Breaking News China-US War?

Nilgiri

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@Nilgiri @Rooxbar interesting take by Niall Ferguson. What do you guys think? Will this containment policy work like the last time it did with USSR?

Parts I agree with, other parts are simplistic take given China's vast difference to the USSR.

Even if there was full transmission of Mao type leadership ideology post-Mao (i.e no economic reform arc like happened) and PRC evolved into some larger version of North Korea (though not as extreme, given its raw size).....there are things the PRC has set up within itself that prevents something like there being a wild swing from Brezhnev to Gorbachev.

While such an entity exists politically, it is never contained, it will always have some large enough notable impact. The USSR was never contained, nor is Russia in some absolute sense.

The USSR was unique (to say PRC then and now).... in that it packaged russian tsarist (and then bolshevik) expansionism into constituent republics (the SSRs, of which the USSR was the union of them) and had these fault lines baked in. FDR also pretty stupidly handed over a bunch on a platter to Stalin in the last few years of WW2 regarding Eastern Europe's political fate.

Simply saying it was a fiscal strain from over-centralisation and dysfunction (Moscow + GOSPLAN), that too the AFG war was what did it in, is very simplistic....I find these relative minor contributions compared to the larger inertia set in from the Tsarist times that the bolsheviks subsumed and that Gorbachev became unwilling to enforce (on a system that had grown accustomed to this and then essentially cascaded). People either package and prioritise their final identities with the larger nation for that nation's sustenance....or they have not and do not. Then it becomes a matter of how much you incentivize and/or coerce them....and how big of a % they are in the end and if there are ready made seamlines like the SSRs.

One can look at the new union treaty attempt (that ended up in the botched form of the CIS) in the early 1990s for example....it was the 3 baltic states and Armenia and Georgia where even the registered voters with the CPSU boycotted it.....unlike central asia, azerbaijan, belarus and even Ukraine. These are the tiers of these things you see when the old system cover is made defunct (its why a ton of Russians revile Gorbachev).

PRC took a different approach, mirroring a much more unitary state and with the Han majority % as well that backed it up (though the word homogeneous is over-used and simplistic). This is why its the people's republic of China....not a union of republics.

This needs a longer look into both Sun Yat Sen era and also the Qing empire (given the most dominant Qing emperors realised as Manchu minority and what had eventually happened with the Mongols before them....that each ethnic group had to be part of the larger Chinese people and nation officially and as much as possible in practice).

So its existence as cohesive entity is much more guaranteed, containment just becomes relative affair of definitions after that given its size.

It certainly has vast (mounting) challenges, it just saw 5 trillion in market cap wiped out in a few years, it has next to no long term liberal soft-power institutions (that the west relies on along with immigration from rest of world to put into concert in its own way a long time), it made bad investment choices into real estate (now coming under huge strain as well).....and there are the other things Ferguson and others more readily mention. Xi Jinping made a lot of things worse as well.

But its not the same country as USSR....and containment is a catchphrase. The West has its own set of challenges too.

With PRC, there are simply huge genies out of the bottle (that weren't the case with the USSR) and already impacted given the economic transition and capital accumulation on top of all of this (the political existence and raw size of population). PRC also took lessons from USSR case and continues to adapt/respond with its echelons in various human endeavours too.

West will certainly conduct and manage some containment policy...and the west has several things going for it (the island chain from Japan to Vietnam.....alliance with India, vast wealth stockpiles, huge soft power, institutional heft and so on)....but it wont be some drastic result like seen with USSR in 1980s. It will have some success and failure and China will also have some success and failure and I dont think either side will outlast another politically here in some complete way. There will just be longer term cycles that come into play given the sizes here.
 

