There’s a Separate Problem

The People’s Republic of China’s debt-fueled economic growth is threatening to hinder continued growth, even to cause serious contraction for the PRC’s economy. Much of that debt is local government off-the-books lending and, especially,

The deterioration of China’s real-estate market in the past three years meant local governments could no longer rely on land sales to real-estate developers, a significant source of revenue.

There’s another problem with that last, though, that makes off-the-books debt issuance even dicier for those local jurisdictions. The local governments own, or owned, only a finite amount of land, and so there is an upper bound to the amount they can sell to those developers. It’s very much akin to feudal Europe, where parents, over a very few generations would subdivide their land to give some to their eldest sons to use and profit from—and then ran out of land to subdivide. It was worse for the kings, who gave away royal lands to eldest sons and to nobles as rewards or loyalty purchases. The kings ran out of land, also.

Kings and local PRC governments could repossess those lands on one or another pretext, but such moves were, and are for the PRC governments, fraught with political danger. In the PRC’s case, the land limits, as much as any market for real estate, meant that borrowing against that collateral becomes even more risky, as the land collateral becomes smaller, along with the constructed buildings becoming expensive to hold on inventory pending sales that aren’t happening.

All the more Reason

The People’s Republic of China is continuing to manipulate the price of rare earths and of rare earth production and ore refinement. The nation is exploiting its current overwhelming monopoly of rare earths to hold those prices below the cost of their mining, production, and refinement elsewhere in the world, possibly below their own suite of costs.

That’s a security threat carefully aimed at the US and at Europe, since those rare earths are so critical to military equipment, computing equipment, and a host of other equipment throughout the general economy.

The US, Canada, regions in Europe, and the floor of the South China Sea each have ample supplies of the ores that, when exploited, would eliminate the PRC’s stranglehold on rare earths.

It’s time for the US and Europe, at the least, to suck up and go through the expense of developing our own rare earth resources and wrest that control away from our common enemy nation. It’s long past time to move to take back from the PRC the South China Sea, returning ownership of the islands to the nations with legitimate (if disputed among them) ownership and to return the waters to freely international status with their long-established economic zones which are held by non-PRC nations rimming the Sea. Regaining access to the Sea’s resources on and under the floor is one more critical reason for doing so.

Yes, He Was

The Wall Street Journal‘s editors messed this one up, badly, in two ways.

One is their blithe insistence that, as their headline put it, [t]he conspiracists on the right and left deserve to be ostracized. How do these august ones propose to identify conspiracists and their conspiracies in real time? The conspiracies painting the Hunter Biden laptop as Russian fakery were taken as gospel in real time. The conspiracies concerning a variety of Wuhan Virus vaccine side effects turned out to have considerable substance. The conspiracies concerning 2020 election cheating are turning out to have considerable substance.

And there’s this:

Congressman Mike Collins, Republican from Georgia’s 10th district, who sent a tweet on Saturday that “Joe Biden sent the orders.”
It’s hard to imagine a more incendiary message in the wake of an assassination attempt. Mr Collins was retweeting and amplifying a tweet that quoted President Biden’s remark last week that “I have one job, and that’s to beat Donald Trump. I’m absolutely certain I’m the best person to be able to do that. So, we’re done talking about the debate, it’s time to put Trump in a bullseye.”
Mr Biden was employing a metaphor, however inapt given our current political distemper.

Collins’ amplification certainly was untoward. However, Biden was not at all speaking metaphorically with his put a bullseye on Trump instruction to his minions. He was every bit as literal and direct as the Left’s and their Progressive-Democratic Party politicians’ claim that then-President and current Republican Presidential candidate Donald Trump’s 6 January 2021 speech to his supporters in which he told them to go to the capital and fight for their election rights was an incitement to riot and insurrection. What those wonders have ignored all along is that Trump explicitly enjoined his supporters to fight peacefully. Biden, on the other hand, issued no instruction to his supporters that they should be peaceful with their bullseye.

The editors very carefully ignored all of that.

