Month: September 2008

Last Call for Global Policy Special Edition

The deadline is fast approaching… Topic areas under consideration include, but aren’t limited to: Energy, Environment and Sustainable Development; International Law and Security; Poverty Alleviation and Human Development; or any other topic in the international context. SUBMISSIONS ARE DUE BY September 19, 2008 Submissions should be between 2,500 and 5,000 words and contain a cover page with your name, e-mail address, and phone number. For more information, visit our Submission Guidelines...

Read More

American-Style Science and Technology

The U.S. has a lot of failed policies concerning areas such as economics and foreign affairs, but it seems one place they seem to be able to get it right is with science and technology policy. The most apparent reason for this is that the government has a good policy when it comes to making science and technology policy: Don't make policies. Most of the current policy regarding science and technology is old. There is a patent system, and the government marks money for research efforts, which is the main vehicle of policymaking. There are occasions when the government decides that a policy decision is necessary on this front. Unfortunately, science and technology policymaking it is too often initiated for the wrong reasons, created ignorantly or without enough discussion, and executed poorly. Two recent examples of this effect are the whole body of legislation dealing with media rights, like the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA), and our current energy policies. In the case of the DMCA-like legislation, a powerful and wealthy industry whined and complained until the government responded by backing them up and trying to protect their interests. Unfortunately, this was the wrong way to handle the situation. The problem stems from media corporations’ defiance in the face of a changing market. In a knee-jerk reaction to a threat to their current business model, they tried to halt...

Read More

Dialectica Radio: Show One – Education In China

Tonight, students from the LBJ School of Public Affairs present the inaugural show of Dialectica, a community program to provide KVRX listeners with in-depth information about policy issues through a compelling, issue-driven narrative. This evening’s program focuses on education in China. We share an exploration of the Chinese educational system, review its historical framework, and compare and contrast the Chinese and United States educational systems. [soundcloud url=”″ params=”” width=” 100%” height=”166″ iframe=”true”...

Read More

Bush is No Batman, Unless Batman is Two-Face

The twin towers not rebuilt, bin Laden not brought to justice, Al-Qaeda not destroyed: just a few key failures, among so many, of George W. Bush's presidency. When confronted with such a reality, members of the Bush Administration prefer to stick to a three-word response; "history will judge" has become their ultimate brush off of criticism. Instead of admitting to their mistakes, the members of the Bush Administration tell us that in hindsight Bush will be recognized as one of the most underestimated presidents in U.S. history. Adrew Klavan, a popular novelist, went as far as to compare Bush to Batman, who has preserved the freedom of an ungrateful people and has never taken credit for it. "Like W, Batman is vilified and despised for confronting terrorists in the only terms they understand," wrote Klavan in a Wall Street Journal op-ed. "Like W, Batman sometimes has to push the boundaries of civil rights to deal with an emergency, certain that he will re-establish those boundaries when the emergency is past." "When heroes arise who take those difficult duties on themselves," Klavan continued, "it is tempting for the rest of us to turn our backs on them, to vilify them in order to protect our own appearance of righteousness." President Bush, unlike his critics, according to Klavan, has shown his "fortitude and moral courage in this time of terror and...

Read More

On the Anti-Monopoly Law in China

The Anti-Monopoly Law in China took effect on August 1, 2008. After more than a decade of legislation process, it finally won– in a principle sense; none of the 40 complementary measures were carried out except one. It is still an empty law. People doubt what its actual effect will be. The legislation process of Anti-Monopoly Law has been indeed a long journey. The law, which aims to prevent dominance of any one company, was first proposed in 1994. But its pace was slow until 6 years later because of pressure from big state-owned companies and multinationals that had just started doing business in China. It wasn't until 2001, when China joined the World Trade Organization, did the process accelerate. In August 2007, the law was finally passed by the National People's Congress. Although the measure compromised with state-owned enterprises, which dominate industry, people tend to believe it will make way for free market competition against monopolies. It's gained a lot of praise and set a milestone in China's legal history. Debate about the Anti-Monopoly Law never ceased. The previously missing implementation guidelines have recently begun to be unveiled. On August 5, the first guideline about business combinations was finally fleshed out. National private enterprises are eager to fight for competitiveness in the Chinese market, which has long been dominated by state-own and multinational companies. Consumers are looking for...

Read More

Quick Jump