Longworth points out the hypocrisy inherent in some free trade arguments by pointing to China’s extremely state managed economy and highly protectionist legal system. By the standard arguments, this should have torpedoed them. Yet China has had a three decade run of fabulous growth so far. Even if they crash tomorrow, that’s remarkable. Far from chasing away businesses, even companies they’ve banned like Facebook continue to prostrate themselves before Emperor Xi hoping to get back in, all while delivering sanctimonious lectures to governments back home. And speaking of the tech industry, Longworth saw that China was using its trade discrimination rules to move up the value chain too:Sponsored Ads
[China] has every intention of upgrading its exports from clothing and toys to high-end, high-tech, high-profit goods such as cars, electronics, and pharmaceuticals….and it is using its trade and investment policies to force Western companies to help it achieve this mastery, which it clearly intends to employ to compete with these countries in the future. Western and Japanese companies that want to invest in China are forced to bring in modern technology and teach the Chinese how to use it.
The Primacy of the Nation and Its Social Integrity
In contrast to the pre-Trumpian mainstream thinking of the Clinton-Bush-Obama years, Longworth argued that even if it’s economically inefficient, some type of protectionism was necessary in order for developed country societies to survive China’s entrance into the global trade system intact: