Haaretz: America vs. China? In This New Cold War, The Choice Is No Longer Obvious - Politics Forum.org | PoFo

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#15106030
America vs. China? In This New Cold War, the Choice Is No Longer Obvious
The end of America's hegemony isn't the end of the world

In Polish Galicia in the early 20th century, Jewish families split up and members made their way to different parts of the world. Often one part of the family emigrated to America, a second part remained in Poland and a third settled in Palestine. The result is that many Ashkenazi families have a branch in the United States – or, as the phenomenon came to be known in Israel, an “uncle in America.”

My grandfather’s family, which originated in Chortkiv (in contemporary Ukraine), also had a branch that hoped to emigrate to America and perhaps pave the way for the rest of the family. They set out by ship for the New World. But as fate would have it, they were attacked by pirates in mid-ocean. Rumor has it that they were captured and taken to the Arabian Peninsula, where all trace of them was lost. So my grandfather used to say that instead of uncles in America, I might have uncles in Saudi Arabia.

This historical tragedy left me without relatives in America. I’m not complaining, because my family’s fate could have been far worse. Still, the story had a certain effect on the shaping of my personality.

True, as a child I too watched the television series “The Wonder Years” and “Full House.” As with every modern-day person, America is part of my life. But precisely because of that, it has always infuriated me that I was fated to lived in a world dominated by American culture. I was also always puzzled by people’s desire to fall into step with the latest caprices of that empire, in whose shadow I lived without ever having been asked if that’s what I wanted.

Every little sneeze of public opinion in America is felt like an earthquake around the world – and nowhere more so than in Israel. When movements and ideas from the United States are replicated all over the world, it mainly demonstrates global self-annulment in the face of that country. And this is true even in the case of progressive movements and ideas.

For instance, the achievements chalked up by the Black Lives Matter protest movement, which has jolted the United States in the past few weeks, stir emotions here, too, and generate calls to disseminate the message to every corner of the planet. But in fact, this phenomenon also suggests that the lives of Americans are to be considered worthier than the lives of any other group in the world.

The same holds true for the U.S. Supreme Court’s recent ruling on discrimination against employees because of their sexual inclination, a judgment that produced cries of joy among various LGBT communities around the globe – communities that are not even subject to the American judicial system. In general, the international LGBT movement is subordinate to the inordinately extreme domination of the United States: All the terminology, the various identities and sub-identities are American concepts. Every identity-related caprice that originates in Manhattan’s Soho or in the San Francisco Bay Area morphs into some universal edict that is meant to be enforced everywhere.

Some will say, justly: What are you gonna do? America is the leading political and cultural power in the world. Indeed, there isn’t much to be done. But it can be hoped that this power will fade. In recent weeks, against the backdrop of the chaos rampant in the United States, and in the light of America’s growing isolation in the international arena, we are again hearing claims that we are witnessing the decline of the United States as a superpower.

“How hegemony ends: The unraveling of American power,” the authoritative journal Foreign Affairs pronounced in one article; “The end of the American century,” declared The Nation; “The decline of the American world,” The Atlantic prophesied. Tom McTague, a writer for The Atlantic, noted the pity with which many people across the globe now view the United States, which had become, at least in part, dysfunctional. “We are accustomed to listening to those who loathe America, admire America, and fear America… But feeling pity for America? That one is new,” he wrote.

It’s best to be cautious about these forecasts. After the 2008 economic crisis, too, dire predictions were made about the rapid deterioration of the United States – but it turned out that the prophets of doom were too quick to write off its economy and the resilience of its people overall. In fact, the argument that the American empire is sinking and other forces are rising has been voiced time and again since the 1980s. For as long as I can remember, I have been hearing that the United States is done for, but in practice its influence has never been stronger.

In any event, if America’s hegemony is indeed on the wane, there’s no reason to regret it. A recasting of the international balance of forces is the main hope for substantial change in the way the world is being managed – far more than the victory of a particular candidate in the U.S. presidential election.

In the new cold war that is developing between China and America, there is no reason to come to attention obediently by the side of the latter nation. For years the media have been trying to scare us with terrifying scenarios of a global takeover by the frightening Chinese empire. Indeed, there are good reasons to be apprehensive about the domination of the Chinese political model – a centralist dictatorship that aims to maintain a tight grip on the lives of the country’s citizens. But that model could change, as political trends in China have in the past.

