The Spectacle Blog

Andy Stern Hearts Communism

By on 12.1.11 | 11:08AM

Today the Wall Street Journal published a piece by SEIU president Andy Stern praising China's economic model. Stern doesn't come right out and say it, but he certainly implies in every way that China's communist system works better than America's free market one: 

Some Americans are drawing lessons from this. Last month, the China Daily quoted Orville Schell, who directs the Center on U.S.-China Relations at the Asia Society, as saying: "I think we have come to realize the ability to plan is exactly what is missing in America." The article also noted that Robert Engle, who won a Nobel Prize in 2003 for economics, has said that while China is making five-year plans for the next generation, Americans are planning only for the next election.

...

The current debates about China's currency, the trade imbalance, our debt and China's excessive use of pirated American intellectual property are evidence that the Global Revolution-coupled with Deng Xiaoping's government-led, growth-oriented reforms-has created the planet's second-largest economy. It's on a clear trajectory to knock America off its perch by 2025.

...

The conservative-preferred, free-market fundamentalist, shareholder-only model-so successful in the 20th century-is being thrown onto the trash heap of history in the 21st century...

This should motivate leaders to rethink, rather than double down on an empirically failing free-market extremism. As painful and humbling as it may be, America needs to do what a once-dominant business or sports team would do when the tide turns: study the ingredients of its competitors' success.

Of course the claim that China is somehow more successful than the U.S. is simply laughable, and the fearmongering about China "knocking the U.S. off its perch" is ugly. But what's really chilling is that Stern thinks that China's laws regulating the economy can be separated from all its other laws regulating human rights, free speech, freedom of religion, etc. I wonder what a persecuted Chinese Christian or a Chinese woman who suffered a forced abortion would think upon seeing this article.

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