Beyond the Bricks
by Dominique Hessert | published Apr. 22nd, 2014
China’s Actions Delay Malaysian Jet Search
China was quickly labeled a hero when their Haixun 01 vessel reported a detection of underwater signals in April that looked like they came from the missing Malaysian plane.
According to Fox News, an Australian ship discounted China’s findings when it picked up a similar signal 300 nautical miles away from the location China determined. Countries involved in the investigation have expressed irritation with China because their announcement delayed the search.
This was not the first time Chinese vessels have reported findings that were later discounted. Early on in the investigation China showed satellite photographs that pictured wreckage in the South China Sea. These photos turned out to be unassociated debris.
The Malaysia Airlines Flight 370 consisted of mostly Chinese passengers, so the search is a prime concern of China’s. According to the New York Times, Beijing has “deployed reconnaissance aircraft, more than a dozen vessels and 21 satellites in the search.” The majority of the ships currently searching in the Southern Indian Ocean are Chinese.
“This is a chance for China to regain some of its lost prestige and show the world what it’s capable of,” said Jeff Kingston, director of Asian studies at Temple University of Tokyo.
There are regional competitors of China who are not thrilled with the expansion of China’s military across a larger part of the globe for the search, and after China’s mistakes delaying this search, tensions have risen.
ObamaCare Premiums are Rising
This past quarter showed an increase average of 12 percent in ObamaCare premiums across the United States. Morgan Stanley has been distributing a survey collecting this information for the past five years, but this is the highest premiums have been since the start of the survey.
According to Fox News, a 12 percent increase is the average, but the rates in certain states are significantly higher. Scott Gottlieb of the American Enterprise Institute, stated that Delaware experienced a 100 percent increase, Florida a 37 percent increase, Pennsylvania a 28 percent increase and California a 53 percent increase. The rates of increase in premiums depend on the state and how regulated it was before ObamaCare.
Despite these increases, the New York Times reported that the insurance is expected to reduce the number of those without insurance from 42 million to 30 million by 2017. Rising premium costs have contributed to decreasing the amount that expanding the insurance would cost. “The insurance expansion under the Affordable Care Act will cost $1.383 trillion over the next decade. This is over $100 billion less than previous forecasts,” according to the Congressional Budget Office.
According to John Goodman of National Center for Policy Analysis, John Divito of Flexible Benefit Service Corporation, and Marc Bertolini , CEO of Aetna, premium rates for 2015 are expected to be anywhere from 10 percent to 50 percent higher than what they currently are.
Unrest in East Ukraine
On April 14, the danger in Kiev, Ukraine became more frightening when the United Nations failed to fulfill Ukraine’s President Oleksandr Turchynov’s plea to send peace keepers.
According to the New York Times, Turchynov has declared an anti-terrorist operation against pro-Russian separatists. In the east it succeeded without any intervention from military police. Hours later, however, Russian activists overran another building in the Donetsk region.
The New York Times reported that Ukraine is lacking in funds, to the point where a billionaire of Ukraine bought their military fuel. Alfa, the best special forces unit of Ukraine, is also struggling with responding to the war in the east.
The Ukraine government’s inability to take control of the eastern towns has caused uprisings. BBC News reported that Ukrainian protesters rallied outside parliament in Kiev, requesting action against pro-Russian separatists.