Recovering from a Beating by Mother Nature – Part 4/4

June 27, 2011

If you are interested in the challenges China faces from mother nature, I suggest visiting the Asian Disaster Reduction Center Site (ADRC) to discover that China has survived earthquakes, extreme climate changes, floods, storms, storm surges, forest fires, drought, insect damage, landslides and slope failure.

In particular, earthquakes, droughts and cyclones have caused major damage.

In fact, China is one of the countries most affected by natural disasters, which occur frequently affecting more than 200 million people every year and these disasters have become an important restricting factor for economic and social development. Between 108 BC and 1911 AD there were no fewer than 1,828 major famines in China, or one nearly every year in one or another province.

In addition, the 2008 Sichuan earthquake has continued the country’s revision of their disaster relief plans. One year after the earthquake, the government announced its continued efforts to improve disaster response. A white paper published on the anniversary details plans to increase the state-level storage facilities for relief materials, such as tents, blankets, medicines and rescue devices, from 10 to 24 so that China may react faster to deal with another serious disaster.


American Red Cross – China Earthquake: One Year Later

On May 12, 2011, according to the Pakistan Defense Website (I couldn’t find this information from a Western media source), China’s expenditures and reconstruction efforts since the Sichuan earthquake have cost 885.15 billion yuan, which was 92.37% of the overall rebuilding budget.

Also reported was, “China’s first earthquake museum was opened in Sichuan. It covers 140,000 square meters, and is made up of six theme sections with 270 exhibits and 559 photos.”

“In Sichuan alone,” Pakistan Defense said, “nearly 3,000 schools, 1,000 hospitals and more than 5 million homes have been built or renovated, according to Wei Hong, executive vice-governor of Sichuan province.”

Before condemning China for the schools that collapsed during the Sichuan earthquake, do not forget that the US has allowed nearly 400,000 people to live in the potential path of death and destruction from Mount Rainier, which has been labeled American’s most dangerous volcano. Source: KOMO News

Jesus Christ said, “Let he who is without sin cast the first stone.”

Return to Recovering from a Beating by Mother Nature – Part 3 or start with Part 1

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Lloyd Lofthouse is the award-winning author of the concubine saga, My Splendid Concubine & Our Hart. When you love a Chinese woman, you marry her family and culture too.

To subscribe to “iLook China”, look for the “Subscribe” button at the top of the screen in the menu bar, click on it then follow directions.


Recovering from a Beating by Mother Nature – Part 1/4

June 24, 2011

Man has little power to stop the damage and loss of property and life caused by the power of blizzards, earthquakes, floods, forest fires, hurricanes, tsunamis, tornadoes, and volcanic eruptions such as the famous one from Mount St. Helens in 1980 that blew down or scorched 230 square miles of forest or the dangers of Mount Rainier, which could kill thousands and cause billions in damage in less than an hour if it erupted as it has many times in the past.

However, governments from countries such as the US and China, the two largest economies on the planet, do have an ability to recover faster from the damage caused by one of these devastating blows from nature than many countries do.

On March 11, 2011, much of the world witnessed the horrible tragedy in Japan as an undersea earthquake caused the Tsunami that hit Japan resulting in much death and destruction.

Then in May 2011, Americans witnessed on the news or experienced how powerful nature is as more than a thousand tornadoes roared through the Midwest flattening American towns and cities while causing much destruction and more loss of life.

In this series, I will write about the recovery efforts in Sichuan, China, where a devastating 8.0 earthquake struck in May 2008 and about the thousands that lost their lives while millions were made homeless. I will compare China’s recovery to New Orleans from Hurricane Katrina, which hit the US Gulf Coast in August 2005, and Haiti’s recovery from its devastating January 2010 earthquake that killed about 300,000.

In fact, I spent hours hunting for the information I was interested in, which was a comparison of the recovery efforts from the 2005 Hurricane Katrina and the Sichuan earthquake of 2008.

What I learned may surprise some people that pay too much attention to Western Media sources such as FOX, CNN or The New York Times. Sometimes what we don’t learn is more revealing than what is reported.

Continued on June 25, 2011 in  Recovering from a Beating by Mother Nature – Part 2

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Lloyd Lofthouse is the award-winning author of the concubine saga, My Splendid Concubine & Our Hart. When you love a Chinese woman, you marry her family and culture too.

To subscribe to “iLook China”, look for the “Subscribe” button at the top of the screen in the menu bar, click on it then follow directions.


Automation Nation

June 15, 2011

There are sound economic reasons why jobs are vanishing in the US.

Economically speaking, to remain competitive, manufacturing companies must reduce their overhead, and lower product cost to the consumer.

The problem with lost jobs in the US is the politics, which stirs up a storm of ignorance when the blame is put in the wrong place. Due to politics, when jobs in the US are farmed out to foreign workers, American workers scream bloody murder and blame China, India or Japan.

Then recently, I read a piece from the Daily Ticker “Made in America”: The Comeback that revealed (without meaning to) the real reason so many jobs have been lost and may never come back even if China, India and Japan vanished tomorrow.

The Daily Ticker said, “Since 1972, U.S. manufacturing output has risen nearly 2.5 times, according to Boston Consulting Group (BCG)…. However, U.S. manufacturing employment has fallen nearly 25% in the same period.”

If American manufacturing output has risen nearly 250% since the 1970s, and the population only increased by 50%, why has manufacturing employment fallen nearly 25%?

The answer is “automation”. If you want to learn more, watch the two embedded videos.

In addition, today 80% of the work force in the U.S. is employed in the service sector. This sector, like manufacturing, is threatened by not only cheap labor overseas but automation technology as well.

