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Discussion #4 - China & India

It's easy to point the finger at China, & say that they produce the most carbon emissions (which is true). The big rub however, is that per capita their emissions are only approx. one third that of #2 emitter (the U.S.), 7.2 metric tons of CO2 (per person) vs. 17.2 (1.6 for India). One argument is that China's & India's emissions are rising, while America's is falling (& this is true). However, one must keep in mind that wealthier countries have been exporting manufacturing for many years. In fact, with 2.7 billion (of 7.4) living in these two countries alone, & most willing to work for peanuts, virtually all sectors of employment are at risk. Min. wage in China is 80 cents/hr. Min. wage in India is 28 cents/hr. (USD). The wealth in these countries is rising, but so is the polarization of wealth distribution. The extra revenue is mainly going to the rich few, & not the poor masses.

Two more points of interest, are that much of China experienced the worst heat wave in 140 years recently (since they began keeping records). There are many viral videos on the internet of people frying eggs, bacon, shrimp, etc. in pans on the pavement, 45-53 Celsius humidex (July 2013). Also, China is in the process of relocating 250,000 rural farmland dwellers per week to densely populated cities (250,000,000 over the next 12 years). Any guesses as to why?

These record temp's are the result of increasing heat island effect and climate change. Another unfortunate side-effect of these huge mega-cities is of course the unbelievably poor air quality. There are just far too many people being crammed into these cities to have virtually no pollution controls on their mainly coal-fired power plants. (Coal is extremely plentiful and cheap in these areas). Economically it's making their governments, and some wealthy corporations and individuals even richer, but the unfortunate majority are struggling just to breathe the air. There is nothing inherently wrong with certain countries specializing in certain types of industry, but there is if the majority of it's citizens are being completely marginalized in the process.

A big part of why China & India's economies are the fastest growing in the world, is because of the sheer number of global work-hours these two countries possess. Not only do they have almost half the global population, but also the average worker puts in 25-75% more hours per week (or year). In Europe, the average is approx. 1400 work-hours per year (28 hour week). In the US & Canada, it's approx. 1700. In most Eastern Asian countries, the average is approx. 2300. This varies a lot from country to country, and Eastern Europeans work a lot more hours than Western Europeans, but you get the general idea. In the 1950's, Europe's average work-week was actually much higher than America, but has over the years become completely the opposite.

Also interesting, is that globally since the '50's, the average work-week has been shrinking substantially in ALL developed countries. This is mainly due to the transition from single to double income societies, and the increasing use of automation & technology. It's pretty clear to everyone, that even if all of the manufacturing jobs were returned back to their original countries, there would still be far fewer jobs remaining due to the increased usage of robotics & all other forms of tech.
Discussion #4 - China & India

It's easy to point the finger at China, & say that they produce the most carbon emissions (which is true). The big rub however, is that per capita their emissions are only approx. one third that of #2 emitter (the U.S.), 7.2 metric tons of CO2 (per person) vs. 17.2 (1.6 for India). One argument is that China's & India's emissions are rising, while America's is falling (& this is true). However, one must keep in mind that wealthier countries have been exporting manufacturing for many years. In fact, with 2.7 billion (of 7.4) living in these two countries alone, & most willing to work for peanuts, virtually all sectors of employment are at risk. Min. wage in China is 80 cents/hr. Min. wage in India is 28 cents/hr. (USD). The wealth in these countries is rising, but so is the polarization of wealth distribution. The extra revenue is mainly going to the rich few, & not the poor masses.

Two more points of interest, are that much of China experienced the worst heat wave in 140 years recently (since they began keeping records). There are many viral videos on the internet of people frying eggs, bacon, shrimp, etc. in pans on the pavement, 45-53 Celsius humidex (July 2013). Also, China is in the process of relocating 250,000 rural farmland dwellers per week to densely populated cities (250,000,000 over the next 12 years). Any guesses as to why?

These record temp's are the result of increasing heat island effect and climate change. Another unfortunate side-effect of these huge mega-cities is of course the unbelievably poor air quality. There are just far too many people being crammed into these cities to have virtually no pollution controls on their mainly coal-fired power plants. (Coal is extremely plentiful and cheap in these areas). Economically it's making their governments, and some wealthy corporations and individuals even richer, but the unfortunate majority are struggling just to breathe the air. There is nothing inherently wrong with certain countries specializing in certain types of industry, but there is if the majority of it's citizens are being completely marginalized in the process.

A big part of why China & India's economies are the fastest growing in the world, is because of the sheer number of global work-hours these two countries possess. Not only do they have almost half the global population, but also the average worker puts in 25-75% more hours per week (or year). In Europe, the average is approx. 1400 work-hours per year (28 hour week). In the US & Canada, it's approx. 1700. In most Eastern Asian countries, the average is approx. 2300. This varies a lot from country to country, and Eastern Europeans work a lot more hours than Western Europeans, but you get the general idea. In the 1950's, Europe's average work-week was actually much higher than America, but has over the years become completely the opposite.

Also interesting, is that globally since the '50's, the average work-week has been shrinking substantially in ALL developed countries. This is mainly due to the transition from single to double income societies, and the increasing use of automation & technology. It's pretty clear to everyone, that even if all of the manufacturing jobs were returned back to their original countries, there would still be far fewer jobs remaining due to the increased usage of robotics & all other forms of tech.