China has truly arrived on the global stage. Actually China arrived on the economic stage, on the geopolitical stage over 15 years ago. In fact, the story of this century so far has been China. But that was a distant, glorified China. No one in America really felt China from near until recently. And now, you can’t avoid hearing about China & not in a good way.
In retrospect, the peak of China was the Obama presidency. Remember how the Chinese forbade President Obama from exiting his Airforce One from the main ladder at Beijing airport. He ended up getting off Airforce One from the back, am undignified surrender to China’s new might.
China’s fortunes began changing with the election of President Trump who simply asked – how can China be great when their greatness depends on taking away $500 billion every year from America & on stealing American technology? Not only was he content on asking the question, but he set abut fixing the problem.
Look what happened this Friday. In a tacit admission of their critical weakness, China agreed to a phase I trade & intellectual property deal with America, something China has not done with any body else. They did it because the Chinese economy would NOT be able to handle the increased tariffs that were scheduled to go into effect next week AND because China is desperate to feed its people pork & other meats they like.
Yes, the mighty China of yesterday is now unable to feed its people & there is No One Else with the agricultural might to sell them food they need in the quantities they need. AND nothing gets timid, beaten down people to riot & spread anarchy as shortages of food. The Chinese leadership knows that about their own hundreds of millions of people in Chinese heartland.
And if they didn’t know it, they can watch what is going on in Hong Kong.
2. Hong Kong
What began as a movement to keep basic legal rights has now mushroomed into something else. Chinese leaders may understand Chinese mainland but it is clear they don’t understand Hong Kong and their intense attachment to their separate legal & social rights. So before Chinese leadership understood what was happening, a massive people’s movement sprung up.
It seemed like the early days of the Arab Spring & just like that spring, the Hong Kong movement has turned into quasi-anarchy. The question is whether Hong Kong can recover to once again become the financial center motivated by freedom to make money OR is it destined to become a has-been like Beirut of the Far East?
The Hong Kong majority once enthusiastically & emotionally backed the movement for retaining their rights. Now we feel the majority sees their beloved city & its unique ethos getting permanently destroyed by anarchists.
Chinese leaders can stop the anarchy & restore order anytime they decide. But that in itself is a step fraught with major consequences. China’s posture of global leadership will be set back for years & the loss of face would be immense. It would mean massive loss of wealth currently resident in Hong Kong & a permanent destruction of China’s financial window to the world. Look at the cities where the Arab Spring blossomed. Those cities lost all their panache & promise after a government crackdown. That could easily happen to Hong Kong.
The anarchists know that China will never allow Hong Kong to escape China & that is the reason for the anarchy – to force China’s hand into using the iron fist & boot. They know nothing is more important to China than keeping control of Hong Kong, nothing. But China is hoping that the majority gets fed up with the anarchy & begins treating Chinese authoritarian rule as the lesser evil. The stakes are high.
Into this stepped a stupid manager of NBA’s Houston Rockets. He tweeted support for the democracy movement of Hong Kong. That was like throwing a match in an inflammable heap. And he didn’t do it in the first week of protests when the movement was about basic legal rights. He did it after the movement had become an anarchist drive against the China itself. He thrust a major symbol of America in China against China’s Sovereign status & the Chinese people.
It is important to note that President Trump has intuitively & intellectually understood where America had to stay. Not even once did President Trump voice support for the protestors or tried to intervene verbally on their side. From day one he said Hong Kong is China’s problem & hoped it would be resolved amicably. He has been almost perfect and that is one big reason why China has not intervened forcefully in Hong Kong.
Speaking of freedom of speech, we recall & we would like everyone to recall what Sean Hannity had said in September 2001 that freedom of speech has consequences. Any one who remembers that America knows that America would not have tolerated any expression of sympathy for the cause of the 9/11 Al Qaida terrorists. That America was ready to go war against any one who supported or joined with those who did 9/11.
We do think the Chinese majority views the Hong Kong situation is a similar light. It is about an attack on the territorial integrity & sovereignty of China. And any one who transgresses that line has to be punished. We say this despite our view that the current Chinese system & the Chinese leadership are dangerous for the world. It might take a decade or two but China will NOT regain the stature & the power it had during the Obama Administration.
But a major power in decline is very dangerous. They are likely to hit out if they feel pressed. That is why we think President Trump has been smart in playing this situation. He has avoided the terrible mistake the Obama-Clinton team made in during the protests in Ukraine. We all know how Russia annexed Crimea & how US-Russia relations blew up. That made China the biggest beneficiary of that Russia-US fight. Neither we nor the world needs a repeat of that.
3. New Opium, NBA, China
Now we all know how critical China is for the NBA & the money it makes. No one kept their success by attacking a huge customer. And that is exactly the idiotic Houston Rockets manager did. It was sensible for the NBA Commissioner to immediately muzzle that manager and everyone affiliated with the NBA from saying anything. They realize more than any other how precarious is their situation in China.
