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Thread: China's Subsidized Auto Industry

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    Quote Originally Posted by lazlo View Post
    My British, Canadian and Australian friends certainly think so. How many consumer goods are still manufactured in the West? Even the stalwarts like Metabo and Bosch are increasingly made in China. The UK steel industry has been gutted, Record gone, Myford gone, ... The Australians jokingly refer to themselves as "China's strip mine," China's buying-up tens of billions in Canadian oilsands...

    China invests billions in Canada oil sands

    Other than that, yes -- China is exclusively an American problem
    I suppose it all depends on what glasses we use when viewing the "problem".

    Foreign cars get made in the USA as so many other things. I know a few Danish companies that have companies in the USA that manufacture for them.

    "China-invests-billions-in-oil-sands". The word I notice in that is "invest". Invest isn't quite the same as buying and I'm betting all countries wish they had money to invest.

    China, or any other country, will be a problem if those in the lead don't try and stay in the lead by being innovative. New products, styles and fashion changes very rapidly nowadays thanks to TV and the internet.

    http://www.danishinnovation.dk/index.html

    http://en.fivu.dk/the-minister

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    Quote Originally Posted by Gordon B. Clarke View Post
    "China-invests-billions-in-oil-sands". The word I notice in that is "invest". Invest isn't quite the same as buying
    The Chinese are buying shares of the companies controlling the oilsands and pipelines:

    "Chinese firms are rushing to snap up Canadian oil sands resources and invest in ongoing projects - to the tune of $15 billion in the past 18 months in Alberta alone.

    Most of the recent deals have been by Chinese companies buying shares in existing projects. For instance, Sinopec spent $4.65 billion last year buying ConocoPhillips' 9 percent stake in Syncrude Canada Ltd., the world's biggest oil sands producer. And earlier this summer, state-owned CNOOC spent $2.1 billion acquiring the bankrupt OPTI Canada, whose main asset was a 35 percent working interest in Nexen's Long Lake oil sands project in Alberta."


    ConocoPhillips is, of course, an American company. So you can argue that the Canadians are going from one devil to another

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    Quote Originally Posted by Gordon B. Clarke View Post
    China, or any other country, will be a problem if those in the lead don't try and stay in the lead by being innovative. New products, styles and fashion changes very rapidly nowadays thanks to TV and the internet.

    Danish Innovation Institute
    Sure, although a major portion of Danish trade balance with China is from Maersk: you own the ships that are transporting China's products all over the world

    Agree completely about driving innovation as a way of offsetting China's ability to cheaply manufacture simple components. If China starts developing their own Apple iPads or Nokia smart phones, the hole will get much deeper.

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    Quote Originally Posted by lazlo View Post
    Sure, although a major portion of Danish trade balance with China is from Maersk: you own the ships that are transporting China's products all over the world

    Agree completely about driving innovation as a way of offsetting China's ability to cheaply manufacture simple components. If China starts developing their own Apple iPads or Nokia smart phones, the hole will get much deeper.
    I'm hoping you know that Maersk is and was used by the USA to freight your military supplies around the globe?

    Maersk is a Danish family owned business and have always been very pro American. You might find this link interesting
    Mærsk Mc-Kinney Møller - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

    I'm also assuming you know that Maersk is much more than shipping
    Maersk Line shipping containers worldwide

    It's Maersk that has the rights to the Danish sector of the North Sea for oil and gas and we have (yet) more than enough to meet our own needs.
    Maersk - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
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    Touched a nerve -- sorry Gordon

    Quote Originally Posted by Gordon B. Clarke View Post
    I'm hoping you know that Maersk is and was used by the USA to freight your military supplies around the globe?

    Maersk is a Danish family owned business and have always been very pro American. You might find this link interesting
    Mærsk Mc-Kinney Møller - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
    Yes, absolutely -- my comment was in no way a criticism of Denmark. I was just pointing out that Denmark is caught-up in the China debacle with the rest of the "West".

