Just after the streets of Tunisia and Egypt erupted, China saw a series of “Jasmine” protests—until the government stopped them cold. Its methods were subtler than they had been at Tiananmen Square, and more insidious. Was the regime’s defensive reaction just paranoia? Or is the Chinese public less satisfied—and more combustible—than it appears?
To environmentalists, “clean coal” is an insulting oxymoron. But for now, the only way to meet the world’s energy needs, and to arrest climate change before it produces irreversible cataclysm, is to use coal—dirty, sooty, toxic coal—in more-sustainable ways. The good news is that new technologies are making this possible. China is now the leader in this area, the Google and Intel of the energy world. If we are serious about global warming, America needs to work with China to build a greener future on a foundation of coal. Otherwise, the clean-energy revolution will leave us behind, with grave costs for the world’s climate and our economy.
Confessions of a fake businessman from Beijing
All across Africa, new tracks are being laid, highways built, ports deepened, commercial contracts signed—all on an unprecedented scale, and led by China, whose appetite for commodities seems insatiable. Do China’s grand designs promise the transformation, at last, of a star-crossed continent? Or merely its exploitation?
Our man in Beijing returns home, with lungs only somewhat the worse for wear.
In Yunnan province, two Americans struggle to save an ancient town from kitsch.
The Opposite House is an idealistic island in a country that rarely worries about details
Idle factories, moored container ships, widespread bankruptcies, massive migration back to the hinterlands, strangely clean air—the signs of depression are everywhere in China. Because it makes so many of the goods the world isn’t buying now, China stands to be worse hit than the rest of the world —just as America was during the Depression, when it was the world’s sweatshop. But like America then, China will use tough times to design innovative products that will get it the high profits and the high-value jobs Americans kept to themselves for decades. And that is very bad news for the United States, unless it uses tough times to reinvent itself, too.
In his first interview since the world financial crisis, Gao Xiqing, the man who oversees $200 billion of China’s $2 trillion in dollar holdings, explains why he’s betting against the dollar, praises American pragmatism, and wonders about enormous Wall Street paychecks. And he has a friendly piece of advice:
AS CHINA PREPARES to take its place as the world’s dominant power, it faces confounding obstacles: its insularity and sheer stupidity in delivering the genuine good news about its own progress.
Two idealistic Taiwanese businessmen happened into the most rural part of China and thought: Let’s bring it from the 15th century to the 21st.
Why smoggy skies over Beijing represent the world’s greatest environmental opportunity
China’s Great Firewall is crude, slapdash, and surprisingly easy to breach. Here’s why it’s so effective anyway.
The Chinese are subsidizing the American way of life. Are we playing them for suckers—or are they playing us?
Our cub reporter exposes China’s soft underbelly.
Even as foreign investors pour billions into ever-glitzier casinos, the tiny peninsula’s bid to become the Vegas of the Orient depends on China’s larger willingness to embrace transparency and the rule of law.
A look inside the world’s manufacturing center shows that America should welcome China’s rise—for now.
Jin Luxian’s 50-year struggle to keep Catholicism alive in China, balance Rome and Beijing, and build a Church for “100 million Catholics”
A reality-TV show is teaching the Chinese how to succeed in business.
A singing workforce, Mongolian millionaires in Porsches, and saving the planet—inside the empire of a Chinese tycoon with more than money on his mind
Our man in Shanghai samples budget beer, survives subway scrimmages, and starts living the contradictions of China’s breakneck modernization