Something I’ve always suspected is confirmed in Britain’s The Daily Mail: that the Age of the White Man is over. This is something I’ve both feared and hoped for since a boy. Even in my public school-victim ignorance, I have felt since I was 10 years old, that the White Man has built his own coffin. Ye Shall reap what you sow.
The truth is that we are masters of the world no more.
The global power shift from the West to the East is no longer just a matter of debate confined to learned journals and newspaper columns - it is a reality that is beginning to have a huge impact on our daily lives.
What would those Victorian masters of old have made of the fact that Chinese security men were on the streets of London this week, ordering our own police about and fighting running battles with British protesters while bewildered athletes carried the Olympic torch on its relay through the capital?
It was a brazen display of how confident China has become of its new place in the world, just as the British Government’s failure to take a firm stand on Chinese abuses of human rights shows how craven we have become.
Just as the 19th century was the British century, and the 20th century was the American century, the 21st century is the Asian century.
But the handover of global power from the UK to the U.S. was trivial compared to what is happening now.
The U.S. was Britain’s offspring, based on the same values and the same language.
It, too, was an Anglo-Saxon country, and passing the baton across the Atlantic ensured the continuation of the Anglo-Saxon world order, based on democracy, free trade and a belief in human rights, upheld through international institutions that both powers supported.
But the world order we have grown used to - and comfortable with - over the last century is coming to an end.
Napoleon III compared China to a sleeping giant and warned: “When China awakes, she will shake the world.”
After a long hibernation, China, and her 1.3 billion people - twice the population of the U.S. and EU combined - is awaking almost overnight.
China is spending 35 times as much on crude oil as it did eight years ago, and 23 times as much on copper.
As it builds gleaming skyscrapers on its fields, China alone consumes half the world’s cement and a third of its steel.
What is happening is so extraordinary that economists have had to invent a new word for it - this is not an economic cycle, but a supercycle, a shift in the world economy of historic proportions.
To my untrained eye, this explains much about America’s blatant oil grab in Iraq/Iran. (Have no fear, we’ll be in Iran if McCain wins.) Throughout history, wars have been about resources. Today the resource of interest is Oil. That won’t last, soon we’ll have wars over food, over fresh water. All within the ascending century.
And we may have already lost those future conflicts.
Europeans have, for half a millennium, been unchallenged as the global colonisers, but last month the respected Economist magazine dubbed the Chinese “The New Colonists”.
While the Congo in central Africa was once over-run by Belgians, it is now the Chinese that can be found wondering around its mining belts.
In Lubumbashi, the capital of the Congo’s copper-rich region Katanga, the Economist reported “a sudden Chinese invasion”.
Troubled Angola recently shunned Western financial aid because of the amount of Chinese money pouring into it, in return for commodities.
From Kazakhstan to Indonesia to Latin America, Chinese firms are gobbling up oil, gas, coal and metals.
We, as a Caucasian, patriarchal society, have reached our pinnacle and moved beyond to decline. Any attempts to deny this is fantasy. Not only is America in descendancy, so too is Western Culture, as the Daily Mail clearly sums up:
The U.S. company Orient Express complained when Tata tried to buy it, that any association with the Indian company would damage the Orient Express’s premium brand.
Responding, R K Krishna Kumar, a senior Tata executive, thundered that “Indian companies … will take their rightful place in the international arena.
“Enterprises and individuals must recognise and adapt to these fundamental economic changes. We believe that those with a fossilised frame of mind risk being marginalised.”
In a world in which we are no longer masters, it is a warning that we ignore at our peril.
The Wise give into the inevitable. Fools fight it.