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A More Assertive China

China is getting more aggressive— at sea, in the air, in space, with journalists. We’ll look at China’s assertive moment.

Chinese Defense Minister Chang Wanquan inspects a guard of honor during a welcome ceremony prior to a meeting with Indonesian Defense Minister Purnomo Yusgiantoro in Jakarta, Indonesia, Monday, Dec. 16, 2013. (AP)

Chinese Defense Minister Chang Wanquan inspects a guard of honor during a welcome ceremony prior to a meeting with Indonesian Defense Minister Purnomo Yusgiantoro in Jakarta, Indonesia, Monday, Dec. 16, 2013. (AP)

Press cards renewed today in China for a whole raft of American news reporters who had been afraid they might be kicked out before New Year’s.  China’s been playing hardball lately, and not just with press credentials.  Last week in the South China Sea, a near-miss between US and Chinese naval ships, as a Chinese vessel cut off a US destroyer.  Further north, China declaring a new Chinese air zone in the teeth of Japan and South Korea.  On the moon, a Chinese flag now shines bright – and why not?  But there’s a new vibe from Beijing.  This hour On Point:  the new assertive China, and what it means.

– Tom Ashbrook

Guests

Barbara Demick, Beijing bureau chief for the Los Angles Times. (@BarbaraDemick)

Jonathan Fenby, writer, journalist and analyst. Former editor of the Observer Newspaper and South China Morning Post. Author of “Tiger Head, Snake Tails: China Today, How It Got There and Where It Is Heading,” “Modern China: The Fall and Rise of a Great Power” and the forthcoming “Will China Dominate the 21st Century?” Managing director of the China team at Trusted Sources.

Dean Cheng, senior research fellow at the Heritage Foundation’s Asian Studies Center.

From Tom’s Reading List

Wall Street Journal: China’s Regional Aggression Takes Flight “In recent weeks, the Chinese have reportedly agreed to purchase Russian Su-35 fighters, among the most advanced in the world. Beijing also has unveiled an upgraded strategic bomber that will carry a new long-range land attack cruise missile. In September, Chinese air forces flew remotely piloted surveillance drones over the Senkakus.”

Foreign Policy: Chinese Netizens Applaud Beijing’s Aggressive New Defense Zone — “On Sina Weibo, China’s Twitter, over 200,000 recent posts mention the air defense map; of those sampled, the vast majority lauded Beijing for defending China’s sovereignty and territorial integrity. As one user wrote, the map ‘lets the little Japanese know that our power does not stop at the tip of our tongue.’ Another wrote it was time for China to ‘take Japan to school and teach it how to act.’”

TIME: Foreign Correspondents in China Do Not Censor Themselves to Get Visas — “The situation isn’t pleasant. Already, the epic air pollution in Beijing, as well as a perceived hardening by the Chinese government toward the foreign business community, has caused many expats to flee. Among foreigners, 2013 has been the year of good-bye parties. When I left Beijing on Sunday, I joked with friends that I might not see them back in China. But it wasn’t that funny.

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  • Shag_Wevera

    I’d love to do a wargame with China. All our stuff vs all your stuff. They thought they were bad-assed in the early 50′s, and they are starting to feel that way again. You’ll rule the world someday, BUT NOT YET!!! China is arrogant without the muscle to enforce it.

    • Ray in VT

      I found this awesome game online called Global Thermonuclear War. It seems like a blast to play, and what could possibly go wrong. All I have to do is put my phone receiver into the dial-up cradle and away we go…

    • Jon

      what does human species have besides muscle?

    • RolloMartins

      Who’s being arrogant?

  • blue ocean

    Facts check:

    1950s, US first invented Air Defense Identification Zone

    regardless any concern from other countries.
    1969, Japan estalished ADIZ which is merely 150 km from China’s east coast.
    Over 20 countries have ADIZ around them own territory and most of them are allies of US.
    2013, China joined this club.
    Tom, is it a fair to say China being aggressive or assertive in this context? I will not be surprise if one day Japanese accusing US nulcear their country without mention anything about Pearl Harbour. It is indeed how they teach history to their kids for a long time.
    Wake up!

