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johnm33

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China
« on: June 02, 2024, 01:14:43 PM »
I think a general thread about China is called for given the elective deterioration in relations route the west as chosen. Here Chas Freeman lays out is views on the subject.

Quote

The Fruits of Discord:  Seven Years of Sino-American Antagonism

Ambassador Chas W. Freeman, Jr.

Seven years ago, then President Trump launched a U.S. trade war on China. In accordance with contemporary American praxis, this was a “forever war” – a constantly widening and escalating campaign with an ever-heavier military component, open-ended objectives, no criteria for judging success or failure, and no strategy for its termination. Seven years into open economic and technological war on China, it is surely time to take stock of results to date. So, I want to address the many ways in which Sino-American antagonism is changing China, Asia, the United States, and the world politico-economic order.

The Biden administration has proclaimed three high-minded goals for U.S. policy toward China:

    Invest: to invest in the foundations of our strength at home – our competitiveness, our innovation, our resilience, our democracy,
    Align: to align our efforts with our network of allies and partners, acting with common purpose and in common cause, and
    Compete: to compete responsibly with the PRC to defend our interests and build our vision for the future.”

This agenda effectively plays to the crowd. It deems China to be an adversary and conspicuously omits any reference to cooperation with it. Its three points boil down to:

    getting our national act back together,
    convincing other countries to help us retard or reverse the rise of China and
    blocking China from gaining international influence at the expense of our continued global primacy.

How are we doing at this?

First, are we becoming more competitive relative to China or less?
The World Economic Forum – the Swiss-based voice of financialized capitalism – continues to rank the United States as the world’s most competitive economy. Perhaps we deserve this ranking in terms of our capital markets and financial services, though, as Woody Allen once complained: “not only is there no God, just try to find a plumber on Sunday.”  But the most relevant and comprehensive measure of “competitiveness” is the annual ranking by the World Competitiveness Center at the International Institute of Management Development (IMD). The IMD measures competitiveness by factoring 340 distinct criteria over time.  In 2002, the IMD ranked the United States number one in competitiveness. By 2020, it had downgraded us to number ten. China’s current policies may, like ours, now be causing it to slip a bit, but over the same period it rose from 28th to 17th. The trends seem clear, and they do not favor us.

Of course, indices, even the best of them, are artificial. They fall into Mark Twain’s category of lies, damn lies, and statistics. But the actual performance of economies is not artificial. And, objectively – looking at national output – it is hard to argue that the United States is in fact becoming more competitive with China. China now accounts for a remarkable 36 percent of world industrial production. We produce only about one-third of that. US manufacturing jobs have declined by one-third since they peaked in 1979 even as the US workforce has grown by 60 percent.

Gross comparisons aside, China’s real economy now outpaces the United States in many sectors. Its grain output of seven hundred million tons is 1.2 times ours. Its power generation of 9.2 trillion kilowatts is 2.3 times larger. China produces nineteen times more steel and twenty times more cement than we do. Its auto production and sales figures are now triple ours. China’s shipbuilding industry annually produces seventy times as much tonnage as ours does, something reflected in a Chinese merchant fleet now second only to that of Greece and the world’s largest navy.

China has displaced the United States as the top economic partner of most of the world’s countries and is now by far the world’s largest trading country. The efficiency of China’s transportation infrastructure, including high-speed trains, superhighways, urban subway systems, modern ports, and airports, is the envy of the world. China’s installed solar power already exceeds that of all other countries combined. Its wind power installations now produce more power than those of the next seven countries put together. China will meet its renewable energy goals for 2030 five years early – in 2025 – next year. The clean energy sector now contributes 40 percent of Chinese annual growth in GDP.

In short, in addition to its huge lead in industrial production, China is indisputably becoming more rather than less economically competitive with the US and other developed countries. This is reflected in its growing influence in Pacific Asia, where the U.S. long dominated foreign investment but dropped out of the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) in 2017, leaving expanded access to the world’s fastest growing markets to others. Last year, Chinese investment in the region was up by 37 percent and China logged a 14 percent increase in construction contracts.

Are we still more innovative?

Second, to return to our stated goals, are we still more innovative than China?
In 2020 alone, China graduated 3.57 million scientists, technologists, engineers, and mathematicians (STEM workers). That same year, we graduated 820,000, about one- third of them foreigners, many of them Chinese. For the past thirty years, China has dominated the international Olympiads in biology, chemistry, physics, mathematics, and informatics. The United States has more “unicorns” – startup companies with valuations of more than $1 billion – than China but, despite its rejection of financialized capitalism, China now has more billionaire entrepreneurs than we do.

