In a Wall Street Journal op-ed, Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney writes that "the character of the Chinese government--one that marries aspects of the free market with suppression of freedom--shouldn't become the norm."
Should the 21st century be an American century? To answer, it is only necessary to contemplate the alternatives.
One much bruited these days is that of a Chinese century. With China's billion-plus population, its 10% annual average growth rates, and its burgeoning military power, a China that comes to dominate Asia and much of the globe is increasingly becoming thinkable. The character of the Chinese government--one that marries aspects of the free market with suppression of political and personal freedom--would become a widespread and disquieting norm.
But the dawn of a Chinese century--and the end of an American one--is not inevitable. America possesses inherent strengths that grant us a competitive advantage over China and the rest of the world. We must, however, restore those strengths.