Commentary: If Biden Wins, China Wins—and America Loses

The New York Times on Monday published a 3,100-word story headlined “Joe Biden’s China Journey.” The three reporters whose bylines appear on the article engage in a painfully obvious effort to explain away the former vice president’s long and cozy relationship with communist China. Now, at long last, they suggest, Biden is ready to get really tough on China. Tougher even than Trump.

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Commentary: Only Muscular Civic Nationalism Can Save America

America today faces challenges that cannot be overcome without national unity. Desperate economic hardship and existential international threats are beyond the living memory of most Americans, but they could be coming back. The Pax Americana, in effect since 1945, may be coming to an end. Since the end of the Cold War in 1991 America has been a hyperpower, dominating the world economically and militarily. All of that is now in question.

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Analysis: Rhetoric About a New Civil War Is on the Rise

In June, we counted 23 articles written about the prospect of a new or cold civil war in the United States. In July, that number doubled to 46. That’s no mere “uptick.”

Right or wrong, these prognostications from both Left and Right are significant for what they reveal about the nature of the political division in the United States. Interest in this topic will only increase as we approach the election in November and whatever lies beyond it.

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China Tells US to Close Chengdu Consulate in Growing Spat

China ordered the United States on Friday to close its consulate in the western city of Chengdu, ratcheting up a diplomatic conflict at a time when relations have sunk to their lowest level in decades.

The move was a response to the Trump administration’s order this week for Beijing to close its consulate in Houston after Washington accused Chinese agents of trying to steal medical and other research in Texas.

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US Ratchets up China Tensions, Closing Houston Consulate

The United States ordered China to close its consulate in Houston, escalating tensions between the world’s largest economies as President Donald Trump ramps up pressure against China ahead of the November election. Beijing denounced the order Wednesday as “outrageous” and said it would draw a firm response if not reversed.

The physical closure of the consulate, one of six in the United States along with China’s mission to the United Nations, marked a dramatic step in increasingly contentious relations that have been strained not only by the coronavirus pandemic but by disputes over trade, human rights, Hong Kong and Chinese assertiveness in the South China Sea.

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Commentary: Why Sweden Succeeded in ‘Flattening the Curve’ and New York Failed

Coronavirus deaths have slowed to a crawl in Sweden. With the exception of a single death on July 13, no deaths in this nation of 10 million have been reported since July 10.

But the debate over Sweden’s approach to the COVID-19 pandemic, which relied on individual responsibility instead of government coercion to maintain social distancing, is far from over.

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Commentary: A Reign of Error

At the end of The Unheavenly City: The Nature and the Future of Our Urban Crisis (1968), Edward Banfield presents a prospect regarding race relations that seems to have been fulfilled since his tumultuous years and ours: a reign of error.

Let me set the stage. America had become the wealthiest nation in the history of the world, and the wealth was making its way to the lower classes also. Thus the main “accidental factor” that had locked Americans in a vicious cycle of white discrimination and prejudice on one side and low standards and attainments for blacks on the other would be largely alleviated. Such prejudice, said Banfield, writing during the years of urban riots, was already in decline.

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Commentary: Dismantling America Without a Replacement

Calls to dismantle this group or that institution have become the topic du jour in American politics. It started with police departments and the criminal justice system, then it spread to museums, and now one Democratic congresswoman is raising the bar on a logarithmic scale.

In a Tuesday press conference devoted to discussing America’s alleged systemic racism, Congresswoman Ilhan Omar, D-MN, called for dismantling “the whole system of oppression wherever we find it.”

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Commentary: Playing the Russia Card

America was at a historic crossroads in 1971. The war in Vietnam increasingly was seen as unwinnable, while triggering ongoing unrest in cities and college campuses across the nation. The economy was challenged with rising inflation and rising trade deficits. In August 1971, the British ambassador turned up at the Treasury Department to request that $3 billion be converted into gold. That same week, President Nixon ordered a freeze on all prices and wages in the United States.

In the Communist world, America’s problems were trumpeted as the inevitable collapse of capitalist imperialism. Russia and China stood triumphant over a declining West. And what did Nixon do? He stunned the world by traveling to China. His goal: To drive a wedge between the two Communist superpowers.

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Trump Says US to Designate Antifa a Terrorist Organization

President Donald Trump announced that the United States will designate Antifa a domestic terrorist organization.

“The United States of America will be designating Antifa as a Terrorist Organization,” the president wrote on Twitter Sunday morning, acting on an idea long called for by conservative lawmakers. The president said in 2019 that he was considering labeling Antifa a terrorist organization, but didn’t take any further action.

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Commentary: China Should Not Provoke the United States

In the immense and multifaceted controversy over the coronavirus pandemic, and in the midst of tumultuous pre-electoral events in the United States, the role of the Chinese government in inflicting this economic and public health disaster on the world has been the subject of comparative restraint.

Were it not for these other preoccupations in this American election year, and expert research confirmed official Chinese complicity, by negligence or malice, in the generation of the pandemic, with the complicity of the World Health Organization, there would be some danger of an intemperate response.

