When western commentators speak of an economic ‘third way’ they often mean the globalist neo-liberalism of Bill Clinton and Tony Blair, a system which imposes the worst of socialism with its regulations and heavy tax burdens on small business and individuals, while simultaneously unleashing the worst of capitalism on the world: globalist corporate giants who control entire countries more than democratically elected governments and they do so with little taxation, regulation and accountability to anyone.
When others speak of an economic third way outside of the west, one must look to one of the greatest leaders of any country in modern history, Deng Xiaoping who was Paramount Leader of China between 1978 and 1989.
Deng came to a China still recovering from the horrors of Maoism and decided to implement something called Market Socialism. Deng proclaimed that “Socialism and a market economy are not incompatible” and set about transforming China from a backwards Maoist economy into the modern industrial dynamo that is a top economic superpower which will soon eclipse that of the United States. In many ways China is all ready vastly ahead of America in terms of production and exports. In a few short decades China has jetted miles ahead of Japan, Germany, France, Britain, Canada and the rest of the wider world that once mocked China.
Deng is the perfect example of applying moderate reforms with the zeal of a quiet revolutionary. Too often in other countries people get it the wrong way around. In the Soviet Union, Gorbachev and his right hand man Alexander Yakovlev introduced anti-patriotic reforms which lead to the illegal disintegration of the Soviet Union and the economic chaos of the 1990s where pirate oligarch capitalism destroyed one of the most prosperous state’s in history. The USSR could have been easily saved had a Russian Deng appeared, instead Russia ended up with Boris Yeltsin, a drunken traitor seduced by the incompatible economic systems of the west.
Deng Xiaoping was able to avoid the worse excesses of the ideological dogmas of Mikhail Gorbachev, Yakovlev and later Yeltsin by focusing not on the demands of foreigners or the misunderstood needs of those in his country, but instead by focusing on the practical needs of the economy and the power that China’s untapped workforce had in unleashing a new era of prosperity and happiness upon the nation, one that Chinese Premier Zhou Enlai had advocated for shortly after Mao’s death.
By combining market reforms at a local and regional level with state oversight at a national level, China has become a country that generates capital internally and via international engagement and trade. China has accomplished this without losing sight of a sovereignty minded management and regulation of that capital.
Deng has been vindicated by the modern successes of China. By contrast, the globalist west has failed miserably. The economic creativity of the ordinary people has been crushed, workers have lost their jobs, their wages and their living standards while only the international corporations have come out on top and even among the top 1%, many individuals are finding that their own ‘usefulness’ is quietly being replaced by artificial intelligence.
The west ought to be searching for its own Deng Xiaoping when instead political leaders are ripping each other apart because Donald Trump is less of a globalist than they are.
Recently, German Foreign Minister Sigmar Gabriel said that “the West has become smaller, at least it has become weaker”. He went on to say that he witnessed the “…breakdown of the US as an important nation”.
Gabriel is right insofar as the west is weaker than it used to be an its influence is smaller because of that. What he appears not to realise is that the policies of his government and not those of the still newly elected Donald Trump are the cause of this. Donald Trump hasn’t even had time to change anything on a global scale, not least because his domestic opponents are sabotaging his every attempt to do so.
The west acts with all of the imperial bravado of yesteryear but it no longer has the budgets to afford ruling the world like its own private colony. China by contrast does not seek conquest but seeks profit from the sale of useful, real commodities. China is in this sense, both more modern and more successful than the west.
China is honest about what it can and cannot produce and is in the midst of setting up a new trading and logistics network called ‘One Belt–One Road’ to build on the collective pooling of economic strength. Meanwhile, the western economies are geared less towards production and consumption than towards finance capitalism that produces nothing but takes a great deal of valuable resources out of the local and national economies.
China is at peace with what it can do and what it cannot do. This is why it seeks to build a cooperative and mutually beneficial trading network where all party states both produce and consume goods along the proverbial belt and road.
By contrast, the west have reduced themselves to nations that produce little and consume much. Now though, ordinary consumers have few means through which to consume. The result is economic stagnation and political discontent and social collapse aided by a perverse socially liberal agenda that values psychopathy and individual decadence over honest work and normal behaviour.
The sad part for those in the west is that if a western version of Deng Xiaoping were to appear, they would be castigated and derided by the ruling elite and mainstream media. Donald Trump tried to challenge the globalist agenda and look how the leaders of France and Germany treat him? Imagine what they would do to a real genius, a man like Deng Xiaoping.
The statements, views and opinions expressed in this column are solely those of the author and do not necessarily represent those of The Duran.