May 20th, 2010
01:47 AM GMT
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I love visiting the U.S., but while traveling there I sometimes get a little concerned about its future.  I find myself managing down my expectations - preparing for long lines at the airport, overpriced fares for flights and train rides, and spotty mobile phone service.  Meanwhile, travel in China gets more efficient and affordable by the day. And I can talk on my cell on the subway uninterrupted.

On a recent subway ride in Hong Kong I kept my phone in my pocket as my traveling companion was U.S. Commerce Secretary Gary Locke.  Secretary Locke is in China for several days with a delegation of American executives from the clean energy sector.  He's here to promote U.S. technologies, hoping the Chinese will adopt American wind turbines and solar panels.

China is throwing a mountain of money into sectors like green energy in the belief that it is laying the groundwork for superpower status.  Beijing has already overtaken the U.S. in renewable energy investments.  It's earmarked billions on new airports, rail lines and highways – an ambitious investment in infrastructure that’s an order of magnitude more than anything being committed to rebuild the U.S. Sure, China is starting from a lower base, but it's moving ahead faster than a speeding bullet train to become a more efficient, competitive rival to America.

In a decade, which country will be the better bet - the U.S. or China?

soundoff (98 Responses)
  1. Mr. Shonan

    China is going to break up into a whole bunch of countries. The US is not.

    May 20, 2010 at 2:33 am |
  2. David

    While China has many issue it needs to deal with before it can attain the true admiration, trust, and respect of the industrialized nations of the world, it certainly does appear poised to gain the upper hand over he US. As an expat living in China for 7 years, I have seen the lifestyle here grow by leaps and bounds. China already holds many advantages over the US, while there is still a fading legacy of the old communist regime.
    By contrast, the US is held hostage by wealth-extracting crooks on Wall Street, self-serving lobbyists on Capitol Hill, and a racist, ignorant, religious, and violent electorate, not even to mention fighting a war on two fronts, which has deprived the US of so much wealth it could have reinvested into far more productive causes. For the amount the US has spent fighting two wars, it could have built an alternative energy infrastructure from coast to coast, relieving our dependence on foreign oil, obviating the need for the war.
    I fear my homeland is stuck in a quagmire from which it may never recover. And no, Tea-Party goers, by "quagmire" I'm not referring to the "Family Guy" character. Please look up the dictionary definition.

    May 20, 2010 at 2:56 am |
  3. American Expat

    Twenty years ago, when I emigrated from the USA, the handwriting was clearly on the wall for America.

    However, I think Peter on the television show _Family Guy_ described America most succinctly when he said, "The **former** greatest nation in the world".

    May 20, 2010 at 3:02 am |
  4. RLH

    I am an American citizen living in Korea. I have been to China many times since I was first there on a Fulbright program in 2004. In just the past 6 years, I have have been to China at least once a year. Everytime I visit, I am awed by the growth and development of the country's infrastructure, i.e. new railways, roads, bridges, etc... I also travel back and across the USA every summer. Contrastingly, I am appalled by the lack of development particularly in areas of extreme need, i.e. railways, roads, bridges, etc... in exactly the areas of infrastructue where China is exceeding and succeeding. I know American's have a strong "can do" attitude, but our nation's leaders either do not understand or refuse to do whatever it takes to keep us as an economic powerhouse and future leader of the world. I call on everyone in America to wake up, speak up, stand up and demand that our government and each individual American acts now to improve our infrastructure before we fall even further behind other countries. I do not think we should just think that someone else will solve the problem or even depend on the government to do it... we, the people, need to lead for the sake of our future and the future generations of Americans. Our fore-fathers had fore-sight... today, it appears as though we are only focused on the now forgetting the need to prepare for both the challenges and opportunities that lay ahead.

    May 20, 2010 at 3:08 am |
  5. bob schoos

    I am still convinced that President Obama understands, better than any other political leader in America, the need for the US to remain competitive, and for that to focus on alternative energy resources. China, back in 2008, decided that the future was going to be green and has committed colossal resources to take the lead. Only the Republican obstructionists and their mouth piece, the FOX channel knaves, have so far prevented the right measures to be adopted by the government to take meaningful actions. This failure will only accelerate our demise.

    May 20, 2010 at 3:28 am |
  6. Erik

    "In a decade, which country will be the better bet – the U.S. or China?"

    20 years ago, the answer would have been the U.S. Now, people here just don't have the gumption to do much of anything. Most folks here would rather complain all day long than spend 5 minutes fixing a problem. The defeatist, lazy bum, not-my-problem, entitlement attitude is now epidemic and THAT is why China will kick our rears.

    May 20, 2010 at 3:32 am |
  7. Strangewalk

    Have lived for a long time in both countries. Anything having to do with services, China has the US beat by a million miles, no comparison, and Americans have little choice but to digest poisoned processed food, the typical Chinese diet is far superior, healthier and more delicious–these are big things.

    However, Chinese cities are clogged with gosh-awful pollution, the traffic is completely barbaric and very dangerous, and virtually all urban dwellers have no options but to inhabit souless, block apartment buildings of 20 to 60 stories.

    In America there is more fear of crime, but in China you're more likely to be a victim, though it probably won't involve violence, and there are no guns, only knives.

    In America there's still a lot more freedom and options for people willing to work hard, but there's a sense of pessimism toward the future. In China there's an strong spirit of optimism that's energizing, and a feeling that everything will get better.

    I actually like both places and think that for sure China could be the next superpower of the world and own the 21st century....but something just tells me it won't work that way.

    May 20, 2010 at 3:50 am |
  8. John Donne

    It goes without saying, even though I would love it not to happen, China has a grand future.

    May 20, 2010 at 3:59 am |
  9. ryque

    why does everyone equate china's progress to us' ass-kicked? does it neccesarily meant that when china one day does become a superpower, the us will be oppressed and bullied by him? maybe that is most americans' perception of a superpower's perks, they believe that the rest of the world, china included, should accept their oppressing and bullying these past many years.

    May 20, 2010 at 4:43 am |
  10. Jacques

    I am not impressed by buildings and structures. Often it's just a décor. Qatar : superpower of tomorrow ? I think it's no great future for China. That's my feeling.

    May 20, 2010 at 4:55 am |
  11. CanChi

    Mr. Shonan, what, at the rate it is moving, East LA would be independent in 5 years or less, if you allow a referendum there. Wait, the US would be in 2 halves, USA (United States of Anglos), and USL (United States of Latinos)

    May 20, 2010 at 4:57 am |
  12. Andreas Stockholm

    I often hear people say that China will eventually split into several countries but I'm not so sure about that. If the current development and modernization is not handled properly then this might happen but only if it furthers the rift between the wealthy and the poor. Modern infrastructure is nice and good but serves little purpose if it doesn't help the large majority of the people.

    If China starts to develop a welfare system that truly helps rural communities and allows the poor farmer the same medical care and security as a government worker in Beijing then China may soon become the envy of the world, but if they instead chose the US way of defining and limiting everything based on personal wealth then a split is inevitable.