  • AC

    can you talk about their population issues? specifically, the surplus of single men. which i’m also now hearing about ‘left-over’ women?

  • Paul Meade

    Hmm. So we’re so open on reporting about all our wealthy and influential donors to NPR? What about NPR cancelling their program about the Koch brothers recently?

    • JeanBruce

      NPR has a program on the Koch brothers? Did it discuss growing up in New York as the mayor’s kids?

  • Chuck P

    I am glad we have some competition in space again. Perhaps this will wake up people in our government who think that exploration is not important part of the growth of a nation and humankind.

    • geraldfnord

      Actually, I think that Chinese history itself provides one of the better arguments for space research: nations without an Outside can think that they already have everything they need and never need adopt a new idea, even as the metaphorical ground under their feet quakes and the old Eternal Verities look somewhat worse for wear and beg replacement by new ones. (This is made worse by every dominant class’ heartfelt belief that its dominance were only right and natural, and so any change that might alter conditions were _wrong_.)

      The same might be true of global civilisations; Iain M. Banks’ “Against a Dark Background” explores something very much like this, though not exactly so.

      Related:
      Saying ‘We can put a man on the Moon, why can’ t we
      [INSERT DESIDERATUM HERE]?’ loses most of its force if it’s no longer obvious that we can, in fact, put someone on the Moon.

    • hennorama

      Chuck P — why would humankind want competitive exploratory efforts rather than cooperative ones? Putting an unmanned rover on the moon is not exactly a leap forward, right?

      There are currently 15 nations involved in the International Space Station. China’s efforts are duplicative. They also have a small orbiting space station, which seems to be a test platform for future independent orbital platforms, for their sole benefit.

      Much of China’s efforts seem aimed at their own populace, to demonstrate their capability and flex their scientific muscle and economic capability. Nationalistic efforts, all.

  • JeanBruce

    I thought this was going to be about China toying with our fleet or the lack of a treaty cleaning up territorial claims at the end to World War II.

  • geraldfnord

    After a couple of centuries of being told they were racially inferior to Western nations, and then culturally inferior to Japan, and battered by both of those, badly and worse, and they can be expected to have shoulders-worth of chips. (Like all such, this is a rough explanation, not definitive or complete or an omnipotent excuse for them.)

    Add in a nation which has shed an ideology which, though at variance with reality, provided handy explanations for _everything_ and a definite moral compass, and there’s a mental vacuum that ‘let’ s not starve’ can probably fill, but not ‘let’s get more stuff we don’t absolutely need’ can’t, and so you have the makings of a nationalistic middle class.

  • http://hlb-engineering.us/ HLB

    Freedom of navigation. Many US warships are nuclear armed and very capable of defending themselves. End of discussion.

    Thanks much. Ex-sailor, nuclear power. USS California, 1974-1977.

    • Ray in VT

      It seems pretty unlikely, as one of the guests said, that they would want to start a war over such things. An act of open aggression seems pretty highly unlikely at this point.

      • Labropotes

        Download and watch Ip Man to see how deep is the historic resentment in China to the west. China’s growth rate is stalling. Government is choking on corruption. There are 100mm young men with little to do but resent their disenfranchisement. No reason not to mobilize them with nationalism to grab some land and resources. For the ancestors!

        • Ray in VT

          There is certainly plenty of historical precedent for nations using nationalism and militarism as a way to distract the population from issues at home. It may be easier to stir up resentment against the Japanese than to clean up the air in Beijing.

          • hennorama

            Ray in VT — indeed, the use of a “boogeyman” is a useful distraction, somewhat akin to the US use of the “enemy-du-jour.”

          • Ray in VT

            Like the War on Christmas for some?

          • Labropotes

            The trick to droning a guy carrying a Christmas tree is to lead him less.

          • Ray in VT

            Yeah, that tree can really slow a guy down, but you really have to take him down before he puts an angel on top or, worse yet, sets up a nativity scene on his lawn, which I hear that people get sued for or something.

          • hennorama

            Ray in VT — indeed. And of course, The War on Terrrr.

