China dispatches low-level official to security conference

China has dispatched a low-level military delegation to an annual security meeting in Singapore that has dwelled heavily on Chinese activities in the South China Sea.

China’s presence at the Shangri-La Dialogue meeting this weekend is being led by Lt. Gen. He Lei, vice president of the People’s Liberation Army’s Academy of Military Science.

That follows a recent pattern of not sending high-level officials to the three-day forum that begins Friday, in an apparent attempt to deflect attention from China and its was taking steps to shore up its claims to virtually the entire South China Sea.

At last year’s meeting, U.S. Defense Secretary Jim Mattis sharply criticized what he called Beijing’s disregard for international law by its “indisputable militarization” of artificial islands in disputed areas of the South China Sea.

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Why Kim Kardashian-West wore Vetements to the White House

The reality TV star met with the US president to discuss prison reform, and wore the playful French brand for the occasion. Was she trolling Trump or making a bigger statement?

It was always too big an ask for Kim Kardashian-West- an entrepreneur, influencer and occasional campaigner who has built considerable financial, social and cultural capital on the back of publicity- to wear something unremarkable for Wednesday’s meeting with Donald Trump at the White House.

But few would have been able to predicted she would wear a black suit by the French style house, Vetements, with the brand’s name sewed across her crotch, only visible above the top of Trump’s desk in the Oval office.

Crotch-logo aside, the label is a savvy option. Vetements is a hip way collective, overseen by Demna Gvasalia, a Georgian decorator who is well known within the industry for creating meme-friendly clothes at amazingly high prices, heavily imbued with irony. Simply as his famous 2016 DHL T-shirt seemed to be a comment on global capitalism but went viral as an image, the choreographed image of Trump and Kardashian-West behind Trump’s always-empty desk will likely do the same.

Gosha Rubchinskiy wears the infamous DHL t-shirt on the Vetements runway during Paris fashion week in October 2015. Photograph: Kay-Paris Fernandes/ Getty Images

Secondly, there would always be two sets of photo. The paparazzi one, Kardashian-West’s preferred genre, and the official Oval Office shot with Trump, ready to be splashed across newspapers. Blink and you’d miss the logo in the pap shoots( a style of photo the manner house enjoys subverting) but in the second, with a zoom, you can actually watch the words across her trousers. Once you’ve seen them, the joke lands squarely on Trump- it is, arguably, the sartorial equivalent of doing bunny ears behind his head.

She is said to have meet with the president on Wednesday to discuss prison reform, and the possibility of pardoning 63 -year-old grandmother Alice Marie Johnson. Johnson is currently serving a life sentence for a first-time non-violent drug offence. It’s not her first campaign bid. In 2015, she criticised then-president, Barack Obama, for not employing the word “genocide” to describe the deaths of as many as 1.5 million Armenians in 1915. Kardashian-West’s great-great-grandparents left Armenia in 1914.

Kardashian-West paired the oversized suit with neon heels thought to be designed by Yeezy, her husband’s label- a bid, perhaps, to signal solidarity with Kanye West who was denounced by the left for professing his love for the president and stating they” are both dragon energy “. Getting approval from rightwing news site, Breitbart, it claimed she was channelling Melania Trump, although in truth, the’ pant suit’ was closer to the kind of thing Hillary Clinton would wear.

It would be cynical to assume that Kardashian-West was use the meeting as a stunt or a joke. It would also also be cynical to indicate she was attempting to confuse from the true nature of the meeting, throwing a crotch-shaped flare in the other direction. What is apparent, though, is that one reality Tv superstar was more adept at the art of self exposure than the other. Only Kardashian-West could use a meeting at the White House to trump Trump. And evaluate by his face, he had no idea what was going on next to him.

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Unlearning toxic masculinity can be difficult. Here are a few role models who can help.

We talk a lot about toxic masculinity.

It seems like people are starting to confound the meaning of the term.

“Oh, so you’re saying that masculinity is TOXIC, ” they say. “That’s SEXIST against MEN, ” they say.

To them I say: Stop being willfully obtuse.

