Mean, sick, and poor is no way to go through life, son.

China will own us in a few decades

http://news.independent.co.uk/world/americas/article358568.ece

Damn.  Mandarin, or Cantonese?
Permalink Send private email sharkfish 
April 19th, 2006 12:31pm
Mandarin.
Permalink Peter 
April 19th, 2006 12:43pm
Well, really, if Economics is based on the power of production, and all things being equal Production is based on the labor of the people, then yes, the more people you have, the more production you can have, and the more powerful your Economy can be.

And we're helping them enormously by borrowing back their Yuan/Dollars, which we promptly use to buy more of their production.

Now, currently all things are NOT equal, and American Labor (through automation) is some of the most productive and high-quality on the planet.  But surely, it's only a matter of time for things to equalize.

Having said that, I recently heard the head of U.S. Steel give a speech, and he pointed out that unless labor is two or three times cheaper overseas, it's STILL affordable to produce steel here, in the U.S..  The cost of raw materials and transportation is such that any labor savings can be wiped out.
Permalink AllanL5 
April 19th, 2006 12:44pm
way to predict what's already come to pass...
Permalink Send private email John Haren 
April 19th, 2006 12:48pm
What a fucking joke.

And if my daughter's growth rates continue, in ten years she'll be 12 feet tall and weigh 2300 pounds.
Permalink awesomer-n-hell 
April 19th, 2006 12:59pm
and here we have the chinese wondering if india will outrun them though india is worse off today
http://www.chinadaily.com.cn/english/doc/2004-03/14/content_314832.htm

newspapers need sensational headlines. there are other better reasons to learn mandarin
Permalink ShyK 
April 19th, 2006 1:09pm
Actually, I think India's economy is more robust, and more likely to outpace the US. China's is too centralized and too brittle - I reckon they're in for a crash.
Permalink Send private email كولم 
April 19th, 2006 1:10pm
But China has better universities than India...
Permalink Rick Tsang 
April 19th, 2006 1:20pm
Pakistan has better universites than India too.
Permalink Send private email كولم 
April 19th, 2006 1:22pm
>Pakistan has better universites than India too.

which ones?
Permalink ShyK 
April 19th, 2006 1:27pm
Can't remember. I just remember that they poured massive amounts of money into Universities and it did jack shit for their economy. Primary schools is where it's at.
Permalink Send private email كولم 
April 19th, 2006 1:30pm
oh, you mean Pakistan has better FUNDED universites than India .
Permalink ShyK 
April 19th, 2006 1:33pm
Headlines in 2015 - "China faces massive labor shortages as one-child policy has evicerated demographics."
Permalink Bruno Di Pumadoro 
April 19th, 2006 1:39pm
"they poured massive amounts of money into Universities"
Yeah, the International School of Burqua Design.

Har har har to your backward, medieval, misogonyst bullshit religion.
Permalink Send private email John Haren 
April 19th, 2006 1:46pm
Okaaay
Permalink Send private email كولم 
April 19th, 2006 1:52pm
Squiggle,
you forgot :: backs away slowly ::
Permalink Send private email John Haren 
April 19th, 2006 1:59pm
Allahu Akbar!!
Permalink Send private email كولم 
April 19th, 2006 2:13pm
Akbar-n' Jeff!
Permalink Send private email John Haren 
April 19th, 2006 2:16pm
"China ... is a proud country which likes to remind others of its cultural achievements over thousands of years."

Wow. That's so 19th century :)

We are now being proud of defeating the Japanese, building the nuclear bomb and sending astronauts to space after Americans and Russians :)

And killing university students ...
Permalink Rick Tsang 
April 19th, 2006 2:23pm
>And killing university students ...
the us gov did not seem to think that that was a problem

http://www.gwu.edu/~nsarchiv/NSAEBB/NSAEBB47/
Permalink ShyK 
April 19th, 2006 2:45pm
guess the us is proud of kent state but not of what happened there
http://www.spectacle.org/595/kent.html
Permalink ShyK 
April 19th, 2006 2:53pm
if China and Japan decided to start dumping the dollar today, it'd be worthless by the end of the week.

(The reverse is not true.)

The only reason they aren't doing it is because they don't want to own multiple billions more worthless dollars.