          • M S

            hennorama is just basically a pro-illegal immigration activist who is bent on the destruction of anything referred to as “American”.

          • hennorama

            M S — thank you for the further demonstration of your clueless and evidence-free assumptions.

            Well done, sir.

          • M S

            Don’t think I forgot our discussion from a few month ago…clearly you have…you made it clear that you were pro-illegal immigration and pro-Dream Act.

          • hennorama

            M S — more assumptions, based on zero facts and evidence.

            Please present the words from [hennorama] that led you down that particular garden path, sir.

  • mitspanner

    American journalism has historically been heavily under the influence of intelligence services like the CIA. Is it any wonder that the Chinese are taking a hard line? Take CBS 60 min recent “expose” on the NSA by their anchor John Miller a “former” employee in the office of the Director of National Intelligence (DNI).

    See Operation Mockingbird: Operation Mockingbird was a secret campaign by the United States Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) to influence media. Begun in the 1950s,. . .
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Operation_Mockingbird

    • mitspanner

      In other words American journalism is rife with agents of America secret government, posing as journalists, whose job it actually is to prevent real investigative journalism, to maintain the charade that we live in a democratic society and to try to put the brakes on our looming national crisis.

      Why wouldn’t China want these people in their midst?

  • Ray in VT

    The recent Chinese desire for us, among others, to either notify them or get permission to fly through this air/naval zone without them having the either will or the muscle to enforce it makes me think of the Emperor of the Middle Kingdom insisting that the barbarian kings of Europe were all minor rulers who must pay tribute. In that latter case, though, the Chinese view of themselves was far out of synch with reality. Now, I think, they are quite aware of where they stand in the world, although I wonder if perhaps they see others as thinking of them as less than reality justifies.

    • Labropotes

      I think we should treat China like we’d want to be treated, regardless of its ability to force us to. If we don’t like what they’ve proposed, maybe we could say, fine, when we are coming within x miles of your coast, we’ll let you know. This is no different than saying “excuse me” when reaching for the gravy.

      China has no arable land, no more than the US has east of the Mississippi. They have no oil to speak of. They must protect their supply lines. Why taunt them for it?

      • Ray in VT

        I agree that that the Golden Rule is good to go by, but isn’t a part of this issue that the Chinese are pushing the line of where they are claiming as a defense zone far beyond that which is either standard or recognized?

        • Labropotes

          They are negotiating. I’m saying that we can offer an alternative that we are more comfortable with. They are never going to be happy with the US crashing their training exercises, or cruising their coasts in spy planes.

          I just hope we don’t spill our precious bodily fluids over there when there are so many important uses for them right here at home!

          • Ray in VT

            Like Rutland crushing Manchester’s blood drive record?

    • http://www.findingourdream.blogspot.com Hal Horvath

      I think China intends a classic Chinese method of gaining territory (unlike Tibet) — slow, creeping, weight, over *decades* of time. Like an elephant just standing there too close. After a while the tigers move off…. But the US is more than only a tiger of course.

      • Ray in VT

        I think that they have a sort of patience as a nation that we lack. I don’t know if that is real, but I think that that is the perception at least by some. If it is real, then I do wonder if the age of their civilization/nation plays a role there. After all, our nation is about as old as a Chinese dynasty of moderate length, and our time at the top is pretty small when considered in the course of history.

  • M S

    I wonder what is the impact of so many Chinese citizens emigrating to the U.S. both legally and illegally? Will the U.S. eventually be weakened by the influx of foreign born populations who have more loyalty to their countries of birth?

    • Ray in VT

      That was a question that was asked of the Japanese in World War II, although the same question did not seem to be asked on such a scale of people of German or Italian descent. Do you think that there is a reason that these immigrants will retain such a loyalty whereas previous groups did not?

      • M S

        Actually, it was asked of those of German descent.

        • Ray in VT

          But not nearly in the same way. I don’t think that there was real widespread assumptions that someone with a name like, for instance, Eisenhower might not be able to fight against people who shared their ethnic heritage in the way that the Japanese were questioned and assumed to be disloyal.

          • M S

            Yet we see Jews in America supporting Israel in a manner that would not be in alignment with your reasoning…you would think they would be neutral, yes?

