Best Texas Songs: The Short List If you're new to Texas, you better know Texas music. If you grew up in Texas and you don't know at least these or Pat Green, Dixie Chicks or T Bone Burnett, may a horned toad snuggle in your boots and a Texas tarantula crawl across you when you sleep. Full Story » Alan Nelson
Out of 26 million Texans, you may have an idea to change the world. You may have had several ideas to change the world. But only a tiny minority of you pushed through the U.S. Patent office from application to successful patent. We've seen Texans change the world many times over. Jack Kilby did it with Texas Instruments in 1958 with the integrated circuit, causing the start of the digital revolution, which, in part, is why you can read these words over your electronic device.
Over the last few years, Texas Business has brought its feature: Texas Business Patent of the Day. This list is of the ones that were either extremely clever, odd or strange. One thing becomes apparent from these patents and the patent that runs daily in Texas Business—Texans have a unique mind set.
Though the history of the Corn Dog is disputed, the State Fair of Texas claims to have introduced the Corny Dog sometime between 1938 and 1942. As a paean to that invention that now sits in the freezer section of every grocery store in the southwest, here are the fried foods the State Fair of Texas has introduced, or tried to introduce, in the last seven years.
Don't get caught up with John Wayne religion. For one thing, he's not Texan. He's in some fine movies involving Texas, most notably The Searchers, but none of his movies can make the best cut of Texas movies. Here's the short list.
Unsung Texas Business Journalists Mention that one is a reporter, and there's a spark of interest. Mention that one is a business news reporter, and watch the eyes glaze over. Except to the players, business and economic journalists are unappreciated. While many wish to become sports reporters when they grow up, most do not realize that business journalists cover the Real Game. Mention that reporter covers business, and watch the eyes glaze over. A toast to these below on the short list and the numerous unnamed ones slogging away. Full Story » TexasBusiness.com
Best Texas Mexican Food: The Short List No, we're not going to debate the difference between Tex-Mex, Mex-Tex, Mexican and Texican food. Just know these establishments are the pinnacle of Texas Mexican fare. No brag, just fact. Full Story » TexasBusiness.com
Best Texas Burgers Texas Burgers. . While a hamburger is merely sustenance and gratification for a meal, the memory a good Texas burger can give rise to Homeric odes. The short list. Full Story » TexasBusiness.com
There are three Texas communities with China in their name: China Spring, China Grove and China, Texas. In the era when China was a mystery, these were among the main Texas references to that ancient land.
However, these communities trace their names from the ornamental China Berry tree, not the country of China.
As a kid I heard countless times the fortunes that could be made in China if the wall opened. The story always revolved around the numbers of people and the scale of economy that would provide. It went along the lines that if you could sell something for $1 profit to everyone in China, you would be wealthy beyond Midas.
Then Nixon went to China and started the process where we’re doing business with the giant despite Tiananmen Square, despite censorship of Google, despite the Hong Kong problem, despite many other identity problems that a former communist county experiences as economic forces transform it into a market economy.
Now that the door is open to the Chinese economy, many are frustrated and alarmed that the process works both ways. China is buying the largest amount of Texas cotton. China is buying the largest amount of Texas pecans. When the state-run China National Offshore Oil Corporation Ltd. (CNOOC) announced a deal with Chesapeake Energy to drill 600,000 acres of the Eagle Ford Shale Formation, which stretches from San Antonio to the border, many alarmists increased their shouts to shut the door. When China bumped up its interest rate earlier today, the markets in the U.S. dropped sharply. And also today, China reportedly halted exports of rare earths used in numerous manufacturing processes as a reaction to U.S. complaints about international trade agreement violations. Rare earth elements are incorporated into many technological devices, including superconductors, samarium-cobalt and neodymium-iron-boron high-flux rare-earth magnets, electronic polishers, refining catalysts and hybrid car components (primarily batteries and magnets. Rare earth ions are used as the active ions in luminescent materials used in optoelectronics applications, most notably the Nd:YAG laser. Erbium-doped fiber amplifiers are significant devices in optical-fiber communication systems. China reportedly mines 95 percent of the planet’s rare earths.
Many view these events with alarm. Many go as far as shouting that China’s economy will swallow the world. Economist Clyde Prestowitz has been trumpeting this as one of the selling points of his new book, Betrayal of American Prosperity. According to Prestowitz, the number one export to China is scrap metal and waste paper. According to Prestowitz, the Chinese trade deficit is the number one threat to the American, and therefore Texan, way of life.
Yet there are many who believe fortunes for Texans are to be made in China.
Earlier this month, Texas Instruments announced it bought a Chinese chip-making firm, Chengdu Cension Semiconductor Manufacturing Corporation Ltd. That plant generates about $1 billion in revenues a year. Many companies in Texas, Dell among them, use cheap labor in China to assemble products to make profits that come back to the U.S.
In addition, there are Texas fortunes to be made in Texas because of China. Texas cotton? In a record year for crop volumes, cotton is at its highest price in 140 years. Chinese drilling in the Eagle Shale Formation? This is a huge investment in Texas, huge even though Texas is in the midst of a drilling boom.
And today, one Chinese company is a key partner in a group of four which are making possible a $2 billion corporate center and airport in Central Texas in Bastrop County. ecoSolargy, a subsidiary of Tianwei Clean Energy of Chengdu, China, develops solar technology and makes thin films for solar-energy collection and other applications. The company plans to make solar panels at the Bastrop County center and target markets in the Southwest, Mexico and Central and South America.
Yes, China is making profits in Texas. And vice versa.
The Texas News Scrawl is a handy reference to stories Texas Business recommends from other news sources. Some of the stories that Texas Business currently suggests include: Texas regulators not aware of potential CFTC manipulation probe,Irving spends incentive dollars to lure two corporate headquarters and almost 2,000 jobs;Hotels, restaurant operators prep for record Final Four;Star-Telegram presses roll one last time; Robert Rodriguez breathes new life into an old vampire favorite; ClubCorp buys Prestonwood Country Club in Dallas and Plano; Office Depot overcharged Dallas by up to $3.6 million, city auditor finds; Texas power market monitor resigns amid unresolved reform debate; and more.