    We shouldn't compare ourselves too much to China especially as western democracies because in reality there's no way you can compare the efficiency between the two systems. Democracy is a self inflicted state of chaos and often continuous status quo paralysis but it is still the least bad of all systems. :-)

    May 20, 2010 at 4:57 am |
  13. Beway

    Mr. Shonan, "China is going to break up into a whole bunch of countries. The US is not".

    China is united as a nation, for the last 2,000 years. If you need to fart, please go somewhere else.

    May 20, 2010 at 5:14 am |
  14. Murugan

    Dear Americans, Self-delusion in the face of facts is folly. You are still living in the glory of the cold war victory. China is not Soviet Union. It has a Billion + people, Billions in foriegn exchange, an economy going, people who are proud and nationalist and very soon will sit at top of the world pecking order. And yes America will borrow money and send it as aid to Pakistan. Borrow and spend on building hi tech defence projects. God save America.

    May 20, 2010 at 5:25 am |
  15. Neeraj Parashar

    I ask a few simple questions, which will elicit the future of any country?

    1. What is the future of children in USA? where there is no future of insitutions like families.

    2. Is after 100 years of supreamacy, can all the citizens get basic fundamental rights like education, health, food, housing and livelihood?

    3. Let us discuss India, it was looted by invaders in each 50 years in the last 1500 years. And every time it got stand up with double might and character. This time as well. Can us do? forget china, they have got an aging population and could have a future like japan who have got a lazy generation which got americanized.

    4. What is american values and beliefs, where is common on streets in governance.

    5. One Person question, please prove that USA is not having a plutocractic political system?

    May 20, 2010 at 5:36 am |
  16. testicular

    China has no concept of the words "human rights". Their government does not respect the freedom of information, freedom of speech, freedom of commerce, freedom of mind, freedom of culture, or even freedom of sexuality. It's a very racist and segregated country as well......who cares if their cell services cut off less lol....i really couldn't careless. ike Saudi Arabia :-D

    May 20, 2010 at 5:43 am |
  17. Something

    Someone needs to take a first year statistics class, extrapolating recent data into the far future is a pretty dangerous game. Let me take you back 30 years and you could have read pretty much this exact same article, just replace China with Japan. Fast forward 30 years and while Japan is still a major player, but nowhere near the powerhouse a lot of people thought it to be. And China's economy is EXACTLY like Japans, right down to the bad loans the government is doing everything in its power to try to hide.

    The simple truth is(and this holds true for pretty much every export economy on earth), playing catch-up is a lot easier than taking the lead and there really hasn't been an export driven economy, save for perhaps Germany, that really has been able to figure out how to "take the lead". Once China "borrows" pretty much all the wests technology, there won't be any room for them to grow.

    I have worked with a lot of Chinese scientists, and to say the quality was horrendous is an insult to the word horrendous. Chinese scientific enterprise is pretty much non-existant, a bunch of people trying to copy off of someone else and hope they don't get caught. Want proof? There has been exactly 1 nobel prize(shared between 2 scientists) won by mainland Chinese scientists in physics, and a whopping 0 in Chemistry or Medicine.

    Don't believe the China hype, I wouldn't even be surprised if their government is cooking the books like a Wall Street trader on a caffeine high.

    May 20, 2010 at 5:43 am |
  18. Ravi

    Definitely China is moving ahead in strategic way, making progress not only on Infrastructure but RnD, training engineers, businessmen/women etc and moving up the food chain pretty quickly. However, US is matured democracy with incredible diverse talent pool, and maybe legacy but functioning infrastructure. I would still bet with US.

    May 20, 2010 at 5:48 am |
  19. Leo

    I am a Chinese. In my opinion, China won't be the great one in the world not only current but also in the future. So, if you are an American please just keep relax. Two years ago, you faced a economic crash and it made you uncomfortable. But , at that time China didn't cause the Chinese gov. use the foully way to collect the money from the resident in order to let the gov. official corrupt. As you know, whatever how strong the country it is, it will exhausting some day if continue in that way. I DO FORETELL: China will take a flap and the country will fall in chaos in the next few years. Trust me!!

    May 20, 2010 at 5:49 am |
  20. Steve

    Beway: sort of. A unified China of contiguous formal borders, or a collection of races and cultures under different arrangements of power and sovereignity?

    Anyways, I think there's two things going on. One is that China is very large in every way, and all the necessary conditions for economic expansion have fallen into place, and we are watching that ascent.

    However, something I disagree with personally is that things like a sparkling metro or tall skyscrapers or pseudo-utopian urban lifestyle created by powerful government really represents a step towards prosperity. Rather they are simply luxuries that it generates. Some of it could be a waste of money. And it won't look as nice in 60 years either.

    China's wealth has been generated by its capitalists. The government has its role in protecting the rule of law and creating a society in which trade can thrive in. However that government can overstep its boundaries, from things like taking land for grand projects to censoring the media.

    The US is 1/10th the size of China so naturally when China reaches our level of per-capita prosperity it will also be so much larger that us. But will it be as dynamic in the long run if the rules of economics are to be considered?

    Certainly there should be public investment in green energy, with problems like global warming, and the sense that painful adjustment could be lessened and the stakes for the winners and losers of a free-market peak oil scenario wouldn't be as big-its better for the welfare of the greater good. But who knows, with ambitious but misguided plans China could end up constructing the world's largest grid to go totally obsolete all at once, while the US slowly but steadily builds as private companies that represent the cutting edge and relate to real market demand as opposed to politics construct new infrastructure.

    May 20, 2010 at 5:52 am |
  21. Steve

    EDIT- china is 4x bigger than the US in population

    May 20, 2010 at 5:53 am |
  22. milton

    The comments on China breaking up into small nations are baseless. I am not sure people who make these kinds of comments have actually been in or visited China. I agree on several key points of this article, but I am not as optimistic as the author on the future of China. I have traveled and stayed in China for relatively long duration due to my job requirements. It did not take long for me to learn the massive corruption and social injustice that the ordinary citizens of China face on daily basis. No matter how hard the top leaders in China try to eradicate these problems, as long as the communist party has the monopoly in political arena, these problems would never go away. For a nation to thrive, it takes more than infrastructure building. People’s trust and confidence in the government are not as visible as the physical progress mentioned in the article, however, these are absolutely essential. The Chinese government is very deficient in these aspects. To me, it is not surprising. After all, how could a nation claim to be “Communism Regime”, while its social and economic policies are far more capitalist than number of western nations, such as Canada and France?!

    May 20, 2010 at 5:57 am |
  23. JonC

    don't judge china based on what you see in Hong Kong.
    Hong Kong is way ahead of most of China. 50% of Chinese FDI in the 90s originated in HK. They're catching up fast though.

    May 20, 2010 at 6:15 am |
  24. Black Flag

    No doubt China is developing very quickly, but I find it funny that the writer is using her experience in Hong Kong to talk about the difference with the US. Hong Kong is hardly like the rest of China. Try coming up to Beijing and see how it compares? Cell phone service in Beijing is way more spotty than what I had back in the US, and the subways, although very cheap and efficient, have a lot to still be desired when you compare it to countries like Japan (a fair comparison as the US doesn't utilize subways at the same rate). Highways and streets in the US are planned and designed far more efficiently to allow for smoother traffic conditions. Internet service in China is slower than most of the world (check broadband speed results on the internet) and restricted. Yes, China is growing rapidly, but given that it's 2010, they are behind in many areas.

