CSG news update -- 2007-06-21

From China Study Group <chinastudygroup@gmail.com>
Date Thu, 21 Jun 2007 02:00:40 -0700

China Study Group news update

More Inconvenient Truths
Village Voice | 2007-06-20
Jim Ridley
Nothing illustrates the monstrosity of globalized commerce more vividly than the lateral tracking shot that opens Jennifer Baichwal's mesmerizing documentary  Manufactured Landscapes. Maintaining a glacial, Kubrick-like creep for eight minutes of screen time, the camera glides almost a third of ...

University student in east China arrested for poisoning classmates
Xinhua | 2007-06-20
NANJING, June 20 (Xinhua) -- A university official in east China's Jiangsu province said on Wednesday that the student who poisoned his classmates with thallium bought the chemical from a plant based in southwest China's Sichuan Province.      The student, surnamed Chang and a freshman at ...

Floods kill 36 in southwest China
Business Week | 2007-06-20
Floods and landslides triggered by heavy rain have killed 36 people and left 13 missing in southwest and central China, state media reported Wednesday.  The deaths are in addition to the 128 who died last week from flooding in other parts of southern China.  Xinhua News Agency said the latest de...

Mafia Head Driving Armored Vehicle for Fun on the Streets of Tangshan
China Digital Times | 2007-06-20
Xiao Qiang 
In Chinese, the literal translation for mafia is "Black Society" which means: underground society. But a recent such case in Tangshan city, revealed in the Chinese media, is not so "underground." According to Chinese People's Rule of Law Net, police in Hebei province just announced that they are...

China's "professional noses" sniff out polluters
Reuters | 2007-06-20
 BEIJING (Reuters) - An environmental monitoring station in southern China is recruiting people with keen noses to sniff out foul gases in the atmosphere and provide more accurate readings of air quality.  A team of 11 "professional noses" at a monitoring station in Panyu, an industrial town in th...

Blocked China Web users rage against Great Firewall
Reuters | 2007-06-20
BEIJING (Reuters) - Yang Zhou is no cyberdissident, but recent curbs on his Web surfing habits by China's censors have him fomenting discontent about China's "Great Firewall." ADVERTISEMENT  Yang's fury erupted a few days ago when he found he could not browse his friend's holiday ...

U.S. opposes Taiwan's referendum bid for UN membership
People's Daily | 2007-06-20
The United States said Tuesday that it opposes an attempt by the leader of Taiwan to hold a referendum on whether to join the United Nations under the name of Taiwan, saying that such a move could change the status quo unilaterally and increase tensions in the Taiwan Strait.  "The United States op...

China, Arab countries vow to deepen economic cooperation
People's Daily | 2007-06-20
The second China-Arab Business Conference concluded in Amman on Tuesday, during which the officials and entrepreneurs discussed bilateral cooperation, vowing to further enhance cooperation in the fields of economy, trade and investment.  In the "Amman Document" launched at the end of the conferenc...

China: World's No. 1 Greenhouse Gas Emitter?
China Digital Times | 2007-06-19
Zhaohua Li
It seems so. A Dutch think tank today released figures showing China beat the United States, the globe's reining climate change offender, in a 2006 tally of carbon dioxide production. The score: 6.2 billion tons for China to 5.8 billion for the U.S.  If this is true, China's impact on clim...

As More Toys Are Recalled, Trail Ends in China
New York Times | 2007-06-19
WASHINGTON, June 18  China manufactured every one of the 24 kinds of toys recalled for safety reasons in the United States so far this year, including the enormously popular Thomas & Friends wooden train sets, a record that is causing alarm among consumer advocates, parents and regulators. T...

China's smog + power demand = sales opportunity
MarketWatch | 2007-06-19
Laura Mandaro
AN FRANCISCO (MarketWatch) -- It would be a pity not to see the javelin throw on account of the smog. Just a year before thousands of athletes and tourists descend on Beijing for the 2008 Summer Olympics, China's government recently vowed to crack down on its air pollution. In the next three y...

Gap wider between rich and poor
The Standard | 2007-06-19
Damon Pang and Mimi Lau
The wealth gap between the rich and poor has widened further with the overall Gini coefficient, representing income disparity, at its highest since the figures were recorded.  But in an attempt to play down concerns, Commissioner for Census and Statistics Fung Hing-wang maintained Monday the coeff...

Capitalism with Special Chinese Characteristics
Yale Global | 2007-06-19
Gustav Ranis
On the surface, China's fast-growing economy looks superb. However, growing income inequality and the massive inflow of foreign funds can pose problems that often go unrecognized. International economics professor Gustav Ranis categorizes China's economic problems as a type of "Dutch Disease...

Food and fuel needs compete in China
Financial Times | 2007-06-19
Robin Kwong
Eight years ago, China's technocrats came up with an idea for what to do with the government's vast stockpile of corn reserves, a stockpile that was going stale.  The plan was to transform the corn into starch, sweeteners or ethanol, which could be blended with gasoline to run cars. The mo...

Expanding Deserts Hurts Farmers in China
Washington Post | 2007-06-19
ZHENGXIN, China -- Half a century after Mao Zedong's "Great Leap Forward" brought irrigation to the arid grasslands in this remote corner of northwest China, the government is giving up on its attempt to make a breadbasket out of what has increasingly become a stretch of scrub and sand dunes. ...