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The Obama Years- A GOP love story

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Old 08-27-2014, 04:25 PM   #226
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Re: The Obama Years- A GOP love story

The question isn't really whether China "picks" Russia or US, it's at what point do they think they can bully the smaller nations around them enough to get what they want, and in that bullying, do they miscalculate the response of their neighbors, which triggers a rise that becomes self fulfilling. We see that right now, with Russia and Ukraine, Russia clearly is living in a realpolitik frame, and the question is do they miscalculate. Going further, and this is like an ant telling an aardvark it better be ready for a fight, but Canada of all countries proclaimed that "[they are] ready for confrontation with #Russia if the country expands its ambitions in the #Arctic region." Who do you think Canada would rely on to back them up? (http://rt.com/news/182992-canada-sov...arctic-russia/) Or when Poland sends aid to the Ukrainian Army, who underwrites the ties?

Or when the Japanese mull building a new era fighter jet, Japan mulls building its own fighter jets - Channel NewsAsia, do you think they will fail to protect their interests if China miscalculates? and do you think the US would disown Japanese protection if it got down and dirty fast?

Simply pointing out that compare pre-WWI world, with the current criss cross of political alliances, public and secret, and it's pretty crazy. And if the US leaders think like Wilson, Chamberlain, Carter, I think the US could be in for a rude surprise.
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Old 08-27-2014, 04:39 PM   #227
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Re: The Obama Years- A GOP love story

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Originally Posted by tshile View Post
Yeah I get it, and I respect your rant and opinion

)
As do I ,I just don't agree with all of it .
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Old 08-27-2014, 05:55 PM   #228
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Re: The Obama Years- A GOP love story

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Originally Posted by tshile View Post
The problem with that point of view is it ignores the significant progress made in relations between us and China in terms of trade and cooperativeness. There are many that view China as a communist-in-name-only country that's on the verge of officially moving into a more democratic state. The idea that we're constantly on the brink of war with China is one that seems to be about a decade or two out of date.

The middle east is an interesting and complex issue to say the least.
Sorry, anyone buying into the "China is moving into democracy" line is, IMHO, sadly and dangerously deceived. China may be moving away from the failed economic system that is communism but that does not mean it is moving towards democracy. Central to any democratic govt. is the respect for and observance of the Rule of Law. The Chinese elites do not, have never and are unlikely ever to buy into that concept. From a recent article on China by the UK (which has labeled the China a "Country of Concern"):

Quote:
CHINA Latest Update: 30 June 2014 The second quarter of 2014 saw ongoing restrictions on civil and political freedoms in China. The climate for human rights defenders (HRDs) and civil society was particularly poor. There was a marked increase in the number of human rights and civil society activists arrested or detained in the weeks before the 25th anniversary of the violent suppression of popular protests on 4 June 1989.
More:
Quote:
Restrictions on freedom of expression persisted. Journalist Gao Yu, who disappeared in April, and detained citizen journalist Xiang Nanfu, were shown on state television confessing to leaking state secrets and public order offences respectively. Beijing film-makers Shen Yongping and Shi Zhangkai were detained after making a documentary about constitutionalism. In May, central authorities announced a crackdown to remove “illegal and harmful information” from instant messaging apps such as WeChat.

New government regulations came into force in May banning people from petitioning central authorities without first going through local authorities. Officials said that this was intended to improve the efficiency of the petitioning system. Rights activists expressed concerns that it would restrict the channels available for citizens to raise grievances.
And ...
Quote:
Restrictions on freedom of religion or belief persisted. Sanjiang Church in Zhejiang Province was forcibly demolished in May, reportedly as part of a campaign against illegal structures, while other churches in the province were reportedly ordered to remove crosses from their buildings. Henan pastor Zhang Shaojie was tried in April on public order and fraud charges. Diplomats were refused access to his trial.
https://www.gov.uk/government/public...e-30-june-2014

From Amnesty International:
Quote:
East Asia

In China, serious human rights violations continue to be committed. This includes torture, execution (in which China is world leader), excessive use of force in public order policing, repression of dissent and forced repatriation of asylum seekers without recourse to a refugee determination procedure.