    May 20, 2010 at 6:17 am |
  25. LPM

    Um, don't you guys remember hearing this story with Japan? They were going to take over the world all through the 80s, and then they had an economic bust from which they never recovered. It takes something like 20 Chinese people to screw in a lighbulb (I have lived here for 6 years). If you are worried about China taking over the world, you don't have to worry that it is going to be *anytime soon.*

    May 20, 2010 at 6:28 am |
  26. henry

    i 'm Chinese.I think it's no great future for China.

    May 20, 2010 at 6:48 am |
  27. BSTeh, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia

    China would do well to heed the teachings of their ancients which is what is troubling the world today – the imbalance between Heaven, Earth and Man. This imbalance caused by the activities of Man has resulted in great disharmony throughout the world. There are sufficient incidences of the wrath of Heaven throughout the globe in recent years to stand witness to that.

    We attribute all these worrying changes in weather and climate to deforestation, burning of fossil fuel, pollution, global warming etc etc. If these are necessary costs for the survival of Humankind, then we need not worry too much for long about Global Leadership, Regional Hegemony, Economic dominance, Per-capita income, Trade deficits.

    All these are the attributes and manifestations of man's ego, greed and baser instincts. These are not Nature's ways. The mighty dinosaurs became extinct while the timorous rodents flourished. If the world then belongs to the meek, why then are we so enamored with war and conflict, domination and supremacy, greed and envy?

    If the world should end soon as predicted by the Incas, the North American Indians, the Bible, Nostradamus and so on, then why don't we just take it easy and concentrate on living it out in peace and tranquility. After all extinction is the ultimate equaliser whatever the colour of your skin or the length of your hair or the depth of your pockets.

    Why should China be concerned with all these values? Would it not be better if every country of the world channel their energy and resources to educating their people on the need to reduce consumption, increase conservation, check pollution and realize the need to slow down global warming and promote ecological balances and harmonize the existence of Man and the power of Nature.

    May 20, 2010 at 7:34 am |
  28. Manaf

    I think it is still not too late for America. If they stop the bloody wars, stop their crazy funding to Israel, Pakistan etc, if they don't build up more weapons and foucus on the development of the country, they could still be the number 1. China will be the greatest threat in terms of economy but Super Power is something extra. China does not have the habit of bullying others and peeping their nose into other countries, so it is bit difficut for them to get used to these to become a super power. It is only America which can do this since all their leaders have this natural tendency of focus on other countries except America. Nobody else can twist stories like them and use the media for their advantage. So America still has a chance to sustain their position if they can swift their policy.

    May 20, 2010 at 7:48 am |
  29. Lucy

    As a Chinese student and from my understanding of China and its people, to be honest, I don't believe we'll catch up with the US with at least 20-year or maybe even more.
    All the people in China knew for sure that China has a huge problem in politics like curruption. It's a consequence of repid development(guess rapid development isn't that good )
    Gap between the wealthy and poor also drew public attention.
    Anyway, it takes time to fix all this and China is not a threat to the US. I hope the US could export Tech to China, green tech at least, Environment in China is getting worse since China become the manufacture center of the world. We need tech knowledege to deal with enegery ,environmental deterioration, etc.

    May 20, 2010 at 7:57 am |
  30. David

    Speaking of internet, the Chinese gov't SERIOUSLY needs to give up the internet censorship thing. Blocking sites such as youtube speaks of a terrible insecurity.
    Such personality flaws are part of chinese culture: Insecurity, self-destructive face-saving pride, and thinly veiled opportunism. Upon reconsideration, can such a nation rise to sustainable greatness?
    I also have to call China on their younger generations, who are completely devoid of critical thinking skills, and completely brainwashed.

    May 20, 2010 at 7:58 am |
  31. jupi

    I always wonder why most polemics about will china replace usa initiated by american media? If I have business in infrastructure or green tech in usa, i will very happy with these polemics.

    May 20, 2010 at 8:00 am |
  32. JAFO

    The chinese are coimg to america for sure. the question is that we are ready for them?today?

    May 20, 2010 at 8:23 am |
  33. Jilly

    China has invested hugely in infrastructure which everyone knows is followed by development. But it just might be a facade. America is much more transparent, with the help of its media. While China might be hiding its Achilles heel. Another point to be noted is that America is still the land of innovation. Although the patents and intellectual property rights do seem to shift hands with China in exchange for a handful of cash.

    May 20, 2010 at 8:27 am |
  34. CHINA


    May 20, 2010 at 8:47 am |
  35. Mark

    As an expat living in France, but traveling to China quite frequently, I am often disappointed on my return trips back to the U.S. Our citizens have become even more ignorant to the rest of the world – focus on issues that are solely religious or value based – and have limited knowledge about the rest of the world.

    I heard an economics professor at Insead explain once the only reason that China's growth is limited. It's the same in most "underdeveloped" countries – corruption. Once China gets this under control, there are no limits. The other issue China needs to get around is that of intellectual property theft (reality or perception).

    If America doesn't wake up, it will go the way of the Romans and other dominant countries throughout history. The only difference today is the threat of nuclear weapons and the pride that might prevent constraint. If the U.S. can't capture a Bin Laden, restrain the Iranians, or control even it's banking sector, how can it ever imagine staying ahead of the Chinese?

    May 20, 2010 at 8:47 am |
  36. George

    since 911, we created policies and plans for the WAR on Terror, and put all of our focus, resource, and power towards it without putting much focus on anything else (such as staying competitive against other countries, infrastructure, etc..) We have created the largest government entity in the history of the US (DHS) which employees 250K people focussed on Terror watch list. After nearly 9 years, we have had two wars, hundreds of thousands of innocent killed, and not only have we failed to stop terrorism, but we have managed to spread the fire far more.

    If the US maintains course with our existing policy and focus, we will loose our competitive edge and super power status exponentially fast.

    May 20, 2010 at 8:48 am |
  37. A.M.Alves

    As a Brazilian, and like many others in my country, I always have great admiration for America and for the hardwork American people in particular. However, I note that in recent decades, U.S. corporations gave up on creating manufacturing jobs, transferring them to China, only seeking to immediate profits. Industry and agriculture have always been the mainstay of American success, along side of scientific research and made the great nation US still is. It is very important for the democratic world that America, and its wonderful American people, keeps the lead.

    May 20, 2010 at 8:59 am |
  38. jd

    As an American living in Mainland China (Hong Kong shouldn't count as China) right now, America will still be better in a decade without a question. Horrid pollution, wide spread poverty, overcrowded, appalling health care, growing divide between rich and poor, inflation, over-growing housing prices; these issues will be unsolved in a decade. Throwing a bunch of money at a couple of big construction projects does not instantly equal a great country, it is a start. China also spends all the money on these construction projects in only a few of the more built up areas, Shanghai area, Beijing, Guangdong; the country side remains as poor and undeveloped as ever. How does it help their people if Beijing spends 10 billion dollars on a world fair or Olympics or builds a light rail system in Guangdong provience? If anything they should be building hospitals, schools, and highways for the rural areas.

