COVID19 and boycotting Chinese made

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thrifty++
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COVID19 and boycotting Chinese made

Post by thrifty++ »

I have become extremely concerned with China after everything that has happened lately with China causing the pandemic, stuffing the global economy and all the associated corruption. Lying to the world about the extent of the virus, allowing it to spread throughout the world from China, lying to the WHO, propaganda about China "donating" equipment to other countries. Having its journalists reporting the real news go missing. Profiting off the pandemic China caused by selling (rather than giving) equipment to other countries. Lying about "donating" equipment to places like Italy when actually selling it to Italy and when it was actually equipment that had only just recently actually given for free to China by Italy itself. State controlled media and lying about everything going on in China. Selling faulty medical equipment around the world. The latest is that ventilators sold to the UK from China are so faulty they are killing people.

All of this has made me doggedly determined to absolutely avoid buying anything made in China. As I have been doing this though I have been shocked at the extent to which this is difficult. I recently had to buy a particular item. So I spent a long time searching for something not made in China. After hours I found one company that was NZ brand. I was really excited at getting something from NZ. It looked high spec and cost about 5 times the price of all the other stuff that was made in China. And then I discovered that it was only designed and engineered in NZ but outsourced the manufacturing to China. I was totally gutted. Selling at NZ prices under NZ brand with Chinese made products. It seems very difficult to buy this particular item not made in China. So I am going to go without or buy second hand.

But this has made me think how entrenched the problem is. Globalisation has allowed a select percentage of business people to get rich from outsourcing production to China at the expense of local economies. This has in turn allowed China to get rich quickly, basically through being gifted production by the rest of the world. All of this causes several problems:

- declining production around the world outside of China;
- detrimentally affecting local economies and creating greater inequality between the outsourcers and everyone else;
- it restricts product development. Although design and engineering are taking place in the west production is happening in China and there will be opportunities being lost;
- it means a lot more inferior low quality products are being used and consumed;
- there is a lot more environmental damage from overproduction of cheap goods and resulting landfills and trash being generated;
- its creating large wealth for a corrupt communist country.


Im not sure how this problem can be corrected as its become so far entrenched. I think the only thing that would reverse it is a heavy society driven consumption change where global consumers start paying attention to where products are made as I think people have been heavily complacent. It could be legislated. But I think it would be better driven by changes in what constitutes acceptable standards in consumer and producer behaviour.
Last edited by thrifty++ on Mon May 18, 2020 2:54 pm, edited 2 times in total.

bigato
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Re: COVID19 and boycotting Chinese made

Post by bigato »

And here I was hoping that people would consider going vegan to avoid similar problems in the future. Several other problems came from messing with the animal kindgon too closely after all, and this case from China is only one more example.
And I don't think you can ever boycott them unless you give up computers, smartphones and internet altogether.
But a movement towards more local production would be great.
While I disagree that China is the problem, I like your approach to protesting though. Voting with your money as it were. It's the vegan approach too. I like it.

7Wannabe5
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Re: COVID19 and boycotting Chinese made

Post by 7Wannabe5 »

We should probably think about boycotting Australian made too due to Hendra virus. All those filthy horse people.

thrifty++
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Re: COVID19 and boycotting Chinese made

Post by thrifty++ »

bigato wrote:
Sat May 02, 2020 7:10 pm
And here I was hoping that people would consider going vegan to avoid similar problems in the future. Several other problems came from messing with the animal kindgon too closely after all, and this case from China is only one more example.
And I don't think you can ever boycott them unless you give up computers, smartphones and internet altogether.
But a movement towards more local production would be great.
While I disagree that China is the problem, I like your approach to protesting though. Voting with your money as it were. It's the vegan approach too. I like it.
Its definitely the case for going more towards veganism for sure too. Well not veganism totally, but significantly reduced animal based foods. And also really strict animal food hygiene protocols. Im not convinced total veganism is good for your health. But I have shifted towards a low meat diet, and only chicken or seafood a couple of times a week. I eat eggs sometimes once a week or so. I find cow milk disgusting and easily replaceable so I don't consume it. But in terms of total veganism, im not sure that is right for health. In terms of getting all the right nutrients without artificial substitutes.

Surely there are some computer products manufacturer outside of China? If not then it seems there is a market to be filled.

