And the contents of your posts are only your opinions. What else would they be? And in 150 years, that trend has not added up to much of any significant portion of the Caribbean being politically integrated with the USA - which is what you were trying to demonstrate to support your contention that all countries in the South China Sea will, in the short term, politically unify with China. If you've defined your position down to "as China gets wealthy, lots of Chinese will visit the Philippines and maybe retire there, and the Yuan might get used as a de facto currency" then we have no dispute. But you are arguing for explicit political integration, no? That's a lie. I included a direct, factual analysis of the exact data you invoked, and showed how it doesn't bear out your contentions (either about politics in the Caribbean, or about politics in the South China Sea). You apparently have no substantial response to that, so instead are pursuing a rear-guard maneuver of levelling accusations at me and baldly repeating yourself. Those forces are at least as strong as anything in the South China Sea, and have been so for well over a century now. This "US linkage," whatever you mean by that, should be fully visible by now. If similar forces are going to drive political integration of the Philippines with China within 100 years, then we'd expect the entire Caribbean basin to be politically unified with the USA decades ago. But Europeans leaving isn't the same thing as unification with the USA. The Europeans left many Caribbean islands long, long ago, which still have not unified with the USA. Hoisting a new flag is not the same thing as political independence. Having a holiday called "independence day" is not the same thing as political independence. What you describe there is a suzerain relationship, not political independence. I'm unclear on why you're still arguing this. You seem to understand perfectly well what the relationship between Curacao and the Netherlands is, and that it is not independence. There's nothing "slow" about what you propose there. You are making predictions that are dramatic and radical. In the first place, that's not clear. It could well be that the US manages to mediate some kind of solution there, or anyway practically limit China's ability to prevent others from exploiting their claims. In the second place, even if we grant the premise there, I do not see where Philippino sovereignty is valued below access to fossil fuels in the South China Sea. Like most nation-states, the Philippinos are zealous about their sovereignty and long have been. The suggestion that Philippinos will decide to give up their sovereignty for the chance to get a piece of some offshore oil exploration is just silly on its face. Again, even if we grant the assumption there, it doesn't follow that the Philippines would politically unify with China. China already gives North Korea way more aid than the US does. Does that imply that North Korea is going to unify with China? The understanding of how sovereignty functions and relates to economic development and international relations implied by your prescriptions here just seems looney. Economic integration is not political integration. Again, even if we grant the premise it doesn't get us to political unification. The Philippines could perfectly well pursue some kind of political accomodation with China that would not entail unification. For that matter, I don't see China even wanting to take on the Philippines. They're a foreign nation with a very different (Catholic!) identity and history, and a whole set of problems relating to poverty, insurgency, etc. There's nothing in the definition of "country" that implies political independence. Go and look on Wikipedia under "list of sovereign states" and you won't find "Curacao." Look under the list of "constituent countries" (i.e., countries that are not politically independent) and you'll find "Curacao" listed under "Kingdom of the Netherlands." No countries became politically independent on 10/8/10. Every territory in question remains part of the Kingdom of the Netherlands to this day. "Municipalities" is the term.