Mussolini in Beijing

The Chinese model of state-directed capitalism is coming apart — and it’s unleashing a new authoritarianism.

President Xi Jinping attends a business forum with Italian and Chinese businessmen at the Quirinale Palace in Rome, Italy, March 22, 2019. (Alessandra Benedetti-Corbis / Getty Images)

In 2008, before his first serious bid for the US presidency, Donald Trump expressed unreserved admiration for China’s economic model. Back then, China was seen as a place where capitalists like him could freely pursue profits without any regulatory restraints: In China, they fill up hundreds of acres of land, constantly dumping and dumping dirt […]

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