Xenophobia – or – Why do we hate that China is getting richer?

So I was reading the news a bit today, and I came across this story.  It’s about how the Chinese economy will overtake the US’s by 2016.

Well pardon me but…DUH!

Hello, McFly.  There are 1.5 billion Chinese.  1.5 BILLION.  The fact that their economy isn’t already head and shoulders above ours is a testimony to how backward they’ve been since Mao’s revolution as much as it is to how amazingly vibrant the US’s freer economy has been.

A little history.  The US currently produces 27-28% of the world’s total economic output.  This is important for a couple reasons:

  1. It puts the silliness to the tired guilty white liberal meme about how evil the US is for having 5% of the world’s population but using 25% of the world’s resources.  Forget for a moment that this is patently untrue: the US doesn’t use 25% of ALL resources in the world, just selected ones, like oil.  But the fact that using those 25% we produce 27-28% of all economic activity means we’re returning pretty good bang for the buck.  Go US!
  2. 200 years ago, do you know who was producing 28% of the world’s economic output?  Yep, you guess it: China.

China’s always been an economic powerhouse, except for a brief period started by the British Empire and continued by Mao’s murderous idiocy (and make no mistake, all Socialism/Communism is idiocy.  And murderous, too, for that matter).  But now that they’re starting to pull their heads out of their collective asses and embracing freedom, however slowly, it’s no surprise they’re back on the upswing.

Freedom works every time it’s tried.  You’d think this axiom wouldn’t have to be explained to people.  Ever.  But sadly, we have very powerful forces in this country who seem bound and determined to denigrate the virtues of freedom at every opportunity.  But I digress.

Anyway, it’s only natural that China will become a big economic force.  And India as well, for that matter.  Personally, I think it’s great.  Do you have any idea how many millions of people have lifted themselves out of abject poverty in China over the last twenty years, since they’ve begun to liberalize their economy?  It’s freaking awesome.

Which is why I find the comments section of this story so disturbing.  It’s unbelievable to me how people can be so resentful of others’ good fortune.  And so scared of the “outsider”.  It’s also sad how economically illiterate so many people are, that they think economics is a zero sum game.  If China’s doing better, that means we must be doing worse, right?

No.  That’s not how it works.

When someone, or many someones, become richer, EVERYONE ELSE becomes better off as well.  Economic activity begets more economic activity.  The pie grows, as long as its allowed to by the powers that be.

It shouldn’t surprise me.  One of our two major political parties makes its money, and gets its votes, by appealing to the most base, most ignorant, and most envious nature of people.  And we’ve systematically disassembled economics and civics education in this country.

So now, instead of celebrating our neighbors’ good fortune, whether down the block, across town, or across the sea, we instead try everything we can to either retard their good fortune or to take from them and give to ourselves.

It’s really sad.  Pathetic, actually.