Foreign governments continue to fail in challenging China's disastrous human rights record, however, the recent award of the Nobel Peace Prize to the Chinese human rights defender, Liu Xiaobo, may lead to some positive change in that regard.
Asia and the Pacific | Amnesty International USA

Some specifics:

Quote:
Justice system

The state continued to use the criminal justice system to punish its critics. Hundreds of individuals and groups were sentenced to long prison terms or sent to Re-education Through Labour (RTL) camps for peacefully exercising their rights to freedom of expression and freedom of belief. People were frequently charged with “endangering state security”, “inciting subversion of state power” and “leaking state secrets”, and were sentenced to long prison terms, in many cases, for posting blogs online or communicating information overseas that was deemed sensitive.

Lawyers who took on controversial cases faced harassment and threats from the authorities and, in some cases, the loss of professional licences, severely curtailing people’s access to justice.

Criminal defendants faced routine violations of the right to a fair trial and other rights, including denial of access to their lawyers and family, detention beyond legally allowed time frames, and torture and other ill-treatment in detention. The use of torture to extract confessions remained widespread.

Revisions to the Criminal Procedure Law, adopted in March to be effective 1 January 2013, introduced strengthened protections for juvenile criminal suspects and defendants, and those with mental disabilities. However, for the first time, the revisions authorized police to detain suspects for up to six months for certain types of crimes, including “endangering state security”, without notifying the suspect’s family of the location or reasons for detention. The revisions therefore potentially legalized enforced disappearance.

Arbitrary arrests and detentions

Police arbitrarily deprived hundreds of thousands of people of their liberty by placing them in administrative detention, including RTL camps, without recourse to independent courts.

The authorities operated hundreds of places of detention, including “black jails” and Legal Education Training Centres where they held thousands arbitrarily, and where torture, sometimes leading to death, was an established method of “correction” or deterrence.
Annual Report: China 2013 | Amnesty International USA

China does not share our world view and will "pick" which ever power - gives its elites the most power & authority and permits them to extend there hegemony.

China's govt. is simply not bound by law or responsive to its populace.
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Old 08-27-2014, 06:08 PM   #229
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Re: The Obama Years- A GOP love story

And if you think the US/China trade is somehow encouraging China's "progress" towards democracy, I would suggest you are once again reading only that which you wish to believe. China is waging an economic war with the US in good old mercantile fashion ... and is winning.

We have a staggering trade deficit with China in large part b/c the govt. is pegging their currency at a value that undercuts the dollar. It is a trade war in the good old 19th century European fashion but China is the only one fighting it.

Quote:
In 2012, the U.S. trade deficit with China was $315 billion. This was up significantly from the year before, when the trade deficit was $295.4 billion. Both were higher than any prior year.

The trade deficit exists despite the fact that U.S. exports to China were the highest in history. In 2012, the U.S. exported $110.6 billion in goods, an all-time record. Exports in 2011 were only $103.9 billion. However, imports from China also set a record -- $425.6 billion, more than the $399.3 billion imported in 2011.

...

Quite simply, China is able to produce goods that Americans want at the lowest cost. How does China keep prices so low? Most economists agree that China's competitive pricing is a result of two factors:
1.A lower standard of living, which allows companies in China to pay lower wages to workers.
2.An exchange rate that is partially set to be always priced lower than the dollar.
US China Trade Deficit Explanation


Quote:
Currency manipulation is a major cause of the trade deficit

A major cause of the rapidly growing U.S. trade deficit with China is currency manipulation. Unlike other currencies, the Chinese yuan does not fluctuate freely against the dollar.2 Instead, China has tightly pegged its currency to the U.S. dollar at a rate that encourages a large bilateral trade surplus with the United States.

