This is the nineteenth episode in our ongoing Saturday series on eight+ things to read about China and a lot more. We constantly get emails from readers asking what to read on China and all sorts of things related and even barely related to China and this series is intended to constantly and consistently answer these questions.
As we said in our initial post on this, our plan is to list out eight (or so) articles we benefitted from reading and think you our readers would also benefit from reading, along with a very brief explanation as to why the particular article was included. More specifically:
The articles will likely include many on China and on Asia and a few on international trade, international politics, Spain and Latin America, economics and really just anything else we believe might benefit our readers or even that we just want people to read. We do not plan to choose articles that push our or any other political agenda or any other agenda for that matter, but having said that, we are not objective and our views may creep through. Our goal though is to focus on articles that are important or helpful or — most importantly — that make you think. Our posting of an article will NOT mean we agree with all of it or even any of it. Most of the articles will be from the week preceding the post but we will also sometimes throw in older articles (classics if you will) as well.
Please do not hesitate to comment at the end of this or any other post. We cannot tell you how much we appreciate your comments, good, bad and indifferent.
Here we go, in absolutely no particular order.
1. American siblings Victor and Cynthia Liu, barred from leaving China, are trapped, alone and desperate to come home. SCMP. Because what sort of country punishes the children for the alleged sin of a parent? Because exit bans and debt hostage situations are way, way, way more common than most realize. Because if you or your company might owe money to anyone in China, you should NOT go there. See China Debts and Layoffs and Hostage Situations.
2. China Markets to Test the Risk of Most Extreme U.S. Threat Yet. Bloomberg. Because the United States is talking about blocking Chinese companies from US stock exchanges. Because this would be a huge financial deal and only further accelerate US-China decoupling. Because way back in June, in China and the U.S. Stock Market: Nowhere to go, we predicted this would happen. Because it is at least a bit absurd that Chinese companies are allowed to list on U.S. stock exchanges when they don’t even pretend to comply with even the most basic financial oversight rules.
3. NFL veteran Vontae Davis quit the NFL midgame. Here’s what happened next. ESPN. Because this is a well-written and fascinating character piece. Because you have to know when to know when to hold ’em, know when to fold ’em, know when to walk away and know when to run. Because when you know you know. Because it’s sometimes best to just rip off the band aid.
4. The Game of Life: Visualizing China’s Social Credit System. Visual Capitalist. Because China’s social credit system is nearly certain to become the most pervasive intrusion on private life in history. Because China will be sticking a microscope into the arse of every foreign and domestic business as well and companies need to start wrestling with the implications of this. See China’s New Company Tracking System: Comply, Comply, Comply. Because China’s new director of cybersecurity publicly bragged about how the main goal of his ministry will be monitoring “every district, every ministry, every business and other institution, basically covering the whole society.” Because if your company has trade secrets in China, you might as well fuggetaboutit.
5. The emptiest Disneyland on Earth. CNN. Because tourists are avoiding Hong Kong like the plague and businesses are doing the same thing. Because the United States is on the verge of cracking down on Hong Kong and that will only accelerate American companies fleeing. Because Hong Kong is finished as an international business center. See Hong Kong for International Business: Stick a Fork in It.
6. The Polymath MBA: The Unconventional Path To Becoming A World-Class Knowledge Entrepreneur. Because it makes sense for some to hyper-specialize but it also makes sense for some to be polymaths. Because the value of an MBA is so often questioned these days. See Is an M.B.A. Still Worth It?
7. Marijuana Vape Sales Lag as Lung Illnesses Rise in US. US News and World Report. Because people are dying from vaping and one has to wonder why this is happening. Because Hilary Bricken (from my firm Harris Bricken) is quoted as saying that “the legal marijuana industry is moving so fast that many states are ‘literally making this up as they go,’ and the vaping scare has stripped away the sense of security consumers get from buying from a licensed dispensary.”
8. Hunter Biden’s Perfectly Legal, Socially Acceptable Corruption. Atlantic. Because so much of what is legally allowed in the United States smells like corruption and would be corruption in many other countries. See also THE College Cheating Scandal and Overseas Corruption: Not Worth It.
9. How Patagonia Grows Every Time It Amplifies Its Social Mission. Fast Company. Because Patagonia just so gets it.
10. The New American Homeless. New Republic. Because those who work hard ought not be homeless. Because I see more homeless people in a typical day in Seattle than I would see in a month when I lived in Madrid. Because Seattle has a median household income of nearly $95,000 and 12,500 of its population of 725,000 are homeless. Because Madrid has a median household income of around $45,000 and yet only 2,500 of its population of 3,100,000 are homeless. I single out Seattle and Madrid because I have lived in both places, but what I am really singling out is the United States as compared to most of the rest of the world. See also Bunk Beds Are Renting For $1,000 As The Housing Crisis Spins Out Of Control.
11. China: Foreign Nationals Must Register with Local Police within 24 Hours. Law and Border. Because this piece nicely sets out how to fulfill this requirement. Because this requirement used not to be such a big deal but with the need for foreigners and foreign businesses to fully comply with everything in China these days, it has become a big deal. See also How to Do Business in China Without Going to Prison.