Railroad debt + Mind reading
When a company is organized as a private enterprise but acts on behalf of the state, it almost inevitably finds itself in a quandary. Decisions that are good for business rarely coincide with the needs of the common good and other political demands. A particularly apparent example is the Chinese railroad company, China Rail. The company's tasks include: Stimulating the economy in remote regions, training young people, providing eco-friendly mobility, and achieving high punctuality. But making profits is not one of them. The state-owned company is already groaning under a debt of almost €1 trillion and continues to build unprofitable lines in the countryside, writes our team in Beijing.
"Thoughts are free" – perhaps the lyrics of this old German song will need to be rewritten in the future. Being able to read information from human brains is not only a common plot element in science fiction stories. It would also be the absolute dream of authoritarian systems. It would make it possible to detect critical thoughts before they can be expressed or result in actions. Preventive detention would certainly contribute exceptionally to social stability. China has run the first tests of machine mind-reading on students watching pornography, writes Frank Sieren. But every new technology starts simple.
17+1 became 16+1, and now, in one fell swoop, 14+1. Estonia and Latvia have left China's East and Central Europe Roundtable after Lithuania led the way last year. It's a blow to Chinese foreign policy that shows how much the world has moved on in the past five years. At the time, there was a perception that Beijing's foreign policy was poaching at the EU's eastern border.