As China’s productivity has soared, its currency should have adjusted, increasing in value to maintain balanced trade. But the yuan has instead remained artificially low as China has aggressively acquired dollars and other foreign exchange reserves to further depress the value of its own currency. (To depress the value of its own currency, a government can sell its own currency and buy government securities such as U.S. Treasury bills, which increases its foreign reserves.) China had to purchase $337 billion in U.S. Treasury bills and other securities between December 2010 and December 2011 alone to maintain the peg to the U.S. dollar (International Monetary Fund 2012a). As of June 30, 2012, China held a total of $3.24 trillion in foreign exchange reserves (Bloomberg News 2012), about 70 percent of which were held in U.S. dollars. This intervention makes the yuan artificially cheap relative to the dollar, effectively subsidizing Chinese exports.
The China toll: Growing U.S. trade deficit with China cost more than 2.7 million jobs between 2001 and 2011, with job losses in every state | Economic Policy Institute

In addition to these currency manipulations, China has no respect for US trademark or patent law. China basically views intellectual property rights as a license to steal. It's a little dated but still a relatively accurate statement of China's views on IPR: World Trade Organization Adopts Panel Report in China - Intellectual Property Rights Dispute | Office of the United States Trade Representative

China is not our friend. China will "choose us" so long as they can manipulate the economic trade war to their benefit.
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Old 08-27-2014, 06:15 PM   #230
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Re: The Obama Years- A GOP love story

All of this is to simply buttress what CRed was saying - this is not a unipolar world anymore. The problem is, the US leadership and its populace have failed to figure that out and, instead, have assumed (under Obama) the western European/US mindset that liberal democracy (little l, little d) is something to which all countries aspire.

I am with CRed on this. In a world where Putin and China are power players, the potential for a huge f*** up leading to global inferno is a much larger threat then the current administration seems to understand.
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Old 08-27-2014, 06:27 PM   #231
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Re: The Obama Years- A GOP love story

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All of this is to simply buttress what CRed was saying - this is not a unipolar world anymore. The problem is, the US leadership and its populace have failed to figure that out and, instead, have assumed (under Obama) the western European/US mindset that liberal democracy (little l, little d) is something to which all countries aspire.

I am with CRed on this. In a world where Putin and China are power players, the potential for a huge f*** up leading to global inferno is a much larger threat then the current administration seems to understand.

Ok ,then what is it the you think should be done ?
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Old 08-27-2014, 08:42 PM   #232
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Re: The Obama Years- A GOP love story

i love 'trade deficit' arguments.
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Old 08-27-2014, 09:03 PM   #233
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If you don't want to argue trade deficits, you should take note of the international attempt of the brics nations to remove the position of the dollar. Russia has taken the ruble back to a gold standard and is talking about only selling oil in rubles. China has enough US Treasury notes to force quite a run if they were to demand repayment instead of floating new loans.

When we as US citizens think of the world we are in some ways similar to Marie Antoinette (or Marie Therese if some accounts are believed) when she uttered her line "Let them eat cake". Meaning we really don't see the world as other countries view it. For example, while I think the ice bucket challenge was for a great cause, I know I saw one tweet of unique pain showing a group doing the ice bucket challenge juxtaposed with a group of African children holding out hands for drops of safe drinking water.
Also, not everyone is striving to follow in the US style of government more than half of the foreign leaders have never considered putting themselves out of a job at the whim of their populace and consider the US style folly.

To reference G1: I would like the leadership of the US to behave like they understand the nature of this world and not like we are all one group hug (or on the other side one new advanced weapon) away from utopia.
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Old 08-27-2014, 10:05 PM   #234
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Re: The Obama Years- A GOP love story

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Originally Posted by tshile View Post
i love 'trade deficit' arguments.
Way to cherry-pick. Of course, it ignores the actual point of my economic argument: China engages in aggressive trade and economic policies to enhance its economic standing and, in doing so, is not interested in “cooperative” trade with the US. Rather, it is conducting old-style mercantilism and accruing ownership interest in US financial instruments through a policy of monetary manipulation. Trade deficits in and of themselves are not necessarily dangerous, but the manner in which they are created may be – and, in the case of China, is.

But, hey, aggressive trading policy is capitalism at its best. China’s trade policies would be fine if the US acknowledged their manipulative monetary and piracy policies in our own economic trade policies and attempted to combat them. We could do that any number of ways - either buy back the interest, find a way to force the Chinese to unpeg the yuan and/or impose retributive import fees to counteract the aggressive Chinese monetary policies. However, since most people – and certainly this administration - seem to think as you do that “Hey, we’re trading with them. It must mean they want to work with us on some level,” such policies stand little chance of being enacted.

Very simply, there has been no:
Quote:
Originally Posted by tshile View Post
significant progress made in relations between us and China in terms of trade and cooperativeness.
China does not engage in “cooperative trade.” It engages in economic warfare including piracy of intellectual property at the drop of a hat.

