Thomas Friedman On China And America

Tyler Durden's picture

Over the past twenty years, few people have been as discredited in their worldview as New York Times columnist Thomas Friedman. The thorough fall from pedestalized grace of the Pulitzer Prize winner, whose latest book, "The World is Flat: A Brief History of the
21st Century," not at all surprisingly won the inaugural Goldman
/Financial Times Business Book of the Year award, can only be compared to that other New York Times columnist who will go down with the debt-leaking titanic, kicking and screaming, that no matter the impending global default, he is right. And as the premise of globalization goes through its own death rattle, just like the ridiculous Keynesian notion that only more debt can save us from record debt, globalization's biggest advocate is monetizing his last remaining ounces of credibility. Below, we present Fora TV's recently released Asia Society interview with Friedman who discusses at length his view on the parallels and differences between China and the US. Note: absolutely nothing of significance will be learned in this presentation, which is merely a rehash of stale, faulty and thoroughly discredited assumptions yet it is a good starting point to learn about all that is flawed in the prevailing view of how the two countries are supposed to coexist in the future. In other words: take verything Friemdna says and flip it 180 degress, and you will be on the right path.

Below is a representative segment in which Friedman notes how he envies China's Reaganism, not Maoism, whatever that means.

All segments in the full very rambling presentation:

01.    Introduction     01 min 05 sec
02.    Pace of Innovation in China vs. US    04 min 00 sec
03.    The Power of the Autocracy    05 min 33 sec
04.    Big, Hard, and Together    05 min 17 sec
05.    America's Values Breakdown    06 min 31 sec
06.    Yearning to Restore the Nation to Greatness    06 min 11 sec
07.    China As a Galvanizing Force    03 min 43 sec
08.    Influence of Media    04 min 12 sec
09.    What We Should Learn from China    06 min 25 sec
10.    Advice to Secretary Clinton    03 min 09 sec
11.    Demolishing Culture to Advance    07 min 01 sec
12.    What Will Shock the System?    02 min 38 sec
13.    Q1: Overestimating China's Growth    04 min 07 sec
14.    Q2: Political Learning from China    07 min 03 sec
15.    Q3: National Security and Trade    01 min 42 sec
16.    Q4: Broken Political System    06 min 16 sec
17.    Q5: Keeping R&D in US/Nurturing Leadership/Chinese Nobel Laureates    09 min 49 sec

Watch Full Program      01 hr 24 min 42 sec

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High Plains Drifter's picture

But they have found the bones of European man on Indian reservations that are older than any Indian bones, yet we stole the land from the Indians. Hmmm.

Alienated Serf's picture

that a parallel to jews being out of palestine for 5000 years then going back and claiming it as theirs?  otherwise i'd love to read about euro bones older then indian ones.

Alienated Serf's picture

if we didn't steal this country based on presence 9000 years ago, then the jews didn't steal palestine.  i would say we stole america and they stole palestine.  but who cares, don't let the globalists fool you with racial and tribal politics.  keep your eye on the ball and don't be distracted.  you think a good white protestant corporate supremacist wouldn't give your entire family (and thousands of others) cancer with a faulty product to get 1 cent more per share on his options? these scum know no loyalty to anything but money and power, race and country do not interest them.  i am probably wasting my time, but generally you seem like an intelligent guy, so i figured i would throw my two cents in.  

zaknick's picture

I think that guy might be a bit too gone for saving but his basic premise is correct:


dirty joos=juden fetzen!

High Plains Drifter's picture

Well actually there is no corelation between the settling of Amerika and the settling of Palestine by Europeans who are converts to Rabbinical judaism. The question then begs to be asked. What is a jew? You seem to be a intelligent guy. I know I am wasting my time, but maybe a smart guy like you can answer such a infinitesimally sublime question such as this.

The Talmud Kid's picture

Certainly we've all read arthur koestler's "The Thirteenth Tribe", haven't we?

