China joins Russia in opposing Nato expansion


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Russia has a smaller GDP than Italy.

If we were to liken international politics to car racing and assign money based off of nominal (not PPP) GDP:

The US walks in with 100k to spend on his car.

China has 73k to spend on his car.

Russia has 7k to spend on his car, this does jump to 19k if Russia uses car parts that he buys from his brother (domestically, so PPP adjusted).

NATO countries (minus US) have about 80k to spend, but they don't like to spend it on cars.

Japan has about 22k to spend but their parents say they can't own a car so they spend it on 'go-carts' with engines. The go-cart can't leave Japan.

Taiwan has about 3k to spend but also has to buy parts on the DL.

Russia revving the engine of his car may sound good but there are a bunch of pieces that have been bought at cut prices, rusted through because they come from his old car, or made by his brother and are of questionable quality.

Edit: A bunch of replies have come in to the affect of 'you should use PPP for all and not nominal'. The most common PPP 'basket' for calculating PPP is geared towards consumer goods. Just because xyz consumer good is cheaper in X country doesn't really mean that domestically produced military goods are cheaper too. Further, if the military goods are imported then using the nominal number is much better than the PPP. Military goods also include things needed to run a military such as oil. There are also other adjusters that may make a similar difference to the effectiveness of spending X dollars on the military. Corruption can result in less effective spending and so can an emphasis on political study such as in China.

Ultimately it matters little if Russia has 7k or 19k or 2k to build his proverbial car. What should be clear from the numbers that that Russia's car would clearly need help from someone else to be comparable in the long term to any major power.

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