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    Quote Originally Posted by lazlo View Post
    Touched a nerve -- sorry Gordon

    Yes, absolutely -- my comment was in no way a criticism of Denmark. I was just pointing out that Denmark is caught-up in the China debacle with the rest of the "West".
    You didn't touch a nerve You have your opinions, I have mine
    I'm just rationally defending mine as you are yours.

    It's things like when you write "China debacle" I disagree with you. When the Soviet Union existed then the world wasn't a safe place just as a "poor" China wasn't the best scenario for world peace. The Chinese friends I have are certainly not anti American and in fact I've heard them express disatisfaction with several things in China just as Americans (and I suppose many in just about every country in the world) aren't happy with their leadership. Truth be told I've never heard a Chinese (and no, I don't know thousands and certainly not millions) say anything negative about the USA. I was very surprised in fact to hear how many family members of those I know in China have relatives living, working and studying in the USA.

    Sure the Chinese way of thinking is different in many ways to "ours" but our next door neighbours' (Germany and Sweden) way of thinking is also different to ours

    I'll make a provocative statement China is changing and that's good. Is the USA? Of course something that is "perfect" can't be improved but is any country perfect?

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    Quote Originally Posted by lazlo View Post
    Agree completely about driving innovation as a way of offsetting China's ability to cheaply manufacture simple components. If China starts developing their own Apple iPads or Nokia smart phones, the hole will get much deeper.
    I'm not really sure they care that much about innovation. The Apple iPads and lots of other innovative products end up getting made in China anyway. And they do offer western technology companies quite a package to go there - compared that to here where manufacture seems to be some kind of dirty word as far as public policies and politics go.

    I think innovation as an offset is overrated. It works for the shareholders or owners, in the sense that money comes back from intellectual rights, but as as job creation goes it just keep a few designers and engineers going.

    Innovation is a temporary advantage which needs constant renewal and advance just to keep the position of slightly ahead. Not many companies can keep up with that over time. And when I look around me very few things are based on cutting edge innovation. So I don't think you can base the economy of an entire society on innovation alone - 90-95% of manufacture and trade are not cutting edge, and we can't all be engineers, designers and venture investors.

    That said, I do of course agree that it would be even more difficult without that innovative advantage - it does pull in the right direction, I just don't think it is more then partial answer.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Gordon B. Clarke View Post
    It's things like when you write "China debacle" I disagree with you. When the Soviet Union existed then the world wasn't a safe place just as a "poor" China wasn't the best scenario for world peace.
    That's probably a good analogy -- the Cold War. Now we have a economic war, where China is systematically extinguishing all competing industries through aggressive government sponsorship -- "subsidizing". In the next five years, the West won't be able to make an electric drill, let alone bridge segments or nuclear pressure vessels or oil pipe.

    The Chinese friends I have are certainly not anti American and in fact I've heard them express disatisfaction with several things in China just as Americans (and I suppose many in just about every country in the world) aren't happy with their leadership. Truth be told I've never heard a Chinese (and no, I don't know thousands and certainly not millions) say anything negative about the USA.
    It's not about the Chinese citizens. It's a communist country. They're exploiting their peasants to dominate the world's economy. Has nothing to do with bigotry or racism. Most of the other Asian nations are successful Democracies with strong economies: Japan, Taiwan, Korea...

    I'll make a provocative statement China is changing and that's good. Is the USA? Of course something that is "perfect" can't be improved but is any country perfect?
    Oh, the US is far from good. As you implied earlier, our financial geniuses caused the world-wide recession in 2008. But I disagree with the claim that "China is changing". China is still an utterly corrupt, despotic communist country, where you're summarily executed in a football stadium for posting anti-government blogs.

    All the Chinese billionaires are key Communist Party members, and the small middle class are family and friends.

    As Mao famously said: "Let some get rich first."

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    Quote Originally Posted by BadBeta View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by lazlo
    Agree completely about driving innovation as a way of offsetting China's ability to cheaply manufacture simple components. If China starts developing their own Apple iPads or Nokia smart phones, the hole will get much deeper.
    I'm not really sure they care that much about innovation. The Apple iPads and lots of other innovative products end up getting made in China anyway.