Rooxbar

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@Nilgiri @Rooxbar interesting take by Niall Ferguson. What do you guys think? Will this containment policy work like the last time it did with USSR?
Interesting; I'm reading his book at the moment. I'm not a fan of the book. It's apparent that he likes simple models and likes to repeat conventional wisdom. The Kennan view of containment until problems get too large for USSR, as Nilgiri pointed out, is far from the only possible narrative but even given that framing, the same fault-lines don't exist for China. The USSR elite broke the social contract, of their own accord, and then there was no surprise that something would try to fill in that vacuum ideologically and given the fragmented nature of the Union inherently, the vacuum filled along those fault-lines starting with Baltic nationalisms. None of these things have parallels in China. But other problems exist; whether it is a gamble or a rational strategy to "contain" and let those problems grow requires collective effort of expert analysts.

The "pathologies of one party system" is not a thing, if the "one party" is not merely based on the charisma of a strong man, but it's organized like an all-encompassing social mobility ladder, which it seems to be in the case of the Chinese. Continuity of expertise should be guaranteed in statecraft to some extent for any system to function optimally and retain its institutional memory; and this extra-democratic "continuity of expertise" and institutional memory exists through various channels for the "two-party" system in U.S. as well. As an example, Victoria Nuland was chief of staff to deputy secretary of state during Clinton, national security adviser to Dick Cheney and then U.S. ambassador to NATO during Bush, and various other high level positions under Obama and Biden (why there is no mention of Trump is the same reason Neo-Cons don't like Trump; he threatened the institutional memory by offending the bureaucrats which led to a mass exodus, and his appointment of ideologues didn't help win them back either). So the problem is not with one party or two party or three party; the problem arises when mechanisms of retainment of institutional memory based on a meritocratic social mobility ladder become faulty. From where I'm looking from afar, they seem to be more faulty in U.S. than they are in China. But still U.S. is geographically in a very privileged position, is set up as an immigrant nation that can balance its demography much better than most states, has a much more robust alliance system and a whole host of other things going for it. So who knows.
 

contricusc

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But still U.S. is geographically in a very privileged position, is set up as an immigrant nation that can balance its demography much better than most states, has a much more robust alliance system and a whole host of other things going for it. So who knows.

The US also has the advantage of being the world’s biggest producer of oil, with an abundance of cheap natural gas as well, so from the perspective of energy independence, the US is in a privileged position.

As for the political system, the two-party systen in the US is superior to the one-party system in China because it allows for the debate of ideas and it gives the public a chance to shape the politics through voting. This means that the disconnect between the political elites and the people cannot grow as much as it can in a uni-party system, as the voters have the chance to reflect their frustrations with unpopular policies. The two-party system has institutional memory (continuity of expertise), but also has the elections that allow fresh ideas and newcomers to challenge the status quo and bend it in a direction that is more in line with the population wants.

The two party system is more flexible than the uni party system, so it is more resilient and can adapt to change easier.
 

Zafer

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It is claimed that China has the production capacity to produce 1000 cruise missiles per day.

@Nilgiri @TR_123456 @Zafer @Afif @OPTIMUS @Rodeo @Rooxbar
It is surely possible and probable in any size of cruise missiles but would be more probable for smaller cruise missiles. They can do such a capacity if they feel the urge to do so.

It is a lesson to learn for us too. We need more capacity provided by multiple makers and not just by one. I would say three or more makers should supply engines for cruise missiles.

These types of engines were considered for cars and motorcycles too in the past but fuel economy was poor for a car and they were noisy and were generating too much excess heat to cool off. But with advanced technology and an increasing interest by startups in this field we should make a variety of them in all sizes and capabilities to be used by from missiles to jetpacks and all kinds of flying vehicles.
 
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Rooxbar

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An embarrassment of riches:


And remember it's never about "free" trade. I'm a free trade guy in an international marginalist sense, but those who say they are free trade guys in government and mncs are never free trade guys. free trade when it benefits me, no free trade when it benefits thee.


P.S. Also after TikTok, they're coming for the U.S. consumer and its newfound love for Alibaba
 
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Ryder

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People are gonna be saying they are going after quantity.

We seen that Quality has not able to make Ukraine win the war.

If you cant do both Quality and Quantity you will basically lose the war. So many empires lost due to this mentality that Quality could win them the war we seen that with Ww1 as Germany did not have quantity to keep the war going despite their quality of a military compared to the French and the British.
 
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