Me old china plate

Two stories, separate but thematically linked. The first about Chinese foreign policy starts with this.

Donald Trump’s former chief strategist Steve Bannon has warned that Australia will become “a tributary state” to China unless the Morrison government joins the US in forcefully challenging Chinese hegemony in the region.

And then this: on infrastructure spending in Victoria.

Premier Daniel Andrews has made a big deal out of talking up the Australian content in Victoria’s huge $45 billion investment in infrastructure projects.

Local content should be a priority and, indeed, the government needs to keep construction unions inside the tent to contain costs and keep industrial peace.

Mr Andrews had pledged a minimum 92 per cent of Australian steel would be used in the $6.7 billion West Gate Tunnel project.

But as revealed Thursday by our state political editor Matt Johnston, contractors for the project have ordered a 33,000-tonne shipment of steel from the Chinese government-owned firm ZPMC.

There are serious questions about what agreements were touted by Mr Andrews to foreign investors during his trip to China last month. Mr Andrews, the only Premier to have signed on to China’s controversial Belt and Road Initiative, has previously said he would work to attract Chinese investment in Victoria’s infrastructure program.

No doubt imported Chinese steel would be a lot cheaper than Australian steel. But the decision may yet cost Mr Andrews much more in union fury and public faith.

The title, btw, is a bit of rhyming slang I learned when I first reached these shores those many years ago. Seems quite appropriate in the present context. And while I’m on it, if one is interested in free trade, this might be of interest: How does China cheat on trade? Let us count the ways.

China cheats by protecting its home market from American imports with high tariffs, tricky non-tariff barriers, and costly, constantly changing regulations.

China cheats by subsidizing the exports of government-owned “national champions” to crush its free market competitors and dominate global markets.

China cheats by preying on weak counties, locking up their natural resources with “debt traps” in an obvious effort to gain a global stranglehold on key resources like bauxite, copper, nickel, and rare earths. These monopolies are not only being used to fuel China’s industrial machine, but to punish those countries who would oppose its predatory policies.

China cheats by subsidizing manufacturing with cheap loans and cheap energy, and also by turning a blind eye to environment, health and safety standards. Because of its cheating, it already dominates industries ranging from ship production and refrigerators, to color TV sets, air conditioners, and computers.

Above all, China cheats by stealing key technologies and intellectual property from the United States and other countries. These activities range from cyberespionage and forced technology transfer down to massive open-source collection and plain-old physical theft.

Economics is and has always been a subset of politics. No economics text can ever tell you what ought to be done, only what the consequences of different decisions might turn out to be. And a modern text most of the time doesn’t even do that.

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74 Responses to Me old china plate

  1. Fisky

    No no. China is the international champion of “free trade”!

  2. Rossini

    Dan the man!!!!!!!!!!
    Let’s not tell any voter what we gave away by signing the belt and road deal!

  3. John Smith101

    Mr Andrews, the only Premier to have signed on to China’s controversial Belt and Road Initiative.
    And then we have this: an article by Joshua Phillip: Darwin, Australia Adopts China’s Tech for Total Social Control, Technocracy, 5 May 2019
    From the article (paraphrased):
    Australia is preparing to debut its version of the Chinese regime’s high-tech system for monitoring and controlling its citizens. The launch, to take place in the northern city of Darwin, will include systems to monitor people’s activity via their cell phones . . . In Darwin, they’ve already constructed “poles, fitted with speakers, cameras and Wi-Fi,” according to NT News, to monitor people, their movements around the city, the websites they visit, and what apps they use. The monitoring will be done mainly by artificial intelligence, but will alert authorities based on set triggers . . .While Australian officials claim its operations are benign, they’ve announced it functions to monitor cell phone activity and “virtual fences” that will trigger alerts if people cross them . . . The nature of the “virtual fences” and what type of activity will sound an alarm still isn’t being made clear . . . The CCP’s [Chinese Communist Party] smart city Social Credit System is able to monitor each person in the society, tracking every element of their lives—including their friends, online purchases, daily behavior, and other information—and assigns each person a citizen score that determines their level of freedom in society . . . The CCP is now taking the first step to build such a high-tech totalitarian system, by using credit ratings and monitoring and recording every detail in people’s daily life, which is very frightening. The regime . . . . .[is] exporting the system, and its “China model” of totalitarian government, as a service of its “One Belt, One Road” program. When the CCP builds its infrastructure abroad, its surveillance and social control programs are part of the package.
    Is this not sedition?

  4. Nighthawk the Elder

    As any engineer will tell you, China also cheats by substituting and mis-certifying engineered materials such as steel and alloys, unless you watch them like a hawk; from the melt all the way to loaded on board ship and even unloaded at the other end.