Berlin to Delhi

The unipolar global alignment is falling apart before our eyes. The alliance between the two sides of the Atlantic Ocean looks weaker than ever. But it’s possible to imagine other international alignments, ones that go beyond simply replacing one superpower with another superpower. One possibility is the G-Zero scenario – that of a world in which no state or group of states is strong enough to dictate global order. Another possibility is the disintegration of the geopolitical unit known as “the West,” and Europe’s integration into a new, Euro-Asian world order. After all, Berlin is closer to Delhi than it is to New York, and the same goes for Tel Aviv.

Those who believe in history and in the human spirit should also believe that humanity will learn how to get along without the American global cop. It is America that brought the world to its present state: unrestrained capitalism, environmental destruction, political deterioration and cultural dilution. Its continued hegemony means stagnation and gradual decline. In fact, there are few changes more interesting to conjure up the appearance of a post-American world. Asian trends are already conquering the world – from China’s Singles Day to television series about Thai gays. Every such development shows that we will not have to kowtow to Hollywood and Amazon for all time.

The notion that it’s easier to imagine the end of the world than the end of capitalism has already become a cliché. But before imagining either of those, it’s worth trying to imagine the world after America.

https://www.haaretz.com/us-news/.premiu ... -1.8968850?


I've been talking about the bold part for quite some time now. The international clique is almost done with the USA as the superpower. Pretty much anything of importance has been squeezed out of that place. The USA has served its purpose. The Stalinist wet dream, a Pan-Eurasian Kalergi Superstate, being ruled from Jerusalem, is what they really want.
#15106064
The US can't compete economically with China. To stay at the top, the US has to use military force. That is in nobody's interest. We are hard pressed fighting the pandemic and climate change. Having to cope, in addition, with WWIII or a nuclear holocaust will definitely doom humanity. Thus, a big power show-down has to be avoided at all costs.

Nobody wants a world under Chinese hegemony, and the Chinese simply don't have the means to achieve that hegemony either. If they were to try, they would face too much opposition.

Ideally, the EU should form the nucleus of a multi-polar rules-based world order. Neither China nor the US has the credential to serve that purpose. The age of empire has passed. To achieve a global empire by military force would be far too destructive. All countries without hope of creating their own empire (99% of countries) have an interest in such a multi-polar rules-based world order not dominated by any empire. We just need to provide a rules-based framework within which they can be safe because its members accept the concept of peaceful coexistence just like EU member do today.

Even the US is getting tired of defending its hegemony. Trump is the living proof of this. We can wait for the US to collapse or try to gradually ween Americans off their imperialist reflexes by offering them a happier future without the burden of empire.
#15106074
An aggressive totalitarian dictatorship with 1.5 billion people and an ever-expanding economy should make us all tremble in fear at what's to come. I don't see a good outcome out of this.

A lot of people hate America, and there's reason for sometimes hating their government, but the alternative is much uglier.
#15106144
We may have a sentimental attachment to liberal democracy, but that doesn't mean anything. In the end, it's the system that's best capable of addressing future problems that will win.

Is China or the US better at containing the virus? Is China or the US better at combating climate change? Is China or the US better at lifting hundreds of millions out of poverty? Is China or the US better at maintaining peace? ...

The US is clearly dysfunctional and has harmed democracy more than China ever could. The gods of consumer society sustaining Western individualism have been hollowed out. I doubt that China is capable of providing a better model for the future, but at least it is more efficient.

The West needs to renew itself if it is to survive. We need another Renaissance or pass the baton.
#15106153
Unthinking Majority wrote:An aggressive totalitarian dictatorship with 1.5 billion people and an ever-expanding economy should make us all tremble in fear at what's to come. I don't see a good outcome out of this.

A lot of people hate America, and there's reason for sometimes hating their government, but the alternative is much uglier.


For China to be a threat, they need to become an international society as a people and not just as the state. The problem as i see it, if that happens then those 1.5 billion people will become a serious threat to the CCP. People are not blind, especially if they can travel outside of their own country. Look at people like Gorbachov, he has traveled in the west and brought change to the USSR because he saw that the system in the USSR is enferior and is not functioning. Same goes for the Chinese system, its own people will eventually change it to mimic our system. While this seems far fetched right now, i do not see how that will not happen eventually since China is entering a point in their development where without that liberty and rule of law, the growth will simply slow down to a minimum while corruption will prosper. This story has happened so many times through history that it isn't even funny by now at how predictable that is. Yes, China will have a substantial economy anyways but ultimately that is irrelevant if the CCP will be preoccupied with putting its own people back inline instead of fixing its own problems. Most forget that China opened up relatively recently to the world. And by opened up, i mean it barely started opening up. I don't think that more than 5% of Chinese society has ever been outside of China. (i am not sure about the statistics so don't quote me on this)
#15107026
The choice isn't obvious for anyone on earth, no matter where they live, because the developmental models are extremely different. Not only is the USA a former colony of the world's most genocidal empire, but, according to Howard Brand, the West's economic system is extremely dated just like most of Europe's.

