It is often said that the success of Chinese exports would be due to the very low cost of labor. This is a largely insubstantial assessment: labor costs represent only a small proportion of sales prices (5 to 10 percent on average), and do not compensate for the transportation costs to importing countries, even though Chinese wages tend to grow faster than those of competitors in the global South. China’s export success is largely due to the lower costs for inputs, such as energy and basic materials, provided by SOEs. Admittedly, Chinese wages are significantly lower than in the global North, but much higher than the alleged “miserable” wages.READ ON
LEO ZHAO—Other contradictions include those which result from the strict non-interference in the affairs of foreign states, which has characterised Chinese foreign policy for thousands of years, and the prioritising of larger international trade relationships over ideological conflicts. One example is unscrupulous business deals with right-wing or even fascist governments, such as Saudi Arabia or Israel. The “live and let live” ethic of this modus operandi even applies to ideological enemies: China also trades with the biggest terrorist organisation in the world, the USA, without even criticising its long list of illegal wars and heinous crimes against humanity.READ ON
PETER SYMONDS—The growing danger of a nuclear conflict between the US and China was the subject of an article in the latest edition of Foreign Affairs entitled “Beijing’s nuclear option: Why a US-Chinese war could spiral out of control.” Analyst Caitlin Talmadge concluded that any US conventional conflict would necessarily threaten China’s relatively small nuclear arsenal.
If that were the case, the Chinese military would be confronted with the choice of using its nuclear weapons or losing its ability to retaliate against a US nuclear attack. Talmadge dismissed the Pentagon’s routine assurances that there was no likelihood of a nuclear war between the US and China.READ ON
PAUL STREET—McCain flew 23 missions in which he participated in the bombing of Vietnamese civilians. He was likely responsible in a very hands-on way for the deaths of hundreds if not thousands of people. He would later unapologetically and publicly describe (as late as 2000) the Vietnamese forces who (doing their national, revolutionary and anti-imperial duty) captured and interrogated him as “Gooks.” The “Maverick” would kill far more people around the world indirectly, as a Congressman in the U.S. House and the U.S. Senate. The rabid imperialist McCain championed the vicious and arch-reactionary Islamist mujahedin in Afghanistan as part of the U.S. effort to collapse the Soviet Union.READ ON