Grind for November 16th, 2018
“There is no object so large but that at a great distance from the eye it does not appear smaller than a smaller object near.”
– Leonardo da Vinci
Amazon chooses two locations for second headquarters
Amazon on Tuesday announced it had finally decided on a location for its second headquarters:
Long Island City (Queens) and Crystal City (Northern Virginia).
The decision to split its headquarters between two locations will prevent a single city from having to absorb 50,000 employees over the next 10 years and will expand the potential for attracting talented workers.
Amazon examined potential locations based on a variety of factors, including proximity to international airports, cost of living, and existing infrastructure.
Key “decision drivers” included:
— Site needed to be move-in ready by 2019, including office space, utility infrastructure, and zoning
— Site must have recreational and educational opportunities and available housing
— Site must be committed to sustainability
Thanks to its proximity to DC, Northern Virginia is a major center for information tech services to the federal government. It’s also a major driver of business growth in the region with impressive telecommunications infrastructure already in place. The state of Virginia has relatively low taxes and light regulation.
Queens is one of the most diverse neighborhoods in the nation.
Long Island City recently announced a $180 million project to improve its transportation and sewer systems and to add schools, and the state of New York is offering more than $1.5 billion in credits and incentives if Amazon meets space development and job creation goals.
Crystal River and Long Island City both have a large tech workforce, adequate transportation, good schools, recreational opportunities, available office space, and proximity to airports.
Merkel agrees with Macron: Europe needs a real army
In the face of rising crime rates, terror attacks, and ongoing pressure from Donald Trump to increase defense spending, French President Emmanuel Macron is calling to establish a “true European Army.”
German Chancellor Angela Merkel expressed a similar sentiment, telling lawmakers in the EU Parliament that “we have to work on the vision of one day creating a real European army.”
Macron also expressed concerns regarding Trump’s withdrawal from the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces Treaty: “When I see President Trump announcing that he’s quitting a major disarmament treaty which was formed in the 1980’s Euro-missile crisis that hit Europe, who is the main victim? Europe and its security.”
Trump criticized the idea of a European army as “insulting” and reiterated his demand that Europe pay its “fair share of NATO, which the US subsidizes greatly.”
NATO members are encouraged to spend at least 2% of their GDP on defense. France currently spends 1.81% and Germany – the EU’s largest economy – spends 1.24%. The United States spends 3.5%.
“Emmanual Macron suggests building its own army to protect Europe against the US, China, and Russia,” tweeted Trump on Tuesday. “But it was Germany in World Wars One & Two – How did that work out for France? They were starting to learn German in Paris before the US came along. Pay for NATO or not!”
Trump also attacked Macron over trade, unemployment, and his low approval rating:
“The problem is that Emmanuel suffers from a very low Approval Rating in France, 26%, and an unemployment rate of almost 10%. He was just trying to get onto another subject,” continued Trump. “By the way, there is no country more Nationalist than France…MAKE FRANCE GREAT AGAIN!”
GOOD TO THE LAST DROP:
Did you know… Wyoming has only 2 sets of escalators in the entire state.