September 16, 2005

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Mark Steyn and Hugh Hewitt talk China

Hugh Hewitt invterviews Mark Steyn:

HH:...We never talk about China, but there was a story in the Wall Street Journal today by Samina Ahmad, that pointed out that China currently has 360 million mobile phone subscriptions, and a hundred million online internet users. Four of the ten most trafficked internet sites are Chinese. Are we paying enough attention to these people, Mark Steyn?

MS: Well, I think we can always pay more attention to China. And particularly, I would say the Russian-Chinese border, which is going to become a huge flashpoint in the years ahead. Basically, China is slowly going to annex the Eastern part of Russia. That's my view. But at the same time, the idea that China's dictatorial government will not effectively impede its expansion to world power status, China has severe structural problems. I'll just give you one example. Their distorted birth rate, artifically distorted birth rate, which means they have this huge surplus of men. Unless they're figuring on becoming the first gay superpower since Sparta, that is going to be a huge issue for them. Where do these people go? They have got huge structural problems, and so this idea that China is going to supplant America around about 2050, I think is complete nonsense.

HH: But they are buying just about everything that can be bought on the open market, and they are upset everytime someone says no, we might need a little of the oil ourselves.

MS: Yes, and that is an issue. I mean, in my own country, in Canada, they're covertly buying up Canada's natural resources, because they're a resource-poor country. But what eventually becomes the issue is whether a country of its present size is going to proceed to superpower status. I just don't think that's possible. There's a widening gap between the rural inland China and these coastal cities that are booming. And that in the end is going to bust that country apart. There'll be two, three, four Chinas on the world's stage eventually.

I report. You decide.

posted by Simon on 09.16.05 at 04:51 PM in the


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Yowzas Simon, where did you come across this gem? You are really plungeing the depths of sinology with this one. Reading it is like watching a blind man leading the deaf and dumb. I'm still tittering about the first gay superpower since Sparta bit. ESWN once wrote that the majority of western discourse on China was a tragic farce best represented by an old British comedy where everyone was spouting talking points but no one had any clue as to what was going on. I'm inclined to agree.

posted by: Jing on 09.16.05 at 09:34 PM [permalink]

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