China Readings for October 9th

  • Coming Soon – The Drone Arms Race – NYTimes.com– What was a science-fiction scenario not much more than a decade ago has become today’s news. In Iraq and Afghanistan, military drones have become a routine part of the arsenal. In Pakistan, according to American officials, strikes from Predators and Reapers operated by the C.I.A. have killed more than 2,000 militants; the number of civilian casualties is hotly debated. In Yemen last month, an American citizen was, for the first time, the intended target of a drone strike, as Anwar al-Awlaki, the Qaeda propagandist and plotter, was killed along with a second American, Samir Khan.If China, for instance, sends killer drones into Kazakhstan to hunt minority Uighur Muslims it accuses of plotting terrorism, what will the United States say? What if India uses remotely controlled craft to hit terrorism suspects in Kashmir, or Russia sends drones after militants in the Caucasus? American officials who protest will likely find their own example thrown back at them.

    “The problem is that we’re creating an international norm” — asserting the right to strike preemptively against those we suspect of planning attacks, argues Dennis M. Gormley, a senior research fellow at the University of Pittsburgh and author of “Missile Contagion,” who has called for tougher export controls on American drone technology. “The copycatting is what I worry about most.”

  • China real estate tycoon criticized for joking about loss of Steve Jobs | ChinaHush– The passing of Steve Jobs has been shocking to the Chinese public and posts of mourning for the late great American visionary overwhelm the internet, especially on Weibo.com. Pan Shiyi (潘石屹), Chairman of SOHO China, the largest real estate developer in Beijing also posted an entry on his own Weibo page about the death of Steve Jobs, but jokingly:‘苹果’董事会应该马上做一决定:大量生产1000元人民币以下一部的iPhone手机和iPad,让更多(人)用上‘苹果’,这是对乔布斯最好的纪念。

    The Apple board should make a decision: mass-producing iPhones and iPads that sell under 1,000 RMB (around 156 USD) , let more people use Apple products. That’s the best way to commemorate Jobs.

    Soon this post sparked a controversy on the Internet when one netizen replied to Pan’s entry :

    “潘总哪天要也去世了,也请贵公司推出1000元一平米的房子吧,十几亿人民都会纪念您。”

    “One day Chairman Pan will pass away, please ask your company to release houses that sell at 1,000 yuan per m². 1.3 billions of people will commemorate your  too.”

  • Fear of Dragons – NYTimes.com Yu Hua OpEd– Liang Qichao, a key reform figure in the late-19th century, once said that the measures taken by the Qing government to guard against popular unrest were infinitely more elaborate than those of advanced countries. Over a hundred years later, China remains the leader in efforts to forestall popular protest.So it is with only superficial gestures that our officials commemorate 1911. They claim to be celebrating 1911, but in fact they are hailing 1949, when the People’s Republic of China was proclaimed.

    In Wuhan, the birthplace of the 1911 uprising, police were directed to reinforce their patrols between Aug. 27 and Oct. 10. Apart from the several thousand officers conducting patrols each day, 100 paramilitary police and 200 special police armed with submachine guns have been assigned to street duty. A quarter of a million surveillance cameras watch every corner 24 hours a day — all in the name of “creating a peaceful environment for the centennial.”

  • Is there a ‘bamboo ceiling’ at U.S. companies? – Ask Annie – Fortune Management – Few Asian Americans have made it to the top of the corporate ladder at Fortune 500 companies despite the minority group’s outsize achievements. Why is that?
    By Anne Fisher, contributor
    FORTUNE — Dear Annie:  I just got passed over for yet another promotion, the third one in five years, even though I’ve been working flat-out and all my performance evaluations have been great. This is upsetting, but perhaps not surprising, considering that I am Asian American (third-generation Chinese) and there is no one of Asian extraction in any high position at this company. I hate to “play the race card,” but given the circumstances, I can’t help wondering if there is some subtle race discrimination at work here. What are your thoughts? — Invisible Man
  • Dear I.M.:  You aren’t the only one wondering. About 5% of U.S. residents identify themselves as Asian, but Asian Americans hold fewer than 2% of executive jobs at Fortune 500 companies, according to a study published in July by the nonprofit Center for Work-Life Policy.
  • Senate apologizes for discrimination against Chinese immigrants – latimes.com– The U.S. Senate has approved a resolution apologizing for the nation’s past discriminatory laws that targeted Chinese immigrants, such as the Chinese Exclusion Act of 1882.The resolution passed Thursday night, by unanimous consent, “cannot undo the hurt caused by past discrimination against Chinese immigrants, but it is important that we acknowledge the wrongs that were committed many years ago,” said Sen. Scott Brown (R-Mass.), the lead sponsor.

