March 16, 2010

Is the Politiburo smoking weed?

Surprised? No sir, this is not some comment that a random user made at an online forum. This is the question that The Telegraph poses to its readers, in a recently published article entitled – ‘Is China’s Politburo spoiling for a showdown with America?’.

Now, we are all aware of the severe Cold-waresque bias against China in large parts of the Western media, amounting to literally a childlike obsession, but this article really takes the cake.  The author, Ambrose Evans-Pritchard, is in fact the international business editor of the newspaper!
But coming to think of it, in a way it also serves to be a bit of a laugh actually. Nothing beats a taste of good old British comedy. Who knows, we might be witnessing another Mr. Bean or David Brent in the making!

So he opens his act by saying,
“China has succumbed to hubris. It has mistaken the soft diplomacy of Barack Obama for weakness, mistaken the US credit crisis for decline, and mistaken its own mercantilist bubble for ascendancy. There are echoes of Anglo-German spats before the First World War, when Wilhelmine Berlin so badly misjudged the strategic balance of power and over-played its hand.”
“…mistaken its own mercantilist bubble for ascendancy”? Maybe that’s why Wen Jiabao publicly rejected becoming part of a ‘G-2″ with the US. And I’m not even going into the other accusations, including the comparison with pre-WWI Germany.

And then comes the WTF quote of the day:
“Is the Politiburo smoking weed?”
No Comment.

Then, the author goes on to say,
“I let others discuss the rights and wrongs of this…..”
And then promptly goes on to do exactly that, just as before. (The wrongs that is, not the rights)
“In Copenhagen, Wen Jiabao sent an underling to negotiate with Mr Obama in what was intended to be – and taken to be – a humiliation. The US President put his foot down, saying: “I don’t want to mess around with this anymore.” That sums up White House feelings towards China today.”
This just in: Wen Jiabao phoned The Telegraph and told them personally that sending an underling was “intented” to be a humiliation! I guess the author didn’t even stop to consider what the Chinese point of view might be. (BTW, The China Beat has an interesting take here)

“We have talked ourselves into believing that China is already a hyper-power”
Aha! Finally an admission of guilt. Yes folks, there’s a little bit of good in everyone, even The Telegraph!

And as if that wasn’t enough, he also ventures into economics, talking about China's foreign exchange reserves:
“If the Politburo deploys its illusiory power, Washington can pull the plug on China’s export economy instantly by shutting markets.”
Again – No Comment.
It is understandable that some in the western media might be worried about the eventual end of western dominance, but that doesn’t mean that they a) throw journalistic standards out of the window and b) literally start crying like an obstinate bullying child, from whom someone saner is slowly taking the bullying position away.

Need I say anything more? I think the author deserves the full limelight. So, if you are game for some free entertainment, Mr. Pritchard of the Telegraph is at your service.

The Telegraph - Is China's Politburo spoiling for a showdown with America?

(also published on Fool's Mountain)