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Army of Davids; Army of Blue Ants

March 28, 2006 | By | No Comments

china internet cafe chongqing yoest 06

Internet Cafe in Chongqing, ChinaYour Business Blogger just bought The Big Blogger, Glenn Reynolds’ new book An Army of Davids: How Markets and Technology Empower Ordinary People to Beat Big Media, Big Government, and Other Goliaths.

The Instapundit thesis is not, I think, limited to the US of A.

Technology; people; institutions face the same challenges the world over. Your Business Blogger has become, gasp! a globalist.

army of davids book

An Army of Davids

When working in China I was reminded of another army — an army of blue ants. Twenty years ago, foreign visitors noted, not unkindly, the ubiquitous blue Mao suits. A hard-working populous; one mind; one suit.

Fashion has changed in China.

Colors, style, trend. Pushed by teenagers and embraced by all.

And the teens are pushing, as they do the world over, in other directions.

Your Business Blogger visited an internet cafe on my last China trip. Etiquette hint: Don’t ask for the non-smoking terminals. A non-smoking section? Heh, as Reynolds would write. The whole country is, well, Marlboro country.

Directions to the cafe were complicated. It was hidden in a dimly lit smokey warehouse accessible thru a back alley — safety was never a concern — workstations as far as the eye could see. 100’s of them. An hour on a keyboard sets a hacker back one yuan. 12.5 cents.

The arena was filled with 20-somethings all gone gaming. Smoking and practicing English.

The kids looked like they were there for days. I was there a few hours myself.

And not a Mao suit in sight.

What’s the matter with kids these days? Beijing is wondering.

The Wall Street Journal recently reported that China is attempting to limit the Web’s influence on young people.

Goodness. Attempting to limit access to the web! Big Brother stopping freedom! Big Government controlling all behavior!


Except Beijing wants to limit kids under 18 to five hours — five hours of on-line gaming each day.

Maybe that’s not such a bad law after all.

Now if China could keep the kids from smoking…

Like our Government does.


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Thank you (foot)notes:

More on Mao suits at the jump.

Dana Blankenhorn has his limits. An excellent review.

Tim Wu, from the Columbia Law School has a white paper at The World Trade Law of Internet Filtering.

For the best in business in China, visit David Daniels at Global Market Development and Internet Adoption in China.

Median Sib has excellent review of Davids.

Don Surber has best of Thursday Posts. Bookmark him.

Mudville Gazette has Open Post.

See Feld’s Thoughts on A Different View on China.

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What Is The Power of American Television?

March 15, 2006 | By | No Comments

Yesterday, Your Business Blogger was on a major university campus in East Asia watching students play basketball outdoors. Acres of concrete courts. A football-sized outside arena with dozens and dozens of hoops.

The play is not quite like the intramural competition in USA. On this side of the world the students don’t play defense. Just shooting.

So I ask my host about this — offense only, no defense.

I’m expecting a deep relevelation of cultural differences. A difference in innovation or strategies or team play or ego or losing face. Maybe something about DNA differences?


The answer?

American TV.

These students watch ESPN. They learned to play basketball watching America’s NBA.

Where you will never see any defensive play.

The basketball style of play will probably change when college ball is broadcast into East Asia.

So. The world is watching the USA. And picking up some bad habits, in addition to watching Spong Bob Square Pants.


Media Alert: Jack On Small Business Trends Radio

March 7, 2006 | By | No Comments


Small Business Trends

Forbes Winner Your Business Blogger will be discussing Top 10 Mistakes Small Business Owners Make with Their Employees.

Hit time is Tuesday, March 7th at 1pm EST.


Anita Campbell


Visit Small Business Trends and click through the microphone at top right.






The award winning Small Business Trends is hosted by Anita Campbell. Her collaborator is Steve Rucinski at Small Business CEO.


Small Business CEO, published since May 2004


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Thank you (foot)notes:

Small Business Trends is sponsored by Six Disciplines on Safe for workplace listening.