    Yep, cheap Chinese steel… cheap, inferior, off specification, inappropriate, reduced life span, poorly heat treated, deceitfully labelled, potentially dangerous, Chinese steel. Hope they don’t use it anywhere lives could be put at risk.

  5. Confused Old Misfit

    an article by Joshua Phillip: Darwin, Australia Adopts China’s Tech for Total Social Control, Technocracy, 5 May 2019

    Notice how “they” are never named.
    Notice how “officials” are never named.
    Notice how the citizens of Darwin voted for all this.
    No…?

  6. Bruce of Newcastle

    Stern Hu is still in gaol because Rio pissed off the Chinese with iron ore pricing. Both Rio and BHP pulled all personnel out of China after that.

    Two Canadian businessmen were recently sentenced to death in China, almost certainly because of the Huawei CFO being arrested in Canada.

    Business is war for the Chinese. They still bitterly resent the Opium Wars.

  7. J.H.

    It was always a mistake to allow our political class and our so called social elite to rub shoulders with Communist China. It was better when they were an enemy and not a “competitor”. The divide was clear and opportunities for contact were limited.

    Our useful idiots are ill equipped to recognize the deceit, let alone combat it…. Indeed, they may even welcome it as Dan Andrews has.

    All political creatures envy the power that Socialism offers. It whispers in their ear and they listen. The offer of naked power is hard to refuse… It’s like heroin to them. You don’t want our bureaucrats or our unschooled political representative anywhere near the ruthless expertise of Chinese Socialism.

    The Chinese were only ever allowed access to Western markets on the understanding that Communist China reformed its politics and economy. Allow its citizens to participate… however, it’s politics remain the same despite over 30 years of unfettered access to our markets. They played us. If Dan Andrews is anything to go by, our politics is becoming more like China’s….. They are “reforming” us.

    Communist China has to be defeated. There’s no alternative for those steeped in the ideology of liberalism and free enterprise. China is an obscenity to liberal society. It’s going to be harder now that we’ve allowed them to reach military parity and to cultivate allies like Dan Andrews…. We are well on the way to already having lost this fight.

  8. Fisky

    Half of parliament has probably been honey-trapped by Beijing, and the rest are in their pocket.

  9. Fisky

    All political creatures envy the power that Socialism offers. It whispers in their ear and they listen. The offer of naked power is hard to refuse… It’s like heroin to them. You don’t want our bureaucrats or our unschooled political representative anywhere near the ruthless expertise of Chinese Socialism.

    You just have to look at all the ALP politicians calling for a “soft” line on Beijing, to have a strong sense of who’s been fooling around behind the missus’ back, and whose CCTV “performances” are in the CCP vault.

  10. Terry

    You can hardly blame Daniel Andrews.

    Victorians voted for him. They love him. Polls and elections agree.

    They’ve earned what’s coming their way. Really earned it. The most socialist State in the Federation.

    More broadly, Australia dodged a similar bullet a couple of Saturdays ago, but only just and quite temporarily. The path remains the same. It is only the speed that has changed.

    An optimist might believe that other Australians would observe The Peoples’ Republic of Victoriastan and heed the warning, but in reality, they will also end up voting for the yoke.

    When the shit finally hits the fan, we can all rejoice together – we voted for this.

    I very much look forward to the treason trials reserved for our “leaders”, Chief Chatters, the Condescendi, the Twitterati and the entrenched bureaucratic parasites as the “average joe” finally wakes up, gets super-pissed-off and reaches for the pitchfork, tar and feathers.

    That will be a fine day. We’ll all be poorer, lighter, used to not having luxuries like toilet paper and modestly fed on a steady diet of lentils, mung beans and once-household pets, but a fine day it will be nonetheless.

  11. mh

    How does China cheat on trade? Let us count the ways.

    According to the theories of economic libertarians, China would only be hurting itself. 🤦‍♂️🤦‍♀️

  12. Infidel Tiger

    A total and complete ban on any Australian politician working for any Chinese lobby group or SOE must be enacted.

    Andrew Robb, Alex Downer et al should be jailed and their assets seized.

  13. Rockdoctor

    John Smith101

    A friend who is ex Army knows a few spooks who are horrified at Darwins move. Apparently all the way up into Canberra same. Long & short despite assurances China will have no access to the info as he has been told like Huawei theres no guarantee that back doors not have been programmed into the software. That’s what is concerning int agencies.

    As for Bruces comment on the Opium Wars could cheap Fentinyl oddly enough be their gift back along with methamphetamine.

    In the end demographics is against China & despite the doomsayers like Gordon Chang on China they have slowed but continue to grow, it will be interesting to see how much further they rise before reality bites from within or the hawks now in the ascendancy in the Politburo do something uncharacteristically rash…

  14. Behind Enemy Lines

    J.H.
    #3031852, posted on June 1, 2019 at 3:07 pm
    It was always a mistake to allow our political class and our so called social elite to rub shoulders with Communist China.

