I'm in China this week and have had limited internet access (and time) to post while bouncing between meetings and cities. I'm here as a guest of the China-United States Exchange Foundation and traveling with a great group including MSNBC's Jonathan Alter; ThomsonReuters' new acquisition the kidnapping-defying David Rohde; National Public Radio's managing editor David Sweeney; and Daniel Gross, now at Yahoo Finance and author of one of the most fun and counter-intuitive books I have read on economic history, Pop! Why Bubbles are Great for the Economy.
I personally think that the US has overdone its bubbles and is now paying a heavy price -- but Gross's book is still a stimulating and important take on innovation and how it works.
There are probably significant economic bubbles embedded in China's political economy -- I just can't find them. Some argue that the entire country is a bubble, or a Ponzi scheme, that will collapse the moment China has a really bad year. Very few of the people we have met here have been able to navigate the question of what happens if the great numbers we keep having recited to us about improved water quality, more good air days, surging levels of year on year economic performance, more patents issued, all in accordance with primary targets in the 11th 5-year plan.