Wednesday, February 21, 2018

How soon before we call it ‘the jobs to China moment’?

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On this day in 1972, President Richard M. Nixon made history, and showed some political flexibility, by landing Air Force One in China.  It was the story of the year and one of the most interesting foreign policy decisions of the postwar period, especially because of Nixon’s political past.
Nixon seemed an unlikely candidate to thaw those chilly relations.
During the 1940s and 1950s, he had been a vocal cold warrior and had condemned the Democratic administration of Harry S. Truman for “losing” China to the communists in 1949. 
President Nixon’s move paved the way for the China of today – in other words, cars instead of bicycles.  Skyscrapers instead of simple buildings.  It also contributed to the outsourcing of thousands of manufacturing jobs – i.e., “Made in China” is everywhere!   
The jury is still out on just how much the U.S. got out of this arrangement.  At the same, most Americans are not old enough to remember Mao or the China that some of us remember as kids.  Back then, it seemed that all Chinese men and women wore the same outfits.  Today, they are as fashionable as anyone in the West.
Nevertheless, as Seth Mandel wrote a couple of years ago, President Nixon left us with a great expression: “any major politician’s rebuke to his ideological compatriots, no matter how superficial, is a ‘Nixon-to-China moment.'”
Some of us are old enough to remember watching the scenes on the evening news.  It’s amazing how China has changed.
Was it the right thing to do?  We are still debating that today.  I just don’t remember anyone back then saying opening up China would turn China into a manufacturing powerhouse with a huge, and expanding, navy.
PS: You can listen to my show (Canto Talk) and follow me on Twitter.

My friends tell me that no one listens to former President Fox in Mexico

October 2006: Baseball and steroids

Back in 2006, baseball had a real image problem.    It was inevitable that someone would come up with a pretty good cartoon.

Tuesday, February 20, 2018

Tuesday's show: Nixon in China 1972, Gun control debate and other stories

We will look at Nixon in China 1972 and the consequences........did anyone predict that China would become a manufacturing power house with an expanding military and navy?.......the gun control debate has to focus on background checks and school security.........the Obama administration and Russia...............and other stories.....

Click to listen:

Tuesday's video: Nixon to China 1972

We remember President Nixon’s trip to China......and how things have changed....

Click to watch:

Not watching the Winter Olympics either

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We keep hearing about NBC’s ratings problems, as we see in this report:     
At the halfway point of the XXIII Winter Olympics, things are certainly feeling a little chilly for both Team USA and NBC.     
As last night’s primetime coverage displayed, even with the surprise silver in the short-track speedskating that John-Henry Krueger scored, both the medal count for America’s athletes and the ratings for the broadcaster are struggling to gain traction in the PyeongChang games.
Currently, Team USA is in sixth place with 10 overall medals, just behind the Russian competitors, and tied for third in gold medals with Canada’s haul of five. As for the Comcast-owned broadcaster, the 2018 Olympics needs a miracle on ice or two to escape being the lowest rated and least watched games ever. 
Wow, who saw that coming? 
On Sunday, we usually get together for lunch with a bunch of other couples. Naturally, we spoke about the Olympics and the games on TV.
I am not suggesting that this is a scientific survey but this is what I heard:
1) Why are U.S. athletes telling us about their politics? We don’t want to hear it. Shut up and do whatever you went to the Olympics to do. I see a huge backlash against Hollywood and professional athletes over the focus on politics.
2) No U.S. hockey team worth watching. Frankly, this is my reason for not watching. In prior games, the hockey was top notch. The U.S.-Canada game was superb the last few times. We miss NHL players although I understand why the owners did not want to interrupt the season.
3) Too much stuff that has nothing to do with sports. Too many background stories and the treatment of Kim’s little sister was just way over the top; and last but not least,
4) My 20-something sons told me last night that their generation is watching the games in other networks. I guess he means that you can watch the event live on their I-phones.
So best wishes to all but I am not watching. In the future, you may see the Olympics live and then a prime time summary of the day’s events. Or they may be broadcast by total sports channel, such as ESPN or Fox Sports. Sorry, but there is not enough material to justify all of that prime time TV time.
P.S. You can listen to my show (Canto Talk) and follow me on Twitter.

Happy # 70 Jennifer O'Neill

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We say happy birthday to Jennifer O'Neill who was born in Rio de Janeiro on this day in 1948.   We remember her face all over US TV commercials and in the movie "Summer of 42":

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