This is a great podcast from Planet Money, an offshoot of This American Life on NPR. In this podcast they provide a brief description of life in communist China and discuss the development of capitalism in China's economy. Pay specific attention to why the farmers in this story decided to meet, what solution they came up with to solve their hunger problems, and what the reaction was by Chinese government officials.
In your opinion, could the farmers plan be applied to any other industry but farming? Can a system like that developed by the farmers in this story truly exist within a communist economy long term?
As we will see, the way an economy operates from country to country can vary greatly. One of the key facets to this variation is economic freedom. In fact, many argue that freedom is the means by which progress is achieved. This article talks about how Twitter is planning to deal with these cross country differences. What do you suppose will be the impact of Twitter adopting this technology? Similar to the previous article that concerned China, is Twitter obligated to conform to American standards? Or, should they have the freedom to censor and pursue wider markets?
Recent talks in Washington are leaning toward free trade restrictions against China. The argument behind such a move is in response to the Chinese currency, the Yuan, being held below its equilibrium value (price ceiling anyone?) Consider the argument for trade restrictions from our point of view, supply and demand. If there is a restriction in the demand for Chinese goods, less Chinese currency will be demanded (compliments - you can't buy Chinese goods without "Chinese dollars"). What do you forecast will happen to the price of the Yuan, aka the exchange rate, when demand decreases? Could you show this using a supply and demand graph? In what way will trade restrictions affect other currency prices?
atleast the Chinese government says so. Officially the saying is, "Genius comes from hard work - Tobacco helps you become talented" and it's written on the gate of many elementary schools. The reason this is scrawled across the opening gates is because many schools are sponsered by the state-owned tobacco-company. Here's an article and short audo clip (about 4 minutes) about how the government-run industry affects the people of China. Relating this article to te previous North Korea article, how do the policies of contorol for each government contrast? Could you provide an argument defending China's stance on tobacco in society?
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