Last year, the Australian Strategic Technology Institute’s (ASTI’s) “critical technology tracker” reported that China has seized the lead in thirty-seven of the forty-four technologies it tracks. Many of the technologies in which China is now widely considered to be the global leader are those that will define the world of the future. They include wireless communications like 5 and 6G, electric vehicles, battery storage, fintech, quantum communications, hypersonics, robotics, green hydrogen, nuclear fusion, and renewable energy. Despite our efforts to deny China access to advanced semiconductors, it remains neck and neck with the US in the development of artificial intelligence and super computers.

China has just announced a ten percent increase in funding for science and technology projects. Meanwhile, the latest US federal budget slashes spending on science and technology, with an 8.3 percent contraction in funding for the National Science Foundation (NSF), a 12 percent cut in appropriations for the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST), and a 5.9 percent reduction in National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) science programs. The United States is substituting strong rhetoric about competing with China for strong and effective actions. This is not a winning strategy.

The prerequisites for continued American excellence in innovation include an educational system that emphasizes STEM subjects and an immigration system and domestic political atmosphere that attract the absolute best foreign talent. Historically, about 30 percent of US Nobel Prize winners have been foreign born. But even as foreign universities – notably the top schools in China – gain ground, the continuing excellence of America’s top universities masks the increasing inadequacy of American education at the elementary and high school levels. The latest ranking by the Program for International Student Assessment (PISA) puts China and Singapore at the top, with the United States in 22nd place. Some German companies report that they need to give US high school graduates a half-year of remedial instruction to bring them up to the level of their German counterparts. Taiwanese and Korean efforts to establish semiconductor fabs in the United States have been frustrated by shortages of sufficiently skilled labor.

As the disproportionate number of Nobel Prize winners based in the US suggests, our country has long been a magnet for the world’s best scientists. But our immigration system is now broken and the subject of rancorous political controversy. This, plus the special hostility of the US national security state to Chinese STEM students and faculty, has had a measurably deleterious effect on our ability to attract the most capable minds from abroad. Twenty years ago, American universities enrolled 60 percent of the foreigners studying in English-speaking countries. Now we get only about 40 percent. Meanwhile, a growing number of prominent Chinese Americans – some of our most innovative scientists and mathematicians – are responding to perceived harassment by US national security agencies by relocating to China. We are in danger of recreating the “Red Scare” in the 1950s that led Qian Xuesen (钱学森), an acclaimed aeronautical and cybernetic engineer at Caltech, to leave the United States for China, where he became the father of the Chinese intercontinental ballistic missile and space programs. Such losses in our capacity to harness China’s best minds to our future ensure that a good many of them will improve China’s scientific and technological progress rather than ours.

US resilience

Third, what is the evidence of US “resilience” and “the persistent strength of US democracy?”
Both China and the United States seem to be suffering from an economic version of “long COVID.”  The US has resorted to massive deficit spending to recover faster than China from this. But, despite Washington’s embrace of protectionism, subsidies, and industrial policies, our recovery has not produced the intended “reshoring” of overseas production by American corporations. It has instead lengthened and complicated supply chains by adding intermediary stops in places like Vietnam and Mexico, both of which have seen explosive growth in their exports to the US market. There has been a minor increase in industrial jobs but, despite a tsunami of illegal immigration by people eager to work, many jobs in the US have remained unfilled. Rents have risen, as have interest rates on credit card debt. Price increases have outpaced wages. The ranks of the disgruntled have grown.

Meanwhile, US pressure on China has encouraged it to become more nationalistic and repressive. It is therefore a less attractive place than it was. China has diminished “soft power.”  But its politics are not in crisis. Ours are. We can’t seem to devise and implement strategies. China can.

In America, polarization has replaced consensus. Incivility precludes productive debate of issues of public policy importance. Priorities therefore do not get set. Previously unifying national myths have become divisive. The basic values that underpin a decent and harmonious society are in dispute. A cult of personality has taken hold in one of the two major American political parties, while the other party is disorganized, despondent, and without a credible leadership succession plan. American politics have been captured by competing extremists and plutocrats.

Boastfulness about the resilience of the American spirit does not make up for the lack of any tangible evidence of national rejuvenation. The public has very little confidence in government institutions. No one expects the upcoming US presidential election, which features a re-run between old men of dubious competence, to restore national unity. It is unclear whether this election will be followed by the usual peaceful transition of power. American democracy is now best described as both decadent and dispirited. Happy talk about “the persistent strength of US democracy” has no credibility either at home or abroad.

