A rather interesting article in the FT titled, ‘China fears an emerging united front’. You can read it here.
A good article and must have been a difficult decision for a FT journalist to write and for the paper to publish it because from declaring Trump ‘isolated’ to now admitting (even if only reluctantly) that it is China that is getting isolated, must have been too big a pride to swallow. FT needs to be complimented for taking an ‘in-principle’ decision to swallow pride.
That said, they had decided to eat their pride but not swallowed their ego because the article (1) fails to acknowledge that how things unfolded could well have been a deliberate strategy on the part of President Trump – they cannot even get around to countenancing that possibility (2) falls back on the habit of ‘but, still…’.
For example, how does it matter what a ‘senior European banker’ thinks on this geopolitical strategy? He points to Trump’s tweets on WTO as evidence of Trump’s erratic behaviour and therefore, his inherent lack of trustworthiness. This goes back to point (1) above.
I can provide a counter-example to the banker’s ‘erratic behaviour’ argument. The American relationship with Mexico appeared to fall off the cliff but they have quietly
renegotiated NAFTA. Time and again, whether on Trump or on the larger issue of the responsibility for the rise of the ‘so-called’ populism and ‘nationalism’, conventional wisdom is failing to acknowledge that its priors, logic and its framework could simply be wrong. They refuse to admit that. The article is a faint contrarian evidence to the charge above and, to that extent, it is welcome. While it has succeeded in crossing that first hurdle, it has failed at clearing subsequent hurdles because it is marred by many other habitual bad biases.