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#15029392
Stuff for @annatar1914 .


https://www.hindawi.com/journals/complexity/2018/9306128/


First off, a paper about simulations of state power competition. The simulation is cyberspace focused, but it shows that the established hegemon can maintain their position in a world with less cooperation and higher barriers to acquiring power. This matches Trump’s strategic actions.


https://www.aspistrategist.org.au/from-the-bookshelf-the-great-delusion-liberal-dreams-and-international-realities/


Second, a book review about realism in international relations and the failure of liberal idealism. Again, well describing Trump’s strategic rational.


These both back up your arguments.
#15029399
This article is from last year, but does such a good job of illustrating the lack of understanding of the old liberal establishment, that it is worth posting here.

http://www.niallferguson.com/journalism/politics/wed-better-get-used-to-emperor-donaldus-trump

We’d better get used to Emperor Donaldus Trump

The president’s age-old strategy is to bully China and Europe. It seems to be working
To most highly educated people I know, Donald Trump is a terrible, horrible, no good, very bad president. But might he have the makings of a rather effective emperor? The death of the republic is not something that I, a soon-to-be-citizen, would welcome. Yet it’s a possibility that needs to be considered, precisely because so many smart people persist in underestimating Trump. For two years the People with At Least Two University Degrees (Paltuds) have been gnashing their teeth about Trump’s every utterance and move. To the foreign policy experts he is a bull in a china shop, trampling the “rules-based international order”. To the economics establishment he is a human wrecking ball, smashing more than half a century of consensus that free trade really works better than protectionism. No, no, no, the international-relations types exclaim. Don’t upset your European allies. Don’t walk out of the Paris climate accord. Don’t threaten North Korea. Don’t agree to a summit with Kim Jong-un. Don’t scrap the Iran deal. This will all end in disaster — either the Third World War or a peaceful Chinese takeover of the world. Or a Russian takeover of Europe. Or something terrible, horrible, no good, very bad. Stop, stop, stop, wail the economists. Don’t impose tariffs on anyone — especially not your allies. Don’t demand reductions in the US-China trade deficit. Don’t pass huge tax cuts. This will all end in disaster — either a Great Depression or galloping inflation. Or something terrible, horrible, no good, very bad. A striking feature of all this dire commentary is how wrong it has been so far. Despite all the Cassandra talk, America could still meet its Paris target for reducing carbon dioxide emissions. Europeans have largely accepted that they need to spend more on their own defence. Kim has halted his missile and warhead tests and come to the negotiating table (if not quite on his hands and knees, as Rudy Giuliani claimed last week). And Iran is reeling from the reimposition of sanctions and a concerted US-Israeli-Arab military pushback. Despite all the trade war talk, the US economy is at full employment, the dollar is rallying, the stock market is up 30% since Trump’s election and the only countries in any trouble are the usual suspects with their usual problems (such as Turkey). It is not that Trump is an underrated genius, or an idiot savant. It is just that his intuitive, instinctive, impulsive way of operating, familiar to those who have done business with him, is exposing some basic flaws in the conceptual framework of the Paltuds. Yes, there is much to be said in principle for an international order based on explicit rules; and, yes, those rules should favour free trade over protectionism. But if, in practice, your liberal international order allows China to overtake you, first economically and then strategically, there is probably something wrong with it. The key to the Trump presidency is that it is probably the last opportunity America has to stop or at least slow China’s ascendancy. And while it may not be intellectually very satisfying, Trump’s approach to the problem, which is to assert US power in unpredictable and disruptive ways, may