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China, Unocal, and "protectionists"

The elites appear to be referring to those opposed to China's proposed hostile takeover of Unocal using the smear word "protectionists."

As an example, the WaPo column from Sebastian Mallady entitled "China's Latest 'Threat'" (washingtonpost . com/wp-dyn/content/article/2005/06/26/AR2005062601033.html) uses that word no less than 8 times in just 12 paragraphs:

...The Unocal bid brings China one step closer to stirring up the sort of full-blown protectionist fury that confronted Japan two decades ago. Critics were already anxious about China's global strength in low-end manufacturing, its allegedly manipulative currency policy and its piracy of U.S. intellectual property. Now they can also worry about China's acquisition of U.S. companies...

There's much more to be concerned about concerning China, as will be covered below. And, there are big differences between that country and Japan.

...The Japanese paid inflated prices for Hollywood studios and landmark New York buildings. The exiting American owners made off with a nice profit. The Japanese got burned...

So what? Is there any indication that China is bidding an inflated price? Even it's a little high, wouldn't the acquisition serve China's other goals?

You can see why this is not the dominant view in Congress. China is, after all, a communist dictatorship, and we shouldn't assume its intentions are friendly.

This is the only reference to the larger, not-completely-financial issue.

The same blindered viewpoint is presented in the LAT article "Greenspan Opposes Sanctions on China" (latimes . com/business/la-fi-uschina24jun24,1,5617723.story):

As the proposed Chinese purchase of Unocal Corp. fanned protectionist passions in Congress, Federal Reserve Chairman Alan Greenspan warned senators Thursday not to let their frustrations with China's economic policies breed reactions that would do the U.S. economy more harm than good... Schumer said his bill was not protectionist...

For those who are intelligent enough to see that the market is not the be all and end all, now see "Chinese dragon awakens" (washingtontimes . com/specialreport/20050626-122138-1088r.htm):

China is building its military forces faster than U.S. intelligence and military analysts expected, prompting fears that Beijing will attack Taiwan in the next two years, according to Pentagon officials.

U.S. defense and intelligence officials say all the signs point in one troubling direction: Beijing then will be forced to go to war with the United States, which has vowed to defend Taiwan against a Chinese attack...

Unfortunately, the China hawks appear to be Rumsfeld and other Neocons. But, at least it's good to know that there are some adults around.

See also the 2000 article "Is China in Control of the Panama Canal?" (newsmax . com/articles/?a=2000/4/5/80227) and search for "Hutchison Whampoa".

Sun, 06/26/2005 - 19:24 · Importance: 1

Mon, 06/27/2005 - 16:53
John S Bolton
www.johnsbolton.net

In the decidedly doubtful category. There is no rational argument for receiving stolen goods, which is why smear methods such as saying with sharply negative connotations, that anyone who disagrees is protectionist on a slippery slope to autarky, or a mercantilist, or a paranoid hawk, or intolerant, etc. These Chinese goods can only come in at such high volume by stealing; our current account deficit is over $500 billion. This can only be financed by central bank plundering operations. Greenspan is observing an omerta on how exactly this is done; what his reasons for doing this are not clear.

Sun, 06/26/2005 - 23:41
eh

Recall China's belligerent behavior around the time of the downing of the Navy spy plane. Also recently regarding the protests against Japanese textbooks. Or simply their militant stance regarding Taiwan.

The US has a large (and growing yearly) number of rather unassimilated Chinese immigrants. In fact, there are so many that the PRC is regularly excluded from the annual 'diversity visa lottery':

http://travel.state.gov/visa/immigrants/types/types_1318.html

(Not the Irish, though -- they can thank Ted Kennedy for their permanent eligibility.)

Regarding any possibly future conflict: Where are the loyalties of these people?