To whom does the 21st century belong?

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Poll: To whom does the 21st century belong?
The West (20)
71.43%
China (8)
28.57%
username358506
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#1
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#1
The West or China?
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Aj12
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#2
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I'd say neither. Eventually both blocs will be too large to dominate each other
this state of affairs will either lead to a cold war scenario or the two blocs working together for the common good. Assuming of course china's economic and demographic problems don't bring it crashing f down.

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R£SP£CT
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I'd say East v West is more accurate? China seem to be strengthening relations with Russia so perhaps banding them together? At this point in time I would say the West.
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perfectsymbology
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#4
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As long as China remains the workshop of the world then China. If that changes then all bets are off.
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#5
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(Original post by R£SP£CT)
I'd say East v West is more accurate? China seem to be strengthening relations with Russia so perhaps banding them together? At this point in time I would say the West.
There is no 'East', though. Most countries bordering China are scared of its potential, and it's eventual military power, which will be unrivaled in Asia (although there is one exception to this: Russia).

Whether or not Russia aligns itself with China, and becomes its junior partner à la UK/US 'special relationship', is debatable. I think once Putin is gone, and some level-headed person takes power, it will eventually be integrated within Europe, same with Belarus and Ukraine.
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#6
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(Original post by perfectsymbology)
As long as China remains the workshop of the world then China. If that changes then all bets are off.
Africa is set to become the workshop of the world, and it's in an even better geographical position to become one than China.

The question is whether or not China can innovate, maintain control of its population, and turn its economic might into military might.
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#7
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(Original post by Aj12)
I'd say neither. Eventually both blocs will be too large to dominate each other
this state of affairs will either lead to a cold war scenario or the two blocs working together for the common good. Assuming of course china's economic and demographic problems don't bring it crashing f down.

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I can't see both sides working together. For starters, China doesn't want the U.S. in the Pacific Rim, just like the U.S. doesn't want any peer competitor in the Western hemisphere. China will eventually issue it's own Monroe Doctrine, but the U.S. isn't about to bail on Japan, South Korea, Vietnam, the Philippines, Indonesia, et cetera - so conflict is pretty much inevitable.

And then there's Taiwan: what happens if China issues the island an ultimatum to test America's resolve?
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Masoudy
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#8
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#8
To Muslims colonising Europe
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St. Brynjar
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#9
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I think the question is best framed in terms of oceans. Simply put, the 21st Century belongs to the Pacific.
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Rakas21
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#10
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The west has a GDP of around $30tn doubling every 30 years roughly.

India-China has GDP of around $10tn but GDP doubles more or less every 15 years.

As St Brynar says, it is definitely the Pacific's century but India-China won't really match the west until 2050 or so and that's assuming they maintain growth and even then that only factors in nominal GDP and the military. The average westerner will still have a markedly higher GDP per capita and likely quality of life.

People mention Africa's bright future but while I do think it will improve, I'm not sure it will ever maximize its potential. There are simply so many things wrong and little sign of the massive cultural change seen in the likes of China in the 70's. Plus, Asians were historically as rich as westerners until the industrial revolution so I suspect Africa lacks some base cultural values which predispose it to wealth.
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perfectsymbology
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#11
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(Original post by Stalin)
Africa is set to become the workshop of the world, and it's in an even better geographical position to become one than China.

The question is whether or not China can innovate, maintain control of its population, and turn its economic might into military might.
I've heard guys on crack talk more sense than you do.
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#12
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(Original post by perfectsymbology)
I've heard guys on crack talk more sense than you do.
Your sources tell the truth.
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#13
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(Original post by Rakas21)
The west has a GDP of around $30tn doubling every 30 years roughly.

India-China has GDP of around $10tn but GDP doubles more or less every 15 years.

As St Brynar says, it is definitely the Pacific's century but India-China won't really match the west until 2050 or so and that's assuming they maintain growth and even then that only factors in nominal GDP and the military. The average westerner will still have a markedly higher GDP per capita and likely quality of life.

People mention Africa's bright future but while I do think it will improve, I'm not sure it will ever maximize its potential. There are simply so many things wrong and little sign of the massive cultural change seen in the likes of China in the 70's. Plus, Asians were historically as rich as westerners until the industrial revolution so I suspect Africa lacks some base cultural values which predispose it to wealth.
Such as?
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perfectsymbology
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#14
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(Original post by Stalin)
Your sauces tell the truth.
The sauce never lies.
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#15
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#15
(Original post by St. Brynjar)
I think the question is best framed in terms of oceans. Simply put, the 21st Century belongs to the Pacific.
That's pretty obvious, though (even if one can make an argument for the Indian Ocean).

The question is whether or not the West will remain the world's hyperpower in 2099 - or will China have caught up or even surpassed it by then?
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Rakas21
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#16
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#16
(Original post by Stalin)
Such as?
I can't pin point any right now, I just don't think its coincidental.