in fact be the only viable option left. Think of the world as a three-empire system. Forget the World Cup and its fantasy that all nations have an equal shot and giant-killing Davids can sometimes slay Goliaths. In the real World Cup of power, Goliaths rule. As Thucydides says the Athenians told the Melians: “The strong do what they can and the weak suffer what they must.” The strong in today’s world are the United States, China and Europe, in that order. Each empire is evolving in a different direction. The American empire, having experienced overextension in Afghanistan and Iraq, has not retreated into isolation but continues to exert lethal force and still dominates the world’s oceans. Its latest step down the road to empire is domestic: Trump’s claim that he can pardon himself is part of the fundamental challenge he poses to the formal and informal rules of the republic. A moment of truth is fast approaching when Robert Mueller’s report exposes all kinds of crimes and misdemeanours, some of them very probably of the “high” variety that would justify impeachment. Probably the Democrats will win back the House of Representatives in November and proceed to impeach Trump. But what will happen if his approval rating holds up — perhaps even improves? What if he simply brazens it out, as Richard Nixon did not? That would be the Roman moment. All the accompanying symptoms of the transition from republic to empire are visible. The plebs despise the elites. An old and noble senatorial order personified by John McCain is dying. A cultural civil war rages on social media, the modern-day forum, with all civility cast aside and character assassination a daily occurrence. The president-emperor dominates public discourse by issuing 280-character edicts, picking fights with gladiators — sorry, American football players — and arbitrarily pardoning convicted criminals. Meanwhile, the Chinese empire becomes ever-more centralised, ever-more invasive of its citizens’ privacy and ever-more overt in its overseas expansion. The western world regards Xi Jinping as an almighty potentate. Few observers appreciate the acute sense of weakness that has motivated his tightening grip on party and state and his surveillance of his own people. Few see the risks of imperial ventures such as the Belt and Road initiative, which is drawing Chinese investment into economically unpromising and strategically dangerous locations. The weakest of the three empires is the EU. True, its institutions in Brussels have the power to impose rules, fines and taxes on the biggest US and Chinese corporations. But Europe lacks its own tech giants. Its navies, armies and air forces have melted away. And the political consensus on which it has been based for the past 60 years — between social democrats and moderate conservatives in every member state — is crumbling under a nationalist-populist assault. The logic of Trumpism is simply to bully the other empires, exploiting the fact that they are both weaker than the United States, in order to extract concessions and claim victories. The Chinese fear a trade war and will end up buying a very large amount of American produce in order to avoid one. The Europeans dare not stand up to Trump over his Iran sanctions and secretly agree with him about China, and so are reduced to impotent seething (Angela Merkel) or sycophancy (Emmanuel Macron, until last week). If they unite against him (as on the eve of the G7), he brings up Russia and divides them again. To the Paltuds, all this is incomprehensible. They will continue to find fault with Trump’s every success, nitpicking their way through the small print, failing to realise that in the imperial transition such details cease to matter. Octavian, too, was terrible, horrible, no good, very bad in the eyes of many of his Roman contemporaries. As Augustus, however, he triumphed. It is one of history’s most disquieting lessons. It will be a pity if Paltuds and plebs alike have to relearn it the hard way. Niall Ferguson is the Milbank Family senior fellow at the Hoover Institution, Stanford
#15029428
blackjack21 wrote:People like Trump, because he fights. They hated George W. Bush for just taking it on the chin day after day, and he won a second term without a particularly hot economy. John Kerry's personality made that possible.