If I said, “Whoa, that’s a rabid prairie dog, ” would you intentionally misunderstand me and yell at me for being a dingbat who thinks that ALL prairie puppies are rabid?

I didn’t say that, bro.

When I refer to “toxic masculinity, ” I’m not labeling all masculinity as toxic. Just like when I tell, “Oh shit, there’s a rabid prairie dog coming at you, ” I’m not saying that all prairie dogs are rabid.

But I am saying that some prairie puppies are clearly foaming at the mouth, means that something could be spreading through the colony — and sometimes you can’t tell the sick ones merely by looking at them.

Same thing with men .

So listen up 😛 TAGEND

No , not all forms of masculinity are toxic. But yes, some are.

Here’s what can look like 😛 TAGEND

Repression of impressions like sadness, fear, insecurity, and the related behaviours like crying, concealing, or talking about feelings. Example: “Boys don’t sob! Be a man! ”

Over-expression of indignation through behaviors that are violent, erratic, and intended to dominate. Example: “What’d you say? You can’t talk to me like that!* punches *) ”

Need to be strong, dominant, and alpha, and fear of carrying “weakening” impressions or behaviours like affection, vulnerability, tenderness, kindness, gentleness, heartbreak. Example: “My wife simply had a newborn. Whatever, let’s close the deal.”

Sexual entitlement and violence. Instance: “You know you want this.”

Transference of responsibility for impressions, actions, and outcomes to women. Example: “You just made me so mad.”

Mocking or rejecting men who do not adhere to these “dominant, ” “alpha male” standards of behavior. Example: “Don’t be a fag, Mike. Hey, everybody, look at Mike — he’s all butthurt like a little girl.”

Extreme fragility, because a man is told his sense of ego is dependent on the idea that he is dominant rather than the idea that he is inherently valuable just for being who he is.

Passing on these behaviours and postures to their children. Devastatingly.

Some low-cost Android phones shipped with malware built in

Avast has found that many low-cost , non-Google-certifed Android phones shipped with a stres of malware built in that could send users to download apps they didn’t intend to access. The malware, called called Cosiloon, overlays ads over the operating system in order to promote apps or even trick users into downloading apps. Devices effected shipped from ZTE, Archos and myPhone.

The app consists of a dropper and a warhead.” The dropper is a small application with no obfuscation, located on the/ system partition of affected devices. The app is wholly passive, only visible to the user in the list of system applications under’ puts .’ We have watched the dropper with two different names,’ CrashService’ and’ ImeMess, ‘” wrote Avast. The dropper then connects with a website to grab the payloads that the hackers wish to install on the phone.” The XML manifest contains information about what to download, which services to start and contains a whitelist programmed to potentially exclude specific countries and devices from infection. However, we’ve ever seen the country whitelist use, and simply a few devices were whitelisted in early versions. Currently , no countries or devices are whitelisted. The entire Cosiloon URL is hardcoded in the APK .”

The dropper is part of the system’s firmware and is not easily removed.

To summarize 😛 TAGEND

The dropper can install application packages defined by the manifest downloaded via an unencrypted HTTP connection without the user’s permission or knowledge.
The dropper is preinstalled somewhere in the furnish chain, by the manufacturer, OEM or carrier.
The user cannot withdraw existing dropper, because it is a system application, part of the device’s firmware.

Avast can see and remove the warheads and they recommend following these instructions to disable the dropper. If the dropper spots antivirus software on your telephone it will actually stop notifications but it will still recommend downloads as you browse in your default browser, a gateway to grabbing more( and worse) malware. Engadget notes that this vector is similar to the Lenovo ” Superfish” exploit that shipped thousands of computers with malware built in.

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Roseanne deserves her banishment, but well lose a lot with her | Suzanne Moore

I cant forgive her these latest awful tweets, yet she was once a rare voice that connected conservative and liberal America, tells Guardian columnist Suzanne Moore

As the new king of primetime, Richard Madeley said of Roseanne Barr’s disgusting tweets that sedatives don’t build you racist. Barr, whose show has now been cancelled, left Twitter after comparing a woman of colouring to an ape and then reappeared claiming that the sleeping pill Ambien had made her say these nasty things. She has also said that she is being picked on while other celebrities are not.

