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In Line Behind a Billion People: How Scarcity will Define China’s Ascent in the Next Decade by Damien Ma, William Adams

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5. Education: Give me equality...but not until after my son gets into Tsinghua

A thought experiment: Turkmenbashi for a day

Imagine for a moment that you woke up this morning to discover that you are now the autocratic ruler of a large developing country. Congratulations! Like us, you will probably spend your time in the shower daydreaming about what kind of stone to use in the massive statues and busts of yourself that are to be installed in city centers, town squares, and other points of public interest. Marble? Classic but a little cliché. Alabaster? Beautiful but impractical; you’re an autocrat, but not an insane one (or at least not yet). Decisions!

By breakfast, though, weightier matters will start to occupy your mind, foremost among ...

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