    Well said, J.H. Lots of insight in the rest of your post as well. Our political class is for sale, and we should’ve kept a closer eye on who was buying.

  15. Terry

    Andrew Robb, Alex Downer et al should be jailed and their assets seized.

    Absolutely!

    There are “proceeds of crime” laws against drug dealers, for example.

    We might want to compare the actual damage caused.

  16. Squirrel

    Admitting China as a member of the WTO was a complete and utter frigging joke, obviously driven by a combination of blind greed and a naive belief that if the West played nice, so would the Chinese Communist Party.

    Dealings should always have been on the basis of strict and genuine reciprocity – e.g. they get to buy assets in our country, when we get to buy equivalent assets in their country, with the same property rights and protections in reality – not just on paper, or at some time in the unspecified future.

    The current spectacle of the US Government being pursued in US courts by an indignant Huawei is a perfect example of the double standards which have been allowed to operate.

  17. BrettW

    Was reading about the steel the other day and was surprised to learn that John Holland, who are using the above steel, is now owned by China Communications Construction Company, a state owned enterprise. The steel is produced by one of their other companies.

    See the Holland Wiki entry for a para about a children’s hospital built in Perth recently. The roof panels, sourced from China, were found to contain asbestos.

    Anybody remember the front page pic on The Australian a few days before the election. Showed Bill Shorten amongst a large group of contruction workers. All were Chinese. Would be interesting to know where pic was taken and on which project. I think it was in WA.

    I believe CFMEU used to complain about AWU undercutting them on wages deals on projects. Dan going a step further.

  18. Rockdoctor

    large group of contruction workers. All were Chinese.

    Just an observation. Was in Sydney CBD a couple of weeks ago, noticed the same there on construction sites there. First time I’ve really noticed it…

  19. max

    China cheats its own people by subsidising us who trade freely with them.

  20. max

    I give you example from my former country SFRY:

    state company sold 10 million shirts to German buyer for 10 million German marks.

    German worker can buy that shirt after 1 hour work
    Yugoslav worker need to work 1 months to buy that same shirt.

    winner are German people and subsidies workers in that particular Yugoslav company — losers are 99% of other Yugoslav workers.

  21. Roger

    Admitting China as a member of the WTO was a complete and utter frigging joke, obviously driven by a combination of blind greed and a naive belief that if the West played nice, so would the Chinese Communist Party.

    Recognising China in the first instance was the mistake.

  22. John Constantine

    Chinese envoy tells Vanuatu it expects support in return for aid
    https://www.theaustralian.com.au › nation › foreign-affairs
    Jan 30, 2018 – “The ambassador told me straight up, ‘There is no free lunch’,” Mr McGarry told The Australian. “I can say that because we were on the record at …

  23. John Constantine

    https://www.theguardian.com/cities/2018/jul/31/no-cambodia-left-chinese-money-changing-sihanoukville

    The peoples liberation army sending worker drones to build projects with peoples liberation army supplied materials, paid for with loanshark finance through the peoples liberation army.

    Growth in Gross Domestic Debtfunded Product Uber Alles.

    Comrades.

    For the locals, this ongoing transformation is divisive. Some are benefiting from an influx of money the city has never seen before, but many are being driven out by the skyrocketing cost of living.

    Kong Samol, 32, a tuk-tuk driver, is one of those losing out. “Because of all the Chinese businessmen here, my expenses have gone up but my earnings have gone down,” he says. “My rent has increased from $50 to $150 and it’s unaffordable for me. The owner wants to kick me out of my room so he can rent it to the Chinese who will pay so much more than I can afford. I know so many people who came here for work but have moved back to their villages because rent is impossible now.”

    Cambodian Property Ponxi.

  24. John Constantine

    https://www.bloomberg.com/news/features/2018-02-15/a-chinese-company-has-conquered-a-piece-of-america

    And at the construction site, it was building a gargantuan casino with a crew of hundreds of Chinese, scores of them working illegally on tourist visas. So many laborers were getting hurt that Rohringer’s colleagues began keeping an unofficial spreadsheet, separate from standard hospital records: a grim catalog of broken bones, lacerations, puncture wounds, dislocated limbs, and eyes penetrated by flying metal. The dead man Rohringer saw was not, of course, a tourist who’d stumbled over a railing—he was a builder named Hu Yuanyou, and he’d plummeted from a scaffold. His colleagues hadn’t called 911; instead, they’d pulled the work clothes off his broken body in a clumsy attempt to obscure his identity. The less that outsiders learned about the casino, the better.

  25. Arky

    China is unstoppable.
    They are a massive presence across an entire hemisphere, and 1/7 of the Earth’s population.
    They have decided that they are destined for dominance, and have carefully put in place everything from soft power, to a complete industrial base; from a controlled diaspora, to a rigorous education system.
    Once they reach parity with the US and Europe with the penetration into their industries of advanced technology like CNC, they will easily lope away from the West.
    The question isn’t how we stop them, but how we handle the transition of the centre of civilisation’s gravity shifting inevitably to China.