Dubya was an imbecile but kind of likable. Trump is hideous. A bunch of morons on the right might like him, but I think the majority of Americans do not.
#15029532
annatar1914 wrote:But what i'm seeing with these tariffs is really a coming period of resurgent nationalism and economic autarky, with three or four major blocs of alliances between groups of nations in vigorous competition around the world. This can only lead to major wars in the future.

But where, how, and why? If you look at WWI and WWII, we can see it as a conflict between empires and closed imperial markets. A rising economic power like Germany needed markets for its goods, markets controlled primarily by the United Kingdom and France. With those shut off to Germany, drang nach osten was Germany's answer--Berlin to Baghdad, or the invasion of the Soviet Union. After WWII, it was relatively quiescent in Europe. Yet, there was pretty much non-stop war in what was the former empires--a period we characterize as detente. China, Korea, Vietnam, Congo, Namibia, Iran-Iraq, Chile, Afghanistan, India-Pakistan, Cambodia, Myanmar, and so forth were in turmoil.

In the post-Cold War era, France characterized (Hubert Vedrine) the US as a hyperpuissance or hyperpower. European powers decided to start opposing the US simply because it had become the world's most powerful country. China and Russia rallied the BRICs to that end too. However, that gives rise to Americans asking questions about our so-called allies. Is it just a-okay for Germany to have had a 10% tariff on US cars decade after decade while the US had none on German cars? Is it just a-okay for Americans to spend 3% of GDP on their military while NATO allies do not--even though they have pledged to via treaty as a matter of international law? Is it just fine for the US to buy $500B worth of Chinese goods per year while the Chinese buy very little of ours, and only so they can reverse engineer what we sell them and make it themselves? Sooner or later, it doesn't make sense.

So what does China do when its number 1 customer says, "No more."? Start a war? Where? The clearest answer is its effort to control the South China Sea, but its most aggressive moves have been to build military islands out of coral reefs in the Spratlys. They could be devastated with a few of what we call "Daisy Cutters" or MOABs. The real fight would be on the seas and in the air in the South China Sea. The US Navy dwarfs pretty much every other navy in the world. The only navy that is of a similar capability is the Royal Navy, and it is a fraction of the size of the US navy. Japan has a pretty significant navy and are now looking to field F-35Bs off of its amphibious ships. Taiwan and South Korea have significant navies. So does India. All of these countries would be on the US side in a conflict in the South China sea. So it would be foolish for China to start such a war. Yet, they could do things on land that the US wouldn't want to address--invade Vietnam, for example.

annatar1914 wrote:For which our educational system is woefully unprepared to train for. I suspect a revised immigration system and continuance of our two-tiered networks of schools will address that... More STEM, more pre-Military training.

Yes, and probably more vocational training, which was more or less cancelled in the 1970s-1980s time frame. High schools used to have wood shop, metal shop, auto shop, etc. No more.

Hindsite wrote:I agree. But the Chairman is acting like an idiot.

Why the act? My theory is that to unload the balance sheet, they needed to raise interest rates to depress bond prices--the CDOs, MBSs, etc. that they held; then, sell them at depressed prices; then, drop interest rates to spark a rally in the debt markets. In effect, they are paying the private sector off to buy debt that is underperforming. I could be wrong. Central bankers aren't idiots, per se. They may be addressing issues that aren't obvious to the public. Although, I do think the 2008 crisis was something they didn't anticipate--and I think the miscalculation may have had to do with commodity price inflation and oil hitting $147 a barrel at the same time they were trying to pop a real estate bubble and they inadvertently blew up the banking system. Again, it's just speculation on my part. However, why nobody went to jail for that is telling--and why populism arose and gave us the Tea Party and Donald Trump.

Rugoz wrote:Dubya was an imbecile but kind of likable. Trump is hideous. A bunch of morons on the right might like him, but I think the majority of Americans do not.

I don't subscribe to the imbecile theory of presidents. I would characterize Obama as utterly inexperienced, but that is very different from saying he was an idiot. People who reach the White House may have objectives that differ materially from yours. For example, if you think GDP growth is the most important matter for politicians, Obama looks like an idiot. However, Obama wasn't trying to achieve high GDP growth. That wasn't his objective. Trump isn't trying to maximize global GDP growth. So he may look like an idiot to globalists, but Trump is not a globalist.

As far as "hideous" is concerned, I started a thread a few days after Trump announced for president entitled "Trump calls it like it is; the establishment can't take it". That thesis still stands today. Political correctness was designed to intimidate people from engaging in "wrongthink." Trump figured out how to turn it on its head. That's why I say many people like what Trump says, but they don't like him saying it. It's a matter of manners for them. Others, however, are simply establishment financed phonies. George F. Will, Christopher Buckley, Peggy Noonan and David Brooks among others preferred to vote for Barack Obama over John McCain and yet still try to convince people that they are conservatives, when clearly they are not.

