China US Trade War

The world’s falling apart, apparently

Well the head of the IMF says so anyway

The head of the International Monetary Fund (basically a big piggy bank for the world that lends money if a country is in distress and gives advice on how they should run their economies) has warned that the world trade system is being "torn apart".

What it means: Pretty strong words. Christine Lagarde (AKA the IMF boss) said in a speech that the escalating 'trade war' between the US and China (both are trying to restrict the sale of the others' products in their own countries by making them more expensive) could have negative consequences.

But Lagarde doesn't think that's the answer. Then again, IMF would say that. They think that the more open international trade is, the better. Others (like Trump) would disagree: they'd rather close off their borders, build up the capacity of their industries without competition from abroad, and then go back out.

Who's right? As always, depends – workers may benefit from being part of international labour regulations, but they may also get better salaries in a more closed off economy. Then again, consumers may end up paying higher prices if there's less competition from abroad. There's a lot of 'what-ifs' to who's right and who's wrong, but Lagarde seems pretty certain where she stands anyway.

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Reader Comments

  • RW

    Your right to a degree. You mentioned “the wandering Jew”.

    I elaborate that the Jewish people, historically have tended to migrate almost exclusively to locations that are economically and culturally vibrant already. I would speculate that Jews have thrived in these places and have often improved the bounds of their economies and knowledge base.

    You can also ask; how many massive entertainment conglomerates, Nobel winners or billionaires has Isreal developed? If Jews are so capable, why isn’t Tel Aviv the Rome of our time?

    Jews are successful because they value education, maintain a strong social cohesive, they actively monitor and have a good sense for Zeitgeist wherever they are and they carefully choose the places they settle and congregate themselves heavily in these choice locations.

    But most importantly (haulocaust increased the importance of this aspect), they actually designed their culture for success. They not only attend Harvard, they use what they learned to better the group as a whole. With as much, they studied intricate networking systems, adapted to it and in many cases improved upon them. (See how Japan acquired Aegis warships and made them better).

    Of course there is nothing wrong with any of this. It’s when you elaborately gain disproportionate power in any society where you would stand out, you must take care when attempting to make a society better (Civil Rights movement) and rewriting that society all together (mass immigration). Ask blacks in China, Mexico, Philippines or India how much opportunity they have? Go to businesses owned by their American diaspora and see how many blacks they hire. Go to Silicon Valley and see how many East or South Asian tech workers wish they could work with more black people. California might work as a state, but as a nation, I think your rolling the nuclear dice here. I hope we can succeed as a tolerant pluralistic superpower but at this stage in human societal development, it’s a pipe dream.

    And if Jews really are the icon for success, they would see that fundamental human successes happen over generations. Just look at the rest of the planet? Are we ready?