Richard Fisher: ‘Horrifically bad’ education system biggest economic threat

Richard Fisher says America's "horrifically bad" primary and secondary education system is the biggest long-term threat to the U.S. economy – especially as other countries like China put an emphasis on education.
Economy

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NASA deep space probe reaches asteroid deemed potential Earth threat

NASA’s deep space explorer Osiris-Rex flew on Monday to within a dozen miles of its destination, a skyscraper-sized asteroid believed to hold organic compounds fundamental to life as well as the potential to collide with Earth in about 150 years. 


Reuters: Science News

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Migrants are not a threat to health systems, report finds


CNN.com – RSS Channel – Health

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Congress returns to familiar threat: Trump’s demand for wall money or shutdown

Democrats are emboldened by the midterm elections, as their expected House majority continues to grow to a dozen seats or more. That has them ready to resist the president.
Politics

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Threat of a looming ban on menthol cigarettes weighs on tobacco stocks

FDA Commissioner Dr. Scott Gottlieb plans to announce this week the agency will move forward with a ban on menthol cigarettes, senior FDA officials told CNBC last week. 
Health and Science

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Despite rhetoric, illness threat from migrants is minimal, experts say

The Trump administration is painting the group of migrants from Central America as a threat to national security and some conservative commentators now claim that the immigrants are a threat to American’s health, but in reality experts say the people whose health is most at risk are the migrants themselves, but the risk is temporary.


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These Countries Pose the Biggest Threat to U.S. National Security, Says Kissinger Associates CEO

Since the Cold War ended, U.S. national security has focused on issues like terrorism and climate change rather than conflict with other countries, says Jami Miscik, CEO of geopolitical consulting firm Kissinger Associates.

But she said that trend is now reversing, with Russia and China returning to the lead the list of national security risks. Of course, Russia is alleged to have interfered in the 2016 U.S. presidential campaign while China and the U.S. are engaged in a trade war that is expected to intensify.

Miscik, speaking at Fortune’s Most Powerful Women Summit on Wednesday in Laguna Niguel, Calif., also named Brazil as a potential hot spot because of its upcoming elections that could put a more extreme far-right government in power. Meanwhile, in Iran, more extreme leaders may be coming into power because the economic prosperity promised by moderate politicians after the U.S.-Iran Nuclear Deal failed to materialize.

“I don’t think [Western] companies ran in there the way moderates in Iran hoped they would,” Miscik said. “Domestically, the moderates have declined in popularity.”

When it comes to China, she expects that President Donald Trump’s trade war will worsen relations. The longtime safeguard against conflict between the U.S. and China–their financial interdependence–is no longer enough.

“I think the tensions are here. I think they’re likely to grow,” she said before adding: “What we really are interdependent on is trade. If we take that off the table, with sanctions or tariffs, we start to remove the one thing that links us together.”

When asked to assess President Trump on foreign relations, Miscik praised his decision to pull the U.S. out of the Trans-Pacific Partnership and his renegotiation of NAFTA. But in general, she criticized his approach toward America’s allies.

“I do not give him a high grade on making our allies feel comfortable that we will be there for them,” Miscik said.

Miscik said that financial prowess is what allows the U.S. to wield global power. Most transactions come through the American economy at some point, which gives the U.S. government jurisdiction to enforce measures like sanctions on other countries.

“We have economic exceptionalism in our control of the national financial system,” she said, but countries are beginning to explore alternative payment methods in order to avoid the U.S. entirely, which could dilute America’s international influence.

Despite the increased risks from individual nations, functional issues remain a significant threat, from terrorism and rising nationalism to nuclear proliferation, populism, and authoritarianism.

“Climate change has officially become a national security issue,” Miscik said, based on the huge number of Americans living in coastal areas that are in danger of flooding if water levels rise.

She also warned about cybersecurity threats and the new types of attacks that U.S. organizations may need to be prepared to face.

“The one I’m worried about now, especially for businesses, is an attack that manipulates the data,” she said–a tactic that could be used to undermine confidence in American institutions and financial systems.

Fortune

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