    May 20, 2010 at 9:01 am |
  39. Elie

    I don't see myself watching chinese movies anytime soon, or listening to chinese music or driving any chinese cars (I don't eat any chinese food either, but that's another story, people seem to love chinese food), so cultural impact is still far away. Plus, China is very, very dependent on the American consumption, so any slump in the American consumer wallet will effect the Chinese income. Nevrtheless, they have a great governance model whiched allowed the government to channel investments (private and public) as it wishes allowing for great growth, at the same time allowed competition, open market and personal wealth. They are gaining an edge in technological innovation (which is a very important component of any super power), but they are a bit behind the likes of Intel, Google, Apple, Cisco and so on.

    May 20, 2010 at 9:03 am |
  40. Bill Simpson

    It will be a long time before people from all over the world try to move to China, like they do to the United States. Let them become the world policeman. They will find out how fast they will go bankrupt. You can't put a price on political freedom. Sitting where it is, no matter what happens, America will be just fine. China is too overcrowded and polluted. The climate is poor. The western half is a virtual wasteland. I would rather live in a crumbling USA, than a new China. How many billionaires do you see moving to China? Not many.

    May 20, 2010 at 9:10 am |
  41. Mike Thompson

    It`s the way of the world, No empire has remained supreme, the USA replaced Britain and for the past 100 years has imposed her will on the world (Making the same mistakes as the British did before them).

    Now it`s the turn of China to impose her will, it`s going to be interesting and it`s already started, as the British had to accept a declining influence (and it`s not enjoyable) so will the American people.

    May 20, 2010 at 9:17 am |
  42. rosalind smith

    I have news for everyone, China is a "SUPER POWER"!

    May 20, 2010 at 9:18 am |
  43. GUNGHO

    Leaders like Obama/Pelosi/Reid will surly hasten our downfall to
    become a 3rd world country.
    having lived in China for 8 years and still go back to visit, you can see the pride the Chinese take in their country, and at home, our eduction system is in tatters – and the average American just don't cares – or is to stupid to know anyhow. driving SUV's and eating big Mac's is
    their only goal ?
    as a Veteran that fought and bleed for this country – I just can not see any reverse to this trend ? the good doers and low lives are taking over -

    May 20, 2010 at 9:22 am |
  44. Ed

    I found the GOP opposition to some sort of universal health care in the United States very interesting.

    Surely any right-wing wants a strong nation. And surely in the context of a growing China – regardless of whether or not that growth entails future superpower status – the US is better off with a healthier workforce.

    I also read here, on CNN, about the US Army suggesting health problems related to over-eating have become a national security issue in the United States.

    This is just an aside, but I find it interesting how the GOP opposes things that are "socialist" but also necessary for continued American power.

    May 20, 2010 at 9:24 am |
  45. Antje

    Mr shonan, The US is already a bunch of regions who may very well split up one day. The same for Canada.
    Also USA and Canda are on other people's land which was unlawfully taken from these original people.

    May 20, 2010 at 9:28 am |
  46. Samson

    USA has gone throught this before. Japan, Russia, etc. posed challenges to America but eventually who prevailed? Each time USA emerged victorious. What matters most is not a high adrenalin, exciting economic strategy but a consistent freedom centred liberal economic set up. America has put its house in order, well, better than China. China has a long way to go before it can have consistent and sustainable economic growth. Also America has withstood many lows and come out strongly. China has not been so resilient. At least we have not seen China take such big hits and rebounding. In 20 years it will be still America that will be leading possibly with a new challenger!

    May 20, 2010 at 9:32 am |
  47. Credwards

    It should be noted that China is able to do these things on such a scale and much quicker than the U.S in part because of China's political and economic system. Cheap labor is more available and under little regulation and oversight, while money can be spent without the need for a vote or congressional committee's approval. Similar green initiatives, let alone infrastructure initiatives, take much more time in the U.S.

    I should also add that Hong Kong doesn't compare well with mainland China (I'm in HK as I write this). Having been everywhere from Beijing to Dali, Kunming and Shanghai, I can say that there is a huge difference in modernization. While Shanghai may have great cell phone service and modern transportation, much of China is still pre-modern with poor internet availability, shotty infrastructure, horrid pollution and a very low living standard (such as the village of Baihua I stayed in). Just worth putting into context.

    May 20, 2010 at 9:40 am |
  48. david

    This isn't an article of anything more than you complaining. Move to Hong Kong then. Enjoy that.

    May 20, 2010 at 9:53 am |
  49. JacktheMan

    How many chinese are desperate to emigrate to the US?
    How many chinese students want to get into US universities?
    How many chinses want a green card?

    How many americans want to emigrate to china?
    How many americans students dream of studying in china?

    Where can you own a house, swimming pool and green garden?
    Where do you have to live in a soulless apartments in a 20 floor
    apartment building?

    Which country is chocked by mind numbing pollution?
    Which cities are chocked by millions and millions of people wherever you go?

    In which country do people push and shove and have no idea about waiting your turn or common courtesy?

    In which country do people grog and spit on the street and at the workplace?

    After living in both countries for many years, I prefer the US over china any time.

    May 20, 2010 at 10:04 am |
  50. Uger

    It doesn't count if your cell phone works on a Chinese "subway" when that "subway" is clearly running above ground!

    May 20, 2010 at 10:14 am |
  51. Neeraj Parashar

    China has XiagXang Province over India intruded by islamic radicals for seperation, Tibet is fighting for autonomy, Tiwaan have also developed equally with china(sort of pizza theory), then they got HongKong and Makau to sea port. Then main land bejing and its urban development. China is taking advantage of such gains and in the course of political consolidation.

    Still their people are not having liberty needed for a free country. Hence, a country with iron curtain could rarely be world power.

    May 20, 2010 at 10:26 am |
  52. Wee Wee

    Unfortunately the USA is hell bent on relieving themselves into a desert and still hoping a garden will grow there. Having been involved in two wars for a period longer than the second world war, do you really think the USA will still be economically competitive after this huge drain on your economy. It also appears that, at the present pace this war will most likely go on for another 10 years (Soviets were in Afghanistan for 20). So all that remains is for another country to bide their time and grow their own economy instead of waging pointless wars and then just step up and take over the world's economy when the time is right. It doesn't even have to be China. By this time your national debt will be a monster, your currency will mean nothing and by just looking at the attempted terrorist attacks on your home soil over the past few months alone, your citizens will be living in such fear that it may paralyze further economic growth anyway.

    Use your logic, you don't fight wars on secret terrorist organisations by invading whole countries, you do it by silent covert operations of specialist military personnel. The American people have stopped such things before by marching in the streets and making your voices heard, just think about Vietnam and Racial segregation, do it again, make them listen peacefully – It just seems to be pride keeping your young people far away at war, and for what?

    May 20, 2010 at 10:29 am |
  53. John

    And where did China get all of the money for these improvements? The only reason why China's economy is the way it is now is because they didn't want the country to end up like the Soviet Union in which it almost did with the Tianneman Square uprising.

    May 20, 2010 at 10:35 am |
  54. John

    We (the US) have more Nukes. We win!

    May 20, 2010 at 11:03 am |
  55. Lance

    Asia likes to build. America prefers to destroy. That's it.

    May 20, 2010 at 11:09 am |
  56. Ken

    I am chinese, China will never be like US, she is still lacking far behind. The local goverments are corrupted and the people in China are like bonded slaves, no human rights, no freedom of speech and no freedom of thoughts. Chinese goverment bullies its own people.

    May 20, 2010 at 11:10 am |
  57. Zaki Uddin Wali

    US is doing only talks, the main thing is to make the price of every thing lower as low as free for every one and to do that there is a lot to do for the US coz there's a lot of disorganised issues there, obama is fighting with his heart even with his mind but his way out is in the answer to think out of the box the whole world will turn into United State if he sort it out in time
    which he has very less like all the presidents (4 years or 8 years). Think fast obama there a lot for you.

    May 20, 2010 at 11:16 am |
  58. Varun

    This Japan comparison is idiotic and shows these people don't know economics.
    Reason: Population,
    Barring a collapse China's population is enough for it to sustain the pace and overtake any country, Japan lacked that.

    More importantly, see the worlds history, India and China have always had more than 20-25% EACH of worlds GDP share throughout till India got raped by the British and China followed soon.
    Its only a matter of time before normalcy is returned
    Both these countries have been most populous through history.
    Having said that, i only predict they being economically superior, militarily or politically i am not wiling to comment.

    May 20, 2010 at 11:20 am |
  59. Abhishek, UAE.

    I think the writing is very much on the Wall: US has the worlds largest debt and China has the world's largest savings

    I was truly amazed when I visited China last year, the progress was simply frightening !!!

    I think the US Adminstrations should stop worrying so much about dictating the world and focus on internal issues, otherwise, it won't be long before we see the the Soviet Union of America Collapse...

    May 20, 2010 at 11:34 am |
  60. Aaref

    No country, in the history of the world, has managed to maintain it's supremacy indefinitely. The world has a seen a westward advancement of world power over the years. In the 19th century it was Europe. USA may be a superpower in terms of weapons and its penchant for exporting their version of democracy to the world, but as an economic power, China is bound to takeover the US. With more than half a billion more people than the US, its ever expanding manufacturing base, and a slowly but surely rising standard of living, it is inevitable. It also has an imposed discipline, call it dictatorship, that countries like India lack. Once the prosperity of the coastal regions start making their inroads to the hinterlands, the recent uprests that we have witnessed in Tibet and Xinjian will be less in the short run. In the long run, who knows? As a Bangladeshi who have been visiting the US and China over the past 25 years, the changes in the China are literally eye popping, sometimes too flashy with nueveau riche overtones, but still no less than remarkable. Whether China can make the international mark with its intellectual might in science, literature, and free thought as the US has, well, I am not so sure about that. If I have a choice between the two countries, I will definitely choose the US. AT least, any criticism of Obama, whether public or private, won't make me disappear in the Chinese gulag.

    May 20, 2010 at 11:37 am |
  61. matthew Friedman

    I am from the NYC metro area and have been living in Shanghai with my family for 9 months. The city is very clean, the subways are spotless and punctual. The roads are in much better condition than NYC area. And the architecture, including many Green buildings like Shanghai Tower (which I am watching them build through my office window) is futuristic. And yes, cell phones almost never cut out and there are no long lines in the airports. That said, the scale of development can only be likened to America during the Industrial Revolution. They are/will be building 78 Nuclear Power Plants, 800 airports and the most advanced high speed rail system in the world.

    May 20, 2010 at 11:42 am |
  62. Josh

    I am a Chinese and lived in the US for a few years. The US is better is because more people have Faith. If the people here do the same as many Chinese people do–don't believe anything and only trust themselves. There will be no, at least not big difference between these two countries in the future.

    May 20, 2010 at 12:00 pm |
  63. Gaijin

    My fellow Americans are sleeping – or busy telling themselves how wonderful they are. Meanwhile, the Chinese are very busy taking over the planet.

    One day soon, Americans are going to wake up and find that all the television programming and newspapers are all in Mandarin.

    What are they going to do about it? Complain, of course.
    That's what Americans do best.

    May 20, 2010 at 12:05 pm |
  64. Dan

    About 200 years ago, Napoleon returned to France from visiting China and said, "That is a sleeping dragon. Let him sleep! If he wakes, he will shake the world." Now the dragon is awake and the shaking has begun.

    However, China faces many obvious challenges that do not suggest it's going to be all plain sailing and constant progress. The bulk of China's massive population is rural and lives at a level of poverty all but unknown in the US. In China, a tiny political, military and business elite currently runs the whole show, but for how long? A draconian Communist dictatorship, rampant capitalist self-interest and a disgruntled poor majority do not make easy bedfellows.

    May 20, 2010 at 12:10 pm |
  65. Dmitry Kh

    Hello, Americans,
    First of all, you should congratulate yourselves for seeing China's today power and progress. I remember 80-ies when living in USSR I listened to "undermining western voice" – american radiostation Svoboda (Liberty). Narrator openly said about the ways America used to "change mind" of other countries to cope with spreading communism. If regyme couldn't be changed directly then US thought out something special. For China this special was "Progressive engagement" – steady involving China into western economy and values. Through investments, through joint businesses, through contacts in all spheres, etc.
    Now you see results and these results are not bad. My congratulations, your really helped the nation to start on the right way.
    Globalization works.
    I am sure everything should be good for US and Chine as well for other countries including Eastern Europe where I live. No matter who is #1.

    May 20, 2010 at 12:27 pm |
  66. Ben

    You still have look at China as effectively building itself off incredibly cheap labour, this is not sustainable and they know it. Once they reach the same living standard as the western world, what makes you think they will behave any different ? House in the burbs, 3 cars, 2 kids ? They'll be looking to outsource...

    Install a new dictator with progressive economic ideas in Africa, and you can repeat the cookie cutter model. Cheap labour to continue "free trade" for another decade...

    Will the US bow out of global super power status ? Not likely.. At the end of the day, its still all about weapons and energy security (historically food security)

    May 20, 2010 at 12:27 pm |
  67. GDub

    Infrastructure, clean energy, and the economy are important aspects of a superpower nation. So is constitutionalism, the rule of law, and democracy. Who will edge out who? Depends on what you're competing for.

    I must also add, it's a bit misleading of CNN to talk about China's new efficent train systems and then immediately talk about a ride on the Hong Kong subway. Hong Kong's MTR system has been around for a long time. Sure, they've added a dozen stations over the last decade, but the system was there before China took HK. The subway there was built under the British, not the Chinese.

    May 20, 2010 at 12:35 pm |
  68. Thinking stone

    I wonder when people talk about the progress in terms of "freedom" of speech, right to information, No doubt we are in the era where information is "the power". but wait what is it that is banned in China? Accessing scientific journals?, access to information on technology?
    "OR" it is pornography? political propaganda against China?? I wont say that China dont have issues, its indeed a human right violator, BUT I wonder how big is the number of criminals china has hanged when compared to innocent civilians murdered by US army fighting "preempt war" – based on hoax calls like "WMD" – "Islamic fundamentalism".
    Who "invented" these??? Taliban? WMD?

