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Vox Sentences: China’s national pork crisis

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Vox Sentences is your daily digest for what’s happening in the world. Sign up for the Vox Sentences newsletter, delivered straight to your inbox Monday through Friday, or view the Vox Sentences archive for past editions.

Trump unveils his new immigration plan to a lukewarm crowd; African swine fever has led to a national pork supply crisis in China.


Trump’s very vague immigration plan


Alex Wong/Getty Images

  • Trump has revealed his newest immigration plan, which would favor young, educated immigrants over those with family ties. [Politico / Jordyn Hermani]
  • The new “merit-based” system, which was spearheaded by Trump’s son-in-law Jared Kushner, wouldn’t change the number of green cards allocated but prioritizes those who gain more “points” based on age, education, job offers, and English proficiency. [CNBC / Ylan Mui and Eamon Javers]
  • One thing that the new plan fails to address: legal status for DREAMers. Despite Democrats’ push for new protections for the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA), White House press secretary Sarah Sanders said the plan didn’t include it because it is too “divisive.” [Washington Post / John Wagner, Seung Min Kim, Josh Dawsey and David Nakamura]
  • Unfortunately for Trump, it seems like his newest plan will be a hard sell, especially for Democrats who want to secure DACA protections and prioritize keeping together immigrant families. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi criticized the merit system for being “condescending.” [The Hill / Jordan Fabian]
  • Republicans, too, seem wary of the vague nature of the plan. Not only does it leave out legal status for DREAMers, but it also fails to address the “broken” asylum system and the estimated 11 million undocumented immigrants. [USA Today / John Fritze, Alan Gomez and David Jackson]
  • If anything, Trump’s new plan is an attempt to unite Republicans behind a unified message on immigration — an issue that has long caused so much controversy. So far, however, the reaction seems to be lukewarm at best. [CNN / Maegan Vazquez and Kevin Liptak]

Swine fever could kill a third of China’s pigs

  • China’s pig livestock industry, the largest in the world, is dwindling at a rapid rate due to the African swine fever. [NYT / Mike Ives and Katherine Li]
  • Experts estimate that the pig population will shrink by a third in 2019 — which would be like eliminating all the pigs in Europe and the US combined. Swine fever is so deadly for pigs because it is highly contagious, but the disease does not harm humans. [CNN / Andrew Stevens and Lily Lee]
  • The disease has already spread to Vietnam, Cambodia, Mongolia, Hong Kong, and possibly North Korea. Experts worry that the swine fever will spread even further to countries that aren’t prepared to deal with the disease. [Science Magazine / Dennis Normile]
  • The people of China are already feeling the effects of the soaring prices of pork, which is the staple meat for most of the country’s 1.4 billion people. Last week, China’s inflation rate jumped to its highest in six months for this very reason, and experts are concerned that the situation will only worsen. [South Morning China Post / Karen Yeung]
  • The spread of swine fever also points to a larger problem: many Chinese farms have low biosecurity, partially because they cannot afford it. Diseases will continue to threaten the stability of the country’s food supply if this issue isn’t addressed. [South Morning China Post / Danny Lee]
  • The impact of China’s struggling pork industry will likely affect US farmers with a sharp drop in demand for feed exports such as soybeans. [Financial Times / Emiko Terazono]

Miscellaneous

  • Pop art icon Jeff Koons sold a sculpture of a rabbit at a record price for a living artist: $91 million. [Reuters]
  • This German startup plans to get flying taxis up and running in six years. [CNN / Rishi Iyengar]
  • Against all odds, China’s biggest import may be TikTok, the viral video sharing app. Fans say you’d have to see it for yourself to understand the user experience. [BuzzFeed News / Ryan Broderick]
  • A couple snatched the deal of the night when they were accidentally served a bottle of wine that’s nearly $6,000. [USA Today / Ryan W. Miller]
  • The College Board recognizes that the playing field for college preparation isn’t always even. That’s why they’re introducing “adversity scores” to capture students’ economic and social background. [The Wall Street Journal / Douglas Belkin]

Verbatim

“Democrats are proposing open borders, lower wages and, frankly, lawless chaos. We are proposing an immigration plan that puts the jobs, wages and safety of American workers first. Our proposal is pro-American, pro-immigrant and pro-worker. It’s just common sense.” [Trump during his speech announcing his new immigration plan]