Explain the basis for you assertion that “significant progress” has been made in US/China relations. Based on everything I have read from govt. and various policy study groups, China has been more combative in its economic policies. Further, in addition to their confrontational economic policies, and in the last 10 years, China has become much more aggressive in asserting their regional military might (i.e. their confrontational stances with both Taiwan and Japan and territorial claims).

And I’m sorry but this statement is completely without merit:

Quote:
Originally Posted by tshile View Post
There are many that view China as a communist-in-name-only country that's on the verge of officially moving into a more democratic state.
Please provide some reliable source materials indicating that China is in anyway approaching “democracy” as that term is defined in the US. It is a one party country that stifles opposing views and strictly controls information access. It is a brutal and repressive regime that brooks no dissent. As I said previously and which you ignored, the Chinese govt. is not bound by the Rule of Law and not responsible for its actions to its populace.

Quote:
The idea that we're constantly on the brink of war with China is one that seems to be about a decade or two out of date.
Are we on the brink of a shooting war with China as we were with the Soviet Union during the cold war when two super powers, who were fundamentally and philosophically diametrically opposed, formed a bipolar world and any perceived imbalance between them - such that one might be able to gain world-wide dominance over the other – threatened cataclysmic confrontation? No. Not even close.

Is our relationship with China, however, one in which the Chinese may mistakenly believe that the US will not aid Japan or (more likely) Taiwan if it were to dangerously encroach on Japan's territorial sovereignty or attempt to "reclaim its lost province" of Formosa and force the US’s hand as Germany did with Britain in WWI and the invasion of Belgium (Unaware of certain secret treaties, the German military elite believed Britain would stay neutral in any continental war)? Or as Germany did in WWII with Britain and France in the invasion of Poland (After they sold out Czechoslovakia, Hitler was convinced that B&F would not declare war over Poland)? Possibly.

Your take on China strikes me as incredibly naïve and far removed from reality. But, hey, show me what you got and I’ll listen.
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Old 08-27-2014, 11:05 PM   #235
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Re: The Obama Years- A GOP love story

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Originally Posted by Chico23231 View Post
its crystal clear to everyone that obama's foreign policy has made this world alot more dangerous place. The instability in the world is directly related to Obama and his staff's policy.


FACT

You cant dispute it.

You mean the same foreign policy they've had for about 50-60 years now?
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Old 08-27-2014, 11:09 PM   #236
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Re: The Obama Years- A GOP love story

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Ok ,then what is it the you think should be done ?
As CRed has stated, first and foremost, acknowledge that the majority of the world does not believe western liberal democracy (again, little l, little d) is the be all and end all of governmental forms. In the trade off between individual freedom and security, the majority of nation-states choose security. Only western European countries and those govts. established or nurtured by them (Japan for example) have bought into the US/European ideal.

Once this is acknowledged, stop playing nice and stop playing policeman. Clearly state our policy interests and, essentially, play the game of real-politik that China and Russia are now doing. In addition to our overwhelming military might, we have considerable economic strength through diverse and global economic alliances and, with it, we can, and should, act to protect our economic interests and partners. Our military should be engaged only to the extent it clearly benefits these economic and national security interests.

Primary among those interests should be the limitation of Putin's attempts to undermine the Ukraine and through the Russian sponsored attacks on that country, undermine our relationship with Germany, the fundamentally strongest and best European partner we have (Where does the majority of Germany's gas come from - hint, from a pipeline running through a country that begins with U and ending in a country that begins with an R). Provide air support wtihin the Ukraine with a promise that any fire upon US planes from outside Ukrainian borders will be returned with overwhelming force (so, Mr. Putin, better make sure none of your tanks are near rebel forces firing at US planes from within your borders).

As to China, publicly reaffirm our alliances with Japan and Taiwan. Park a carrier group or two in their territorial waters and let the Chinese bitch. Then, impose a prohibitive tariff on all Chinese imports until and unless they unpeg the yuan.

