William J. Holstein

William J. Holstein's blog

Secrets of Corporate Longevity

What To Do About U.S. Companies Fleeing America

There's a controversy over the number of U.S. companies that are merging with foreign entities and declaring that they are no longer U.S. companies for purposes of U.S. taxation. This is an old story I have been following for four decades. I first interviewed Dow Chemical CEO Carl Gerstacker in 1974. He wanted to find an island offshore where he could incorporate and be nation-less. Then in 1988 I wrote a cover story for Business Week called The Stateless Corporation. The conclusion was that only American CEOs like to play with the notion they can be stateless.

The Intellectual Bankruptcy of Larry Summers

This is one of the most influential minds in the economics profession, writing in today's Wall Street Journal. Yet Summers, the former secretary of the Treasury and a professor at Harvard, does not accept that manufacturing has a major role to play in America's future. He says its decline is "inexorable." Every other advanced nation in the world knows that manufacturing is at the heart of their long-term strategies to create wealth and high-paying jobs, but Summer does not "get it."

East Asia Watch: Look For More Surprises from Japan

Prime Minister Shinzo Abe has for the first time crossed a very important line in the sand. He and his Cabinet have decided that Japan will interpret the no-war provisions of its U.S.-imposed Constitution in a way that would allow Japan to come to the aid of the United States or another ally in the event of, say, a North Korean missile attack.

The move is really aimed at countering China's increasingly clear assertion of military power in the seas of East Asia. The Japanese know that the Chinese are determined to test the limits in a long-term game of endurance and willpower.

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