Thursday, June 11, 2009

Short History of the End of the World II (economic history section)

From Beijing, James Fallows lays it out this way.

*China is the world's workshop the way the United States was in the 1920s. So the global recession hits China's export hard (relatively harder than the global recession hit the U.S. in the 'thirties). A hitch in the Chinese economic explosion threatens social and political upheaval. (Done.)

*To avoid that, China takes desperate measures to try to save its export industries -- giving export subsidies, tinkering with the value of the currency, restricting wages, limiting imports -- much as the U.S. did in the 1930s. The rest of the world interprets these actions as dumping and protectionism. ((Largely done.)

* Everyone puts up retaliatory walls, as in the 'thirties. World trade plunges steeply for everyone.... (To do?)
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