A Gap Analysis on South China Sea Tension & Global Governance Alignment
By JC Collins
While some media reports this week were promoting a developing trade war between China and the United States, along with growing tension in the South China Sea, representatives from both nations were meeting in Beijing at the Economic Track of the US-China Strategic and Economic Dialogue.
US Treasury Secretary Jacob Lew and Chinese Vice Premier Wang Yang led discussions on strengthening economic policy cooperation, promoting open trade and investment, fostering financial stability reform, and enhancing global cooperation and global governance.
The diametric of the above statements represent the wide gap between the complex nature of international negotiations and what is communicated through the regular cultural information channels. Short of producing an intricate and time-consuming gap analysis report on this diametric, we are left with little recourse but to put our faith in our chosen sources of information.
With that being stated, it is worth taking the time to read and absorb the official transcripts and working papers which are produced from these meetings and international institutions. The approach is one of seeking to be entertained or wanting to be knowledgeable.
Most media outlets and sources are providing a form of entertainment which is masquerading as the official scribe of modern times. This entertainment is a source of revenue for those corporations which invest in media companies. It is important that we do not envision a divide between news and entertainment, when no such divide in fact exists.
The blame for such a situation does not solely lie at the feet of the corporations themselves. The slow degradation of available information has been a response of the media investor. This response is focused on capturing more market-share and realizing a return on investment. The strategy considers the target demographics and the level of interest in specific methods of information induction.
It can be argued that government and media are intentionally “dumbing down” our education and sources of information, but it is also equally as probable that people have become more lethargic and entitled with the privileges of the modern world.
It would be my conclusion that a twisted relationship between both is in fact taking place – a spiral of human deficiency which funnels degradation and human weakness from the top to the bottom, as well as from the bottom to the top. Most dream of self-realization and great stature.
When official press release from meetings such as the Economic Track of the US-China Strategic and Economic Dialogue are released for consumption very few taking any interest in the complex task of digesting the information. Some reporters will read the information and pass it off as “unmarketable” as newstainment and the general population, entitled with frivolous wanting, can barely manage to read the first few sentences.
The document itself draws serious attention to the problem of newstainment and diametric sources of information. Reading most alternative media reports and watching the evening news would leave most with the impression that the US and China are embroiled in a growing geopolitical and economic problem surrounding international trade and the South China Sea.
The reality, as the document defines, is the following:
“As the world’s two largest economies, the United States and China share a mutual interest in each other’s economic prosperity, and recognize that enhanced cooperation on the diverse set of issues encompassed in the S&ED is crucial for the health of the broader global economy. During the eight meeting of the S&ED, the two sides pledged to implement fully S&ED commitments, including those from the previous seven dialogues. The United States and China announced further concrete measures to support strong domestic and global growth, promote open trade and investment, and enhance and foster financial market stability reform. The two sides also discussed international economic issues including the G20 financial-track agenda, persistent risks facing their respective domestic economies and the global economy, the necessary policy tools for addressing those risks, and global economic governance.”
Naval movements and geopolitical positioning before and during the meetings could be reflective of each side supporting its policy stances during the negotiations. But to interpret these moves as growing hostility would be a mistake, though such moves do make for great newstainment revenues.
The document, which is published by the US Treasury itself, also states the following:
“The United States supports China’s presidency to host a successful G20 Hangzhou Summit in 2016 and looks forward to working closely with China to promote strong, sustainable and balanced growth of the global economy. In supporting the G20 as the premier forum for international economic cooperation, both sides are committed to work with other G20 members to (i) strengthen macroeconomic policy cooperation; (ii) use all policy tool to foster confidence and strengthen growth, use fiscal policy flexibly to strengthen growth, use monetary policy to continue to support economic activity and ensure price stability, consistent with central banks’ mandates, and use structural reform to boost potential growth in the medium term; (iii) explore opportunities arising from innovation; (iv) improve global economic, financial and energy governance; (v) address climate change and bolster clean energy; (vi) contribute to inclusive and sustainable global development through the implementation of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, both domestically and internationally, and the timely implementation of the Addis Ababa Action Agenda.”
That one section from the publication provides factual support for the whole thesis presented here on POM.
There’s even more:
“The United States and China support efforts to improve the orderliness and predictability of sovereign debt restructuring processes, including further promoting the inclusion of enhanced collective actions clauses (CAC’s) and pari passu clause in the contracts of both newly issued and outstanding stock of sovereign bonds, as well as encourage cooperation between creditors and debtors during sovereign debt restructuring.”
But wait, there’s even more still:
“The United States supports the IMF’s decision to include renminbi in the SDR basket. Both countries support the IMF’s examination of the possible broader use of the SDR.”
Though the pull of newstainment is strong, the need for factual information keeps me engrossed in the complex and down-right dry publications of the central banks and other monetary institutions. That is my own method of personal gap analysis. – JC