The size of China’s displacement of the world balance is such that the world must find a new balance. An Australia-China Balance It is not possible to pretend that this is just another big player. This is the biggest player in the history of the world. – Lee Kwan Yew, founder of Singapore.
China is a better partner for Australia on both practical and ethical grounds. It is a far more important trading partner and its values are closer to ours than are American values.
First, the practical.
Fleets win battles but economies win wars, and China’s economy is bigger and more powerful than America’s. The Chinese economy will grow more in 2021 ($2.4 trillion PPP, twice Australia’s entire GDP) than the rest of the world combined. China leads the US in all fields of STEM research. Abroad, its diplomats dominate the UN and its trade envoys are the envy of the world, as the RCEP*. The BRI and the EU Investment Agreement demonstrate. China is the principal trading partner, investor, and technological enabler** of most of the world.
Its army–thirty per cent bigger than America’s–humiliated the US in 1951 and its missile force can vaporize every US city and foreign base in forty-five minutes. Its modern fleet is bigger and armed with more powerful, accurate missiles. The PLAN launches a new warship every month and its Type 055 cruiser is the most powerful surface combatant afloat.
But what about values?
It may surprise those who rely on our media to learn that we share a respect for a fair go, human rights, and democracy. Hear me out.
For 2200 years China has used competitive public examinations to select its smartest people–regardless of their background–to run the country and rural Chinese kids outscore all American children in STEM subjects. The practical impact of this policy? Unlike American workers, whose wages are unchanged since 1974, every Chinese has doubled her income every decade since 1980, and will redouble it by 2030. The result? There are more hungry children, drug addicts, suicides and executions, more homeless, poor, and imprisoned people in America than in China. That’s Chia’s idea of a fair go.
A closer look at human rights reveals more surprises: of the thirty rights enumerated in the UN Declaration, China leads the US 26-2-2.
Another fundamental right is having an obedient government that’s taking your country where you want it to. That’s the sign of real democracy and, obviously, China leads the US in democracy by a wide margin. Did you know that the Carter Center has overseen its elections for decades? Constitutionally, electively, popularly, procedurally, operationally, substantively, financially–China’s democracy comes out ahead. Though the Chinese want more democracy, they are in no rush, since things are going well right now.
In the US, say, political scientists, there is almost no functional democracy. “The central point that emerges from our research is that economic elites and organized groups representing business interests have substantial independent impacts on US government policy, while mass-based interest groups and average citizens have little or no independent influence.”
Why would Australians make an enemy of a well-behaved, wealthy, egalitarian, democratic neighbour? Who pays (on time) top price for everything we produce? Why would we be willing puppets of a military dictatorship (over half the budget goes to the military) and brutal police state (two million incarcerated without trial)? That makes endless trouble for the world, breaks every treaty it signs, is more destructive than the Mongols, and prints money to stay afloat?
A fact-based, real-life comparison between American overlordship and Chinese friendship suggests. That, once we observe, understand, and transcend our deep-seated racism, China is the better partner. It’s not even close.
A fall in the value of my pension, too, unfortunately!
For 15 years I warned my countrymen that we are not being told the truth about China. Far from being a malefactor perpetually on the edge of insurrection, failure, and collapse. It has thrived while we remained blind to its progress in every field.
Now it’s too late, though our media stubbornly persisting with the Western Official Narrative. But what now? What’s our endgame? What do we do when everyone finds out (as many more will in 2021) that everything we ‘know’ about China is either wrong or severely compromised.
Now, thanks to the Internet and despite The Narrative. We are recognizing that we are governed by incompetent, corrupt buffoons and the Chinese are not. Western governments have now lost government’s <i>only</i> essential asset: the trust of the people.
A disciple enquired about the essence of good government and Confucius replied, “The requisites of government are that there be a sufficiency of food, enough military equipment, and the confidence of the people in their ruler.”
The disciple asked: “If it were necessary to dispense with one of these, which of the three should be done without?”
Confucius answered: “The military equipment.”
“If it were necessary to dispense with one of the remaining two, which one should be foregone?”
Confucius replied, “Part with the food. Death has always been the lot of men; but if the people have no faith in their rulers, then the state cannot exist.” Confucius
When Western voters discover the truth about China they will reproach their governments, both for lying to them for seventy years and for doing nothing to meet the obvious challenge China represented.
That’s why the West is imposing increasingly tight, self-destructive censorship.
China is not. China is imposing censorship, of course, just as its Constitution requires, but censorship and propaganda can be more or less destructive and America’s is destructive because it polarizes citizens against each other at home and against the world at large, where threats abound.
China’s censorship is less destructive because they’ve had Chief Censors for 2200 years who have tried everything from flaying critics alive to letting people say whatever the hell they want to say. Their successes and failures are all archived and indexed.
The Chief Censor is usually a leading public intellectual, like America’s Noam Chomsky.
China’s current Chief Censor is a distinguished international legal scholar and author of influential books on geopolitics. He’s a TV star, a joke-telling Yale Law Professor, and a member of the six-man Steering Committee. He made his reputation by coaching China’s first world champion debating team (with a TV audience of 120 million people) so he knows how to look at both sides of a question.
On anything pertaining to public speech, he speaks for the government to the people and for the people to the government. He judges what public speech is fair, accurate, and useful and what’s not. His decisions are open to appeal and regularly questioned. His answers are fascinating.
He must be doing something right: under-25s say he interprets the code too strictly, the 25-55 crowd say he strikes ‘a pretty good balance, all things considered,’ and the grandparents are aghast at the immoral trash that he allows on the media. But no-one questions the need for censorship.
Thanks to him, Chinese media coverage of America is balanced and informative and, when the US makes progress in any field, everyone knows within 24 hours. Until the post-9/11 orgy of self-destruction, US governance was praised for its progressive achievements. China’s retirement program emulates many features of the US Social Security program, thanks to ex-Social Security folks consulting with Beijing.
Now China has passed the US in most measures. There’s little left to admire. And most of the non-Western world sees it that way, too. Now they want to emulate China’s success, not America’s failure.
And our media are trying to delay the moment of truth…why, exactly?
*The RCEP was based upon the premise that it would centre around an ASEAN framework. The treaty’s guiding principles assert that “negotiations for RCEP will recognize ASEAN Centrality.” RCEP is often inaccurately considered to be “China-led,” yet every ASEAN country voted to invite China. Clearly, they have no genuine problem with working alongside China.
** Huawei is a technological saviour of many countries: it will lift them out of the world of scant landlines into cutting edge communications much faster and cheaper than any competitor while providing 2% financing along with technology transfers. That’s why the US wants to destroy Huawei: it’s an emancipator.