I Prayed have prayed
Lord, please give our nation’s leaders wisdom as they interact with those of other nation’s in all manner of diplomatic relations. May we be a land that stands strong for life, liberty, and the pursuit of true happiness — a pursuit only able to be fulfilled in You.

The new year brought a new geopolitical reality to bear in the Pacific. On January 1 a major multi-nation trade deal took effect. China is in. The U.S. is not. And many observers are wondering what this may portend for American influence in the region.

The trade agreement is known as the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP). It’s a deal that promises to reduce roughly 90 percent of tariffs between its parties, which includes the 10 nations of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) along with 5 other major players in the region: Australia, Japan, New Zealand, South Korea… and China. 

All told this new trade bloc is the largest in the world, covering an area with about 30 percent of the earth’s population and 30 percent of global gross domestic product (GDP). It is particularly notable for being the first such deal including China, Japan, and South Korea together. 

China did not dictate the terms of RCEP, but it is viewed as a victor in the deal. At the time RCEP was hammered out, Citi Research said, “The diplomatic messaging of RCEP may be just as important as the economics — a coup for China.”

How so? Well, at least one consideration is that productive trade between nations tends to build interdependence. Or at least it gives a nation’s leaders a financial reason to be extra careful when tensions flare among trade partners.

It’s noteworthy that after RCEP took effect, the Trade Minister of Australia ( a country that has had its run-ins with China in recent years) praised the agreement, saying it “will help stimulate growth and investment across the region” and “will advantage local sourcing of goods and promote collaboration through regional value chains, which our businesses are primed to partake in.”

All the while, the United States appears to some to be on the outside looking in. That is largely due to its absence from what analysts believe was a much more robust Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP). 

President Donald Trump exited that deal just as he promised to during in his 2016 campaign, and President Joe Biden has not moved to re-engage the band of nations that continued on under the deal’s auspices (CPTPP).

Now Trump had reasons for his decision. In 2015, he said that “I learned a long time ago, a bad deal is far worse than no deal at all,” and he believed TPP was bad for American businesses, workers, and for our nation’s trade interests. A number of Democrats, including Sen. Bernie Sanders, also vigorously opposed the deal. In fact, they fired arrows at Trump when he suggested his administration take another look at TPP in 2018 — a fact surely on Biden’s mind.

If you’re like me, you’re not an expert on the nuances of TPP, RCEP, and their relationship with bilateral trade deals the U.S. has in place. Nor do you and I know all the likely repercussions for domestic industries under any of these agreements. The reason we elect leaders is for them to wisely guide our nation. 

But what I do note is that there are deals that are leaving the U.S. out — deals that have potential geopolitical, as well as economic, ramifications. It is noteworthy to me that the Council on Foreign Relations released a report last fall stating, “RCEP creates one of the world’s largest trade blocs, and analysts say it is another sign, along with the CPTPP, that countries in the region are moving on without the United States.”

I have no doubt these new developments — and China’s role in them — are not going unnoticed in our government’s halls of power. We need to pray for those leaders to make the right moves to reinforce our nation’s economy and security now and in the years to come. 

What are your thoughts–is the global economy leaving the U.S. behind?

( Aaron Mercer is a Contributing Writer with two decades of experience in Washington, D.C.’s public policy arena. Photo Credit: Getty Images )

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Ray
January 16, 2022

There are divisions in this nation never seen before. There are political divisions, spiritual divisions and racial divisions which are undermining this nation, especially the spiritual divisions. It is spiritual compromise, which is causing the most damage to this nation. We all need to be more dedicated to Jesus Christ and the Christian Way. After all, He has offered us a gift that no one else will ever be able to offer us…..The Gift of Salvation! It will also resolve these divisions.
John I 4:11 Beloved, if God so loved us, we ought also to love one another.

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Arthur
January 15, 2022

These trade deals may be primarily moves to create geopolitical regions in transition to a new world order. That is, they may be injecting UN control.

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HC Williamson
January 15, 2022

Any *deal ” with China is a one-sided concession to give up our mfg,,research expertise which they steal or copy, THEN INVEST MORE DANGEROUSLY IN MILITARY SUPERIORITY.
The nations that deal with China will find China ruling them soon !

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Shpend Shyti
January 15, 2022

It’s sad to see how politicians and business leaders are deeply corrupted and it’s clear they work in the benefit of China against American people.

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Karen Torino
January 15, 2022

If you remember, the TPP had much more than trade agreements involved in it as most Democratic initiatives and legislation does. Just another way to hide money that somehow finds a substantial portion going back into their pockets and those of the corrupt leaders of other countries.

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Patty
January 15, 2022

America needs to Not need China at all. If Australia wants China let them have her. Biden is not smart enough to negotiate this. We need to pray in God’s plan for this opportunity. Not mans.

