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3:53AM

China in Africa Means Frontier Integration

hu_africa.png

Last week in Cape Town, South Africa, I was a keynote speaker at the massive Mining Indaba conference, the premier annual gathering of global extractive companies involved in Africa's dominant economic sector. And the difference between the many military and aid conferences I've attended on Africa and this international commodities convention in Africa was telling. If you think most Americans now obsess over a "rising" China, you should know that we take a backseat to the Africans on this score. But whereas we often see China's rise as a potential threat, Africans see it as an opportunity, and China's "positive resource alliance" -- as another speaker put it -- is the primary reason why.

Continue reading this week's New Rules column at WPR.

Reader Comments (3)

You've honed this message to such a fine point that it rivals the Gettysburg address for power and efficiency. This iteration is suitable for framing.
February 8, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterTEJ
I heartily agree with TEJ. This is TPMB in his domain/dominion and at the top of his game.

Tom addresses/places the notion of a zero-sum game in historical perspective:

“But this is hardly a zero-sum game. What Europe once successfully did to North America in the 19th century and the U.S. repeated in East Asia in the second half of the 20th century, China -- along with India and other Asian economies -- is now doing to Africa: slotting first its resources and ultimately its labor into the lower rungs of global production chains, as the rapidly aging Chinese are forced to move up that ladder as quickly as possible. Again, consistent with the historic norm, the last one integrated has become globalization's newest replicator.”

My comment on zero-sum games:

There are a lot of people that do see the peoples of the world engaged in a zero-sum game. We that follow TPMB see that all kinds of rule sets, connectivity, exchanges, flows, and substitutions effectively work to form an organic globalization that is able to distribute attention care motive and function in order to fuel life and action so that all can contribute survive and thrive. In doing this we are in effect making use of all available fluidities in accommodation at various times (for various durations) to elements which we actually do have in a zero-sum game relation. It may be over-used but the comparison to the human organism works very well. We do not think of (and we are not conscious of) the parts/functions of the healthy human body as being in a zero-sum game.
February 8, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterGilbert Garza
From Tom’s WPR ariticle:

“But this is hardly a zero-sum game. What Europe once successfully did to North America in the 19th century and the U.S. repeated in East Asia in the second half of the 20th century, China -- along with India and other Asian economies -- is now doing to Africa: slotting first its resources and ultimately its labor into the lower rungs of global production chains, as the rapidly aging Chinese are forced to move up that ladder as quickly as possible. Again, consistent with the historic norm, the last one integrated has become globalization's newest replicator.”

I submitted a comment previously on the reference to zero-sum game thinking that I knew something about it and should expand a little on TPMB’s reference to it in relation to how the world works according to TPMB. Later I decided to do Wikipedia and Google which led me to Robert Wright which I searched on TPMB’s web site where I found in several postings that TPMB met, shared ideas with Wright, and incorporated some of these ideas in BFA. I have heard Wright’s TED presentation and I have ordered Wright’s Non-Zero book. I will not be too surprised or disappointed if my previous comment is not selected for inclusion. (Live and learn.)
February 8, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterGilbert Garza

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