Howard Brand wrote:Xi Jinping in discussing the difference in the origin of the Chinese government and the Western governments said that the Western capitalist governments originated with the overthrow of feudalism by the business people (bourgeois) and are still primarily responsible to the business people whereas the Chinese Marxist government came into existence with the overthrow of feudalists, colonialists, and capitalists by the workers and peasants and so is responsible to the workers and peasants.


So while Western governments are STILL - after 300 years - serving the business community at everyone else's expense in the West, the Modern Chinese government that is in place was created to serve the vast majority of ordinary people living in China - a huge difference in scope that makes the Chinese system more attractive to perhaps 90% of the Earth's population.

Of course, with all the propaganda we're inundated with, most Westerners have never thought about the two systems in this way. But things can change rapidly during an economic depression.

Code Rood wrote:...being ruled from Jerusalem

Is this really anyone's dream who doesn't already live in Jerusalem? Because Abrahamic religion is what created many of the problems we are desperate to solve right now.
#15107125
JohnRawls wrote:People are not blind, especially if they can travel outside of their own country. Look at people like Gorbachov, he has traveled in the west and brought change to the USSR because he saw that the system in the USSR is enferior and is not functioning.

I agree that travel can be eye-opening, if you're open-minded enough.

Going to Cuba a few years ago... that was the first time I saw a functionning community in my adult life. This was an invaluable experience.

And while I was in Havana in December, I ran into two Chinese ladies - both students travelling abroad - and they asked me why I loved Cuba so much. I told them what I loved was how so many cultures and different people could all get along and work together as communities and as a nation with a social project.

If you stay in the USA, UK, France, Spain, Canada, Australia etc. all your life, you will not see this anywhere - except maybe on a few fictional TV series.
#15107132
QatzelOk wrote:I agree that travel can be eye-opening, if you're open-minded enough.

Going to Cuba a few years ago... that was the first time I saw a functionning community in my adult life. This was an invaluable experience.

And while I was in Havana in December, I ran into two Chinese ladies - both students travelling abroad - and they asked me why I loved Cuba so much. I told them what I loved was how so many cultures and different people could all get along and work together as communities and as a nation with a social project.

If you stay in the USA, UK, France, Spain, Canada, Australia etc. all your life, you will not see this anywhere - except maybe on a few fictional TV series.


Perhaps. Since Cubas society is a bit different and more closer to what we had pre internet and you like that so I would agree with you. Did you notice that the fronts of the buildings were more or less okay while the backsides were run down usually? And strange things like elevators not working and not being repaired?
#15107158
QatzelOk wrote:The Modern Chinese government that is in place was created to serve the vast majority of ordinary people living in China - a huge difference in scope that makes the Chinese system more attractive to perhaps 90% of the Earth's population.


Either this is a lie, or you are denouncing the majority of Hongkongers to the "flimsy 10%" and, implicitly, "deserve annihilation".
#15107230
Patrickov wrote:Either this is a lie, or you are denouncing the majority of Hongkongers to the "flimsy 10%" and, implicitly, "deserve annihilation".

I was paraphrasing Howard Brans when I compared the USA and Chinese development model.

And if you think ex-British-Empire Hong Kongers are suffering, you should research what the USA did to all its native people - including their five allies. That's the development model that you guys in Hong Kong were part of before. The one that kills off people all over the world to make a handful of people luxuriously decadent.

And the USA also uses it huge money piles to destroy other social models, giving humanity far fewer choices in the process.
#15107248
QatzelOk wrote:And if you think ex-British-Empire Hong Kongers are suffering, you should research what the USA did to all its native people - including their five allies. That's the development model that you guys in Hong Kong were part of before. The one that kills off people all over the world to make a handful of people luxuriously decadent.


Don't think I am blind to that (I had stated in another rebuttal that we were merely marginal cases compared with Palestinians and, say, Uighurs), but I am where I am, so the Chinese government and anybody supporting them are the bad guys to me, not the United States.

