Freesteel Blog » Ridiculous anti-Chinese propaganda from the BBC

Ridiculous anti-Chinese propaganda from the BBC

Wednesday, October 30th, 2019 at 6:44 pm Written by:

The BBC completed its China: A New World Order series with an exercise in political propaganda so ham-fisted that it rivaled the Chinese State TV on a bad day.

Remarkably, it asked the audience to be sympathetic to the greed of multi-billion dollar gene patenting US agri-corporations, and against the availability of cheap and plentiful solar panels.

So, after ten minutes of Chinese dictator footage, we get served the appetizer.

The Chinese seed company employee Mo Hailong was caught by the FBI driving across Iowa and stealing samples of inbred corn seed out of the ground and shipping them back to China.

If his actions made any difference, then production of food in China might have increased fractionally, resulting in less hunger and famine, and so on. How awful.

I mean, what’s the alternative? The Chinese couldn’t develop and sell these seeds back into America because they are covered by patents, which are a government enforced monopolies that applies regardless of where the stuff is made. Alternatively, if the multi-billion dollar agri company was going to make its money selling seed into China, then they wouldn’t need to dig it out of the ground in Iowa to get access to it, will they? Maybe, if it came to anything, it was only going to have the effect of one Chinese seed company stealing an advantage over another Chinese seed company in China.

The story is eight years old, which is long enough ago for the outcome to have been determined. Did the stealing of these seeds have any effect on anything, because if it didn’t then why is the BBC wasting our time leading us to believe that untold damages from terrible crimes have been committed?

But now we move on to the main meal at minute 13: the terrible nightmare of how we got cheap and plentiful solar panels, which we need.

Milan Nitzschke (VP Solar World): (touring his a room full of idle manufacturing machinery) So this is the model factory of Solar World. It’s still the most advanced solar manufacturing plant in Europe and in the western world. And the reason why it is not producing is because the company Solar World went bankrupt.

Funny how the bankruptcy receivers haven’t had time to strip out and sell any of the valuable robots and CNC machines to other companies where they could be pressed into production.

Narrator: When Milan Nitzschke joined Solar World it was flourishing.
Nitzschke: We had at that time a real boom for renewable energies… Solar World was one of the pioneers of the solar industry and, at the end, it was the largest manufacturer in the western world.
Narrator: But Solar World had a problem. The Chinese government wanted China to lead the world in solar technology, so it poured billions of dollars into the industry in what Solar World said were illegal subsidies.
Nitzschke: So in only five years they built up a capacity double as big as the whole global demand, so they could have supplied the whole global solar demand two times only from China.

There is no such thing as a fixed global demand, unless prices to stay the same. As prices fall, demand increases. Right?

Nitzschke: We understood that we would all vanish from the market if we would not act against that unfair competition. What China did was illegal from the beginning.
Narrator: Solar World launched legal action against the Chinese government in Europe an the United States. But within months Solar World had another problem.
Nitzschke: Some FBI officers came to our office in Oregon and told us that our company has been hacked. The hackers took all the information about the ongoing anti-dumping legal case, and all of our documents relating to the technology.

Okay, lets do a timeline:

    2011 Q1: Spot price of solar was Euro1.29 per Watt

    2011 Q4: Solar World takes its case to the European Commission demanding a minimum import price from China of Euro0.80 per Watt.

    2011 Q4: Spot price of solar was Euro0.74 per Watt

    2012 Q4: Spot price of solar was Euro0.48 per Watt (values lifted from this graph)

    2013: EU and China settled the case by imposing a minimum import prices of Euro0.56 per Watt.

    2014 Q2: The US indicts five Chinese agents for hacks into Solar World’s computers in 2012.

    2017: Solar World AG declares insolvency citing ongoing price erosion and over indebtedness and is bought out by Solar World Industries GmbH. (obviously a technique to shed the debts).

    2018 Q1: SolarWorld Industries GmbH declares insolvency citing EU Commission’s intention to terminate its import restrictions

    2018 Q3: The EU ends MIP against the Chinese so that the whole of Europe could benefit from cheap solar panels.

    2019: The pv magazine price index reports 25cents per Watt.

