Archive for the ‘China’ tag
A bit old news, but as I’ve said I’m a big map fan. The Washington Post has a very cool map of the countries that are more favorable to either the US or China. Some notes:
- Pakistan’s strong favor for China wasn’t something I’d have immediately guessed. It makes sense that there are few fans of the US there, but I wonder if low-level India-China tensions push them further in that direction.
- In South America, Venezuela’s favor for China doesn’t surprise me. Argentina’s does a little.
- All Israeli neighbors seem to prefer China. If Israel didn’t exist I feel like that might be different.
- Western Europe’s favor for the US is largely predictable, but why the favor slips toward China in Greece and Turkey isn’t obvious to me.
Comments are open, if you have any other notes, or explanations to some of mine.
I’d always wanted this map but not realized it. This map plots the difference between the exact time of solar noon and when the clock registers it. China’s rather famously off for enforcing Beijing time throughout the country, but Eastern Russia is actually as bad and worse — which I’d never have guessed.
(via /r/MapPorn, where there’s a pretty good discussion of it as well)
EDIT (28 Feb 2014): Added link to source, found via Kottke.
Aside from telling an interesting story of how the Chinese government has nurtured it’s own flourishing film industry and adding a few more Chinese movies to my Netflix queue, Grady Hendrix’s piece includes this sentence:
The film [If You Are the One] has a cameo by Hitler, a suicide, some savage scenes of heartbreak, an ending that is qualified at best, and lots of jokes about Obama, the weak American dollar, and the current economic crisis.
In discussing the results and ramifications of China’s “one-child” policy, William Saletan revealed a fact I’d not known:
The government is very aware of the problem and has openly expressed concerns about the consequences of large numbers of excess men for societal stability and security. As early as 2000 the government launched a range of policies to specifically counter the sex imbalance, the “care for girls” campaign. This includes changes in laws in areas such as inheritance by females, as well as an educational campaign to promote gender equality. These measures have had some success, with reports of lower sex ratios at birth in targeted localities.
The result appears to have been a drop in the imbalance from 124 boys per 100 girls to 119.
This chart is impeccably executed.
While explaining that “motherfucker” is a popular insult worldwide,
Anthropologists note that, across cultures, the most severe insults tend to involve a few basic themes: your opponent’s family, your opponent’s religion, sex, and scatology.
No part of that really surprises me, but I’d just like to congratulate anyone who gets paid to discover stuff like this.
The Economist — I need to start perusing that again — is only printed in English. But some enterprising Chinese crowd-source the translation of every issue and privately release it as a PDF.
Interestingly, after Andy Baio published the story on his site, the New York Times asked him to rework it and published it in the paper. The future of reporting, anyone?
You’ve probably seen this set from The Big Picture by now, but that’s never stopped me before.
If, like me, you had no idea what melamine is or why it was such a bad thing to find in Chinese milk, I suggest this Tech.view column (for that, and a whole lot more):
Melamine is used to make durable work-surfaces for kitchen cabinets and bathroom furniture, and is formed into heat-resistant jugs, bowls, dinnerware, and other household items. To be accurate, such products are made not from melamine, but from melamine resin—a thermosetting plastic produced by combining melamine with formaldehyde.
… Melamine itself is a different matter. In low doses, it is non-toxic; its so-called LD50 (median lethal dose) is on a par with table salt. But should it be combined with a closely related chemical called cyanuric acid, the resulting compound (melamine cyanurate) can cause fatal kidney disease. Melamine cyanurate is widely used as a fire retardant.
Speaking of Beijing… Chinese officials has banned the service of dog during the month of August. It’s not that important anyway, Fuchsia Dunlop says, because few Chinese eat them, and it’s a winter food anyway:
Dog eating, in any case, tends to be a seasonal pursuit. According to Chinese folk dietetics, which classify every food according to its heating and cooling properties, dog is one of the “hottest” meats around, best eaten in midwinter, when you need warmth and vital energy, not in sultry August.