  26. Tel

    China cheats by subsidizing manufacturing with cheap loans and cheap energy, and also by turning a blind eye to environment, health and safety standards. Because of its cheating, it already dominates industries ranging from ship production and refrigerators, to color TV sets, air conditioners, and computers.

    In terms of a subsidy, China doesn’t have a magic tree creating wealth any more than any other nation, so every subsidy to manufacturing must come from somewhere else. I guess my question is where?

    Seems like their biggest advantage is having no unions, and plenty of cheap labour. As for “cheap loans” you have to accept that all the Western economies have central banks creating artificially low-interest credit and the price-inflation that inevitably comes from that … it’s arguable whether this is an advantage, I’m sure it works if you can get yourself into a position where you get first bite of that new money. In the long run it tends to make the economy less productive (or that’s the Austrian theory anyhow).

    Regarding the low environmental standards, and poor safety standards … can that be called “cheating” when they never made any particular promise otherwise? It does raise the question when the Han Chinese are happily pushing Uyghurs into slave labour conditions as part of their “reeducation and training” program. Are Australians OK with buying those products? Do we even know which products? China would say it’s good for those Uyghurs to become productive Chinese citizens, forget about any independence. Other people might say, “You are capturing people, putting them in prison and forcing them to work.”

  27. BrettW

    So the question for CFMMEU workers is are the Chinese run construction companies in Oz using Union workers or has their Union received donations that don’t require them to employ members ? Naturally such non Union workers will be paid less thereby undercutting their jobs.

    This type of scenario came up in the TURC where a Chinese owner gave evidence about donations to NSW CFMEU even though did not employ any of its members. What did he get for his money ?

  28. None

    I will also be looking very carefully at Dan Andrews bank balance, trusts, family interests. Unless he’s totally and utterly stupid which is I admit a possibility you should be getting some payback for his largesse towards the Chinese. David Andrews is setting up Victoria as a beachhead and Victorian adjust sleep walking.

  29. Tel

    Above all, China cheats by stealing key technologies and intellectual property from the United States and other countries. These activities range from cyberespionage and forced technology transfer down to massive open-source collection and plain-old physical theft.

    I think that’s a key issue, but as with everything it depends on your point of view.

    The majority of Western knowledge in terms of Science, Mathematics, Culture and Philosophy is being given away for free and we are kind of bound by our own standards in terms of free distribution of learning material. A Chinese tourist can walk into any public library (including most university libraries and the various state libraries) and simply read books to become educated in whatever you like. It can’t be called “theft” when it’s out there for all. So can any Western student, although seems we waste our youth on SJW campaigning these days. I use things like Pythagoras’ Theorem most days, but I didn’t invent it, of course most of everything was copied from someone. There’s vast amounts of easily accessed Scientific literature, and I have no doubt the Chinese read quite a lot of it … good for them.

    I agree there’s plenty of copying going on in China. The Chinese spent a generation killing off their entire intellectual class, getting rid of their best and brightest. You can’t expect them to replace that quickly.

    There might be some proprietary information they stole, and we already have laws against that if there’s specific cases that can be tracked down. Regarding things like Patents, those are a Western concept of limited intellectual property protection to encourage invention. The Chinese never really had a similar concept. We are attempting to impose our way of thinking on them.

  30. max

    Arky
    #3032114, posted on June 1, 2019 at 8:34 pm
    China is unstoppable.

    All the way until 1989 you can find western intellectuals saying same thing about USSR — it will overtake us soon really soon

    Man China is paper tiger build to fiat money inflation and debt — it is only question of time when they are going to implode.

  31. Karabar

    “The government is good at one thing. It knows how to break your legs, and then hand you a crutch and say, ‘See if it weren’t for the government, you wouldn’t be able to walk’.”
    Harry Browne

  32. rickw

    See the Holland Wiki entry for a para about a children’s hospital built in Perth recently. The roof panels, sourced from China, were found to contain asbestos.

    Same issue with what they have been building in the Pacific.

  33. Nob

    max
    #3032133, posted on June 1, 2019 at 9:19 pm
    Arky
    #3032114, posted on June 1, 2019 at 8:34 pm
    China is unstoppable.

    All the way until 1989 you can find western intellectuals saying same thing about USSR — it will overtake us soon really soon

    Sure, but anyone could see then that the USSR wasn’t exporting anything that the rest of the world couldn’t do without.

  34. Nob

    China has copied even our small specialist company’s gizmos.
    Not well, and anyone outside of China that tried them has regretted it.

    I met a Chinese engineer who told me he’d seen the copies in Western China and thought our company name was just a generic name for the type of gizmo.

