As the United States goes through a political transition, and the European Union struggles, China senses a moment of weakness in the west. They are moving quickly to fill a perceived “leadership” gap, using it to elevate their own status.
Now, China is even claiming to be able to “lead the world” through what they refer to as a “crisis in the west.”
An op-ed in the People’s Daily (an arm of China’s propaganda apparatus), said, “Western-style democracy has played a progressive role in history, but right now it has heavy drawbacks.”
China has also praised globalization, a huge irony since they put massive restrictions on trade and investment in their own country, but nevertheless they fooled the Davos Elites.
The West’s struggles are not automatically China’s strengths
China is trying to seize an opportunity. And with many western leaders devoid of confidence in democracy and economic freedom – Justin Trudeau for example – China is making some progress in undermining confidence in the western model.
With all that said, here’s the problem for China:
China’s system requires massive repression, and is not easy to export.
China spends more money on internal security than they do on their military. And they spend a lot on their military. China blocks access to the worldwide internet, with the Great Firewall of China restricting the free flow of information. Thousands are jailed for having the “wrong” opinion, and workers are treated as nothing more than cogs in a brutally oppressive machine.
By contrast, countries like Canada, the United States, and the UK + some members of the EU, are still beacons of opportunity for millions around the world. People clamour desperately to get into the US, Canada, and Europe. You don’t see that same desperation to get into China.
That’s because – at a very fundamental level – even a flawed country that is based on individual freedom and economic freedom is more in line with our aspirations as human beings. A system that must hide information about the world, jail people for free thinking, and invest gigantic resources in domestic repression, is not a system that is built for humans to flourish.
That’s why China, for all their talk and all their clever propaganda, should not be believed when they claim to be “leading the world.”
China may be talking a good game, but their form of government is not the path the world should follow.
Photo – Twitter