Caracal Business Insider | November 21, 2017

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Mugabe, Merkel, Merger, Mandalay Bay, Manchester City

Caracal Business Insider | Daily
November 21, 2017
Curation and commentary from Marc A. Ross

Caracal Business Insider: Politics + Policy + Profits

Reporting from Alexandria, Virginia


Behind Mugabe’s rapid fall - a firing, a feud, and a first lady: NYT reports, the rapid fall of Zimbabwe’s president, whose legendary guile and ruthlessness helped him outmaneuver countless adversaries over nearly four decades, probably has surprised no one more than Robert Mugabe himself. 

ARA San Juan: The US Navy has joined the international search effort for an Argentine submarine and its 44 crew members missing for several days beneath the stormy southern Atlantic Ocean.

Chilean markets are tumbling: Bloomberg reports, Chilean stocks posted their worst rout in six years and the peso tumbled after surprise election results dashed expectations billionaire Sebastian Pinera would easily win next month’s presidential run-off.

North Korea sponsoring terror: FT reports, Trump has added North Korea back to a list of “state sponsors of terror” after almost a decade. Trump added that the US Treasury will impose more sanctions on Pyongyang. 

Russian nuclear facility denies it is the source of high radioactivity levels: Guardian reports, Greenpeace calls for investigation after levels of ruthenium-106 in the atmosphere near Urals site found to be 986 times norm.

Putin enjoys an 82% approval rating and no serious challengers for Russia's March 2018 election.

Germany may hold new elections: Bloomberg reports, Chancellor Angela Merkel said she’d rather face a fresh vote than govern without a majority, betting that voters won’t blame her after talks on forming a coalition collapsed. “A minority government isn’t part of my plans,” she said on Monday.

“A minority government isn’t part of my plans,” Merkel said Mondayin comments to broadcaster ARD. “I’m certain that new elections are the better way.”

German turmoil threatens Europe: WSJ reports, the prospects for overhauling the European Union and its currency, the euro, have hit further trouble as Germany grapples with newfound political instability and its lead.

“At a time when the European Union is facing a host of pressing problems, from Brexit negotiations with Britain, to the rise of right-wing populism, to separatism in Spain’s Catalonia region, the possibility of political instability in a normally reliable Germany sent tremors through the Continent.”

Gerry Adams has announced he is quitting as Sinn Fein president after for 34 years.

Post-Brexit moves: FT reports, Paris and Amsterdam have been chosen as the new homes for two prized EU agencies, both currently headquartered in London and home to a combined staff of 1,000.


WSJ: US throws out playbook on China trade

"Cheered on at home, Robert Lighthizer readies a sledge-hammer of punitive measures"

China hawk Lighthizer increasingly influential in White House: Axios reports, Trump's hardline trade negotiator Robert Lighthizer is wielding extraordinary — and growing — influence inside the White House. Trump has huge respect for Lighthizer. He likes that he will take on his colleagues and doesn't back down, even in front of Trump. He's increasingly winning internal arguments over the administration's inevitable economic confrontation with China.

US rebuffs China’s charm offensive, edging closer to trade war: WSJ reports, US looks at sanctions with the goal of fundamentally challenging Chinese trade practices.

WP: Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen will leave board when successor is sworn in

Somalia: The number of US military forces in Somalia has more than doubled this year to over 500 people.

Antitrust: The DOJ will sue to block AT&T Inc.'s $85.4 billion merger with Time Warner Inc.

WSJ: FCC to outline plan to roll back rules on net neutrality

The US flooded one of Houston’s richest neighborhoods to save everyone else: Bloomberg reports, the Army Corps of Engineers sent water cascading into West Houston’s Energy Corridor to avoid a catastrophic reservoir failure during Hurricane Harvey. Now a web of lawsuits could change how the government handles extreme weather.


Uber signs a non-binding deal with Volvo to purchase up to 24,000 cars equipped with autonomous technology.

Caixin: Chasing rivals, Lamborghini’s new SUV peels out in China

Tencent becomes the first China-based firm valued at more than $500 billion.

The Washington Post is a software company now: Fast Company reports, the newspaper created a platform to tackle its own challenges. Then, with Amazon-like spirit, it realized there was a business in helping other publishers do the same.

Starbucks is being criticized for its holiday cups - again. But why isn't anyone being critical of the crowded experience, sub-optimal customer service, the lame coffee, the poor food choices, etc?

Apple’s iPhone X assembled by illegal student labor: FT reports, interns say they were ‘forced’ to work at Foxconn plant in China in order to graduate.

LAT: Mandalay Bay and concert promoter sued by hundreds of Las Vegas massacre survivors

WeSoul: SoulCycle founder Julie Rice was named the chief brand officer of WeWork.


The downside of social media: MediaREDEF reports, Facebook, Google, Twitter and other major platforms helped us to connect, entertain and learn. The benefits have been obvious. But now, so are the dangers. Engagement and revenue over well-being? Are we addicted? Election influence. Fake news. Bullying bots. Treating users like Pavlovian dogs. Do we understand the effects? Do the platforms' founders?


“All my big mistakes are when I try to second-guess or please an audience. My work is always stronger when I get very selfish about it.” - David Bowie


Champions League today:

All matches at 2:45 pm ET

APOEL vs Real Madrid
Borussia Dortmund vs Tottenham Hotspur
Sevilla vs Liverpool
Napoli vs Shakhtar Donetsk
Manchester City vs Feyenoord

Marc Ross

Based in Washington, DC, I specialize in thought leader communications and global public policy for public affairs professionals working at the intersection of globalization, disruption, and politics.

Clients hire me to ghostwrite, engage influencer networks, manage media relations, produce events, audit their communications infrastructure, consult on hiring, provide issue briefs and news generating talking points, as well as manage end to end communications projects where I assume a role of project leader and general contractor.

I work independently but provided access to a substantial global network of collaborators with expertise in websites, graphic design, audio, video, polling, data analytics, and research.

Using the latest tactics of an American political campaign with expertise shaped by being a practitioner of global business communications, I help clients tell their story and build trusted relationships with all necessary stakeholders.

Successful communications are all about STOCK = strategy, tactics, organization, consistency, and know-how.