trillion, and the Federal Reserve could very well implement negative interest rates.

Founder of Anbound Think Tank in 1993, Chan Kung is now ANBOUND Chief Researcher. Chan Kung is one of China’s renowned experts in information analysis. Most of Chan Kung‘s outstanding academic research activities are in economic information analysis, particularly in the area of public policy.

Continue Reading
Comments

Americas

Weakness or calculation? How the pandemic undermined the US world leadership

Published

on

Anyone watching the numerous doomsday movies, happily churned out by Hollywood, will see American doctors saving the planet from space-borne viruses and the plague epidemic that turn people into zombies. However, the very first serious test in a decade has shown that the US healthcare system is actually inferior even to the Russian one, created during the Cold War years. And this despite the fact, that for the past 30 years, the Russian medical system has been suffering from “optimizations,” cuts and underfunding. Moreover, while the Kremlin, even for propaganda reasons, has managed to provide real assistance to a number of European countries, and has been the first to launch a vaccine on the market, Washington’s actions can be regarded as a sign of weakness, and a very dangerous one to its allies at that.

More than a year after the start of the global lockdown, we can already sum up the initial results, which look disappointing to Washington. The US healthcare system has collapsed under the pressure, thus laying bare the country’s inability to bring the outbreak of a less-than-deadly disease under control. As for Russia, despite its lack of America’s vast resources, it still managed to win the vaccine race and become the first to come up with a viable antidote.

More importantly, Moscow has also come out on top in the information “war” with the West, with its Sputnik V vaccine proving to have far fewer side effects than its Pfizer and Moderna counterparts. Therefore, the US and British lobbying of their own vaccines, and their attempts to close the European market for the Russian vaccine look unethical, to say the least, all the more so amid numerous European media reports about people having  died from side effects after being inoculated with Western vaccines. At the same time, there are simply no reports about similar complications caused by the Russian vaccine, even though the European Commission and Brussels have been keeping a close eye on the effects of its use in European countries, including Serbia and Hungary, which have already taken the first deliveries of the Sputnik V vaccine.

What is the reason for the US demonstrating its weakness? How come that in the midst of the epidemic Washington was unable to find the resources to demonstrate its readiness to lend a helping hand to its European allies? Unfortunately, one of the reasons was that the Americans simply freaked out. The truth is, the US healthcare system is rather decentralized and unorganized. People with good health insurance have little to worry about. However, in a situation of a pandemic, the US medical facilities are pretty hard to manage, so one has to do it manually. Compounded by the general atmosphere of panic and the fact that the poorest strata of society, who have no health insurance and constitute the main risk zone (obesity due to malnutrition, advanced chronic diseases and other COVID-inducing conditions), the system simply collapsed. Therefore, it is not surprising that the Trump administration tried to keep maximum resources at home. Moreover, the businessman-turned-president, who had openly spoken about “exporting security,” never missed a chance to make it clear to his allies that US assistance is never free. As a result, he was replaced by Biden, a Democrat who advocates maximum support for all democratic forces. However, Democrats usually provide moral or military support, but they have proved equally unprepared to line up any serious assistance to the countries hit the hardest by the pandemic.

Moreover, it was actually at the suggestion of the United States and the UK that the COVAX system, a global initiative aimed at providing equitable (but not free) access to COVID-19 vaccines for countries in need, stalled. It turned out (who might have guessed?) that both the US-developed Moderna and the British AstraZeneca vaccines are primarily needed by their own electorates, and only then by countries that need them, but are unable to produce their own vaccine. Meanwhile, India with a population of over 1 billion, managed to fulfill its obligations, and Russia is ready to launch the production of vaccines in Europe. However, bending under Washington’s pressure, the European Union has banned the import of Russian, Indian and Chinese vaccines, without bothering to explain the reasons for this ban.

A country, claiming world domination cannot lead in everything, of course.  Therefore, it is not surprising that the healthcare systems of many European countries, like Sweden and Switzerland, are way better that what they now have in the United States. That being said, the world leader still bears full responsibility for its allies and cannot leave them to their own devices, not only in the event of a military conflict, but also in the midst of a pandemic. However, this is exactly what it did…

From our partner International Affairs

Continue Reading

Americas

The legacy of 2020, and 2021 in the prospects of the United States and China

Published

on

usa-china
image source: cnn.com

2020 was a crucial year because of Covid-19, which disrupted the evolution of the world order in the direction of differentiation and transformation. This is the most severe crisis the human world has faced since the Second World War.

As of 10 May 2021, According to the Hopkins University Global New Crown Epidemic Statistics Report, as of May 10, 2021 there have been 158,993,826 confirmed cases worldwide and 3,305,018 deaths.

The pandemic is like a fatal global social test. On the basis of a world order that has already undergoing a crisis, it has not only caused a pause and thus a deceleration of economic development, but it has also stepped up social division and the transfer of power from the political to the technical sphere.