Ultimately, it makes little sense to analyze politicians purely on their personality or personal characteristics. It's their policies that have lasting effects. That's why I think it is interesting to debate the actual effect of Trump's policies rather than whether you think he's an ass. Of course the guy is a blowhard, but that's something that actually works well for him. People have debated whether tariffs will work or not, but in many cases are failing to address the net effect. Trump hasn't raised tariffs generally. He's raised them against China. China has countered with tariffs of its own, cutting prices and debasing its currency. That's interesting, because it will have an inflationary affect in China and a deflationary effect in the US. So if we are to argue that Xi Jinping has better table manners than Donald Trump, I suppose I could concede that point. Yet, Jinping is not hurting the US in the marco economic sense. He's hurting his own country. Xinping's gamble is that if he can harm the farm belt, they will abandon Trump. If Xinping fails, China is probably in serious trouble.
#15029550
blackjack21 wrote:Why the act? My theory is that to unload the balance sheet, they needed to raise interest rates to depress bond prices--the CDOs, MBSs, etc. that they held; then, sell them at depressed prices; then, drop interest rates to spark a rally in the debt markets. In effect, they are paying the private sector off to buy debt that is underperforming. I could be wrong. Central bankers aren't idiots, per se. They may be addressing issues that aren't obvious to the public.

Okay, but how does that help the nation and the average citizen?
#15029556
Hindsite wrote:Okay, but how does that help the nation and the average citizen?

Well, my point is that they aren't thinking about the nation and the average citizen, but rather how to offload their balance sheet. They will also have to think about the economy going forward now, because of the threat of socialists taking power. There's enough anti-Semitism and anti-capitalism in the Democratic party these days, that they should be a little nervous about the recently inverted yield curve. That can't last too long without a recession.
#15029563
Meanwhile regarding Donald's Smoot Hawley 2 mess:

The Consumer Technology Association, which represents the largest electronics companies, has said that the tariffs are already costing the American tech sector $1.3 billion a month, and could raise the price of cellphones by $70 and the price of laptops by $120, on average.

JPMorgan Chase analysts recently predicted that the overall costs to American families of the tariffs were likely to be between $1,000 and $1,500 a year.

“Tariffs are taxes on Americans, putting us on the wrong economic path and compromising our global leadership,” the president and chief executive of the technology association, Gary Shapiro, said on Friday. “How much longer will our families, companies and economy be forced to bear the financial burden of this misguided trade policy?”
#15029565
blackjack21 wrote:You purport to support Trump on his actions against China. Has something changed, or is this just your evening constitutional rant?


Typical BJ21 self serving selectivity. I also purport that Obese Donald's bull in the China (pun) closet M.O. is nice in the NYC real estate business but a sure fire loss on the world stage. Don's legions of killer lawyers are totally useless in China. I imagine Xi's plan is quite simple at this point: jerk the Fat Guy off for 14 months and see what happens. He and China will be around long after the Fat guy is gone …. one way or the other.
#15029568
Clearly Trump is just causing disruption so his buddies can short the stock market and make money when he changes his mind the next day. Wake up!

How the hell did America's vaunted government of checks and balances let an incompetent game show host who lost the election by almost 3 million votes run amok on the world stage trashing America's reputation along with the world economy? :?:
#15029571
blackjack21 wrote:Well, my point is that they aren't thinking about the nation and the average citizen, but rather how to offload their balance sheet. They will also have to think about the economy going forward now, because of the threat of socialists taking power. There's enough anti-Semitism and anti-capitalism in the Democratic party these days, that they should be a little nervous about the recently inverted yield curve. That can't last too long without a recession.

Wouldn't lowering interest rates by the Fed be better to prevent a recession?
#15029580
jimjam wrote:I imagine Xi's plan is quite simple at this point: jerk the Fat Guy off for 14 months and see what happens. He and China will be around long after the Fat guy is gone …. one way or the other.

He's six years into his presidency. Hu Jintao and Jiang Zemin lasted 10 years. Chances are that Xi Jinping doesn't last longer than his predecessors. That means he's got less than 4 years left if history is any guide. The United States will be around a long time after Trump is gone as well; although, there doesn't seem to be much of a reason to have to point this out anymore than pointing out that China itself will outlive Trump.

jimjam wrote:Clearly Trump is just causing disruption so his buddies can short the stock market and make money when he changes his mind the next day. Wake up!