Her excellent casting has distanced itself from her outbursts, but still she goes on. Watching this woman has for some time been like watching a auto crash, and yet her talent is undeniable.

When I first considered that Barr was on Twitter, years ago, I was delighted. A working-class heroine is something to be. Or it was at one time. She wrote about imperfect, complicated blue-collar life with edge. In the 90 s there was no dishwasher in the Conner family house. They went to the mall, the phone was on the wall, the protagonists were overweight but had a sex life, jobs were hard to come by and the women were often smarter than the men. All of this was an inspiration, with Roseanne as the wisecracking self-styled slobby” domestic goddess”.

And then Barr unravelled before our eyes. Physically self-loathing, she had numerous plastic surgeries. She claimed to have been abused by her mothers after memories went inundating back. Twenty years after building those allegations, she said that going public with them was a terrible mistake.

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Roseanne Barr’s TV reveal cancelled after ‘abhorrent’ tweets- video report

As a child she had Bell’s palsy. She nearly died in a car accident at 16 and had such traumatic head injuries that she ended up in a psychiatric organization for eight months. In 2012 she operated for presidential nomination. She claims Donald Trump stole her Twitter act.

The euphemism used for her is “troubled”. These latest tweets, as obnoxious because this is, are nothing new- Barr has been tweeting outlandish conspiracy theories and racist rantings for ages, from rubbish about chemtrails to vicious Islamophobic insults. Her is supportive of Trump came as no astonish. That trajectory was visible. She tells of herself that she is a radical and not a liberal, and there is something uncomfortable there that the media establishment don’t want to reckon with.

When she marriage Tom Arnold in 1990, he and Barr claimed that the latter are America’s worst nightmare-” white junk with money “. The thing is, though, the Conner household were smart. They were presented reading actual books.

The reaction to Barr’s new show was critically mixed but she got 18 million viewers. Can you represent Trump voters sympathetically on Tv? Yes- and Barr did just that. Roseanne and her sister Jackie( the wonderful Laurie Metcalf, in” Nasty Woman” T-shirt and pussyhat) bicker over Roseanne’s is supportive of Trump, which is portrayed as being about jobs rather than social policy. Money is tight. Dan and Roseanne are shown eking out their expensive medication, swapping statins for anti-inflammatories. Race and gender-fluidity figure( they have a black granddaughter ). Grandson Mark wants to wear feminine dres and is protected by Dan. Family rises above politics.

To me this is important, as the liberal bubble of so much popular culture is surely big enough to include a little bit of “otherness”. This is not the view of Roxane Gay, who wrote:” We cannot reach people who build dangerous, shortsighted political choices. We confess, as Jackie does, or we resist, as hopefully the rest of us will .” She was saying that the myth of a white working-class voting for Trump has to be bust, because so many of his voters were middle-class. So it is not only about jobs.

Now, though , no one has to resist the entice of watching something complicated and funny and uncomfortable, because Barr has said inexcusable things. This is her own fault- but what a waste of her gifts. At a period when politics is so polarised, anyone who can show a dialogue between sides is important. In the UK and the US, the liberal media talks largely to itself and wonders how the right stays in power.

Roseanne Barr has always been a peculiar mixture of liberal and utterly reactionary social attitudes. And what do we with do that in a tickbox culture? Don’t we expend a lot of our lives learning to separate the art from the artist, usually in the case of great all those people who do bad things but attain great art? So while I don’t think Barr can be forgiven the latest awfulness, I hope we don’t be borne in mind that she made some fantastic ground-breaking television. Once.

* Suzanne Moore is a Guardian columnist

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Amy Schumer is using her birthday to send a clear message about gun control.

June 1 is Amy Schumer’s birthday.

In lieu of cards or well-wishes, however, the comedian is asking her fans for a more sobering gift: for each one of them to devote a damn about America’s gun violence crisis.

Photo by Mark Davis/ Getty Images.

In an Instagram post shared with her nearly 7 million followers, Schumer encouraged everyone to wear orange on June 1.

