Who Cares About International Relations?

May 8, 2007

5 top posts

Filed under: Uncategorized — youayang09 @ 4:48 am

Blog Title: UK questions EU (Click Here)

Description: Here I briefly summarize an article on BBC news, and gave my own view on why the EU was questioned. I went over why this NGO is having a hard time trying to unite Europe and help the “European Citizen.” I also responded back to the many comments left by other bloggers. (click here)

Blong Title: The EU anti-turst policies on Apple (Click Here)

Description: Here I briefly summarize an article on USA today, and gave my view on the EU protectionist policies in trying to protect its local business. This goes into internation trading which has to deal with politics as well. I also responded back to the comments I recieved. (Click here)

Blog Title: The French Do (Click Here)

Description: Here I briefly summarize what French President Jacques Chirac said about weapons in Iran. I also went into the issue of Nuclear proliferation and gave my insight on that issue. I recieved a comment by another blogger on why Nuclear Proliferation was good and to respond I posted another blog on why it was bad. (Click Here)

Blog Title: Globalize US EU! (Click Here)

Description: Here I briefly summarize an article on BBC news on an agreement made by the US and EU. I gave both the benefits and costs of this agreement. After it was released on the class blog, I also responded to a comment that was made on the blog. (Click Here)

Blog Title: United Through Resource Depletion (Click Here)

Description: Here I gave my analysis of how the EU and Russia were globalized by the “oil crisis” and how a oil exporter nation is able to have significant influence over importing nations. I also provided my insight from differing views, both the realist and liberal view.

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May 3, 2007

Globolize US EU!

Filed under: Uncategorized — youayang09 @ 12:27 am

With the world becoming more a more interdependent, the EU and US have agreed upon signing agreements that would connect the two economies. (Click Here to view article) The agreement was sign to boost air traffic as well as lower air fares. There has been agreements on creating a economic council to over see this agreement which also includes intellectual property, financial services, business takeovers, and the motor industry. The overall aim of this agreement is of course to increase trade but lower the cost of doing so. Another aim is to come to agreements on the changing climate do to human activity. Though the US rejects the EU’s proposition on imposing national emission limits which could cause negative effects on the international economy, the EU does have high hopes that with his agreement there will be a step closer towards emission regulation.  This Open Skies agreement will open up US airports to all EU carriers and vice-versa. It will take effect on March 30, 2008. Another agreement, the Open Aviation, has been proposed which would guarantee the movement of investments between EU and US airlines, in which it will allow services without any restrictions.

From a liberal’s point of view this couldn’t have been better! Free trade and cooperation in tackling the climate changing problem shows how the world will unite and every benefiting from absolute gains.  By having this agreement, the two economies are connected to one another even greater and promotes higher economic growth as the market for airlines will be able to have transaction was greater ease. But there can be some problem with this as we can see that if two economies are connected when one falls the other also falls. Because the EU and US are connected, it opens to the EU the ability to exploit the airline business and infringe upon local businesses in the US.  Although the Open Aviation agreement hasn’t been passed, since foreign businesses have can greatly affect those domestic business, by giving the EU the ability, domestic airlines will be forced to compete internationally. Though globalization is good, if we look at it from a realist point of view things can go wrong.

April 28, 2007

UK questions EU

Filed under: Uncategorized — youayang09 @ 5:20 am

Tony Blair announces his desire to have a less “abstract” EU and have one that focus more on the needs of European citizens. ( Click Here) Even though Tony Blair will soon retire, his announcements have been backed by the Dutch Prime Minister Jan Peter Balkenend. He states that the EU has been focusing too much constitutional debate. This constitution which was already rejected by two countries in 2005, and only 16 of the 27 members states fully adopting them. But with out the full 27 countries adopting the constitution it cannot have any authority.

When reading this article on the EU and its members states (Britain) questioning its authority and decision, it shows how sometimes cooperation does not work. But this is not so much an argument of relative gains but of inefficiency as the EU wants to first establish itself permanently with a “European Constitution” in which is hard to do. This is because if states were to adopt such constitution they would have to give up some of their sovereignty and power within their own states. What Britain wants for for the EU to not focus so much on the constitution but to focus on making the European citizens trust the EU and believe in it, as seen when it battle the “bread-and-butter” issues. By having the peoples trust and showing the benefits to being united under the EU, there will be more successes for decisions. Since the constitution brings about too many controversial issues, it only shows the problems of the EU thus far, and so when Britain addressed this, they wanted things to change for the better of the EU but more so for the better of Europe.

