Author Topic: Holding China's Feet to the Fire  (Read 457 times)

Offline David in MN

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Holding China's Feet to the Fire
« on: March 22, 2020, 11:01:45 AM »
As we move through this contagion there needs to be a lasting change. China has been the source of pretty much every modern plague and they finally got the one that stuck.

We live in an integrated society where one can, in 24 hours, be global. A disease vector in Wuhan can demolish Italy. Unless you're a democrat running for president you don't remember the days of taking weeks to traverse a state in a Conestoga wagon while Timmy suffered the consumption.

The hard truth is that most of us will come out the other side unscathed. But then there's this lurking variable... The Chinese didn't act with good faith on the global scale. By that I don't mean people who are ethnically Chinese but the Chinese government. It's worth stating that in their best case scenario they denied the existence of Covid and then jailed doctors who spoke of it and told the WHO it wasn't communicable. All lies.

Do you think "made in China" will be popular in Italy or Iran? How about every global engineering or business student sent home from university? You think a global shutdown won't rankle their heads for a while when it comes to international business?

The Chinese government really hurt their brand. I'll be curious how businesses realign and find new ways to not be subject to the bad faith actor Beijing has proven itself to be. I know people in industry already having these conversations.

Offline Chemsoldier

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Re: Holding China's Feet to the Fire
« Reply #1 on: March 22, 2020, 11:55:54 AM »
I think the Chinese brand is being hurt badly.  They wont see it till things are running again.

That being said, they own a lot of our debt. I assume there is risk in taking actions without the fig leaf of consumer choices such as sending chinese students home...considering the number of students who choose to stay in the US permanently or go home with more americanized ideas than they had before studying here, i dont know if it would be an aggregate win anyway.

Offline Chemsoldier

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Re: Holding China's Feet to the Fire
« Reply #2 on: March 22, 2020, 11:59:49 AM »
I for one support a #buynotchina campaign of some sort.

Offline LvsChant

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Re: Holding China's Feet to the Fire
« Reply #3 on: March 22, 2020, 02:35:06 PM »
I for one support a #buynotchina campaign of some sort.

Yep.

Offline Morning Sunshine

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Re: Holding China's Feet to the Fire
« Reply #4 on: March 22, 2020, 02:46:05 PM »
I for one support a #buynotchina campaign of some sort.

hard to do.  But in a lot of ways I try already.  Anything I want to last longer than a year, I look to see if I can find it made in the US: on Etsy or in my community - furniture, appliances, clothes, etc.
actually.... I bet our school supplies are mostly China - pencils, markers, erasers, etc.

It is our electronics that will be hard.  Are you willing to give up your phones, computers, devices, etc?

Offline IKN

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Re: Holding China's Feet to the Fire
« Reply #5 on: March 22, 2020, 02:52:32 PM »
If it happens, it won't be for some time. Too many big businesses with huge amounts of money sheltered against taxes there and too much manufacturing moved over there.
Well beyond the plants here being closed for a long time, there are a ton of skill sets lost due to not being passed from worker to worker.
A good example I can give was the electrical generating station I worked at had to replace the "Main Power Transformers" for various reasons. These are the transformer that take the output from the generators and steps up the voltage to the electrical grid.
They had to source the new transformers from Spain which also required them to be modified to work with our systems here.
I say "had to" because there's no place left here in the US that makes these big transformer and no one left who even knows how. The old ones made 80+ years ago were built to last. When the demand for them dried up, they quit making them, closed the plants, and lost all the tribal knowledge. All that info and knowledge used before the creation of the digital age lost to time and decay, the workers very aged or dead.
I can still remember all the new engineers coming to the control room and seeing all the old analog relays. Fresh from college and they had no idea what they were even looking at, no longer taught in schools.

Offline LvsChant

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Re: Holding China's Feet to the Fire
« Reply #6 on: March 22, 2020, 03:02:09 PM »
We can try to find non-China alternatives wherever possible... it will probably have to be a gradual thing. Just becoming more aware of that "made in China" label may help a great deal.

Offline David in MN

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Re: Holding China's Feet to the Fire
« Reply #7 on: March 22, 2020, 03:38:52 PM »
I think they stand to lose a lot. Yes, the average consumer might not like "made in China" but suppose the EU (which Italy has a seat at) and the western hemisphere start making travel from China a little harder... It breaks my heart that the innocent international businessman gets hurt because the CCP can't be trusted but thems the skids.

If we see a "significant" reduction in Chinese travel it's the world standing on its head. And we have a globe of people who span the annoyed (like me cancelling a vacation) to the grieved who saw family die. It's going to catch in our craw that the CCP lied to the WHO and let this out.

