The reaction of the Trolls to the announced sale by the US of Patriot missile batteries, Blackhawk helicopters, and Osprey mine hunting ships to Taiwan has surpassed previous denunciations of American support for the island state. Sanctions against US companies as well as other unspecified consequences have been spit like rail gun projectiles since the deal was announced.
The tone of the Beijing message has been that of superior to inferior. The lofty disapproval and threats of punishment by the Central Kingdom against those barbarians who fail to show proper deference, to pay tribute, to kowtow.
The response by the Trolls undoubtedly surpassed the expectations of the Obama administration--as is evidenced by the pathetic sense of timing shown by Secretary of State Clinton during her remarks in Paris the other day. Remarks which threatened China with diplomatic isolation and other icky-poo things should the Trolls not go along with the next round of sanctions on Iran.
The howls from the Trolls as well as "consequences" for the US will grow louder and perhaps more harmful should the Obama administration find Taiwan is in justified need of the jet fighters and submarines which it has requested. It might be noted in passing that the American sale, even if it should finally include the jets and subs, will in no way alter the basic military balance between China and Taiwan. That balance is irrevocably tilted in favor of the Trolls whose military expenditures continue to expand at double digit percentages year after year.
As the Obama administration and, in particular, the Secretary of State consider the implications of the Chinese reaction, lack of cooperation on Iran, and massive holdings of US debt, they might also consider where the responsibility for the current degenerate situation resides. A bit of pondering on that question might give insight as to where the solution might be found.
Chinese triumphalism is predicated on US money. American bucks have been flowing in ever larger torrents ever since President Clinton "opened the door." Clinton believed for reasons rooted in ideology rather than realpolitik that open trade made for good neighbors. He was wrong. The Chinese hold to a course of world politics which has been and will be hostile to the national security and strategic interests of the US.
President W. Bush pushed the trade door open even further. He also was propelled by ideology rather than realism. His ideology was rooted in the supposed benefits for "bidness" as well as the American consumer. Both did benefit economically, the former more than the latter. But, the benefits for both "bidness" and consumer were at the expense of the nation as a whole.
As anyone with a minimal knowledge of both Chinese history and basic economics could have told either President Clinton or his successor, the Chinese would rake in dollars almost beyond counting. These dollars would furnish the ways and means not only for commercial development, economic expansion, and jobs but also for military expansion and--here is the Mr Big of things--purchasing foreign debt, particularly American debt.
Thus, in so far as the Chinese are feeling triumphant, it is a triumph which we have handed them on a Yankee greenback tray. The feeling of triumph need not last. That is the good news.
First of all, the Chinese are already demonstrating a degree of hubris which would have done Bush/Cheney proud. Whether engaging in espionage on an industrial scale in the West (as MI 5 has noted regarding the UK) or declaring "nyet" with a volume which the old Soviets never showed regarding Iran or waving rhetorical cudgels at the US without a thought as to possible responses, the Trolls are exhibiting hubris at an astronomical level.
The US is not without means to slow Chinese economic recovery. It is not without the capacity to impair the sale of Chinese origin goods in the US. Doing so would not only be salutary to the Trolls, it would do some good for American businesses particularly those few which still make things rather than provide services.
Sanctions against US companies who furnish equipment to Taiwan must be met on an augmented "tit for tat" basis. So also should lack of cooperation on Iran be countered by a similar response.
Now for the hard part. The administration and Congress must wean themselves from dependence on the Chinese debt purchasers. Considering the ability of the Fed and Treasury to create more inflationary "virtual" dollars, this should not be impossible. Catastrophic inflation may reside in either option, but the second approach at least lessens the capacity of the Trolls to limit American foreign policy freedom.
The Great American Public had a long, long spending spree due to China. The dues collector has come so we all will take a necessary hit in the short to mid-term, but that is better than having to bend our national and strategic interests to the dictates of the Trolls of Beijing.
Now, repeat after the Geek, "Buying Chinese is trading with the enemy." That may have been beyond the comprehension of three American presidents (including the incumbent,) but it should and must not be beyond ours.