“Hi! Tomorrow is my bday, ” the starring, who turns 37 this year, began her caption. “If you want to say happy birthday to me please do it by joining me for #wearorangeday tomorrow as a sign to objective firearm violence. can help! “

Since two women were shot and killed at a Louisiana screening of her 2015 comedy, “Trainwreck, ” Schumer’s been a vocal advocate for gun reform on “the member states national” stage.

“These shootings have got to stop, ” she said during a press conference calling for action alongside her cousin, New York Senator Chuck Schumer. “I don’t know how else to say it.”

Photo by Andrew Burton/ Getty Images.

The Wear Orange Day Schumer’s promoting — organized by Everytown for Gun Safety — has been turning misfortune into real change.

The day’s historical significance dates back to 2013, when Chicago teen Hadiya Pendleton was shot and killed just days after having performed at President Barack Obama’s second inaugural parade.

She was 15 years old.

Photo by Scott Olson/ Getty Images.

In the aftermath of her death, Pendleton’s friends wore orange to honor her memory, and Everytown took component. Wear Orange grew from there, becoming a national day of remembrance for all victims of firearm violence and a plea to change the status quo.

This year’s Wear Orange Day, however, comes at an especially pivotal moment.

With the horrific shootings in Parkland, Florida, and Santa Fe, Texas, still fresh in many of our intellects, Americans are especially hungry for smarter, sensical firearm laws to help keep their communities safe.

With the November midterms six months away, Everytown believes that hunger can save lives.

“Our movement gains momentum when handgun sense activists are working together to fight for a future free from handgun violence, ” Wear Orange’s website reads. “Wear Orange Weekend is an opportunity for us to depict the country just how powerful we are.”

You can be part of the answer . Find a local Wear Orange event in your community .

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Facebook, Google face first GDPR complaints over forced consent

After two years coming down the pipe at tech giants, Europe’s new privacy framework, the General Data Protection Regulation( GDPR ), is now being applied — and long time Facebook privacy critic, Max Schrems, has wasted no time in filing four grievances relating to( certain) companies” take it or leave it’ posture when it comes to consent.

The complaints have been filed on behalf of( unnamed) individual users — with one filed against Facebook; one against Facebook-owned Instagram; one against Facebook-owned WhatsApp; and one against Google’s Android.

Schrems argues that the companies are using a strategy of” forced consent” to continue processing the individuals’ personal data — when in fact the law requires that users be given a free choice unless a consent is strictly necessary for provision of the service.( And, well, Facebook claims its core product is social networking — rather than farming people’s personal data for ad targeting .)

” It’s simple: Anything strictly necessary for a service does not require consent boxes anymore. For everything else users must have a real option to tell’ yes’ or’ no’ ,” Schrems writes in a statement.

” Facebook has even blocked accounts of users who have not given consent ,” he adds.” In the end users merely had the choice to delete the account or hit the “agree”-button — that’s not a free choice, it more reminds of a North Korean election process .”

We’ve reached out to all the companies involved for comment and will update this story with any response. Update: Facebook has now sent the following statement, attributed to its chief privacy policeman, Erin Egan:” We have prepared for the past 18 months to ensure we gratify the requirements of the GDPR. We have induced our policies clearer, our privacy decideds easier to find and introduced better tools for people to access, download, and delete their datum. Our work to improve people’s privacy doesn’t stop on May 25 th. For example, we’re building Clear History: a way for everyone to see the websites and apps that send us datum when you use them, clear this information from your account, and turn off our ability to store it associated with your account going forward .”

Schrems most recently founded a not-for-profit digital rights organization to focus on strategic litigation around the bloc’s updated privacy framework, and the complaints have been filed via this crowdfunded NGO — which is called noyb( aka’ none of your business ‘).

As we pointed out in our GDPR explainer, the provision in the regulation may be required for collective enforcement of individuals’ data rights is an important one, with the health risks to strengthen the implementation of the law by enabling non-profit organisations such as noyb to file complaints on behalf of individuals — thereby helping to redress the power imbalance between corporate giants and consumer rights.

