Saturday, June 29, 2013

315. Power and Restraint: A Shared Vision for the U.S.-China Relationship

Some well-known professors and writers have quoted Dr. Dave Wang' research. With this post I introduce a famous book, Power and Restraint: A Shared Vision for the U.S.-China Relationship edited by Richard N. Rosecrance, Gu Guoliang, Hardcover: 272 pages Publisher: Public Affairs; (March 2, 2009). According to the introduction to this book we know that this book is the result of many year's research by some distinguished Chinese and American scholars. This project was sponsored by the China–U.S. Exchange Foundation (USEF).

The papers in this book include many subjects from politics, economics, international security, to environmental studies. The authors discussed some important issues, such as global warming, trade relations, Taiwan, democratization, WMDs and bilateral humanitarian intervention. About the Author Richard Rosecrance is Adjunct Professor in Public Policy at the Harvard Kennedy School, Research Professor of Political Science at the University of California, and Senior Fellow in the Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs.

The author of The Rise of the Virtual State lives in Lexington, Massachusetts. Gu Guoliang is Senior Research Fellow and Deputy Director of the Institute of the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences. From 1990 to 1995, he worked as Counselor of the Chinese Delegation to the UN Conference on Disarmament in Geneva. He established the Center for Arms Control and Nonproliferation Studies in 1998 and has acted as the Director of the Center since. He is also the Council Member of the Chinese Association of Arms Control and Disarmament. A reader will find that the book quotes Dr. Dave Wang' paper, Benjamin Franklin and China in page 213.

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

314. Benjamin Franklin Told German Should Learn the Art of Fire Management From China

In Benjamin Franklin's eyes, the Germans are "very ingenious in the management of fire." However, the Germans should learn from the Chinese in this area. On August 28, 1785, Franklin who was at the sea wrote a letter to Jan Ingenhousz, in the following please enjoy the quote from the letter: In Germany you are happy in the Use of Stoves which saves Fuel wonderfully: Your People are very ingenious in the Management of Fire; but they may still learn something in that Art from the Chinese, whose Country being greatly populous and fully cultivated, has little room left for the Growth of Wood, and having not much other Fuel that is good, have been forc’d upon many Inventions during a Course of Ages, for making a little Fire go as far as possible.

The above quote shows that Franklin realized that the Chinese made their efforts to protect the environment by preventing trees from being cut down. The above paragraph also reminds me of that We should deepen our understanding of Franklin Stove's significance.

We usually talk about the fact that Franklin invented his stove for the purpose of warming houses in the cold winters for the colonists in the Northeast of North America. However, Franklin had a more important agenda in his mind when he borrowed technologies from China to created his stove. Franklin wanted to save trees in order to preserve environment.

Sunday, June 2, 2013

313. Ginseng and the Founders' Efforts to Maintain Independence

One day in the mid-seventeenth century some Chinese soldiers of the Qing Dynasty (1644-1911) started to build a Willow Palisade along the entire south boundary of Northeast China. The Willow Palisade was built under the order of Emperor Shunzhi (1644-1661) to discourage Ginseng diggers from other parts of China to search for Ginseng in the region. Emperor Shunzhi and his soldiers never thought that their action had an impact on the effort of the United States to win a place in international trade.

After seven years of severe fighting against the British Empire, the colonists in the North America won their formal independence. In 1783 the British signed the Treaty of Pariswith the colonial representatives. The colonists celebrated and enjoyed their hard won victory. However, the hilarious feeling of victory was quickly shadowed by economic difficulties. The economy did not go along with the political victory, but marched towards the opposite direction.

Depression and inflation seemed to grab the happy feeling away from the founding fathers and the fighters of the Revolutionary War. Britain, which had just lost the war, was trying hard to win the colonists over through economic coercion. All old trade routes were forced to close to the Americans. Britain adopted the strategy of seeking to put enough economic pressure on individual states to force them, one by one, to “return to Mother England.” Please read Dr. Dave Wang's Paper, Ginseng: the Herb that Helped the United States to Enter International Commerce

Saturday, June 1, 2013

312. David Brooks, Chinese Brands and the China Trade

China brands have been popular in North America. However, I was surprised when I read David Brook’s article, The Romantic Advantage, in New York Times, May 31, 2013. According to David, 94 percent of Americans cannot name even a single brand from China, the world’s second-largest economy. David forgot the basic fact that Chinese brands were well-known in North America even before the United States was established.

It is difficult to figure out the percentage about the Americans who could name how many brands from China during the founding era of the United States. However, it is safe to say that Chinese products were very attractive to the Americans in the 18th century. The founders and the revolutionary veterans certainly knew products from China were widely welcomed when they sent to China the first commercial ship, The Empress of China, on February 22, 1784. The fact that the Chinese goods brought back by the ship were sold out quickly proves the above statement.