Chinese Tone Deafness

Evan Osnos evaluates the Chinese visit to America:

China has unveiled a sixty-second video titled “Experience China,” the national equivalent of an online-dating ad, projected on a series of whopping screens on Broadway. It will be shown fifteen times an hour, twenty hours a day for the next three weeks. The ad consists of a cycling series of images of China’s big names, including Yao Ming, Internet entrepreneur Robin Li, astronaut Yang Liwei, and pianist Lang Lang. That would be fine, but, regrettably, the images are paired with text that hails “Chinese Bravery,” “Chinese Space Travel,” Chinese Friendship,” and “Chinese Wealth.” At a moment when Americans are talking about little more than job growth, the latter, “Chinese Wealth,” has not been received in the spirit with which its sponsors intended, providing a reminder of how the two sides in this week of dinners and lunches still strain, and fail, to read each other’s emotional temperature.

Huang Hung also scoffs.