          • Ray in VT

            I think that there is quite a difference between advocating for the interests of Israel, an established if, at times, problematic, ally, or the actions of someone like Jonathan Pollard, and questioning the loyalty of an entire religious or ethnic group. Should we question the loyalty or patriotism of someone like former Secretary of Energy Stephen Chu because of his ancestry? Should someone question my loyalty because much of my mother’s family came from Scotland? How should we question your loyalty?

            I think that to make such blanket statements is highly problematic, and people whose ancestors have not exactly fit the idea of what it means to be “American” have tended to be more highly scrutinized.

          • M S

            Is advocating for attacking Iran mere support for Israel? Not really. Is starting another war in the Middle East a policy that good for the United States? No…far beyond just support…it sets forth actions that is only good for the foreign country in which they have ties to – religious or whatever. In fact the idea of dual-citizenship equates to dual-loyalties which will inevitably be in conflict. At the very least, I would say that it varies from one identity group to another.

          • Ray in VT

            I suppose that we can thank Jewish Senators Lindsay Graham and Saxby Chambliss for such a stance?

            I don’t know that once you get past the immigrant generation there is much really firm sorts of loyalty to any native land. I don’t feel that I need to caste a wary eye towards my wife’s family for trying to bias U.S. policy towards Italy.

          • M S

            No, but you can thank the warmongers Schumer and Cantor. And Graham and Chambliss are stuck in Neo-con mode, knowing very well who lines their pockets.

            And I suppose, the fact that we have Americans and American visa holders fighting for Islamic extremist groups in Syria is of little concern to you.

          • Ray in VT

            Who on here is a warmonger?:

            http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_Jewish_American_politicians

            McCain has certainly advocated bombing people, but he isn’t really a neo-con, at least to my way of thinking.

            Does it concern me? Perhaps somewhat, any such people are pushing for the establishment of some sort of a fundamentalist state there. It would concerns me more when people take actions in that direction here. I tend to look at people fighting in foreign causes in light of the fact that Americans have a history of fighting in other conflicts overseas. The Lafayette Escadrille or the Abraham Lincoln Brigade. One of my boss’s friends fought with the Sandinistas back in the 1980s. It can get problematic, and I guess illegal, if such people align themselves with people whom we have labelled as terrorists, although in the current situation there are certainly groups fighting there that are not militant Islamists.

    • Chuck P

      Well it has happened on this continent before with the native population vs. Europeans.

      • M S

        Yes, yes…heard that before. What about the present?

        • northeaster17

          In the 19th century it was the Chinese Exclusion Act. A perfect example of paranoid racism. Then came the Irish and many others who were going to destroy our republic. Today it is the Mexicans. Some how we are still here. Whatever.

          • M S

            Yet, we see Mexican-Americans working with the cartels and Chinese immigrants spying for Chinese conglomerates. Way to not confront the question.

          • northeaster17

            And Italians in the mob and Americans doing alsorts of espianage. My point is that so many of these ideas to make us safe actually target those that mean no harm. They are targets because of how they look or how they sound or how they hold onto old customs. They become scap goats to make us safe.

    • http://hlb-engineering.us/ HLB

      Much too easy to come to the US thanks to the rich persons’ State department VISA programs. HLB

    • hennorama

      M S — please list exactly which nations’ immigrants to the US would be satisfactory to enter, in your view?

    • http://www.findingourdream.blogspot.com Hal Horvath

      The US has the enormous advantage over every other nation of diverse and massive immigration bringing our nation great energy and strength of many kinds.

    • Labropotes

      Kudos for speculating on a tough topic knowing you’d get junked for it.

      • hennorama

        Labropotes — you may want to peruse a few of M S’s prior comments before lavishing further praise.

        Here are some samples:

        Commenting on an article on thehill.com, titled “Prominent pro-Israel group throws its weight behind Syria strikes”:

        M S:
        “No wonder these people were thrown out of ever country they ever inhabited.”