    May 20, 2010 at 12:35 pm |
  69. Andy

    This all coming from a country who had to shoot massive amounts of dust into the air to reduce their smog problem and make the air breathable during the Olympic games. China being a leading country when it comes to economic concerns is a joke. Why do you think every time the EPA outlaws a painting or chemical process, because of the environmental impact, we send it to China?

    May 20, 2010 at 12:36 pm |
  70. Val

    It seems that nowdays, everyone who knows how to type is quick to write America off. This is unlikely to happen anytime soon, at least not in our lifetime.
    I've lived in US and in China for many years and acn attest to the fact while the Chinese progress is quite impressive, the main challenges are still lying ahead. Just to name a few:

    - demographic crisis in the next 20 years caused by rapidly aging population - the consequences of 1 child policy,
    - civil unrest that could be caused by too many factors to count,
    - looming environmental disaster caused by out of control industrial pollution,
    - losing manufacturing edge due to rapidly increasing wages,
    - inevitable health care crisis of unimaginable proportions

    In today's economy, countries that encourage innovation and invest in education are those who will prosper. US is still the home for the best universities and research facilities in the world, more than half of all science papers worldwide are published in US, most discoveries are made here, most innovative companies are also still here.

    The recently popular view that "days of US are numbered" is nothing more than uneducated opinion, a fad. Rome was counted off many times during its existence but it endured for a thousand years. US has been in business for just 200...

    May 20, 2010 at 12:37 pm |
  71. freesoul

    There is no doubt that China's progress is stunning. I'm Korean citizen and have been to China many times. I also convince that China will be one of the biggest economic country in the world. But I don' think what make a country or some community be strong is just money or infrastructure. I think individually the flexibility and the creativity of social culture and system is the most important factor which decide their competitiveness. At least, I believe democracy is still better political system on the matter of creativity, flexibility and freedom if their individual members can decide the right decision. I think China has still some challenges getting over but I hope they could get over and become a good neighbor.

    May 20, 2010 at 12:43 pm |
  72. Arzun

    China is a rich country with poor people and it's been one of the major issue in their country, no matter how much they will make it, they will certainly not achieve the industrial, trade, commercial power like other countries for example United States because of growing population and discrimination in their country. **USA is the first world** it's always predictable that US will always be better with their resources and so on...

    May 20, 2010 at 12:43 pm |
  73. USALover

    It does not matter who comes up tops. Quality of life and family is more important. There is ONLY one world we live in, so lets stop being selfish about it. LOTS of LOVE to Americans and Chinise people.

    May 20, 2010 at 12:54 pm |
  74. yishaG

    I am from China and I think my country, whilst making tremendous progress in infrustructure development as was rightfully noted by lots of people here, has dark stories that only people who were born and raised in China can sense. These can be subtle in a way. For example, the amazing performance of its infrustructure / construction development is caused directly by local governments' GDP desire. Many local governments have just fallen to be slaves of GDP rate. The higher the rate is, the higher position the particular officer-in-charge will be. The crazy house pricing is not crazy at all as it makes perfect sense for government to sell the land to the highest bidder to gain more profit to pull up the GDP. The successful bidder, in order to make money, has to have the selling price even higher. Not much of young couple can really afford the house without some financial help (typically from their parents). Other big and throat-cut problems are, for instance, abnormally huge rich-poor gap, which brings about social instability such as the recent kindergarten killing spree. Much population in this country is still struggling trying to make ends meet. Millions of colleage graduates "lose jobs" the moment they graduate. While I am happy to read so many positive comments here and while these makes me feel proud to be a Chinese for a moment, still, to me, China is glamourous on the outside, and for now only.

    May 20, 2010 at 1:20 pm |
  75. Tony

    I am a Chinese immigrated to USA 15 years ago. I travel between the two countries at least 4 times a year since then. Changes in China is huge. I can easily feel it every time I visit there. To me, it will be very hard for US to compete with China economically and China keep its speed for long time. Reason? Politics. US democracy is good (compare with China) for people who can peacefully live, has always has better opportunities for every individual. that is why I love my new home. However, economic efficiency is the cost and it is a cost that we have to pay. On the contrary, China combines all the benefits of autocracy and capitalism for economic development. No doubt that China is going to win in this battle. The cost: the people suffers, less opportunities, less justice and risk of unstable.

    May 20, 2010 at 3:34 pm |
  76. Smith in Oregon

    Is today's DOW drop of 376 points and 3.60% a market correction or something far worse?

    While that question is entirely going to be answered as the overseas and Shanghai Market opens up later today, it does appear that Wall Street insiders have likely been told that Greece's and Europe's economy problems with the Euro is reaching a flash point. This led to a sudden realization that over 95% of the existing stocks being floated were OVERVALUED and that brought on a very large sell-off.

    Interestingly Germany enacted my recommendations in a surprise move yesterday to ban naked short trading. Short trading is essentially placing a stock bet that item is going to fall or fail. Naked short trading does not require the buyer to pony up the money upfront of the purchase, only when the trade closes at that session or if that trade rises pass that investors risk point.

    More often the naked short trading strategy is entirely accurate and they make money while not being forced to initially have a large amount of money invested in that bet. This strategy wreaked utter havoc with the Russian stock exchange and recently in the demise of Greece's economy where huge investment firms determined that Greece's national debt was greatly over extended and largely bet short on Greece's economic success. Essentially betting that Greece would FAIL.

    Even with the recent transfusion of Billions of Euros by America, Germany and other country's to Greece in a last gasp effort to artificially prop up Greece's economy, it appears the short trading firms have largely eaten up that bubble and are continuing to weaken Greece and the Euro's inherent worth it is attached to.

    With the current mass sell-off for liquidity, many seasoned investors are seeking CASH. The long term projected growth in Europe was previously very small at 1%, and just as likely that is either going to drop to ZERO or a negative growth rate in the long term projected growth!

    Again, if the sell off of the worlds stock markets continue overseas tonight then this downturn is more than a large market correction.

    Investors appear to be very wary of the actual value of the world's currency such as the Euro, the Yen, the Dollar. This explains the large push in the prices of Gold recently and the devaluation of the Euro.

    In essence, the Republican party lawmakers are short trading America. Betting against America's success in a effort to reap a profit from across the board failures. Ironically, more and more American's are realizing that at the worst economic period in recent history here in America, the Obstruction, Legislative blocks and filibusters by the Republican lawmakers are designed to cause America to fail, not succeed and certainly not to prosper.

    May 20, 2010 at 8:55 pm |
  77. Loraine Antrim

    American know-how and ingenuity used to be our brand message. But we have not consistently developed that message lately. That ingenuity and innovation is still part of the American mindset, but it's not uniformly inculcated in our students, the next geneation of leaders and business people.

    China, the new global brand player, has a whole other view of its up-coming generation and its worldwide brand. Will they win out over the U.S.? We still have a chance to keep pace, but it all depends on how we shape oiur next gen of engineers, scientists and business leaders. Loraine Antrim.

