‘America First’ Versus ‘America Last’ on China Policy

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Commentary

Many of the Biden administration’s policies are pro-China, whether intentional or not. And policies that weaken the United States benefit the communist regime.

It has been nearly 15 months since Joe Biden took this oath on the Bible: “I do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will faithfully execute the Office of President of the United States, and will to the best of my ability, preserve, protect and defend the Constitution of the United States, so help me God.”

An oath taken in public before God used to be a big deal, but the secularists in America have turned this act into a de facto archaic ceremony without meaning. However, there are Americans who still believe that such oaths imbue the oath taker with a solemn moral responsibility.

In reviewing the results of his various actions taken since his inauguration, Biden could be considered one of those who don’t take their oath seriously.

Is that too harsh a determination? Let us examine the facts.

In analyzing actions taken or not taken since then in the context of the resulting benefits to communist China–which even the Biden administration considers to be the top threat to the United States, per the new National Defense Strategy—the logical conclusion that can be drawn is that Biden has failed to uphold his sworn oath and obligations to the American people.

Worse yet, his actions have undermined U.S. national security vis-à-vis China, as a comparison between many of his policies and those of his predecessor clearly shows.

Energy Security

China’s number one goal is to displace the United States as the world’s only superpower. Thus, the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) views anything that undermines the United States as an enabler to achieving that goal.

The World Bank acknowledges that energy production is at the heart of economic development for all countries. The result is that high energy prices brought about by scarcity are bad for economic growth.

Under former President Donald Trump’s pro-energy policies, the United States became an exporter of oil and gas for the first time in years, with commensurate low gasoline prices at the pump.

Biden’s green policies have led to the exact opposite result. The United States is now a net importer and dependent on potential adversaries such as Russia, Venezuela, and Iran (in the near future) for oil. And then there are the historically high gasoline prices.

U.S. energy insecurity benefits China.

Military Capabilities

Trump made major investments in military capabilities to pace the Chinese, including establishing the U.S. Space Force, modernizing nuclear capabilities, and upgrading cyber defense capabilities.

U.S. President Donald Trump displaus the "Space Policy Directive 4" after signing the directive establish a Space Force
President Donald Trump displays the “Space Policy Directive 4” after signing the directive to establish a Space Force as the sixth branch of the Armed Forces in the Oval Office at the White House in Washington on Feb. 19, 2019. (Jim Young/Reuters)

While a regional war is ongoing in Ukraine, and Chinese hostility is on the rise in East Asia and elsewhere, the Biden administration’s new budget plan calls for a reduction in Navy ships and aircraft, fewer than 1 million Army soldiers for the first time in 20 years, and elevation of “mitigating climate change” as a military priority.

The Chinese regime loves any reduction in U.S. military capabilities and anything that diverts scarce resources away from real combat capabilities.

Military Readiness and Training

Military readiness and training were a priority of the Department of Defense (DOD) under Trump.

One of Biden’s first actions via his new secretary of defense was to initiate a stand-down throughout the U.S. military to address “extremism in the ranks.” This led to the implementation of mandatory critical race theory (CRT) training throughout DOD, thereby diverting scarce training resources and command attention away from the combat-related individual and team training.

CRT programs encourage hostility and distrust—the opposite of unity and cohesion and the mutual trust needed for survival in life-and-death combat situations. CRT engenders poisonous attitudes in what should be “team-oriented environments” when personal trust and reliability must be both implicit and explicit.

As a result of the “woke” pressures on military leaders, military recruiting goals have been increasingly challenging to meet.

CNN reported that “the latest available figures from October and November 2021 show most services did not meet their recruitment goals, apart from the Marine Corps active-duty and reserve components and [as] well as the Air Force active-duty forces.”

This is a disaster in the making when the DOD focus should be on combat effectiveness and military readiness. The CCP is thrilled!

Economic Security

U.S. economic strength was a hallmark during the Trump years, and all demographic groups benefited from Trump’s economic policies that produced sustained economic growth with low taxes, regulations, and inflation.

Before the pandemic hit, unemployment rates for African Americans, Hispanic Americans, Asian Americans, Native Americans, veterans, individuals with disabilities, and those without a high school diploma reached record lows.

The key Trump stimulus passed was $3.2 trillion in historic tax relief and reformation of the tax code. Another major focus was massive deregulation aimed at increasing business productivity, as eight old regulations were eliminated for every new regulation adopted.