George the original one
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Re: COVID19 and boycotting Chinese made

Post by George the original one »

thrifty++ wrote:
Sat May 02, 2020 7:34 pm
Surely there are some computer products manufacturer outside of China? If not then it seems there is a market to be filled.
Taiwan, South Korea, Japan, & Vietnam. But they have a lot of supply chains that likely lead you right back to China. Global is global, you know?

thrifty++
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Re: COVID19 and boycotting Chinese made

Post by thrifty++ »

@GTOO - that's a bummer. But, I think with all of this corona stuff there is going to be a significant re-visiting and changing of global supply chains. China will be seen as an increasingly risky market.
Last edited by thrifty++ on Mon May 18, 2020 2:59 pm, edited 1 time in total.

nomadscientist
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Re: COVID19 and boycotting Chinese made

Post by nomadscientist »

I wrote a long post but decided it wasnt helpful. Basically, I think the West brought this on itself. Please continue discussing how to boycott China.
Last edited by nomadscientist on Sun May 03, 2020 12:37 am, edited 1 time in total.

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fiby41
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Re: COVID19 and boycotting Chinese made

Post by fiby41 »

Our biggest in flow of foreign exchange is from remittances (gulf countries, then American countries, and so on) while single biggest outflow goes to China. If we ban or boycott Chinese goods we will have to step up domestic production. Much of the heavy industrial production had to be shut down after economic liberalisation of 1993. Stepping up domestic production is a way to create enough jobs to bring enough people out of poverty without deficit spending.

thrifty++
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Re: COVID19 and boycotting Chinese made

Post by thrifty++ »

nomadscientist wrote:
Sat May 02, 2020 11:37 pm
I wrote a long post but decided it wasnt helpful. Basically, I think the West brought this on itself. Please continue discussing how to boycott China.
I don't agree that the west brought the situation of the virus upon itself. That's tantamount to victim blaming.

horsewoman
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Re: COVID19 and boycotting Chinese made

Post by horsewoman »

+1 @nomadscientist. It should be kind of obvious how the business practices of Western countries have contributed to this whole mess.

chenda
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Re: COVID19 and boycotting Chinese made

Post by chenda »

China is New Zealand’s single-biggest export market, accounting for around one in every five dollars of sales of goods and services overseas, according to data first released by Stats NZ in December 2018...New Zealand’s exports of all goods and services to China were worth $16.6 billion for the year ended September 2018, $2.6 billion more than Australia and almost double the sales to the United States.
https://www.stats.govt.nz/news/new-zeal ... ted-states

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Re: COVID19 and boycotting Chinese made

Post by jacob »

A zoonotic epidemic is a confluence of multiple factors. People will typically assign blame to the factor that requires the minimum change of themselves. Politicians will likewise try to shift blame in a way that supports their ideology or covers their own mistakes. To me it's a bit like an alcoholic blaming his damaged liver for getting drunk though. It's all connected.

Here's a list of guilty factors from a previous post. Everybody have fun picking the one furthest away from you and pretend you didn't play any part in this epidemic or the next one whatsoever :-P
jacob wrote:
Wed Mar 18, 2020 3:06 pm
  • Encroaching on nature - humans cutting down forests to build housing in "natural surroundings".
  • Non-necessary air travel - tourists and business people flitting around the world allowing for rapid transmission .
  • Individualism and free public movement - why the west is in deeper shit than China/the east is and was.
  • Having babies and growing our population - the enormous and still growing biomass of humans constitute about 30% of all vertebrate biomass now... an enormous food source for vira and bacteria. It's very easy to infect other humans when they're nearby.
  • Wet markets - mixing nature with other nature (e.g. bats and ducks) and humans in pursuit of culinary experiences.
  • Eating meat - domesticated animals make up an astounding 60%+ of vertebrate biomass... an even greater bacterial and viral food source and part of the reason we use so much antibiotics (most go to livestock), developing superbugs in the process.
I'm all in favor of voting with one's money. My personal spending ceiling is essential a vote for not exceeding carrying capacity and generational equity. I also happen to think globalization (not all of it) is a good idea, but if you don't or don't like a particular country, then boycotting its products makes for an interesting quest.