April 26, 2007

Piracy vs EU

Filed under: Uncategorized — youayang09 @ 6:13 am

When was the last time you “shared” music? What about movies? Today, April  25, the EU has adopted criminal sanctions on “infringing intellectual property rights” such as copying dvds and selling them. ( read article) Anyone caught would either pay the fine of 300,000 euros ($407,000) or be imprison for 4 years.

By having this regional IGO being able to conduct such policies it shows how the states are able to put trust in it and depend the EU in making the right decisions. Similar to the Congress in the United States, there are representatives from every state that come together to have discussions and make decisions.

And talks continue…

Filed under: Uncategorized — youayang09 @ 5:56 am

As accusations continue and deadlock seems to be the only path towards any agreements. Teheran argues that the nuclear enrichment program is solely for the use of civilian energy and not for any raw nuclear materials usable for weapons. (click here) Over a indian meal the EU foreign policy chief Javier Solana and Iran’s chief nuclear negotiator Ali Larijani try to come to an agreement over how to resolve the issue. SO far Iran has already been put on economic sanctions and if no agreement comes, a third set of sanctions will be imposed. 

When reading this, it shows exactly how international policies can become very controversial with very few agreements as it goes to the issue of degrading a state’s sovereignty. With the EU and the US pressuring Iran to stop doing what it wants to do, tensions continue to grow. Since the enrichment programs and its goals aren’t fully known to outsiders and because nuclear material can be both good and evil, the user’s motives must be trusted. Since Iran is said to have support terrorist financially, if not directly, views from abroad tends to be pessimistic.

April 25, 2007

EU vs Apple now EU vs Microsoft…

Filed under: Uncategorized — youayang09 @ 3:52 am

In recent news, there were the anti-trust policies that were put on Apple’s Itunes for violating competition in Europe. The big debate was whether or not the EU has the rights to do so and did Itunes really violate them. Now a similar case has erupted again but with a similar violator, Apple’s competitor Window’s Microsoft. ( Read Aritcle) The EU Commission states that “it set unreasonably high prices to discourage would-be competitors from making server software.” Microsoft responds with that it will charge for interoperability information because the software is based on its own innovative work and was protected by its patents.  In march 2004 the EU already imposed a 497 million euro ($674 million) fine on Microsoft to make it change its ways, now again the EU plans to impose another new fine.

When reading this article, I couldn’t help but wonder, ” Is the EU really trying to promote competition or is it just trying to protect local companies?” By having fines imposed on foreign companies ( both from US) that already compete with one another, it makes it seem as though the EU just wants foreign companies out and upgraded local companies in. Though  both companies will assure that consumers receive the best possible services and products, creating jobs and a more desirable product, the EU seems to not see it that way. Sure, local companies should be able to compete but is this really what the consumers (majority) really want?

Cell phone rates and EU

Filed under: Uncategorized — youayang09 @ 3:36 am

The EU meets today to discuss the rates of making and recieving phone calls. ( Article on Reuters.com) By doing so it would change the rates at which member states operate under. There was no decision and thus continuation of the debates and discussions are scheduled for May 2. If there is an agreement for there to be a rate, it would ensentially mean that Europeans would pay 40 euro cents ($0.54) a minute for making calls and pay 15 euro cents for recieving them.  Cell-phone companies of course oppose this legislation as they see it would destroy investments and that prices are already coming down anyways without legislation.

This goes in the issue of business vs politics as business want the market to fix any problems as politicians see the problem and want to fix there and then. Good and/or bad consequences can occur but only the future can tell. Rates are being changed because people are seemingly paying to high for calls that must be made from state to state and so it is unfair for those who must always call (businesses, relatives). This causes there to be disputes and thus creates for the EU the problem of either solving them or letting them fix themselves. If business fix these prices themselves, as said that prices are falling anyways it would make a change unneccessary even inefficient as it could mean a potential lost of profits or even businesses.

Stay Connected

Filed under: Uncategorized — youayang09 @ 3:20 am

Ever wished your internet connection had the signal of your cell-phone. Almost anywhere you go, you would have the ability to surf online during those crucial times when reseach is needed immediately. Well if you live in London you might just jump for joy as London can pontentially become the European Union’s largest Wi-fi (broadband internect connection) hotspot. As mentioned on a video (watch video) this could mean great productivity for London and sprout more firms to follow the ways of The Cloud’s. By having this, it betters the businesss world as people are able to get connected anywhere making them more productive. By simply paing 12 euros per month anyone can get unlimited access, with a working population of 350,000, this could mean big business for The Cloud’s. So far coverage extends all the way to the city of Soho, but the company seeks to expand it to cover the whole capital. Imagine if this was followed throughout Europe even the world, any where we go we can get connected and bring happiness to our lives.

