Focus Article Alert: September 2017

FOCUS Article Alert is a monthly collection of important documents in U.S.-Taiwan relations and other recent information from the U.S. about the environment, economy, arts, society, culture, and government.
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1. 美國在台協會處長梅健華「美國商機日」開幕致詞。
Remarks by AIT Director Kin Moy at U.S. Business Day Opening Ceremony.  

OT-1716, August 29, 2017, 2 pages.
“The U.S. Business Day, an annual event that helps us strengthen and expand the significant economic relationship between the United States and Taiwan.” (From AIT)

2. 美國在台協會處長梅健華 人道救援及災難防救國際研習營致詞。
Remarks by AIT Director Kin Moy at the GCTF Humanitarian Assistance and Disaster Relief Workshop.  

OT-1712, July 5, 2017, 2 pages.
“Given this tremendous capability, it makes perfect sense for the United States and Taiwan to partner together, with each of you here today, to bolster our ability to respond to disasters whenever and wherever they occur.” (From AIT)

3. 美國在台協會代理處長傅德恩 2017防制人口販運國際工作坊致詞講稿。
Remarks by AIT Acting Director Robert Forden at 2017 International Workshop on Strategies for Combating Human Trafficking.

OT-1714, July 25, 2017, 4 pages.
“Taiwan has become a model to the region and to the world in so many ways, and your proactive efforts to combat trafficking in persons and protect victims is another way in which Taiwan sets the global standard.  Many countries in the region now look to you as an example of how to improve their own efforts.  The United States is committed to working with Taiwan to enhance cooperation on anti-trafficking initiatives and to share Taiwan’s best practices with the rest of the region and the world.” (From AIT)

4. 美國在台協會主席莫健 戰略暨國際研究中心演講 。
Remarks by AIT Chairman James Moriarty at Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS). 

OT-1713, July 21, 2017, 6 pages.
“The United States and Taiwan have built a comprehensive, durable, and mutually beneficial partnership, grounded in our shared interests and values.  We maintain close economic, security, and people-to-people ties, and share a mutual respect for democracy and human rights.” (From AIT)

5. 國際宗教自由報告: 2016年台灣部分。
International Religious Freedom Report for 2016: Taiwan Part.

OT-1715, August 16, 2017, 5 pages.
“The constitution provides for freedom of religious belief. Domestic service workers and caretakers are not covered under the labor standards law and are therefore not legally guaranteed a weekly rest day. Due to this exclusion, many domestic workers were not able to attend religious services.” (From AIT)

6. Mattis, Jim and Rex Tillerson.
We’re Holding Pyongyang to Account.

The White House, August 14, 2017, 3 pages.
“In response, the Trump administration, with the support of the international community, is applying diplomatic and economic pressure on North Korea to achieve the complete, verifiable and irreversible denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula and a dismantling of the regime’s ballistic-missile programs. We are replacing the failed policy of ‘strategic patience,’ which expedited the North Korean threat, with a new policy of strategic accountability.” (From the White House)

7. Alterman, Jon B.
Russia, the United States, and the Middle East. 

Center for Strategic and International Studies, July 21, 2017, 2 pages.
“For decades, U.S. strategy in the Middle East has been intended to create more resilient societies—first to foster societies strong enough to reject communism, and more recently to foster societies strong enough to reject terrorism. Broad economic opportunities, open markets, and inclusive politics are all intended to feed into that goal. Russia, however, seems to see the economic focus as a way to exclude Russia, and the political focus as dangerous and naive.” (From the Center for Strategic and International Studies)

8. Fishman, Edward and others.
A Blueprint for New Sanctions on North Korea. (PDF, 230KB)

Center for a New American Security, July 27, 2017, 16 pages.
“This report offers policymakers an analysis of the situation, an assessment of the successes and failures of sanctions imposed to date, and options for increasing Pyongyang’s economic isolation. With enhanced economic leverage, the United States will be better placed to address North Korea’s destabilizing influence and lay the table for potential nuclear diplomacy.”(From the Center for a New American Security)

9. Kaine, Tim.
A New Truman Doctrine: Grand Strategy in a Hyperconnected World.   (PDF, 327 KB)

Foreign Affairs, Jul/Aug 2017 Issues, 13 pages.
“The country, and the world, needs a new, twenty-first century version of the Truman Doctrine: a sustained U.S. national security strategy that is proactive rather than reactive and sets a course for this administration and those that follow it. At a time when countries such as Russia are attempting to subvert other nations’ democratic institutions, the world needs a reinvigorated campaign to peacefully and forcefully promote the virtues of democracy over authoritarianism or extremism. The United States is best suited to lead that campaign, and failure to do so will hurt both the United States and people around the world.”(From the Foreign Affairs)

