Courtesy of Marc Faber, The Gloom, Boom & Doom Report

The British-American author and journalist Christopher Eric Hitchens (1949–2011)…once recounted a story about Chou En-lai, who served as the first Premier of the People’s Republic of China from 1954 until his death in 1976. According to Hitchens, Chou had been invited to speculate on how the course of history would have been altered if, say, Nikita Khrushchev had been assassinated instead of John F. Kennedy. Chou’s austere version of Marxism made him dubious about the importance of things like sheer accident and mere individuals. But in this instance, he was prepared to allow that things might have been different. How different? “Well,” said Chou with complete gravity, “I hardly think that Aristotle Onassis would have married Mrs. Khrushchev.”