Friday, November 02, 2012

First Japan now China

I was in my mid-20s when the "Japan is conquering us economically" fever peaked. Shortly to be followed by Japan's "Lost Decade" and subsequent stagnation. I claim no deep expertise, but the conventional wisdom in regard to China feels eerily similar. Of course the growth China has achieved is a stunning national achievement--as was Japan's meteoric rise from the ashes of World War II. But China has many problems: endemic corruption chief among them, a fragile authoritarian regime with no alternative organizing forces, the crazy gender imbalance due to female infanticide, fear but no love from its neighbors...I am going on record that I bet we are within 5 years of China's high-water mark in terms of being considered an emerging superpower.

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