In other words - it's already a fact.
Permalink $-- 
April 19th, 2006 4:28pm
Then both lost a market of 3 million people.
Permalink Rick Tsang 
April 19th, 2006 4:31pm
I mean billion :)
Permalink Rick Tsang 
April 19th, 2006 4:31pm
whatever. They are not doing in a hurry because of all the problems it would cause. But the big investment people in the Far East are pretty worried about the state of the dollar, and will protect themselves first.

When you owe so much to someone else that they can basically call you in and fuck you over any time they want, it's a fair description to say "they own you".

In history, situations like this have usually meant trouble for the one with the debt. But maybe the US is just different and special, who knows ...
Permalink $-- 
April 19th, 2006 4:57pm
well, how are they going to collect?  in principle, the US could just say, 'eh, all debts are cancelled.'  I mean, are they really gonna come over and shake us down?
Permalink Send private email John Haren 
April 19th, 2006 5:00pm
Yup, as soon as the economies of Germany, Japan, and China have recovered enough so they DON'T want to continue investing in U.S. T-Bills, we're screwed.

Well, "screwed" is a little harsh.  We're in for some double-digit inflation, anyway.  Which the gas-prices may just do for us by themselves.

And I heard the new head of the Federal Reserve Board say he's NOT going to continue raising interest rates.  Sigh.  Control of Inflation has been the Fed's guiding principle since the days following Jimmy Carter.  Not no more.

Oh, by the way.  If the U.S. DOES start "printing money" (inflation), that too will devalue the investements Germany, Japan and China have already made.  This may discourage them from continuing to buy T-Bills.
Permalink AllanL5 
April 19th, 2006 5:01pm
http://www.gold-eagle.com/editorials_05/conrad052105.html

It's not a questin of collecting. It's a question of dumping the holdings they possess, in addition to reducing or stopping dollar borrowing (which they've also done to some extent).

If they would really dump on teh dollar, your economy would like kind of like Argentina's.
Permalink $-- 
April 19th, 2006 5:05pm
And John, one of the reasons they're loaning us the money in the first place is that the U.S. has NEVER said "all debts are canceled".

Should they say that, the world's economy would fall.  All those investements from Germany, China, and Japan would become worthless overnight.  For that matter, more Americans hold T-bills (still) than any foreign nation.  Those "retirement accounts" would become worthless too.

Nope, inflating the dollar (so we pay back less than we borrowed) is the classic "get out of jail free" approach.  But it must be done carefully, gradually, and gently if it is not going to destabilize the world economy.
Permalink AllanL5 
April 19th, 2006 5:05pm
The big risk is probably that the Euro could be seen as more stable than the Dollar.  Should that happen, America could not pay back loans in newly printed dollars.
Permalink AllanL5 
April 19th, 2006 5:07pm
why do you hate america?
Permalink Send private email John Haren 
April 19th, 2006 5:08pm
<< And I heard the new head of the Federal Reserve Board say he's NOT going to continue raising interest rates.  >>

One way (probably the best way) to attract foreign investment (by which I mean buying treasury notes), is to offer a higher rate of return than they can get at home.

So saying that you don't plan on raising rates just means that foreign bankers & investors will be keeping an eye out for higher returns at home or elsewhere, rather than automatically sending it to us.  :-)


One of the sayings making the rounds in the 80's when Japan was perceived as an economic superpower and was buying everything in sight, was: "So what.  They have lots of little green pieces of paper, and we have some really excellent VCRs and fuel-efficient cars!"
Permalink xampl 
April 19th, 2006 5:08pm
http://newsrss.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/business/4875606.stm

The whole thing is built on faith. Faith in the dollar is what makes it fly. When the faith crumbles, it will too. European economies will obviously suffer too in that event. That doesn't mean it won't or can't happen. The dollar has been mighty, no question of it. But the faith in it is definitely decreasing, and it's hard to see what is going to reverse that trend right now.
Permalink $-- 
April 19th, 2006 5:11pm
I love America.  I think we're one of the greatest powers on the face of the Earth.  I think our culture has the ability to provide an economic engine that will raise the standard of living of the world.

I also think that the current administration's policies are so short-sighted, and so full of unintended consequences, that we are squandering our position of greatness in order to have lower taxes and attack Iraq.  And those taxes are trivially lower -- raise all taxes 5%, and the deficit would be taken care of.