That told, the GDPR’s collective redress provision is a component that Member Country can choose to derogate from, which helps explain why the first four complaints have been filed with data protection bureaux in Austria, Belgium, France and Hamburg in Germany — regions that also have data protection agencies with a strong record of defending privacy rights.

Given that the Facebook companies involved in these complaints have their European headquarters in Ireland it’s likely the Irish data protection bureau will get involved too. And it’s fair to say that, within Europe, Ireland does not have a strong reputation as a data protection rights champion.

But the GDPR allows for DPAs in different jurisdictions to work together in instances where they have joint subjects of concern and where a service crosses perimeters — so noyb’s action seems are aiming to exam this element of the new framework too.

Under the penalty structure of GDPR, major violations of the law can attract penalties as large as 4% of a company’s global revenue which, in the case of Facebook or Google, connotes they could be on the hook for more than a billion euros apiece — if they are deemed to have violated the law, as the complaints argue.

That told, devoted how freshly fixed in place the regulation is, some EU regulators may well tread softly on the enforcement front — at least in the first instances, to give companies some benefit of the doubt and/ or a chance to make amends to come into compliance if they are deemed to be falling short of the new standards.

However, in instances where companies themselves appear to be attempting to deform the law with a willfully self-serving interpretation of the rules, regulators may feel they need to act swiftly to nip any disingenuousness in the bud.

” We likely will not immediately have billions of penalty payments, but the corporations have intentionally contravened the GDPR, so we expect a corresponding penalty under GDPR ,” writes Schrems.

Only yesterday, for example, Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg — speaking in an on stage interview at the VivaTech conference in Paris — claimed his company hasn’t had to make any radical changes to comply with GDPR, and further claimed that a “vast majority” of Facebook users are willingly opting in to targeted advertising via its new permission flow.

” We’ve been rolling out the GDPR flows for a number of weeks now in order to make sure that we were doing this in a good way and that we could take into account everyone’s feedback before the May 25 deadline. And one of the things that I’ve found interesting is that the great majority of people choose to opt in to make it so that we can use the data from other apps and websites that they’re using to make ads better. Because the reality is if you’re willing to see ads in a service you want them to be relevant and good ads ,” said Zuckerberg.

He did not mention that the dominant social network does not offer people a free choice on accepting or declining targeted advertising. The new permission flow Facebook uncovered ahead of GDPR only offers the’ choice’ of ceasing Facebook solely if a person does not want to accept targeting advertising. Which, well, isn’t much of a option dedicated how powerful the network is.( Additionally, it’s worth pointing out that Facebook continues tracking non-users — so even deleting a Facebook account does not guarantee that Facebook will stop processing your personal data .)

Asked about how Facebook’s business model will be affected by the new rules, Zuckerberg essentially claimed nothing significant will change –” because dedicating people control of how their data is employed has been a core principle of Facebook since the beginning “.

” The GDPR adds some new controls and then there’s some areas that we need to comply with but overall it isn’t such a massive departure from how we’ve approached this in the past ,” he claimed.” I mean I don’t want to downplay it — there are strong new rules that we’ve needed to set a bunch of work into making sure that we complied with — but as a whole the philosophy behind this is not completely different from how we’ve approached things.

” In order to be able to give people the tools to connect in all the ways they want and build community a lot of doctrine that is encoded in a regulation like GDPR is really how we’ve was just thinking about all this stuff for a long time. So I don’t want to understate the areas where there are new rules that we’ve had to go and enforce but I also don’t want to make it seem like this is a massive deviation in how we’ve was just thinking about this stuff .”

Zuckerberg faced a range of tough questions on these points from the EU parliament earlier this week. But he avoided answering them in any meaningful detail.

So EU regulators are essentially facing a first exam of their mettle — i.e. whether they are willing to step up and defend the line of the law against big tech’s attempts to reshape it in their business model’s image.

Privacy statutes are nothing new in Europe but robust enforcement of them would certainly be a breath of fresh air. And now at the least, thanks to GDPR, there’s a penalties structure in place to provide incentives as well as teeth, and spin up a market around strategic litigation — with Schrems and noyb in the vanguard.

