Posts Tagged: China

Machine tool industry needs new public-private partnerships

Made in Germany

Government and industry need to team up to rebuild America’s machine-tool industry.  According to Justin Lahart in the Wall Street Journal, there is strong demand for expertly-machined parts here in America.  Backlogs and delays in obtaining special parts mean American manufacturers fall behind in orders and can’t compete as well globally.  We can and should fix this. (more…)

Electric cars from California and Ohio: a coda or an overture?

Coda EV

Just days after an announcement that Toyota is teaming up with electric car start-up Tesla Motors to produce electric cars, another small California electric car maker, Coda Automotive, announced it will bring 1,000 jobs to a new battery plant in Ohio if it can secure a federal loan from the Energy Department. (more…)

A testy toy recall

In 2007, a nine year-old Chicago boy died from inhaling a one-inch dart that was part of his toy gun.  Today the Consumer Product Safety Commission has finally reached an agreement with Family Dollar Stores Inc. to stop selling the “Auto Fire” toy. (more…)

Human Rights Front and Center

As James Fallows’ blog makes clear, President Obama’s human rights effort in China was more nuanced, and probably more successful, than people unfamiliar with China and Asia more generally can easily gauge.  The question is whether human rights have a permanent foothold in U.S. foreign policy. (more…)

Why Not Meet the Dalai Lama?

In 1975, President Gerald Ford declined to meet with Soviet dissident Alexander Solzhenitsyn, who was a vitally important symbol of freedom of thought in the USSR. Solzhenitsyn, exiled by the Soviet leadership in 1974, eventually settled in the U.S. Ford’s advisers suggested he avoid the Russian dissident to avoid offending Russia, with whom the U.S. was locked in difficult arms negotiations. Solzhenitsyn was no bomb-throwing radical, and he never called for overthrowing the Soviet state.

In 2009, according to John Pomfret in the Washington Post, President Barack Obama has declined to meet with the Dalai Lama, spiritual leader of Tibet. (more…)


The Chinese government’s primary overseas investment company, known as the China Investment Corp., or CIC, is looking to invest heavily in U.S. real estate. As the Wall Street Journal‘s Lingling Wei and Jason Dean report, the CIC may end up investing in toxic mortgages through the Treasury Department’s Public-Private Investment Program, known as PPIP, which until recently has been viewed as moribund and unable to attract investment.

These investments would come at a time when U.S. real estate prices may finally be ready to rebound, which means the Chinese government might get in on the ground floor. The scale of China’s investment in American houses — one expert says it could reach $20 billion by 2014 — may be explained not only by the good terms the USG is offering, but by another reality: China is tired of buying T-bonds. -NH


The New York Times‘ John Broder reports on Obama administration officials meeting with officials from China Sunday to discuss how the countries can work together to reduce global warming. As important as the cap-and-trade bill that just passed the House Energy and Commerce Committee is, U.S.-China cooperation is even more key to averting a climate disaster: China produces four times as much carbon dioxide emissions as the U.S. Unfortunately, the U.S. doesn’t think China is doing enough. Conversely, China says the U.S. is shirking responsibility:

As a measure of how far apart the two nations are, China says the United States should reduce its greenhouse gas emissions by 40 percent below 1990 levels by 2020. The bill before Congress, which could be further weakened, now calls for less than a 4 percent reduction over that period.

The negotiations will come to a head at a United Nations conference in Copenhagen this December to draw up an international global warming treaty. It will be interesting to see if Congress has passed a cap-and-trade bill by that time and also if the U.S. can inspire more confidence than it has so far as a sincere leader on climate change. One way to start would be for the Environmental Protection Agency to finally draw up regulations on carbon emissions.-MB