I agree that these policies are providing a window of opportunity for China to displace us.  I'm not denigrating America when I say that.  I'm denigrating the policies that allow that.  I'm not even denigrating Republicans when I say that.  Most Republicans tend to be MUCH more fiscally responsible than the current adminstration.
Permalink AllanL5 
April 19th, 2006 5:25pm
I don't love everything about America, but I don't hate it either. For sure, I'd rather deal with the US than China. But I don't see how this affects the argument.
Permalink $-- 
April 19th, 2006 5:29pm
Ad hominem attack.  And no, it doesn't move the debate forward.
Permalink AllanL5 
April 19th, 2006 5:36pm
Oh for Chist's sake people.
I was fucking with you.  From the beginning.  Like I give a shit about who loves or hates America, or who owns the place for that matter.  Jeeze.
Permalink Send private email John Haren 
April 19th, 2006 5:44pm
Sure, sure.  Don't take US too seriously either.  Except that part about loving America.

I do have a regrettable tendency to take certain things too seriously.  Sorry about that.

It's only a Forum Thread, after all...
Permalink AllanL5 
April 19th, 2006 5:46pm
Yeah. I guess he was being dry. I also figure that most people know this stuff, just don't want to admit the truth. I do sincerely hope that the US are able to stabilise things and avoid the general downward slide. But when you look at the big empires of history, they usually got into trouble when they wanted to consume more than they produced, and that's where the US is now.

On the other hand, if you take the obvious comparison, with the Roman Empire, that lasted more or less 500 years from the time when decline started (which seems to be about 1990 for the US). A whole lot of shit happened along the way though.
Permalink $-- 
April 19th, 2006 5:46pm
trouble is, JH, that there are way too many people out there who'd say that crap in all seriousness. Kind of hard to see the grin on your face from here ;-)
Permalink $-- 
April 19th, 2006 5:48pm
Yes... there's the Dutch, and the Spanish, and the British empires.  None of those countries fell into a 'dark age', but lost their pre-eminence nonetheless...

Frankly, 'America' is far too abstruse a term for me to put much of anything on it emotionally.  There's a handful of people in America I love.  There's a city or two that I think favorably about, but that's about as big as it gets.  'Lessin' you're talking about the gummint... in which case I'd like to see every high-level member of the Bush administration, past and present, convicted of the war crimes they are guilty of.  And hung.  Upside-down.  From a lamp-post.  And have their throats slit.

Huh, did I go off-topic.  Whatever.
Permalink Send private email John Haren 
April 19th, 2006 5:51pm
Heh, I'd assumed that my history of irreverent posts here had made a bigger impact... <sniff>
Permalink Send private email John Haren 
April 19th, 2006 5:53pm
why do you hate the Dutch? and the British? (not gonna ask about the French ... ;)
Permalink $-- 
April 19th, 2006 5:55pm
I love the French.  If by 'french' you mean cheese.  And cigs.  And Audrey Tatou.  mmmmm.
Permalink Send private email John Haren 
April 19th, 2006 5:57pm
I'm starting to doubt that you're a real American at all. Prolly one of those east coast faggoty liberal types ...
Permalink $-- 
April 19th, 2006 5:59pm
Sorry, west coast faggoty liberal type.
Permalink Send private email John Haren 
April 19th, 2006 6:00pm
Goddamn hippies.
Permalink Send private email كولم 
April 19th, 2006 6:05pm
The bit at the end should cheer you all up:

http://www.boris-johnson.com/archives/2006/04/china.php
Permalink Send private email a cynic writes... 
April 20th, 2006 7:31am
>well, how are they going to collect?  in principle, the US could just say, 'eh, all debts are cancelled.'

Not quite.
"Section 4. The validity of the public debt of the United States, authorized by law, including debts incurred for payment of pensions and bounties for services in suppressing insurrection or rebellion, shall not be questioned."
http://www.law.cornell.edu/constitution/constitution.amendmentxiv.html

That is where the "faith and credit" comes from. Defaulting on public debt, which was authorized by law, is unconstitutional.
Permalink Peter 
April 20th, 2006 9:03am
Since when has being unconstitutional worried the current government?
Permalink Send private email Mat Hall 
April 20th, 2006 9:05am
Funny, I read that as "no whinging that the government's living on tick" rather than "the government can't welch".
Permalink Send private email a cynic writes... 
April 20th, 2006 9:08am

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