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Jun 13th 2012 8:38PM When you get a chance, you should ask a Vietnamese local about his/her feelings regarding the US and its gov't. More often than not, you'll get a reluctant idea of just what "bullying and terrorising" really means. The South East Asia Sea kerfuffle is really a demonstration of how bad China is at PR (hint: incredibly bad, but there's a somewhat sensible reason for that), especially in contrast to the superbly well-oiled machine that the US runs.
Jun 13th 2012 8:30PM Agreed on the Lama reincarnation thing. That was not only a pathetically childish move, but a perfectly useless one, though I wouldn't say that the US gov't has been any less hubristic (but far, far smarter) in its more theologically oriented laws.
It is rather difficult to avoid Chinese-made products nowadays, especially in the computing sector. Even Asian companies (Samsung, Sharp, etc.) have manufacturing bases in China, not to every single US computer company. Having only shopped at Walmart a couple of times in my life, I can't say that I really feel that Walmart has a special connection to China. Target, Kmart, Sears, etc. are all well-stocked with "Made in China" products.
Jun 13th 2012 8:24PM "Officially," Tibet is part of China, no matter how loudly the Tibetan independence folks screech to the contrary (interesting fact: the Dalai Lama hasn't supported Tibetan independence for several years now).
Further, your quip about the Chinese simply being "a billion or so sheep" goes to show just how ignorant you are about what China is really like. Care to look up a few simple statistics about the daily rate of political protest in China? It would make the Vietnam War protests over here look like little more than a weekend picket session.
As for a massive grassroots political protest that overthrows the central gov't, you do know that that very succinctly describes how the Communist Party came to power, right? For someone so confident in his political commentary, I sure hope you did.
Jun 13th 2012 8:20PM China hardly needed to change any views about human rights to make the US its ideological brethren. After all, "enemy combatant" was the American way of dancing around the Geneva Convention, and I doubt that everyone has honestly forgotten Gitmo so quickly.
As for those "small countries that really need our purchases," they're actually beating China at its own game. China's labor practices have been (slowly) improving over the last twenty years, to the point where those "small countries" with no enforced laws against child labor and forced labor (most of the Southeast Asian countries, Sri Lanka, etc.) can provide cheaper labor than China. US companies have moved their outsourcing accordingly.
As for thinking of the bottom line, the "bottom line" is the sole goal of "capitalism," which we Americans seem to be in love with when talking abstractly, but conspicuously brush under the rug when talking about its less moral effects. Case in point, your "we do not deliberately try to hurt other human beings" line is definitely not part of the American way. Not since before the US was the US.
The Chinese gov't is already a huge part of the world community, though it's amusing that "they've gotta be just like an Axis power or a Cold-War-era US proxy nation" is apparently your requirement for officially endorsing their status as such.
Jun 13th 2012 8:10PM Accusations of "world tyranny" by an American are just a tad hypocritical. A citizen of the nation that has invaded countries halfway around the world (surely I don't need to cite examples) and carried out decades of "wetwork" assassinations aimed at installing puppet regimes (look up how many times the CIA tried to assassinate Castro if you want a bit of relevant dark humor) is accusing the country it promptly turned on after World War 2 a "tyrant"? Curious.
I'm sorry, but most of the stuff you don't consider "cheap crap" was made in China (e.g. virtually every consumer-grade computer in the last decade), or other, poorer countries with far laxer labor laws (Vietnam, Cambodia, Thailand, etc.). Walmart is hardly a one-stop shop for all things outsourced.
Jun 13th 2012 8:03PM The US already did that, though not under any particular "civil unrest" guise. It was called the Chinese Exclusion Act, and to this day, it is the only explicitly race-based immigration ban in US history.
Applause all around, right?