Costa Rica is the hot spot these days for the medical machining business. With the free trade agreement with Central America, medical companies are ignoring Puerto Rico, which has become increasingly uncomfortable with crime, and heading to the beautiful little country with two ocean coasts. San Jose is an easy plane ride from Miami or Dallas and the political climate is benign. On medical or dental products the airfreight is tiny versus the value added.
I’m such a sucker for underdog sports stories; I think I have a Rudy complex. But Jeremy Lin – you gotta love it.
Because I spend a lot of time in Palo Alto, California, the Lin story has special meaning. The kid went to Palo Alto High School, across from the Peet’s Coffee I often frequent when I’m visiting my daughter. I used to read about him in the local paper. I’ve become a Stanford fan over the years and the real Linsanity is that Stanford did not offer Lin a scholarship. They had a nice player in Landry Fields, who in a quirk of fate is starting for the New York Knicks alongside Lin. If Lin had gone to Stanford (he could have walked to school) there is a good chance the Cardinal would have been a Final Four team. They certainly would have been better than Butler on paper. But Stanford thought Lin wasn’t good enough for the Pac 10, so he took his only other offer – Harvard – and made All-Ivy League twice.
I think big time sports are a lot like online dating. People look for a profile, a set of qualifications, a scouting report like the old scouts in Moneyball. So a Steve Nash gets overlooked coming out of high school in Vancouver and goes to Santa Clara, because who wants a Canadian soccer player to play point guard? For the pro scouts, a Chinese kid who went to Harvard was so contrary to the profile of a typical NBA guard that they just couldn’t fathom the fact that Lin had game.
Will they ever learn?
The Michigan Republican Primary has put the spotlight on the GM–Chrysler bailout. The Republican candidates have been amazingly tone deaf in denouncing the emergency measure to conform to Tea Party orthodoxy. C’mon guys. As unpalatable as it was to inject taxpayer money, the sad fact is that the infrastructure of suppliers that so many of us are part of could have crumbled if the bailout had not occurred. Banks were so shaky and paranoid at the time that few would have stepped up, and everybody including Ford would have been in jeopardy.
The rapid rebound of the Big Three should be applauded. The success of the Chevy Cruze and the Jeep Grand Cherokee is a wonderful thing, and the leadership of these companies has done a terrific job. And from what I hear from suppliers the relationship with the Big Three is more businesslike than it has been since the awful Ignacio Lopez era began.
The new Charles Murray book The Great Divide is one of the most important works on American life in years. Jerry Levine will be reviewing the book for TMW shortly. It discusses how America has changed over the last 50 years with the rich getting richer and the poor and middle class losing ground. This is not an Occupy rant, but a clear-eyed look at how changing social more`s and educational choices have produced a chasm in the country. It should be the topic of debates in the coming election. Unfortunately, so far the Republicans are looking backward at auto bailouts, and Obama is sending outrageous budgets to Congress that he knows are dead on arrival. Let us hope we see and hear a realistic argument about issues in the real Presidential campaign.
Question: Three years after the auto bailout, do you think it was the right decision?