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Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Thinking Big - China: New Panama Canal, Corruption and Asia

It's easy to look at the news with mention of China individually, but when you start looking at a bigger picture I see China as thinking big, and trying lots of things that have risk, but also a high potential of paying off.

Some examples:

Free Trade Agreement with Australia
Panama Canal Competitor in Nicaragua
2nd $400 Billion Russia China Gas Deal
South China Sea
Mapping of US Electric Grid by two countries
Attacks on Corruption
Improving of China's Military

All of the above campaigns are thinking big, and all will have a potentially significant impact on China. It's hard to say which one would have more impact. The Gas Deals with China, at $800 Billion helps China's energy security tremendously. The efforts in the South China sea for securing resources is also big. Helping create a competitor to the Panama Canal in a Chinese politically friendly country would be historic. And the attacks on corruption may have significant impact on the current Chinese society.

I would argue, the one with the most potential is the campaign against corruption, and it's impact on China's military readiness. Historically, there has been a huge corruption issue in the Chinese military that has reduced it's combat ability. If the Chinese government can reform the Chinese military, and my opinion they will, this will be significant. There are two ways to look at a military force, one is by numbers and the other is by effectiveness. The US through training and technology achieved a military force in the Gulf Wars that shocked the Chinese military with their effectiveness. This forced many changes in the Chinese military to improve their effectiveness. China has been moving away from the idea of a peasant army, that would win through a battle of attrition, to one that can project forces outside of China. Chinese ships participating in the anti pirate campaign near Somalia are an example of that.

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Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Australia and China Secure Landmark Free Trade Deal

Wow! I am surprised.

This is great for the Austrian economy, and also helps China.

Australia and China Secure Landmark Free Trade Deal - The American Interest

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The Top 10 U.S. States Where Chinese Are Investing in Real Estate

I am surprised, I expected California to stop New York, especially by more than 400% . And I did not expect Illinois to be #3. Texas, due to it's high growth makes sense.


The Top 10 U.S. States Where Chinese Are Investing in Real Estate - WSJ

There is some correlation with the historic Chinatowns of the US:

Chinatowns of the United States and Canada - Childbook.com

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Harvard Sued for Asian Affirmative Action Discrimination


I am surprised this is taking so long to happen. There has been other complaints such as one I blogged about in 2008, but they did not seem to go anywhere. My guess by using a lawsuit, instead of a complaint there will be more impact.

So who is Project on Fair Representation that filed the suit? It was founded in 2005. They are also involved in Fisher v University of Texas, that the Supreme Court sent back to a lower court, but looks like it's coming back.

So what happened to similar type discrimination that was done to people who were Jewish to the Ivy League? When did that stop? Or has it stopped?

My 2 cents:

  1. Asians are being discriminated against through admission processes by looking at the whole life experience, and second looks at minority files, etc.
  2. The core issue should be figuring out why Asian students do better than other races in the US in college admissions, And it's not genetic, and since Asians are a minority, it's not due to historic discrimination issues since there is a long history of racial discrimination against Chinese in the US.|
  3. Make the required changes to help everyone achieve their full education potential. The high school drop out rate  among certain ethnic groups is a crime. I did my student teaching at a high school with a 60% drop out rate.
  4. Giving admissions to people without the skills to succeed to elite institutions, just results in a high failure rate. Or they change to majors that are not as hard. What has been seen in California through the end of affirmative action (theoretically) in admissions, is an increase in non Asian graduation as people go to a school appropriate to their skill level.

References:

Harvard sued over affirmative action policy in admissions - Boston Globe

Rejected Asian students sue Harvard over admissions that favor other minorities | Fox News

Do Asian-Americans Face Bias in Admissions at Elite Colleges? - NY Times 2012

Cheating: An Insider's Report on the Use of Race in Admissions at UCLA (TaxProfBlog)

The Dark Chain of Events to Your Kid's Ivy League Rejection - Bloomberg

Racism Against Chinese in the US - Timeline - Childbook.com

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Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Walnut Christian K-12 Campus sold to Buddhist

My daughter went to the school Preschool through 5th grade.

My understanding, was the campus was sold to a developer and the money was used to build a formal church in Brea. The developer was then unable to get the needed permits, I remember seeing protests in the area, plus the housing downturn in So. CA happened. Then, the campus went up for auction, and a Buddhist Group, Tzu Chi, bought the property and last year established a preschool at the location. This year, they put up a lot of signs on the property. The Christian School, Southlands Christian School, then leased an elementary school in Rowland Heights, Fajardo Elementary, added some classrooms, and are running two campus through the end of this year. At their Walnut campus, Christian students are not allowed to eat meat.


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China Loses Its Grip on Rare Earth Monopoly

I am surprised at this. The danger with any weapon, is once used, your enemies may seek alternatives. An example of this I worry about, is the use of sanctions again Russia. In this case, China used rare earths against Japan in 2010, and Japan found alternatives. Also supply and demand. When supply goes up in price, demand may go down, or their may be an increase in supply as other alternatives are developed.

A new example may be the Russian dominance of Titanium, that is used a lot by Boeing.

References:

China Loses Its Grip on Rare Earth Monopoly - The American Interest

Boeing, United Technologies stock up titanium parts from Russia: WSJ - Reuters

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China Development Bank

Interesting. The US gets a lot of soft power through it's leading role in the World Bank and Asian Development Bank. The danger for China, is bad investments as the USSR did, while competing with the US in investments. The Aswan Dam in Egypt comes to mind, that was built with Soviet support, and has issues.

China’s Plans for Development Bank Fall Short - WSJ
Many Targeted Countries Won’t Sign Preliminary Agreement in Beijing on Friday

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