Schrems also stimulates the point that small startups and local companies are less likely to be able to use the kind of strong-arm’ take it or leave it’ tactics on users that big tech is able to unilaterally apply and extract’ consent’ as a consequence of the reach and power of their platforms — arguing there’s an underlying competition concern that GDPR has the potential to help to redress.

” The fight against forced consent ensures that the corporations cannot force users to consent ,” he writes.” This is especially important so that monopolies have no advantage over small and medium-sized companies .”

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Wearing glasses may really mean you’re smarter, major study finds

Its not just a pop culture trope a University of Edinburgh study has found intelligent people are 30% more likely to have genes related to poor eyesight

If you wear glasses I’ve got some good news: you may well be smarter than the average person. A new analyse published in the journal Nature Communications has found that needing to wear glasses is associated with higher levels of intelligence. But you probably knew that already.

In the study, the largest of its kind ever conducted, researchers from the University of Edinburgh investigated cognitive and genetic data regarding over 300,000 people aged between 16 and 102 that had been gathered by the UK Biobank and the Charge and Cogent consortia. Their analysis found” significant genetic overlap between general cognitive function, reaction time, and many health variables including eyesight, hypertension, and longevity “. Specifically, people who were more intelligent were almost 30% more likely to have genes which might indicate they’d need to wear glasses.

While being more intelligent may be linked to poor eyesight, it’s also connected with a lot of positive health benefits. Researchers procured negative correlations between cognitive function and a number of health problems, including angina, lung cancer and depression.

Of course, it’s important to remember that these are all simply correlations not conclusive connections. And it’s worth noting that what constitutes intelligence is subjective and can be difficult, if not impossible, to measure. Further, linking intelligence to DNA are to be able to lead into bogus” race science “.

Forget genetics though- there’s plenty of empirical proof that wearing glasses, whether you need them or not, makes people think you are more intelligent. A number of studies have found people who wear glasses are viewed as smarter, more dependable, industrious and honest. Which is why a lot of defense lawyers get their clients to wear glasses at trial. As lawyer Harvey Slovis explained to New York magazine:” Glasses soften their appearance so that they don’t seem capable of committing a crime. I’ve tried cases where there’s been a tremendous quantity of evidence, but my client wear glass and got acquitted. The glasses create a kind of unspoken nerd defense .”

Andy Porwitzky (@ DoktorAndy)

Isaac Asimov’s critique of the “ugly girl with glasses becoming popular” from 1956 is spectacular. toxMCVRLgA

October 30, 2016

It’s not just defense lawyers who use glass as a stage prop. Glasses are regularly used as shorthand in pop culture to connote that their wearer is intelligent. In the case of women, there’s also a well-worn” ugly girl who removes her glass and is revealed to be beautiful” trope. Isaac Asimov has a wonderful criticism of this in his essay The Cult of Ignorance. In the essay, which went viral when it was tweeted by an appreciative reader last year, Asimov writes:” The glass are not literally glass. They are merely a symbol, a symbol of intelligence. The audience is taught two things;( a) Proof of extensive intelligence is a social deterrent and causes unhappiness;( b) Formal education is unnecessary, can be minimised at will and the resulting limited intellectual developing leads to happiness .”

Justin Bieber wearing glass and, for some reason, holding a snake. Photo: Christopher Polk/ Getty Images

While America hasn’t changed much when it comes to its suspicion of intellectuals, the symbolism of glasses has begun to shift. Prescription-less glasses have become something of a way accessory, worn by people who want to look sophisticated or cool. Not everyone is impressed though- GQ called wearing fake glass” bottom-of-the-barrel hipster behaviour “. However, that hasn’t stopped a lot of celebs from enthusiastically scraping the bottom of that barrel. Justin Bieber is just one high-profile fan of fashion glass. I’m quite the belieber in his sophisticated-glasses seem, even if some may say he’s making a sight of himself.

Make sure to visit: raises $34 million to simplify cloud deployment

French startup has raised a $34 million funding round. The company wants to help you manage your cloud infrastructure by handling the most tedious part of the job.