        See:
        http://thehill.com/business-a-lobbying/320119-pro-israel-group-throws-its-weight-behind-syria-strikes-#comment-1101461309

        And also on thehill.com, about an article titled “US: ‘Serious concerns’ over new Israeli settlements (Video)”:

        A reader posted a cartoon depicting an israeli soldier shielding a woman holding a child, versus a “Muslim terrorist” using a woman as a shield. This was MS’s comment:

        “This is why they walked to their deaths without any resistance to the Germans…”

        See:
        http://thehill.com/blogs/global-affairs/middle-east-north-africa/316659-obama-administration-slams-israel-on-new-settlements-amid-peace-talks#comment-1000218166

        And also, this was part of an exchange under the same article title:

        “M S vutsrq • 4 months ago −

        “Yet you call me antisemitic while you go ahead lie. A clear demonstration of the Jew’s evil and deceptive ways…such typical behavior…and you still wonder why? They world would be such a better place without ‘you know who’.”

        See:
        http://thehill.com/blogs/global-affairs/middle-east-north-africa/316659-obama-administration-slams-israel-on-new-settlements-amid-peace-talks#comment-998311837

        • Labropotes

          Thanks. I agree those are some troubling views. Yet many people share them. We are better off having an honest exchange of views all around. Nothing wrong with letting M S know how you feel, as you do.

          • hennorama

            Labropotes — thank you for your response.

            I appreciate and respect the sentiments expressed in your comment, and don’t disagree.

            [M S] is of course free to hold and express such views. Whether or not [M S] should be lauded for such holdings and expressions is another matter entirely.

        • Labropotes

          A JS Mill quote: “Complete liberty of contradicting and disproving our opinion, is the very condition which justifies us in assuming its truth for purposes of action; and on no other terms can a being with human faculties have any rational assurance of being right.”

        • M S

          hennorama Nice try, but where did I say anything remotely incorrect? I stand by my words…deal with it. Prove me wrong.

          • hennorama

            M S — I won’t elevate your odious opinions to relevance by engaging you about them.

            Your words speak quite loudly, all by themselves.

          • M S

            Well, you clearly felt they were relevant enough to repost them. Attempting to shame people with their opinions is such a typical Liberal maneuver…not happening here. And my words do not only speak loudly, but most know them to be true, everyone except for your ilk, that is.

          • Ray in VT

            I don’t know dude. Shaming? Some might call it providing context or insight into your positions. I don’t know how that would be a “typical Liberal maneuver”, but I certainly feel that there is something to be ashamed of in the statement “A clear demonstration of the Jew’s evil and deceptive ways” if that sentence can be taken as representative of your feelings towards that group. I feel that the statement “This is why they walked to their deaths without any resistance to the Germans…”, if it accurately reflects your feelings of how the Holocaust went down, as merely being historically inaccurate.

          • M S

            Well, what do my feelings regarding Jews or the Holocaust have anything to do with the influx of Chinese into the United States?

          • Ray in VT

            Based upon your questioning of the loyalty of people based upon ethnic background, as well as those statements regarding Jews, it seems to speak to prejudiced thinking towards some groups.

          • hennorama

            M S — presenting your words to the forum is intended to debunk the idea that you are Asking A Serious Question, and to caution others from treating you as having done so.

            Let your freak flag fly, and write as much as you want. Only you can be ashamed of your opinions, and you clearly are not. That’s all well and good, but if you are uncomfortable with your words being quoted, perhaps you might consider that in advance of clicking the [Post as M S] button.

            Your numerous nativist/anti-immigration comments, which are perhaps more relevant to your original post above, are easily found by anyone interested.

            Your original post is relevant to the topic of this show only in your mind. And as to your premise of “so many Chinese citizens emigrating to the U.S. both legally and illegally” and “the influx of foreign born populations” — let’s just say that the data do not support your premise.

            I urge you to demonstrate otherwise.

            BTW — one can’t help but notice your brave silence as to the original question I posed to you:

            “M S — please list exactly which nations’ immigrants to the US would be satisfactory to enter, in your view.”

            Bravely silent when questioned, and loud and proud when expressing your biases — very well done, sir.

          • M S

            Bravely silent? Hey moron, why would I answer your questions when you neither answer mine nor do not care for my “odious” opinions? Jeez, people are getting dumber and dumber all the time.

