Chinese have no vote, and even no polls,to decide who they prefer as the next president of the United States, but China veteran Tom Doctoroff, author of What Chinese Want: Culture, Communism and the Modern Chinese Consumer, expects a majority will prefer Hillary Clinton over Donald Trump, even though few really like Clinton, he writes in the Huffington Post.
The Chinese are relentless pragmatists. Yes, the Communist Party has made untenable territorial claims in the South China Sea. True, the country’s military build up has been, and will continue to be, aggressive. In China, stability, domestic and international, is sublime. Ascent will not continue without robust international institutions, many of which are anathema to Donald Trump. No matter how successful the central government is in rebalancing the economy toward domestic consumption, exports to Western markets, which have fueled more than 60 percent of economic expansion since 1990, will determine growth rates for decades to come. China grasps the dangers of chaos on an almost primordial level. It has learned from the thirty years of economic and social disaster triggered by post-Liberation isolation that walls, at least outside cyberspace, are counterproductive. In China, there is no desire, even among reactionary military factions, to become divorced from global forces of progress.
Donald Trump represents a threat to the global international order and, hence, a threat to the well-being of Chinese families and their children. Hillary Clinton will not be loved. She’s too emotional inaccessible and tends to hector in a patronizing way proud Chinese find offensive. She also doesn’t the charisma of Obama, a savvy cool cat who conquered the conventional order to actually become the order. (Mold-breaking is tolerated in China but only as a means to an end, a tool of advancement within an omnipresent hierarchy.) And she is a more brazen proponent of American exceptionalism. But she is, above all else, a rationalist and a proponent of the existing international order. In her words, she is “afflicted with a responsibility gene.”
Hillary Clinton is China’s safe, albeit not emotional satisfying, choice. A vote for Hillary Clinton is a vote for stability. And, in the Middle Kingdom, stability is sublime.
Are you looking for more political experts at the China Speakers Bureau? Do check out this list.