IT’S TIME TO CHINA-PROOF
Ah, the good old days! Last year, the economy in America was awesome. Things were going so well, that I flew out there and set up a new company. By the time the holiday season rolled around, I was already growing a modest local business network that was on track to quickly become my future customer base. Me and the wife had a very merry Christmas, and even though we were already back in China – and hearing disturbing news about some weird virus popping up at a Wuhan seafood market – it looked like a great new year was totally set to go off with a bang.
I probably don’t need to tell you what happened next, do I? Of course I don’t. Blowback from the CCP virus seems to be the only thing on the news these days, and although I’m sure everybody’s getting tired of hearing about it, the sad truth is that we’ll probably be talking about this crap for the rest of 2020, and quite possibly even the next few years.
From my vantage point with boots on the ground, China took an extremely hard hit, as the epidemic reached critical mass last month. Even though I currently see more people walking around outside and doing stuff that appears normal again, I’m also not seeing any substantial progress in terms of business activity out here. China’s miraculous middle class has been decimated. There’s a lot of speculation about capital flight risk, as wealthier members of China’s population continue to find ways to get the hell outta Dodge. The number of unemployed and less financially secure young people surreptitiously voicing their concerns on social media doesn’t paint a very rosy picture, either. And now, there’s a second wave of infections rocking the country. China’s economy is definitely in serious trouble.
On top of that, consumers in the west aren’t buying as much stuff from China. Many of them don’t want it, and most of them can’t afford it anyway. Simple math, really. Supply and demand are both at all-time lows. Anybody want to guess what China’s GDP will be at the end of this year? I’ll be surprised if it’s not a negative number, but we’ll never know for sure, because there’s no way the Party would allow that information to be shared.
This is why I’m all about Made in USA, and especially the new revolution in American small business. My confidence in China was already on shaky ground ever since some time around 2013, but now I think it’s simply a matter of time before China will no longer be an option, and only the countries that safeguard themselves from over-dependence will make it to see what happens, instead of wondering what happened.