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Thesis & Antithesis

A critical perspective on energy, international politics & current affairs

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Location: Washington, D.C.

greekdefaultwatch@gmail.com Natural gas consultant by day, blogger on the Greek economy by night. Trained as an economist and political scientist. I believe in common sense and in data, and my aim is to offer insight written in language that is clear and convincing.

05 March 2006

Ready for China?

Sebastian Mallaby has an excellent article in the Washington Post on the growing tendency to use China as a scapegoat for the economic ills which are afflicting this country. I am reminded of this article by David Lampton in the winter issue of The National Interest which made the sensible observation that while America has tried to integrate China into the web of rules that make up globalization, it will become increasingly necessary for America to make its own adjustments to the new world that China’s rise is creating.

In meeting this adjustment, the furor is Washington does not bode well, especially given how hysterical Americans have become while China is still extremely poor on a per-capita basis (by which I mean: imagine how much more it can grow). Optimists like to point out that America went through the same phase with Japan in the 1980s. But I draw little comfort from that fact—the anger towards Japan subsided because the cold war ended (producing an excessive euphoria) and Japan went into a decade-long recession.

I am afraid the China-bashing is gaining its own momentum and this cannot be good for anyone.

Sebastian Mallaby, “Trade And the China Card,” Washington Post, 6 Mar 06 (link); David M. Lampton, “Paradigm Lost,” The National Interest, Winter 2005/06 (link)



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