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Author Topic: China: regional or global power?  (Read 1314 times)

Calach Pfeffer

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China: regional or global power?
« on: June 12, 2016, 12:53:41 AM »
Regional, for sure. China has power and influence within the region. The news is full of China's screwing around with East and South Asia. But globally?

Quoth wikipedia:

In international relations, a middle power is a sovereign state that is not a superpower nor a great power, but still has large or moderate influence and international recognition.

A great power is a sovereign state that is recognized as having the ability and expertise to exert its influence on a global scale.

Superpower is a word used to describe a state with a dominant position in international relations and which is characterised by its unparalleled ability to exert influence or project power on a global scale.


By those definitions, my instinct is to say China isn't even a middle power. Because what moderate to large influence does China have on international affairs? If international affairs "comprehends globalization, diplomatic relations, state sovereignty, international security, ecological sustainability, nuclear proliferation, nationalism, economic development, global finance, as well as terrorism and organized crime, human security, foreign interventionism, and human rights, as well, as, more recently, comparative religion," then China is a leading cock blocker, but beyond getting in the way, what does China actively do?
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Calach Pfeffer

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Re: China: regional or global power?
« Reply #1 on: June 12, 2016, 04:05:05 AM »
For instance, the US has given us all Thanksgiving; the UK's Bank holiday isn't widely known much less celebrated; and China's contribution? The Sunmonday. Will it catch on? Will we see Satfridays on international business schedules? Will the lesser known Satthursdays disappear? Will this "soft power" ever truly exist?
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Escaped Lunatic

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Re: China: regional or global power?
« Reply #2 on: June 13, 2016, 03:24:27 AM »
Let's all hope that the mutant weekend plan is shelved before any other country gets that bright idea.

On the other hand, Chinese New Year gets more global attention than Cinco de Mayo.  If we equate global acknowledgement of holidays with this scale, that puts China into the Superpower category and puts Mexico into the great power category (along with Ireland for St Patrick's Day).

On the other hand, if we're looking at items beyond the UK's failure to spread the festivities of Guy Fawkes Day, there are some other ways to measure a nation's power and influence.

Economically, I'd say the US, China, and EU all qualify as superpowers.  In terms of foreign aid, China has been doing more and more in Africa.  This, combined with heavy investments and trade deals shows that China is expanding it's influence beyond SE Asia.

Then there's the military.  China trimmed its total number of military personnel, but the modernization pushes the country into the the great power category with Superpower easily achievable in the not too distant future.  Watch how fast they expand their blue water navy.

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Calach Pfeffer

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Re: China: regional or global power?
« Reply #3 on: June 13, 2016, 05:27:17 AM »
Let's all hope that the mutant weekend plan is shelved before any other country gets that bright idea.

On the other hand, Chinese New Year gets more global attention than Cinco de Mayo.  If we equate global acknowledgement of holidays with this scale, that puts China into the Superpower category and puts Mexico into the great power category (along with Ireland for St Patrick's Day).

On the other hand, if we're looking at items beyond the UK's failure to spread the festivities of Guy Fawkes Day, there are some other ways to measure a nation's power and influence.

Economically, I'd say the US, China, and EU all qualify as superpowers.  In terms of foreign aid, China has been doing more and more in Africa.  This, combined with heavy investments and trade deals shows that China is expanding it's influence beyond SE Asia.

Then there's the military.  China trimmed its total number of military personnel, but the modernization pushes the country into the the great power category with Superpower easily achievable in the not too distant future.  Watch how fast they expand their blue water navy.

Pffft.

Embodying aspects of a superpower does not a superpower make. China is economically consequential and (to a much lesser extent) militarily loaded out, but as a culture and a world presence they are so alienating and so consumed by issues of so little relevance to anyone else that bah humbug! If the faltering baby steps China as a nation has been making into world affairs are somehow to be considered substantial.... well, I don't even. Doesn't "superpower" indicate some degree of maturity?

Actually, maybe not. The USSR was a "superpower". The USA remains a superpower but if the storied conception currently out and about of what makes the USA a superpower is right, then "superpower" means about the same as Death Star. (See for instance, Eye in the Sky, a current movie.) Except the USA has something more than technological marvels. They have actual soft power, which is to say, the USA is attractive. It's a place to aspire to, and not just for wealth and toys. But who calls China attractive? Africans next door to civil war do. Do, say, Syrians too?

China is a middle power, at best. The nation is consequential. And their true outlook is regional. I would really like some numbers to balance this view because I'm mostly working off news impressions rather than any measured totality.
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Escaped Lunatic

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Re: China: regional or global power?
« Reply #4 on: June 14, 2016, 02:12:49 AM »
Cultural presence?  Find the most remote redneck town in the USA and guess what kind of restaurant will be in the same strip mall as the only grocery store in town?
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Calach Pfeffer

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Re: China: regional or global power?
« Reply #5 on: June 15, 2016, 12:49:02 AM »
Cultural presence?  Find the most remote redneck town in the USA and guess what kind of restaurant will be in the same strip mall as the only grocery store in town?

An American restaurant in which Hong Kong cuisine has so long since been altered to suit US mass consumption a Chinese wouldn't eat it?
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Calach Pfeffer

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Re: China: regional or global power?
« Reply #6 on: June 15, 2016, 12:50:57 AM »
I think these questions are better considered in terms of the legitimate political lexicon.

Thus, where the USA is either Batman or Superman, China is....?
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Escaped Lunatic

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Re: China: regional or global power?
« Reply #7 on: June 19, 2016, 03:35:56 AM »
Cultural presence?  Find the most remote redneck town in the USA and guess what kind of restaurant will be in the same strip mall as the only grocery store in town?

An American restaurant in which Hong Kong cuisine has so long since been altered to suit US mass consumption a Chinese wouldn't eat it?

Not really.  Although the food has been adapted, my wife, daughter, and inlaws actually did like much of the food in the common hole-in-the-wall type restaurants.

I think these questions are better considered in terms of the legitimate political lexicon.

Thus, where the USA is either Batman or Superman, China is....?

The US thinks it's Batman or Superman, but acts more like Kick Ass - well intentioned, but often inept at dealing with weird situations.

China's still choosing a role for the international stage.  I hope Lei Feng is picked as the model.
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Calach Pfeffer

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Re: China: regional or global power?
« Reply #8 on: June 19, 2016, 04:46:21 AM »
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Escaped Lunatic

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Re: China: regional or global power?
« Reply #9 on: June 20, 2016, 02:23:06 AM »
I really need to get that on a t-shirt!
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fishead

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Re: China: regional or global power?
« Reply #10 on: November 17, 2016, 03:43:01 AM »
 China has a reputation of backing up tyrants. They fought alongside the North Koreans against the United Nations and prevented the reunification of Korea. At the time the US wanted to drop a nuclear bomb on China.  Shortly after this Richard Nixon made peace with Mao . They also supplied arms to the North Vietnamese. When they fell out of favor with Russia. The Russians supported the Vietnamese. So the Chinese supported the Pol Pot government in Cambodia.  Pol Pot became paranoid and attacked Cambodia. This resulted in the Vietnamese attacking and toppling the Pol Pot government. This infuriated the Chinese who attacked the Northern part of Vietnam and got their ass kicked and limped back to China.