Opinion – Biding Time Until China’s Outlook Clears – Chris Buckley- The New York Times – John Gelmini

Xi Jinping 习近平

Xi Jinping 习近平 (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

This is a piece of blatant misreporting, which seeks to show that people in China do not know where the country is headed and that Xi Jin Ping is disliked by the people and is trying to do contradictory things such as maintaining tight central control, inculcating Confucian values and avoiding a “hard landing”.

As Dr Alf knows, Xi Jin Ping has fired and dealt with 450,000 corrupt officials and is continuing to do so. The Western criticism of him is that when he does this he “only arrests his opponents” and by implication leaves his friends and supporters alone. The reality is that he is getting stuck into the next 450,000 and is speeding up not slowing down. By any standards, people cannot say he is trying to court popularity with measures like that because for each corrupt official he arrests there are children, family members, mistresses and other people no longer able to enjoy the largesse of the incarcerated corrupt official that are adversely affected. He has already announced the economic plan which is to slow down the smokestack, polluting industries and speed up the growth of selected high-tech firms whilst making smart acquisitions overseas.

In the space of time that David Cameron has taken to decide not to do anything about building a 3rd runway at Heathrow, Xi Jin Ping and his Government have built 55 new airports and are going to build 40 more this year. Presumably, these were not built by robots so people must have built them, something which creates jobs and the consumption needed to achieve a softer landing.

Investment continues overseas in engineering companies, mining companies and infrastructure and over Christmas I was shown photographs of the viaduct supports for a bullet train line China is building in Kenya within remote areas which will then be opened up to further economic development.

The “direction of desired travel” is laid out in the South China Morning Post in some detail and unlike Obama who is weak, ineffectual and incompetent, people know that love him or hate him Xi is a bulldozer of a man who gets things done one way or another.

The growth of the Chinese middle class is very much in evidence in this country when, as was the case last year, most of the Christmas trade in Oxford Street, the Bicester Shopping Village and similar places were down to Chinese tourists whose numbers are rapidly increasing to the point where Mandarin speaking staff are being employed here for the first time.

In contrast, America’s and Britain’s middle classes are shrinking, assisted by a higher than normal suicide rate, worse morbidity and in some cases attitudes of defeat and despair which are then channelled into “retail therapy” and unproductive activities by pensioners and the young.

The Chinese are not complacent and do not think that the world owes them a living. That and their work ethic, long-term view, planning and family values will take them into the future whereas we in the UK are still living in the past and America still needs to rediscover its “mojo” under the competent leadership and a cull of what the “Donald” rightly calls “very stupid people”.

John Gelmini

UK life expectancy set to hit 100 says ONS

Dalston's Ridley Road market, October 2005.

Dalston’s Ridley Road market, October 2005. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

For a fascinating insight into the UK’s life expectancy trends open this link and review ONS’s latest statistical projections.

It’s worth dwelling on a few of the implications.

Despite junk-food, increasing consumption of alcohol, rising obesity and limited excercise, people are expected to live an extra twenty years on average. So the gain must be attributable to more effective healthcare? Of course, the distribution of life expectancy in the future will probably follow similar variations to today, with poorer people more likely to die earlier. Also consider the changing demographics, with some sections of society growing faster. Underpinning all of this must be economic assumptions about financing an increasingly ageing population – who will pay the cost?

Another factor is the rise in mental illness and how this will be impacted by greater life expectancy. Unless there are medical breakthroughs, surely we shall see a trend towards a greater percentage of people with dementia?

Thoughts?

 

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