hail China

"President Bush's nomination last week of Henry M. Paulson Jr., Goldman Sachs' chairman and chief executive...Paulson has boasted of visiting China more than 70 times — not a bad resume at a time when China owns more U.S. Treasury bonds than Americans do. With most analysts expecting the dollar to sharply decline soon, it is going to take someone with a knack for stroking our foreign partners to keep the U.S. economy from hitting a wall." from the LA Times

Mark Fischer, vice president of the National Basketball Assn. for China, claims that basketball is China's most popular sport. As evidence, he points to figures released by China's own Sports Ministry: More people play basketball in China than there are people — people, period — in the U.S. The game was introduced to China by American missionaries and even thrived during the Cultural Revolution. The NBA is now seen in China as a hip, personality-filled offshoot of U.S. culture. "The game is a good fit for where Chinese society is headed," Fischer says, "because it's all about expressing individualism within a team setting." also from the LA Times