The Nytimes has an article obstensibly relaying the Chinese government's concern about our economy and how they will insist that the United States do the proper things from their point of view.
Yet, the fact is "we" owe them a trillion dollars. We have already spent that money. There is nothing for them to show for it but pieces of paper. They trusted our country, and will have to continue doing so in order to get their money back in the form of goods and services in the future.
As long as we have thousands of nuclear weapons, the United States is the big boy on the block, no matter what financial system we employ. Regardless of our fiscal or monetary situation in the near future, China needs us more than we need them. If need be, we can stop borrowing so much from abroad, or just find new buyers.
This is a lesson to those who lend money, if you're not careful the borrower becomes king.
Now mind you, I advocate paying our debts to the world. It is the right thing to do. It is the prudent move economically to keep economic order.
It's just that these politicians in our country and abroad who keep talking about a day when we aren't able to borrow from the world markets at a reasonable price are either lieing or misinformed.