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A Stock Surges On Disney Takeover Rumors Over The World

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Price hikes were at the top of the latest “fear rating” released by the Russian state-run pollster VTSIOM.

The latest research, conducted in late June and based on a poll in which respondents were asked to estimate the perceived probability of unpleasant events in their lives, showed the level of psychological tension in Russian society had increased.

Specifically, the level of anxiety connected with the most widespread fears surpassed similar parameters registered one and two years ago.

A short summary of the results, published on the VTSIOM website on Monday, says that the fears connected with inflation and possible depreciation of savings remain the most intense and widespread among Russians – the index for this category increased to 27 points from 23 points in just one month.

Fears of military conflict ranked second with 20 points, an increase from 19 percent in May.

Concerns over health problems and various difficulties connected with access to healthcare were in third place with 8 points, up from 0 points in January.

Fears over the possibility of internal conflict and unrest peaked in April this year, when the index reached 6 points (from -5 points at the beginning of the year).

Researchers noted that the pattern repeated with the index that registered Russians’ fear of crime – it jumped from 1 point in January to 7 points in April, but dropped to 3 points in June.

The perceived risks of a decrease in personal income and loss of employment also increased in June when compared to the start of 2017, from -11 to -3 and from -24 to -18 respectively.

Fears of family problems were in last place in the rating, and June’s index of -47 points was below the value of 2015 and 2016.

The fear index is indicated by asking respondents to assess the probability of certain events for them personally on a scale from -100 to 100 (from ‘impossible’ to ‘bound to happen’).

VTSIOM researcher Oleg Chernozub noted in comments that the research had demonstrated that the previously recorded general optimism and hopes for a prompt end to economic problems were dwindling.

Despite this growing anxiety, a different poll conducted by the independent public opinion research center Levada in June this year showed that 70 percent of Russians currently want the nation’s political and economic course to remain unchanged, while only 19 percent want the authorities to reach a compromise with Western nations, even if this requires some tradeoffs. The rest remain undecided.

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Playing The China Card in the U.S. Presidential Election?

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Dr. Robert Lawrence Kuhn is a CGTN anchor, public intellectual, international corporate strategist, investment banker, and recipient of China Reform Friendship Medal. The article reflects the author’s opinions

I’m Robert Lawrence Kuhn and here’s what I’m watching: Playing the “China card” in the U.S. presidential election campaign. “China card”? In this election, it’s more like playing a whole “deck” of China cards.

The contest between President Trump and his presumptive Democratic opponent, Joe Biden, will be a slug-out brawl. Who can best bash China will be the winner, they believe, the tough-guy champion. Each will accuse the other of being “soft on China” – the ultimate insult. Democrats will attack Trump for his “weak” phase one trade deal and for his initial praise of China in containing the coronavirus. Republicans will attack Biden for his past engagements with China and for his son’s alleged financial dealings.

Specific policies – trade, technology, human rights, South China Sea – will not be debated much. Rather, each side will use generalized hyperbole to try to convince public opinion that their man is tougher on China.

Politicians follow polls – even though they say they don’t, they do. A Pew poll in March found two-thirds (66 percent) of U.S. adults with a negative view of China, the highest unfavorable ever. There is a vicious cycle between political pronouncements and public opinion about China, each reinforcing the other in a race to the bottom.

Is all this negativity furthering long-term American interests? Of course not. But then neither is the anti-American vicious cycle between Chinese officials and Chinese social media furthering Chinese interests. Notwithstanding real issues on both sides, simplistic bias and one-dimensional stereotyping, on both sides, is a recipe for confrontation, not cooperation.

For decades, the “China card” has been played in American elections. It was “who lost China?” in the 1950s. In the 1992 presidential campaign, after three hard years in Sino-American relations, Bill Clinton took a hard line on China to attack his opponent, George H.W. Bush. However, once in office, Clinton sought better relations with China.

From then on, Chinese leaders recognized that they should not take how China is bandied about in American elections too seriously, but simply seek to work with the winner, whoever it will be, in a business-as-usual manner. One hopes it will be the same this cycle, though one worries, it will not.

When playing the China card in the coming campaign, accusations against China will be made – alleged unfair economics, job loss, intellectual property theft, cybertheft, human rights violations, militarism, aggressive foreign policy, the pandemic, of course. But none, I suggest, is the deep reason.

The deep reason is “nationalism,” which features in leadership cycles in all societies and all social systems. Nationalism is rooted in biological evolution, where early human allegiance to the group, the tribe, increased fitness for survival and procreation in the development of our species. Human beings have confirmed over and over again that they will bear any hardship, endure any pain, to protect the sanctity and pride of the group, which today is usually the nation-state.

I am always amazed how intelligent folk can so easily see the counter productivity of misguided nationalism when viewing dispassionately the behaviors of others, while they are so easily blinded in not discerning the same misguided nationalism in their own, similar passions.

After the U.S. election is over, a window of opportunity shall open for China and the U.S. to reset relations. The window will be narrower than normal, and the differences will be wider. Still, I have hope. I’m keeping watch. I’m Robert Lawrence Kuhn

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Two Killed, Seven Injured In Ogun Highway Accident

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Two persons have been killed in a multiple-car crash at the Ota axis of the Lagos-Abeokuta expressway in Ogun State.

The Public Education Officer of the Federal Road Safety Corps (FRSC) in Ogun, Florence Okpe, confirmed this in a statement on Friday.

She explained that the incident, which left a man and a woman dead, occurred at about 11:30am at the Toll Gate area of the highway.

According to the FRSC official, seven other people comprising two women and five men were injured in the crash.

She added that the accident involved a truck and three other vehicles, as well as two motorcycles.

Okpe noted that the incident was suspected to have occurred as a result of brake failure while the injured victims were taken to the Ota General Hospital.

She said the remains of the dead persons have also been deposited at the General Hospital in Ifo.

On his part, the FRSC Sector Commander in Ogun, Clement Oladele, commiserated with the victims and families of the dead persons.

He urged the residents whose relation used the corridor that period to contact the FRSC Command in Ota for more information about the crash or the two hospitals.

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Breaking: Stop Blaming Us, China Slams US

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China criticised the US on Thursday for “disharmonious, untruthful and insincere remarks”, after President Donald Trump took aim again at Beijing’s handling of the coronavirus outbreak.

“We urge the US side to stop shifting the blame to China and turn to facts,” said foreign ministry spokeswoman Hua Chunying at a press briefing, after Trump said the disease could have been stopped in China.

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