I’m very interested in politics. The thing that intrigues me is the political game itself, and the tactics involved. Trying to interpret what really happens, based on history and current motivations. Trying to uncover the strategies and hidden agendas. The power. The high stakes. The alliances. Stuff that goes on behind the curtains. The subtle meaning of what words politicians choose. I closely follow politics on a world level, and my favorite areas are Europe, Asia, Russia, and USA. As a half-Swedish half-American person, it’s a given to even more closely pay attention to stuff that happens in my countries. Especially in this day and age, where the American political situation is such a gold mine of frequent interesting events!
Over the past couple of years, I’ve slowly been forming the sad conclusion that one of my countries is on the slippery slope of losing it’s power in the world. I’m obviously talking about USA here. I do believe that the country is deteriorating in many ways, while it’s strongest competitor (China) seems to be playing the political game very skillfully. In other words: what USA is doing wrong and China is doing right. In this series of posts, I’ll lay the foundations for my argument and what has caused me to draw this conclusion.
I’ll start by saying that I think the power shift has been going on slowly for a long time, but that the current US administration has made a lot of decisions that rapidly has sped up the process. What I see happening is USA taking drastic and unwise decisions in many areas. Desicions that are effectively alienating and isolating the country – and China quickly swooping in to grab the spot and portray itself as a stable, reliable, thoughtful and mature alternative. The first, and maybe most important example, is the environmental policy.
NOBODY can deny that fossil fuel such as oil is a finite resource that is becoming increasingly scarce. To survive and prosper in the future, it is thus a most logic conclusion that a country should do it’s best to abandon coal and oil and focus on sustainable sources of energy. The Obama administration started a very promising step in this direction, which creates millions of new jobs in the rapidly growing and lucrative industry of renewable energy technology. Yet, the current US administration has shifted it’s environmental policy completely and gone back to “the stone age”, as I like to say. We see Trump opening coal mines and giving thumbs up for oil companies to draw pipe lines through land owned by native Americans. He also withdrew USA from the Paris climate accords, which created a power vacuum that the great panda (China) was quick to take advantage of. They stepped in and offered energy alliances, and investing in clean energy tech in other countries. The space left behind by USA was the perfect opportunity for China to start cleaning up it’s reputation as one of the worlds biggest polluters. Mr. Xi Jinping was apparently very aware of this. He made announcements that China would close the coal mines and open 60 new nuclear power plants over the next 10 years. He turned what was one of the biggest negative views of China into a strength – seemingly overnight. Smart smart move. Clean energy tech and environmental investments are becoming one of China’s best ladders to climb on the world power scene, and it has surely increased the popularity of the Chinese government both abroad and at home.