Although the most experienced analysts and leading research institutions have published various reports, currently none of them can accurately predict in detail the huge impact of the pandemic on the history of the 21st century.

The pandemic, however, will bring about major changes in four areas.

Firstly, it will accelerate the general trend of global economic recession and differentiation. This is due to the currency over-issue policies adopted by several countries and to intensified domestic social polarisation. Since 2018 the global economic and financial crisis has not yet been solved. On the contrary, the crisis has only been concealed by the short-term response of monetary policy.

Secondly, the pandemic will speed up internal changes and the reorganisation of the international political and economic order precisely due to internal social differentiation. Owing to the turbulent influence of domestic and international policies, economic and political risks in fragile regions of the world will intensify or have knock-on effects.

Thirdly, the pandemic will strengthen the digital society and competition between countries in building new technologies will become more intense. The most significant impact of digital society is the silent arrival of a transparent society that exists but has no human contacts.

Fourthly, the pandemic promotes the rise of vaccine nationalism and accelerates the revival of the community value of East Asian countries, which has epochal significance from the perspective of the history of world civilisation.

The most influential political and economic event in 2020 was the US elections and the related change of Administration. The US elections represented the sharpest but also the most frustrating change in US history. Although Donald Trump lost the election, 74,216,154 citizens voted for the outgoing President.

For the United States, the change in direction cannot be seen as the advent of a resolute and determined policy along one single line, as the basic reality of the highly divided American society was not changed, but indeed strengthened due to the general election. The huge impact promoted the spread of political violence and protests in the United States.

Source: The US Crisis Monitor, Bridging Divides Initiative, Princeton School of Public and International Affairs’, Liechtenstein Institute on Self-Determination.

First of all, Donald Trump lost the election, but the spectre of Trumpism has remained in the United States and even in Europe, which is generally not conducive to advancing the strategy of developing relations with China.

Secondly, the “antagonism” of the US strategy towards China has not changed radically. Trump hadopened a political-economic dispute with China. Itisparticularlynoteworthythat the younger generation of the Republican leadership isgraduallybecominghostile and negative towards China, and exertsgreatinfluence in Congress.Thisdoesnotfavours world peace.

Thirdly, if this attitude is not contained, it will lead to negative long-term impacts between high-tech decoupling and ideological competition. Finally, China’s policy towards the United States has been perfected and refined: although the government is still adopting a wait-and-see attitude, the voice of seeking cooperation and being rational and pragmatic is still the mainstream in China.

Besides the issue that China will reduce its dependence on the world and increase world’s dependence on China itself, China will reduce its dependence on traditional growth models and increase its care for social, green and environmental sustainability.

The year 2021 is proving that the focus of the analysis of global political and economic trends will still be competition between China and the United States. President Biden’s Administration still regards China as its main strategic competitor, but the methods of addressing the issue are quite different from those of Trump’s Administration. The main difference lies in the fact that President Biden focuses on solving domestic problems and does not exclude the most important issues with China.

President Biden’s Administration has adapted its strategy for China as the influence of major lobbies and interest groups – such as the US finance and military industry – on policy is constant compared to the previous Administration. Nevertheless, the Chinese factor in the chain of global interests keeps higher levels.

Indeed, voices from both parties in the US Congress calling for curbing China’s rise are also increasing.

In short, in terms of China’s policy direction, President Biden’s Administration is expected to oppose a trade war because it harms the core interests of the US business community. However, there are likely to be problems for Taiwan, Xianggang (Hong Kong), Xinjiang Weiwu’er (Uyghur), South China Sea, Xizang (Tibet), as well as other issues.

The possibility of renewed trade negotiations between China and the United States is expected to increase significantly in the future and the US strategy of constructive competition will be reformed.

Regardless of changes in Sino-US relations, China will certainly promote greater bilateral and multilateral investment cooperation, while seeking new development and shaping new models of cooperation.

The key areas which are currently the most important and noteworthy are, firstly, China’s joining the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP) and seeking to adhere to the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP), which shows that China’s top leadership has decided to continue the reform strategy of internal and external promotion.

The RCEP is a free trade agreement in the Asia-Pacific region between the ten States of the Association of South-East Asian Nations (Brunei, Cambodia, Philippines, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Myanmar, Singapore, Thailand and Vietnam) and five of their free trade partners: Australia, China, the Republic of Korea (South Korea), Japan and New Zealand. These Member States account for approximately 30% of world’s population and GDP, thus making it the largest trading bloc.

The CPTPP, instead, is a draft regional investment and regulatory treaty in which negotiations, until 2014, twelve Pacific and Asian countries participated: Australia, Brunei, Canada, Chile, Japan, Malaysia, Mexico, New Zealand, Peru, Singapore, the USA and Vietnam.

Indeed, between the RCEP and the CPTPP, there is not only the interconnection of the industrial chain and commonality -and more reasons for unity than differences – but also the influence of great powers’ strategic factors.

