It has become painfully clear that the ChiComs do not want to play by the same international rules that civilized nations follow
By: Jon Dougherty @TheNatSent
(TNS) Older Americans remember when Japan became an industrial powerhouse and supplanted the United States as the world’s supplier of goods.
Back then, “Made in Japan” was synonymous with “cheap consumer goods,” though the products that the country turned out were generally of decent quality — and lower in price.
But then something happened. In the early 1970s, the Nixon administration, keen to improve relations with China, opened a dialogue with the isolated regime there, and nothing was ever the same.
“Nixon goes to China” was supported by most of the foreign policy establishment, and for good reason: The aim of opening up to China was to undermine the country’s Communist leadership by showing ordinary Chinese what life is like on the other side of the economic spectrum.
Over the course of the next three decades, American investment dollars flowed into China while U.S. corporations moved their operations from the higher-priced American labor market to the mainland.
However, nothing really changed in terms of how China was led. The Communist Party continues to rule to this day in its typical oppressive, authoritarian manner.
But in the process of trying to woo China with dollars and democracy, the coronavirus pandemic has shown us just how reliant — well, over-reliant — we have become on Chinese manufacturing (and the government that runs it).
When Japan was the industrial powerhouse and principle supplier of world goods, Tokyo was nevertheless an ally (and continues to be to this day). Beijing never was, never has been, and very likely will never be. And yet, we allowed the ChiCom regime to absorb our manufacturing, making us ever-so-reliant on a potential enemy.
That said, Japan is showing us a way out of our dilemma, as it seems Tokyo is in a similar bind as we are: Overreliance on a potential enemy.
Japan has earmarked hundreds of billions of yen of its coronavirus stimulus relief to go toward helping its manufacturing companies move their production plants out of communist China and back to Japan or to other countries.
“The extra budget, compiled to try to offset the devastating effects of the pandemic, includes 220 billion yen (US$2 billion) for companies shifting production back to Japan and 23.5 billion yen for those seeking to move production to other countries, according to details of the plan posted online,” Bloomberg News reported.
“That has renewed talk of Japanese firms reducing their reliance on China as a manufacturing base. The government’s panel on future investment last month discussed the need for manufacturing of high-added value products to be shifted back to Japan, and for production of other goods to be diversified across Southeast Asia.
“Japan exports a far larger share of parts and partially finished goods to China than other major industrial nations, according to data compiled for the panel. A February survey by Tokyo Shoko Research found 37 percent of the more than 2,600 companies that responded were diversifying procurement to places other than China amid the coronavirus crisis.”
The Washington Post’s Josh Rogin noted that things between the U.S. and China in a post-coronavirus world won’t be the same, either, and we can bank on that as long as Donald Trump remains our president (since he’s the first leader since Nixon to put the brakes on the complete outsourcing of our manufacturing capability to Beijing):
It’s difficult to gauge — in the middle of the crisis — how exactly the U.S.-China relationship is changing. But everyone senses it will never be the same. Political leaders in Washington and Beijing have put their war of words on hold for the moment. But there is clear evidence that China is planning to use the crisis to its economic and political advantage worldwide.
Inside the Beltway, Republicans attack Democrats, Joe Biden and the media for not being critical enough of the Chinese Communist Party. Democrats attack President Trump for saying “Chinese virus” and attack any Republicans who blame the coronavirus pandemic on the CCP as racist.
Yet a new poll shows that, outside the Beltway, the coronavirus crisis is actually bringing Americans together on the China issue. Republicans and Democrats now largely agree that the Chinese government bears responsibility for the spread of the pandemic, that it can’t be trusted on this or any other issue, and that the U.S. government should maintain a tough position on China on trade and overall, especially if Beijing again falters in its commitments.
Add this: The New York Post reported that China sort of ‘cornered the market’ on personal protective equipment — the medical masks, gloves, and gowns our hospitals and healthcare providers desperately need — and then refused to ship them.
“One of the — one of the things that this crisis has taught us is that we are dangerously over-dependent on a global supply chain for our medicines, like penicillin; our medical supplies, like masks; and our medical equipment, like ventilators,” White House trade adviser Peter Navarro said.
“We have — right now as we speak, over 50 countries have already imposed some forms of export restrictions in their country against the rest of the world. And what we’ve — what we’re learning from that is that no matter how many treaties you have, no matter how many alliances, no matter how many phone calls, when push comes to shove you run the risk, as a nation, of not having what you need,” he added.
It has become painfully clear that the ChiComs do not want to play by the same international rules that civilized nations follow. So it’s time to cut our ties, cut our losses, get our companies back home, and let the regime in Beijing deal with isolation again.
And tell them,”Good luck with that.”
This article originally appeared at The National Sentinel and was republished with permission.
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