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Teresa Daigrepont
January 15, 2022

If Chinese students will continue to export our technology, while American authorities look the other way, this can be pretty bad. We need to quit being lazy and naive. Americans need to think about the origin of the products they use, and stop buying frivolous things from overseas. Live local. Build community. Patronize mom and pop stores.

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Terry
January 15, 2022

We need wisdom of our government on this issue Biden hast to address this before we’re locked out of all trade deals. We are the consumers what does this mean for us food imports? Material supplies what are we get from Australia and South Korea we know we get everything from China will that continue on another agreement with the US and China with tariffs it doesn’t sound like it we need a lot of help on this front this could be a very serious thing for America.

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    DuckDuck
    January 15, 2022

    Im afraid that is not an option we should entertain as by his performance this far would give greater fear of the results than not being a part of.

Victoria Z
January 15, 2022

Father the bible says, “For we do not know what to pray for as we ought, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us with groanings too deep for words” (Romans 8:26 ESV)

Many of us do not understand the intricacies of these agreements and even if we did there are times when Your perfect will may conflict with what even seems like a good deal, because you may have plans to prosper us supernaturally or we may need a period of discipline in being left out. Only You know Your perfect will for our nation and we pray that you would put it in the hearts of your intecessors to pray it through and then bring it to pass. Our nation is in a dire mess spiritually as well as financially and politically, and all the more if there was truly gross and deliberate fraud in 2020 election and we need your intervention now Father as we have seen the spiritual and financial state of our nation worsen quickly. Our nation was under a period of blessing when President Trump gave glory to your name, and simply put America First. We pray to go a step further and have our nations leaders and citizens as a whole be convicted by your Holy Spirit to put YOU first, which seems like a lofty goal, however the Bible says you ARE LOVE, so a great start would be a Holy Spirit conviction to be mindful of and practice true brotherly love and human kindness, not just a form of outward religiin and godliness like the phairsees had but true kindness, we can not hope to attain a pure spirit of true love without your help but a goal toward true ethics, kindness, and brotherly by all would be a great help. Our nation is populated with diverse religions most Judeo/Christian and Muslim that promote the God of Abraham and most of the rest religions that promote love and other great virtues. Even if every person was convicted to actually practice their own good and virtious beliefs it would be a better nation a better world, yet the ultimate will be the outpouring of YOUR Holy Spirit and the true and full gospel of Jesus Christ. Father you know the believers and religions that wink at compromise, promiscuity, and sexual pervisions and i pray a true and undeniable conviction on them to repent as well as people whose beliefs or lack thereof allow them to engage in compromise and at worst the more henious and gross sins against other human beings as well as crimes against you and humanity by violent religious extremists who are bound by prideful spirits of religious hatred. Father whatever the religions or beliefs here, have mercy on our nation, our citizens, and pour out a holy spirit of deep conviction such that people will actually realize and hate their sins regardless of their religion, and truly desire a clean and pure heart and mind, and absolute TRUTH, as even many professing bible believing Jews, Christians, and Muslims are guilty of being workers of iniquity as the Phairsees were, yet sadly they believe they are right with you and right toward others. Father we need YOUR spirit to GREATLY convict and do a work in each and every American as sadly preaching from many pulpits has has failed as so many churches are full of flesh and compromise including many preachers, with people serving as Teachers and prophets who do not have a true calling and anointing from you, therefore we have seen a widespread false and incomplete gospel of convenience promising fire insurance which has failed those who have embraced it as it lacked true respect and relationship with you, your word, and holiness, and carrying our own cross, and relied instead on false teachings and doctrines as well as the arm of flesh. Even having a bible in the home fails when it is not read prayerfully and regularly, your word is alive and quick and powerful, but it needs to be read and put into practice and taught under a true anointing of Your Holy spirit. Our nation is in a dire place spiritually, financially, politically, and our only hope is you working through your spirit to truly convict all regardless of their faith, of their unloving and unethical ways and to raise up truly anointed ministries to then preach the full gospel to draw all to the TRUTH, the Lover of their Souls, and true salvation, in Jesus name thank you for hearing and answering our prayer.

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    Teresa Daigrepont
    January 15, 2022

    Bless you sister for this well articulated prayer. I want to copy and save it to read over.

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Julie
January 15, 2022

It sounds “selfish” but I think it’s time for the USA to take care of and foster business in the USA. Our country has great resources and amazing people–we need support from our government for business here!

I read a meme that says it all, IMO: “What other countries collect taxes from their citizens and then send that money to support other countries?”

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    Victoria Z
    January 15, 2022

    countless amens to that, Father hear our prayer, the golden rule is to love others AS we love ourself, we do need a period of learning how to help and love ourself first, Trump may have bern sidelined for now but our nation truly needs to remember his goal to put America first, and He as a president gave glory to God which I pray Biden would do

    10
Deb
January 15, 2022

America has military all over the planet which is very well planned for as long as America has this we are powerful and have no need to fear. America needs to build up the country and educate the youth get rid of drugs,poverty,crime. Career politicians that inflate their wealth and do nothing for the country at Large

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