            BTW – I noticed you adore that word, odious. You should consider expanding your vocabulary or at the very least using a thesaurus.

            BTW2 – Actually the data does support my contention…the greatest increase in immigration to New York City in the last year have been from China…look it up and quit talking out of your a**.

          • hennorama

            M S — name calling will get you nowhere, and is simply another attempt at a distracting non-answer.

            Making a claim without citing a source is another timeworn technique, as is the very narrow focus of using NYC as proof of your premise of “so many Chinese citizens emigrating to the U.S. both legally and illegally” and “the influx of foreign born populations.”

            Data from one city and one year does not constitute validity for your premise about “the U.S.,” sir.

          • M S

            Just more dribble as usual. Another thing that I’ve noticed is that Liberals retort by saying that everything is “anecdotal”…which is ridiculously pathetic.

  • http://hlb-engineering.us/ HLB

    Japan, India, South Korea all need to grow up and stop hiding behind America’s defense skirts. Get your own militaries. AND PAY FOR THEM YOURSELVES.

    Otherwise our little Asian brothers will never become equals among nations: regardless of their economic prosperities.

    Hoober Doober

    • Ray in VT

      It does seem as though some of those nations have recovered enough from WWII to contribute more to their own defense.

  • RolloMartins

    Why is the Heritage Foundation the default for expert commentary? The Heritage Foundation is nothing but an ideologue-driven, extreme-right organization that has been exposed for its propaganda in the past. Stop having these people on.

    • James Patrick Dwyer Jr.

      I wondered the same thing. Makes no sense at all.

      • Ray in VT

        I also wondered a bit, and although I was only listening with one ear for part of the show, there wasn’t anything that comes to mind with what Mr. Cheng said that really raised any flags for me. Again, though, I was only half listening.

    • TFRX

      It’d serve the NPR audience better if the HF folks were made to answer for their abject failures, especially in the “security” venue.

  • http://hlb-engineering.us/ HLB

    Discuss Chinese theft of US security intelligence and engineering designs. America doesn’t need more chinks in its defense structures.

    A stronger China will ensure we don’t elect pussy-presidents {Clinton, Bushs, Obama} just when we need strong defense leadership to protect our national interests.

    Thanks much. Old School Liberal

  • jimino

    If we are really concerned about being threatened by China, the answer seems obvious: Encourage as much of our employment as possible be shipped there, buy all the products those Chinese workers make, then reduce the taxes on those living in the USA who profit from the deal, all the while going into debt and borrowing money from the Chinese profit-makers to finance the needs of Americans.

    That IS the plan, isn’t it?

  • James Patrick Dwyer Jr.

    China’s economy will replace ours as the largest in the world very soon. China will become the next world’s superpower and all it needs to do is quit buying our bonds, the value of our dollar will plunge and we will no longer be number one in anything. It has happened before to the Dutch, Britain, Spain and Rome. This is nothing new.

    • Ray in VT

      I think that there is a certain part of the generalized American mind that thinks that we will always be on top. Of course for many Americans that has always been the case in their lifetime, so it seems natural. As you point out, though, eventually that wheel turns and someone else gets a time to shine. China long had a position as a world leader, but then it fell upon centuries where it was downtrodden, but they are again on the rise. They were a great power, although waning somewhat, when Europeans first began exploring these shores (Vikings aside).

      • hennorama

        Ray in VT — I seem to recall another East Asian nation that was going to rule the world economically.

        How’s Japan doing these days?

      • James Patrick Dwyer Jr.

        China will rise and we will decline, it’s inevitable. We have lost our manufacturing base, we have lost our middle class and when the value of the dollar collapses we will lose our military advantage. We should have listened to president Eisenhower long ago and paid much more attention to other areas other than the military.

        • Ray in VT

          Eisenhower seemed to get fairly looked over for some time, but I think that there has been a greater appreciation for some of his actions and his legacy in more recent years.