Like everything else, there are Wheaton levels to this. The starting point should just be to avoid to "Made in X" label. This might be challenging enough. The next level would be chasing down supply chains. "Made in X" often only means "Assembled in X with Parts from Y,Z,...". For example, it's practically impossible to find a car that's 100% made in the USA. An interesting way around this would be to "buy local" from small manufacturers and ask where they source their materials from. For example, if I buy a saw from Home Depot, it's probably from China---or maybe the blade is from China and the handle is from Mexico. If it buy it from a blacksmith on the internet, he likely made it himself. I pay $250 instead of $25, but I also get a nicer saw. It's possible to do the same with food. Some farmers will even tell you the name of the chicken you're eating.

RealPerson
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Re: COVID19 and boycotting Chinese made

Post by RealPerson »

+1 on zoonosis infections being primarily caused by the never ending human encroachment on the remaining wild areas of the world. This is the result of overpopulation. Diseases have been transmitted by eating bush meat, which is a necessary source of protein in parts of Africa. That is probably how we got HIV. Wet markets are also a risk.
There have been zoonosis outbreaks in developed countries, for example in Australia and in the Netherlands. Huge numbers of viruses live in the wild animal world, many of them in bats. Viruses jumping to humans will happen from time to time. In China and elsewhere.

The length of the supply lines from China is a different issue. We are very exposed when so much of our stuff comes from far away. There can be interruptions in production or supply when a country such a China stops exports of a vital material because they need it themselves. Relying entirely on exports from a potential adversary is a huge liability. Hopefully our governments and large corporations learn from this. We need to decide if it is worth the exposure and fragility in supply of essentials like pharmaceuticals and PPE. You can try to boycott Chinese made products, with limited effectiveness. I boycott Chinese food products because of the disregard for the environment and food safety. My motive is my health. I also avoid eating industrial meat, because that business is a recipe for disease. And it is cruel at an unimaginable level.

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Sclass
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Re: COVID19 and boycotting Chinese made

Post by Sclass »

Yeah this is a tough one. You may end up just hurting yourself, or at least putting yourself behind. I second @RealPerson, I don’t eat food products from China. I’ve also avoided China counterfeit respirator filters this week while ordering replacement cartridges for my PPE. I passed on some Chinese high pressure hose and fittings for my car. I don’t like hoses that go bang under pressure.

But I did buy a fabulous pc assembled by Foxconn. I’m typing on an awesome iPad made by Foxconn. I crimped my American made high pressure hose using a counterfeit crimping tool made in China. I 3d printed some adapters to use 3M P100 respirator masks with HONEYWELL P100 cartridges so I could use the available PPE that I had - with my $200 3d printer made by Creality Shenzhen It’s great and I’m way ahead because of these choices.

I look at this thing like the boycott Walmart speak. Or don’t buy evil stocks. Amazon is looking pretty evil firing warehouse workers and I own their shares. I’d hate to be working in a San Bernardino Prime packing warehouse but thanks to AMZN I don’t have to. Crummy right?

So China. Yeah you can boycott them. I’m not stopping you. Pick your battles wisely.

@jacob the story is they didn’t sell bats at Huanan market. Now they could be lying. Chinese credibility is at an all time low. But bat eating is pretty rare among Chinese. And ducks? What’s so evil about ducks?

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Re: COVID19 and boycotting Chinese made

Post by Alphaville »

for a very long time i have avoided eating chinese products due to their environmental clusterfuck being a glaring health risk.

and then i bought apple juice online, and when it arrived it said: product of china :lol:

(i’m brewing it anyway, this once)

global trade is good when it’s predicated on a common ground of human and labor rights, environmental standards, transparency, honesty, etc. if not in perfect form, at least as a working goal.

it’s been blatantly evident now that china not only managed to skirt much of those standards, but also further entrenched communist party power, flaunting the notion that free markets and free people go together and that democracy would spread. sorry nixon, and everyone else who followed.

chinese progress has been good in other fronts though, like freeing their enormous population from recurrent famine, which used to be a humanitarian clusterfuck. i’m glad that millions of chinese citizens have joined the global middle class.

nevertheless, boycotting china is rather impossible at this point due to the complexity and interdependence of global supply chains. some parts of these supply chains have been diversifying outside of china, and the trend will continue. but some of those operations will still be china-owned. plus the fact that everyone’s economy depends on everyone these days. e.g, if china doesn’t buy american soybeans, american farmers go broke, etc. same thing with everybody else as illustrated by chenda’s post/link.

retrenching behind our own borders is impossible and counterproductive. some measure of self-reliance is strategically important, but complete isolationism is self-destructive. alliances and partnerships are essential, and leading through engagement is the only way forward.