Fortunately no foreign sport or entity in America has even a fraction of level of the presence of NBA in China. The only foreign entity with a minor reach in America is BBC & British shows in particular. But remember how fast & furious the reaction was in US Financial TV when the then London Mayor said that London was more important than New York. We still remember the scathing contempt expressed by Fox’s Maria Bartiromo (then at CNBC) about the London mayor’s claim.
So, from a business & a collective organizational good viewpoint, the NBA is doing the right thing. No one involved in a business should have the individual freedom to damage that business for personal beliefs.
What this shows is that the Chinese people remain as easily addicted to foreign influences as they used to be. As is well known, the biggest economy in the World (China) in the 19th century was destroyed by a much smaller British by making the Chinese addicted to opium. Those Chinese did not buy anything that Britain had to sell. Finally, the British began smuggling opium from British-run India into China. Soon, the Chinese people as a whole got addicted to opium & Britain began siphoning off massive amounts of money from China.
Once again, as we read, the Chinese are addicted to another foreign import – NBA Basketball. The Europeans like basketball too but Europe has its own teams. They take in some players from the NBA but the sport is played & run by Europeans. China is different, stupidly different. Instead of making a Chinese Basketball league strong & successful by taking a player or two from the NBA, the Chinese people have imported NBA wholesale & the NBA has gotten enormously rich from it.
But the NBA itself has changed as a result. It is no longer the NBA that was made great by Larry Bird & Magic Johnson & later by Michael Jordan. Today’s NBA is totally different with its virulent contempt for America & the opportunities America provides the NBA, its owners & the players. The NBA is far worse than the NFL & the stand the NFL owners took. That was about a single issue and a burning issue for many of the players. The NBA has no issue like that. Yet, the NBA, its leading coaches, its leading players have nothing but angry contempt for America & the American system.
4. NBA, Harvard, NYC & Sad Case Asian Americans
NBA’s contempt for Americans stems, we feel, from a built-in racism. Look at the NBA & try to find any other American entity that is as much a system of One Race, by One Race & For One Race. NBA teams are virtually 100% staffed by African players to the exclusion of other minorities. We have not seen a single Asian-American player in any NBA team.
Yet no one publicly talks about the total lack of Diversity in the NBA. Probably because African-American players are as a group far far better at Basketball than any other race in America. That, we believe, has led to an institutionalized racism within the NBA. The power within the league has shifted to players from the no-longer termed as owners & league officials. So this NBA is not even trying to bring in players from other races into the league.
But isn’t Diversity far more important than skill or merit? That was the argument used by New York City African-American politicians when they attacked the famous merit-based New York City schools. For those who don’t know, admission to these schools is based on a competitive exam that every aspiring student takes. As a result, Asian American students are admitted in far greater numbers than those from other minorities.
This was deemed as racist & anti-diversity. The panel appointed by Mayor DeBlasio predictably ruled so. In other words, when merit-based standards enable Asian Americans, they are racist. But when merit-based standards enable African Americans, they are NOT racist. Is there a more blatantly racist concept in America?
Then you have Harvard which now can legally discriminate against Asian Americans in admissions despite having a large number of Asian Americans on its faculty. You also have a national TV anchor like Melissa Lee of CNBC who continues to advocate Harvard while remaining totally silent about Harvard’s explicit & deliberate discrimination against Asian Americans. She discusses all types of topic on the CNBC shows she anchors but she has NOT even touched on any Asian American issue, not even Harvard’s case.
The problem Asian Americans have is the same problem the Kurds have. There are 35 million Kurds spread across Iran, Iraq and Syria. But they have never forged a common identity or even a common agenda. That is why Turkey can invade northern Syria to either throw out Syrian Kurds or rule over them without the Iraqi Kurds, Iranian Kurds coming to their help. Each Kurdish group looks separately to America for help for their local problems without even thinking of making common cause.
Asian Americans are beset by the same problem in America. They are too diverse with too many differences to make common cause. For example, as we recall, Scarlett Fu of Bloomberg Television said during the China-Japan dispute a few years ago that she had stopped buying Japanese cars. How do Korean-Americans & Japanese Americans react to each other these days? And yes, the favorite Asian American guest of Chris Mathews of MSNBC signaled on Twitter that she doesn’t consider Indian Americans as Asian Americans.
No wonder Asian Americans have no political voice or power in America. They remain as timid as ever & try to hide when the political heat gets too hot.
But things may be changing a bit. We saw an Asian American woman come on Laura Ingraham’s show on Fox to raise the question we raised above. She specifically addressed the “racism” label applied to the NYC merit-based system but not to NBA-NFL. Unfortunately this lady seems to be an isolated case on US TV AND Laura Ingraham remains the ONLY TV anchor who discusses such disparate treatment for Asian Americans in & by the Democrat party.
Shouldn’t CNBC’s Melissa Lee or Bloomberg’s Scarlett Fu learn & borrow some courage from Laura Ingraham? Yes, but we won’t hold our breath.
What about Indian American “on air talent” at CNBC & Bloomberg, you ask? Forget about them. They are the personification of spineless stupidity. Actually, the most “Indian” of CNBC anchors may well be Wilfred Frost, the smart & urbane all-English anchor!
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