        • J. Adams

          We – the people – didn’t lose these things – corporate USA gambled and lost; however, we the people have consistently stood idly by and let these idiots get away with it, with their wagging of dogs and the blind, lemming faithful trailing behind. We have become a nation of idiots, present company excluded as we are actually talking world politics and not about the Kardashians. But ever since Gore invented the internet and it went public, knowledge and reality have left – there is no better propaganda machines than the corporate Media and the internet, because if they say it or it was on the internet – then it holds that those “commentary”, “opinion”, etc., are factual and the holy truth. Corporate America will plan out an easy transition for the USA to become a wholly owned subsidiary of China and all the execs will have golden parachutes. You and I, however, will be holding the proverbial bag.

      • Human2013

        There’s only one question that remains: When wil the Chinese have military installations in the United States?

        • Ray in VT

          Whenever our decadence and arrogance reach the appropriate level? Maybe when we try to stop them from pushing opium on us.

    • Labropotes

      10-year treasury rate up 5 bp today. Calamity Janet is Yellen at her bloomberg this morning, hoping the wheel of fortune doesn’t stop at “bankrupt” before she gets to pick a letter.

    • http://www.findingourdream.blogspot.com Hal Horvath

      China was a net *seller* (yes, seller) of US bonds for several months this year.
      Fact. Look it up if you want to learn.

      And what happened to US interest rates?
      Still at very low rates.
      US 10 year rate under 4% is low. 3.5% very low.

      Right now the 10-yr is under 3%

      If rates *rise* to 4% that would be because the US economy is really strong…… it would be good news.

      • Labropotes

        China was a net seller in 3 of the last twelve months. But over that same period, including the down months, the average Chinese holding of US debt has increased by over 11 billion a month. Also, the Fed is purchasing around 35 billion a month. If demand for our debt were so great, we wouldn’t be printing money, diluting your savings, to clear the market — ie, to enable deficit spending. But go on believing whatever you want. Economically, the US is lost, so paperbag, no paperbag, it’s just personal preference now.

        http://www.treasury.gov/resource-center/data-chart-center/tic/Documents/mfh.txt

        • http://www.findingourdream.blogspot.com Hal Horvath

          Definitely China is maintaining their harmful currency peg, and that requires buying US securities in great mass over the course of a year. And China will continue so long as they try to maintain the currency peg and their mercantilism.

          My point is quite different.

          *When* China was a net seller, temporarily, *it had only a very small effect Treasury yields*!
          That’s huge news.

          It’s a full and dramatic shoot down of the popular idea that without China US Treasury rates would soar into crisis.

          That idea, so popular, repeated hundreds of millions of times across the nation in comments, etc.
          Entirely wrong.

          Why/How?

          Very simple, once you see it. Capital is like water, and the total of global capital is like an ocean.
          There is no such thing as US Treasury rates being independent of the total *global* savings rates — the total capital available for investment.

          For US rates, it does not matter one bit where China invests. Money flows like water, and a lot of that water flows here, because the US economy is still the engine, even now.

          Read my blog for more, if you like.

  • pearubu

    Fellow Americans, we are simply getting hoisted on our own economic petard: the reason China is rising, flexing its nationalist muscles everywhere – WE AMERICANS paid for it over the last 20 years by shopping at WalMart…the single greatest driver of shifting U.S. jobs to China, and therefore the single greatest enemy to the American middle class, and the single greatest friend to Chinese militarism.

  • marygrav

    Dear listener, what China is telling the US that WHITE SUPREMACY IS OVER. Jean Gimpel expressed this in his book: The End of the Future (1995). It was the last page in the text. China he wrote is reviving its 5000 history and letting the West’s biggest bully know that The Coolie is dead.

    Martin Jacque’s When China Rules the World (2009) writes about how China sees the world. He also tells how the Neocons brought the US and therefore the West to its knees financially. What was so dumb about George W. Bush in his quest to “democratize” the world was that he borrowed the money to do so from Communist China, thus further driving China’s rise to power. This must be the bigger joke in China than the rise of the T-Party.

    Tom needs to do some more research and not tow the line of ignorance that most Americans have of the world. But this is understandable since geography and history are mysteries to the American mind.