    The bastards also copied some photos I took at great personal hazard crawling around well sites, and used them for a technical explanation on their website.

    There are two options:
    1. Let them do it and you lose money.
    2. Take legal action and lose a sh1tload more.

  35. John Constantine

    Their keating has no issue with being paid respect money by the same Tyrant that puts a million Uighers into re-education slave labour gulags.

    Their abc is silenced on the gulag issue by the ‘ go along to get paid along’ examples of their tribal leaders.

    The peoples liberation army secret police control the company that already controls yarragrads security cameras. After buying the arsenal of military style assault rifles for yarragrads paramilitary Death Squads their andrews Nazgul regime will find it progressive to obtain one belt one road information from the chicom secret police controlled camera network on the identities and activities of Dissenters.

    5g Tyrant supplied networks mean never having to say you are sorry, if you do nothing wrongthink in the first place

    Comrades.

  36. John Constantine

    https://www.smh.com.au/business/companies/cctv-cameras-chinese-spies-and-an-unusual-delegation-20181130-p50jd7.html

    it was not benign. If data mining did occur, as the insider believes, it could have hoovered up much of the firm’s pre-takeover information, including data which may not have survived beyond the corporate transition.

    There are also worries that Securecorp’s ultimate Chinese owner might exploit its ringside seat in Australia, which has included 96 CCTV cameras in Melbourne’s CBD and security operations at everything from Westfield shopping centres to Glencore mines and the Melbourne Cricket Ground. In addition there is Securecorp’s boast of being a “trusted partner in the Defence industry” and its $11.5 million contract with the Australian Electoral Commission which runs until September next year.

    Politicians like their green-nat andrew broad were happy to be monitored by the chicom secret police cheating on his wife with funding cheated from taxpayers, in Chicom territory, as he was hellbent on pursuing the progressive agenda anyway.

    What files exist on our money grasping corruptocracy politicals and our drug marinated copulating frenzy of a media class?.

    Skynet is here, We are the ones not self-aware.

    Comrades.

  37. yarpos

    Cheap steel! yeah ! thats what you want for infrastructure project. Hopefully none of it gets used to hold up Freeway signage.

  38. Empire 5:5

    Economics is and has always been a subset of politics.

    Yes it is. I dream of a world where I can buy something (from my phone) uniquely useful to me from a yak herder in Outer Mongolia, unencumbered by officious thieves. It remains a fantasy.

    A New York clothing wholesaler is accused of selling $20 million worth of Chinese-made counterfeit U.S. military uniforms and other gear to the Department of Defense, other government purchasers and companies that supply the U.S. government, according to the Justice Department.
    —————
    Items Kohanbash arranged to counterfeit included 200 military parkas used by Air Force personnel in Afghanistan, the department alleges. The counterfeit parkas lacked special fabric designed to make the genuine articles difficult to detect with night vision equipment.

    Other counterfeit clothing included labels falsely stating that it was flame-resistant, the department said.

    https://www.stripes.com/ny-wholesaler-charged-with-selling-counterfeit-us-military-uniforms-from-china-1.583705

  39. Tel

    Chinese-made counterfeit U.S. military uniforms … probably with a back door installed!

  40. Tel

    There are two options:
    1. Let them do it and you lose money.
    2. Take legal action and lose a sh1tload more.

    Maybe you need a bigger government to protect your rights … or sommat like that.

  41. John Smith 101:

    When the CCP builds its infrastructure abroad, its surveillance and social control programs are part of the package.
    Is this not sedition?

    Yes it is. But it prospers so none dare call it Treason.

  42. Admitting China as a member of the WTO was a complete and utter frigging joke, obviously driven by a combination of blind greed and a naive belief that if the West played nice, so would the Chinese Communist Party.

    Five years of being called a Sinophobe is finally coming to fruition and a tiny corner of Australia is starting to realise the China threat.
    China wages war across the entire spectrum of human behaviour and endeavor.
    The battlefield is not just the arena the physical confrontation occurs in, the battle also takes place in the factories, the schools, and the ruling classes of the enemy.

  43. Arky

    We lost forty years ago, because a segment of society accepted the notion that they had no obligation to fight for our industries to be efficient, but that you could simply let whole industries go and that there would be no consequences.
    Everything is inter- connected.
    You fuck up industry policy it feeds into training, which pressures governments to feed unsuitable individuals into degree courses, which dumbs the universities down and accelerates the rise of Marxists in the faculties. Then you have a generation of communicators in effucation, in media, in culture and art, who know only how to disrupt and destroy.
    Death spiral.
    At this point unrecoverable.
    But we must act as if it is recoverable and hope something external comes up.

  44. Fisky

    Admitting China as a member of the WTO was a complete and utter frigging joke, obviously driven by a combination of blind greed and a naive belief that if the West played nice, so would the Chinese Communist Party.

