Taps Coogan – October 20th, 2020
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George Friedman, Geopolitical Futures‘ Chairman and author of Flashpoints – The Emerging Crisis, recently gave a talk at the World Knowledge Forum in which he walks through world history since 1900 and details why the general consensus on the future of geopolitics rarely turns out to be true.
What’s the current consensus that Mr. Friedman sees as flawed? The assumption of China’s continued economic and geopolitical rise:
“What we see as we move from 1900 to 2000 and from 2000 to 2020… is that our expectations, the way we normally approach them, is simply extrapolation, that what is happening now will happen in the future, only more so, more intense… The idea of discontinuity being built into the system wasn’t expected… “
“The problem with any exporter is he depends on the ability of his customers to buy. The problem of China is that its biggest customer is the United States. The United States is the largest importer in the world. China is a country that would like to develop internal consumption but given the vast poverty of the interior of China that is very hard to do… When I look at China I see… a country that’s embattled. Internally, it is facing crises in its borderlands: Xinjiang, now inner Mongolia, problems with the Indians, problems in Hong Kong… We see significant problems on the part of China, yet the public opinion is that China is on the rise and the United States has declined… I don’t regard China as a rising nation. It is a nation that has risen. It has done beautifully given the fact that it started as a Maoist country. It’s hard not to do better than that…”
Enjoy the full discussion above.
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