by Social Justice Education

(Zitelmann, 9/30/2019)

Table of Contents

Introduction 2

Method and Theory 2

The NBA and China Conflict as a Hologram 4

Monopoly Capitalism and State Capitalism 7

The Corporation Known as the People’s Republic of China 12

Censorship 12

Draconian attacks on the Human Rights of Women and Children 14

Repression of National Minorities 14

Muslims put in Concentration Camps 14

Chinese Monopoly Capitalist Class and the State of the PRC 14

The Export of Capital versus the Export of Commodities 15

Corporate Quicksand 16

Fentanyl Revenge 21

The Demise of Trumpism 22

Trump is the Symptom, Capitalism is the Disease 23

Socialism is the Cure 23

Socialism is as Socialism does 24

References 24

The NBA and China

“The people, and the people alone, are the motive force in the making of world history” (Mao Zedong).

(Gill, 2019)

Introduction

The recent snafu between the NBA and the People’s Republic of China (PRC) is a hologram for understanding broad international, geopolitical, ideological and social-system-wide issues. Indeed, close examination of the political/economic logic driving this particular dispute, underlying the motive social forces involved, as through a prism can reveal the source of the current debt crisis in the West, the extreme poverty amidst the so-called economic upturn in the U.S., and even the demise of Trumpism as a social concern. In fact, such an understanding, gained through the utilization of social science tools, can become co-equal with an understanding of the nature of this stage in the life/demise of the era in human history known as Western civilization.

Method and Theory This study is written with the tools of historical materialism (social science). Put simply the method and theory of historical materialism begins with the needs of the people with regard to the dissemination of information. The researchers, those of us who are congealing information in this study, seek out, first what it is the people need to know. The people of the United States (and, indeed, the people of the world) are currently suffering under the brutal regime of Trumpism.

Our research method (popularly known as People’s Research), based as it is in the principles of historical materialism, studies social phenomenon, such as the conflict of the NBA with the PRC, not from the narrow perspective of “America,” nor from the perspective of the “needs of Americans.” Instead we draw our sense of the needs of the people by taking a global perspective — by looking at the issues through a global lens, by listening to the voices of the people world-wide.

A third principle of historical materialism utilized to prepare this study is to examine how the material life of society — how humans are producing what is needed for us to survive and thrive — is effected by, interacts with, the political system, the system of rule. It is on this foundation that we intend to gain an understanding of how the conflicts, such as that of the NBA and the PRC, are influenced and determined by the economic system, by the market economy, and by the type of economy operating in the PRC today: depending upon which indices the researcher uses, the PRC is today either the largest economy in the world or the 2nd largest behind the U.S. Regarding this assessment there is little-to-no dispute.

Fourth, as our research effort is generated from the people world-wide in their hundreds of millions — to determine what kind of information the people need to further the cause of humanity — we produce this study to support the people’s cause: the cause for peace and harmony, the cause for freedom from oppression and exploitation; the cause of we the people weathering the demise of one social system, and the bringing into being of a social system which places the needs of the people first.

Finally, the specific topic of the NBA and China is used here as an evocative devise. The NBA is wildly popular in the United States, and around the world. The NBA currently has a fan base in the PRC which may be larger than that of the US. In this circumstance we want to tap into the interest in this cultural/entertainment phenomenon to induce the reader to consider the reach of this phenomenon into much larger and determinant spheres of economics, politics and human spirit.

The NBA and China Conflict as a Hologram

The National Basketball Association (NBA) is a large entertainment corporation which has extensive investments in China. The NBA is a small corporation compared to hundreds of others from the U.S. which are now knee-deep in investments in the PRC.

At this time, everyone on planet Earth who is sentient knows that there is a major human rights battle going in the city of Hong Kong. The people there are protesting the connection of their city to the military dictatorship which is the People’s Republic next door. In this circumstance some people outside of Hong Kong are supporting, at least in their words, the protests. Daryl Morey, General Manager of the Houston Rockets NBA team, stepped into the fray when he tweeted that he believed the concerns of the hundreds of thousands of protesters in Hong Kong are legitimate.

Daryl Morey: “Fight for freedom, stand with Hong Kong.”

The reaction from the PRC was swift: “Chinese officials expressed outrage. Chinese companies suspended partnerships with the N.B.A. State-run television pulled coverage of two preseason games in China between the Los Angeles Lakers and Brooklyn Nets” (Branch, 2019).

The N.B.A. responded to these recriminations and retaliation from the PRC with this from its initial press release: “…[S]ports and the N.B.A. can be used as a unifying force to bridge cultural divides” (Branch, 2019). NBA Commissioner, Adam Silver stepped back from publicly expressing his support of free speech.

On the other hand, in the United States fans in the stadiums of NBA games who were showing support for Hong Kong protesters were escorted from N.B.A. games. Think about this: In the bastion of “freedom of speech” that the United Sates fronts itself to be, fans who raised up in their outstretched arms placards supporting freedom of speech in “communist” China were kicked out of NBA games which they had paid to watch!?

