The CCP and the Choice Before Us

 

Many on this site may be familiar with the work of Bari Weiss. If not, I cannot encourage you strongly enough to give her a read or a listen. She is doing great work, and I find it incredibly encouraging to know that there are people on the Left (at least, people to the left of me and probably most of the people on this site) who can see the world clearly.

But the reason for this post, my first post on Ricochet after lurking for some eight years on this site, is to encourage everyone to listen to Part 1 and Part 2 of her podcast discussion with Josh Rogin about the threat posed to the world by the criminal enterprise that is the Chinese Communist Party. It is incredibly informative, even if you don’t agree with everything Weiss and Rogin think. This is first-class reporting on the most important issue of our time. I am sure there is a lot here that will be familiar to the members of this site, but there is so much here, I am sure everyone will find something new and informative.

For what it is worth, here are my thoughts after listening to this podcast:

Mankind stumbled, imperfectly, unexpectedly, blessedly, on the implementation of those ideas that we call liberal democracy — the “free world.” The struggle of our grandparents’ time was how the free world would confront the threat of totalitarian fascism — embodied by the Axis powers. In our parents’ time, it was how the free world would confront Leninist-Marxist communism — embodied by the USSR. The struggle of our time is now between the free world and the authoritarianism by which the CCP has oppressed the people within its own borders and which it wants to export to the rest of the world as a counter to the model of freedom and the dignity of the individual that Western democracies have fought so hard for so long to protect and extend.

The CCP’s model of racist authoritarianism (and if you don’t believe it’s racist, ask the Uighurs) cannot long exist side by side with the free world — a world, a way of life, many of us have come to take for granted as our birthright without understanding how unique it is in the history of the world and how fragile it is in the face of human nature. The choice before all of us is whether we and our children will live in a world consisting of an ever-growing set of free and open societies, working cooperatively and led by the example of the U.S. and its allies, or an ever-growing set of repressive, authoritarian regimes led and supported by the CCP.

The stark reality of that choice should inform how we think about the world, how we write and speak about the things we see happening around us, and how we choose — and thank God we have the ability to choose! — how to participate in that struggle and to select our representatives in government.

Published in Foreign Policy
This post was promoted to the Main Feed by a Ricochet Editor at the recommendation of Ricochet members. Like this post? Want to comment? Join Ricochet’s community of conservatives and be part of the conversation. Get your first month free.

There are 8 comments.

Become a member to join the conversation. Or sign in if you're already a member.
  1. Arahant Member
    Arahant
    @Arahant

    Great first conversation starter. Now we’ll expect it of you more often. 🤣

    • #1
  2. Bob Thompson Member
    Bob Thompson
    @BobThompson

    Those who cherish the liberty established by America’s founding must recognize the threat posed by the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) is greater than any we faced previously. It is not just on our doorstep, it is already inside where we live.

    • #2
  3. Bob Thompson Member
    Bob Thompson
    @BobThompson

    When I say that the CCP threat to American constitutional principles of individual liberty is inside where we live what I mean is that our public education system does not teach our youth that the Communist approach to government is antithetical to the concept of individual liberty which means that it is essentially anti-American. I suspect the educational practice is even worse in many parts of our nation even going so far as to teach our youth that Marxism is preferable to our American system of government. Christianity and the traditional family are under relentless attacks by elements within our federal government and many government supported private groups. 

    • #3
  4. TBA Coolidge
    TBA
    @RobtGilsdorf

    There is a school of thought such that ‘boomers’ have all the wealth/top job positions and there is no way for young people to get them* and that CEOs and board members keep all the profits the workers should be getting. 

    This is of course class warfare and you can easily substitute ‘whites’, ‘Jews’, ‘Rothschilds’, ‘WASPs’, or any number of older Those Peoples into the complaint to get much the same thing; they have the good stuff and won’t let us have it. 

    Cain and Sméagol had a solution but it involved getting their hands dirty, and that can have long-term effects. 

    Enter communism. We’ll call it fairness, or sharing, but with the force of law behind it, the fine distinctions will disappear over time. 

    These kids haven’t a clue, and if they don’t get one, they won’t have a prayer. 

    _____________
    *Fact Check: True. Young people pretty much get crap jobs and work their way up – that’s how the boomers got those jobs in the first place, ya dinks! 

