David Harvey’s new book on Marx is really great, folks. Harvey explains how China saved global capitalism after the global economic crisis of 2008-9.
China consumes 60-70% of the world’s mineral resources. The countries that were exporting mineral resources and technology to China almost didn’t suffer from the recession. But why did China all of a sudden started gobbling up so many mineral resources?
China lost close to 30 million jobs in the 2008-9 recession because Americans stopped buying so much cheap crap from China. So the Communist leadership of the country started financing enormous construction projects to keep all those unemployed folks occipied. China ended up consuming gigantic quantities of cement and steel. This allowed world economy to ramp up again.
Of course, the only reason that the Chinese government managed to pull this off is that it’s an authoritarian regime. So authoritarianism saved global capitalism.
It’s of course fascinating that nobody ever mentions China, with its unbreathable air and exploding consumption of minerals, in discussions about the environment.