The PRC cancelled upcoming NBA games. In the description of the New York Times, “Beijing sent the N.B.A. into a corner to think about what it did. ‘We have decided not to hold media availability for our teams for the remainder of our trip in China,’ the N.B.A. announced in a statement Friday. ‘They [NBA players] have been placed into a complicated and unprecedented situation while abroad and we believe it would be unfair to ask them to address these matters in real time’” (Branch).

Just as white supremacist fans and commentators in the U.S. have told LeBron James to stop speaking out for human rights of People of Color in the U.S., demanding that he “stick to dribbling a basketball,” so the NBA has followed suit when it comes to the human rights of people in China.

Again, as the NYT article points out, “Expressing a desire to stick to sports is, itself, a political act” (2019). To the dismay of millions of LeBron James fans (who love him for his basketball skills and for his stand on human rights), he decided the issue was out of bounds: ESPN reports that James said “… it was too much for the players to take on in that moment — to explain a complicated issue with racial, socioeconomic and geopolitical layers while visitors in China” (Silverman, 2019). This statement is almost word-for-word the statement of the NBA Commissioner.

James Harden and Russell Westbrook, two NBA players whose popularity hovers one rung down from the lofty air of King LeBron have declined to talk about China. ESPN instructed its on-air commentators to speak no evil regarding China. ESPN has the broadcast rights to the N.B.A. worth billions of dollars (Silverman).

The importance of all this is in what it says about the current state of the world, what it says about the social system, and even what it says about the era of human history in which we are living.

In the U.S. all children are brought up to believe that communism is the devil, that there is no freedom, no equality before the law, that communism is a military dictatorship, that the people are beat down into being robots.

Now, the great sports figures, the CEO’s of the U.S. giant corporations which are identified as being co-equal with U.S. culture, and even the president of the United States are universally silent about repression and “communist aggression.” The NBA players and the general manager who spoke out, apparently… miss-spoke, and they will not be heard from again on this subject.

Again, in the words of the New York Times reporter, “China sent the NBA to sit in the corner,” like a little child who has run afoul of the rules of decorum in their kindergarten class. It is this description which we believe lends itself to looking at this dispute as a barometer for major socio-political conflict in the world today. Indeed, hundreds of gigantic U.S. corporations have been told to keep their mouths shut regarding repression in “communist” China.

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Monopoly Capitalism and State Capitalism

What does it mean when the bastion of capitalist democracy, the United States of America, is silent about human rights abuses in “communist” China? In order to answer this question from the perspective of social science, it must first be established that we place quotation marks around the word “communist” because the PRC is not a communist country.

The People’s Republic of China used to be a socialist country. In 1976, a form of coup d’etat occurred which brought back capitalism to China. It is a capitalism of a different variety than the U.S. It is called state capitalism.

“State capitalism is an in which the undertakes commercial (i.e. ) economic activity and where the are organized and managed as (including the processes of , and ), or where there is otherwise a dominance of government agencies (agencies organized along business-management practices) or of in which the state has controlling shares. literature defines state capitalism as a social system combining with ownership or control by a state — by this definition, a state capitalist country is one where the government controls the economy and essentially acts like a single huge , extracting the surplus value from the workforce in order to invest it in further production. This designation applies regardless of the political aims of the state (even if the state is nominally socialist) and some people argue that the modern constitutes a form of state capitalism and/or that the failed in its goal to establish socialism, but rather established state capitalism” (Li, 2018).

Mao Zedong, the leader of the Chinese socialist revolution, in making a social science assessment of the problems of the emerging social system warned that because of the presence of centuries of the spirit of “do for self” and individualism developed under class society, that it would be very easy for the capitalist roaders inside the socialist state to set up, through a coup, a fascist state in no time. This capitalist class inside Chinese socialism did just that in 1976, and for the last quarter of the 20th century on until today, it has been developing this reactionary system.

By 2015, the Shanghai Stock Exchange had become the third-largest in the world by market capitalization (Homes, 2015). The PRC is a commodities juggernaut, importing over half of the world’s annual consumption of aluminum, and nearly half of its nickel, copper, zinc, tin and steel.

Global institutions, including the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and the World Bank, have endorsed a new China-led international bank called the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB). The PRC is developing its own currency, the renminbi, to compete with and eventually overtake the U.S. dollar as the most widely used currency in the world. In this connection, its central bank has been building up its gold reserves.