PenGun's picture

 Every square inch on Earth is owned by right of conquest.

midtowng's picture

Why would I want to listen to this asshole?

turds in the punchbowl's picture

people love this doosh - his books are always on the NYT bestsellers list, right up there with 'the secret' and snookie

Traianus Augustus's picture

People don't love this doosh...elites love this doosh.  You could say he is the mouthpiece doosh for the elitist dooshes!!!

turds in the punchbowl's picture

yes they do -- do you forget that people tend to be retards?

Traianus Augustus's picture

Well maybe the ones that never actually read his books.  That awful hit piece on the American worker in the World is Flat became the CEO outsource manifesto and took the failed globalization concept from the 1990's and gave it a second life.  Way to go Friedman you @sshole!!!

Jay Gould Esq.'s picture

Indeed, Trajan, the distinction is duly noted...and an accurate observation.

knukles's picture

Of course his books are always on the NYT bestseller list.  Because that's who the fuck he writes for and the audience of readership is so strugglingly, incompetently small and inbred that it's the same old shit they all read and spout to one another trying to sound erudite.  Kinda.
Insufferable pretentious insular ego-maniacal trained monkeys.

Buncha arrognat elitist wannabe unintellectual racist pretentious inarticulate miserable unethical people.  To paraphrase Goldwater; We'd all be a whole fucking lot better off if New York City was sawn off America and sunk somewhere around the Cape of No Hope. 


Although, gotta admit, the food is awesome.

blunderdog's picture

This guy's really just not at all smart.  That wouldn't bug me a bit if he were a good writer, but he's not that either.

I like the idea that you can become a nationally famous pundit just by spewing nonsense metaphors, though.  Maybe there's hope I'll get rich yet.

"Um, see, the most critical dilemma facing our economic recovery today is whether our bathwater may not be nominally more valuable than our babies.  Chinese consumers are waiting for us in the woodshed with their eyes on our own power tools, and when we eventually catch up, it will be solely even money on who takes the first fall."

SayTabserb's picture

If you take his pimping for the Iraq invasion (because he really wanted an Arab country, any Arab country, invaded, as he told Charlie Rose) and add to it his cheerleading for sending American jobs to Bangalore and other places where he's learned the truth by talking to cab drivers, who tell him the call center people helping you with your Dell Computer problems will soon be buying all our could reasonably reach the conclusion that this Fat, Short and Clouded windbag is the most destructive American of the last 10 or 15 years.

SayTabserb's picture

If you take his pimping for the Iraq invasion (because he really wanted an Arab country, any Arab country, invaded, as he told Charlie Rose) and add to it his cheerleading for sending American jobs to Bangalore and other places where he's learned the truth by talking to cab drivers, who tell him the call center people helping you with your Dell Computer problems will soon be buying all our could reasonably reach the conclusion that this Fat, Short and Clouded windbag is the most destructive American of the last 10 or 15 years.

Jasper M's picture

Wow, this guy gets a lot of stuff wrong. 180º, as the intro warns. Not unlike a certain other someone's 'kicking and screaming' predictions for oil, gold, and especially silver.

(Oops, did I say that? BAD Zero Hedger, no cookie!)

Rodent Freikorps's picture

Anti-semetic comments stay and mine gets removed? Nice.

blunderdog's picture

Have you ever read that link?

David449420's picture

No, I think he did not read the link, at all. Wikipedia states in their article ...

The term "anti-Semitic" (or "anti-Semite") overwhelmingly refers to Jews only. It was coined in 1879 by German journalist Wilhelm Marr in a pamphlet called, "The Victory of Germandom over Jewry". Using ideas of race and nationalism, Marr argued that Jews had become the first major power in the West. He accused them of being liberals, a people without roots who had Judaized Germans beyond salvation. In 1879 Marr founded the "League for Anti-Semitism".[2]

I am no more anti-Jewish than I am anti-christian or anti-moslem.  (Well, maybe anti-bankster) All religions; All a joke.  Because we see religion as a poor quality joke does not necessarily make us anti anything.

As for the Dweeb that this article is about.  It really doesn't matter what his affiliation is to.

I'm astonished that he had such a pro-establishment ra-ra mentality that he can present this material with a straight face. You have to question the intelligence of anyone so caught up that they can deliver this nonsense as if they actually believe it.


Dr. Porkchop's picture

Why does anybody listen to this twat?

ivars's picture

Politically, to solve growing delayed problems , if China moves to the left, the USA will move to the right, and if the USA will move to the right, China will move to the left.

That USA could move to the left and China to the right, seems impossible to me, given the effect of Chinas current "right" policies on inflation and most poor masses, the support base of the communist party. These two things are incompatible, the communist party staying at power, building its military muscle and erosion of support in >900 million poor people.

So China to the left, the USA to the right, both rather radically. Who first?

The double dip in the USA may come as early as Q1 2012. That would give ground for right to claim left and the Republican House has messed it up totally, so 2012 will be won by Tea party.

China, seeing double dip in the USA, will move to grab the opportunity and expand its power, which means consolidation of CCP power and militarization on the expense of current capitalist economic growth engine. So, in 2012 Party reshuffle nationalization and militarization plus reduction of income inequality will win, removing middle class from equation.

With China moving to the left and double dip Palin will grab the Presidents post and have Tea Party soon officially running the Congress and, may be, also Senate.

That will lead to further leftism in China on ideological basis, confirmed in spring 2013 National congress.

The basis for increasing confrontation with Chinese seeking to gain benefits on opportunities economically weak and politically divided USA ( the left will radicalize in the USA as a reaction to the Tea Party win) will be set, and America will be fighting back.

That all on the background of rising commodity prices in all paper currencies, including USD. So the volatile inflation component will become permanent,and , by usual logic, monetary easing must stop while the USA is in recession during 2012-2013.

Does anyone see a simple solution of this equation?

blunderdog's picture

So is the "right-wing" Tea Party going to win by promising cuts to SS, Medicare, and the military, or by promising to increase taxes to pay the bills?

Or will they just dispense with any sort of political platform and go with a charismatic leader, you think?

ivars's picture

It would be populist, so give what the majority of the "right" population wants. Scalps of, jailed bankers- sure. Taxes on big oil companies- welcome. Heavily Regulated banking- why not. Protestant work ethic- to be enforced. Tax heavens closed -they are only needed for elites anyway. Self responsibility- propaganded as biggest character gift. Borders secured- sure.

I am not fully aware of SS, Medicare problems the USA has accumulated but I understand no one has a solution. Family takes more responsibility  for the relatives, for example. Increased birth rate, subsidies to people having children and family. Profiling of people. Some discrimination. Less democracy, more efficiency as country will be in crisis state.

There will be no cuts for military, instead, military industries will thrive as opposition to lost economic and ideological superiority. There will be followers, of course.

Charizmatic leader is a must. Populism thrives on that. Elites, lobbying, earmarks etc.  will be dismantled rather forcefully. Consolidation of power based on some new ( not historically) ideology-competition drives development, individuals sponsor ( support) those who can not compete ( but not those who would not).

I mean, given internal economic and external geopolitical threats, for the second (or third, if we count 1776)  time there has to be a fundamental transformation of how things are done in the USA, what are the values.

Almost a revolution, but little subtler than in previous cases because of information proliferation. Things take longer time as there is a lot of buzz after every action. But, in a country in a deep crisis, unfortunately, no change means defeat.  Defeat of the Western civilization (from Chinese and their copycats)  I  do not see for at least another 50 years, and during that time, alternative solutions may appear as further confrontation brings in notion of WWIII with casualties closer to billions than millions. That is of course one solution to Earth carrying capacity and overconsumption by hyperexponential growth of population and consumtion per capita, but may be there are others.

Lack of population in the West is a major concern to be adressed, so is income gap between the West and the rest.

Anyway, different set of values, I guess, is the most important thing. Less government distribution of money, more direct charity. Less focus on what pleases and what are my rights as opposed to what are my duties. Changes in Goverment promised pensions if they are in any sense superior to private sector ( I do not know).

I bet they will come up with own economic ideas. E.g. liquidate the fed, regulate banks like utilities as transaction faciliators, not bubble creators.

Something like in Germany after 1929, but different. May be not so insane, more rational - though who knows how it may develop when society radicalizes and splits into parts of all kinds- ideology, religion, race,special minorities , may be more subbtle differences rather than the old antagonisms.

But.. the todays USA is the Germany of 1930, and todays China is the Soviet Union of 1930, while todays Germany or rather Europe in general might be the USA of 1930-suffering, but not directly involved nor willing to get involved in the USA-China grandstand.

Russia of today may be the first firm ally of such USA. Because China is the biggest current threat to Russias resource base in Siberia and Central Asia.And Japan. South Korea and Taiwan can be considered lost.




blunderdog's picture

SS/Medicare are about 40% of the Federal budget.  That's a big issue, and what I see as the primary reason the "Tea Party" (it's really not much of a party) can't hope to achieve anything.

If the Tea Party is actually committed to reducing spending, that means take most of the money from the tens of millions of older folks currently depending on the Feds for medical care...or survival AND medical care.  Means-testing these programs is associated with socialism, which isn't a favored term by many self-described Tea Partiers.

The Tea Party movement demographic tends to skew a bit older and more affluent, which means generally favoring tax cut policy rather than aggressive increases on the wealthy.  Big business taxation is notoriously difficult to enforce, but even if it were enforced, costs of products would likely be increased to compensate.

The problem with the Tea Party is it isn't a "party," and its goals and agenda are all self-contradictory.  If it goes anywhere, it'll just end up being our own violent totalitarian regime. 

People want simple solutions, but there aren't simple solutions when the problems are too big and too complex.  It's basically time to trash the global economic system and float a new currency, but I don't hear the Tea Partiers promoting that ideal.

ivars's picture

One solution would be to make voting rights symmetrical, 0-18 do not vote, above 80-18=62 years do not vote.

Not sure that is what tea party is about, but they do not really want to put too much responsibilty into Goevernment hands anyway, so they could try to solve SS by putting it on States instead.

Dr. Porkchop's picture

The problem with SS is that it's pretty popular with the old folk, who do most of the voting. Now the baby boomers are getting ready to start retiring en masse, another big demographic. SS is going to be a hard one to cut.

ivars's picture

You only need few more votes than the other side, provided that the other side owns a second dip. Voting for 2012 should not be a problem. After that, once out of 2013 recession, in 2014 things will move up- who will dare to change the regime? Perhaps state bankruptcies will also begin before 2012 elections? So that old folk will feel threatened already before 2012?

A double dip means approx 4% contraction of the economy in 2012 relative to 2011, and 0 growth in 2013. How would states cope? What will happen to unemployment and possibilities to grow the army cheaply? Or get work force for fast Intra USA oil/gas supply development? Both of these should be profitable investments.

Also, in 2014 there still might be American military action to alleviate internal problems by securing more oil and maybe driving the price down, at least stabilizing it. If Iran gets close to nuke, there is nothing that will stop the Tea Party from acting there, using the opposition or Israel. The whole Iraq-Iran-Afganistan-Pakistan-Central Asia region is one big resource base. You only need one strong ally - probably Russia- to take advantage of Irans miscalculations of grandeur.


nmewn's picture

Revise the law that on the following year after enactment anyone who turns eighteen will not have SS taxes confiscated from their check.

Those who are eighteen through thirty nine only pay half of what they pay in now. Forty to retirement is opt in/out.

Let it die.

Anyone see a problem with this?

ivars's picture

No, children should take care of their parents. That will also solve the birth number problem as children will become Your pension quarantee.

nmewn's picture


But for those without children (I'm not heartless) something can be arranged.

The banks can give them some of their muni bond portfolio ;-)

New_Meat's picture


"The banks can give them some of their muni bond portfolio ;-)"

Young skull full of mush and I are investigating who is insuring certain munis, watching for shorting ops.

We're with Whitney vs. Levitt and all of the muni apologists.

