Citizen Trump / Citizen Xi

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Every morning, we run the Narrative Machine on the past 24 hours worth of financial media to find the most on-narrative (i.e. interconnected and central) stories in financial media. It’s not a list of best articles or articles we think are most interesting … often far from it.

But for whatever reason these are articles that are representative of some sort of chord that has been struck in Narrative-world.


China drops heavy hint it is about to pull the trigger on its most powerful weapon in the trade war [Business Insider]

The US heavily relies on China for rare-earth materials, which are 17 elements widely used in products like batteries, smartphones, electric cars, and fighter jets.

Beijing appears ready to weaponize those exports in its trade war with Washington.

China’s top economic planning commission and state media suggested this week that the country might restrict rare-earth exports to the US.

Restricting Chinese rare earths to the US could cripple the American tech, defense, and manufacturing industries.

Emphasis mine.

I put out another Zeitgeist piece on this same topic earlier today.

How will you know that the US-China trade narrative is shifting towards a protracted game of Chicken?

When the narrative becomes dominated by national security language and clusters.

This isn’t a US thing. This isn’t a China thing. This isn’t a Trump thing. This isn’t a Xi thing.

This is a social animal thing.

Before they undertake a risky action like engaging in conflict with another powerful nation … whether it’s a hot conflict or a cold conflict … ALL governments in ALL of history make an effort to prepare public opinion for that conflict through WORDS of patriotism and self-defense.

The words are not lies. The words are not wrong. The conflict may be just.

But you are being played nonetheless.


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Brad Dunkley
1 year ago

Not sure what Ben’s trying to say here. War is coming and this is the pretext to galvanize public support?

Nicholas Allen
1 year ago
Reply to  Brad Dunkley

He’s saying that national security language is a tell for a special subset of fiat news that is used to drum up support for an expected long, protracted grind.

The Daily Zeitgeist

The Zeitgeist – May 7, 2021

By Ben Hunt | May 7, 2021 | 8 Comments

Our weekly digest on what we’re working on …

Including this article from the WSJ: Millions Are Unemployed. Why Can’t Companies Find Workers?

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Not this time.

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