The PRC is state capitalist. This is a major point of misunderstanding among the general public. Because it calls itself “communist” has everything to do with what it wants to sell to the world and its own people. We who are conducting this study could call ourselves millionaires. It doesn’t make it so. State capitalism means, in reality, there is one corporation. Yes, China is “allowing” “independent franchises” to operate as capitalist businesses. In other words, Chinese capitalists are allowed to operate as such — have their own corporation. However, just like Amazon (Lynn, 2019) (though on a vastly larger scale), these are franchises underneath the dictate of the CPC. The Communist Party of China, the core organization of the People’s Republic of China, is a capitalist corporation. The PRC is also a military dictatorship.

The post-1992 economic model, engineered under the leadership of Deng Xiaoping, is widely credited with lifting millions out of poverty and transforming China into the world’s second-largest economy. “But for many who have studied the earlier period, or were directly involved in it, the short-lived 1980s reforms still represent an alternative path to more sustainable (albeit slower) growth and a healthier private sector. That earlier approach, they say, is especially relevant today as China confronts the fallout from three decades of unbridled state-led growth — including income inequality, environmental degradation, excessive government debt and persistent state-sector inefficiency” (, 2019).

Shenzen, China’s first capitalist special economic zone, grew from 60,000 to 12 million inhabitants in just 40 years.

Liberal representatives of capitalist economics, such as the author of the quote above, maintain that every step of China’s economic success is due to the PRC’s “liberalization regarding market economics.” What they miss is actually opposite to this: Every step into “market economics” is accompanied by the ultimate ownership and control of the PRC over every element of economic advance. It is state monopoly capitalism because the state is the ultimate monopoly corporation. Everything else, including foreign investors, ultimately amounts to “franchises” under the dictate of the PRC.

“For all the positive developments China has seen in recent decades, a lot still remains to be done. Although its economic growth was accompanied by an increase in economic freedom, there are still deficits in many areas. China has both a strong need for further reforms and great potential for further improvement and growth. Zhang — who, as well as being an astute analyst of the Chinese economy, has himself contributed significantly to its development — stresses: ‘China’s reform started with an all-powerful government under the planned economy. The reason China could have sustained economic growth during the process of reform was that the government managed less and the proportion of state-owned enterprises decreased, not the other way around. It was precisely the relaxation of government control that brought about market prices, sole proprietorships, town and village enterprises, private enterprises, foreign enterprises, and other non-state-owned entities.’ Taken together, all of this formed the basis for China’s unprecedented economic rise” ().

What this analysis avoids addressing is that, whatever the form of “transfer” from state owned to private owned, in the final analysis the single corporation, the PRC, dictates the final outcome.

The leadership of the Cultural Revolution led by Mao Zedong warned that, “…both ownership by the whole people and collective ownership involve the question of leadership, that is, the question of which class holds the ownership in fact and not just in name….” (Chang Chun-chiao, p9)… “Politics is the concentrated expression of economics. Whether the ideological and political line is correct or incorrect, and which class holds the leadership, decides which class owns those factories in actual fact” (Chang, 1975, p10).

Now that state monopoly capitalism is in full control, the question is different: The “which class” referred to by Chang Chun-chiao in the above quote now becomes “which corporation,” the largest monopoly capitalist corporation in the history of the world — the PRC — or General Electric, or General Motors, or Bank of America, or Motorola, or Pepsi Cola, or Nike. It’s not close.

You go in and employ 100,000 Chinese laborers at $1/hour. In the U.S. you are currently paying your laborers $15/hour. Now, you are making money hand-over-fist. Suddenly half of your overall capital is in China. There is nothing exaggerated about such a proposition — 1 out every 4 workers in the world is laboring in the PRC. Yes, you pay tribute to the Chinese through tax/tariffs; but the profits are ridiculous. Half your business is in China… and now the Chinese say “Get out of here; you can’t speak about human rights in China!!!” Three years ago you entered somewhere at the top of your industry. Now, you have risen even higher. Oh, but China is kicking you out — hhmmmmm, that’s half your business. Now, you have suddenly fallen to middle of the pack and you are free-falling down — because in monopoly capitalism you either go up or down, there is no status quo for more than a minute….

The Corporation Known as the People’s Republic of China

The CPC and the PRC are very complex organizations which do not operate as a single unity, but operate within a worldwide capitalist framework and market. While the “directors” — as it were — do frequently benefit financially in individual or family ways, it is not structured the same way as a corporation with them overtly owning the corporation and controlling its operations and profit. Instead, corporations — or “business mountain strongholds” — are allowed to operate at the will of the Party-state, so long as they do not undermine its larger goals. And such contradictions between corporations (large and small) and the Party-state can be economic, in other words, they can be undermining/competing with favored (usually private) corporations — which happens more at a local/provincial level than at the national level — or they can be political, i.e., challenging the political monopoly of the Party-state and/or its underlying principles/modes of operation. In other words, some of these private businesses that are allowed to operate under the dictate of the CPC can quarrel with some of the anti-democratic means, such as surveillance, censorship, unwieldy taxes, and so on. The phrase has been offered up, “the gray area in China,” which refers to the phenomena of individuals and corporations being allowed to do what they want so long as what they do does not threaten that economic-political monopoly. This is state capitalism.