They may well do just that, but that hardly seems like the primary motivation.

jimjam wrote:How the hell did America's vaunted government of checks and balances let an incompetent game show host who lost the election by almost 3 million votes run amok on the world stage trashing America's reputation along with the world economy? :?:

Congress stopped doing its job ages ago. They've been delegating powers to the president for a long time so they don't get blamed for anything. Do you notice how Congress never takes responsibility for anything? At any rate, it's a case of "be careful what you wish for". Trump now has a lot of power that they never thought someone like him would possess. Was it wise to delegate all that Congressional power to a president?

Hindsite wrote:Wouldn't lowering interest rates by the Fed be better to prevent a recession?

Yes. They've already lowered once. I think the stock market has another leg down. Then, it will be time to buy it up again. The Fed may cut again if the markets get too wobbly--another cut is in the cards anyway. It's a question of time, or timing. At any rate, I think the Fed is going to want to have rates lower by the end of October. When Brexit finally hits, they want the US economy chugging at full steam to address any disruption in Europe which is likely to occur--as Germany is already in a recession.
#15029595
https://asia.nikkei.com/Spotlight/Comment/As-China-s-economy-slows-overreliant-world-exporters-start-to-hurt

This article suggests the pain is starting in China. It also illustrates how widespread to pain will be outside of China. As per the hegemon simulation I posted a link to a few posts earlier, the US will hurt, but not as much as everyone else will hurt. The most likely outcome is a poorer world overall, but the US will remain on top with China stuck in the middle income trap.



Edit: I have to include this youtuber’s take on it. This guy is a hoot!

https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=5zdImsW0QdE
#15029617
jimjam wrote:How the hell did America's vaunted government of checks and balances let an incompetent game show host who lost the election by almost 3 million votes...


One of my all-time favorite liberal whines!
User avatar
By jimjam
#15029644
blackjack21 wrote:Congress stopped doing its job ages ago. They've been delegating powers to the president for a long time so they don't get blamed for anything. Do you notice how Congress never takes responsibility for anything? At any rate, it's a case of "be careful what you wish for". Trump now has a lot of power that they never thought someone like him would possess. Was it wise to delegate all that Congressional power to a president?


jimjam agrees with BJ 21 ………. :eek: ……….. :)
#15029730
blackjack21 wrote:I don't subscribe to the imbecile theory of presidents.


There's a reason Trump talks like a 4th grader. Either he's stupid, or his audience is. I think it's more the latter than the former, but Trump has at the very least shown extreme ignorance in some cases.

Hindsite wrote:Wouldn't lowering interest rates by the Fed be better to prevent a recession?


That Fed will do what it can do, but that won't necessarily prevent a recession, only make it less severe. To some extent recessions are necessary corrections.

blackjack21 wrote:He's six years into his presidency. Hu Jintao and Jiang Zemin lasted 10 years. Chances are that Xi Jinping doesn't last longer than his predecessors.


Xi will likely last longer because he has removed China's "checks and balances" to a large degree.
#15029781
Atlantis wrote:@annatar1914, I really don't know where you get those crazy ideas from. Trump is a coward and his supporters are lazy slobs. They only like death and destruction on the TV screen as long as it doesn't concern them directly.

Trump may have been superficially infected by Bannon's creative destruction ideology, but that's not the original Trump. The original Trump worries about everything the may impact the profit line.

He isn't even any good as bully, because in the real world, people call his bluff and expose him for what he is: an over-sized toddler with the emotional maturity of a 5-year old. His idea is to intimidate the opponent with a lot of chest beating and then graciously dictate the terms on the opponent bending over backward. When the bluff fails, as in NK, his opponents leads him through the ring by his nose-ring.

Trump doesn't want war, but he may inadvertently trigger a war by behaving like the proverbial elephant in the porcelain shop. In the ME, there are dozens of militias and other non-state groups that can easily get out off control and produce a Sarajevo type incident.