When you use for your application, the startup is going to handle testing and deployment to your cloud infrastructure. Every time you want to iterate and update your application to a new version, deployment is as simple as a git commit.

Partech is leading the round, with Idinvest Partners, Benhamou Global Ventures, SNCF Digital Ventures and existing investor Hi Inov also participating. targets big clients. The company is currently working with 650 enterprise clients, such as Magento, Gap Inc. and The Financial Time. In 2018, revenue has more than doubled compared with the corresponding period last year. can create new instances and deploy clones of your web applications in less than 60 seconds. That’s how you can deploy with confidence and save time.

The idea is that helps you deploy 10 periods or 20 times per day. Your users won’t see a difference as your website will remain available during the course of its entire day. Behind the scene, utilizes multiple cloud vendors for its infrastructure, including Amazon Web Service, Microsoft Azure and Orange Business Services. isn’t the only continuous deployment solution out there. And many tech companies are going to build their own continuous deployment process on top of open source technologies.

But many companies don’t has got a big tech team and can outsource this part of their infrastructure. If you’re building a media or e-commerce website, you might would like to concentrate on other parts of your business for instance. In that case, offer a one-stop shop for your cloud hosting needs.

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US on brink of trade war with EU, Canada and Mexico as tit-for-tat tariffs begin

Jean-Claude Juncker pledges retaliation as EU companies face 25% tariffs on steel and 10% on aluminiumTrump imposes tariffs business live

The United States and its traditional allies are on the brink of a full-scale trade war after European and Canadian leaders reacted swiftly and angrily to Donald Trump’s decision to impose tariffs on steel and aluminium producers.

The president of the European commission, Jean-Claude Juncker, promised immediate reprisal after the US commerce secretary, Wilbur Ross, told EU companies would face a 25% responsibility on steel and a 10% responsibility on aluminium from midnight on Thursday.

Europe, along with Canada and Mexico, had been granted a temporary reprieve from the tariffs after they were unveiled by Donald Trump two months ago.

However, Ross sent shudders through global financial markets when he said insufficient progression had been constructed in talks with three of the US’s traditional allies to reduce America’s trade deficit and that the waiver was being lifted.

Wall Street slumped as the Dow Jones Industrial Average closed down more than 250 points as investors sold off shares in manufacturers and corporations with global reaching. Shares across Europe also declined.

The move from Washington- which comes at a time when Trump is also threatening protectionist action against China- triggered an immediate and angry response from Canada, Brussels and from individual European capitals.

Juncker “ve called the” US move ” unjustified” and said the EU had no choice but to hit back with tariffs on US goods and a case at the World Trade Organisation in Geneva.

” We will defend the Union’s interests, in full compliance with international trade statute ,” he added. Brussels has already announced that it would target Levi’s jeans, Harley-Davidson motorbikes and bourbon whiskey.

The UK, which has hopes of agreeing a trade liberalisation deal with the US after Brexit, carried alarm at Ross’s announcement.

Liam Fox, the international trade secretary, told Britain would not rule out countermeasures or taking Washington to the WTO, which arbitrates on global trade disputes.

Speaking to Sky News he attacked the tariffs as “patently absurd” and recommended the US to think again.” It would be a great pity if we ended up in a tit-for-tat trade dispute with our closest friends .”

A spokesman for Number 10 said the government was ” profoundly disillusioned” the US had decided to apply the tariffs and that Theresa May would raise the issue with Trump at next week’s meeting of the G7 industrial nations in Canada.

” The UK and other European Union countries are close allies of the US and should be permanently and fully exempted from the American measures on steel and aluminium .”

The French president, Emmanuel Macron, called the US tariffs illegal and a mistake, while the Canadian prime minister, Justin Trudeau, issued an immediate like-for-like reaction- announcing tariffs of up to 25% on US importations worth up to 16.6 bn Canadian dollars( PS9. 6bn ), which was the total value of Canadian steel exportations to the US last year. The tariffs will encompass steel and aluminium as well as orange juice, whiskey and other food products.