    It was a mistake and the consequences included the Global Financial Crisis, which was caused by the need for a property-debt bubble to keep GDP going when manufacturing collapsed in the early 2000’s (thanks to China’s WTO entry).

  45. Chris M

    How about that? Their diesel usage has dropped to where it was 10 years ago. Curious.

    Are Australians OK with buying those products?

    For all significant purchases now I’m very careful to avoid Chinese, besides it’s all crap, you are buying a headache unless some western company is there looking over their shoulders and holding a gun to the workers heads. Last week a $4k purchase after asking a lot of suppliers I managed to source Sri Lankan made product (western company) feel good about it.

  46. BorisG

    Donald Trump’s former chief strategist Steve Bannon has warned that Australia will become “a tributary state” to China unless the Morrison government joins the US in forcefully challenging Chinese hegemony in the region.

    This is from a chief strategist who championed Trump’s isolationism. Since booting Bannon, Trump has sent mixed signals on Chinese expansionism, and appears to care little about it (as opposed to trade). Moreover it is clear that Trumps base does not care about it either (as opposed to trade and jobs).

    It is difficult for Australian leaders to pursue a steady course when American posing is so confusing.

  47. BorisG

    Donald Trump’s former chief strategist Steve Bannon has warned that Australia will become “a tributary state” to China unless the Morrison government joins the US in forcefully challenging Chinese hegemony in the region.

    Actually in the one run Australia will be become a province of China (or maybe a special administrative region, at least initially) regardless of Australian government policies. This is a matter of simple demographics not politics. Victoria will be first.

  48. Mark M

    World’s First AP1000 Nuclear Reactor Reaches Full Power

    08/16/2018

    China now has a total of 38 nuclear power plants with a total installed capacity of 36.9 GW. In the first half of this year, China’s nuclear plants produced 4.07% of the country’s cumulative power generation of 1,618.26 TWh. Cumulative nuclear power generation surged 12.52% over the same period in 2017

    https://www.powermag.com/worlds-first-ap1000-nuclear-reactor-reaches-full-power/

  49. JB of Sydney/Shanghai

    Of all that I have read so far on this subject today, Arky is the one that has made the most sense.

    Most people in Australia, including many Cats, have little or no idea about what is happening in China.

    I suggest a few days in Shanghai, Pudong, Hangzhou,….maybe a trip to Beijing on the bullet train (Takes just over 4 hours for the 1500 k trip.)

  50. max

    Nob
    #3032263, posted on June 2, 2019 at 7:37 am

    Sure, but anyone could see then that the USSR wasn’t exporting anything that the rest of the world couldn’t do without.

    Australia had a total export of 230 billion of US$ and total imports of 228 billion of US$ leading to a positive trade balance of 1,721 billion of US$

    GDP (current US$): 1,3 trillion

    Export are 17.6% of economy
    Imports are 17.5% of economy

    https://wits.worldbank.org/CountryProfile/en/AUS

    Mine biggest expanses are:

    Rent 30%
    Grocery 20%
    Electricity/Gas/Water 5-10%
    Entertainment 5-10%
    Petrol/Insurance/transport 5-10%

    I have Chinese mobile, and clothes and drive Japanese car.

  51. BorisG

    Just came back from a four week trip to China, visiting seven megacities all over the country.

    The development is mind boggling.

  52. max

    RIDING THE DEBT TIGER

    The West is riding a tiger. It is the tiger of debt. The Chinese oligarchs are riding this same tiger. The growth of Chinese debt has been stupendous. It was in the range of $2 trillion in 2000. By 2014, it was over $28 trillion. Today, David Stockman estimates, it is $40 trillion. There has been nothing like this in economic history. The Chinese government can hold the rickety banking system together by constant intervention today, but it cannot do this forever. The exponential nature of the debt is going to overwhelm the Communist bureaucrats’ attempts to hold the economy together.

    The same comment applies to Western Keynesian capitalism. Debt is rising constantly. Any setback in the economy that threatens the ability of corporations and governments to service their debts apart from central bank monetary inflation threatens the legitimacy of Western governments.

    Politicians in China kick the fiscal can down the road. Politicians in the West also kick the fiscal can down the road. But the cans are growing steadily, and this growth will turn exponential at some point. There will be a great default in China, and there will be a great default in the West. When the legitimacy of the governments that have amassed this much debt is called into question by their inability to service this debt, both China and the West will be ripe for new political regimes that are legitimized by different moral and economic categories.

    CONCLUSION

    The great default is going to be international. Political regimes around the world are going to fall. The fall of China’s regime will be spectacular. Maybe the fall of North Korea’s regime will be even more spectacular, but North Korea’s economy plays no role in the world economy. China’s economy does.

    https://www.garynorth.com/public/17830.cfm

  53. JB of Sydney/Shanghai

    Good to see that BorisG. Have you had any luck in getting people in Australia to have some idea what is happening over there?

