Suggested Discussion Outline

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johnkarls
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Joined: Fri Jun 29, 2007 8:43 pm

Suggested Discussion Outline

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From: ReadingLiberally-SaltLake@johnkarls.com
To: Each of Our 162 Members One-By-One
Subject: Meeting THIS WED Evening Oct 16 – Suggested Discussion Outline – “Tech Titans Of China: How China’s Tech Sector Is Challenging The World By Innovating Faster, Working Harder and Going Global"
Date: Sat, October 12, 2019 2:38 am MDT - 4:18 am MDT
Attachments:
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To Each of Our 162 Members One-By-One – for reasons explained in the 4 postings in Sec. 2 of www.ReadingLiberally-SaltLake.org


Dear Friends,

Meeting THIS WED evening Oct 16 – 7:00 pm - 9:00 pm.

For venue, please RSVP to ReadingLiberally-SaltLake@johnkarls.com.

[The RSVP’s have UNANIMOUSLY decided for their convenience to change the venue from the Salt Lake City Library IAW long-standing policy stated in recent weekly e-mails and on the face of Sec. 2 of www.ReadingLiberally-SaltLake.org.]

Salt Lake nonresidents are invited to participate by Skype

*****
The Focus Book

“Tech Titans Of China: How China’s Tech Sector Is Challenging The World By Innovating Faster, Working Harder and Going Global" by Rebecca A. Fannin (Nicholas Brealey Publishing – 9/3/2019 – 225 pages sans notes & index).

Amazon.com - $23.16 + shipping or $13.99 Kindle.

[NB: First-time attendees who just want to give us a try are not expected to have read the focus book]

*****
Description of Focus Book & Author Bio

Available at http://discussingliberally-saltlake.org ... 556&t=1824.

*****
Suggested Discussion Outline

It is respectfully suggested that we spend the first hour discussing the focus book –

1. Chapters 1-4 on how China has overtaken Silicon Valley in traditional “bread and butter” areas.
2. Chapter 5 on how China’s venture capitalists have overtaken Silicon Valley’s.
3. Chapters 6-10 on how China is outpacing Silicon Valley in future technology such as artificial intelligence, drones and robots.

It is respectfully suggested that we then spend the last hour discussing issues that were raised in the Short Quiz that were outside the scope of “Tech Titans of China” in order to provide context –

4. Is it necessarily a bad thing for China’s Tech Industry to leave America’s Silicon Valley “in the dust”?

5. In other words, isn’t it a good thing that scientific and technological advances are being made to benefit humankind? Even if some, or many, of them are invented by the Chinese to whom royalties, etc., must then be paid?

6. In other words, aren’t “1 billion minds better than one” as the old saying can be paraphrased?

7. Especially when it comes to inventing something?

8. In this regard, did the Head of the U.S. Patent Office send his resignation in 1899 to President McKinley urging the closing of the office because “everything that could be invented has been invented”?

9. So isn’t the only real issue in all the talk about China vs. America whether China might develop superior weapons to U.S. weapons? An issue outside the scope of “Tech Titans of China”?

10. What was William Manchester’s thesis in “The Arms of Krupp” (Little Brown & Co. 1964)?

11. Isn’t the fear that China might develop superior weapons legitimate if William Manchester is correct that virtually all wars have been decided by which side had superior weapons?

12. And isn’t it conceivable that new weapons could be invented that would make obsolete all of the weapons that have been invented so far? After all, if you don’t think so, aren’t you thinking like the 1899 Head of the U.S. Patent Office?

13. What do you think the world would be like today if Hitler had obtained nuclear weapons before the U.S.? Or if Stalin had done so?

14. And yes, do critics argue that the U.S. has been the only country to use nuclear weapons?

15. But couldn’t America have quickly enslaved the entire world with nuclear weapons in 1945 if it had been as ruthless as Hitler or Stalin MIGHT HAVE BEEN???

16. In other words, not shrinking from causing 60 million deaths (Hitler during WW-II) or 12 million deaths (Stalin during solely his farm-collectivization program in the 1930’s) – or how-many-ever deaths it takes???

