Sunday, 22 May 2005

Reflections on China

I met and had a drink on Thursday with an old friend who has just returned from getting married in China. I'm just adding a link to the site of his wife, a Chinese artist working in Chongqing.

We reflected on the irony that having been decimated early on by Marxism, one of the most destructive intellectual exports of the west, the later infestations of western bad ideas have passed
China by. Thus Feng Qi, his wife, and the other students who studied at the Art College of Chongqing studied the great masters instead of the formaldehyde maunderings and daubings of elephant dung so loved by so many post-modern western 'artists.'

Chongqing itself is a city of some fifteen million on the upper reaches of the Yangtze River, and as my friend tells me a city of increasing prosperity. What he sees there and elsewhere in China -- happening right before his eyes -- is a living example of the phrase 'making money,' and a refutation of the idea that getting rich requires that one make someone else poor.

As Ludwig von Mises observed, “Far from the wealth of one implying the poverty of others, the reverse is true: one can only acquire wealth by serving others.”

Real wealth means the ability to make choices – the freedom to produce and freedom to trade what one has produced means that the choices available to individual Chinese expand almost by the minute. The Chinese are busy making themselves rich.


  1. I don't think most NZers could imagine how fast things are progressing in Asia. NZers are used to government speed of progress.

  2. Yes, I also think NZers are clueless, but also about how far ahead the USA is, not just parts of asia.

    Many here (and its not just the Left) seem to think OECD statistics of various kinds are more important than real world developments.


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