Gongol.com Archives: September 2014

Brian Gongol

September 6, 2014

Socialism Doesn't Work China takes a step back on democracy in Hong Kong
"[O]nly candidates approved by a nominating committee" (composed of mostly loyalists to the mother state) will be allowed to run for the job of Hong Kong Chief Executive. That's not democracy -- it's selection from a restricted menu. And if that's how they're treating Hong Kong, which is supposed to be under a whole other system from mainland China ("one country, two systems"), then they certainly have no intentions of loosening political control over the rest of the nation. It should not escape our attention that China is making bad choices on the political front (by tightening, rather than liberalizing), and on the economic one as well. Just one example: China's been harassing Japanese auto manufacturers (specifically Toyota and Honda) both officially and unofficially, meanwhile buying into control of European automakers like Peugot. Not that Peugot is necessarily a bad automaker, but Toyota and Honda are much better -- and they actually would have something to teach their Chinese partners. The Chinese system as we know it cannot go on forever -- and when it falls apart, it's going to be a global mess.

The United States of America The nation's hardest and easiest places to live
Based on health, income, and education factors, the Upper Midwest looks pretty fantastic overall in a New York Times analysis.

Iowa Hard Rock Casino in Sioux City brought in $7.2 million for its first month
That appears to be their net revenues from gambling, before expenses.

News Latest poll puts pro-independence group a hair ahead in Scotland
September 18th is coming fast -- and then we'll know whether Great Britain is going to remain a union including the Scots. Funny how a sense of disillusionment with centralized government (Washington, London, Brussels...) is universal.

Business and Finance Reviving a cultural mascot
WGN Radio is reviving a cartoon bird named "Chicago" as its station mascot, and bringing it to life all over the place, including with a Twitter account (@wgnbirdchicago). Quite a contrast with companies that spend all kinds of money acquiring others and then eliminating their brands altogether (thus erasing the value of all of the goodwill for which they had paid in the first place).

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