    The Europeans understand the world and if you listen to the BBC, you see the World Service displays a sophistication that does not exist in the American media. Every time I listen to news reports and reporters who claim to have live or live in foreign countries I hear the naive in their voice, actions and stories.

    Dean Cheng reminds me that peoples of color come in three stripes: Orioles; Coconuts; and Bananas, all of which have bleached their souls. China understands why previous regimes were overthrown. This is why they are cautious about press “freedom.” Especially when this criticism comes from the West.

    Don’t forget, the US does not have press freedom in that all the press and other media is corporate. In my small Iowa town the press and media choose to ignore certain segments of the community voice, including mine, because they think outside of the box. Their latest attempt to do away with Martin Luther King Day in the public schools goes unchallenged in the media. So much for the people having a voice.

    American Citizens are so concerned with what is going on outside of the country until even with a freedom of the press, they refuse to recognize that if Paul Ryan gets his way, over one million unemployed Americans will loose their benefits, which in real terms with they families may equal as many as five million Americans, being with a financial source of livelihood. Free American Citizens have allowed Food Stamps to be cut to children and the elderly in the middle of the Second Great Depression without the objection of the “free media.”

    What we need to do about China is to take the BEAM OUT OF OUR OWN POLITICAL EYE; before we try to take the speck out of the Chinese political eye. And remember Japan has a history with China. The Rape of Nanking was worst for China than 9/11 was for the US. Have we forgiven our enemies and made up?

    It seems the only people worldwide that must not remember their history are the Jews. Blacks are told to forget their Enslavement, but are reminded of it everyday do to Institutional Racism; now the China is told to forget its enslavement when the Holocaust and the Japanese Invasion happened in the same time frame.

  • HonestDebate1

    But really, couldn’t we just fill in the blank?

    “A more assertive ______”.

    The last thing despots need to worry about these days is bold leadership from America.

    • J. Adams

      And that in itself is my most fervent fear… the current leadership views of America in such turbulent international waters involving our allies and our biggest creditor

  • Michael Bristol

    If it ever comes to a stint at the Ministry of Manufactured Consent
    D. Cheng will have no trouble fitting in and they’ll be happy with his work.

  • Michael Bristol

    If it ever comes to a stint at the Ministry of Manufactured Consent
    D. Cheng will have no trouble fitting in and they’ll be happy with his work.

  • J. Adams

    Has anyone considered something of a smoke screen may be going on right now… Kim Jong-un just killed his uncle for treason, etc. China is now really pushing its might around – notwithstanding its long standing battle with Japan – but now it is starting to set its sights on the USA. N. Korea has been consistently antagonizing the international community with insane threats and complete disregard of embargoes, etc. Truthfully, the knowledge we have of N. Korea, its military, even the actual age of Jong-un is based upon supposition. And now, enter stage right, China – don’t fly over here unless you tell us, attempting to assert its maritime laws and almost causing a collision. It is almost like two 5 year old boys having a temper tantrum… only these 5 year olds have how many soldiers? how many weapons? how many secrets? All of this just seems a little too strange – stranger than fiction perhaps? What is the connection between these allies and these current perplexing deeds?

  • nycXpat

    Tom and producers – PLEASE avoid tormenting us with folks from the discredited Heritage Foundation. At a min, if you must, provide a balancing guest or three from think tanks with a more realistic world view.

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Apr 18, 2014
Russian President Vladimir Putin speaks during a nationally televised question-and-answer session in Moscow on Thursday, April 17, 2014. President Vladimir Putin has urged an end to the blockade of Moldova’s separatist province of Trans-Dniester. Trans-Dniester, located in eastern part of Moldova on border with Ukraine, has run its own affairs without international recognition since a 1992 war. Russian troops are stationed there.  (AP)

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Apr 18, 2014
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Apr 18, 2014
Russian President Vladimir Putin speaks during a nationally televised question-and-answer session in Moscow on Thursday, April 17, 2014. President Vladimir Putin has urged an end to the blockade of Moldova’s separatist province of Trans-Dniester. Trans-Dniester, located in eastern part of Moldova on border with Ukraine, has run its own affairs without international recognition since a 1992 war. Russian troops are stationed there.  (AP)

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