Something which has not been covered very well by American press is a China initiative (including Russia’s participation) called Belt and Road. The term does not mean much in terms of the objectives. It is China’s way of attempting to avoid an economic crisis in the near future.
In concrete terms, the Belt and Road initiative is an immensely ambitious development campaign through which China wants to boost trade and stimulate economic growth across Asia and beyond. It hopes to do so by building massive amounts of infrastructure connecting it to countries around the globe. By some estimates, China plans to pump $150bn into such projects each year. In a report released at the start of this year, ratings agency Fitch said an extraordinary $900bn in projects were planned or underway.
China is struggling to find an economic solution to many problems looming as the world moves to a global economy. The US faces similar issues. Whatever the US faces, multiply the problem by 1000 to understand China’s issues.
Nevertheless, the planet’s occupants are at a crossroads. Too many assets are locked within oligarchic structures where they are of no use to the world’s population. Corporations are sucking dry the profits of an antiquated economy based on labor. Human population continues on its path to 12 billion by 2200. Whatever economic theories carried us through the industrial age and the early technological age, they will not suffice to manage the near future of a global economy. In personal terms, everyone faces a diminished future.
We are dependent on leaders with modern insights, modern ethos, and modern rules of existence. The US cannot face this alone. For the first time, all nations must rise above personal and corporate desire for wealth and create an international government that determines the distribution of assets around the world. Frankly, there are just too many people.
Check out Belt and Road. It is China’s way of confronting the very issue that the US must face but ignores. The current administration sets the US at an extreme disadvantage; time is of the essence.
There are plans for pipelines and a port in Pakistan, bridges in Bangladesh and railways to Russia – all with the aim of creating what China calls a “modern Silk Road” trading route that Beijing believes will kick start “a new era of globalization”.
The mariner grew up in Baltimore; many of his friends and relatives still live there. Edgar Allen Poe is a Baltimore icon. His afterlife is haunted and mysterious aficionados leave gifts. Nevertheless, Edgar is a famous poet in the hall of poets. Mariner need only say, Quoth the Raven, ‘Nevermore.’ He reread “The Raven” with more pleasure than he expected and continued on to “Annabel Lee,” one of mariner’s childhood favorites.
However, Poe has another poem, “Eureka,” his last, discounting Annabel Lee which was published after his death. He focused on the cosmology of the universe and described its behaviors in his own vivid style – including a personality for the Big Bang itself. An interesting and pleasant sidetrack – especially if you like Edgar Allen Poe.