Reagan in Baltimore: Red President in a Blue State

February 13, 2006 | By | One Comment


Reagan and ReaganitesCharmaine and Your Business Blogger celebrated belatedly The Gipper’s Birthday at the Ropewalk in Downtown Balitmore.

Good food. Good company. Good politics.

A perfect evening.



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Thank you (foot)notes:

Ropewalk Tavern is located at 1209 S. Charles Street; Baltimore, Maryland, 410.727.1298, in the historic Federal Hill ‘hood. Owner Marc McFaul is doing everthing right. This is an unpaid endorsement.

Taping for the Fred Friendly Seminars

February 13, 2006 | By | One Comment


Public Broadcasting SystemLast week Charmaine did the Fred Friendly Seminars. A civilized shouting show on PBS.

The program was on Ethics in America: My Brother’s Keeper. The moderator was Charles Ogletree, Harvard Law School.


L to R: Rabbi Daniel Zemel, Elayne Bennett, Barney Frank, Charmaine Yoest,

Anita Allen


Charmaine in make-up


The Dude and The Diva get the camera angles


Cook’s Tour by

Producer Pamela Mason Wagner


Executive Producer Richard Kilberg with Charmaine


Note Ethics’ compass. Magnetic north?

Or left tilt?


Filmed on the sets of Atlantic Video

in Washington, DC

Professor Ogletree assured us during taping that the repeated use of the words “penis” and “sexually transmitted diseases” would probably end up on the cutting floor. The liberal panelists seemed to like very direct language.

Certainly Barney Frank did. Only the congressman from Massachusettes could use the words “fetish” and “fetish-ize” multiple times. Into a live mike. For cable.

We’ll let you know when it airs.


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Thank you (foot)notes:

The PBS operating revenue in fiscal year 2004 was $333 million. Leading sources of revenue included: …CPB and federal grants (24%); …and educational product sales (12%).

And the generous support of Annenberg Media.

The Seminar tapes are available from Fred Friendly Seminars for a fee. As part of their consulting offering and education packages. The guests appearing on the show are not compensated. Save for the croissants and coffee. Now that’s a business model.

See more on The Seminars at the jump.

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09 Feb



Vanity Fair Competes with Playboy

February 9, 2006 | By | 2 Comments

Cross Post from Reasoned Audacity

Tom Ford and Keira Knightly

on the cover of Vanity Fair

I’ll admit that Vanity Fair is not exactly a high defender of morality in our culture, even on a good day. The ads they accept in their pages have been problematic for quite some time. But for the most part, their cover art, even though edgy, has stayed on the right side of discretion.

But this month, they leapt over the line, with a cover photograph of Tom Ford — fully clothed — biting Keira Knightly’s ear. Knightly is completely naked. Reclining in front of them is Scarlett Johanssen, also completely nude.

CNBC Video Clip Here

So much for progress toward female empowerment. That’s the argument I made on CNBC Wednesday night when they asked me to discuss the cover with an editor from Forbes and Todd Myers, Lead Consultant for Faith Popcorn’s BrainReserve.

I’ve included the clip up above if you’d like to see it. But WARNING! Almost the entire segment is the three of us talking over b-roll of the Vanity Fair cover. They just replay lingering shots of the nudity over and over and over again.

There are two issues that particularly trouble me about the cover. The first is the juxtaposition of Ford, the man, being fully clothed . . . while the women are nude. Feminists ought to be outraged. I am. What’s the message being sent there? There are several — pick one. None of them are ones you want sent to your daughter.

And that brings me to my second concern. What does this cover say to young women about success in Hollywood? Anywhere? Both Knightley and Johanssen are well-respected young actresses. Keira Knightly, in particular, is one that my own girls have admired.

I wish these two had had the moral courage to take a stand for virtue.

Or, if that couldn’t clear that high bar, at least make a stand for talent over crass commodification.

