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News What are Your Thoughts on the Rise of China?

  1. Jul 2, 2013 #1
    When we think about first world nations and world leaders in politics, ethics, economics, and science, we think of Western nations that are built on democracy, human rights, and freedom. But now we are facing a new situation where the prospective new world leader will spread its influence while standing on a foundation based on political authoritarianism/monarchism, coercive population control (forced abortions, forced sterilizations, one-child policy, state-sponsored eugenics), ethnic nationalism (racial exclusion for immigration and citizenship, complete rejection of multiculturalism, persecution of gays, etc.), a complete rejection of human rights (denial of religious freedom/gay rights/political expression, media censorship and criminalizing possession and viewing of Western television shows, criminalization of sexual self-determination/pornography, etc.), and political alliances with other evil nations such as Iran, North Korea, and Russia.

    What are your thoughts about the possibility of having your whole lives turned upside down by a realigning of world power based on ideologies you have your whole lives rejected?
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Jul 2, 2013
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  3. Jul 2, 2013 #2
    China might try to politically influence parts of Africa, I am not sure for what, but it is a possibility. China has America beat in sciences and patriotism lol. But I do think China is in for a change, a more "democratic" way of living for the people of China. Although, the west thinks of China as the bad guys the Chinese are actually pretty multicultural, well enough for them to send their children over here to learn. I have met Chinese people and befriended many of them. The people you should be afraid of is your own government, our own government, Europe and its government. Also, lots of the Chinese I have met are very intellectual, albeit they were a little bit apolitical they had strong belief in their country. So, I don't think we should call other nations evil just their culture is a bit different than ours. In addition, America wouldn't have any political rivals like North Korea if we would have won the Korean war, we didn't need nukes we needed peace negotiations and talks of political support, I bet that N. Korea is sitting on a gold mine of oil.
     
  4. Jul 2, 2013 #3
    I'm not sure how you square your comment about attaining a more democratic way of living with the people being apolitical. Also, multicultural isn't usually used to refer to the willingness to go be apart of another culture. Chinese people could hate the culture of the US but still send their children here for the higher education opportunities. Multiculturalism refers to the existence of multiple cultures coexisting in the same region. In that respect, I don't see how China could be ever be considered multicultural. I do agree with you about dealing with our own governments; prosperity and relatively long peacetime has made people belonging to Western nations complacent.

    In general, I've begun to feel that a case for Chinese takeover is usually overstated. Even if China were to become THE economic power I don't think they would also export their ideas about governance to the rest of the world.
     
    Last edited: Jul 2, 2013
  5. Jul 2, 2013 #4
    Most Westerners don't support extreme ethnic nationalism.

    Also, China's economy is completely based on intellectual property theft: stealing Western science and technology. Not something to be proud of.

    Most Western political commentators don't see economic success in China transforming into democracy: their views are that we should just accept the fact that China will always be a "monarchist" system.

    That is very touching; but I am talking about the government of China. People in China would love democracy and would love to vote for their way of life, but they have not had their violent democratic revolution as yet leading to democracy, as many other nations underwent.


    Fascinating. But I am talking about China's government, not whether individual Chinese people are intellectual.

    Yes: I meant that their government is evil, not the oppressed citizens themselves.

    So, are you looking forward to the sterilization of people China's government considers "inferior," forcing women to get abortions against their will, and imprisoning gay rights activists? Are you in favor of the Chinese government providing economic support to Iran, a nation that wants to destroy the West and wipe Israel off the face of the Earth? Are you in support of China's government eradicating the culture of the Tibetans? Do you support them telling people how many children they can have? Because you have just now defended all these things.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Jul 2, 2013
  6. Jul 2, 2013 #5
    Well, I mean you may be right about the multiculturalism part, but there is a large number of people there in china I am pretty sure they aren't all Atheist, like most communist nations. I mean what would you rather have, people forcing you into their beliefs, or your old style of belief systems.
    What the heck? Who support ethnic nationalism unless you are a Nazi... Oh yeah, like the west builds everything. You can't just take things and call them your own. lots of trade happened between the west and china(I mean back in ancient history, but still...). Well of course, political commentators, but who can look into the future? China could become a "democracy" over night... notice I am using quotes because it isn't a democracy,but like a republic "democracy" of sorts. What about the government is evil? the way the oppress their citizens? or is it the way they hide their corruptions? Because America does both, and we aren't even aware of it. Why would I be in favor of that, what, should I have a bias? Did you mind about America providing them support back in the 80's(I think it was), or was that Iraq... to fight off the Russians, and then only ~20 year later have them fight us back for their Jihad? I mean if it ends up happening to China, they just might not be as nice as Americans they have nukes and they don't like to be picked on. dude, I love those monks! Two children, it is a good number to replace each parent, but no I do not support that, because they can't have more children once their only son or daughter die, have you heard of Ai Wei Wei, a Chinese artist check him out, he did a piece on an earth quake that happened in 四川(Si Chuan) it is pretty sad. I don't like the actions of china, they cloak youtube, but I was watching a documentary and a person in the documentary said "This great fire wall of China is like a melting ice ream, and if each citizen of china takes a lick at it, this wall will be gone." or something like that, but if you think about what the "great fire wall of china" resembles, is China's unwillingness to allow the west in, and their culture out.
     