Censorship In the United States we have “freedom of the press,” and censorship here works much like today’s economic draft for the armed forces. During the war waged by the United States against the people of Vietnam, working class men of all nationalities were conscripted into “service” to fight this war. Only the rich, like the Kennedys or Trump, were not drafted. Today, poverty forces working class men and women of all nationalities to serve the permanent war economy and the permanent war being waged by the U.S. against the peoples around the world. Censorship works in an identical fashion. The monopoly ownership of the resources, the monopoly ownership of the means of information production serves as a form of censorship. In other words, the state, the liberal democracy that is the U.S. government does not have to step in — censorship works itself out in favor of the ruling class by economic means.

In the PRC, the state capitalist system determines who can speak, who can write, who can publish/print, and who you can communicate with electronically. The PRC heavily censors news from other countries (Agents France Presses, 2019). China controls free information flow through its censorship of the internet (Hultzer, 2018).

The Communist Party of China censors media generally. “China’s constitution affords its citizens freedom of speech and press, but the opacity of Chinese media regulations allows authorities to crack down on news stories by claiming that they expose state secrets and endanger the country. The definition of state secrets in China remains vague, facilitating censorship of any information that authorities deem harmful to their political or economic interests” (Beina Xu and Eleanor Albert, 2017). Can we not see why Trump likes them so much?

“In 2016, Freedom House ranked China last for the second consecutive year out of sixty-five countries that represent 88 percent of the world’s internet users” (Beina, et al).

On the issue of a monolith of approved thought, the General Secretary of the Communist Party of China, Xi Jinping, recently explained: “All the work by the Party’s media must reflect the Party’s will.”

The Council on Foreign Relations recently observed how censorship is related to the issue at hand, that of the quicksand known as the export of capital into the PRC: “China has made it exceedingly difficult for foreign technology firms to compete within the country. The websites of U.S. social media outlets like Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram are blocked. Google, after a protracted battle with Chinese authorities over the banning of search terms, quietly gave up its fight in early 2013 by turning off a notification that alerted Chinese users of potential censorship. In late 2014, China banned Google’s email service Gmail, a move that triggered a concerned response [sic] from the U.S. State Department” (Beina, et al).

In an article published by the Atlantic, the authors explain that, “China’s surveillance state should scare everyone. The country is perfecting a vast network of digital espionage as a means of social control” (Mitchell, 2018). This vast and intensive surveillance system amounts to a method of thought policing. The article goes on to witness the implications for the peoples worldwide. On the most elemental level, the PRC is selling its surveillance technology to the West. This type of “commercial cooperation” fits right into the vision of fascists like Trump who would like to jail anyone who disagrees with him.

Draconian Attacks on the Human Rights of Women and Children The “one-child-per-couple” law, designed to control China’s population increase, has been abandoned after 35 years in favor of the “two-child-per-couple” law. Both laws manifestly discriminate against and are oppressive of the human rights of women and children. Under these draconian laws many women have been and continue to be subjected to forced sterilizations or abortions. Newborn girls have been and continue to be killed, removed from homes by “family-planning” officials and then killed, or abandoned by parents who are desperate that their one permitted baby be a boy (The Economist, 2018).

Repression of National Minorities The United Nations Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination concluded its investigation into human rights violations in the PRC August 13, 2018.

The Committee identified a systemic oppression of national minorities which included:

• Mass detention of Uighur peoples, “under the pretext of countering terrorism and religious extremism” (Krainin, 2019). Estimates of the number of people subjected to prolonged imprisonment, left incommunicado indefinitely range from “tens of thousands to upwards of a million” (Krainin).

• Tibetans and Uighurs, who in addition to being national minorities each have spiritual practices, Islam and Buddhism respectively, are each subject to the criminalization of peaceful civic and religious expression.

• Language discrimination against both peoples is systematic and ubiquitous (Amnesty International, 2018).

Muslims put in Concentration Camps It is now widely believed that the PRC has placed hundreds of thousands, nay over one million Muslims in concentration camps as a brutal measure of social control — this is recognized everywhere except by the U.S. Congress and President, and by U.S. corporate leaders, each of whom are silent on the issue. Chinese Muslims reveal rapes, abortions and forced sterilizations at concentration camps. Shocking footage of hundreds of shackled and blindfolded prisoners has emerged (Gant et al, 2019).

U.S. acquiescence in this specific form of repression in China dovetails with the latest identification of Islam as the most daunting threat to Western democracies. 40 years ago it was “communist aggression.” Chinese “communism,” as we have seen is now “in,” and Islam is the devil.

Chinese Monopoly Capitalist Class and the State of the PRC Another first in the period of the last stage of capitalism, the monopoly capitalist phase, is the coincidence between the state of the People’s Republic of China and the ruling class.

