Opinion – This is where China’s future will be decided. – Matt O’Brian – The Washington Post

President Nixon meets with China's Communist P...

President Nixon meets with China’s Communist Party Leader, Mao Tse-Tung, 02/29/1972 (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

This insightful article by Matt O’Brian, published in the Washington Post, describes the plight of one region of China, which he claims is a window into what’s next for the country.

Source: This is where China’s future will be decided. – The Washington Post

This is a good article but it contains too much bias. The bias comes from an American viewpoint of the world. There are some excellent observations but the analysis seems to be written with the conclusion pre-determined – this for me is bias.

I am privileged to have visited much of China and the economic miracle has certainly highlighted leaders and laggards. There are the super-wealthy with privileged connections and there are the masses, often with parents and grand-parents to support. But it’s necessary to take a Chinese perspective to understand these events, rather than an American perspective or that of a privileged Chinese living in America.

For me a longitudinal analysis (looking at history over time) perhaps provides a more meaningful perspective. Remember that in the 1950s under Mao, many millions died of famine. China is adjusting to a new growth trajectory, giving consumers more power.

For me, this article seems to target privileged Americans and is written to make them feel that perhaps China will not take over from the US in terms of economic power?

Another area of bias is to focus on one of China’s poorest cities. It is similar to trying to project the future from Detroit’s rust-bowl. What’s wrong with focusing on the millions of people who visit Nanjing Road in Shanghai?

Perhaps, I’m being too harsh on American journalist, Matt O’Brian?


One response

  1. Matt O’ Brian should look in his own backyard more and in mine before posting nonsense.

    China’s future depends upon the fundamentals of its own economy and the investments that it is making around the world.

    In America, businesses are being bought by the Chinese, the same thing is happening in the UK, including the area of Hertfordshire where I live, Northern Ireland, Australasia and, of course, in other parts of Asia and the African subcontinent.

    Some of this is via direct acquisition, but a lot of it is via buying and then gradually increasing shareholdings until a tipping point is reached.

    The companies they buy are not what he would call “mom and pop” enterprises but are instead major enterprises of strategic importance, such as Manganese Bronze who make the iconic London black cabs, Wessex Water, the infrastructure company which controls the operations of the London underground and prime real estate in London plus land without planning permission all around our major cities including greenbelt areas that we will have to build on in the next 20 years.

    When I have pointed this out I am told that the Chinese concerned are from Malaysia or Singapore and not from the mainland but this is simply a way of concealing the full extent of China’s economic leverage even in places that are outwardly separate sovereign nations.

    O’Brian should visit Cambridge, where the largest number of students are Chinese and consider the intellectual capability they represent. They are going to be the leaders of tomorrow’s China and the people our leaders will have to deal with and they outnumber their opposite numbers in America, Europe,the UK and Australasia by a very wide margin.

    Wealth is measured not just in gold, silver and factory output but also in the intellectual capital. They represent the future of China, not the city that O’Brian and his wife visited.

    Whilst here they learn English, how Westerners think and complete their studies.

    In Africa and Australia they buy mining companies, water rights, and land and in Cambodia and South America they buy land on which to grow food and grow it. They do this because they are preparing for global cooling at a time when we are rendering our Western businesses uncompetitive with carbon taxes and other measures to stop “Climate Change”.

    O ‘Brian and his ice cream eating wife presumably have not noticed the emergence of China Merchants Group and 2 other similar companies being groomed by Price Waterhouse Coopers. These will become the three largest insurance companies in the world, eclipsing the top 15 which are currently Japanese and further eclipsing the old top 5 which used to be American until the 1990s.

    O’ Brian and a lot of Westerners underestimate the Chinese but in amongst the bombast bellowed out by Donald Trump is one important nugget of truth,”The Chinese are eating our lunch” and should I live long enough to see it, will employ many of O’Brian’s countrymen plus many of mine.

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