The Flinchum File

Thoughtful Economic Analysis and Existential Opinions
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Checking on China

Last year, I made my second visit to China.  Readers will recall my interest in the very different cultural attitude toward disagreement.  We think it is shameful for a person to suffer-in-silence.  They think it is shameful for a person to disagree-in-public.

The greatest fear of the Chinese government is not the U.S. Their greatest fear is civil unrest.  Considering the vast numbers of people they must placate, you can understand why the government is quickly ramping up their entitlement programs.

Imagine their horror that a small coastal village is now in open revolt.  It seems like an opposition leader who was arrested and allegedly suffered a heart attack in jail also had three fractures in his skull.  The military has surrounded the town, cutting off both food and water.  They have vowed to “strike hard” against the villagers, and I believe they will.

As the economic growth engine of the world has slowed, unrest among the Chinese people has increased.  This is the worst fear of the government.  They just delayed the new capital requirements for banks, in order to keep the money flowing.  They are now less likely to their currency appreciate, as they have in past two years.

Freedom is a scary thing, indeed!