JOHN CHUCKMAN COMMENT: THE CORONAVIRUS PANDEMIC AND ITS POSSIBLE INFLUENCE ON THE FUTURE OF GLOBAL TRADE   Leave a comment

John Chuckman

COMMENT POSTED TO AN ARTICLE BY PAUL CRAIG ROBERTS

 

My Take on Covid-19 “Conspiracy Theories”

 

I agree with Mr. Robert’s early sentiments in this piece.

But I do not think the statement below in any way follows, nor do I agree with it:

“The neoliberal globalism of recent decades has left the United States and Europe extremely vulnerable. We must not contribute to making this vulnerability worse, and we must replace neoliberal globalism with a less dysfunctional system at the earliest opportunity.”

Global trade and arrangements have enriched the lives of countless millions over recent decades. That includes Americans, who get excellent products at prices which fit their budgets, to tens of millions in Asia who have come out of poverty. And countless new business opportunities have arisen in many places.

It has been a rather glorious human achievement.

In light of disease, new precautionary measures need to be taken for the future, but these measures need to be global. Under global organization, we can have everything from an early warning system to best practices for all and immediate coordination. That is the proper way for the future.

The results of Trump’s style of thinking about anything are illustrated in the America’s present 1,200 Coronavirus deaths per day. It could have been prevented to a large degree. Look at the examples of Germany, Russia, and China.

While I expect adjustment problems in global trade for a time, the economic arguments overall for it are immensely powerful. Arguing against globalism much resembles the Luddites in the Industrial Revolution arguing against and destroying machines. The machines just kept coming, and Luddites soon were largely forgotten.

Unfortunately, Luddite thinking about many matters is precisely the level of Donald Trump’s thinking, the most uninformed and stubborn man ever to be president.

It seems absolutely parochial to me to argue against global trade because of a disease outbreak.

Trade between various places inside a country had such events in the past countless times. No one advocated an end to the trade between points east and points west inside the US because of an outbreak of, say smallpox. We do need better preparedness, but it is needed on a global basis.

Of course, if America chooses to disengage, China stands ready and willing to take its place. The Belt and Road Initiative is well along. It is inherently international in character, preparing a peaceful path for China’s coming world economic dominance. And China’s now close friend, Russia, with its Northern Route Initiatives and new Eurasian emphasis, will enhance and complement developments.

Posted April 19, 2020 by JOHN CHUCKMAN in Uncategorized

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