Now, this looks like a story of a manufacturer that could not keep up with the tech. Had SolarWorld behaved like a normal company in the last 20 years and made money by sacking all its workers while relocating production to China, I don’t think the BBC would have made this into a story — even though the outcome would be the same.

Instead, this manufacturing business decided to buck the trend and demand import tariffs so that prices of solar tech would remain high to the detriment of everyone in the EU except themselves.

Alternatively, they could have asked for a subsidy. However, that budget for subsidies had already been blown on bailing out our bankrupt banks, which is far more important. It’s their political priorities.

Fortunately, the EU Commissioners didn’t give SolarWorld everything they wanted. While no one really knows exactly how to increase the development of tech, we do know how to stop its development, and that’s by high import tariffs that allow the domestic industry to carry on making money without making anything better.

But back to the BBC’s story, which is about to jump the shark.

Narrator: John Carlin had first seen the extent of Chinese cyber espionage at the FBI seven years before (about 2007). A giant screen displaying cyber intrusions across the United States.

John Carlin: I watched in realtime as state actors would hop into places like universities. They go from universities into business. And then you watch billions and billions of dollars, trade secrets, trade negotiation strategies, pour out of the United States. It’s what the former director of the NSA called “The largest transfer of wealth in human history”.

That inflammatory phrase, used in the blurb for the BBC program, was spoken by General Keith Alexander at the rightwing American Enterprise Institute in 2012.

I cannot think of a more trustworthy source than a General in charge of the NSA. But seriously, why aren’t you using that amazing technology that displays all the cyber intrusions in real-time to block them in real-time? Or are you painting a fantasy picture designed to get us worked up about all this theft of valuable intellectual property from the rightful corporate owners before they had a chance to sell it abroad for cash?

We get introduced to the China-US summit where Obama attempted to do a deal with the Chinese president to stop the hacking. Unfortunately the Snowden story about the massive hacking program run by the NSA broke the same day, which made him look a bit silly.

The program moves on. At minute 30 we have an interview with the former Chancellor of the exchequer explaining his more friendly approach to China than the Americans.

George Osborne: China was clearly going to be the great source of growth in the global economy. It contributes around 30% of all global growth in our economy going forward. And we want a part of that.

Who’s this “We”? Your investor friends, or the general public?

Remember, his government is famous for blocking anti-dumping EU steel tariffs to curry favour with the Chinese government in 2016. It had the side-effect of bankrupting all steel production in the UK.

The story goes on to accuse the Chinese government sending secret army agent to Manchester University posing as a PhD student where he made some breakthroughs on graphene technology.

This was getting silly. What difference does it make? The story here is that the Chinese government is willing to pay for students to attent UK universities, while the UK government is not.

It’s probably because there’s no point in making a career in tech in the UK, because we know the jobs are going to be stripped out and sent away. Might as well go into banking, because that’s the only industry the government seems to want to keep going.

I skipped to the end, and the summing up of the program.

Narrator: President Xi’s focus on the technologies of the future and China’s long campaign of stealing business secrets appear to be paying off. China is now challenging the technological superiority of the West.

American: They understand that the future of our economic growth is technology, and they have dedicated their time and resources to doing something we don’t: putting their centralized government money behind their front feeders.

We then have a few more dictator shots, and then we’re done. The credits do not disclose who wrote this piece of tripe, but it was commissioned by Joanna Carr.

So what’s the conclusion?

For sure, our civilization needs this tech to transition from a fossil fuel economy to one that is consistent with survival. If the governments in the West are too busy deploying their resources to save bankers to do anything about the production of this tech, then as far as I’m concerned the Chinese can’t “steal” it fast enough if they’re going to actually do something with it.

In reality, trade tariffs, international cooperation and the development of tech has a long an interesting history completely at odds with this ridiculous tale of stuff being invented in the creative West and being stolen and made cheaply by those devious copy-cat Chinese.

I mean, what’s the plan? Maybe the Chinese are supposed to pay to come to our universities, invent stuff here, and we’ll patent those inventions, and they’ll pay royalties back to our investment fund managers who can get on with leading the good life.

Or maybe we ought to start sending our economic students over to China so they can learn about how to actually foster the development of technology, instead of peddling this nonsense about how the West is the best, if it wasn’t for these thieving foreigners and their unfair investment in engineers with the resources to pursue the production of this tech.

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