But China is not a $10 trillion growth miracle with transition challenges; it is a quasi-totalitarian nation gone mad digging, building, borrowing, spending and speculating in a magnitude that has no historical parallel.
So doing, It has fashioned itself into an incendiary volcano of unpayable debt and wasteful, crazy-ass overinvestment in everything. It cannot be slowed, stabilized or transitioned by edicts and new plans from the comrades in Beijing. It is the greatest economic trainwreck in human history barreling toward a bridgeless chasm.
Ever since the aging oligarch(s) who run China were delivered from Mao’s hideous dystopia by Mr. Deng’s chance discovery of printing press prosperity, they have lived in an ever expanding bubble that is so economically unreal that it would make the Truman Show envious. Any rulers with even a modicum of economic literacy would have recognized long ago that the Chinese economy is booby-trapped everywhere with waste, excess and unsustainability.
Here is but one example. Somewhere near Shanghai some credit-crazed developers built a replica of the Pentagon on 100 acres of land. This was not intended as a build-to-lease deal with the PLA (People’s Liberation Army); its a shopping mall that apparently has no tenants and no customers!