Saturday, 10 March 2012

Here at the end of everything.

Being here in China and watching the news back home, I can't help but feel that I am in a privileged position for watching the end of the West. On the net I watch the growing pessimism from back home at the seemingly unstoppable rise of national debts and unemployment. While here in China I listen to the unswayable optimism and watch as new businesses and buildings rise up around me. I know it's not a certainty yet, but at the moment all the signs point to the end for the west.

So would it be such at terrible thing for west to end? Probably not. As a teacher I would give the West a passing grade for what he has achieved, but he's hardly been a Prefect. I mean his creativity and production has been quite good, but he could do with spending a bit more time on his understanding of environment consequences and he really needs to stop picking on the other kids.

For me the really worry is the alternative. If China was brining a new way of doing things to world then I would be more supportive of its rise, but if anything it seems like a step back. China has coupled the old communist autocracy with current rampant capitalism to create a highly productive country – economically speaking. And in the process has thrown away the things that were good about old communism (economic equality) and the current system (universal suffrage). If anything China today looks much more like industrial Britain, with a small, rich upper-class and a large poor working-class. True it is not the demon that many make it out to be, but it's far from being a paragon society or anything that the world should aspire to.   

There is still hope of course. China still has a whole host of problems that it needs to sort out before it can truly become dominant. Not least that as the West falls it will have to find alternative paradigms for its economy. Currently, the majority of Chinese revenue comes from manufacturing, the demand for which comes primarily from the West. Can it alter it's economy in time before the demand ends?

There is also the possibly that as China develops it will move from it's current system into something more appealing. Big changes have happened already and there are signs of possible improvements in the areas that cause me the most concern. Of course, only time will tell.   

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