I'm curious how this plays out. The Chinese government was a bad actor on a global stage. It's one thing to have a pandemic. It's another to try to cover it up and lie to global partners.

The backlash is coming. We live in a world where the CCP has proven itself for being foundationally bad. That will effect business.

Offline David in MN

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Re: Holding China's Feet to the Fire
« Reply #8 on: March 28, 2020, 12:04:54 PM »
The Chinese government is now claiming they are over the peak. Then they re-closed movie theaters. So either something changed or they've been lying. Again.

It's a really sad state of affairs.

Offline LvsChant

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Re: Holding China's Feet to the Fire
« Reply #9 on: March 28, 2020, 01:56:34 PM »
I saw a report from someone saying that the number of cellphone users has dropped by 21 million in the past two months. They say as many as 15 million may be due to migrants and pay for use type customers not using them during the lockdown. But another 6 million is not explained by that theory. It seems likely that at least some of those 6 million may also be virus victims that China isn't reporting.

Offline David in MN

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Re: Holding China's Feet to the Fire
« Reply #10 on: March 28, 2020, 03:41:29 PM »
I saw a report from someone saying that the number of cellphone users has dropped by 21 million in the past two months. They say as many as 15 million may be due to migrants and pay for use type customers not using them during the lockdown. But another 6 million is not explained by that theory. It seems likely that at least some of those 6 million may also be virus victims that China isn't reporting.

I saw those numbers too. So what happens if the Chinese are letting their own die unreported just to save face? Are we going to ban all travel from China? Suppose the whole of the Americas, the EU, and Africa just lock them out... They'd be a backwater in days while we scrambled to replace their production capacity.

But what do you do with the kid who gets caught with his hand in the cookie jar and does it again the instant you turn your back? We all think Chinese manufacturing is a rock solid thing but you throw on some customs paperwork, a quarantine, and a travel restriction and holy cow it's suddenly too expensive to manufacture there and you can't even send the engineers over. Heaven help us if our business insurance doubles rates to insure travel to China.

Most of us lead a pretty spoiled life by historical standards. But let's look this in the eye. The NBA will shutter before criticizing China because of the revenue they make over there. Same for Hollywood. A little blip could cause a big change in a lot of businesses. But how are you going to put that in front of people who watched loved ones die, lost their retirement, and got laid off because the Chinese government repeated lies? Something has to give.

Offline Chemsoldier

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Re: Holding China's Feet to the Fire
« Reply #11 on: March 28, 2020, 04:01:50 PM »
If China is having millions of deaths it will generate a signature that Imagery Intelligence (IMINT) and Measurement and Signature Intelligence (MASINT) will detect.  A fair amount of that capability isn't even governmental (see Google Earth) anymore.

If it is of that magnitude, it will be found out and it will be even worse for them than just admitting it up front.

Offline mountainmoma

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Re: Holding China's Feet to the Fire
« Reply #12 on: March 28, 2020, 04:12:50 PM »
If China is having millions of deaths it will generate a signature that Imagery Intelligence (IMINT) and Measurement and Signature Intelligence (MASINT) will detect.  A fair amount of that capability isn't even governmental (see Google Earth) anymore.

If it is of that magnitude, it will be found out and it will be even worse for them than just admitting it up front.

didnt that already happen when all the mobile crematories where brought to Wuhan and you could see all the heat signatures etc... ?  So, I think it isnt that they are having millions now but that they did. 

Offline David in MN

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Re: Holding China's Feet to the Fire
« Reply #13 on: March 28, 2020, 04:36:07 PM »
Worth repeating that their best case scenario is that they have lax food safety laws, lied about the severity to the WHO, and made up false data to support their claims. Their worst case, and it's almost unthinkable, is that they did this whole thing on purpose and engineered a global plague.

You must make business decisions and even the best of all options is bad. Is your business going to send you to a country that has disease risk, poor medical care, and a willingness to lie about your well-being? Will other countries accept their travelers?

This is what's really sickening. The Chinese need to come clean and quick. Otherwise it's not the corrupt government but the common man and women who may well be shut out of global trade where the bloodbath will hit.

Offline Chemsoldier

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Re: Holding China's Feet to the Fire
« Reply #14 on: March 28, 2020, 04:41:00 PM »
didnt that already happen when all the mobile crematories where brought to Wuhan and you could see all the heat signatures etc... ?  So, I think it isnt that they are having millions now but that they did.
MASINT is slow, like forensic stuff.  They may have already seen it, but lining up all the stuff to say more than "thats a lot of heat" takes time. Especially fusing it with other INTs to make the case tighter.  Once they do though, it will be a lot more damning.