    I think innovation as an offset is overrated. It works for the shareholders or owners, in the sense that money comes back from intellectual rights, but as as job creation goes it just keep a few designers and engineers going.
    But that gets back to my earlier comment: China gets the shitty unskilled piecework that no one in the West wants to do. Put another way: Apple posted over $100 Billion in profits in 2011. How much do you think Foxconn (which is a Taiwanese company, by the way), made assembling the iPhones with teenage Chinese peasants?

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    Quote Originally Posted by BadBeta View Post
    I'm not really sure they care that much about innovation. The Apple iPads and lots of other innovative products end up getting made in China anyway. And they do offer western technology companies quite a package to go there - compared that to here where manufacture seems to be some kind of dirty word as far as public policies and politics go.
    Can't say as how I diagree with what you write.

    The problems starts when the Chinese are thought to be only good at copying. I personally know for fact they can be very innovative when given the chance.

    When I have an idea for something new I want made and send drawings to China then I've always been given a suggestion as to how to make it even better. Surely I can't be the only one?

    IMO it's suicide to dismiss China as only being able to copy. Japan had the same reputation back in the 60ties and 70ties and were thought to be only good at copying but virtually every product they touched became better and more reliable. I doubt very much if anyone today regards Japan as only being good at copying.

    Within reason there isn't much that can't be made by anyone in almost every country. It's only a question if you are willing to pay the price or not.

    I wonder how many go to Asia because off the relatively low wages and then join the choir of those lamenting the low wages of the people in these countries. Hypocrisy pure and simple.
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    Quote Originally Posted by lazlo View Post
    That's probably a good analogy -- the Cold War. Now we have a economic war, where China is systematically extinguishing all competing industries through aggressive government sponsorship -- "subsidizing". In the next five years, the West won't be able to make an electric drill, let alone bridge segments or nuclear pressure vessels or oil pipe.

    "It's not about the Chinese citizens. It's a communist country. They're exploiting their peasants to dominate the world's economy. Has nothing to do with bigotry or racism. Most of the other Asian nations are successful Democracies with strong economies: Japan, Taiwan, Korea..."

    Have you ever been in a Chinese factory? You write about "teenage Chinese peasants" and then in another post quoted above sudddenly Taiwan is an Asian democracy.

    But that gets back to my earlier comment: China gets the shitty unskilled piecework that no one in the West wants to do. Put another way: Apple posted over $100 Billion in profits in 2011. How much do you think Foxconn (which is a Taiwanese company, by the way), made assembling the iPhones with teenage Chinese peasants?

    Oh, the US is far from good. As you implied earlier, our financial geniuses caused the world-wide recession in 2008. But I disagree with the claim that "China is changing". China is still an utterly corrupt, despotic communist country, where you're summarily executed in a football stadium for posting anti-government blogs. Care to give more information on that claim?

    All the Chinese billionaires are key Communist Party members, and the small middle class are family and friends.

    And you know this to be a fact how?

    As Mao famously said: "Let some get rich first."
    The true power in China lies with the military - not communist party members.

    Is what you write first hand knowledge or from what you read?

    The president of the USA is commander in chief of the armed forces. Does the president of China have the same power?

    Seriously, have you been to China and if so when and where?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Gordon B. Clarke View Post
    The true power in China lies with the military - not communist party members.
    Um, no! China is run by the Communist politburo. More specifically, 4 members of the "Standing Committee." The "Paramount Leader", Hu Jintao, is the leader of the Standing Committee. He runs China -- he's the General Secretary of the Communist Party and of the Central Committee, President of the People's Republic of China, and Chairman of the Central Military Commission.

    The president of the USA is commander in chief of the armed forces. Does the president of China have the same power?
    See above. The position of "President" in China is ceremonial. China is run by the politburo, and the Paramount Leader is always rubber-stamp "elected" by the politburo as "President." It has no similarity with a Democratic President.