  7. Jul 2, 2013 #6
    I don't think all those things the Chinese government does will stand. Once more and more Chinese start getting educated and get out of poorness, things will change, like they did in European countries, and Japan. And European Western Nations aren't built on democracy, human rights and freedom. Almost all developed as monarchies, always engaging in wars through history; democracy, human rights and freedom came only in the last century.
    Look at the situation of 1st World War (1914): European monarchies and dictatorships and Imperial Japan going against each other, having battles on their colonies as well. Western history isn't as pretty as you're describing it. At that time, European countries had roughly the GDP/capita China had a few years ago, which means the relative wealth was similar:
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_regions_by_past_GDP_(PPP)_per_capita

    What worries me is the foreign debt from Europe and US that China owns, and the industry from the West shifting to China. But that's bad management by politicians here, the Chinese government is just taking the ride.
     
    Last edited: Jul 2, 2013
  8. Jul 2, 2013 #7
    I'm not sure if you're responding to me, Tosh, but I was speaking in the context of the past 50-60 years. To talk about people being complacent over longer periods of time is pointless because of the radical changes the world has seen as recent as the beginning of the 20th century.
     
  9. Jul 2, 2013 #8
    I was replying to the OP, I agree :smile:
     
  10. Jul 2, 2013 #9

    Mute

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    Well, given recent events, we may need to rethink some of those assumptions.

    The situation isn't really new. China has already been spreading its influence. So far, it doesn't seem to be trying to undermine democracy around the world. The Communist party seems to be primarily interested in maintaining its authoritarian regime as a means of self-preservation. Though it still has a long way to go in terms of its human rights record, China is much more open than it used to be, and I think that the Communist Party's grip on information and other sorts of freedoms the West enjoys will likely continue to weaken with time.

    Unless China adopts the West's policy of going around to other countries and "freeing" them, I doubt it would be any more world-shaking if China displaces the US as the world's superpower or if some other country did. The US has been the dominant superpower for decades; no matter who takes the #1 spot from them, adjusting will not be easy.

    That's because, based on your comments, you probably live in a Western society which likely has such large variations in ethnicity that you don't realize there are variations in ethnic groups you would consider a single category. There are 55 officially recognized minority groups in China - and they don't all have the same culture.

    And the US's economy takes advantage of the fact that it can have peasants in Chinese factories assemble all that Western technology for dirt cheap and sell them at a ridiculous profit. Is that something to be proud of?

    I don't think any Western political commentators foresaw the Berlin Wall coming down either, but it happened.

    Really? How do you know that? How do you know most or many of the Chinese aren't just fine with the ways things currently are? I've seen documentaries where Chinese citizens in rural villages get to vote for the mayor, yet still openly state that they think China is too big and diverse to elect the president. It seems that most of the Chinese who don't like the government are the ones who stand to make lots of money and don't want the government to get its hand on it. Most of the poorer citizens are possibly so used to their way of life that they don't even think the issue of not being able to elect the government is an issue. (That's not to say that they don't have issues with the government - for example, I'm sure owners of nail houses aren't too happy with the government).

    I don't think it's accurate to call all of the citizens of China oppressed. Some are. Some feel fine with the way things are. Just because you or I would feel oppressed under the Communist party's regime doesn't mean that those who do live under it are oppressed.

