Long and uninterrupted arcs of time being so few, why not describe ways in which readers might garner more than two hours of potential edification?
1. U.S.-China Cooperation vs. Climate Change // As this video from the hearing indicates, the U.S. House of Representatives recently had the USAID budget to China under scrutiny, or, more precisely, an appropriation of $3.95 million in foreign aid to engage China in activities intended to slow climate change. The 2011 USAID budget is, of course, much more massive than all that, and the activity is ably defended by Nisha Deshai Biswal, the agency’s administrator for Asia. Naturally, this “problem” fits in snugly with two emerging 2012 GOP election memes: 1.) the Obama administration is wasting money on environmental programs and 2.) the Departments of Energy and State are handing China moral victories on various fronts.
For a slightly bigger picture, see Hillary Clinton’s discussions of Chinese transparency on climate change goals:
2. U.S. Aid to Nationalist China/Taiwan // This film from the Eisenhower/Dulles years is another catch from the U.S. National Archives, circa 1956.:
3. Bruce Cumings on North Korean Aid to the Chinese Revolution // Cumings is an undisputed master of the terrain; at about 27′ he starts talking about the cross-border military exchanges between China and North Korea that preceded the Korean War.
4. Occupy Seattle //
Hardly as stirring as the video, or my brave 84-year-old neighbor who stood up to a bunch of police, or the actions by gutsy radicals at UC Davis (I recommend the Bicycle Barricades or Occupy California for a crash course), are the following notes from an unfinished essay I began back a few days before the events pictured:
Between the acoustic strains of an old man chipping out a Bob Dylan guitar tune and the digital feed of the “General Assembly” occurring uptown, a woman in a black leather jacket emerges out of the darkness and dons a red cross armband. While bending to tape a long-neglected broken ankle, she speaks in clipped sentences about illegal class sizes in elementary schools where she spends her days. The task accomplished, she stands and disappears among the tents.
The graduate student who reads Chinese talks to the man whose ankle has now disappeared into socks previously offered to an old black gentleman in sunglasses. The man in whose chair I am sitting has pledged to take the weekend off to spend some time with his dog, but he will be back with his generator and tents and electronic know-how on Monday….