Op-Ed: Conservatives Must Not Let Coronavirus Crisis Go to Waste


Rahm Emanuel, the former Chicago mayor and chief of staff for President Barack Obama, once infamously said: “You never want a serious crisis to go to waste. And what I mean by that is an opportunity to do things that you think you could not do before.”

While Emanuel has been pilloried for that quote by conservatives and understandably so, his candid comment offered a glimpse behind the curtain into how realpolitik is played. His words are now more prescient than ever before in the age of the coronavirus pandemic, which could extend for months, and has shocked the consciousness of the American public.

The coronavirus is arguably one of the longest sustained crises in American history, it is certainly the biggest crisis since at least the 9/11 attacks and the fallout means a political opportunity for those cunning enough to seize it.

This disaster will change the United States forever, and conservatives will either control that inevitable change or get routed by the left, who are already exploiting the hysteria for their devious ends.

A fortuitous consequence of the entire mess, which the mainstream media is desperate to suppress, is the rising populist anger against China.

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The people overwhelmingly understand what nation caused this crisis, and they are well aware of their disproportionate power over their economy and way of life. There has never been a better time to enact a decoupling of U.S. economic and political power from China than this moment.

The process begins with an independent investigation into the origins of the Chinese coronavirus, in which every question is answered. Prominent conservatives have already begun to call for such an inquiry.

This investigation must be insulated from political correctness, and questions must be asked that may offend the sensibilities of the left that reflexively wants to carry water for the communist threat. Legitimate concerns cannot be dismissed because of whining about nonexistent racism and conspiracy theories.

No stone can be left unturned by this investigation. We must look into bioweapon possibilities, the bizarre “Event 201” simulation that occurred before the outbreak, the dangerous viral research facility in Wuhan, and all other possibilities.

Do you think the U.S. should rethink its relationship with China in light of the coronavirus pandemic?

Similar to how the losing side of a war must take responsibility for their crimes after the fact, China should be forced to do the same. China ought to prostrate itself before the nations of the world. A multi-year shaming session is necessary to make sure everyone knows where China stands on the new global pecking order.

The Chinese also need to be coerced into taking substantial internal reforms.

They have to improve their basic hygiene practices, including but not limited to banning wet markets and improving how their meat is prepared, in order to sustain what little bit of their standing they have left in the global markets.

Regardless of their compliance, China must be permanently handicapped as an economic superpower and have its ruthless ambition crushed in a definitive fashion. We should start by imposing a 30 percent tariff on all Chinese imports across the board, eliminating all visas issued to Chinese nationals, recognizing Taiwanese sovereignty and removing China from the World Trade Organization.

Further, the Thousand Talents Program must be rooted out in every bureaucracy, corporation and university throughout America. This is a program, promoted under the guise of diplomacy and cooperation, that has recruited U.S. residents in various power sectors throughout society to sign contracts with a foreign enemy and provide crucial secrets to the Chinese.

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The U.S. must prosecute and levy out maximum sentences to those handing our nation’s infrastructure to the red threat. Furthermore, all individuals who preach the doctrines of Marxism and communism, particularly among the youth, should be classified as enemy foreign agents. Anyone with a possible dual loyalty to our nation’s top threat should be removed from positions of authority.

In one of the many tragedies that will result from coronavirus, China is likely going to avoid being held liable in court for spreading coronavirus throughout the world because of claims of sovereign immunity.

The Chinese will almost certainly be able to protect themselves from any liability using this as their shield. The doctrine of sovereign immunity has permitted Chinese state-owned companies to get away with harming Americans with no recourse allowed by the courts.

As Americans become more aware with these systemic abuses, they will quickly turn against China’s unearned sovereign immunity. Subversive communists cannot be above the law in American courts.

The Chinese, through either malevolence, incompetence or a mixture of both, have cost the global economy trillions of dollars with their actions. They will have to remedy their errors not just to the U.S. but also to the rest of the world.

They will have to operate under special terms, call them reparations perhaps, in which the world can recoup lost wealth at their direct expense. This is just the first painful step that China must endure, with permanent regime change being the primary goal of U.S. foreign policy.

The communist regime that lords over China is a threat that can no longer be tolerated on the world stage.

While countries such as Iran or Venezuela pose significant geopolitical challenges, they pale in comparison to China and what it can accomplish to harm us. The coronavirus pandemic may be just the beginning, as China stoops to new levels of treachery in order to protect its stake in the world economy.

The U.S. cannot afford to wait around and expect reciprocity any longer. Unless he falls in line, dictator Xi Jinping must receive the same treatment that Muammar Gaddafi and Saddam Hussein received when they did not comply with demands.

It may not be difficult to create a bipartisan coalition, either.

China has had an overwhelming role in exasperating American consumerism, filling the corporate trough with its reckless policies of forever-growth, exploiting child labor for the capitalist class, punishing Muslim religious dissidents in concentration camps, fueling the patriarchy with a system of familial piety, poisoning the environment for economic gain and pumping carbon dioxide into the atmosphere at obscene levels.

There is plenty that could be used to get the left on board with an anti-China program.

China has masterfully executed a plan to hollow the U.S. out, remove production capacity, make the country dependent upon cheaply made goods and enable the excesses of capitalism through debt subsidization.

The Chinese are the only party benefiting from this one-sided economic arrangement. Their latest designer import into the West, the novel coronavirus, should be a game changer that severs this harmful status quo.

Despite any objections, the coronavirus pandemic is the crisis that will be used to precipitate massive societal changes. It is our duty on the right to beat the likes of Rahm Emanuel to the punch and make this crisis our oyster, in the U.S. and throughout the world.

Conservatives must use coronavirus to drive an impenetrable wedge between China and the West.

The views expressed in this opinion article are those of their author and are not necessarily either shared or endorsed by the owners of this website. If you are interested in contributing an Op-Ed to The Western Journal, you can learn about our submission guidelines and process here.

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Gavin Wax is the 73rd president of the New York Young Republican Club, chairman of the Association of Young Republican Clubs, digital director of the Young Republican National Federation and an associate fellow at the London Center for Policy Research.
Gavin Wax is the 73rd president of the New York Young Republican Club, chairman of the Association of Young Republican Clubs, digital director of the Young Republican National Federation and an associate fellow at the London Center for Policy Research.