April 18, 2007

United Through Resource Depletion

Filed under: Uncategorized — youayang09 @ 5:41 am

 Beyond for the on-going strife towards bringing gas prices back down,  environmental issues have become great debate among people. One of the greatest concerns is that one day the exploitation of the world will lead the the depletion of all natural resources. We are not yet at that time but it does look close. As mentioned on a news article on the Economist (click here) the EU has become concern on the riskiness of using oil imported from Russia, a land filled will natural resources.  Currently, the EuropeanUnion imports half of all its gas from Russia. New state members such as Hungary depend almost entirely on these gas imports. Thus, this gives Russia much influence in the realm of geopolitics. Since it also has control of a pipeline network that gives it almost full control on imported gas from Asia, Russia is able to control a huge global oil market. Russia becomes a great influence in the world solely through its political tool of energy. As mentioned in the article, “Kremlin needs three things: control over Russian energy reserves and production, control over the pipelines snaking across its territory and that of its neighbours, and long-term contracts with European customers that are hard to break. All three are in place.”This creates for Russia the ability for great power as it is capable of creating a strong military and fund for it through gas exports. Being so, The EU must figure out a way to avoid be pressured by Russia and still be able to have day to day trade. But because Russian pipelines run up and down Europe, little can be done. Russia plans to create more pipelines in Europe and studies show that with this, dependence on the EU from European states will move to dependence on Russia. One of the biggest concerns lay on UN’s creation of a pipeline called Nabucco that would supply Hungary with oil from Turkey. This pipeline conflicts with the Russia own goal of also extending its pipelines as it wants to extend existing pipelines to Hungary as well, eliminating the need of the EU to help supply Hungary with oil.

Though resource depletion usually causes states to fight for resources, it causes the unity of the states involved – big states at least. From a liberal perspective, this is good for everyone as there are “absolute gains” for the states involved. Everyone becomes a winner. Russia is able to gain profit and alliances, while the EU gains the trust of states in need of oil. Overall, this creates a globalization of states as they are all connected through the oil market. This can lead to more communication and more unity in European states, as Russia is helping out their neighbors and their neighbors’ neighbors, with the EU operating trade agreements. This is of course a optimistic view of EU’s oil trade with Russia.

When looking at this issue from a realist’s point of view, the whole story is changed. From a realist perspective, the only winner will be Russia as they are able to gain the most RELATIVE to other states. So by looking at relative gains rather than absolute gains, the trade between Russia and the EU must have some changes. With Russia supply half the imported oil, Russia now has great influence in Europe, especially now since there is a depletion of oil. Being that Russia is able to supply members states of the EU directly with oil through their pipes, this causes these states to become even more so dependant on Russia and less so on the EU in conducting these trades. Such an example is the conflicting Russian pipelines to Hungary and EU’s Nabucco.   The EU then loses more and gains less in these trades relative to that of Russia. And so, though resource depletion will create a sense of unity among European States,  this unity might only be that of the metal pipelines.

The major oil pipelines in Europe

April 13, 2007

http://europa.eu/

Filed under: Uncategorized — youayang09 @ 6:53 am

The EuropeanUnion celebrated its 50th anniversary and adopted a declaration marking the combine efforts in making European States more in common into a reality. The European Union is considered one of the best working regional intergovernmental organization. It has conducted in many foreign affairs and peacekeeping undertakings. It created with in it self a unity among the states. One of its accomplishments is the .eu domain that was established in April 2006, which as an article on New York Times puts it ” It’s also one of the fastest-growing top-level domains, with a 17 percent increase in registrations in the past five months.” (click here)

The Article mentions how over 2.5 million people and organizations have requested registrations with .eu domain names. Being that it is also open to the public it has become the top three most popular domain-name in Europe and top seven globally. As the European Registry of Internate Domain Names puts it “.EU, Your European Identity.”

By creating this domain-name, the EU promotes the unity of all European states as their companies and organizations become united under a commonality. This commonality can then become a stronghold in resolving conflicts between states and make more easy the process of doing so.

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