I know I can't convince anyone whose ideas are already set in concrete. I guess people will have to learn the hard way, and they will.
#15029786
foxdemon wrote:Stuff for @annatar1914 .


https://www.hindawi.com/journals/complexity/2018/9306128/


First off, a paper about simulations of state power competition. The simulation is cyberspace focused, but it shows that the established hegemon can maintain their position in a world with less cooperation and higher barriers to acquiring power. This matches Trump’s strategic actions.


https://www.aspistrategist.org.au/from-the-bookshelf-the-great-delusion-liberal-dreams-and-international-realities/


Second, a book review about realism in international relations and the failure of liberal idealism. Again, well describing Trump’s strategic rational.


These both back up your arguments.


Thank you! They absolutely do back up my arguments, and do much to expose the rotten and delusional nature of the Liberal system much of the modern world labors under. Fortunately there are realists out there, of other political ideologies, that have any use now or in the future for it. The future is profoundly illiberal, and I for one rejoice in at least that much.

Glad you 'get it' about Trump. It may help you someday.
#15029790
@blackjack21 ;

You had asked me about my insistence on predicting the coming series of wars, and I'm reminded by your reply of Norman Angell, who wrote a book right before WWI saying it was impossible because evryone's economies were so interconnected that war would be a disaster....

And yet, here we are, in my opinion, almost at the cusp of it. You asked me then;


But where, how, and why? If you look at WWI and WWII, we can see it as a conflict between empires and closed imperial markets. A rising economic power like Germany needed markets for its goods, markets controlled primarily by the United Kingdom and France. With those shut off to Germany, drang nach osten was Germany's answer--Berlin to Baghdad, or the invasion of the Soviet Union. After WWII, it was relatively quiescent in Europe. Yet, there was pretty much non-stop war in what was the former empires--a period we characterize as detente. China, Korea, Vietnam, Congo, Namibia, Iran-Iraq, Chile, Afghanistan, India-Pakistan, Cambodia, Myanmar, and so forth were in turmoil.


Because of the crisis of overproduction in capitalism among other things, war is needed to devastate old markets and re-create ''new'' ones, and to seize the resources around the world of course. A little thinning out of the herd is good in the eyes of the Elites too.

In the post-Cold War era, France characterized (Hubert Vedrine) the US as a hyperpuissance or hyperpower. European powers decided to start opposing the US simply because it had become the world's most powerful country. China and Russia rallied the BRICs to that end too. However, that gives rise to Americans asking questions about our so-called allies. Is it just a-okay for Germany to have had a 10% tariff on US cars decade after decade while the US had none on German cars? Is it just a-okay for Americans to spend 3% of GDP on their military while NATO allies do not--even though they have pledged to via treaty as a matter of international law? Is it just fine for the US to buy $500B worth of Chinese goods per year while the Chinese buy very little of ours, and only so they can reverse engineer what we sell them and make it themselves? Sooner or later, it doesn't make sense.


China is the rising power, it's that simple.

So what does China do when its number 1 customer says, "No more."? Start a war? Where? The clearest answer is its effort to control the South China Sea, but its most aggressive moves have been to build military islands out of coral reefs in the Spratlys. They could be devastated with a few of what we call "Daisy Cutters" or MOABs. The real fight would be on the seas and in the air in the South China Sea. The US Navy dwarfs pretty much every other navy in the world. The only navy that is of a similar capability is the Royal Navy, and it is a fraction of the size of the US navy. Japan has a pretty significant navy and are now looking to field F-35Bs off of its amphibious ships. Taiwan and South Korea have significant navies. So does India. All of these countries would be on the US side in a conflict in the South China sea. So it would be foolish for China to start such a war. Yet, they could do things on land that the US wouldn't want to address--invade Vietnam, for example.


The war will be fought by proxy, at first.


Yes, and probably more vocational training, which was more or less cancelled in the 1970s-1980s time frame. High schools used to have wood shop, metal shop, auto shop, etc. No more.


Indeed, these kids need to know how to work, not just be the subsidized consumers of the products of big business.
#15029796
The next series of wars. Im pretty sure the last one will be famine. Would anyone like to disagree? Are you ready to beg a cannabal for a gun?

Im thinking gwb is drinking ghw's liver to death right about now.

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