Gordon Chang launches a pointed attack against what he calls "the real disease": China's Real Disease: Not Coronavirus. It's an ideological disease--Communism, he says. But even in the West there was an ideological disease that led to the globalization that has brought the world economy--linked in dependence on China--to its knees. Here is a thought provoking article that addresses some of the many issues involved in globalization: Beijing Fears COVID-19 Is Turning Point for China, Globalization. (Excerpts below)
In this article a link is provided to a "leaked" video of a "line" outside a hospital in Chongqing. Watch it and you'll see why I put "line" inside quotation marks. It's more like a river of people. You'll also want to reconsider Chicom assurances that the spread of Covid-19 has been halted. Chongqing is a megacity of 30 million people governed directly from Beijing. It's upriver from Wuhan, and just downriver from the rest of Sichuan province (80 million) with its capital of Chengdu (14 million). Imagine the amount of travel up and down the Yangzi river and those vast metro areas, and on to the sea at Shanghai (Metro Shanghai, 34 million).
With that in mind, here are excerpts, beginning halfway through the article. The first half deals with "Beijing's Propaganda War", also highly recommended, and the second half has the subtitle "The Stakes for China and Globalization":
Regardless of how much some governments and global voices praise China, Xi and the Communist Party care about dominating the propaganda war because the Wuhan virus has stood their nation on a razor’s edge. Xi’s own legitimacy is not merely at stake. His government is ferociously fighting to divert blame and attention, fearing that the world rightfully may utterly reassess modern China, from its technocratic prowess to its safety. Decades of a carefully curated global image may crumble if nations around the globe start paying attention to China’s lax public health care, incompetent and intrusive government, and generally less developed domestic conditions.
Xi’s fears are well founded, as a global reconsideration of China is long overdue. Legitimate criticisms and doubts about China’s governance and growth model were long suppressed by Chinese pressure and the willingness of many to buy into the Communist Party’s public line. Public shaming of foreign corporations, global influence operations, and “elite capture” -- all are policies Beijing has deployed to maintain China’s public image.
That carefully tended image is now cracked. Those concerned with global health issues may wonder why it is that China is wracked regularly by viral epidemics in addition to coronavirus, such as SARS, African Swine Fever, and avian flu (another outbreak is happening right now). Others may begin to look more carefully at China’s environmental devastation and the hundreds of thousands of premature deaths each year from air and water pollution.
On the trade side, many foreign corporations already have been reconsidering their operations in China, due to rampant intellectual property theft and rising production costs; now, they may seriously question how safe it is to continue to do business in China. Not only is the health of their employees at risk, but they no longer can be assured that China will be a stable supplier. If coronavirus becomes a seasonal phenomenon, as some experts predict, then even with a vaccine, new strains of the pathogen will always raise the specter of another out-of-control epidemic overwhelming the party-state’s capabilities and infecting the rest of the world.
More broadly, the pandemic of 2020 has brought doubts about globalization into the mainstream. Decades of open borders, unceasing intercontinental travel, study abroad, just-in-time inventory systems, and the like have created unexpected vulnerabilities in populations and economies thanks to unfettered openness. To worry about such weaknesses is not to adopt a Luddite reactionary stance, but to try and salvage the bases of the post-World War II global economic architecture.
Those who assumed that global markets were the optimal economic model and would always work, now have to consider whether globalization is the best system for dealing with pandemics like coronavirus, let alone old-fashioned state power plays like China imposed on Japan back in 2010, when it blocked the export of rare-earth minerals over territorial disputes in the East China Sea. Perhaps the biggest long-term economic effect of coronavirus will be on long-standing assumptions about global supply chains.
Because of the way the global economy has developed since 1980, to question globalization today is in large part to question the world’s relationship to China. As Sens. Marco Rubio and Tom Cotton have pointed out, America and the world have a prudential responsibility to reconsider their dependence on China.
The article ends with a section titled "Rethinking the Chinese Model and Globalization", from which I select just one paragraph:
The world never should have been put at risk by the coronavirus. Equally, it never should have let itself become so economically dependent on China. The uniqueness of the coronavirus epidemic is to bring the two seemingly separate issues together. That is why Beijing is desperate to evade blame, not merely for its initial incompetence, but because the costs of the system it has built since 1980 are now coming into long-delayed focus. Coronavirus is a diabolus ex machina that threatens the bases of China’s modern interaction with foreign nations, from tourism to trade, and from cultural exchange to scientific collaboration.
UPDATE: I can't embed it, but you can listen to Michael Auslin, the author of this article, being interviewed by Steve Hayward of Powerline at the link below. The interview goes about 45 minutes:
A Beat Down on China, with Michael Auslin
Hosted by Steve Hayward
With guest Michael Auslin