To return to the list of US objectives. Fourth, are Americans “aligning” with allies and partners in common purposes and causes?
The Ukraine War may have united the West against Russia, but it has alienated the US, G7, and NATO from the rest of the world. Washington extolls the current transatlantic consensus on the need to oppose Russia, but it remains to be seen how long this will last after the war in Ukraine ends.

In any event, intensive US efforts to align NATO members against China have registered only limited success. In many respects, the West seems bent on isolating itself from the rising and resurgent powers in Asia, Africa, and Latin America. They no longer accept the legitimacy of Western leadership of world affairs, still less that of the United States.

The norms established in the European Enlightenment and imposed on the world by five centuries of North Atlantic hegemony inspired the American-designed post-World War II order. Various unilateral actions by the United States – all of them condemned by China and other rising powers and many barely tolerated by US allies – have now blatantly violated these norms. Such US actions have included (but were sadly not limited to):

    The use of force by the U.S. and NATO to wrest Kosovo from Serbia in 1999 in violation of the UN Charter.
    The resort to kidnapping, torture, and indefinite detention without charge at Guantánamo as part of the so-called US “global war on terror” from 2001 on.
    The unilaterally contrived US invasion and occupation of Iraq in 2003.
    The NATO and US regime-change operation in Libya in 2011 and the subsequent abandonment of that country to continuing anarchy and chaos.
    Devastatingly destructive US regime-change operations in Syria from 2011 on.
    The overt US role in the 2014 Euro-Maidan coup that overthrew the elected government in Ukraine and replaced it with one subservient to American strategic interests.
    Repeated US unilateral bombing of government troops and facilities in Syria beginning in 2016, and the overt US military occupation of Syrian territory and plundering of Syrian oil reserves since 2017.
    Unilateral American withdrawals from arms control treaties and carefully negotiated agreements with other countries (for example, the nuclear accord with Iran), despite these having been endorsed by the UN Security Council and therefore become part of international law.
    The progressive abandonment of the terms of Sino-American normalization by once again taking sides in the Chinese civil war, maintaining relations with Taipei that are now indistinguishable from official ties, restoring our military presence in Taiwan, and renewing an overt defense commitment to the island.
    Resistance to the repeated demands of the Iraqi government that US forces withdraw and the conduct of repeated violations of Iraqi sovereignty, for example, assassinations of anti-American politicians on Iraqi soil.
    The contortions of Admiral Kirby and other administration spokespersons notwithstanding, it is impossible to reconcile US support for Israel’s genocide in Gaza, attacks on other countries’ diplomatic establishments, pogroms against Palestinians in the occupied West Bank, or promiscuous assassination of its foreign political opponents with either international law or human decency.
    The two-decade-long US failure in Afghanistan, the inept US diplomacy that provoked the Russian invasion of Ukraine in 2022, and the current US enablement of Israel’s universally condemned genocidal war on Palestinians have consolidated an extremely negative view of the United States outside the West. This view sees the United States as amoral, cynically hegemonic, and indifferent to the interests and strongly held views of other countries, murderously devoted to the use of force rather than the peaceful resolution of disputes, diplomatically incompetent, and self-righteously propagandistic.

Despite the widespread devaluation of the American image internationally, the United States claims to have been successful in rallying China’s neighbors to oppose it. Washington’s celebration of its ability to persuade these neighbors to accept continuing American military protection even as it reduces its economic and political engagement in their region is unwittingly revealing. It imputes to China’s neighbors a level of apprehension about China they do not share. Despite their concerns about China’s return to wealth and power, with the notable exception of Japan, the countries of Pacific Asia have consistently made it clear they do not welcome Sino-American confrontation and do not want to have to align themselves with either Washington or Beijing. They all – even Japan – want to leverage China’s rising prosperity to advance their own. But the US not only ignores their desire to work out a safe and satisfactory modus vivendi with China as it returns to its millennial centrality in its region, but we actively oppose their efforts to do so.

No one is fooled by Washington’s assertion that it is not trying to force Pacific Asian countries to choose it over Beijing. This claim is belied by US policy statements and actions. The operative driver of US policy is clearly not the defense of Pacific Asia against a putative military threat from China. It is an obsessive desire to retain military primacy in the region. Ironically, the resulting confrontation with China has imposed new defense requirements on Beijing and provoked a massive military build-up by it. The result is a US arms race with China that it, not the United States, gives every sign of winning.
Quote
snip
Chas Freeman.
 
From GlobalSouth, and they got it from Godfree Roberts whose writings on China are essential reading for anyone who wants to become informed. He does have a bias in favour of China but it's warranted by their behaviour imo.

SteveMDFP

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Re: China
« Reply #1 on: June 03, 2024, 04:41:02 PM »
I think a general thread about China is called for given the elective deterioration in relations route the west as chosen. Here Chas Freeman lays out is views on the subject. ...

