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08/01/2005 Archived Entry: "Is China a threat to the U.S.?"
Gordon P. answers the question "Do you think China is a threat to the US?" Click on 'more' to continue...
Gordon writes, That depends on what you mean by the word "threaten."
Do I think China will threaten to declare war on the U.S.A.? No, not unless some U.S. administration stupidly tries to monkey around in what the Chinese administration perceives as "their" territory. (However, there will probably continue to be a certain amount of "sabre rattling" as long as the dispute over Taiwan's right to exist as a sovereign state continues.)
Do I think that China and the U.S. governments will find themselves in the same sort of insane "Cold War" nuclear standoff of "Mutually Assured Destruction" that the Soviet and U.S. governments used to be in? Maybe. It depends on whether some Chinese administration starts building a lot more "strategic" nuclear weapons (i.e., thermonukes having or exceeding a half-megaton of "yield"), plus the ICBMs and nuclear submarines required to deliver them as a "First Strike."
Do I think that China will "threaten" to outcompete the U.S. in terms of economic hegemony? China is already "threatening" to do that, merely by being the largest potential manufacturer and market in the entire world! However, whether China will actually become the largest potential manufacturer and market in the world will depend on whether the old men in Beijing who try to run China continue to enforce the failed "Command and Control" model of Communist pseudo-economics on China in order to maintain their own political power and privileges, or open up China to Market Economics, which would mean the end of Communism just as surely as it collapsed when Gorbachev tried to let just a "little bit" of market economics into Soviet Russia during the "Glasnost" period. It is not feasible to allow just a "little bit" of market economics within a communist state --- the market is so much more efficient than the communist "Command and Control" model that the market sector will quickly outperform and overwhelm the communist pseudo-economy.
Unless the Old Men in Beijing are willing to bite the bullet, abandon the strangling inefficiency of communist "Command and Control" pseudo-economics altogether, and accept that it will mean that they will lose much of their current personal near-absolute power and control over China, China's economy will continue to hobble along with one hand tied behind its metaphorical back compared to the market-driven western economies. But if the Old Men in Beijing would abandon the failed dogma of communist pseudo-economics and allow true markets to form and operate within China, there is no question that China would "threaten" to overwhelm the entire world economically, since it already is threatening to do that even while operating under the massive, crippling handicap of communism...