what high-tech enterprises china does have are dependent on inputs from the first world, which china would not be able to replace if they were cut off. so china would not be able to hurt the us more than the us can hurt china in an escalated trade war. the trade war is a struggle to reconfigure the relationship between china and the us, but it does not signify a rupture in that relationship. china is still a third-world nation from which imperialism extracts value
this article argues that china's rapid industrial growth has been restricted to low-tech, labor-intensive, non-monopoly, low-profit production, while high-tech, capital-intensive, monopoly, high-profit production has remained strictly in the hands of the first world. thus despite all the hype china is still nowhere near "catching up" to the first world, much less surpassing it
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