-- Behind Washington's defamation of China as an "economic bully" is the U.S. politicians' attempt to scapegoat China for U.S. economic woes, and their long-time habit of seeking confrontation to serve selfish goals.
--In recent years, America has proven itself a skillful "economic bully" with various means, including sanctions, investment restrictions and tarrifs.
--In a changing world where cooperation and solidarity are in dire need, Washington's actions will only cripple its own credibility and impede global economic recovery.
BEIJING, Oct. 22 (Xinhua) -- Two U.S. lawmakers have recently introduced a bill to establish an interagency task force to counter the so-called "growing economic coercion" of China, hyping up Washington's anti-China cliche in the economic sector and attempting to make an issue out of China.
However in reality, it is the United States that has long been abusing its dominant position in the world economy to practice trade protectionism and economic unilateralism for its own sake. That has not only incurred losses for all nations concerned, but also hampered international cooperation and the struggling global recovery amid COVID-19.
As the world has witnessed, the U.S. obsession with safeguarding its "position of strength" covers almost every realm, in particular trade and economy, and that happens in its interactions not just with China.
Behind Washington's defamation of China as an "economic bully" is the U.S. politicians' attempt to scapegoat China for U.S. economic woes, and their long-time habit of seeking confrontation to serve selfish goals.
Photo taken on Sept. 3, 2021 shows the White House in Washington, D.C., the United States. (Xinhua/Liu Jie)
DOMESTIC DISCONTENT OVER ECONOMY
Experts believe that the U.S. economy is now deeply mired in long-festering problems, which have been aggravated by the rampant spread of the coronavirus and its variants.
Currently, the already piling-up U.S. debt burden, massive spending plans and ineffective recovery strategies are sparking severe concerns regarding the sustainability of the country's economy amid a new surge of COVID-19 infections.
Photo taken on May 6, 2020 shows a temporarily closed pizza restaurant in Washington, D.C., the United States. (Xinhua/Liu Jie)
The White House's plan to leave in place the Section 301 tariffs imposed by the former Trump administration has also triggered discontent and opposition among U.S. trade groups representing importers, which have long urged Washington to abolish such practices.
U.S. President Joe Biden's trade strategy toward China "will further inflict unnecessary damage to the American economy and retail supply chains. Because these tariffs touch products in nearly every sector of the U.S. economy, they also ultimately force consumers to pay higher prices," said the U.S. National Retail Federation in a recent statement.
"At a time when industry is struggling with an unprecedented supply chain crisis due to our crumbling infrastructure, economic fallout from a damaging pandemic, and unprecedented freight costs, it is distressing that the administration has chosen to continue to subject U.S. companies to these damaging taxes," said Steve Lamar, president of the American Apparel and Footwear Association.
Pedestrians walk past a store for lease in New York, the United States, Sept. 4, 2020. (Xinhua/Wang Ying)
For the second straight month, more than half of Americans think the U.S. economy is in bad shape, according to a poll released by CBS News website last week.
The poll, co-conducted by CBS News from Oct. 6 to 8 by interviewing 2,054 U.S. adults, found that only 37 percent of Americans rate the economy as very or fairly good, the lowest percentage since March.
CBS News also pointed out that most Americans are not convinced that the Biden administration's domestic agenda would improve the economy, as only about a third of the surveyed Americans think the Build Back Better plan would help them directly or help the economy overall.
Economists also expect the rampant spread of the highly contagious Delta variant of COVID-19 would slow U.S. economic growth this year to 5.6 percent, according to a survey last month by the Washington-based National Association of Business Economists.
Multiple studies suggest American businesses and families have borne the brunt of the elevated tariffs imposed in the U.S.-initiated trade war against China, said Moody's Investors Service in a report in May.
The rating agency said that U.S. importers have absorbed more than 90 percent of additional costs resulting from higher U.S. tariff on Chinese goods.
A report by the Brookings Institution also revealed that economic analyses show the average American household has paid somewhere from several hundred to a thousand dollars or more per year, thanks to higher consumer prices attributable to tariffs.
In recent years, America has proven itself a skillful "economic bully" with various means, including sanctions, investment restrictions and tarrifs, which have antagonized allies and stirred up tensions and disruptions in global trade and supply chains.
Besides China, the United States has dragged an array of its partners into trade disputes and technological suppression through a series of coercive tactics.
Photo taken on Sept. 30, 2021 shows the U.S. Capitol building in Washington, D.C., the United States. (Xinhua/Liu Jie)
"Just as the United States has not been above browbeating its partners, so too has the U.S. often changed its 'friends' for the sake of larger interests," said a recent article by U.S. news portal Politico.
Former European Council President Donald Tusk has once gone "full zen in his angry description of Trump's effect on Europe," said The Washington Post.
"Looking at the latest decisions of Donald Trump, someone could even think: With friends like that, who needs enemies?" Tusk told reporters back in 2018. "But, frankly speaking, Europe should be grateful to President Trump. Because, thanks to him, we got rid of all the illusions. He has made us realize that if you need a helping hand, you will find one at the end of your arm."
Though the United States has always claimed Europe as a natural partner, resetting their alliance is believed to be rockier than expected, with trade frictions unresolved and trust unrestored across the Atlantic.
Last week, French Finance Minister Bruno Le Maire urged Washington to "get rid of these areas of tension between the United States and Europe as quickly as possible."
A poll of 11,000 respondents across nine European countries, released by the European Council on Foreign Relations in late June in 2020, found there was an increasingly negative perception of the United States amid the coronavirus outbreak.
Observers worldwide have seen that the Biden administration has not ended the unilateralism and protectionism of the Trump era, and has even escalated it in some areas, abusing politics to further distort economics and advanced technology.
The U.S. commitment to its allies sounds eloquently assertive, but it is as fragile as soap bubbles when the truth has been brought to light. After the exposure of U.S. eavesdropping on European leaders, France and Germany deplored the alleged spying as "unacceptable," and demanded "full clarity" from the U.S. side.
In his new book "The Chip Trap," Marc Lassus, key founder of French smart card producer Gemplus, has chosen to speak out and reveal how the U.S. security services persecuted him and seized control of his tech firm.
The book, which came after "The American Trap: My Battle to Expose America's Secret Economic War against the Rest of the World" written by Frederic Pierucci, a former senior manager for French energy and transport conglomerate Alstom, serves as yet another testimony to America's dark history of handicapping the tech companies of other countries by hook or by crook to realize ill-gotten selfish gains.
"It is time to speak out the truth," Lassus said after experiencing countless repressions and threats from the United States. "We must make European countries aware that the United States are not real friends, sometimes even enemies."
From Europe to Southeast Asia, regional leaders have explicitly ruled out being involved in U.S.-China competition, particularly Washington's blame-China game.
In a changing world where cooperation and solidarity are in dire need, Washington's actions will only cripple its own credibility and impede global economic recovery.
(Gao Pan, Xiong Maoling in Washington, Chen Shaohua in Beijing also contributed to the story.) (Video editors: Hong Liang, Cao Ying, Mu Xuyao)■