and on that note, abandoning the trans-pacific partnership was a self-inflicted gunshot. now china has the most political, military and market power in the region, and their ability to bend smaller nations to their will continues to grow uncontested.

not that we didn’t do similar things in our day...
Last edited by Alphaville on Sun May 03, 2020 1:06 pm, edited 1 time in total.

nomadscientist
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Re: COVID19 and boycotting Chinese made

Post by nomadscientist »

thrifty++ wrote:
Sun May 03, 2020 2:31 am
I don't agree that the west brought the situation of the virus upon itself. That's tantamount to victim blaming.
Maybe it is, I have less interest shying away from social shaming as I get wealthier.

South Korea and Taiwan controlled the disease with less information than us and less warning. We knew what they were doing and by 28th February (when the US case number was 19) we also knew what the Chinese were doing (supposing we didn't before).

We made a choice not to use these measures primarily for ideological reasons and probably partly for PR reasons and then were forced to impose measures that were both more oppressive and less effective as events unfolded. We had other choices.

nomadscientist
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Re: COVID19 and boycotting Chinese made

Post by nomadscientist »

RealPerson wrote:
Sun May 03, 2020 9:16 am
+1 on zoonosis infections being primarily caused by the never ending human encroachment on the remaining wild areas of the world. This is the result of overpopulation.
It's not that simple. These diseases are not coming out of Europe, North America, or Tokyo city, i.e. the places most encroached and "overpopulated." That's partly because the animals are gone, partly because we have developed and enforced safe practices for handling them. The diseases are coming out of border zones where high density human populations meet pre-cultivated wilderness. It's the combination that is dangerous rather than one alone.

Low population density primitivism would actually increase the per captia rate of generation of zoonotic diseases but the vast majority of them wouldn't spread because people would spend much less time in close contact with lots of strangers. R_0 is lower for the same pathogen.

Conversely, complete development of the whole world to developed world levels would result in very low rate of generation of new diseases per capita, but then spread would (if uncontrolled by competent state action) be very rapid, as we are seeing.

In the next decades China is going to be a developed country barring some catastrophe, and its rate of generation of novel diseases will likely fall to the developed world average.

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fiby41
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Re: COVID19 and boycotting Chinese made

Post by fiby41 »

Sclass wrote:
Sun May 03, 2020 10:30 am
And ducks? What’s so evil about ducks?
Forum user sky shared a video in which it said some intestinal virus in ducks are harmless but when kept with other animals they skip host and have to become more virulent to do so. Earlier they were water borne but now they become air borne and more contagious and deadly.
Bats here that were checked for coronavirus had 0 oral swabs come positive but many rectal swabs did.

IlliniDave
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Re: COVID19 and boycotting Chinese made

Post by IlliniDave »

I don't know about actively boycotting China, or other punitive measures, but I think for larger nations (or regional groups of smaller nations) developing the ability to revert to self-reliance, at least on an occasional basis, is prudent. A pandemic virus is only one way supply lines could get choked or severed.

Jason
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Re: COVID19 and boycotting Chinese made

Post by Jason »

"Developed" is relative especially when a country is Communist. There are still many regions of China that remain stuck in some Emperor Of The Golden Baby With The Sunbeam Shooting Out of Its Asshole Age and will remain that way as long as the government won't run TI line into their villages. They just had riots in Hong Kong. Only one side had guns and everyone knows which side. You can make the argument that China would have preferred this to have happened 10 years from now because they would have been less effected, which OK, speaks to some interpretation of "Developed" but not one that benefits anyone outside China because that's like the former Soviet Union being able to nuke us with no fear of retaliation because we don't eat animals that thrive in caves. Or maybe we do. But that's besides the point. I can't imagine the population is happy not only with what happened here but the fact they have to put a finger to their mouth when talking about how they feel about things. Despite their gains, capitalism is better suited for democracies and the first thing people have to do is keep that in the front of their minds. This shit was not a Chinese event. It was a Communist event. We are in a Cold War that will be fought with tariffs but unless you're willing to avoid Walmart, throw out your IPHONE and remain sick as opposed to taking your medication, I don't see a personal boycott as feasible. Globalization is too entrenched to retreat and well, free trade has its benefits. Best bet is to work towards not only personal but US autonomy while realizing it will most likely remain an ideal.

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