In all other imperialist countries, emerging as they did at the beginning of the 20th century, the state has served (and continues to serve) the interests and dictate of the ruling class, the monopoly capitalist class. It has been argued that the Nazi regime was a state which dictated to the capitalist class of Germany. Close examination of the workings of fascism reveals that it was the Hitlerite regime which did the bidding of German monopoly capital, not the reverse.

In the military dictatorships/client states/semi-colonial or colonial regimes of Asia, Africa and Latin America dominated by European, U.S. and Japanese imperialism in the 20th century (and today), these regimes did (and do) the bidding of the monopoly capitalist class of the imperialist metropoles.

The PRC is not a colonial country. The state known as the People’s Republic of China, being itself a capitalist corporation of unique magnitude is the first imperialist state in the short historical period of capitalist imperialism to be identical to the ruling class of the country. The Chinese monopoly capitalist class and the state called the PRC are coincident — they are one and the same.

The Export of Capital instead of the Export of Commodities

Nike is making fabulous profits from the exploitation of Chinese labor. Enormous. They employ Chinese labor at cents to the dollar which they would have to pay the average U.S. workers — and a minuscule fraction of what they would pay to U.S. unionized laborers. OK. But, they also pay extremely high taxes to the CPC. It works for Nike. They can run their ad campaign fronting Collin Kaepernick at the same time as they can super-exploit Chinese labor; at the same time as they pay a gigantic tariff to the CPC. This is a U.S. capitalist corporation, that is, a corporation based in the U.S. under U.S. capitalist democracy — with the face of LeBron James on the cover of its package. They export their capital to the People’s Republic of China. The Chinese Party-state addresses foreign capital which comes into China through the state banking system; such which allows the Party-state to take a portion of the proceeds through exchange rates and other mechanisms – in addition to other fees.

Think about it: The CPC is one corporation. This corporation exploits the labor of one billion Chinese workers. Here is an example of the difference between monopoly capitalism in the U.S., on one hand, and in the PRC on the other:

Amazon and Google used to partner — Google providing Google Maps for Amazon’s drivers. Amazon decided this was not working, and discontinued the partnership, determining to use its own version of Maps (Richmond, 2019). One problem: Amazon’s version is deformed. It does not notice that 154 Seaver Street is on the other side of the road from 155 Seaver Street. So it sends you [the delivery van] down the street, and then orders you to “Make a u-turn on Seaver Street.” There is no getting around this glitch. I have been told by the “experienced” drivers: “If you sway from the itinerary once, you’re never getting back on.”

The delivery personnel are hostage to the rabbit [the phone with the itinerary app]. The rabbit has all of us doing u-turns in the middle of busy intersections all day long. Monopoly capitalism is supposed to eliminate competition? By definition, monopoly means the absence of competition. No, the monopolies still compete with each other, and it leads to this extreme inefficiency. A People’s Government, a socialist government would determine the best app for mapping and that would be it. No super-profits for this group; no competition from that group (Lynn, 2019)

Corporate Quicksand State capitalist PRC is not socialist. But, they have no competition. They are far more efficient in their exploitation of the peoples… and foreign corporations than Amazon, Google or any of these U.S. also-rans. The state capitalist corporation known as the PRC is infinitely larger than Bank of America, Microsoft, Google, Facebook and ExxonMobile… combined. It’s not close.

What happens when Nike, Pepsi Cola, IBM, General Electric and so on invest in China, employ labor in China, build plants in China, sell products in China? What does the PRC do to make it so that they all shut up when there are gross and grotesque human rights violations, such as those exhibited today in Hong Kong, such as the murdering of female babies in the wombs of their mothers as a “method of birth control,” such as torturing Muslims inside concentration camps, such as committing genocide against national minorities? How does the PRC hold these corporations hostage, up to and including making an Executive of the Dallas Mavericks apologize? What is the mechanism whereby the fascist PRC takes ownership of the puny NBA?

Capitalism is addiction. Once you are making those super-profits, you can’t stop. Now, the PRC bans corporate publicity when you say anything they don’t like. These capitalist corporations, once “hostile enemies of anti-democratic regimes like ‘communist’ China,” now become the PRC’s advertisers. The PRC will ban an entity from the Web as happened to Google, the New York Times and recently South Park. If you run afoul of PRC marketing prerequisites the PRC simply bans your company from their market. When the People’s Liberation Army and the Communist Party of China won their war of national liberation in 1949, one of the first acts of the new government was to nationalize the giant colonial corporate businesses from the United States, Great Britain, Spain, Germany, France and Japan. It was this act — not lack of freedom of speech or any other concern for human rights — it was this act of taking their capital which the imperialists so hated, and why they hate socialism so much. Today the state capitalist PRC “nationalizes” businesses, daily and hourly, after you have made addictive profits, and before you can bite the hand that feeds you. Either you go along with the program, of exploitation of the giant labor force inside China, in a peaceful and harmonious way, that is, in a way which promotes the PRC, or they will “nationalize” you. The NBA was on the verge of being “nationalized” when Adam Silver (NBA GM) told the players and owners to “shut up…”