    May 20, 2010 at 10:23 pm |
  78. rabauldevil

    "Once China "borrows" pretty much all the wests technology, there won't be any room for them to grow."

    You should remember that China, unlike, Japan was the originator of many technological inventions such as gunpowder, paper, printing, the compass etc. So China has a history of innovation. I don't see why it can't do it again.

    In fact, I would argue that Chinese researchers are right now contributing to modern science and technology contrary to your negative perceptions. I too work with many Mainland Chinese scientist first at a major biotechnology company and now at a very prestigious university in the West Coast (of America).

    I simply don't understand how you can have a bad opinion about them.

    On the whole they are dedicated, hard-working, honest, quick to get things and capable of originality. In fact, a number of them complain that they are the ones who come up with the ideas to (successfully) get grant funding for their principal investigators (bosses) and yet the (usuallly American) PIs tend to take credit for these ideas. This does not sound like the habits of unimaginative, copy-cat drones to me.

    I'll bet that Mainland Chinese will soon start winning Nobel prizes soon. The signs are there. Increasingly, ethnic Chinese scientists are publishing in prestigious journals like Science, Nature, Cell etc. More importanly, those papers are being cited more. They are gaining important faculty positions at universities all over the world. The frequency of ethnic Chinese Nobel prize winners over the last two decades has increased. Chinese students are consistently winning International Math, Chemistry, Physics and Robotics Olympiads.

    It's only a matter of time before all this success affects China's economy. I think it's already there; innovations in technology to preserve the environment is a hot topic now in the Mainland and China is recognized as a world leader in environmental technology. Steven Chu has said as much.

    Maybe you should brush up on or learn Chinese. Then you can really appreciate them. Or you simply are not good enough to work at the really top rank institutions where you can witness most of these Chinese scientists at work.

    May 20, 2010 at 11:30 pm |
  79. Edward Eng

    A better bet for what? Investment into green energy? General investment?

    In terms of competitiveness, America will never relinquish its power. Capitalism and individualism fuel competitiveness. However, if you physically step foot into China today, you'll find that competitiveness is brewing. But it will be a while before the country as a whole shows true competitiveness. There are tons of poor people and the growing middle class are decently concerned about consuming Gucci or LV. Competitiveness to display financial and societal success is much different than competitiveness to build a better planet.

    This article is a bit confusing.

    May 21, 2010 at 2:28 am |
  80. Ying Ying

    There is a lot of discriminatory comments made about China, born either of ignorance or due to brain washing made about China from bias media.
    Objectively China is still lagging behind USA in technology. But that is not to say that they cannot catch up. In the 1960s and 1970s, many people laughed at Japanese copies of cheap cars and cheap electrical items, etc. But after 30 years later nobody is laughing at the Japanese ability to catch up and innovate. Similarly, China too will catch up, just like Japan did. Even today, China is already doing a fair bit of product design and development for American companies. China still lag behind in fundamental research, but I am sure they will catch up eventually.
    China should not be seen as an enemy of the USA. The two countries are increasingly interdependent on each other. As China's wealth grows, their value system will change, and they will behave differently.
    Australia used to be a place to send convicts. But today's wealthy Australia is a place to migrate to. Similarly as China becomes wealthier, you will see migrants from poorer neighbours finding their way into China, probably as illegal immigrant workers.

    May 21, 2010 at 3:30 am |
  81. Varun

    About this US scientific dominance, Please my dear Americans don't forget that there are foreigners (including chineese/Indians) in these prestigious Universities and research institutes mostly because these countries don't have them technical expertise to teach them yet at the american level, but that is not guaranteed forever, is it?
    Its the same as China's political stability, its working now but its not guaranteed to survive.
    Even if China's communists did fall, and since its not going to be divided up into 10 smaller countries because china had be together far and long enough to maintain integrity in a revolution.
    It will still over take other countries. Its the country and its people who are at work, regardless of good govt. or disliked govt.
    Even china accepts its not going to challenge US for another 50 years or so, we here are just forecasting which logically seems the course of natural actions.
    Nothing is guaranteed, but you can't play with your country's future on this basis and expect China is going to fail somewhere down the line and US is currently doing exactly that, not accepting that is ignorance and food for people who love to say "Told you so"

    May 21, 2010 at 2:51 pm |
  82. hhz

    For the past 2500 years, whenever China rose from the ashes of the previous dynasty, it would reach the top. This has happened at least 7 times in history. Today we are witnessing its 8th push to the top and no outside forces could stop it. China will not disintegrate but become a giant that will awe the world. This 21st century will be a century of the Chinese brilliance.

    May 21, 2010 at 3:51 pm |
  83. Andreas Stockholm

    Re: Smith in Oregon

    You write that Germany enacted your recommendation on short trading but then fail to recognize what they in fact did. Let's be clear what the ban is designed to do – namely ban 'naked short trading' on sovereign debt instruments particularly CDS's. A naked short on a CDS is a purely speculative position on a non-regulated and dynamic insurance against default. It is by it's very definition something that does not belong in the global financial system because it serves no other purpose than to cause increased debt insurance premiums and push some distressed entity (i.e. Greece) over the edge. There is a very useful purpose for shortselling in the normal markets for e.g. stocks, futures, commodities etc but wrt something as opaque as the CDS markets of sovereign debt it needs to be regulated so that only those holding the underlying assets can take such positions, in other words 'naked' shorts on CDSs need to be banned and in my opinion will be banned once the CDS market is moved from OTC to a clearing house one.

    May 22, 2010 at 8:44 am |
  84. Snow

    Compare China with Japan? There is no justification to compare these 2 countries:
    1. Has Japan ever led the world in the history? Never.
    2. Has China ever led the world in the history? Yes, for long time, actually China is the only ancient civilization that continues for 5000 years.
    3. How big is Japan? How big is China?
    ... ...

    Think of these questions before you compare these 2 countries.
    There is no chance to Japan to take over US but surely there is for China to do so. It doesn't mean it surely will happen but China has the potential to do so and it depends how China will do in the next following decades, of course also depends how US will perform.

    May 22, 2010 at 10:22 am |
  85. bob schoos

    All that's happening while the Republican obstructionists in the Congress, assisted by the greatest propaganda and vitriolic machine the US has ever known –the FOX channel– continue to argue in favor of old way of doing business, including off shore drilling. For in a few more years, not only American in increasing number will work for Chinese firms within our borders, but they will replace the Arabs and other unfriendly nations when it comes to our energy needs. This time it will be solar panel and other non oil resources. All that while we continue to spend astronomical resources to fight wars against chimera in the Middle East in the name of our fidelity to the state of Israel. When are we going to realize that our are sure becoming not only the Ugly Americans but the Stu[id Americans in the eyes of the world.

    May 23, 2010 at 12:22 pm |
  86. incendie22

    Don't you Yanks have more important things to worry about than China? Like arresting all those Mexicans in Arizona and putting them in concentration camps.

    May 24, 2010 at 8:28 am |
  87. Smith in Oregon

    I find it entirely Ironic that many of America's new and current Weapons Systems entirely depend on rare earth elements to build and maintain them and China has as much as 95% of the worlds Rare Earth elements in China and thru mineral leases signed in Africa.

