China

Demographia World Urban Areas, 2020: Tokyo Lead Diminishing

DUA-2020.jpg

For the first time in more than six decades the world’s second ranked built-up urban area has reached within 10% of leader Tokyo. The 2020 edition of Demographia World Urban Areas reports that Jakarta has reached a population of 34.5 million, behind Tokyo-Yokohama’s 38.0 million (Figure 1). The report can be downloaded here (Note 1).  read more »

Viral Politics

whitehouse-press-conference.jpg

Long after the pandemic has receded, its long-term impact on our society and political life will continue. Just as plagues past have reshaped the trajectory of cities and civilizations, sometimes with fearsome morbidity, COVID-19 is already having a profoundly disruptive impact on our political future.  read more »

The Coming Age of Dispersion

Shanghai_China_paveldvorak.jpg

As of this writing, the long-term effects of the coronavirus pandemic remain uncertain. But one possible consequence is an acceleration of the end of the megacity era. In its place, we may now be witnessing the outlines of a new, and necessary, dispersion of population, not only in the wide open spaces of North America and Australia, but even in the megacities of the developing world.  read more »

Standard of Living Crisis Evident in New Demographia International Housing Affordability Survey

dhi16residential.jpg

One of the principal advances of the past two centuries has been the drastic reduction in poverty and the rise of a large middle-class, a process expertly detailed by economists Diedre McClosky and Robert Gordon.  read more »

A Clash of Values

hong-kong-protests-sept2019.jpg

Most American concerns with China revolve around economic issues, and, for some, the threat posed by that country’s expanding military. But China’s real existential challenge is not over market shares or submarines, but in a battle of values. Right now, it does not seem we are certain to win.

China presents the most profound challenge to liberal values since the end of the Cold War, a development that has caught our consistently lame political establishment by surprise. The leaders of both parties, and much of the corporate America, never saw it coming.  read more »

China's Looming Class Struggle

charl-folscher-china-class-struggle.jpg

Westerners tend to identify China’s coming political crisis with developments such as the brave, educated, and often English-speaking protests in Hong Kong. Although they undoubtably pose an annoyance to Xi Jinping’s regime, the real existential challenge to the regime derives not from China’s middle orders but from the very classes that gave birth to the Communist regime.  read more »

Average Chinese Car Travels as Much as American Car

china-road-infrastructure.jpg

China is now the largest automobile market in the world. In 2018, 23.7 million new light vehicles were sold in China, compared to the 17.3 million sold in the United States. During the Great Recession, China displaced the US, which had been the world’s leading car market since the invention of the automobile.  read more »

America Is Number One: Too Bad The Politicians Don’t See It

1200px-Flag_and_Field_House.jpg

The United States is a great country dominated by small minds. The two dominant political forces of our time — the progressive left and the Trumpian right — have a stake in pushing a declinist narrative, one to change the country in a more statist direction, the other to stir up resentment and nostalgia among the middle-class masses.  read more »

China's Urban Crisis

1200px-China_Resources_Headquarters_Nanshan_Shenzhen_China.jpg

China stands as the primary exhibit of twenty-first-century urbanism. At a time when elite cities in the West barely manage to grow in population, Chinese cities have emerged out of virtually nothing, as hundreds of millions of people have moved from farm to city.  read more »

The Shanghai to Changzhou Adjacent Urban Areas (with a Photographic Tour)

Untitled.jpg

After China’s Guangzhou-Hong Kong adjacent urban areas in the Pearl River Delta (see: “Ultimate City: The Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macao Greater Bay Area”), the second most expansive urbanization in the world stretches from Shanghai to Changzhou in China.  read more »