According to Facts and Details.com (2019), in 1979, three years after the change in power from socialists back to capitalist roaders (and 3 years after the death of Mao Zedong), there were 100 foreign-owned enterprises in China. By 1998 this figure had risen to 280,000. And by 2007 twenty-five million Chinese workers inside the PRC were employed by foreign corporations. This is not the export of commodities by these foreign companies. This is the export of capital, the export of their production plants, the setting up shop of their businesses in China. Today, “U.S. companies with offices in Beijing include Google, Microsoft, FMC, Cigna, Unisys and General Electric. U.S. companies with major production facilities in Shanghai include Dupont, Rohm & Haas and General Electric. As of early 2010, Fortune 500 companies had 98 research and development facilities in China” (factsanddetails.com, 2019).

Major foreign corporations in China also include Coca Cola, Pepsi Cola, Nike, AT&T Corp., Bristol-Myers Squibb Co., Citibank, Morgan Stanley & Co., Volkswagen AG, Unilever, Toshiba Corp., Matsushita Electrical Industrial Co., General Motors, France’s Citreon, Philips Electronics, Cisco, Microsoft, Motorola, Samsung Electronics, NEC, Proctor and Gamble, Wringley chewing gum and Hitachi Ltd (2019).

According to a study conducted by Peter Behr for the Washington Post, “Western products — -especially cigarettes, liquor, cameras, watches and designer clothes — -have traditionally been seen as statue symbols.” Behr quoted another Western analyst to the effect that, “Anything foreign is cachet. Rightly or wrongly, it’s considered to be of better quality” by the Chinese consumer. Among the products of U.S. corporations that have been available for some time in China are Head and Shoulders shampoo, Raid insecticide, Camay soap, Milky Way candy bars and Dove ice creams bars. Behr goes onto observe that, “For a while Chinese companies Americanized their products and logos, putting Statues of Liberty on their packages. The flying red horse symbol of the Mobile Corp. has been in China since the late 1800s” (Behr, 1994).

As of 2010, 300,000 foreign companies had invested in China. The following are U.S. corporations with the largest investment in China (as of 1998 — these are the most recent figures we could find): “1) General Motors ($2 billion), with a gigantic Buick plant in Shanghai; 2) Motorola ($1.2 billion), cell phones and pagers; 3) General Electric ($1.1 billion), high-tech medical equipment and CD plastic; 4) Arco ($620 million), oil exploration in the South China Sea; 5) Coca Cola ($500 million); 6) Hewlett-Packard ($400 million); 7) Proctor and Gamble ($360 million), with a huge shampoo plant; 8) Amoco ($350 million), polyester plant supplies clothes factories; 9) United Technologies ($250 million)” (factsanddetails.com).

A study undertaken by Jacob L. Shapiro for Global Futures provides figures which are consistent with most other investigations into the economic situation for China’s 1.4 billion people. Shapiro says that China’s middle class — “urban consumers” — makes up 270 million people or approximately 20% of the population of the country. That’s a middle class which is more than three-fourths of the size of the entire population of the United States. In the United Sates in the 1950’s a moniker for the emerging middle class was “the nouveau riche” — they were thrilled to be of the “beautiful people…” This is the smiles you see on the faces of the Chinese tourists in the U.S. today; they are the nouveau riche in contrast to those living in abject poverty.

This same study estimates that another 15% or slightly more than 200 million people live in abject poverty, semi-starvation, lack of shelter, unemployed… — that’s close to two-thirds the population of the U.S.

This leaves 65% of the population, in other words, almost one billion people, which make up the Chinese labor force which Nike is paying 50 cents/hour (, 2019). This is the labor pool that GM, GE, Amazon, IBM and the rest of monopoly capital dive into when they invest in China. It does not matter how large you are — no capitalist corporation on planet earth can resist exploiting this sea of helpless workers. For these Chinese laborers, the only social force which “has their backs” is the fascist PRC. Fascism is a form of state which suits state capitalism. Bourgeois democracy suits U.S. capitalism because the monopolies still compete with each other. This gives the U.S. citizen the false impression that something “lawful” and “fair” is taking place — even with the buffoon as president. This gives the average U.S. citizen the illusion that they are making a choice when they vote for the Demoblicans instead of the Republicrats or the other way around.

Perhaps the main element of this state capitalist system is that not only does China have a bigger population than countries that were colonized in the past (although India would seem comparable given different periods), but the most critical fact would seem to be that it has a powerful and organized central government (which India and other colonies did not) that allows it to exert power over corporations seeking its (decreasingly) cheap labor and its market all in the context of world capitalism having potentially saturated outlets for capital and products by the third-quarter of the last century. Marxist economist David Harvey outlines this process of state capitalist China saving the world capitalist system, in his Podcast, The Significance of China in the Global Economy (2019).

