The administration has put forth a goal of doubling U.S. in the next five years. It’s a tall order, especially considering the state of some potentially major export markets. Look at China. In his latest book, “The Betrayal of American Prosperity” Clyde Prestowitz makes the incorrect assertion that while China’s number one export to the United States is computers and electronics, the top U.S. export to China is waste paper and scrap metal.
This past week saw a marked escalation in the ongoing struggle for geopolitical preponderance in East Asia between the United States and China. Twenty years ago, at the close of the Cold War, U.S. forces in the region had enormous advantages over their Chinese counterparts. Using ships, aircraft and troops forward-deployed at facilities in Japan, South Korea, Thailand, and Singapore, supported by others dispatched from Hawaii and the West Coast, the United States could defend its friends, deter its enemies and move its forces freely throughout the western Pacific.
The Publisher: Henry Luce and His American Century By Alan Brinkley (Knopf, 531 pp., $35) I. Sometimes human beings bring sociological theory to life. Consider the career of Henry Luce. A child of Presbyterian missionaries in China, he pursued wealth and power with unremitting zeal, creating the media empire that dominated American journalism for much of the twentieth century: Time, Inc. Yet Luce never lost touch with his didactic origins, never abandoned the conviction that his magazines should teach Americans the right way of thinking about the world.
Pabst Blue Ribbon is being sold in China... as an ultra-high end luxury drink: In America it's called PBR and is the blue-collar/hipster beverage of choice. In China it's called Pabst Blue Ribbon 1844 and will run you $44 a bottle. Pretty steep for a beer whose biggest draw in the U.S.
Over at Foreign Policy, Joshua Keating writes about a little-known natural disaster—underground coal fires in northern China: China's recent industrial growth depends heavily on coal -- the source of 70 percent of the country's energy—a major reason why it recently became the world's largest carbon emitter. The country's mining sector is also extremely dangerous, killing as many as 13 miners every day.
A couple of weeks ago, Jeffrey Immelt, the chief executive of General Electric, complained indignantly about China’s current and bitter hostility toward multinational corporations. According to the Financial Times, Immelt groused at a private dinner in Rome that the Chinese government was becoming ever more protectionist. “I am not sure that in the end, they want any of us to win, or any of us to be successful,” he said. Immelt’s remarks point to a noteworthy shift in the dynamic that moves American policy toward China, one tinged with irony.
"Catalans should disregard rulings by Spanish judiciary" is the headline to a letter in the Financial Times. It is signed by Gustau Alegret who wrote from Washington, D.C. I do not know him.
[Guest post by Isaac Chotiner] When Jon was away last week, his TNR colleagues rented out his office for various nefarious activities, one of which was the filming of a Bloggingheads.tv episode, where I debated Matt Yglesias. The clip below features our discussion of whether something is lost when people read fewer books and more blogs. And if you keep watching you will see a few minutes of soccer-bashing. The whole video, which includes discussions of LeBron James, Matt's trip to China, and Indian politics is here.
American leaders, impressed by the economic success of Singapore and China, frequently sound envious when talking about those countries’ educational systems. President Obama, for example, invoked Singapore in a March 2009 speech, saying that educators there “are spending less time teaching things that don’t matter, and more time teaching things that do. They are preparing their students not only for high school or college, but for a career.
For my sins, I have been reading Alain Badiou. (The intellectual’s work is never done.) He is, in his own words, “the most widely read and translated French philosopher in the world.” More banally, he is the very latest professor of liberation; and more banally still, the very latest professor of liberation from liberalism.