    At this point you are dangerously close (if not already guilty) of committing the logical fallacy of appeal to emotion, so I am going to have to ask you to start citing some form of reasonably impartial sources of information to back up your arguments. If you just started this thread to express your views about China, then you've done so and the thread can be closed. If you want to have an actual debate and discussion, then you cannot accuse people of supporting forced abortions because they take issue with you calling China, Iran or Russia evil when many, if not all, Western countries have also done a great many things that fly in the face of freedom and human rights.

    You are not just trying to paint a picture of China as a morally-void entity; you are at the same time trying to cast the West as a morally superior entity, and while there are a great many terrible things that I think the Chinese government has done, and while I very much enjoy and cherish the freedoms offered to me as a Westerner, the West has not always taken the moral high ground, and you cannot paint this picture of world politics using only black and white.

    At the risk of setting off debates about Krugman, I hear the foreign-held-debt issue is not as big as is believed.
     
    Last edited: Jul 2, 2013
  11. Jul 2, 2013 #10
    I don't understand how the rise of China would induce a complete revolution in our lives. Western Europe still hold on to their cultures despite having fallen from economic dominance in the 20th century. Economies cycle, and world powers come and go. China was already the world leader in economy and technology before the 15th-ish century.

    I would tend to agree with some of Tenshou's points. There is no black and white, and defending China does not mean that I support everything they do. Just because China may support some things you do not agree with, does not make them evil. How about the U.S.'s recent NSA PRISM scandal? They are not only violating the Constitution, one of the single most powerful documents governing the U.S. government, but they are also violating numerous international treaties by basically spying on internet activity of other countries. Additionally, as has been alluded to, the U.S. has been oppressing women's rights, minority rights, and gay rights now too long ago. In fact, these are fights that are still not over.

    This is a very strong comment that I would disagree with. You assume that everybody in the world shares your ideals, which is false. Speaking with a lot of Chinese, the mindset is often that although they do not support everything the government does (censorship, for example), it is seen as necessary for the good of society and the country. This stems from a culture deeply rooted in Confucianism, stressing the collective, or the society. This can be contrasted to the U.S.'s strong individualistic culture, stressing the good of each person.
    Additionally, this kind of mindset can be dangerous, as we have already made numerous mistakes in the Middle East, staying too long in countries convinced that we can build them a Democracy.

    Now, with this said, this is not to completely defend China's actions. I do think that they need to pay more attention to human rights, international intellectual property laws, and abuse of international market control. It just seems that a lot of your arguments are needless/false generalizations and fear-inducing statements. The U.S. is not perfect either, and China has definitely been improving significantly in the last few decades.

    Edit: Also agree with a lot of Mute's points.
     
  12. Jul 2, 2013 #11
    If China becomes more powerful than the West, I wonder what that would mean for the power of China's allies, such as Iran and Russia. Would this mean that Iran can then fulfill its plan to wipe out Israel with the backing of China? Does it mean that Russia can once again rebuilt its former USSR? Would it also mean China itself can invade all the islands of the South Multi-National Sea and capture foreign assets held by our allies like Japan and the Philippines?

    I am not worried about the debt issue though: who ever said we have to pay it back to China? Consider the money payment for all the technology China "borrowed" from us.
     
  13. Jul 2, 2013 #12
    NSA is a crime and terrorism fighting agency of the USA: a noble arm of the government. They play a very important task in screening electronic communications, such as internet postings, for individuals showing support for nations involved in human-rights abuses, espionage, and facilitating social, economic, and political harm to the USA and her allies. NSA is a monument to quintessential ethics and virtue.
     
  14. Jul 2, 2013 #13

    SteamKing

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    I don't know what plans China has for Africa, but I do know that China is very much active in Central America and the Caribbean. China is not only paying to widen the Panama Canal, but they have also signed an agreement with Nicaragua to build a second canal across that country.

    More troublesome is that it appears that China and Russia have entered a period of detente and may be moving towards a more amicable relationship. This is bad news for the US, since it complicates a whole host of foreign policy issues which must be dealt with in Europe and Asia.
     
  15. Jul 2, 2013 #14

    Astronuc

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    What goes up eventually comes down, and all great societies have collapsed from within.
     