- Ned

OT: you cracka's never (you hope) get to use such cool tools as these ;-)

spent the day raking 1837, 1812, and a neighbors 1888 houses.  don'tcha know.


nmewn's picture

"Young skull full of mush and I are investigating who is insuring certain munis, watching for shorting ops."

Lemme know what you come up with...they can't/won't be able to print their way out of this one...the butchers special has turned from fillet mignon' to hamburger, they will throw every employee they have over the side to save themselves.

"you cracka's never (you hope) get to use such cool tools as these..."

Shit no bro, that's one reason I gotta 12:1 pitch on my roof...not for snow, but for the damn carbon units falling outta the trees twice a year...LOL...but ya never know, when Gore or Cramer get behind something it's the contraiest of contrary indicators...probably a damn Ice Age comin ;-)

ivars's picture

Not good:) . They should adopt children (there are always some unfortunate) early and raise them to the standard of morality that will ensure also these children care about these parents and ensure their good and happy life in old days. Little extra effort.


Oh, by the way, one can put voting age limit. You start voting at 18, end at (average life length-18) , so around 62. or 70. That would help, I guess, to remove voting bias that favors old people.




nmewn's picture

Adoptions good...the red tape is horrendous, looked into it awhile back.

Man...don't get me started with voting can vote and shoot for your country at 18 but you can't do a shot.

It's almost like they set it up to piss young people off...don't do well in school we'll fuck with your ability to have a drivers license so you can't get a's endless with them screwin with young people.

My personal opinion...if you are a ward of the state you don't get a say at the ballot box. It's the same as a beggar cutting out having to stand out in the hot sun at the intersection begging for money and instead just collecting it inside the air conditioned DL office and calling it efficient government...LOL.

ivars's picture

Also good idea. Those on taxpayer paychecks do not vote. That should reduce their pension benefits etc.


But that would not solve the birth rate problem. Limiting voting age to 70 years would.

chet's picture

Friedman explains things that the business world understood ten years earlier to old people.  And he still gets it wrong.

creviceCaress's picture

i liked that. 

....uh, anybody know how we can speed this up?


anybody wanna peanut?

Dick Buttkiss's picture

Thomas Friedman (spoken or written) is like watching an endless replay of Arthur Laffer vs. Peter Schiff. Without Peter Schiff:

Spalding_Smailes's picture

Jim Chanos - About China -


Hendry Says World May Make `Error of Judgement' on China


Michael Aronstein Says Emerging Currencies in `Bubble'


Cap's picture

Hey, Skylocracy and Gigliola Cinquetti, go peddle your anti-semitic, anti-israel, anti-zionism conspiracy theories and blather elsewhere you morons.   


Why is it that ZH attracts so many ignorant skinheads like yourselves ?  Can't you find a good hate site to hang out on ?


Make sure you ask your Jewish friends where and when the next Elders of Zion secret meeting is being held.



Sudden Debt's picture

Because 99% of the world population hate Jews.


So that's also why you'll meet them everywhere.


ps: Did I already tell you I spit on them to? :)

Die Weiße Rose's picture

Hey, Sudden Debt stop posting when you're drunk

Jewish people are brilliant beautiful and talented.

Think of Albert Einstein,Barbara Streisand,Leonard Bernstein

and too many to mention here...

If you are drunk,go to bed!

Don't post racist ignorant bullshit on the net,

hiding behind some dead beat racist avatar bullshit,

advertising your stupidity to the whole world.

1223pm's picture

"Jewish people are brilliant beautiful and talented"

No doubt about that, but they are like leaches sucking American blood.

Cap's picture

Hey, Skylocracy and Gigliola Cinquetti, go peddle your anti-semitic, anti-israel, anti-zionism conspiracy theories and blather elsewhere you morons.   


Why is it that ZH attracts so many ignorant skinheads like yourselves ?  Can't you find a good hate site to hang out on ?


Make sure you ask your Jewish friends where and when the next Elders of Zion secret meeting is being held.



Hephasteus's picture

Wow they just air drop out of a c-130 galaxy dns portal.

I get the feeling jews may be big brothering people.