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Commentary: The Indispensable American Family

In August 1884, Washington Gladden, possibly the most famous Christian preacher in the America of his day, wrote an article in The Century Magazine on “Three Dangers” besetting the welfare of the nation he loved. Of the first and third dangers he named, intemperance and gambling, I have little to say here. I will note that Dr. Gladden concedes that alcohol may be used well, even for conviviality, though he himself did not drink.

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Commentary: China’s Electrifying Rags-to-Riches Ascent – at America’s Expense

A friend of mine who traveled China from the 1970s until recently described what the country was like 30 years ago:

Its cities were sprawling, impoverished places with dirt roads and low-rise structures. With few automobiles in the country back then, the Chinese people got around mostly by rickshaws and bicycles. The country had only a few tall buildings and just two sizable airports, in Beijing, its capital, and Shanghai, its financial center. China had no modern highways, bridges or high-speed rails, and the only trains that traversed the country were pulled by antiquated steam engines.

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Commentary: Communism Survivor Warns What Will Happen If Americans Take Freedom for Granted

Too few have learned about the horrors of communism. Fewer still have escaped it and lived to tell the tale.

Amy Phan West is one such survivor. In 1984, Phan escaped Vietnam’s communist dictatorship by concealing herself in the bottom of one of her father’s fishing vessels before it set out to sea.

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Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez Said America Is a ‘Brutal, Barbarian Society’

According to democratic socialist Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, the Covid-19 pandemic is proving that the United States “is a brutal, barbarian society for the vast majority of working-class Americans.” As evidence of this, she claims that “40% of us couldn’t even afford a $400 emergency” before this crisis, and Covid-19 “is more than a $400 emergency.”

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Russia Wages an Oil War Against Saudi Arabia and US Amid Coronavirus Concerns

Oil prices dropped Monday as Saudi Arabia and Russia haggle over whether to reduce crude production amid fears that coronavirus will hamper air travel and potentially wreck the global economy.

Prices fell into the $30s as the Saudis push for a cut in output to prop up prices, while Russia went the other way, and decided to infuse the market with hundreds of thousands of barrels of oil, according to The Washington Post. Moscow is worried that the U.S. will use shale oil to take advantage if Saudi Arabia ease off production.

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U.S. Officials Battle Coronavirus on Multiple Health Care, Economic Fronts Even as Death Toll Reaches 9

The coronavirus death toll in the United States hit nine on Tuesday, even as more areas around the world report infections.

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The Minnesota Sun Adds New Daily Feature: Coronavirus Updates

Even as the coronavirus has claimed its first fatality in the U.S., The Minnesota Sun is adding a new reference feature to help you keep track of the virus’s spread in the country and around the world.

We are providing a badge using data from Worldometer near the top of the page. The Worldometer badge will always appear near the top of our homepage, just underneath the Top Story link.

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Commentary: Americans Will Rally Around Trump on Iran

The Democrats have stumbled into yet another beartrap in their unanimous objection to President Trump’s order to kill the world’s leading terrorist, Iranian general Qassem Soleimani. The same misdirected solicitude that caused the Washington Post to describe ISIS leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, after he was driven to suicide by U.S. special operators, as an “austere cleric” has elevated Soleimani to the status of an Iranian General MacArthur.

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Commentary: Demographics and the American Prospect

In the summer of 2018, journalist Vivian Yee amused herself with the thought that Orange Country, California, was once an agricultural, “conservative (think Richard Nixon and the John Birch Society) and white (very, very white),” slice of America. But “Chinese and Korean immigrants, and Asian-Americans from other states,” she wrote on the eve of the midterm election, “have made Irvine nearly half Asian.”

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Commentary: Imagining Chelsea Clinton’s America

It’s nice to know we have Chelsea Clinton to advise us on the state of America today. And since Chelsea Clinton reliably channels the conventional wisdom of the establishment Left in America, it is useful to wonder what sort of country her children would grow up in, if she could wave a wand and let the Left win every battle for the next 20 years.

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Commentary: With a Japan Trade Deal and a Strong U.S. Economy, Where Is the Trade Depression People Predicted?

Readers will recall that in the 2016 election and since then financial and political analysts were tripping over themselves to predict that if President Donald Trump won and implemented his planned trade agenda, which included tariffs, why, we’d have a global recession perhaps even as bad as the Great Depression.

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Commentary: Delaying Tariffs Is Not the Answer to China’s Trade Practices

For the past two years, President Donald Trump has argued that China was paying the cost of the trade war. Following a delay in some of the tariffs from the latest round in the dispute with China, however, the president has acknowledged for the first time that tariffs have an impact on American families.

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Commentary: Reasons Why America Should Question Its Trade Relationship with China

China is alleged to harvest the organs of thousands of political dissidents it keeps in concentration camps, it threatens Hong Kong and Taiwan daily, it appears to be funding and assisting the North Korean nuclear missile program and is using the hundreds of billions of dollars of trade deficits to build a first-rate navy to defeat the U.S. as every year’s trade deficit pays for more than two years of China’s military spending.

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