Saturday, June 25, 2005

Late Afternoon Silliness

Yesterday afternoon a radio host took on the Unocal/Red China question.

During the segment, he made a statement to the effect that '[Red] China is a vast market, which will be buying American-made goods, thus the US will be enriched by encouraging the Chinese...'

Really? The jingoistic conceits buried under the Pollyanna frosting in that thesis are striking.

The first presumption is that the Chinese will buy 'American-style' goods because, after all, everything in the USA is superior to anything in any other society.

Another presumption: that the Chinese will reverse their track record and stop stealing designs and manufacturing techniques from the US and the West in general.

A third presumption: that the Chinese dictators will allow the import of US goods in favor of home-grown goods.

The radio host's thesis is seriously flawed; we were reminded of that by another newsletter which arrived this morning. While the newsletter made the point that the British Empire was different from the Roman Empire in a lot of ways, even the newsletter missed the larger point.

China's foundational culture is, simply, totally different from that of the US, or England, or the Hapsburgs, or the Spaniards. The West is Judaeo-Christian. China is not.

The gross, egregious, and fatal conceit is that 'China wants to be like the US.' Why would they?

It so happens that my #3 offspring was on the phone with the PM host when this host's fatuous point was made--or I might not have paid attention. (For you longsuffering parents--my kid was on the RIGHT side...they do 'get it' after a while.)

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