China

Since 2016, Chinese foreign direct investment (FDI) in the U.S. has plunged by 90 percent. That includes things like tech, agriculture and real estate-all drivers in the region's economy. But that dip isn't being felt in our region, yet.

Courtesy U.S. Air Force Space Command / Department of Defense

Update at 12:12 p.m. on 6/28/2019:

Gen. John "Jay" Raymond was confirmed by the full Senate to lead U.S. Space command in a vote on June 27, 2019. In a statement to KUNC, the general said he was "humbled and honored" to be confirmed and called space "absolutely critical" to "our daily lives."

The original story continues below.

In Rural Trump Country, Trade Policy Divides

Mar 21, 2017
Grant Gerlock / Harvest Public Media

Rural voters overwhelmingly chose President Donald Trump in the presidential election. But when it comes to the central campaign promise to get tough on trade, rural voters are not necessarily in sync with the administration.

Dawson County, Nebraska, could easily be called Trump country. As in most of rural America, Donald Trump won a big majority there – 70 percent of the vote. But it’s also a good place to look at one issue where rural residents have different perspectives: trade.

Luke Runyon / KUNC/Harvest Public Media

The massive industry that supplies farmers with the tools to raise crops is on the brink of a watershed moment. High-profile deals that would see some of the largest global agri-chemical companies combine are in the works and could have ripple effects from farm fields to dinner tables across the globe.

Six companies currently dominate the marketplace for agricultural seeds and farm chemicals, like fertilizer and pesticides: BASF, Bayer, DuPont, Dow, Monsanto and Syngenta. Of those, only BASF is not currently in discussions to merge.

Kristofor Husted / Harvest Public Media

Turn on the TV and you can barely escape it: presidential candidates on both sides of the aisle deriding free trade agreements, like the pending Trans-Pacific Partnership. The TPP is a bum deal that will hurt the U.S. economy and especially low-wage workers, according to pols from Donald Trump to Hillary Clinton.

But if you venture into the Midwest and ask a farmer about the TPP, you’re likely to get a different answer.

Seeking Coal's Second Act, Wyoming Looks To China As An Ally

Oct 22, 2015
Leigh Paterson / Inside Energy

Wyoming is fighting hard to keep its coal on the market in the future, no matter the form. Why? Because, according to Wyoming's Economic Analysis Division, revenue from coal accounts for a whopping 25 percent of the state's budget. That dependence is underscored by announced cuts to the budget, courtesy of lower-than-expected energy revenues.

As global pressure to address climate change mounts and market forces continue to work against the black rock, researchers and policymakers in the state and in coal producing regions all over the world are scrambling to figure out what to do with coal other than burning it.

Amy Mayer / Harvest Public Media

It’s planting time for Midwest farmers and much of the corn they grow will end up feeding livestock in China, which has become a huge importer of grain from the Corn Belt. That means the farmers can’t just select seeds based on which ones will get the best yield. They have to think about where their grain will be sold.

China has its own rules for the kind of crops it wants and when American farmers don’t comply, China can close off its market.

Some of the world's top race-car drivers put the pedal to the metal in Formula E this weekend, the first-ever all-electric automobile race. It was held in the Chinese capital, the first of 10 cities that will host the races between now and next June.

The championship is aimed to generate interest in — and boost sales of — electric cars.

In boxing, it's not often that the first fight of the night gets a lot of attention. But at Longshoreman's Hall in San Francisco last month, the fans, the announcers, even the viewers watching the broadcast on FOX Sports One were all captivated by the boxer in the blue corner.

"Tonight he makes his professional debut and joins us from Beijing, China," chimed the announcer. "Here is The Great Wall: Taishan!"

Hour after hour passed as Chen Guang stood, gun trembling in his hands, behind the doors of Beijing's Great Hall of the people, waiting for the order to clear Tiananmen Square of its student protesters.

It was 1989, and Chen was a 17-year-old soldier from a small town whose life was changed by his role in the bloody crackdown. His account offers a sharply different perspective of the events of June 3 and 4, 1989, when martial law troops fought their way into the center of Beijing, killing hundreds of people, mainly on approach roads into the square.

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