Where LA smog settles; Pub Health & Pub D intersecting

Been a while since I blogged here, but have a few things to contribute.

First, I was just in the beautiful and otherworldly Joshua Tree:

From Joshua Tree

From Coalla Gardens (Joshua Tree)

I fled there to get out of the chaos of LA, but apparently LA followed me. Or at least its smog. These are views from Joshua Tree into the Coachella Valley, with the LA pollutants filling the ravine:

From View from Joshua

From View from Joshua

It is a stark reminder that our pollution does not simply disappear but rather affects communities beyond the municipal borders.

As a last note, a great piece about health diplomacy and soft power. We PubD students study “soft power” as the power of influence and how actors can achieve their goals neither through force nor coercion but rather positive persuasion. Here is a little excerpt from the article:

In their paper “Health diplomacy and the enduring relevance of foreign policy interests”, Harley Feldbaum and Joshua Michaud argue that there is a growing perception that health can be “an effective soft power tool for foreign policy in contrast to the hard power of military force”. The use of hospital ships such as Mercy and Comfort by the US to provide short-term medical care to underserved citizens around the world is just one example. China is exerting such power through its growing aid relations with Africa.