The Trump administration focused on fair and reciprocal trade by negotiating historic trade deals to defend American workers, including the U.S.-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA), and imposing tariffs on hundreds of billions worth of Chinese goods to protect American jobs.

The Biden administration’s economic policies are the opposite of Trump’s policies: massive tax and spending increases, an enormous increase in new regulations associated with Green New Deal priorities, ending most Trump-era tariffs, and rejoining the Paris climate accord.

The Biden policies have led to the highest inflation rate in the United States in 40 years, which is destroying the purchasing power of seniors and low-income Americans, and has resulted in major supply chain disruptions in most sectors of the economy. And the resulting stagflation is precisely what the CCP wants to see.

Border Security

Border security is a key component of national security; tight immigration controls promote assimilation and stability over time and minimize the entry of criminals, terrorists, drug-runners (loaded with fentanyl produced in China), and disease-ridden people into the country.

A key focus of the Trump administration was reversing the open border policy of the Obama administration by improving physical border security measures, including the construction of a border wall and the use of surveillance technology to enforce security measures. Deportations of illegal aliens increased, and the flow of illegals into the United States was drastically curtailed during the Trump years.

The Biden policy from day one has been open borders, including the diversion of border wall funding to other uses, the directed nonenforcement of existing U.S. immigration laws, and the recent repeal of Title 42 restrictions (which will lead to an enormous wave of illegal immigrants attempting to cross the southern border).

The strain on U.S. taxpayers and the economy and the spike in drug-related deaths from fentanyl trafficking benefit communist China by further destabilizing the United States.

Epoch Times Photo
Border Patrol agents apprehend illegal immigrants after crossing the Rio Grande from Mexico into the United States, in La Joya, Texas, on Jan. 14, 2022. (Charlotte Cuthbertson/The Epoch Times)

Culture

Former President Ronald Reagan once said that “the best social program is a job.” Jobs are pro-family. And “jobs for as many people who want to work as possible” has been the key policy engine of American culture over the decades.

Trump’s policies delivered jobs in spades, with record-low unemployment rates for minorities and women. The Trump years were all about maximizing personal and economic freedoms, delivering prison reforms (a significant impact on minorities), removing impediments from individuals and businesses, and providing opportunities to all Americans.

On the other hand, Biden’s policies—whether intentionally or not—are undermining the traditional American culture: supporting federal decriminalization of marijuana use, pushing the cultural Marxism of critical race theory (also known as diversity, inclusion, and equity) throughout society, promoting moral relativity before the law (with the Ketanji Brown Jackson nomination being a prime example), criminalizing political dissent (for example, the Jan. 6 protest defendants), and advocating for sex-change-related surgeries for minors.

As if it wasn’t enough for Democrats to work overtime to destroy the nuclear family, the Biden administration’s transgender sex-change surgery push effectively aims to rob children of their innocence. Many of Biden’s domestic policies promote divisiveness and chaos, which only benefit our adversaries, such as the Chinese regime.

Conclusion

Comparing Trump’s (“America First”) and Biden’s (“America Last”) policies relating to communist China is eye-opening and shocking. Biden has reversed almost all of Trump’s “tough-on-China” policies.

Why did Biden do so, since the resultant benefits accrue to the Beijing regime and not to regular Americans, as summarized above?

Much has been reported recently about the Biden family having been corrupted—if not purchased outright—by the Chinese communists (see one example here about Hunter Biden having received $100,000 from the state-controlled Chinese energy company CEFC for “services rendered”). These transactions are confirmed by disclosures and receipts from Hunter Biden’s laptop. Even The New York Times and The Washington Post have now finally acknowledged that the laptop is “real” (and not “Russian disinformation”).

Let us give Joe Biden the benefit of the doubt about being influenced by Chinese-related corruption for the moment. Given the above Trump-Biden policy comparisons, and in the grand scheme of things, has Biden been faithful to his sworn oath? You decide.

Views expressed in this article are the opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of The Epoch Times.

Stu Cvrk

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Stu Cvrk retired as a captain after serving 30 years in the U.S. Navy in a variety of active and reserve capacities, with considerable operational experience in the Middle East and the Western Pacific. Through education and experience as an oceanographer and systems analyst, Cvrk is a graduate of the U.S. Naval Academy, where he received a classical liberal education that serves as the key foundation for his political commentary.



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