The decimation of native Americans and Australians was by a very large part due to people of that time had not enough knowledge of how epidemics kill. The only reason that China did not have such record was that they simply were not keen to voyage around the world to start with, but they were not any more lenient when dealing with ethnic groups around them, and especially intolerant to anybody who think differently.

Given your stance on modern development, I believe you would have a very hard time if you were born and grew in China, because they value development very much ("Development is the cardinal principle") and were quite cruel to whoever happen to be in their way.
#15107926
Patrickov wrote:The decimation of native Americans and Australians was by a very large part due to people of that time had not enough knowledge of how epidemics kill.

The First Nations of North America were ethnic-cleansed, genocided, etc. many decades after the European diseases had made their way through their populations. The Europeans WANTED them all dead. This wasn't an accident at all. This weekend, do some "research" and rent yourself a Cowboys and Indians movie, and count how many First Nations in the movie die of disease, and how many are shot to death by "the smiling good guys."

Perhaps Hong Kong could have become the supply center for Anglospheric soldiers genociding mainland China... if things had gone slightly differently during or after WW2. You loyal British assets in Hong Kong would surely have been handsomely paid for genociding people who are very similar to yourselves. Would you have been an eager participant in this kind of project yourself, Patrickov?
#15108124
QatzelOk wrote:The First Nations of North America were ethnic-cleansed, genocided, etc. many decades after the European diseases had made their way through their populations. The Europeans WANTED them all dead. This wasn't an accident at all. This weekend, do some "research" and rent yourself a Cowboys and Indians movie, and count how many First Nations in the movie die of disease, and how many are shot to death by "the smiling good guys."

Perhaps Hong Kong could have become the supply center for Anglospheric soldiers genociding mainland China... if things had gone slightly differently during or after WW2. You loyal British assets in Hong Kong would surely have been handsomely paid for genociding people who are very similar to yourselves. Would you have been an eager participant in this kind of project yourself, Patrickov?



The following article is enough to refute your argument:
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/New_Laws

If you have to think like this and want to brand me as a genocidal maniac, so be it. If it makes you happy, I would not only say "yes", but also suggest the target group be expanded to include you. (Disclaimer: I hadn't suggest genocide here because it's simply impractical and not solving the problem. I am simply calling for direct takeover of administration)

The likes of you are too blind to see the atrocities committed by the group you support that I find it time-wasting to even call you out on the mistakes of your way. On the other hand, I am fully aware of what the West had done, but I also find that the West had changed, even if it's not complete yet.

The Chinese government treats us, who are undoubtedly Chinese, worse than how the West treats you, who're not Westerners. Count your blessings.
#15108192
Rugoz wrote:People whine endlessly about the US, but it's still vastly preferable. For starters, the US doesn't put thousands of people on death row every year and millions into reeducation camps.


I mean, the U.S. is just running around for the last how many decades destroying country after country after country and the climate, torturing people all over the world including journalists, imprisoning children at home via ICE, having its security forces executing people of colour with impunity, imprisoning 25% of the world's prison population which it uses as what amounts to slave labour, deporting millions of fleeing refugees from countries they've destroyed, increasing the already huge divide between the rich and the poor and has a system of government that amounts to legalised bribery, while China is on its way of destroying poverty and developing poor countries. So yeah, China bad! America good! :lol:

Life in America is great for the average worker.


And in China.


#15108193
Rugoz wrote:People whine endlessly about the US, but it's still vastly preferable. For starters, the US doesn't put thousands of people on death row every year and millions into reeducation camps.

The USA puts a greater percent of its population in prison than any other dictatorship or democracy on Earth.

Moreover, East Asian countries under US protection, that is Taiwan, SK and Japan, work better than China by every metric.

Indonesia and the Phillipines are good examples of capitalist Asian countries that contrast negatively with China or Vietnam - two communist countries whose governments are sworn to helping the vast majority of their populations. This can be verified here.

http://www.informationclearinghouse.info/55358.htm
"Even the mainstream, right-wing British magazine, The Economist, could not overlook the great success in battling against Covid-19 by Communist states, such as the Indian Kerala and Vietnam...

I periodically return to Vietnam, one striking thing I keep noticing is that the country has no slums. Extreme misery is so common in brutal capitalist Indonesia, the Philippines, but also in Cambodia and Thailand. There is no misery in the Vietnamese cities, towns and countryside. That itself is an enormous success..."

https://dnews.com/opinion/his-view-asia ... d2d64.html



https://thediplomat.com/2020/04/the-sec ... e-success/

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