EIR LEAD EDITORIAL FOR SATURDAY, JANUARY 29, 2022
Time To Start Thinking
Jan. 28, 2022 (EIRNS)—Today’s “news” is that the three full months of escalating British and U.S. accusations that Russia is “imminently” about to invade Ukraine, along with a crescendo of threats to “crush” Russia when it does, are getting so wild that Ukraine President Volodymyr Zelenskyy had to reject them publicly and tell American officials to “calm down” and give him some economic aid. But British media still escalate, now putting the most provocative possible words in President Joe Biden’s mouth. Their purpose is to provoke the war they accuse Russia of, then attempt to destroy Russia’s economy.
But because Russia has moved more and more into an economic and strategic partnership with China, this is the most dangerous form of bluffing. The United States and European economies are being corroded by “Green New Deal” technological primitivism; their banking systems are facing a hyperinflationary explosion. The partnership of Russia and China is more than strong enough for a new Cold War; but the best would be to cooperate with the United States in international development, and in a new credit system that can replace a bankrupt “everything bubble” of debt.
China’s 2021 GDP growth was reported 8.1% over the year. U.S. GDP growth in the fourth quarter was 6.9% relative to the third quarter, but for the full year 2021 it was just 5.7%. Moreover, more than 70% of the fourth-quarter U.S. growth was attributable to businesses building up their inventories; the remainder, to increased consumer spending.
China’s national planning and reform body attributed its faster growth to greater and growing investment in research and technological innovation. The other key factor is technology in infrastructure; China is investing $300-$400 billion a year in new infrastructure, led by high-speed transportation and new power supplies in many countries. Joe Biden’s “infrastructure” visit to a Pennsylvania bridge that collapsed just before he arrived was poignant; but putting another bridge there is not going to raise America’s economic productivity.
Because U.S. growth for the fourth quarter only was supposedly higher in that quarter than that of China, Biden on Jan. 27 lied to the American people, saying that afternoon, “For the first time in 20 years, American GDP grew faster than China.” But the opposite is true. And just under $16 trillion equivalent, China’s GDP, even in nominal dollar terms, is now more than two-thirds that of the United States at just over $22 trillion, and will overtake it in coming years.
China’s industrial production grew by 9.6%, fixed asset investment by 4.9%, job creation was at 12.69 million, according to the National Bureau of Statistics release Jan. 17. China’s real disposable personal income, after inflation, rose by 8.1% in 2021. On the other hand, Americans’ average real weekly wages fell by −2.4% over the year. U.S. Industrial production was 3% lower than its peak level of mid-2018; manufacturing output was 5% lower. And regarding labor productivity, with labor forces growing fairly rapidly in both countries in 2021, a long-term trend nonetheless continued: China’s productivity growth was 1.6%; that of the U.S. economy grew at an annual rate of 0.6% for the first three quarters of 2021, the latest figures available.
The Chinese banking system’s loans outstanding, offered both to the domestic economy and to many countries in the Belt and Road Initiative framework, rose by 11.7% in 2021; loans outstanding of the U.S. banking system grew by less than 0.5% over the year.
Americans and people of the NATO countries should think: Zbigniew Brzezinski’s idea of saving Afghanistan from the Soviet Russia, produced al-Qaeda, and a country destroyed by 40 years of war; Tony Blair’s neo-cons’ idea—saving Iraq, Syria and Libya from Russia—produced ISIS. The crazy idea of saving Ukraine from Russia, would give us a country run by neo-Nazis; but before we even get there, it’s producing a new Cold War against the effective partnership of Russia and China, and may produce a world war.
Rather than this insane pursuit of a global superpower military confrontation, Americans in particular should look at what Russia and China are actually doing. They are developing their economies, making loans for high-technology infrastructure projects in third countries, developing advanced nuclear power technologies, jointly working toward a base for scientific work on the Moon in the 2030s, and looking for the United States to join in the projects of the Belt and Road Initiative China started in 2013. And the trans-Atlantic nations’ economies need a New Bretton Woods credit and monetary system or their banking systems are going to explode again, soon. This is the way to do it.