In essence, make it clear we are no longer the world's policeman but will, instead, use both our military and economic might to protect clearly defined policy goals. Regardless of what the actual policies may be, clarity and consistency are incredibly important. If you disagree with my proposed policies on China and Russia, fine. I am not wedded to either. Whatever our policy is, however, our line in the sand and the penalty for crossing it must be clear. Lacking the recognition that a line must be drawn and that it must be clear invites the destructive misunderstandings that triggered WWI one hundred years ago.
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Old 08-27-2014, 11:34 PM   #237
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Re: The Obama Years- A GOP love story

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You mean the same foreign policy they've had for about 50-60 years now?
Well, no. Our policy in the 50's 60's and early 70's was a continuation of the Truman Doctrine formed in the bipolar power world with global containment of the Soviet Union's hegemony while expanding our own through the creation of client state governments friendly to us even if they were undemocratic (such as Chile and Iraq) and confronting Soviet client states through our own(S. Korea, Vietnam, Israel) being the primary goal.

In the late 70's Carter repudiated the Real Politik of Kennedy/Johnson/Nixon and made human rights primary in our foreign policy actions.

In the 80's and 90's, the Reagan/Bush Doctrine returned to a policy of containment but with an element of economic confrontation and escalation not previously used in the 50/60/70's era. The confrontation toppled the Soviet Union because it simply could not compete on the economic battlefield.

Clinton. Welcome to the role of the world's policeman. The Balkans, Haiti, the Middle East. Is there a conflict - we'll referee.

Bush II and post 9/11: Bang, bang, shoot, shoot. FU world if you don't like it. We have the biggest stick and we will use it to impose our world view on you!

Obama: <in my best Bill Lumberg voice> Umm, yeah ... we're just gonna, gonna hug it out. Okay? good. Umm, you're going to have to move your tanks out of the Ukraine, Okay? ummmm. Oh, and we're going send some drones all over the place. Okay? ummmm. yeah.

Our foreign policy has changed and morphed over the last 50 years considerably. Quite frankly, it is time to morph again and to recognize the new realities created by the multi-power world we now live in.
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Old 08-28-2014, 05:29 PM   #238
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Re: The Obama Years- A GOP love story

This is the type of statement that I am talking about:

Breaking News ‏@BreakingNews 7m

President Obama says military confrontation between Russia and the US is 'not in the cards'

In a liberal democratic ideal world, this is a tension easing statement. Can't we all just get along, group hug, and group think to solve a problem. That works well for internal US politics, because we have a national history and similar core beliefs that say, Yes, we should not use military confrontation to resolve our issues. (Hence why Ferguson blew up when it looked like the local police were going military - though interesting that national guard troops helped quiet it, but even in that case the national guard was seen as limiting militarized police, in addition to force against the public unrest).

BUT, to put that statement out there for global politics is to tell those who don't share that mentality, that it's ok to carve Ukraine up. We will be very mad and disappointed, but there won't be any "real" consequences. And if you think Putin cares about his people - a) he has a 80% popularity rating (I heard it will be 85% after the next KGB sweep ), b) his response to our sanctions was to take food off his foodstore shelves with his own sanctions.
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Old 08-28-2014, 05:44 PM   #239
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Re: The Obama Years- A GOP love story

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Originally Posted by NC_Skins View Post
You mean the same foreign policy they've had for about 50-60 years now?
No I mean the Obama foreign policy as where he just got on national tv and said his administration haven't got a strategy on Isis yet. He just said that
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Old 08-28-2014, 06:06 PM   #240
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Re: The Obama Years- A GOP love story

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In essence, make it clear we are no longer the world's policeman but will, instead, use both our military and economic might to protect clearly defined policy goals. Regardless of what the actual policies may be, clarity and consistency are incredibly important. If you disagree with my proposed policies on China and Russia, fine. I am not wedded to either. Whatever our policy is, however, our line in the sand and the penalty for crossing it must be clear. Lacking the recognition that a line must be drawn and that it must be clear invites the destructive misunderstandings that triggered WWI one hundred years ago.
So we aren't the Worlds Police (i agree) but then we draw a line in the sand and say cross it and we will fight you , the only way that works is to back it up, sorry nope . The people in this country are tired of fighting wars ,they are tired of sending their Fathers/Mothers and Sons/Daughters off to die in another country to protect a policy .Obama knows this so his options are limited .
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