Listen to this:

Brian Stelter is the host of CNN’s Reliable Sources, as well as the network’s chief media correspondent. Ezra Klein sat down to interview him about the future of cable news and its effect on the political system in a new episode of The Ezra Klein Show. [Spotify | Apple Podcasts]


Read more

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Yes, Quora still exists, and it’s now worth $2 billion

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Digital Trends Live – 7.10.19 – Nintendo Switch Lite Confirmed + India May Ban Cryptocurrencies

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On today’s episode: Nintendo officially announced the much rumored Switch Lite; WarnerMedia makes HBO Max official, launching with Friends in 2020; India to ban cryptocurrencies – could impact Facebook’s Libra; team sets out to topple the land speed record; Overtock.com President joins to talk about their new A.R. feature; The best CPUs and GPUs on the market; Passwords vulnerability discussion with Keeper Security CEO; If you make a ton of PPT decks, you likely need a CMS – Shufflrr has you covered; Gaming Editor Felicia Miranda takes the cover off the Switch Lite and the best Prime Day deals to watch out for.

View at DailyMotion

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25 Users Showed How Different Instagram Is From Reality, and It Can Make You Way More Confident

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According to the Royal Society for Public Health (RSPH), Instagram is the most harmful social media for psychological health. Every day, we are disappointed when we start comparing our lives to the photos online without even thinking about how these perfect pictures were created. Fortunately, there are users who are ready to reveal what their lives look like without photoshop and filters.

Bright Side is happy to show the photos that will not only give you confidence, but will also improve your mood.

Before and after taken about 30 seconds apart

Nobody looks good in the morning.

Everything depends on the angle.

Trash looks bad no matter where it is.

“I love taking photos on the beach.”

It’s not just bodies and faces that get tune-ups on Instagram. The locals would be amazed to see the photo on the left.

Each successful photo actually means there were hundreds of failed attempts.

The photos I share vs The photos I’m tagged in

A black eye given by a unicorn

It appears that the rainbow is fake.

This is what’s behind a perfect life.

It’s always like this.

If people posted their real photos from the gym

10 minutes after cleaning and 10 hours later

Mud baths are attractive.

Behind the stage of perfect photo

Just imagine what the process looked like.

On hot days, you really need water-resistant makeup.

Before the party / after the party

When you are too hungry to arrange the food in a beautiful way:

This is the same girl.

There is something wrong with this photo.

Some people look like aliens in their photos.

It should be prohibited to tag people in photos.

Instagram vs Real-life motherhood

Do you prefer to post real or idealized photos?

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10 Powerful Sculptures That Tell a Story Better Than Any Novel Could

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We often take sculptures that surround us for granted, thinking that their only message is the one in plain sight. But it turns out that many of them have a deeper meaning like an angel that is made of weapons given up by those who never want to commit crimes again or a group of ginormous figures that tell us how a new life is born. Sculptures have a whole lot of good stories to share if you’re willing to listen.

Come with Bright Side on a little journey around the globe to see 10 eloquent monuments and sculptures and learn the stories behind them.

1. Knife Angel by Alfie Bradley has persuaded hundreds of people to give up violence.

Alfie Bradley created this breathtaking 27-foot-high angel made of more than 100,000 knives. These weapons were surrendered to knife bins around the UK and were collected by the UK police, knife crime charities, action groups and other people who were affected by knife crimes in one way or another. The Knife Angel travels around the UK to educate people on how important the problem of knife crime is and how dangerous these weapons are. You can learn more about The Knife Angel, the process of its creation, and its current locations here.

2. The Passer-Through-Walls by Jean Marais illustrates the final scene from a famous French novel.

Le Passe-Muraille is a French novel by Marcel Aymé that tells the story of a modest office worker who one day discovers that he has a superpower — he can walk through walls! The hero uses his gift to the fullest to solve problems and becomes a burglar, gets into prison, and escapes until one day he loses his power right on his way through a wall and gets stuck in it. This monument is also quite interactive — the man’s hands are polished by thousands of people who try to help him get out of the wall.

3. Building Bridges by Lorenzo Quinn shares a recipe for a better world.

How do we make our world a better place to live in? Friendship, wisdom, help, faith, hope, and love — these are the ingredients to a better world and happier people according to Lorenzo Quinn, a famous Italian artist. These 6 virtues are embodied in the 6 pairs of hands that build a bridge together. This is one of the latest works by Quinn that was built for 2019’s Venice Art Biennale.