    It is really sad that America is by far the largest exporter of military weapons around the entire world. Instead of placing all of that technology and research into solving the great problems found in the fields of medicine, environment, energy and agriculture, America spends hundreds of Billions of dollars on building weapons of death. And spreading those weapons all over the world.

    NOW, it seems utterly ironic that CHINA has it in her power to really curtail the flooding of the world with America's weapons and America's defense contractors that are constantly building ever more lethal weapons.

    China has a need for Rare Earth elements for her own people so it is entirely in China's interest to begin severely curtailing all exports of Rare Earth elements to America (wink), and I hope China begins doing that immediately.

    May 25, 2010 at 7:31 am |
  88. Sanjay

    China does not have the problems like America, and has much more room to improve.This room to improve gives it more opportunity to use newer and better technology to make it more modern, Where Chinese are determined to compete with America and better it. Its culture remains more defiant to the American way. It looks down at freedom, but see the states interest first. It is organized with vast human resources. But still it is the communist atheistic culture that is more dangerous. The communist part makes it relatively new country with relatively different values but shares a geographic past with more ancient societies who too were well off and progressive.Perhaps the Chinese should be refereed to as the modern version of Mongols of Ghangesis Khan, like the Communist are a different in ancient culture then the Chinese people as communist have their roots in foreign ideology..

    May 25, 2010 at 11:50 pm |
  89. Stoyan

    I really don,t know who is going to have the upper hand between these two unique nations,but what I do know is this-people work their bottoms out only if they are forced to do so by the circumstances they are living at every stage of their lives not for fun.That is all about -progress.Full stop.

    May 26, 2010 at 10:25 pm |
  90. Daymon Seals

    FREE TRADE....

    You guys...Do you remember GATT , everyone was talking about it and the bill was so long that congress didnt even read it. We passed it. We opened the flood gates for free trade. NAFTA was passed trade for north america...They now say NAFTA was a disaster..why? becasue the jobs went to Mexico becasue the Mexican Peso is worth nothing to the dollar and they get paid in Pesos..So, the Giant sucking sound of jobs left..remember that statement???

    Now companies can take their business elsewhere, or shall I say their jobs elsewhere. We were told goods would be cheaper...NO, they made their money and kept the prices the same with lower costs and their raking it all in...even raising prices. CHINA boomed because they were smart. They took advantage. Kept the currency low, invested in infrastructure and now they can produce everything. We buy from them, they buy our debt becasue WE CANT CONTROL OUR SPENDING. So becasue of our own actions and greed the U.S. quality of life has take a dip. We're giving away our wealth. The quality of life in the U.S. has consistantly gone down since we started free trade and it will continue to go down as we send our jobs overseas.


    we used to produce everything we needed becasue we can. We've stopped and the jobs went..I hope this makes sense.

    Now, Im socialist. Probably surprised many of you. But we need to support ourselves and control our spending...This is what happens when you open the flood gates and let everyone just take advantage. Kepp our wealth and jobs here! Now China supports us and produces everything. Why, we rely on them and they pay our bills..So with that in mind, doesnt it make sense that they are moving ahead?? WAKE UP AMERICA

    May 27, 2010 at 10:07 am |
  91. Lara

    I think that China will surpass the US in years to come as the world's superpower. However, I think the US has a better human rights record and with fewer people, has less poverty. China's population is far too overcrowded. No offense but I find the US quite arrogant – of course people all over the world have things like trains and broadband!

    May 29, 2010 at 9:03 pm |
  92. TONY

    I have 3 nationalities Mexican, American and Chinnesse, Im lived in China for 5 years and now is time for the American People and companies to attack with all our products and services into China.... Now the Chinnesse people love the American Lifestyles, they bought all kinds of originals products, all the products that they saw in the magazine and american movies, is incredible how the American Brands move into China.... We need to launch into China food, sports, american fashion, and CLOREX AND ALL KIND OF CLEANING PRODUCTS.

    May 30, 2010 at 6:04 pm |
  93. Tony

    From rags to riches, it's only natural that China alternative energy
    and infrastructure will surpass USA for the time being. Same can be
    said about a house built 50-25 or even 10 years compare to home built

    The real question, is the family that live within the house "GOVERNMENT"
    relating to moral issues, respect for life, education and health care.

    We'll have to wait, for the moment China has a long way to go. The path
    with be hard and difficult.

    May 31, 2010 at 9:01 am |
  94. Nemo Jones

    Yesterday I was in Beijing for the 10th time. I have watched China change, year by year, for about a dozen years now. Yes, one notices right away that the quality of life there is in some ways much better than in the States. One notices also that the people seem happy, and that there is a vibrant note, a creative note, going through so many things. There is this positive energy. One has to realize how China was humiliated before by the Japanese to know how they are now ready to step up so proudly. They do not need war, it is another illusion one gets fed in America. They are set to win, they know it, and so they are going to work.

    I am an American, and I served a full career in the US military, avidly fighting in Afghanistan. It makes me sad to think about how my country has gone down, but so it is. I have accepted it. While America's back is turned, while war has become a profitable business, while so many innocent people are being killed and jailed, some other countries are living life and making things nice for their people. America became vulgar and violent, and there is no bottom in sight. And the stupidity of the public discourse is disgusting in America. There is a pervasive superficiality which comes across in several ways: materialism, lack of taste in food, lack of compassion for victims of war, simplistic understanding of important global issues, and a telling racism that is behind so much that happens.
    (I am white, I am just telling it how it is. Do you think we could drop missles on someone's house in Belgium and kill all kinds of folks like nothing happened? Don't think so.)

    Bad news travels in packs. And what about the awful food? What about the angry people? And what about the obese? What about the inane sports talk one encounters all the time? In the Army, my conclusion was that the people around me would do anything for money. And angry leaders, that was the norm. The chances that they could do something smart against the Taliban was a big fat zero. What a joke. Unlimited resources, limited wisdom, compassion at zero, General Marshall dead and buried and forgotten. Cowardice.
    Moral and intellectual pygmies looking for a promotion.

    The real question is whether self-government can work. It is not looking good for the US now. And our ramshackle foreign policy was designed by clowns. It is a disgrace.

    I voted for Obama. Oh, naive me. And there is Rahm Immanuel at his right hand, worst of all. There will be no real changes.

    Next I will vote with my feet.

    June 2, 2010 at 2:10 pm |
  95. mihael

    talk about my country, I always remember a word 'this kingdom shall fall, and from the ashes shall arise a new order...' China still need change, a reform...

    June 23, 2010 at 3:28 pm |
  96. Kerala Girls :

    to date, solar panels which generate more than 100Watts are still expensive but hopefully they are getting cheaper each day _

    October 31, 2010 at 2:06 pm |
  97. Fabric Shower Curtain

    i could only wish that solar panels cost only several hundred dollars, i would love to fill my roof with solar panels ;'~

    November 18, 2010 at 2:34 pm |
  98. Kelvin Kindschuh

    Woah! I’m really enjoying the template/theme of this blog.

    November 30, 2013 at 2:34 am |

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