The main difference between the two is that the CPTPP has higher economic quality requirements, while the RECP is more inclusive. Secondly, the China-EU trade and investment agreement is likely to be signed, which has clear short-term interests for Europe and long-term strategic interests for China. China, however, still needs to take a cautious attitude towards European policy and its legal systems based on double standards. Thirdly, China and Russia are strengthening comprehensive strategic cooperation and there will be new opportunities for their cooperation in the energy and military sectors.

Continue Reading

Americas

Why Congress should be rough on Chris Miller at his testimony on Wednesday

Published

on

FBI director Chris Wray’s weak congressional testimony in March left most of the Capitol attack questions unanswered and most of us scratching our heads: if the chiefs of the intelligence agencies don’t know, then who does?

As I argued back in March, before Senate Wray picked the low hanging fruit questions — such as confirming that the Trump mob that stormed the Capitol was indeed Trump’s mob and not some other people — while conviniently glazing over the real questions.

This is why the congressional testimony by former acting Secretary of Defense, Chris Miller, this Wednesday matters. The national guard mystery is still the elephant in the room that’s still sitting in the corner in loud, deafening silence.

The House Oversight and Reform Committee has been looking for answers from federal intelligence agencies on Trump’s role in the Capitol insurrection since day one. They have knocked on pretty much any door they could think of, requesting information from sixteen offices in total. That brings us to Wednesday when the Committee will hear from Chris Miller, as well as Jeff Rosen, former acting Attorney General, and Robert Contee III, District of Columbia Police Chief, in a hearing titled “The Capitol Insurrection: Unexplained Delays and Unanswered Questions.”

Back in March, when Senate grilled Wray, the FBI director could not answer why the national guard was not sent in to quell the attack. Wray vaguely put the decision on local policy makers, conveniently circumventing federal responsibility.

Then months later, defense officials actually stated that the national guard was delayed for reasons of “optics” and worries over how it would look if Trump’s mob was pushed out forcefully, as they should’ve been. Miller dragged his feet for hours before giving the green light, as he wanted to imagine what exactly the national guard’s intervention will look like. The actual deployment took only 20 minutes, logistically speaking.

Miller has already spoken about Trump’s “cause and effect” words responsible for inciting the Capitol attacks. And some commentators like Sarah Burris at Raw Story already predict that Miller is about to throw Trump under the bus on Wednesday.

But that’s not enough. Where was Miller back then? The delay was his decision and no one else’s. The Congressmen and Congresswomen of the House Oversight and Reform Committee chaired by Congresswoman Carolyn Maloney, should not go easy on Miller only because now, after the fact, he is willing to speak up against Trump. Now it’s easy. Now it doesn’t count.

Trump removed Secretary of Defense Esper over his objection to sending the national guard on the Black Lives Matter movement that sparked up exactly one year ago. That’s why Trump replaced Esper with Miller. Miller could have also said no to Trump but he played along. That’s why Miller doesn’t get to play hero now. There are no heroes in the Trump Administration’s aftermath. Some “cause and effect” talk and hypocritical outrage after the fact don’t count. Now doesn’t count. The House Oversight and Reform Committee shouldn’t buy this. The time for cheap spins and late awakened conscience is up. Now is the time for real answers. Miller and Rosen should get a rough ride on Wednesday. Anything else would not be acceptable.

Continue Reading

Publications

Latest

Africa2 hours ago

Hydro-projects in Africa: Interview with Vladislav Vasilyev

As widely known, Russia plans to hold the second Russia-Africa summit in 2022, as a further step to make inroads...

Europe3 hours ago

Belgrade and Pristina: Will a territorial exchange really happen?

The European Union is dialing up pressure on Serbia and Kosovo in an effort to convince Belgrade and Pristina to...

Americas8 hours ago

Weakness or calculation? How the pandemic undermined the US world leadership

Anyone watching the numerous doomsday movies, happily churned out by Hollywood, will see American doctors saving the planet from space-borne...

Defense12 hours ago

Prospects for a Settlement of the Libyan Conflict: Three Scenarios of the Mid-Term Forecast

More than ten years ago, in February 2011, the Arab Spring began in Libya. The armed uprising quickly escalated into...

New Social Compact14 hours ago

Discerning the Human Element Amid the Pandemic

“We are not human beings having a spiritual experience. We are spiritual beings having a human experience.” – Pierre Teilhard de...

Arts & Culture16 hours ago

“Kharibulbul” festival represents a multi-ethnic, multi-confessional and multicultural Azerbaijan

As a country of multiculturalism, Azerbaijan promotes the cross-cultural dialogue inside the country, but also at the regional level. The...

Europe18 hours ago

A leaderless ship: The Bulgaria’s political crisis and the storm to come

Internal and international tensions Politics tends to develop in a complex conundrum in all Balkan countries. Thus, never can observers...

Trending