millennial burnout

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K. A. Pital
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Re: millennial burnout

Post by K. A. Pital » 2019-02-13 08:46am

Yes, I think it is true by now. The state is only a vessel of corporate interests.

But “free trade” is only making this more pronounced and giving even more power to corporations over nations, and over people.
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Re: millennial burnout

Post by Civil War Man » 2019-02-13 09:21am

I wasn't commenting regarding that. Merely that it's inaccurate to call it all part of an American empire when America is not really in charge of it.

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Re: millennial burnout

Post by ray245 » 2019-02-13 10:39am

K. A. Pital wrote:
2019-02-13 06:14am
China is a large, independent state which never fully lost its sovereignty to Western masters. It controls its own destiny to a greater degree than most small and/or previously colonized states. China benefited from a particular arrangement in world trade much more than others because of its ability to centrally invest in infrastructure and be a rule-setter, not just a rule-taker vis a vis the US. There were other nations that tried “free trade” on US rules, but just got shafted (Washington consensus, South America, Philippines etc.).
The same system by and large benefited smaller states like the East Asian "tigers" and Japan. They were more aligned with the US, but they were by and large also able to exploit the system for their own benefits. This system also benefited tax-haven places that would have no other way to generate investment otherwise.

Some countries did get shafted under the "free trade" system. But that's irrelevant to my point. The Colonies got just as shafted under the colonial system as well. The main difference is the "free trade" system also undermine and shaft the well-off "centre" as well.

Whereas under the imperial trade system, it is mostly the centre alone that benefited such a trade system.
Yes, I think it is true by now. The state is only a vessel of corporate interests.

But “free trade” is only making this more pronounced and giving even more power to corporations over nations, and over people.
That's the point of free trade. It doesn't serve the benefits of nations, because it is no longer beholden to the state itself. That's what the "free" part is really about. Whereas the old imperial trade system by and large exist to serve the metropole at the expense of the colonies.

Going back to my original point, which is that the old colonial system is not much better than our existing system. What the current free trade system does do is to allow poorer countries to exploit the system for their own benefits, with the right policies in place.

China is just the biggest and most prominent example of a country taking advantage of the existing system for its own benefits. The old imperial system would be mostly about trying to exploit China as a market for western goods, and prevent it from becoming a serious economic rival. Look at how the various powers reacted when Imperial Japan tried to build its own empire in Asia.
Humans are such funny creatures. We are selfish about selflessness, yet we can love something so much that we can hate something.

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Re: millennial burnout

Post by K. A. Pital » 2019-02-13 10:55am

Are you saying that because select few (Asian states with strong bureaucracies) can benefit from the further dismantling of the nation-state, this process should be accepted and the rest of the world should also just submit to corporate rule?

Why? Is there nothing but what I said at the start of the discussion: if nations cannot protect their citizens, then free trade helps them very little?

You think weak nations can game the system? That is wrong. Only China could game it, and it was the second large power in the Second World, basically the USSR‘s younger brother, no weakling for sure.

The weakest and poorest get crushed.
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Re: millennial burnout

Post by ray245 » 2019-02-13 11:21am

K. A. Pital wrote:
2019-02-13 10:55am
Are you saying that because select few (Asian states with strong bureaucracies) can benefit from the further dismantling of the nation-state, this process should be accepted and the rest of the world should also just submit to corporate rule?
I'm not saying we should? I am saying this system is one that actually allow wealth to be transferred from the wealthy to the developing states, in comparison to the system we once had. ( An imperial system that requires other powers to build up their own empires in order to create a large enough trading bloc)

I am saying a closed trading system might not necessarily benefit the poor provinces/countries either, as their entire economic prosperity is dependent on the whims of the metropole.
Why? Is there nothing but what I said at the start of the discussion: if nations cannot protect their citizens, then free trade helps them very little?
I am not denying that? But it does not mean the abolishment of a free trade system will necessarily result in a better world economic system.
You think weak nations can game the system? That is wrong. Only China could game it, and it was the second large power in the Second World, basically the USSR‘s younger brother, no weakling for sure.

The weakest and poorest get crushed.
It is not as if S. Korea, Singapore, Taiwan, and Hong Kong were massive powers when they game the system.
Humans are such funny creatures. We are selfish about selflessness, yet we can love something so much that we can hate something.

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Re: millennial burnout

Post by K. A. Pital » 2019-02-13 11:53am

Hong Kong and Singapore are just cities, enclaves for the transit of capital flows. Hong Kong is like New York or Moscow, a capitalistic transit point sucking out and living on the resources of the rest. Korea and Taiwan were Cold War fronts, favored by the US, and, to add to that, strongly bureaucratic states, as I mentioned.
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Re: millennial burnout

Post by ray245 » 2019-02-13 12:37pm

K. A. Pital wrote:
2019-02-13 11:53am
Hong Kong and Singapore are just cities, enclaves for the transit of capital flows. Hong Kong is like New York or Moscow, a capitalistic transit point sucking out and living on the resources of the rest. Korea and Taiwan were Cold War fronts, favored by the US, and, to add to that, strongly bureaucratic states, as I mentioned.
Singapore and HK were cities where capital and goods flow to and from during the colonial era. But that did not necessarily raise the average wealth of its inhabitants to a comparable level with the metropole.

Korea and Taiwan were US favoured states, but not all US-backed autocratic regimes were automatically able to attract western investments.

Without a system that actively encouraged investors, with their industries and capital to freely go wherever they wanted, would there be a strong incentive to develop underdeveloped regions and countries, unless it was in the interest of the stronger powers to do so?

What sort of alternative system would best enable the development of developing states? The old imperial system certainly didn't.
Humans are such funny creatures. We are selfish about selflessness, yet we can love something so much that we can hate something.

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