Rachel McAdams

Let me be sure, then, to send praises along to one who did: Rachel McAdams, another young Hollywood actress (“Wedding Crashers”). Defamer reports that she was supposed to be on the cover with Keira and Scarlett, but when she found out the plan for the shoot involved nudity, she left. . . and fired her publicist. Good going, Rachel.


Carnival of Entrepreneurship – Grand Opening

February 9, 2006 | By | No Comments


Powerline’s Scott Johnson, Charmaine Yoest, Ph.D. and Paul Mirengoff

at the American Poitical Science Association, fall 2005

credit: Jack Yoest

A weblog reader wrote to Powerline: “Thanks for Changing the World!” When they wrote about errors on the CBS icon 60 Minutes. And bringing to the public news and expertise that had not been seen anywhere else.

Scott Allen is continuing this trend.

Whenever Your Business Blogger talks with journalists from the Main Stream Media, they always complain that there is no editorial oversight in the blogosphere.

The journalists are wrong. As usual.

Note the emergence and growth of Carnivals. They review and select the best offerings. Weblog readers and writers are segmenting down to narrower and narrower niches with greater and greater expertise.

Until they become like the old joke about Ph.D. dissertations: Knowing more and more about less and less.

And this is good. Blog readers and commenters provide some of the sharpest insight and critique around in any medium. Editorial oversight, as it were.

Here is the case study: Scott Allen has started up a start-up for start ups for weblog readers and writers. Free consulting. Every Week.

At The Carnival of Entrepreneurship. Up and running at Scott’s.


Michael Barone, Scott Johnson, Paul Mirengoff

credit: Jack Yoest


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Thank you (foot)notes:

See more on the expertise of Scott Allen in the extended entry.

See Don Surber’s Thursday Best Blogs.

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Vanity Fair CNBC Clip. Caution: Not Wise To View At Work Or With Children

February 8, 2006 | By | One Comment


Vanity FairCharmaine appeared on CNBC (attempting) to debate the cover of Vanity Fair. Is it art? Or money-making-porn?


CNBCCNBC’s On The Money

Click here for the CNBC Vanity Fair video.

This is a long 6 minute segment.


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Thank you (foot)notes:

Charmaine Yoest, Ph.D. blogs at Reasoned Audacity and FRCBlog

Be sure to visit Basil’s Blog.

Don Surber has best Wednesday posts.

Mudville has Open Post.

OutsideTheBeltway as links.

Aquila has more (or less).

See The Washington Post.

07 Feb



Media Alert: Vanity Fair Uncovered Cover on CNBC

February 7, 2006 | By | 2 Comments


Vanity FairCharmaine will be on CNBC tonight, Tuesday at 7:30 to debate the cover of Vanity Fair. Is it art? Or money-making-porn?


CNBCCNBC’s On The Money debate begins at 7:00pm. Charmaine will be appearing with Todd Myers, Lead Consultant for Faith Popcorn’s BrainReserve and a woman from Forbes.

Be sure to tune in and let us know what you think!


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Thank you (foot)notes:

More on Todd Myers on extended entry.

Charmaine Yoest, Ph.D. blogs at Reasoned Audacity and FRCBlog

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Rolling Stones Super Bowl XL: The Beatles Were Right

February 6, 2006 | By | One Comment


The Beatles Shea Stadium 1965The Beatles in their closing years decided to stop performing outdoor concerts. Even though the gig in Shea Stadium was a success.

The Fab Four said the music didn’t sound the same.


The Rolling StonesAlthough the roof covered the Stones’ performance in the stadium last night in Detroit, the singing didn’t sound the same.

Your Business Blogger saw the Rolling Stones North American Tour, in Norfolk, Virginia on July 5, 1972.

The Stones didn’t sound the same. Now compared to then.

And it doesn’t really matter.


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Thank you (foot)notes:

My dad got me Stones tickets. Courtesy: United States Navy, I think. (How did he do that?) (I don’t think I ever thanked him.) Too late now. That matters.