  54. max

    JB of Sydney/Shanghai
    #3032797, posted on June 2, 2019 at 6:31 pm
    Good to see that BorisG. Have you had any luck in getting people in Australia to have some idea what is happening over there?

    Communist central planing, Keynes fiat money inflation debt and infrastructure building that can not pay back investment

  55. max

    you can see here:

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4-XDxCb92X4

    American government did it in 1929 build roads and extend depression till WW2
    Hitler did it in Nazi Germany too.

    Ending is same ruin.

  56. BorisG

    American government did it in 1929 build roads and extend depression till WW2
    Hitler did it in Nazi Germany too.

    Unlike the Americans and the Germans they are doing it for forty years and counting. In that period they lifted at least half a billion people out of poverty – arguably irreversibly. I also think there will be a correction but I don’t think it will be a total implosion.

    And the the New Deal extended the depression by a few years – what a big deal? Suggesting it caused WWII is quite stupid.

  57. JB of Sydney/Shanghai

    .Here is how China ranks in World Auto manufacturing,number 1. From almost zero a few years ago.

    Something to consider.

    World’s Top 20 Largest Passenger Car-Producing Countries In 2017 (Million Units)
    China: 24.81 million units
    Japan: 8.35 million units
    Germany: 5.65 million units
    India: 3.95 million units
    South Korea: 3.74 million units
    United States: 3.03 million units
    Spain: 2.29 million units
    Brazil: 2.27 million units
    Mexico: 1.9 million units
    France: 1.75 million units
    United Kingdom: 1.67 million units
    Iran: 1.42 million units
    Czech Republic: 1.41 million units
    Russia: 1.35 million units
    Turkey: 1.14 million units
    Slovakia: 1 million units
    Indonesia: 0.98 million units
    Thailand: 0.82 million units
    Canada: 0.75 million units
    Italy: 0.74 million units
    Malaysia: 0.42 million units
    World’s Total: 73.45 million units (73,456,531 passenger cars)

  58. max

    Gary North:

    MERCANTILISM FOR DUMMIES
    Asian politicians have been committed ever since 1945 to a form of mercantilism. They have exported goods to the West, especially the United States. They have built up foreign currency reserves: debts issued by the national governments of the importing nations.
    China holds over $2 trillion in total reserves — not all dollars. India holds almost $300 billion. These two nations were third-world basket cases as recently as 1990.
    Instead of building up gold reserves, as mercantilist nations sought to do in Adam Smith’s day, they have accumulated IOUs issued mainly by Western national governments. Asian central banks have inflated their domestic monetary bases in order to purchase foreign currency-denominated debt.
    On the day that they cease buying American debt, other buyers must be found — buyers who think that 0% per annum is a good rate of return for an asset — the dollar — that is declining in purchasing power.
    Asian nations continue to give away their nation’s goods in exchange for promises of repayment in foreign currencies that will decline in value. Are they really this stupid? No. They are merely ill-informed economically. They do not believe Smith’s Wealth of Nations. They remain mercantilistic in their thinking. They think that promises to pay no interest, long-term, is worth buying.
    Why? Because they began subsidizing their export sectors as the pathway to wealth. They began inflating in order to keep down the price of their currencies in international markets. This made it cheaper for Western importers to buy their currencies, and in turn buy exported goods.
    Once their domestic investors had invested capital in factories to produce goods for Western consumers, any reduction of the subsidies would threaten unemployment. They have been riding the digital tiger.
    This domestic monetary inflation has created capital market bubbles in their nations. The governments fear a collapse of their stock markets and real estate markets. They fear widespread unemployment even more. So, they have instructed their central banks to inflate. China has increased M2 by 30% a year over the last year. Before, the central bank had inflated at 16% or so.

  59. max

    Gary North:

    MERCANTILISM LIVES!

    Asian politicians are the victims of a false economic theory that was refuted by Adam Smith in 1776. They have been hypnotized by the success of the post-war Asian tigers in building their economies through exports to the West, especially the United States. That legendary success was based mainly on the increased productivity of Asian industry through the creation of domestic capitalist markets.

    Yet, even here, there was a mercantilist element. Asian exporters were governed by domestic government bureaucracies. Only certain products were allowed to be exported. The most well known of these bureaucracies is Japan’s MITI: the Ministry of International Trade & Industry.

    Like mercantilists in the seventeenth century, today’s mercantilists draw a false conclusion. Instead of working to reduce the control of government over the domestic economy, especially central bank control, Asian politicians conclude that government control is the basis of the success of the export sector. Also like seventeenth-century mercantilism, the political benefit from catering to a minority sector of the economy — exports — is high. Exporters know where their bread is buttered: in Parliament. They and the politicians can justify Parliament’s splendid pay-off — pressuring the central bank to lower the international value of the currency by inflating it — by arguing that “exports are good for the economy.”

