What could be scarier than the rise of a regional hegemon? Right? It conjures up an image of a giant Transformer, one who is going on the march and stomping through smaller nearby nations and imposing its will on them. Scary!
That’s the situation with China. While President Trump’s trade war that he has initiated with China gets most of the focus, the U.S. government’s aim with China goes much further than that. It goes to China’s rise as a regional hegemon, something that U.S. officials are always on the lookout for and that they will smash out of existence before the regional hegemon can become a global hegemon.
Of course, this is all empire-speak but that’s the way it is with empires. The big empire cannot afford a smaller nation get too powerful because then it would be able to compete against the big empire.
Ever since the end of the Cold War, the U.S. Empire, which viewed itself as the “indispensable regime” and the “world’s sole remaining superpower,” has engaged in actions designed to impose its will on foreign governments. These actions have consisted of invasions, occupations, coups, embargoes, sanctions, assassination, torture, secret surveillance, and alliances with dictatorial regimes.
Throughout that time, China was lifting much of its controls over economic activity within the nation, which resulted in tremendous economic prosperity among the citizenry. That prosperity naturally brought into the government large amounts of tax revenue, which enabled the Chinese government not only to build up its military but also to extend a hand of friendship around the world through loans or grants to foreign regimes and construction of large public-works projects in foreign countries.
U.S. officials felt they had to act. That was what the so-call pivot toward China was all about — to do whatever was necessary to bring China down a notch, weakening it economically and perhaps even militarily so that its role as a regional hegemon would be brought to a close. The goal is to turn China back into a poor Third World nation that knows its proper role in the world, one that would mean, once again, that China would be subservient and deferential to the U.S. worldwide empire.
That’s when the Empire’s assets in the mainstream press began describing China in empire-speak: China was becoming “assertive” and “aggressive.” China had become an “adversary,” an “opponent,” a “rival,” and maybe even an “enemy.” Classic empire-speak.
The best way to weaken China would be through a trade war, one that would cause a massive economic recession within China and thereby weaken or even end its role as a regional hegemon. Sure, American citizens would get hurt too but that’s just the price of a foreign policy based on empire and intervention. A few American bankruptcies and higher taxes being paid by Americans would be a small price to pay to maintain the U.S. Empire’s dominate role in the world.
It’s all part and parcel of a foreign policy based on empire and intervention as well as a governmental structure known as a national-security state. Impose the will of the empire on foreign regimes through force of arms while, at the same time, prevent the rise of regional hegemons that could become global hegemons.
The opposite type of system is one that celebrates economic success in foreign nations, one that doesn’t look upon foreign regimes as rivals, adversaries, opponents, or enemies, one that isn’t concerned about the rise of regional hegemons.
This opposite type of system would dismantle the national-security state governmental structure, leaving a limited-government republic in its place. It would also restore America’s founding foreign policy of non-interventionism, a foreign policy that guided the United States for more than 100 years.
This opposite type of system liberates the American people to travel freely anywhere they want and enter into trades with anyone they want anywhere in the world. It is a system that is free of sanctions, embargoes, tariffs, trade restrictions, and trade wars.
This opposite type of system is based on the private sector being free to establish mutually beneficial relationships with people all over the world, a system in which the federal government, including the president, plays no role at all.
This opposite type of system that nurtures friendships and mutual harmony among people. It increases prosperity for people everywhere.
The choice is clear: Empire, interventionism, and national-security statism versus economic liberty, a limited-government republic, and a foreign policy of non-interventionism. If one likes the forever wars, conflicts, trade wars, sanctions, embargoes, and travel restrictions, stick with the former. If one would prefer peace, prosperity, and harmony, join up with us libertarians to help us achieve the latter.