Aug 21 2019

Yikes

Sometimes speculative fiction is just a little too on the nose:

The Republicans, coming to power …, wanted to do away with free trade. In a frenzy of nationalist rhetoric, they sought to replace globalization with protectionist tariffs. They wanted to pull up the economic drawbridge, just as their predecessors had after the Wall Street Crash of the 1920s. “Buy American” was their slogan. …
China’s response [to American demands] had been blunt, and memorable. Their delegate had stood and, in perfect English, told the American delegate: “Go fuck yourself!”
What had followed was six months of tit-for-tat legislation, each of the two great superpowers vying to outdo the other in sheer pettiness. By Christmas 2019, any pretence of being trading partners was gone. As, effectively, was globalization. The days of free trade were over. Protectionism was now the key. The world economy began its slow slide.
Son of Heaven (Chung Kuo #1) by David Wingrove, pp. 167–68, written in 2011

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