We already have a thread about China:
But, but, but, China....
https://forum.arctic-sea-ice.net/index.php/topic,956.msg380213.html

kassy

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Re: China
« Reply #2 on: June 03, 2024, 08:07:44 PM »
But that is limited to China and AGW related policies.
A thread for the general geopolitics is fine here.
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johnm33

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Re: China
« Reply #3 on: June 04, 2024, 10:35:26 AM »
Huawei are rapidly catching up on chip tech, surprising the experts who wanted to limit their progress. 4:35min

johnm33

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Re: China
« Reply #4 on: June 06, 2024, 05:04:59 PM »
China is gaming an AI hospital using real patients, hoping to build a full remote service using data gathered by technicians using various techniques and able to eventually deal with a million patients simultaneously. Given that presciption medicines are one of the leading causes of death in the west we too should do this.

The anti China spin to justify an attack on them is under way it's designed to be like the air you breathe and at some point you will call for such an attack, it should be sooner rather than later since China currently lags behind in submarine tech so unlike Russia they cannot yet stealthily deploy an attack force strong enough to destroy most US cities, incidental to taking out all it's military bases, from the safety of the three oceans which surround continental N.Am.

johnm33

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Re: China
« Reply #5 on: June 25, 2024, 12:08:43 PM »
Here Kevin Walmsley talks about the Chinese investment market and their politicians attitude towards it.



and here's a write up of a Shanghai co.s efforts to enter the fusion race.
https://www.sciencetimes.com/articles/50882/20240624/china-superconducting-fusion-reactor-plasma-discharge-hh70-tokamak-artificial-sun.htm
« Last Edit: June 25, 2024, 03:19:17 PM by johnm33 »

johnm33

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Re: China
« Reply #6 on: July 02, 2024, 11:14:16 AM »
Another post from Kevin Walmsley outlining China's growing advantage with 5g

From https://globalsouth.co/ an article rom Godfree Roberts 'here comes China' substack
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The apology

Because his signature is mandatory on all treaties (and he was Nixon’s confidant), millionaire, diplomat, lawyer and Secretary of State William Rogers (second from L), accompanied him to Beijing. However Kissinger, a ruthless infighter, kept him in the dark about the agreement that he and Nixon were negotiating with the Chinese. Though it had been initialed by both sides, he found two serious flaws that gave China an asymmetrical advantage, but Kissinger and Nixon refused to ask the Chinese to alter an historic document they has signed amid mutual congratulations.

Rogers’ decades of treaty-drafting had been bypassed and ignored, the State Department had been humiliated, and historians would attribute the faulty agreement to his ‘weakness’. It was humiliating. He began packing to return to the US (so to scuttle the deal, which he had not signed) when came a knock on his door.

“I opened the door expecting the bellman and there stood a smiling Prime Minister Zhou En Lai, with two shot glasses in one hand and a bottle of rare Scotch in the other”. Pouring two shots, Zhou explained, “I’ve come to apologize. I became so excited at the prospect of reaching an agreement that I failed to consult you as protocol requires”. Zhou asked Rogers to reword the agreement to his liking and sent the changes to the Ministry. An hour later, he and Zhou signed it and honor was saved.
and from the same substack account an explanation of industy's preference for Chinese labour, this is from an old article I read a ew years ago.
https://herecomeschina.substack.com/p/labor-in-china-and-america
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A friend, a director-level employee with an engineering background, who has worked with multinational companies in various capacities while primarily based in the US, wrote me, "American manufacturing moved to China not because of dumb labor, but because you could hire high IQ people for dirt cheap. If your machine broke down, no problem; some Chinese guy (with basically a masters in EE) would pull out the circuit boards and using probes and other instrumentation determine what board needed replacing and he would work annually for a fraction of the salary of his equivalent in
Manufacturing in the US
Manufacturing here is a nightmare: at our US facility our only requirement for a assembler was a high school degree, US citizenship, passing a drug and criminal background check and then passing a simple assembly test: looking at an assembly engineering drawing and then putting the components together. The vast majority of Americans were unable to complete the assembly test, while for our facility in China they completed it in half the time and 100% of the applicants passed. An assembler position in the US would average maybe 30 interviews a day and get 29 rejections, not to mention all the HR hassles of assemblers walking off shift, excessive lateness, stealing from work, slow work speed and poor attitudes.

johnm33

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Re: China
« Reply #7 on: July 06, 2024, 11:47:03 PM »
Here US auto engineers bought a cheap BYD ev, sells for $11,500 in S.Am., stripped it down to assess it then..... Kevin Walmsley again

johnm33

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Re: China
« Reply #8 on: July 07, 2024, 11:14:07 AM »
There's an interview with Carl Zhar in the link which gives a potted history of the last century or so of China it's a bit long but I think it's an honest accounting so worth it if you've any interest in the subect. There's a couple of other utube links too.
https://globalsouth.co/2024/07/02/collective-west-stepping-up-air-sea-drills-in-chinas-backyard/

Freegrass

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Re: China
« Reply #9 on: July 11, 2024, 01:47:56 AM »
This must-see 52-minute video explains how China maintains a socialist system despite having private companies, markets, and a stock market. It addresses common misconceptions and provides an in-depth analysis of China’s economic model.