17. Do you think America’s government can be trusted today???

18. Do you think China’s government can be trusted today???

19. In thinking about Questions 16 & 17, is democracy relevant???

20. If you think so, doesn’t democracy depend on a free, honest and intelligent news media???

21. Was Hitler democratically elected in 1933???

22. By the time Hitler began annexing/invading other countries (Austria – March 1938, Czechoslovakia – October 1938, Poland – September 1939), did his “Minister of Propaganda” (the official title of Joseph Goebbels!!!) have such a tight grip on German media that virtually every word reaching the German public had to be approved by him???

23. Indeed, when Britain and France declared war on Germany following the invasion of Poland, did Hitler not even bother to send American war correspondents home because he knew that Goebbels had such a tight grip on German media that Hitler knew nothing the American war correspondents would report could ever get back to the German public???

24. Was William Shirer (author, inter alia, of “Rise and Fall of the Third Reich”) one of the American war correspondents who “had the run” of Nazi-occupied Europe during the 2-plus years after Britain/France declared war until Pearl Harbor???

25. Did William Shirer keep a diary of those experiences which he published, with a bit of editing, as a famous book entitled “Berlin Diary”???

26. BTW, did William Shirer’s “Berlin Diary” document that the British news media accounts about “brave R.A.F. pilots fighting the Luftwaffe” during the “Battle of Britain” was nothing more than a propaganda hoax???

27. But back to Hitler and Goebbels, do you think it would have made any difference to how World War II unfolded if Germany still had democratic elections during the annexations/invasions of Austria, Czechoslovakia and Poland since Goebbels had such tight control of German media???

28. Doesn’t this prove that (assuming you think democracy is relevant to Questions 13-19 of whether the American or Chinese governments can be trusted with “the ultimate to-be-invented weapon”) a free, honest and intelligent news media is essential to democracy???

29. Isn’t it true that every time we have discussed the mainstream American news media, we have always concluded that it is NEITHER honest NOR intelligent – discussing the issue of “the mindless howling mob” each time in terms of a sports example so that nobody would feel her/his “ox was being gored” though inviting our members to propose alleged examples of honesty and/or intelligence in public-policy contexts???

30. Even if you think America has a free, honest and intelligent news media – usually posited by political science professors as a NECESSARY but not SUFFICIENT prerequisite for democracy – do you think the U.S. has a democracy in the wake of our 4 meetings on “Authoritarian Rule By Our Intelligence Services” on 5/10/2017, 12/13/2017, 5/16/2018 and 10/31/2018?

31. After all, didn’t the U.S. Government DEFY the most-important recommendation of Graham Allison, the Founding Dean of Harvard’s Kennedy School of Government???

32. And wasn’t that recommendation championed by former U.S. Senator Sam Nunn (D-GA and Senate Armed Services Committee Chairman 1987-1995), U.S. Senator Richard Lugar (R-IN and Senate Foreign Relations Committee Chairman 2003-2007) and Messrs. Thomas Kean and Lee Hamilton (Chair and Co-Chair of The 9/11 Commission)???

33. And weren’t those efforts publicized by Tim Russert with numerous appearances of Nunn/Lugar/Kean/Hamilton on Meet The Press???

34. And didn’t Tom Brokaw help to publicize those efforts with his participation as himself in a Docu-Drama produced by Nunn/Lugar/Kean/Hamilton???

35. Was this MOST-IMPORTANT RECOMMENDATION that the U.S. Government DEFIED -- that the only way to keep nuclear weapons out of the hands of terrorists while preserving democracy would be to control fissile material the way we used to control gold at Fort Knox???

36. And instead, didn’t the US Government (WITH THE COMPLICITY OF THE MAINSTREAM MEDIA) decide to deal with Osama’s fatwā to nuke 10 million Americans by VASTLY INCREASING THE POWERS UNDER THE FOREIGN INTELLIGENCE SURVEILLANCE ACT (“FISA”) to spy on everyone, INCLUDING AMERICANS WITHOUT any warrant from a FISA Court provided the Attorney General or the Director of National Intelligence declared an “emergency” pursuant to FISA Sec. 702(c)???

37. So why is anyone surprised that THE INTELLIGENCE SERVICES WOULD SOON BE WEAPONIZED for use against political opponents???

38. Or that the intelligence services WOULD THEMSELVES soon by running our government with politicians nothing more than pawns in their Kabuki Theatre???

*****
We look forward to seeing all of you THIS WED evening Oct 16.

Your friend,
John K.

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