    Seriously, have you been to China and if so when and where?
    No, do I need to? If you visit the US, will you have any more insight into our political system and economic woes than you would reading the Economist?

    Capital punishment in China

    How many executions does China carry out each year?

    Almost three times as many as the rest of the world put together

    How are executions carried out?

    There are two possibilities. China is in the process of shifting from death by firing squad to lethal injection. The former can be messy and public affairs. Convicts are taken into a field where crowds watch as they are shot in the back of the head by rifle at short range.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Gordon B. Clarke View Post
    You write about "teenage Chinese peasants"
    Uh, what?? In another thread uou asked me about the teenage peasants at the Foxconn factory, and I posted pictures of the kids, and linked to the article about the wave of suicides. The average age at the Foxconn plant is 19.

    Then in another post quoted above sudddenly Taiwan is an Asian democracy.
    Um, Gordon -- Taiwan is a Democracy. I was pointing out that China reaps almost none of the profit involved in the manufacture of Apple's products. The overwhelming majority of the profit goes to Apple, and a small slice goes to Foxconn, a Taiwanese company who gladly exploits mainland Chinese peasant labor.

    All China is getting out of the manufacture of iPhones is the $200/month the teenagers get for working 12 hour days, 7 days a week. They can have those jobs if you ask me...

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    Quote Originally Posted by lazlo View Post
    Um, no! China is run by the Communist politburo. More specifically, 4 members of the "Standing Committee." The "Paramount Leader", Hu Jintao, is the leader of the Standing Committee. He runs China -- he's the General Secretary of the Communist Party and of the Central Committee, President of the People's Republic of China, and Chairman of the Central Military Commission.

    See above. The position of "President" in China is ceremonial. China is run by the politburo, and the Paramount Leader is always rubber-stamp "elected" by the politburo as "President." It has no similarity with a Democratic President.

    No, do I need to? If you visit the US, will you have any more insight into our political system and economic woes than you would reading the Economist?

    Capital punishment in China

    How many executions does China carry out each year?

    Almost three times as many as the rest of the world put together

    How are executions carried out?

    There are two possibilities. China is in the process of shifting from death by firing squad to lethal injection. The former can be messy and public affairs. Convicts are taken into a field where crowds watch as they are shot in the back of the head by rifle at short range.
    Who's feeding you this information - Sarah Palin?????????????

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    Quote Originally Posted by Gordon B. Clarke View Post
    Who's feeding you this information - Sarah Palin?????????????
    Uh, so what's the rule set here, Gordon, only evil rightwing fascists talk about Chinese execution statistics/methods, but good, European socialists don't mention such things because it is important to convey a positive image of China?

    Or, on the other hand, is the rule that information about Chinese executions is false and conservative American politicians spread false information?

    Just trying to figure out your ideological play book here. I find with Europeans that is a complex endeavor, except in the case of Anders Breivik who was thoughtful enough to provide a 600-page PDF carefully explaining his ideology.

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    Quote Originally Posted by jscpm View Post
    Uh, so what's the rule set here, Gordon, only evil rightwing fascists talk about Chinese execution statistics/methods, but good, European socialists don't mention such things because it is important to convey a positive image of China?

    Or, on the other hand, is the rule that information about Chinese executions is false and conservative American politicians spread false information?

    That's news. Is it only conservative American politicians that have these views on China? I would wonder why they're even interested in China.

    Just trying to figure out your ideological play book here. I find with Europeans that is a complex endeavor, except in the case of Anders Breivik who was thoughtful enough to provide a 600-page PDF carefully explaining his ideology.
    If there are rules then I don't know them I believe that what's going on in here is what I'd call a discussion.

    What I am mainly objecting to is the fact that China seems by some to be the only country singled out in "hate speeches". This is a country the size of Canada, a population of almost 1,500 million, umpteen ethinic groups, several languages and, until recently, one of the poorest countries in the world.

    I could point a finger at many other countries that had more serious issues than China.

    Using Breivik as an example makes a sensible discussion futile as every country has its share of mentally deranged nutters. Some countries seem to be run by Breivik clones!