10.   O’Rourke, Ronald and Michael Moodie.
U.S. Role in the World: Background and Issues for Congress.  (PDF, 325 KB)

Washington, D.C.: Congressional Research Service, July 12, 2017, 57 pages.
“This report presents background information and issues for Congress on the overarching U.S. foreign policy issue of the U.S. role in the world. Certain statements and actions from the Trump Administration have led to uncertainty about the Administration’s intentions regarding the future U.S. role, and have intensified an ongoing debate among foreign policy specialists, strategists, policymakers, and the public about what that role should be. Decisions that Congress makes about the U.S. role could have substantial or even profound implications for U.S. foreign policy, national security, and international economic policy, for Congress as an institution, and for many federal policies and programs.” (From the CRS Report)

11.  Meyer, Bruce D. and James X. Sullivan.
Consumption and Income Inequality in the US since the 1960s.  (PDF, 2378 KB)

National Bureau of Economic Research, August 2017, 72 pages.
“This paper examines income inequality between 1963 and 2014 using the Current Population Survey and consumption inequality between 1960 and 2014 using the Consumer Expenditure Survey.” (From the National Bureau of Economic Research)

12.   Schanzenbach, Diane Whitmore and others.
The Closing of the Jobs Gap: A Decade of Recession and Recovery.  (PDF, 270 KB)

Brookings, August 4, 2017, 13 pages.
“In order to accurately track the progress of the labor market recovery, The Hamilton Project developed a measure of labor market health—the “jobs gap”—that reflects changes in both the level and the demographic composition of the U.S. population Beginning in May of 2010, The Hamilton Project has calculated the number of jobs needed to return to the national employment rate prior to the Great Recession, accounting for population growth and aging.”(From the Bookings)

13.  Hathi, Sejal and Bob Kocher.
The Right Way to Reform Health Care: To Cut Costs, Empower Patients.  

Foreign Affairs, Jul/Aug 2017, 10 pages.
“How can the Trump administration address the very real flaws of the U.S. health-care system, improving care without taking coverage away? The answer is to fix Obamacare rather than replace it. To accomplish this, policymakers must target the underlying problem afflicting health care in the United States: it costs far too much. Not only does the country spend much more on health care than its peers-18 percent of GDP in 2016- but that investment has failed to translate into better outcomes.” (From Foreign Affairs)

14.  Poushter, Jacob and Dorothy Manevich.
Globally, People Point to ISIS and Climate Change as Leading Security Threats.  (PDF, 780 KB)

Pew Research Center, August 1, 2017, 32 pages.
“People around the globe identify ISIS and climate change as the leading threats to national security, according to a new Pew Research Center survey. The survey asked about eight possible threats. While the level and focus of concern varies by region and country, ISIS and climate change clearly emerge as the most frequently cited security risks across the 38 countries polled.” (From the Pew Research Center)

15. Victor, David G and Kassia Yanosek.
The Next Energy Revolution: The Promise and Peril of High-Tech Innovation.  

Foreign Affairs, Jul/Aug 2017, 7 pages.
“A new electricity industry is emerging-one that is more decentralized and consumer-friendly, and able to integrate many different sources of power into highly reliable power grids. In the coming years, these trends are likely to keep energy cheap and plentiful, responsive to market conditions, and more efficient than ever. But this transition will not be straightforward. It could destabilize countries whose economies depend on revenue from traditional energy sources and hurt lower-skilled workers. And cheap fossil fuels will make it harder to achieve the deep cuts in emissions needed to halt global warming.” (From Foreign Affairs)

16.  Global Cities 2017: Global Cities 2017: Leaders in a World of Disruptive Innovation. 

A.T. Kearney, August 02, 2017, 14 pages.
“The report takes a look at the world’s most influential cities as well as those that are likely to become more important on the global stage.”(From A.T. Kearney)

17.  Castro, Daniel and others.
The Best States for Data Innovation. 

Information Technology & Innovation Foundation, July 31, 2017, 85 pages.
“This report reviews a series of indicators that rank states on the degree to which they have achieved the key enablers of success in the data economy, including the availability of high-value datasets, the creation of important technologies, and the development of human and business capital. It then identifies a range of opportunities for state governments to maximize their potential for data-driven growth and progress.” (From the Information Technology & Innovation Foundation)

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