( 2019)

The export of capital (in contradistinction to the export of commodities) is one of the three or four foundation stones distinguishing “free market” capitalism from the monopoly stage of capitalism. Indeed, the export of capital is the basis for imperialist economics. Now, we have a new phenomenon with the state capitalist PRC which is infinitely larger and more powerful than any individual capitalist corporation. When the NBA, GE, Nike, GM, Westinghouse, Motorola, IBM or any other U.S. capitalist corporation exports their capital to China… they have stepped into quicksand. The corporation known as the PRC is eating them alive. It is on this basis that corporate executives like that of the NBA and Nike are daily apologizing to the PRC for even appearing as if they support human rights anywhere, and particularly in Hong Kong.

In this connection, we’re trying to make this basic element of the imminent fall of Trumpism intelligible to the reader.

(1) The export of capital (in contradistinction from the export of commodities/products) is one of the three most important elements of imperialist economics. You drop your oil rigs down, employ the locals at super-exploitative wages, take the resources out of the ground, you get tax breaks from the colonial subject nation, and you extract super-profits — and you and yours own the country — colonialism.

(2) This situation with the corporation known as the PRC is new — is there anything else in the short period of human history known as capitalist imperialism/the threshold of socialism, which can compare to the phenomenon of the state capitalist PRC? When you “drop your rigs down” in the PRC (export your capital to China) in short order they own you.

(3) Because of their extreme secrecy, it is hard to know the inner working of the entire organization — but, what is discernible is that at the national level power is being increasingly centralized and, even at that level, de-democratized. Provincial and lower level governments (and Party organizations) still operate at the good will of the higher levels and are allowed to do what they want so long as that does not challenge either the overall paradigm or specific interests of organization — or in some cases, individual — at a higher level. So in the past there have been, for example, experiments with more democratic forms of local, largely rural, governance, but they have neither gone far nor have they been institutionalized.

Fentanyl Revenge Another significant element of the increasingly dominant position of the PRC is the flooding, by China of the United States, with the synthetic heroin known as fentanyl (Cass, 2017). Thousands of people in the United States are overdosing and dying from this drug every month (National Institute on Drug Abuse, 2018). It is a pandemic. There is a historical counterpart to this type of sabotage of the culture and physical health of the people of this country. In the Opium Wars of just over a century ago (Ye Sheng, 2007), the British occupation forces (aided by the US military) in colonial China literally forced hundreds-of-thousands and millions of Chinese semi-slaves to become addicted to opium. Now the tables have turned.

The “communist” Chinese are “offering” this fentanyl for free. For its part, in direct parallel with what the U.S. government is not doing to protect U.S. capital entering China, the Republicrats and the Demoblicans are doing absolutely nothing but taking payoffs from Big Pharma, sharing in the profits from the drug addiction pandemic. For one thing, the U.S. government is 100% beholden to the pharmaceutical industry which has demanded and won the right to legally drug half the population of the U.S. Aided by the colossal health insurance industry, Big Pharma has offered up its “Medicated Assisted Treatment (MAT)”… for drug addiction. This is now the principal way in which drug addiction is being addressed by the U.S. government and state governments and by the health care industry across the U.S. — replacing illegal drugs with prescribed legal drugs, and giving these to drug addicts and calling it “treatment.”

It is in these circumstances that the U.S. government, Big Pharma and the health insurance industry are actually working with the PRC to welcome in fentanyl and create millions of hopelessly addicted souls among the U.S. population. The scale of this pandemic makes it co-equal with war against the people of the United States, a war which the U.S. government is complicit in waging in accord with the PRC.

The Demise of Trumpism

The kindergarten dictator “at the helm” in the United States is scary for what his presence reveals about a section of the people of the United States. But, just like Hitler, Trump is a front man — a representative of the ruling class of the U.S. He says, “We’re pulling out of Afghanistan.” Did U.S. troops pull out of Afghanistan? Of course not. That war is steady money for the militarists who run the U.S. He says, “We’re leaving the Kurds to the gentle embrace of Syria and ISIS.” Yes, on a personal level he is willing to leave any of his former allies high and dry. But, did U.S. troops leave Syria? Of course not — there is too much money to be made from the suffering of the people there, as the U.S. arms manufacturers provide the most advanced weaponry to every side in the multi-sided war. Please observe that the Demoblicans are almost universally protesting Trump’s idea to withdraw U.S. troops from these war zones.

But, Trumpism and the U.S. ruling class have together run into a behemoth: The specter of the fascist People’s Republic of China has everyone in the U.S. ruling class shaking in their boots. We the people of the U.S. and of the world don’t have to worry so much about the temper tantrums of this kindergarten maniac — even though they cause death and destruction. The worst may yet to come as the U.S. ruling class flails about trying to figure out what to do about this more powerful rival. Trump, for his part, cannot solve the problem.

