Photo above - "You might be a genius" if you can spot the human worker hidden n the photo above. You have 15 seconds . . .
Chinese Economists Disagree With Xi Jinping. But Xi Is Right. (forbes.com)
It's hard to name a publication more committed to capitalism, and survival of the economically fittest, than Forbes Magazine. Founded in 1917 by “BC” Forbes, who made a fortune and passed it on to his son Malcolm Forbes. (This us the family dynasty the HBO show "Succession" is parodying). Today the magazine is run by “Steve” (Malcolm Jr.) Forbes, the founder's grandson. Steve Forbes ran for president in 1996 and 2000, evidently because he thought the other GOP candidates weren't thin, rich, and white enough.
Forbes (magazine) says that America – and most of the world's leading experts – simply don't understand how economies work. Recessions are SUPPOSED to allow the failure of outmoded corporations, business models, and technologies. Trying to save the dead and dying of the corporate world . . . well, it may not be communism, but it's anti-capitalist. See link above. The author of this Xi-boosting op-ed piece is John Tamny. He's an icon of conservative book clubs, and senior advisor to all sorts of free market and investment organizations. Yeah – I never heard of him before either. But then again, I'm not paying out the wazoo for a Forbes subscription, nor am I a card-carrying member of conservative book clubs.
Here's the point Forbes magazine is making. China is NOT imploding economically and doesn't have “10 years before it fails completely”, like a bunch of western media is claiming. (I stand guilty of parroting this prediction at times). Forbes says that Chinese president Xi is refusing to bail out the Chinese stock market, banks which made risky bets, and overextended apartment builders because those guys SHOULD fail. “Creative destruction”. This is a term most of us are familiar with, even if we don't have degrees in business. A bunch of economists no longer agree that creative destruction is still a thing, however.
As I write this, a horde of winged White House monkeys has taken flight towards Detroit, to “fix” the UAW strike. I don't think either Ford or the UAW requested this. It sounds like the sort of thing some advisors in the Biden Administration dreamed up. Something to garner votes by appearing both pro-union AND pro-EV at the same time. There is inescapable tension between the two positions, because electric cars will inevitably require less labor, and last longer. This means fewer humans will be needed on the assembly line. Even if AI welding robots don't completely take over.
Whenever the government declares that it's found “a crisis”, and intervenes, you can be sure someone is hoping for a payoff by picking winners and losers. The Biden administration is apparently betting that both the UAW and Detroit can be winners, after a 40% wage hike, a 4 day workweek (for 5 days of pay), and battery electric vehicle “tax rebates” (federal subsidies) for at least another decade. This would be the same Team Biden who didn't understand that tripling Fed Funds rates would lead to a cascade of bank failures. Or that continued federal deficits would push America's national debt past the 100% debt to GDP level. This 100% ratio is commonly described as 'crisis level”, although there are no statistics to substantiate this. Japan is doing just fine at 250%, while Russia was a basket case at 18%, before they even invaded Ukraine.
Back to Xi. Chairman Xi's little green book philosophy: If you have overcapacity, you don't bail out the marginal players to keep them in business. Whether its automakers, banks, shopping malls, construction firms, or casinos during a pandemic, or ethanol corn growers or . . .
Well, you get the idea. What if we CAN'T save them all? What if there's not enough money on planet earth to bail out every worker, every company, every industry which is destined for extinction because things constantly evolve? Thank goodness God didn't reach down and bail out the Neanderthals when modern humans showed up, eh? But if the Neanderthal's were asked their opinion, they probably would have said “Save us, and smite those new guys with the big foreheads and their bows and arrows.”
Not too long ago, people were dismayed that Walmart was “killing Main Street”. Save Main Street, the left exhorted. Now Amazon is killing malls, and we're hearing the same thing – save mall jobs, running cash registers and tidying up the jeans display. Save the jobs of gas guzzling F150 assembly line workers. Save the jobs of tellers at failing banks that couldn't figure out how to do the basics. Remember when President Obama mused - on camera - that outlawing ATMs would create a lot of good, high paying jobs? Let's ask Michelle some questions like this, before she gains too much momentum as Biden's replacement in 2024, okay?
China doesn't get everything right. We had a spirited discussion here in Tampa-ville over the weekend. The topic was Xi's proposed hostile takeover of Taiwan. There are people who still don't see this invasion ever happening, even after watching the Ukraine war for 18 months. There are others who say fortress America should withdraw from everywhere else and protect itself. When you peel back the onion layers on this it sounds a lot like the same anti-globalist stuff we've been hearing for decades. This is coming from people with new iPhone 14s in their pockets, and who want affordable solar panels.
In 2023 America, we certainly can't afford to save every poorly run business, even if many ARE politically hooked up. And we don't want more homelessness, fentanyl addiction, or supply chain disruption. I can't tell you where to draw the line. But I'm pretty sure that the winged White House monkeys flying out to Detroit to "solve" the UAW strike haven't got a clue either.
I'm just sayin' . . .