I've often wondered how their economy actually worked, and this video explains it beautifully. I get it now. China is doing it the right way. Power to the people, not the billionaires.

When factual science is in conflict with our beliefs or traditions, we cuddle up in our own delusional fantasy where everything starts making sense again.

gerontocrat

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Re: China
« Reply #10 on: July 11, 2024, 12:34:01 PM »
Power to the people, not the billionaires.
Power to the People Party

Principle 1 of The Thought of Xi Jing
"Para a Causa do Povo a Luta Continua!"
"And that's all I'm going to say about that". Forrest Gump
"Damn, I wanted to see what happened next" (Epitaph)

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Re: China
« Reply #11 on: July 11, 2024, 04:39:45 PM »
Power to the people, not the billionaires.
Power to the People Party

Principle 1 of The Thought of Xi Jing
Power to the People Party Xi Jing
All indications are that Xi has been consolidating his personal power with more and more decisions made by Xi personally.

Freegrass

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Re: China
« Reply #12 on: July 11, 2024, 06:23:55 PM »
Power to the people, not the billionaires.
Power to the People Party

Principle 1 of The Thought of Xi Jing
Yes, of course. It's a one party system (although not entirely, I just found out). However, their party is dedicated to serving the interests of the nation and the people, rather than serving the interests of the billionaire class, who in the West elect their preferred candidates with their billions. Absorbing all the wealth, leaving only crumbs for the rest of us, and destroying the planet along the way.

I've heard a lot about China in the western media. I propose we do a little research for ourselves before we judge them. They've existed as a country for almost 5000 years. So let's show them a little bit of respect too. They must have done something right.

I've watched a few videos now, and this first one is excellent. It compares Chinese and American political philosophies, highlighting their historical and cultural differences. It explores the influence of Confucianism in China and liberalism in the United States, and how these philosophies shape their respective political systems and societal values.

The second video explains China’s political system, focusing on the structures of the state and the Communist Party of China (CPC). It details the roles of various branches of government and the CPC’s organization, highlighting the meritocratic nature of the party’s structure and the concept of “whole process people’s democracy.”       



When factual science is in conflict with our beliefs or traditions, we cuddle up in our own delusional fantasy where everything starts making sense again.

kassy

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Re: China
« Reply #13 on: July 11, 2024, 08:53:25 PM »
The CCP is the billionaire class in China. They are not into the interest of the people. Remember their lock down policy?

Also maybe check the wealth distribution in China or the different rights of people living in cities and internal migrant workers.

What is interesting that these views of China usually come from an anti US (anti west) view and then they take all kinds of propaganda as truth. It´s a sort of the enemy of the enemy is my friend syndrome while if you look closer China does look oddly similar but the upper class is much more restricted. Remember Jack Ma?

For the CCP their control is most important thing. Which is usual for one party states. Another problem is strong leaders and yes men. Pretty soon you get a culture where all kinds of choices are decided upon but not debated. That did not work well for the Soviet Union and China has its problems with this too.

For people the US is still a better place which is why there are more Chinese crossing into the US by illegal routes then US citizens trying to sneak into China.
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Re: China
« Reply #14 on: July 11, 2024, 09:31:45 PM »
china is centralized authoritarian 'capitalism' and i wouldn't want to live there. let's not pretend that the united states and their western vassal countries aren't crossing that threshold either though. it's corporatism and oligarchy writ large and the 'elite' class have mapped out a far more draconian future for us, which pokes it's head above the surface more frequently all the time. when the next economic meltdown happens, and it will because it always does in 'capitalism', shit is going to get really real in all sorts of divergent ways.

the traditional leftist greek economist yanis varoufakis has plenty interesting to say.
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morganism

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Re: China
« Reply #15 on: July 12, 2024, 07:43:19 PM »
Seems China is also a massively bigoted country to its core in gov. They are re-creating the Han Dynasty, and have the same "little brothers" view that RU has.

Strife and struggling with the CCP which is solid regionally based military.