A bonus editorial “error:”

Mr Collins is among those who think Mr Biden lacks the mental acuity to be President, but he then accuses him of masterminding a conspiracy.

There’s nothing at all inconsistent in that. Leading such a plot, were Biden actually doing so, would be pretty dispositive evidence of his incapacity.

Not Really

The Wall Street Journal‘s news section revealed its strong Leftist bias with its Thursday article centered on Progressive-Democrat President Joe Biden’s post-NATO summit solo press conference. Biden opened his presser with a few minutes of prepared remarks, reading from a teleprompter. The WSJ‘s news person opened her discussion of his supposedly extempore question and answer period, which followed his prepared remarks and went on for an hour, with this lede:

The president spoke for nearly an hour, answering questions off the top of his head, making some minor flubs but mostly seeming like a thoroughly different person than the candidate who appeared at the debate two weeks ago. Yet by the time he took the stage Thursday, it might already have been too late.

Actually, no. While the answers might have been done without notes, the questions he took were from a list of pre-approved questioners with their pre-approved questions. That list, incidentally, he held up for all to see, announcing that he had his list of questioners on whom he’d been advised to call.

On top of that, while no particular flub was all that serious—confusing the Republican presumed Presidential candidate nominee with his own Vice President and confusing the President of Russia with the President of Ukraine (which might have been a Freudian acknowledgment) each might have been embarrassingly amusing by itself—the accumulation of them over the course of his presser was more serious than that, and made the more so following, as they did, the increasingly frequent “flubs” he’s been making over the last several weeks.

The news writer, though, omitted to mention the most serious indicator of Biden’s mental decline. As the hour wore on [sic], he increasingly rambled in his answers, and increasingly farther afield from the subject of the question to which he was responding. Worse, Biden increasingly frequently lost his train of thought, even in mid-sentence. He increasingly often finished that interrupted thought with “Anyway,” then changed the subject of his lost thought or simply moved on to the next pre-approved questioner on his list.

This is a man no longer ready for prime time, especially when facing the leaders and honchos of our enemies around the world.

A Campaign Platform

I’ll be brief. The Progressive-Democrat Presidential candidate and current President Joe Biden, has a legislative and administrative history of

  • open to nonexistent borders, epitomized by his failed effort to codify the entry of 1.4 million or more illegal aliens per year (assessed at weekly intervals) before a President would be authorized to do anything toward closing our border
  • enormous inflation that’s only just abating, although the new price levels remain much higher than extant in the prior administration, with no sign those elevated price levels are abating
  • real wages falling relative to those extant in the prior administration as nominal wage increases, with some excursions to the topside, in the main have been smaller than price increase increases due to inflation
  • denigrating Israel as it fights for its survival against the terrorists Hamas and Hezbollah—and against their masters, Iran—while moving to protect Hamas by demanding cease fires that only benefit Hamas
  • encouraging continued butchery in Ukraine by slow-walking and blocking weapons Ukraine needs while coddling the invader barbarian as sanctuary against serious counterattack by Ukraine
  • appeasing Iran in its desperation to get Iran to let this administration back into the failed Iran nuclear weapons development deal
  • appeasing the People’s Republic of China regarding that nation’s seizure and occupation of the South China Sea and its threats against the Republic of China
  • meekly accepting PRC military and spy bases in Cuba, elsewhere in the Caribbean, South American, in even more meek abrogation of our erstwhile long-standing Monroe Doctrine
  • active deprecation of our energy production and energy independence through constant attacks on and blocks of coal, oil, natural gas—even liquid natural gas export—in favor of unreliable wind and solar farms

Those are just the high points; the full list is quite extensive.

This is why Biden and Harris won’t run on policy and how their policies for the next term would benefit Americans. Instead, their campaign platform is personal; it’s focused against a man. They don’t even argue against his policies, past or future—only that the man himself is bad.

This lack of a coherent, reasoned platform is instructive of the capacity of the Progressive-Democratic Party to govern.