    A similar resolution, sponsored by Rep. Judy Chu (D-El Monte), the first Chinese American woman elected to Congress, is pending in the House. It is backed by members of both parties.

    For Chu, the effort to get Congress to acknowledge the discrimination is personal; her grandfather faced the hostile laws.

  • U.S. Senate apologizes for discriminating laws targeting Chinese– A SHAMEFUL PERIOD IN AMERICAN HISTORY.The U.S. Senate has apologized for the country’s discriminating laws targeting Chinese immigrants at the turn of 20th century, and the Chinese American community said it brings a sense of closure and justice to their community.

    The Senate passed the resolution on Thursday evening with unanimous consent. It acknowledged the contributions made by Chinese immigrants to U.S. economic growth in the late 19th century and the start of 20th century, and recounted injustices, including the Chinese Exclusion Laws, done to the Chinese community.

    The Chinese Exclusion Laws involved legislation the Congress passed between 1870 and 1904 that explicitly discriminated against persons of Chinese descent based on race. In 1882, Congress passed the Chinese Exclusion Act, which imposed a ten-year moratorium on Chinese immigration and naturalization of Chinese settlers. The law was later expanded several times to apply to all persons of Chinese descent, each time imposing increasingly severe restrictions on immigration and naturalization.

  • Cineresie on Vimeo – videos on contemporary china
  • China’s Insatiable Demand for English Teachers – FINS Jobs News and Advice– A surging demand for learning the English language in China has turned the export-intensive country into an importer of American teachers, creating thousands of potential jobs for recent graduates.As many as 300 million Chinese people are learning English, said Katie Wagnon, the recruitment manager at English First, a division of the Lucerne, Switerland-based EF Education First, which has offices and schools in more than 50 countries. The need for educators in the world’s most populous country has left schools scrambling to fill positions, and recruiters eager to capitalize on the market.
  • 温州民间借贷危机引发高层关注 牵涉九成家庭_新闻_腾讯网– “十一”长假期间,不少温州中小企业主为民间借贷的资金链危机而忧心忡忡。受访者普遍表示,中小企业在银行贷款难,“逼迫”企业不得不选择高利率的民间借贷,而温州庞大的民间借贷市场如今已经牵连了当地的家家户户。近期温州越来越多的企业主“跑路”已经引发了高层的关注。随着政府的最终介入和多项扶持政策出台,中小企业阴霾的生存困境或将迎来曙光。
  • Life Sciences Companies Go to China to Raise Capital | Asia Healthcare Blog – Earlier this year as part of an advisory board I sit on, we traveled to China to see a host of companies who are successfully operating in the country.  One of those that stuck most in my head was Crown Biosciences.  Started by a group of top-notch pharmaceutical leaders from the United States, the management team now boasts eleven executive level world-class researchers, ten of which owe much of their education to universities in the United States, but have now gone back to China.  You can read more about one of the executive’s life journey from Taiwan to the United States and now to China here, but the much more interesting observation from our trip was the reliance American pharmaceutical companies were putting on China.  Crown’s particular business model allows them to partner with American and European pharma companies as a provider of lower-cost drug discovery and pre-clinical trials.  For pharmaceuticals coming out of developed economies, they have two additional objectives in China:  first, and most obviously, build market share in China’s high-growth market.  Second, access China’s inexpensive R&D capabilities to complete drug discovery faster and less costly than what is possible in North America or the European Union.

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