  60. max

    Gary North:

    the Communist rulers of China are economic dolts. They have loaned over $3 trillion to Western governments to subsidize massive deficits of aging countries that will all default. How stupid is this? Incomparably stupid.
    The rulers have told the central bank to inflate the money supply. This has set up the boom phase of what will be a massive bust.
    The population is getting wealthier, but with the central bank funding $3 trillion in bad loans to the West, enabling Western consumers to buy cheap goods whose resources could have been used to manufacture cheaper goods for China’s masses, the wealth that would have accrued to China’s masses was transferred to the West. Was this stupid, or what?
    The key to China’s wealth is the productivity of the Chinese. Production that is aimed at other producers creates demand. China has the largest number of producers in man’s history. But the idiot Communist engineers who have run the country squandered $3 trillion of this wealth by subsidizing the export markets by way of Western governments’ IOUs.
    The Chinese central bank has lent its capital to deadbeat governments. The money will never be returned. The West’s interest rates are lower because of this. China gets paid very little for its loans.

  61. max

    Gary North:

    China’s Communist engineers concluded in 1979: “The poverty-stricken Chinese will get rich when the People’s Bank of China sends foreign aid to rich Western governments.” How stupid was that?
    When the crash comes, the Chinese Communist engineers will get a lesson in misallocated resources.
    Freedom works. Central planning doesn’t.
    The thing that is seen — large building projects — hide the things not seen: the goods and services that newly productive Chinese citizens could have bought, had anyone produced them.

  62. Ragu

    large group of contruction workers. All were Chinese.

    Just an observation. Was in Sydney CBD a couple of weeks ago, noticed the same there on construction sites there. First time I’ve really noticed it…

    On the big projects, cartels rule. Once you have sucked the right cock and gotten cosy with the union then your business will get invitations to the next big project.

    Price matters. So ya gotta bid cheap. So it helps if your emplyees aren’t fully across IR law. That also helps the union when they stand over a bloke and tell him he needs a ticket to work on site.

  63. Ragu

    It’s not a Chinese conspiracy, it’s tight arses like ‘boff selling everyone out to sell a shoddily built one bedder for a coupla hundred grand.

  64. BorisG

    China’s Communist engineers concluded in 1979: “The poverty-stricken Chinese will get rich when the People’s Bank of China sends foreign aid to rich Western governments.” How stupid was that?
    When the crash comes, the Chinese Communist engineers will get a lesson in misallocated resources.
    Freedom works. Central planning doesn’t.
    The thing that is seen — large building projects — hide the things not seen: the goods and services that newly productive Chinese citizens could have bought, had anyone produced them.

    It has so far worked for forty years, despite all the naysayers. And it not just built infrastructure, it literally transformed the lives of hundreds of millions. Could it have worked even better with less control ? Perhaps but we don’t know for sure. In 1990s Russia removed a lot of controls but this did not bring much growth only poverty. Then Russians voted repeatedly for a guy who restored strong government controls.

    Crash may occur in China but it will not reverse the 40 years of wealth growth. Maybe it will only happen when the source of cheap Labour has been exhausted. Which will take a couple of decades.

  65. John Constantine

    Australias property developer landsharks will be first up against the wall when the revolution comes.

    Comrades.

  66. BorisG

    I was born and raised in USSR. I knew from personal experience that central planning does not work. It results in empty shelves and long lines for basic necessities.

    But in China you have neither empty shelves nor long lines. Perhaps they are doing it in a different way. Their five year plan does not say how many toothbrushes will be produced each year.

  67. Barry

    If China cheats by subsiding their exports – or my imports – please cheat away.

    Keep cheating – it’s good for me as a consumer.

    Can the real economists pls stand up ?

  68. Chris M

    Back in the early 90’s China was so still dirt poor they were doing barter deals with the Australian government. No mass money printing in that back then. For example a shipment of cheap SKS rifles was part of the payment for a large wheat purchase.

    One of which was used by Martin Bryant to kill a large number of people.

  69. Iampeter

    But in China you have neither empty shelves nor long lines. Perhaps they are doing it in a different way. Their five year plan does not say how many toothbrushes will be produced each year.

    It’s amazing what momentum some economic freedom can create. But this can all be undone if Xi keeps moving China backwards.

    Don’t worry though. According to Kates and everyone here, China is going to crush us with more central planning and regulations.

  70. JB of Sydney/Shanghai

    To get rich is glorious. Deng Xiaoping

  71. max

    For BorisG

    You can not have economic freedom with out political freedom — that clash is comming to China for sure it is question of time, societies to not fall apart overnight. Debt level and mismanagement will come home to roost

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