China Throws Money at Kenya
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  • Corlyss

    “China is becoming more involved in maintaining a peaceful, capitalistic trade system”

    Rushing to judgment just a bit, what?

    It’s hardly praiseworthy when it is 100% in China’s interest to expend the money to get first dibs on the product. Involvement where their only interest is in maintaining the viability of the existing international system without such glaringly obvious financial gain to themselves, THAT’S a sign of Chinese maturity and sense of responsibility to the international community worthy of notice. THAT’S praiseworthy, not the routine customarily ruthless self-interest the Kenya grab shows. It’s premature to find selfless interest in larger matters where none exists.

    • Thirdsyphon

      True, nobody’s apt to mistake China for Starfleet anytime soon; but selfless altruism isn’t a prerequisite for peaceful capitalist engagement.

      In fact, the whole philosophy of capitalism proceeds from the notion that there is a deep and abiding (but ultimately rational) selfishness at the heart of human nature. Restraining that nature from resorting to force and/or fraud is pretty much the full extent of what peaceful capitalism demands from us in terms of virtue. . . and even those rules can be bent (in moderation) without destroying the system.

      A willingness to quietly settle down and set about the work of exploiting others through business transactions rather than through war (or the threat thereof) is a major step forward on capitalism’s admittedly modest continuum of moral development. With luck, this new venture will prove to be vastly more profitable than the numerous regional micturition contests that China has been lately obsessing over.

      • Corlyss

        “selfless altruism isn’t a prerequisite for peaceful capitalist engagement.”

        Agree completely. That wasn’t my point. The tenor of the piece was that somehow this move is a sign of Chinese maturity and readiness to assume the role it’s wealth and interests dictate it assume . . . any day now. I just don’t see it as more than the typically selfish move of a colonizing power. And before conclusions are jumped to, I LOVE colonialism and all the benefits it brought to benighted and backwards tribes busy killing each other and selling the remnants of the defeated into slavery. I think the colonial age was one of the greatest engines of modernism and globalism and has yet to get its due from historians eager to prove they are not racist whites.

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