It is strange how suddenly a skeptical Wall Street, CEOs, and even university and think-tank policy analysts are now jumping on the once-taboo Trump bandwagon on China: that if something is not done to stop China’s planned trajectory to global hegemony, based on its repudiation of the entire post-war trade and commercial order, then it will soon be too late. In a wider sense, at some point on a variety of fronts, Americans got fed up with perceived lopsidedness, and their ensuing exasperation started to change status-quo thinking and policy — whether China’s flagrant cheating, the recent illustration, via the “caravan,” of rampant hypocrisies about illegal immigration, or weariness with the asymmetries with the Islamic world.
China in its planned trajectory to world global supremacy makes two assumptions about the United States:
- that China can weld government-run market capitalism to autocratic government to improve on supposedly chaotic Western democratic and republican government and indulgent human rights;
- that the Western world will continue to excuse Chinese violations of global commercial and trade norms, on their misplaced theories either that the more successful the Chinese become, the more they will evolve to a democratic and transparent society and join the Western liberal community and follow its post-war international norms, or that there is nothing the West can do about a fated Chinese supremacy.
As to Chinese trust that their brand of government-managed capitalism is superior, in the short term, it is true that authoritarian governments, mostly in wartime, occasionally can achieve temporary spectacular results through partnering with capitalists.
But in the longer run, managed capitalism proves far less flexible and ultimately less productive than free markets that are moderately regulated by elected governments rather than heavily controlled by authoritarians or socialists.