The Future is Already Here--It is Just Not Evenly Distributed

Nov 08 16:11 2018 Print This Article

When William Gibson would say that "the future is already here-it is just not evenly distributed," he was referring to how wealth and location determine one's access to technological advances (the future).  Yet it equally can apply to the US-Chinese relationship.

In a recent article in the Wall Street Journal, former Treasury Secretary Paulson seemed to express the views of many.  If neither the US nor China changes its course, an "iron curtain may soon descend."  Pssst...the future has happened.

It can be debated when the Rubicon was crossed.  Perhaps it was when Chinese officials had thought a deal had been struck with Treasury Secretary Mnuchin to buy more US goods to reduce its bilateral surplus with the US, only for President Trump to have torpedoed the agreement.   That taught China that power does not lie with the US Treasury.  Chinese officials also took that to mean that issue was not really the bilateral imbalance, but part of a larger attempt to stymie China's rise.  The Rubicon has been crossed. 

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About Article Author

Marc to Market

Marc Chandler has been covering the global capital markets in one fashion or another for more than 25 years, working at economic consulting firms and global investment banks. Chandler attended North Central College for undergraduate work, where he majored in political science and the humanities. He holds master's degrees from Northern Illinois University and University of Pittsburgh in American History and International Political Economy. Currently Chandler teaches at New York University Center for Global Affairs, where he is an associate professor. A prolific writer and speaker he appears regularly in the press and has spoken for, and is an honorary fellow of, the Foreign Policy Association. In addition to being quoted in the financial press daily, Chandler has been published in the Financial Times, Foreign Affairs, and the Washington Post. In 2009, Chandler was named a Business Visionary by Forbes. In 2009, his book, Making Sense of the Dollar, was published by Bloomberg Press and received a Bronze Award from Independent Publishers.

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