Trump is the Symptom, Capitalism is the Disease Please understand: this is why the Ringling Brothers clown and the one living Koch brother say nothing about the human rights violations of the PRC — they can’t say anything. The state capitalist PRC is kicking the innards out of U.S. monopoly capital. This is why Trump’s side show in Syria is just that. This is why all of Trump is a side show.

This is why Trumpism is doomed. His attempted “trade war” with China is smoke and mirrors. It can’t be won through tariffs and taxes.

You, the reader, are hearing it here first: Trump is going down, not because of his incestuous flirting with Joe Biden’s son. His Republicrat (and Demoblican) supporters are going to flee because Trumpism has no answer for China. He’s going down as his Republicrat base in the ruling class is going to …let him go because he’s totally mismanaging US monopoly capital.

Socialism is the Cure

We, the people of the world who need revolutionary change, are not concerned with the personality of the leaders of this dying social order. We have much more important work to address: A central reason why social scientists, using the method and theory of historical materialism, understand dying capitalism to be the birthplace of socialism is that the workers of the country, indeed of the world, have been organized socially — the entire production of the country, and the world, is being performed by all of us together. There is no need for the capitalist class. (And, here we are not speaking of assassinating a class of people. In socialism everybody gets to work. For the first time, the super rich would actually have to do something productive!)

Another key element of this logical transition from the death of the social system based on social classes, to a system which means the abolition of classes, is that we the oppressed and exploited people of the country, and the world, have learned through this apocalypse, that we must rely on each other — there is no super hero who is going to drop down and save us. God, Allah, Buddha, no one is going to magically appear to save us. God, Allah, Buddha or whatever higher being anyone may ascribe to, must emerge through the practice of the people in our millions — our god must be the masses of the people and our collective will to bring about a healthy, sane society.

The United States of America is currently the leading example of the decline and decay of the capitalist system. The People’s Republic of China has the unique identity of a power on the rise, while at the same time embracing all that is most evil about capitalism — including its military dictatorship, censorship, oppression of women and national minorities. We have pointed out that a feature of Chinese state capitalism is that the military is the government. The United States is also a military dictatorship hiding behind a government structure which serves the needs of the U.S. monopoly capitalist class.

Socialism is as Socialism does It was People’s China in the 1960’s and early ‘70’s which was one of the brightest beacons of hope for the people of the world, particularly as the Great Proletarian Cultural Revolution endeavored to address some of the formerly unsolved problems of building socialism — one of those problems being the emergence of a capitalist class inside the socialist state, as had occurred before the birth of the PRC in the formerly socialist Soviet Union. The Soviet Union became a state capitalist system before China, and long before it reverted to “free market” capitalism under Trump’s kindergarten teacher, Vladimir Putin.

The Cultural Revolution in China was the largest mass movement in the history of humankind. That it did not succeed in overcoming the push back to a system of exploitation of the vast majority by the small minority — that People’s Socialist China has reverted to a class system which viciously oppresses the people of its own country and is on the march to oppress people all around the world, does not mean that we do not take lessons from one of the greatest experiments in socialism attempted thus far by humanity. The Cultural Revolution was premised on the principal that the people in our millions, from below, must press the changes in spirit, organization, in our relationships with one another, and in the method of rule of the country, which will allow permanent progress to be made in the development of an egalitarian system which places the needs of the vast majority first.

As socialists and revolutionaries, we look at the current situation through the lens of People’s History. We take the long view and recognize that this period of capitalist imperialism is a mere blink in the eye of human history. Yes, it has been observed, “Oh, but what a blink…!” It has been rough, what with genocidal campaigns, apocalyptic oppression visited upon the people by the capitalist slavers in the death throes of their maniacal rule. And, yet, this dying phase of class society has been traumatizing the world’s people for less than a few centuries.

All historical progress has been made, not by some heroes, and definitely not the slavers — the George Washington’s and the Deng Xiao-ping’s. All human progress has been made by the people in our millions. And this progress is inevitable. As the revolutionary Chinese fighters said during the Cultural Revolution, “The river flows eastward, no matter how many mountains may stand in its way.” And so it does in the United States of America also. Perseverance in struggle, reliance on the oppressed people to unite and bring into being a healthy social order — this is our mandate.

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In addition to the U.S. military being stationed in bases all over the planet, and in addition to these armed forces participating in the repression of people in civil wars and regional wars all over the planet, in addition to these also the U.S. munitions manufacturers sell weapons to both sides in every war on the planet. It is this enduring and dominating presence of the Pentagon and armaments manufacturers in mass violence which we are referring to when we say “the permanent war economy and the permanent war being waged by the U.S. against the peoples around the world…”