Submitted by Michael Every of Rabobank
As Davos wraps up today, what have we got so far so far from the cockpit of globalisation? Warnings of rising nationalism. Fears of recession. Worries that everything could come tumbling down again. And a total rejection of any policy alternatives regardless. It’s as if the Captain of the Titanic admits to the passengers early into the journey that the ship is sinkable, and indeed they will all drown horribly when it goes down, but then reassures everybody he’s sticking to the same route towards the iceberg anyway. Before flying home in his private jet.
Exhibit A: SO ROSS. Billionaire US Commerce Secretary Ross coming across on TV as a “let them eat cake” kind of guy, when wondering why US government workers without pay don’t just go to a loan-shark to get them through the never-ending shut-down. It was a double-whammy from Ross: he also said the US and China are “miles and miles” away from an agreement on trade, meaning March madness looms, before being prodded to stay on message that it’s all good, even if the real issues over Chinese reforms are where this particular ship is likely to sink.
Exhibit B: SOROS. Emmanuel Goldstein George Soros boldly stating China’s Xi Jinping is: “the most dangerous opponent of those who believe in the concept of open society…Authoritarian regimes are proliferating all over the world and if they succeed, they will become totalitarian….I’ve been concentrating on China, but open societies have many more enemies, Putin’s Russia foremost among them….The first step is to recognize the danger…But now comes the difficult part…The reality is that we are in a Cold War that threatens to turn into a hot one. On the other hand, if Xi and Trump were no longer in power, an opportunity would present itself to develop greater cooperation between the two cyber-superpowers.” Soros openly talked about targeting China’s economy in order to bring down Xi, and that Trump is not going far enough in that regard! And Davos gave Xi a standing ovation two years ago.
It’s unclear how far Saudi Arabia’s “can-we-just-move-on-from-the-whole-hacking-a-man-to-death thing”? sales pitch is going so far at Davos, but China is lobbying intensely: it just announced ‘US banks can start operating there in six months’.