December 26, 2011

WALTER RUSSELL MEAD: China Rail Fail: 42% Spending Cut in Bullet Train Meltdown. “The Panda Lobby, the pundits and policy wonks who want the US to imitate China’s state capitalism, has long celebrated what it claims to be China’s far sighted and effective approach to industrial policy. China, the Panda pundits tell us, will own the future because of its courageous subsidies to green technology and high speed rail. The meltdown of the Chinese solar industry has been widely reported; now comes word that the rail program is also in trouble. . . . Those of us who remember the short lived but intense Sushi Lobby, the Americans who thought the US needed to imitate the brilliant success of Japanese state capitalism back in those halcyon days of the 1980s when the grounds of the Imperial Palace in Tokyo were estimated to cost more than the entire state of California, will be waiting to hear how the Panda pundits explain the high speed rail meltdown.” Actually, back in the day we called them the Chrysanthemum Club.

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