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    Quote Originally Posted by lazlo View Post
    But that gets back to my earlier comment: China gets the shitty unskilled piecework that no one in the West wants to do. Put another way: Apple posted over $100 Billion in profits in 2011. How much do you think Foxconn (which is a Taiwanese company, by the way), made assembling the iPhones with teenage Chinese peasants?
    Yes, a lot of it is unskilled work that no one in the west wants to do. But the west isn't even really trying. One can make simple things with simple technology, or one could possibly make simple things cost effective with advanced technology? Who knows - the western policy to shy away from manufacturing have made that into a question of what could have been? (That said there is advanced manufacturing in China as well). Another issue entirely is that the manufacturing skills in the western world is dwindling, and at some point China will have a competence advantage.

    Apple made a lot of profits, so like I said, great for the shareholders and the engineers and designer employed to make develop it. However, the shareholders can be from anywhere, even China. And considering the work created I'm not sure Apple is more beneficial for the US than say China overall? Besides, China can simply buy the innovative companies or shares in them if they want innovation - like everyone else. Being so freely traded innovation is great for the owners of companies, but I'm on the fence on it as a major advantage for a society overall. That's all.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Gordon B. Clarke View Post
    Can't say as how I diagree with what you write.

    The problems starts when the Chinese are thought to be only good at copying. I personally know for fact they can be very innovative when given the chance.
    What I look at is the distinct difference in the prioritized areas in the West and China. Based on some economical theories the west prioritizes development, innovation and financial creativities. Fair enough, but not when the rest of the picture is being forgotten or downright abandoned.

    China believes and works from other theories it seems, and choses to prioritize more basic activities and down to earth economy. And lets face it, they do have a lot of unskilled labor and that is unlikely to change overnight. Thus I personally think the chinese leaders to a fairly good job from a overall Chinese society viewpoint. (That is not to say I condone or agree with everything).

    One of the most striking examples of different theories are actually how Norway and China regard natural resources. Norway pumps up oil and gas way beyond the need to achieve economical balance, and then invest that surplus abroad in things like shares, bonds and real estate. China on the other hand do the opposite; they take their money and buy natural resources all around the world. Almost opposite approaches, and I'm not sure we have the right one.

    Quote Originally Posted by Gordon B. Clarke View Post
    When I have an idea for something new I want made and send drawings to China then I've always been given a suggestion as to how to make it even better. Surely I can't be the only one?
    My experience is that they will pretty much do exactly what you want. If you do get suggestions it will only be through their head honcho. (My cents) But of course the Chinese are innovative, they just have a culture where that is relatively less important.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Gordon B. Clarke View Post
    What I am mainly objecting to is the fact that China seems by some to be the only country singled out in "hate speeches".
    You think? China tries really hard to portray itself as this happy, up-and-coming capitalist society with a growing number of billionaires and a thriving middle class. But it's a farce: China is still a brutal communist society. All the billionaires are high-ranking communist party members. There are 800 million peasants living in squalor out of population of 1.4 billion, and the number of peasants is growing...

    Column: Why we need not envy China

    I could point a finger at many other countries that had more serious issues than China.
    Really? Like who? Is there any other country that's systematically wiping-out the manufacturing base of all the first-world countries through trade dumping and government "subsidies"?

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    Quote Originally Posted by BadBeta View Post
    the western policy to shy away from manufacturing have made that into a question of what could have been? (That said there is advanced manufacturing in China as well). Another issue entirely is that the manufacturing skills in the western world is dwindling, and at some point China will have a competence advantage.
    I see the causality differently. Look at Starrett, Bosch and Metabo, for example. They absolutely, positively don't want to outsource. Their brand value is based on superb quality.

    But when all their competitors have outsourced to China, what choice do they have? Will consumers pay 3 times as much for a Swiss-made Bosch drill or a German-made Metabo angle grinder over a Milwaukee that was made in China?

    IMHO, that's the crisis the West is facing right now. When China has sucked the last of the manufacturing capability to the mainland, we're all going to be in a world of hurt.
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