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...of these defining times
A French Fix to Ending Violent Protests
The Need for Stability in France
A US Complaint, a Canadian Arrest - the Uncertainty of China's Meng Wanzhou
Farewell President George H.W. Bush

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...of these defining times

Forty-years since the opening up of China to western cooperation and partnership, humanity has advanced at leaps and bounds. 

Not solely in China, but transcending the entire globe, millions of people have been lifted out of poverty. Technology and all of its systems from cell phones to the Internet, are today, a norm in every community. Many more people are living longer, earning more and enjoying a better standard of living than at four-decades-ago. 

Yet, the reality of our times - these defining times of the latter-days of 2018, has become mired in uncertainty.

A French Fix to Ending Violent Protests

Aware of the power-ending likelihood of France's history of a mixture of labor and student protests, French President Emmanuel Macron, yesterday, unfolded a fresh set of reforms seeking to end four-consecutive weekends of violent protests. 

To appease the "yellow vest" protesters, the French government not only scrapped a pending fuel tax which was the ignition of recent protests, but it went farther to announce a minimum wage increase of about 100 Euros a month or of 7%, starting in 2019.

The Need for Stability in France

Four consecutive weekends of violent destabilizing 'yellow vests' protests will inevitably take a negative toll on the economy of France. Forced to close many of its iconic places of interest and major tourist sites, including the Eiffel Tower, France has been impacted by protests over a proposed, then suspended and now scrapped fuel tax. 

Taxes of 6.9 cents on diesel and 2.9 cents on petrol were slated for January, 2019. However, the French government cancelled the taxes amid continuous protests.

A US Complaint, a Canadian Arrest - the Uncertainty of China's Meng Wanzhou

Canada, acting upon a complaint from the United States (US), arrested Chinese tech giant, Huawei's Chief Financial Officer, Meng Wanzhou, last Saturday, and has held the 46-year-old woman in custody ever since pending a bail hearing before the Vancouver, British Columbia courts today.

Meng's arrest spreads uncertainty about any immediate and positive outcome to a trade war the US started with China. Huawei is a behemoth Chinese company that sells more cell phones than American company Apple.

Farewell President George H.W. Bush

The State Funeral for the 41st President of the United States (US) George H. W. Bush, who died at age-94, November 30, 2018, has concluded at the National Cathedral, here in Washington, DC. With a heavy heart and with great respect, I bid farewell to a decent and kind family man, who served our Republic honorable.

More so today than at the time he served in the Oval Office, 1989-1992, the decency and civil decorum of our 41st President is very self-evident. 

I never met George H. W. Bush, but one incident that occurred during his hotly contested run for the White House in 1988 and another incident, in 1990, after he won the White House, have both impacted and shaped my life today.

Suspension of Fuel Tax Increases in France - a Move to Ending Violence

Often governments underestimate the consciousness of the people - the small people, the working people, the binders of communities. Emmanuel Macron's government in France is guilty of such a blunder, hence subjecting France to weekends of protests and unfortunate violence. But the French government has now taken a first-step to remedy the fears and concerns of its people by suspending proposed fuel tax increases that were coming on January 01, 2019.

Macron and his government were swept into power in May, 2017, upon promises of reforms.

A Stark Warning on the Environment

Famed biology writer and science documentary filmmaker, David Attenborough, has issued a stark warning on behalf of the world's people to world leaders at the COP24 conference in Katowice, Poland: "...If we don't take action (on Climate Change) the collapse of our civilizations and the extinction of much of the natural world is on the horizon."

The United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) is underway in Poland from today until December 14. It is the 24th Conference of Parties (COP24) meeting to negotiate how to tackle Climate Change and how to implement the goal of limiting global warming to less than 2 degrees F a-year.

Happy 52nd Anniversary of Independence Barbados

Today, November 30, 2018, is the 52nd anniversary of independence of my birth land, Barbados. 

Congratulations to Prime Minister Mia Mottley and to all the people of Barbados both on the island and abroad. A special congratulation also to the new Ambassador, Noel Lynch - welcome to Washington, DC, Mr. Ambassador, may you serve the people well.

The sovereignty of Barbados has always been a special attribute to the industry of its people and a fact of enduring Barbadian pride ever since the first Prime Minister and father of Barbados Independence, Errol Barrow secured nationhood back in 1966 from Great Britain.

Humanity's Needs

Humanity's obvious needs are the secure and the happy continuity of the human species. These needs are not insurmountable: they are attainable, thus humanity is tasked with finding the multilateral cooperation, mechanisms and systems to achieving these goals.

Therefore, with regards to conflicts, agitations, trade wars, actions of division and the failing environment, it becomes imperative that a balance be found to ensuring the harmonious and secure development of the human species.

But this balance will not be found until past wrongs are made right, desires stated and the general welfare of all the people sustained.

Not the Prediction - What Matters is the Apparent Russian Impunity

A headline on CNN's website dated today, at 10:02 a.m., an analysis by Nick Paton regarding the Ukraine-Russia debacle read: " No one can predict what Russia will do next." The writer suggested: "The fact that nobody really knows what's going to happen next in Ukraine is the entire point. It is the core of Russia's strategy."

While Nick Paton pens a fitting analysis, I however, counter with the submission that it is not the prediction of Russian action that matters, but the apparent impunity of Russia to any severe punishment for meddling in many lands and for its continuous actions against Ukraine.