Inside the Trilateral Commission: Power elites grapple with China’s rise

Inside the Trilateral Commission: Power elites grapple with China’s rise (original)

Each new candidate for Commission membership is carefully scrutinized before being allowed entry. As a rule, members who take up positions in their national governments — which is uncannily common — give up their Trilateral Commission membership while in public service. Those include U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken, Jake Sullivan, the U.S. national security adviser, Danish Prime Minister Mette Frederiksen and Indian External Affairs Minister Subrahmanyam Jaishankar.

This revolving door between the commission and senior government ranks has always been fodder for conspiracy theorists. Its first director in 1973, Zbigniew Brzezinski, later became U.S. President Jimmy Carter’s national security adviser. The very existence of the commission, meanwhile, seems predicated on the question of whether governing should be left to the people. It is a question the commission itself has tackled head-on since 1975: Is democracy functioning? Or does someone need to guide it?

That year, three scholars — Michel Crozier, Samuel Huntington and Joji Watanuki — wrote a report for The Trilateral Commission titled “The Crisis of Democracy.” In it, Huntington wrote that some of the problems of governance in the U.S. stem from an “excess of democracy.”

Related:

The Crisis of Democracy – Trilateral Commission – 1975

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Colombia’s First Leftist President Charts a New Path on Venezuela + Government of Venezuela and Opposition Resume Mexico Talks

Colombia’s First Leftist President Charts a New Path on Venezuela

While critics derided the meeting as just another propaganda spectacle for Maduro, Petro has sent a signal to opposition parties in Colombia and the international community, particularly the United States, to rethink its approach if they hope to improve relations and achieve a successful political transition in Venezuela.

Related:

The recognition of Juan Guaidó as interim president of Venezuela will end in 2023, according to two sources close to the opposition

Guaidó’s possible change of status occurs just as the opposition coalition establishes the rules to select the unitary candidate who will compete in the next presidential elections in 2024.

So Biden can support a new interim president for Venezuela.

Government of Venezuela and Opposition Resume Mexico Talks: What Is on the Table? (+Alex Saab)

Still skeptical of Gustavo Petro.

China’s Reported Pause Of Russian Oil Imports Ahead Of The West’s Price Cap Is Revealing 🤨

Bloomberg reported on Tuesday that some Chinese buyers have allegedly paused their import of Russian oil ahead of the West’s looming price cap on that resource, which if true would be very revealing in the context of that country exploring the parameters of a New Détente with the US. According to them, those buyers supposedly want to see if they can get better deals from Moscow after the price cap enters into effect, thus signaling opportunistic and not necessarily unfriendly intentions.

China’s Reported Pause Of Russian Oil Imports Ahead Of The West’s Price Cap Is Revealing

Macron rejects ‘confrontation’ as he relaunches Asia strategy

Macron rejects ‘confrontation’ as he relaunches Asia strategy

“We don’t believe in hegemony, we don’t believe in confrontation, we believe in stability,” Macron said.

Macron said a coordinated response was needed to tackle the overlapping crises facing the international community — from climate change to economic turmoil triggered by Russia’s war in Ukraine.

Our Indo-Pacific strategy is how to provide dynamic balance in this environment,” he said.

“How to provide precisely a sort of stability and equilibrium which could not be the hegemony of one of those, could not be the confrontation of the two major powers.”

The Indo-Pacific Strategy doesn’t sound as innocent as Macron makes it out to be:

The new US Indo-Pacific Strategy document released in February has two interesting components, one overt and one covert. The document overtly declares the US is an “Indo-Pacific power.” Covertly, its aim is to “tighten the noose around China.” Arguably, minus the military might, China’s nearly a decade-long “Belt and Road Initiative” cannot be perceived as a grand national strategy aimed at controlling Eurasia or the Asia Pacific or any region for that matter. Yet the BRI is mythologized into such a geostrategic game-changer that it has rattled the US and its allies in the Asia Pacific. The BRI, at best, is nothing more than a mere geopolitical overland and maritime “chessboard” based on trade and investment.

BRI and the ‘Indo-Pacific’ Strategy: Geopolitical vs. Geostrategic

World Energy Outlook 2022 shows the global energy crisis can be a historic turning point towards a cleaner and more secure future

The global energy crisis triggered by Russia’s invasion of Ukraine is causing profound and long-lasting changes that have the potential to hasten the transition to a more sustainable and secure energy system, according to the latest edition of the IEA’s World Energy Outlook.

World Energy Outlook 2022 shows the global energy crisis can be a historic turning point towards a cleaner and more secure future

German lawmaker joins talks with Taiwan’s president, criticises Chancellor Olaf Scholz’s ‘unilateral’ China policy

German lawmaker joins talks with Taiwan’s president, criticises Chancellor Olaf Scholz’s ‘unilateral’ China policy (Yahoo)

“I think we could have avoided this if the chancellor had followed the outline that we laid down together. One year ago, we said that Germany’s China policy must be strongly integrated with the US-China policy,” he added, stressing that the “coalition contract” also supports Taiwan’s democracy against “China’s aggression” and its “meaningful participation in international organisations”.

Over the past two decades, business interests have heavily influenced the country’s China policy. Last year, their combined exports and imports stood at more than US$255 billion, making China Germany’s top trading partner for the sixth straight year.

Germany is dependent on China for solar panels, computer chips, rare earths and other critical minerals. The bilateral trade directly supports more than 1 million German jobs.

Germany’s top 10 listed companies are reliant on China for a significant share of their revenues. According to the Rhodium Group, a New York-based research institute, automakers BMW, Mercedes-Benz and Volkswagen and chemical giant BASF accounted for one-third of all EU investments in China in the past four years.

The Greens are idiots!