    • #4
  5. Gumby Mark (R-Meth Lab of Democracy) Thatcher
    Gumby Mark (R-Meth Lab of Democracy)
    @GumbyMark

    Welcome.  Will give this a listen as I already follow Bari Weiss and Josh Rogin on twitter.  Weiss has been doing some very good work over the past year, particularly in opposition to the Woke craziness.

    China poses a very different problem than the Soviet Union.  The USSR existed outside the global economic system and was economically weak while China is totally integrated within it with a viable economy and is willing to use it to bend countries and companies to its will.  And from a military perspective it appears our military is way behind on understanding what warfare between us and China might actually be like.

    • #5
  6. Jerry Giordano (Arizona Patriot) Member
    Jerry Giordano (Arizona Patriot)
    @ArizonaPatriot

    This is a good and interesting first post, Phil.  I agree about the potential danger posed by China.  I’m familiar with Weiss’s work, and I hope to listen to the podcasts that you linked in the near future.

    I have a concern about this diagnosis of the problem posed by China.  Just yesterday, I posted a long essay on realism, here.

    I probably would have agreed with your post about 10-15 years ago.  I feel that I’ve grown older and wiser, though it’s possible that I’ve grown older and more cynical.  I don’t tend to view geopolitics through a moral lens anymore.  I don’t think that the “domino theory” idea, expressed in your suggestion that the odious ideology of the ChiComs will spread throughout the world, is likely to prove accurate.

    I do think that they have an odious form of government.  I doubt that they’ll be able to export it successfully.  I suspect, rather, that countries will align either with us, or with an increasingly powerful China, on the basis of their interest.  I think that this will have little to do with their particular system of government, and more to do with their assessment of the relative costs and benefits of the alternatives that they face.

    I think that there is a potential problem to the moral approach that you take.  If we’re going to contain China — and I think that we should — we are going to have to do so by forming a coalition of nations to oppose the potential Chinese threat.  Some of those will be the sort of “liberal democracies” that we tend to like, such as Japan and South Korea.  Others will likely be countries with regimes that we like less, such as Russia.  Others will be somewhere in the middle, like India or Pakistan.  (I do think that India is better than Pakistan in its political system, from my point of view.)

    We’ve done this sort of thing many times before.  We continue to have a semi-alliance with Saudi Arabia, which is quite an odious regime in my view, but with which we can deal.  We did it with Stalin’s Russia in WWII, and with Communist China in the 1970s and 1980s, and with the Shah of Iran, and many others.

    I’m concerned that if you over-emphasize the superior morality of our system, you necessarily alienate countries with a different view, even if they can be a useful part of our coalition.  This will make it difficult to create the coalition necessary to confront the Chinese. 

    My view has a problem, too.  It is difficult to sell it to the American public, as people tend to be motivated by idealistic crusades, not by cold and ruthless calculation of interests.

     

    • #6
  7. GlennAmurgis Coolidge
    GlennAmurgis
    @GlennAmurgis

    Giving the CCP most favored nation status in the 90s might be the worst public policy decision in the last 30 years (and there were a lot of horrible ones).  Imagine during the cold war outsourcing the supply chain to the Soviets 

    • #7
  8. Ontheleftcoast Member
    Ontheleftcoast
    @Ontheleftcoast

    Bob Thompson (View Comment):
    I suspect the educational practice is even worse in many parts of our nation even going so far as to teach our youth that Marxism is preferable to our American system of government.

    Case in point from a Sacramento, California area high school:

    BREAKING: Pro-Antifa High School Teacher in California Admits Communist Indoctrination of Students ... ‘I Have 180 Days to Turn Them into Revolutionaries’ … Other Teachers ‘on the Same Page’ … ‘There is a Reason Why These Kids are Becoming Further Left’

    AP history teacher Gabriel Gipe:

    “So, they [students] take an ideology quiz and I put [the results] on the [classroom] wall. Every year, they get further and further left…I’m like, ‘These ideologies are considered extreme, right? Extreme times breed extreme ideologies.’ Right? There is a reason why Generation Z, these kids, are becoming further and further left.”

    “I have an Antifa flag on my [classroom] wall and a student complained about that — he said it made him feel uncomfortable. Well, this [Antifa flag] is meant to make fascists feel uncomfortable, so if you feel uncomfortable, I don’t really know what to tell you. Maybe you shouldn’t be aligning with the values that this [Antifa flag] is antithetical to.”

     

     

     

     

     

    • #8