My first trip to China was to teach market-based economics in 1987 at the Shanghai University of Finance & Economics.
While historical perspective may not be necessary to marvel at how modern China has become, it is hard to convey the contrast to those that did not experience the “old” China.
Decades of central planning had brought this great culture with its vibrant mass of humanity to & from the brink of starvation.
China is now a consumerist society on a grand scale with stores offering the most expensive designer labels lining the streets.
This transformation is a tribute to the wisdom of Deng Xiaoping in his understanding that trading would be the way for China to be rich again. Apparently, he chose Adam Smith over Karl Marx in saying that “to be rich is glorious”.
This simple sentence recognized that income differentials are not an economic problem & that by serving others anyone can (and should!) become rich.