Friday, May 15, 2009

In case I'm taken captive by the Communists...

Arrive May 17th (Sunday)

May 18th (Monday)
Check in QianMen JianGuo Hotel

May 19th (Tuesday)
Free day
Casual dinner, 7:30pm. Meet in the lobby, if interested, at 7:00pm.

May 20th (Wednesday)
Breakfast at your leisure.
9:00- 10:00am Meet at hotel for orientation and introduction lecture by Dr. Lu Wei, Assistant Dean of USTC School of Management
10:15am City Tour of Tian’an Men Square, The Arch Building (go up to the ceremony level), The Forbidden City
3:00pm Late Lunch
The Heaven Temple, and Bird’s Nest and Water Cube
Evening: Free (Suggested: Attend Chinese Acrobatic Performance or Peking Opera).

May 21st (Thursday)
Breakfast at your leisure.
9:00-10:30, 10:30- 12:30 Classes at Tsinghua University (the Harvard of China).
Lectures on the Environment, the Current State of the Economy, and Labor issues.
12:30-1:30pm Lunch on campus and quick tour
3:00-6:00pm Visit to the US Embassy
Evening: Group Dinner at Peking Duck Restaurant

May 22nd (Friday)
Charted Tour to Great Wall and Summer Palace.
(on the return bus ride: Reactions and Discussion on the first week)
Evening: Free

May 23rd (Saturday)
Morning flight to Hong Kong (CO#110 8am to 11:30AM) and check into Hotel.
Hong Kong: Regal Kowloon Hotel
Address: 71 Mody Road, Tsimshatsui, Hong Kong
Tel: HK +852 27221818 Call
Evening: Free
Meet up with May Chen! Go clubbing - Prive, DragonEye(DI), Volar, and Homebase

May 24th (Sunday)
Morning: Half day tour of Hong Kong with shopping
Evening: Free
Meet up with Nicole Alpert with the Lion Rock Institute

May 25th (Monday)
Early Morning flight to Hefei (MU#5032 10:55AM to 12:55AM) Check into hotel:
Hefei: Novotel Hefei, 0086-551-2286688; Address: 199, Wu hu Rd. Hefei, Anhui Province,
Afternoon: Classes at USTC (the MIT of China). Lecture on Entrepreneurship (Sino-American Comparative Study) or Carbon Emission Trading with USTC graduate students, Q&A and discussions
Evening: Dinner with students and Karaoke

May 26th (Tuesday)
Early morning departure to visit a local primary school (have some pencils etc. as gifts to pupils)
Afternoon: Visit City Hall of Hefei and meet senior officials lecture on Hefei Development Policy by Mr. Sheng Zhigang, Vice Mayor.
Visit Baogong Temple ( Baogong is the most uncorrupted official in the Chinese history, “Baogong” is now the Pronoun for uncorrupted official in China)
Early evening: Visit a huge labor intensive company (over 9000 workers)

May 27th (Wednesday)
Early Flight to Shanghai (DS477 8:24AM to 11:31AM). Check into hotel:
Shanghai: Hengsheng Peninsula International Hotel, 0086-21-65205888; Address: 205,Wu song Rd. Shanghai, China
City Tour and shopping
Evening: Free
Clubs May Recommends: Bling, Bloc(Volar), M1nt, and Muse

May 28th (Thursday)
Morning: Lecture by Audrey Zook and Peter Ballenger on Political Risk
Afternoon: Visit to the Nick Factory
Evening: Free

May 29th (Friday)
9:00- 10:30am Visit to Shanghai Stock Exchange, briefing by Dr. Liu Xiaodong and witness listing of new company
1:00- 3:00pm Visit to Shanghai Media Group, The first Financial and Economic Channel and News Dream Factory, Briefing and Q&A hosted by senior officials of SMG, The biggest across media group in China, owns many TV channels, radio and newspapers
Evening: Cruise on Huang Pu River and farewell dinner

May 30th (Saturday)
Visit to USTC Shanghai Campus. Classes with USTC Graduate Students. Final wrap-up session.
(We will need to depart the Shanghai campus in the early afternoon, so the group can have some final free time in Shanghai).

May 31st (Sunday)
Check-out and Individual Departure

Monday, May 11, 2009

What kids are being taught these days...

I was relatively on board with the graphics and logic behind the "Story of Stuff" video until about minute two when she depicts corporations as these fat balloon people who force governments to shine their shoes. Yeah, I'm not joking. The woman presents this anti-capitalist b.s. as factual and it has been played in over 7,000 classrooms already and has over 5 million youtube hits.

I don't want kids to be overly materialistic, but I don't want them to vilify the capitalist system that enables us to enjoy arguably the greatest standard of living in the world. And unfortunately, I don't know how you can unpack all the liberal bias in a comprehensible way to kids after they see this video. Hopefully most teachers are presenting this as a basis for discussion, but most kids can't think critically about presentation bias until high school and even then they'll take most stuff at face value. This stuff scares me!

Friday, May 8, 2009

Forget a free lunch - how about NO lunch!

Ok, this might just be funny if you're from D.C., but here's a funny commentary on Obama and Biden eating at the highly regarded Rey's Hell Burgers in Arlington, VA on Tuesday. My fave part:
Is this going to be a trend, I asked myself? In an effort to connect with all us "normals," are the bigwigs going to make a habit of this? Is Nancy Pelosi gonna take her staff to Pollo Rico for some yuca fries? Is Arlen Spector going to announce his switch back to the Republicans while popping peanuts at Five Guys? Is Justice Antonin Scalia going to finally come out of the closet while standing at the counter at Julias Empanadas? That place just can't hold that many people, Your Honor!

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Is school choice dead in D.C.?

I've written before about my passion for school choice and in D.C. in particular. It looks like Obama is effectively killing the program - via Reason:
Yet working with congressional Democrats and despite his pledge to put politics and ideology aside in education, the Obama administration has effectively killed the program through a backdoor legislative move. "[Education] Secretary [Arne] Duncan will use only one test in what ideas to support with your precious tax dollars," says the president. "It's not whether it's liberal or conservative, but whether it works."
hat tip: Kara