With the White House having used national security legislation to introduce the tariffs, Trudeau called the measures an “affront” to Canadians who had opposed alongside their American comrades in arms.” That Canada could be considered a national security threat to the US is inconceivable .”

Canada’s foreign minister, Chrystia Freeland, went further calling her country’s $16.6 bn retaliatory tariffs” the strongest trade action Canada has taken in the postwar era. This is a very strong response. It is a proportionate reply, it is perfectly reciprocal … this is a very strong Canadian action in response to a very bad US decision .”

Mexico also denounced the move, saying it” deeply regrets and disapproves” the US decision.

The economics minstry said it would adopt equivalent measures on a variety of products, including flat steel, lamps, pork legs and shoulders, sausages and food preparations, apples, grapes, cranberries, various cheeses, and other products,” up to an amount comparable to damage caused by the United States’ action “.

It added:” This measure will be in force for as long as the US government preserves the imposed tariffs .”

Hopes remain that the fallout could be contained. Analysts at the research firm Oxford Economics said the economic hit for Europe would be well below 0.1% of GDP, as steel and aluminium merely make up a small part of the bloc’s overall exports around the world. However, they warned a tit-for-tat escalation leading to tariffs on other goods, such as vehicles, would have dire repercussions for global trade.

Last week, the Trump administration launched a national security investigated by car imports on national security grounds that could lead to tariffs on automobiles from Europe, Japan and South Korea, should trade tensions spiraling further out of control.

For the struggling UK steel industry, the news of US tariffs inspired fresh alarm. The director of UK Steel, Gareth Stace, told:” President Trump had already loaded the gun and today, we now know that the US administration has unfortunately fired it and potentially started a damaging trade war.

” Since President Trump stated his plans to impose blanket tariffs on steel imports nearly three months ago, the UK steel sector had hoped for the best but still dreaded the worst. With the expiration of the EU exemption now confirmed to take effect tomorrow[ Friday, 1 June ], unfortunately our cynicism was justified and we will now find damage not only to the UK steel sector but also the US economy .”

Representatives for the US metal industry also expressed disappointment.” Make no mistake: restricting the raw material render in the U.S. and imposing tariffs on imports from our closest trading partners places American producers directly in harm’s style ,” said Paul Nathanson of The Coalition of American Metal Manufacturers and Users.

The CBI cautioned the EU against overreacting to Washington’s move. Ben Digby, international director at the employers’ organisation, told:” The president’s measures are deeply concerning for firms in the UK, for close trading partners and across supplying chains .”

Trump announced his tariffs in March as a route of protecting US firms from inexpensive imports but Digby said the problem was caused by global overproduction of the metals and needed to be tackled jointly by Brussels and Washington.

” There are no winners in a trade war, which will damage prosperity on both sides of the Atlantic. These tariffs could lead to a protectionist domino effect, damaging firms, employees and consumers in the US, UK and many other trading partners. Now is not the time for any disproportionate escalation, and we urge the EU to consider this when initiating its response .”

But neither side showed any immediate sign of being willing to defuse the tension. Cecilia Malmstrom, the European trade commissioner, said the Brussels response would be proportionate and in accordance with WTO rules. Ross shrugged off the threat of EU retaliation, saying it would have little impact on the US economy.

Manfred Weber, the leader of the European People’s party, the largest group in the European parliament and a key ally of German chancellor Angela Merkel, warned that treating the EU as the “enemy” would damage US consumers.

” Europe does not want a trade conflict. We believe in a fair trade regime from which everybody benefits ,” he told.
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” We have tried everything to build dialogue and mutual understanding predominate. If President Trump decides to treat Europe as an adversary, we will have no choice but to defend European industry, European jobs, European interests .”

Ross blamed insufficient progress in talks with Mexico and Canada over changes to the North American Free Trade Agreement( Nafta) for the US’s decision to slap tariffs on its two neighbours.

Mexico’s under-secretary of foreign trade, Juan Carlos Baker, tweeted:” Mexico categorically rejects any unilateral, protectionist measures that distort trading in North America .”

China, too, warned that it would respond with tit-for-tat action of its own.

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