There was a very important foreign policy win for the United States as Fox Business host Trish Regan debated Chinese state television host Liu Xin. It was likely missed by most Americans who are familiar with our own media stars, but most in China are not. Now, they got a feel for American media by watching the debate and likely came away with many questions.
Aren’t Americans supposed to be unhinged bullies who want to dominate China? That’s the narrative that has been laid forth by Chinese media, including the report that initiated this debate when Liu went after Regan specifically.
Regan and Liu debated semantics with neither leaving any room for substantial wrongdoing by their respective governments during the current trade war. But the way Regan held her composure and treated Liu with respect is a stark contrast to the way she and the rest of American media has been portrayed in China.
One poignant point came near the end of the debate when Regan asked about China’s status as the 2nd largest economy in the world despite all the international assistance they receive as an “emerging” economy. Liu acknowledged the contradiction and said there were “light talks” being held in Beijing to reconcile it.
But the real talking point from the debate came at the end when Regan asked about China’s version of socialism. It’s a “state capitalism,” as she characterized it, meaning the socialist nation relied on capitalistic principles to maintain their brand of communism. This point was meant for the American audience as a stab against the Democrats’ push for socialistic policies. She hinted without directly saying that the way China’s economy works now is essentially what the Democrats want for America’s economy. The point may have been missed overseas but should have been a clear message to Americans.
This debate may not have had the fireworks that some expected, and that’s a good thing. As China’s people get to see American media in action for the first time, it was important for Regan to break the false narratives. She did that exceptionally.
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