From American Hegemony to Pax Sinica

The following is a review of Eclipse: Living in the Shadow of China’s Economic Dominance, by Arvind Subramanian.

Arvind Subramanian begins this compelling book with a provocative scene. It is February 2021. The newly elected U.S. president, accompanied at Chinese insistence by U.S. Congressional leaders, make a humiliating pilgrimage to the International Monetary Fund to secure a $3 trillion bailout. China, the world’s largest economy, dictates the terms. Among them is a naval pullback from the Pacific.

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Can Hong Kong Teach London and New York About Financial Regulation?

The following is a review of Reluctant Regulators: How the West Created and China Survived the Global Financial Crisis, by Leo F. Goodstadt.

As the world struggles to recover from the wreckage of the 2008 financial meltdown the appetite for regulatory reform is waning. Leo Goodstadt (顧汝德) is determined to see that the importance of sound financial regulation is learned.

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From Red to Black: Can China Turn Green?

The following is a review of When a Billion Chinese Jump: How China Will Save Mankind – Or Destroy It, by Johnathan Watts.

Jonathan Watts (華衷) is a self-confessed worrier. When he was a child there was a popular urban myth in the West that if China’s one billion people all jumped at exactly the same time, it would “shake the earth off its axis and destroy us all.” For some time, the young Watts’ bedtime prayers ended by asking God to “help all the poor and hungry people, and please make sure everyone in China doesn’t jump at the same time.”

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The First Tea Party: Free Trade & Free Men

The following is a review of So Great a Proffit: How the East Indies Trade Transformed Anglo-American Capitalism, by James R. Fichter.

This is a book about the original Tea Party — and so much more. It is a story of early free traders’ battles against English monopoly on the way to American independence. It is a tale of the development of America’s merchant class and the fortunes that were built on the Asia trade. And it is a saga of British trade politics on the cusp of reform.

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Asia No Innocent Victim

The following is a review of From Asian to Global Financial Crisis: An Asian Regulator’s View of Unfettered Finance in the 1990s and 2000s, by Andrew Sheng

This book is wide in its ambitions and troubling in its conclusions. With the global financial system at a once-in-a-generation inflection point, Andrew Sheng (沈聯濤), one of Asia’s most experienced and international financial regulators has drawn lessons from the 1997-98 Asian financial crisis.

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