..

I would add we are all assuming a continuation of current trends. If the west cracks fusion and space mining the potential is there to really screw resource rich countries.
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#17
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(Original post by Rakas21)
I can't pin point any right now, I just don't think its coincidental.
So the fact that Europe had a massive head start over every other continent back in 11,000 BC because of its geography (climate, plants, animals), enabling Europeans to create the world's most lethal germs and steel because they were able to sustain huge populations instead of remaining hunter-gatherers, which allowed them to feed specialists who could focus their time on improving technology, develop steel, and thus guns, and defeat every people they came across is down to inherent cultural values that Europeans possess but Africans don't?

I would add we are all assuming a continuation of current trends. If the west cracks fusion and space mining the potential is there to really screw resource rich countries.
Good point. But surely the Chinese would be all over that too?
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St. Brynjar
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#18
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(Original post by Stalin)
That's pretty obvious, though (even if one can make an argument for the Indian Ocean).

The question is whether or not the West will remain the world's hyperpower in 2099 - or will China have caught up or even surpassed it by then?
Fair point. It's impossible to speculate that far ahead but I'll suggest that without serious demographic changes China won't ever surpass the USA as a power. I think the 21st century will see the rise of regional blocs acting as states - an Eastern European bloc led by Poland, an Asia-Pacific bloc led by Japan, an Arabic bloc led by Turkey. America will still be the dominant power but with a much weaker hegemony.

Can I press you for an argument favouring the Indian Ocean over the Pacific? Bearing in mind the only major difference would see India replacing the USA.
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Rakas21
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#19
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(Original post by Stalin)
So the fact that Europe had a massive head start over every other continent back in 11,000 BC because of its geography (climate, plants, animals), enabling Europeans to create the world's most lethal germs and steel because they were able to sustain huge populations instead of remaining hunter-gatherers, which allowed them to feed specialists who could focus their time on improving technology, develop steel, and thus guns, and defeat every people they came across is down to inherent cultural values that Europeans possess but Africans don't?
Good point. But surely the Chinese would be all over that too?
I'd not go that far back and I don't even know which ethnicity the Egyptians who spearheaded civilization were but the bulk of Roman Europe has ended up leading the world. Asia was also on a par for much of the last 1000 years bar 1700-1900. Sub-Saharan Africa has never being on a par.

Yes, its Africa that would be screwe
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username358506
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(Original post by Rakas21)
I'd not go that far back and I don't even know which ethnicity the Egyptians who spearheaded civilization were but the bulk of Roman Europe has ended up leading the world. Asia was also on a par for much of the last 1000 years bar 1700-1900. Sub-Saharan Africa has never being on a par.

Yes, its Africa that would be screwe
It's necessary to go that far back in order to understand how geography - luck, essentially - enabled some people to conquer others.

Civilization began in the Middle East, in modern day Iraq and Syria, in the fertile crescent, and because the climate is pretty warm, the extensive farming ruined the soil and it dried up. In search for better soils and climates, the locals traveled West and East, some went to Egypt and across North Africa, some through Turkey and into Europe, and others into modern day Iran. They spread their sedentary lifestyles, which was unheard of during the time, because most people around the world were constantly on the move in search of food, but because the people of the Middle East had goats and wheat, they were able to create communities, and live off of the best carb source and had protein and clothes from the goats.

This eventually spread to Europe, where the climate was even more favourable for large wheat farms, and thus cities could be built because they had enough food to feed the population. With large populations in a confined area came diseases, and over the course of time, Europeans became immune to these diseases, which, of course, Africans and South Americans were not. Additionally, the huge food surplus allowed people to be at the forefront of technology because they weren't forced to spend all day hunting. Guns, germs and steel were the difference between the coloniser and the colonised.

You mention Asia, and in particular China, but if you look at a map of the world, you can clearly see that China's climate isn't too dissimilar to that of Europe and North America because it lies roughly on the same lines of latitude as both continents. Also, the Chinese had rice as their source of carbs and chickens and fish for protein, all three of which can support large populations and allow people to focus on technology instead of hunting or gathering.

The Africans, like the Aboriginal Australians, unfortunately, did not start off with these advantages, and thus, in large part, remained hunter-gatherers until they were discovered by Europeans. Aboriginal Australians, for example, were still in the stone age when James Cook was doing his thing in Oceania. Furthermore, animals which have played an integral role in Eurasian dominance like horses, cows, et cetera, cannot live in sub-Saharan Africa because of the tsetse fly; they never even made it as far as Oceania; and were extinct in the Americas until Columbus and his crew brought them over.

Have you never wondered why it wasn't the Africans or Aboriginal Australians who discovered the rest of the world and colonised it? It's all down to geography.
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