Even if the manufacturing sector were to increase in the United States, human labor would still be replaced by automation technology.

Soon, there will be only the wealthy and the machines that serve and pamper them. The rest of of us will be obsolete. What do you think will happen to the unemployed then?

Instead of getting angry at workers in other countries, shoot a machine. Then after cooling down, discover the reasons low and/or unskilled labor jobs have gone overseas or have been automated.

One of those reasons is the three kinds of illiteracy.

Low and/or unskilled jobs that do not require literacy are easy to move overseas where there are hundreds of millions living in severe poverty willing to work for much less than most workers in the US.

“The United States Department of Education estimates that functional illiteracy, incompetence in such basic functions as reading, writing, and mathematics, plagues 24 million Americans. Thirteen percent of American seventeen-year-olds are illiterate, according to a recent issue of Time; the estimate for minority youth is an astonishing forty percent.

Then there is cultural illiteracy — “To be culturally literate is to possess the basic information needed to thrive in the modern world.”

The third is moral illiteracy.  “In generations past, parents were more diligent in passing on their principles and values to their children and were assisted by churches and schools which emphasized religious and moral education. In recent years, in contrast, our society has become increasingly secular and the curriculum of the public schools has been denuded of almost all ethical content.” Source: Reformed.org

Discover The End of Cheap Labor from China

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Lloyd Lofthouse is the award-winning author of the concubine saga, My Splendid Concubine & Our Hart. When you love a Chinese woman, you marry her family and culture too.

To subscribe to “iLook China”, look for the “Subscribe” button at the top of the screen in the menu bar, click on it then follow directions.


China Protecting its Teeth in 1950 Korea– Part 1/9

February 22, 2011

While searching Google for a Monroe Doctrine link, I stumbled on PCMS Social Studies and a post that appeared January 20, 2011.

Quote: “The Monroe Doctrine was put in place on December 2, 1823 by (President) James Monroe….   He did not want European Countries coming back and taking over the United States….  I know that I would definitely not want someone telling me I have to change the way I believe.”

China’s reaction was the same in 1950 when the People’s Liberation Army entered the Korean War.

Because Korea sat precariously between China, Russia and Japan, Korea had always been at the mercy of its bigger neighbors. For centuries, those nations had fought each other in Korea.

As World War II was ending, in July 1945, Soviet leader Joseph Stalin used his troops in coordination with the US to force the Japanese out of Korea. The Soviet and US armies met at the 38th parallel and agreed to divide Korea along that line.

The Soviets would control the northern half of Korea and the US the south.

While Soviet Russia and America were dividing the spoils of war in Europe and Asia, China was involved in a bloody civil war between the Communist and Nationalist Parties that would last until 1949

Prior to Japan occupying Korea in 1900, Korea had been a tributary state of China for centuries. However, China was in no shape to protest what Russia and the US was doing in Korea.

Two years later, the super powers left Korea leaving behind a Communist state in the north and a capitalist republic in the south ruled by a Korean authoritarian dictator educated at America’s Princeton University.

On June 5, 1950 at 4:00 AM, the Korean War started when North Korea declared war and invaded South Korea by land and sea.

Since the US had deprived South Korea of weapons and ammunition in fear that the south might invade the north and start a war, the North Korean army met little resistance.

The US strategy of restraint had backfired. South Korea had no weapons to defend itself. In two days, Seoul, the capital of South Korea fell to the invading army.

North Korea counted on America doing nothing. However, the majority of Americans in the US was outraged and demanded action, which caused President Truman to send in the United States air force while the US Navy bombarded Korea from the sea.

On July 19, 1950, President Truman called on the United Nations to act quickly and stop the aggression of Communist North Korea.

In the beginning, the US army was weak and far from Korea mostly in Europe. The huge American army that won World War II in 1945 had been disbanded resulting in a much smaller force.

In early July, 1950, an American brigade entered Korea and fought North Korean troops thirty miles south of South Korea’s captured capital of Seoul. The first battle didn’t go well for the US.

Learn about The Lips Protecting China’s Teeth

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Lloyd Lofthouse is the award-winning author of the concubine saga, My Splendid Concubine & Our Hart. When you love a Chinese woman, you marry her family and culture too.

If you want to subscribe to iLook China, there is a “Subscribe” button at the top of the screen in the menu bar.


Keeping the Rare Earths in China

October 1, 2010

At one time, it must have seemed like a good idea to allow China to process 90% of the earth’s supply for rare earth oxides/metals.

After all, rare earths are dangerous and costly to extract and the extraction methods used in China are highly toxic. The Economist reports that there have been horror stories about poisoned water supplies.

The thinking around the world must have been, “Better that China wrecks its environment than us.”


The Other Side of the Story

These rare earth-based metals are important in manufacturing sophisticated products such as flat-screen monitors, hybrid and electric-car batteries, wind turbines, aerospace alloys and high-tech weapons, which the U.S. needs to fight wars.

Then China became angry when Japan arrested a Chinese fishing boat captain whose trawler collided with a Japanese patrol boat in contested waters.

What China did to force the Japanese to do what China wanted caused the rest of the world to sit up.

China shut off the supply of rare earths to Japan.

A report from Reuters by Julie Gordon says this caused companies that depend on rare earths to struggle to secure a supply. It also woke up the rest of the world—a lesson learned that you don’t keep all the eggs in a basket that you don’t own.

See Hitting Endless Home Runs

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Lloyd Lofthouse is the award-winning author of The Concubine Saga. When you love a Chinese woman, you marry her family and culture too. This is the love story Sir Robert Hart did not want the world to discover.

To subscribe to “iLook China”, look for the “Subscribe” button at the top of the screen in the menu bar, click on it then follow directions