  16. Jul 2, 2013 #15
    I think the China story is too often distorted, especially by the relativists.

    The reality of China's rise is that it's built on bubbles that are, relative to the size of their economy, far larger than anything we managed to concoct. It's banks are loaded with NPLs from wasteful infrastructure projects and from propping up loss inducing SOE's. The SOE problem in particular is a rather sticky because that's a critically important part of the regime's ability to hold onto power. The vast majority of managers, especially in the upper echelons are direct appointees of the Communist Party. The economy as it is structured now is a giant patronage machine for the Party to buy support. Not surprisingly, as a result of having so much government in the economy there's a tremendous amount of rent seeking. That makes critically important reforms very difficult because there's so many vested interests. How you know the current leadership is serious about reform is whether or not they conduct wholesale across the board privatization of all the SOEs. To make matters worse they're going to end up doing it at the worst time, as this wave of globalization comes to an end it's the great surplus countries that are among the hardest hit.

    The geopolitical situation in East Asia doesn't get nearly the attention it deserves. There has been an arms race going on for the past few years, with India, China and Vietnam all loading up. If that were not enough, as a direct result of China's bullying and increasingly aggressive foreign policy there has been something of an anti-China power bloc forming around Vietnam, the Philippines and Japan. This a hugely important development because they have a history of not getting along and was completely unthinkable just a few years ago. Indeed, China is following the same militaristic path Germany took during Wilhelm II's reign. This is a powder keg and it's only a matter of time before it blows.

    Have you read about China's Goldenshield project? PRISM is nothing compared to what they have. In China foreign websites run very slow, and many blocked at the whim of the Party officials. Individual users are tracked as the Public Security Bureau's do have their own Internet Surveillance Divisions. In Shenzhen they even have mascots. Meet JingJing and ChaCha:

    china_web_police_bej.jpg

    These fights are not over yes, but are you really going to say that we have made no progress at all? I'm constantly impressed by the relativists willingness to put down the efforts of the women's rights, gay rights and civil rights movement to satisfy some ridiculous need for equality.
     
  17. Jul 2, 2013 #16

    Mute

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    Many Americans disagree with you.

    Many Chinese might feel the same way about the Communist Party's control over China.

    One might claim those Chinese citizens have been brainwashed by propaganda into feeling that way, but how can you prove that you have not similarly been brainwashed?
     
  18. Jul 2, 2013 #17

    Does the NSA have textbooks and classes that talk about how great they are? Does the NSA have total control over the education system that only allows NSA friendly material to be published? No? Does the NSA have posters like this?

    e15-142.jpg


    (Approx. translation of poster: The Chinese Communist Party always represents the development requirements of advanced social productivity.)

    People who try and make this kind of false equivalency know not of what they're talking about. While it's not North Korea (anymore), the Party goes to great lengths to make itself appear as the only legitimate source of governance.
     
  19. Jul 2, 2013 #18

    Cthugha

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    Ehm....you are aware that the US is allied with Saudi Arabia - one of the most authoritarian regimes in the world, also not accepting the existence of Israel and even behind Iran in terms of the democracy index?

    It is quite naive to believe that alliances mean that every country will support each interest of each other ally completely. It is all about mutual interests and some compromises here and there.

    Also, especially after the invasion of Iraq, I would have expected Americans to become a bit more humble when it comes to the "good guy position" of the US. Over the course of the last 10 years, there have been times when the influence of China on the world has been considered as more positive than the influence of the US (http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/6421597.stm).

    Is this the reason, why they bugged the official offices of the European Union? Are the people from Sweden, Belgium, France, Germany and Luxembourg all terrorists from 'evil' countries?

    edit: Just to emphasize: I do not talk about occasionally listening in on phone calls , but about bugging official diplomatic offices of allies (at least considered that officially) systematically.
     
    Last edited: Jul 3, 2013
  20. Jul 3, 2013 #19

    Mute

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    American media does talk about how great the US is. American textbooks are accused of being or found to be inaccurate all the time, often portraying a very US-centric view of history and justification of the US's actions. The government does control which information comes out to the public about many of their intelligence and security activities, as recent events have shown. Not all propaganda takes the form of tacky posters (though the US has certainly had its fair share in the past.)

    Just because pro-US propaganda is not as extensive or intrusive as Chinese propaganda does not mean that it doesn't exist.
     
  21. Jul 3, 2013 #20

    WannabeNewton

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    +1 that was a beautiful post.
     
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