As I was preparing for Super Bowl, I was distracted by an April 2021 Hoover Institution “Uncommon Knowledge” discussion between Peter Robinson and former security advisors H.R. McMaster and Matt Pottinger, who served under Donald Trump. I add my viewpoints to the discussion here.
China’s flexing of its muscle with Hong Kong, Taiwan, and the South China Sea concerns every nation worldwide, cherishing increased sovereignty. Militarily, China has stepped up its game, even though its investment pace is not even one-third of the United States.
The U.S. remains the world’s superpower, not sheerly because of its investment pace but because of the evolution of its advanced technology. A U.S. aircraft carrier is far more superior than a Chinese aircraft carrier. They are both called and counted the same by lazy interpreters, but their capabilities are very different. Not everything that can be counted can be counted on. It would take China another thirty years to catch up to the United States, regardless of investment pace.
The Chinese People
The danger China poses short-term is not militarily. The weight behind its long-term political and economic objectives directly affecting the lives of 1.3 billion of its people, plus its worldwide investment land-grab, is daunting. As I covered years ago, the lack of freedom of the Chinese people will prevent it from producing outliers that challenge and reinvent the establishment.
The way China governs with a government filled with old and stubborn stuges will make it hard to reinvent. You can only consistently renew a country when you allow for the messy controversy at the edge of the human fractal, yearning to burst out. The more the Chinese people lift themselves out of poverty, the more they turn against their government or want to leave. Who will stay is akin to an abusive relationship; those who cannot leave, and Stockholm syndrome victims.
Upside And Downside
An important reason why China poses more of a threat to worldwide affairs is not China’s upside but the crumbling state of America, our downside.
We have failed to reinvent ourselves and have been unable to inspire the world with new rigors of excellence we first and successfully apply to ourselves. Our democracy is a farce. Our flawed and outdated precepts, ideologies, systems, and outcomes turn the renewal of America subprime. For some 240 years, we have deployed laissez-faire constructs promoting damaging vile-maxims of selfish interests abusing our collective interest. We have deployed a fanfare of technology innovation as the backdoor to nation-state sovereignty and security, including our own.
Nature’s entropy requires humans to do more with less, quite the opposite of the hollow dream of sustainability. One hundred years after Einstein discovered the universe and our planet revolve around general relativity, none of our constructs deploy the principles of relativity.
Capitalism, socialism, communism, and the weather are not systems but symptoms. They are intersecting consequences from causes left undefined. We made the mistake of expecting reliable outcomes from systems that are not, and we made the mistake of relying on elective morals rather than subjugating to the unquestionable rule of nature. Solipsism, to think man rules nature, rather than nature ruling us, will do us in.
Neither the American nor the Chinese government win any prizes for developing the renewable excellence of its people. China’s former one-child policy leaves it with an aging and declining population. America’s laissez-faire constructs are the source of our growing incompatibility with nature. The American and Chinese people survive and thrive not because but despite who governs them.
Danger All Around
The government’s job is to protect and promote the excellence and renewal of human adaptability to nature’s entropy. A much higher order normalization than both governments deploy today. Neither government has identified or implemented a plausible theory to address the human needs to perform at their best. Like FIFA is the governing body responsible for formulating and maintaining the theory of soccer, it is up to the players to deliver a game worth playing.
Out of their league, the governments of both countries, not their people, are dangerous. In different ways, they each deploy constructs decoupled from a human theory aligned with nature’s first principles. Who does what to whom and why in the arena of solipsism are the mind-numbing convulsions from the catacombs of hearsay.
The “battle” between America and China ought to be about which government traces to rule of nature better to improve human adaptability to nature’s entropy. In America, the people’s voice is not silenced. We can speak our minds without fear of retribution. And therefore, regardless of our present imperfections, we can reinvent ourselves against the backdrop of new and higher normalizations of truth we may at some point recognize.
China is dangerous in the way any totalitarian regime is dangerous and doomed. It is doomed in the way a totalitarian monism of absolutism is incompatible with the innate relativity of plurality of human ingenuity and capacity.
I am proud to live in a country that is not perfect but at least, with more capable hands on deck, strives to be.