4. Corporate Head by Terry Allen tells us about the danger of being focused on profit at all costs.

The impressive life-sized bronze sculpture of a man who has buried his head in the building resides in Los Angeles, California in the US. The sculpture embodies a businessman who has devoted all his life to gaining profit for himself and the company he works for. He is separated from the office building only from his neck down, which means his thoughts have been completely absorbed by the establishment he works for.

The sculpture illustrates the modern pace of life where people have to carry an economic burden and spend their whole lives working in businesses, often missing out on things that are way more important than material wealth.

5. Sphere Within a Sphere by Arnaldo Pomodoro reminds us of how fragile our planet is.

This wonderful statue mesmerizes viewers with a complex structure of fractured spheres — the outer one and the inner one — and numerous intricate gears inside. The artist, Arnaldo Pomodoro, liked to study simple geometrical forms in his work and managed to hide deep meaning behind those simple forms. The Sphere Within a Sphere once again reminds us how everything in the universe is interconnected, how fragile our world is, and how easily it can be broken into pieces.

6. The Man Who Measures the Clouds by Jan Fabre speaks about the struggles of measuring the immeasurable.

This unique artwork with the gold leaf finishing touch is part of 2019’s Venice Art Biennale and it shows viewers a man rising to a height of 29.5 feet (9 meters) and trying to measure the clouds with a ruler. This sculpture can be interpreted as a person’s desperate attempt to make the impossible possible, as our never-ending striving to surpass ourselves as mankind, or as a nod to ancient philosophy that thought that human beings were the measure of all things.

7. Inertia and The Bankers by Jason Decaires Taylor tackle social issues and call for our responsibility.

The Bankers, Inertia and other marvelous underwater sculptures by Jason Decaires Taylor reveal the most acute problems of modern society, like being obsessed with material wealth and being exposed to mass media’s influence. But apart from that, these unbelievable works serve as homes for coral that are on the verge of extinction in many regions of our planet. By placing his masterpieces underwater in Mexico, the Bahamas, and other places, the artist tries to attract more attention to global climate changes and the things we can do to protect the earth.

8. Absorbed by Light by Gali Lucas and Karoline Hinz honestly tell us how obsessed we’ve become with gadgets and technology.

3 people sitting on a bench, absorbed by their smartphones so much so that they don’t even notice each other. What could illustrate our era better? The installation that was part of the Amsterdam Light Festival symbolizes how modern technology connects and disconnects us at the same time. When you walk at night next time, look around and you’ll see the same picture — dozens of people all around with their faces lit up by their mobile phones. We actually are absorbed by these lights, aren’t we?

9. Trains to Life — Trains to Death by Frank Meisler commemorates children whose lives were saved and taken during the Holocaust.

The impressive work by Frank Meisler is located in Berlin, Germany, and it has 2 parts — 5 figures of boys and girls in dark bronze on one side, and a boy and a girl made of light bronze on the other side. The kids in these 2 parts of the monument gaze into different directions and symbolize 2 different outcomes that awaited children during the Holocaust. The group of 5 figures commemorates the 1.6 million Jewish kids that were sent to concentration camps and were killed, while 2 other kids pay tribute to those 10,000 children that were saved and transported to England.

10. The Miraculous Journey by Damien Hirst shows the stages of a baby’s growth in the womb.

This amazing monument located outside the Sidra Medical and Research Centre in Doha, Qatar, consists of 14 large-scale bronze sculptures, each of them showing a stage of an embryo’s growth in the womb from conception to birth. Being extremely explicit and bold, The Miraculous Journey evoked controversial feelings in the eastern audience and was even covered from public view for some time.

Here’s what Damien Hirst, the creator of the monument said about the ideas he addressed in his work: “Ultimately, the journey a baby goes through before birth is bigger than anything it will experience in its human life. I hope the sculpture will instill in the viewer a sense of awe and wonder at this extraordinary human process, which will soon be occurring in the Sidra Medical Center, as well as every second all across the globe.”

Which of these monuments would you like to see with your own eyes? Can you share with us a picture of a sculpture or a monument that impressed you?

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