The impact of China. Pigs ears and starving budgies?

Discussion in 'The Intelligence Cell' started by TheIronDuke, Jul 14, 2008.

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  1. TheIronDuke

    TheIronDuke LE Book Reviewer

    I watch the growing tiger economies with detached interest. Unlike the Vegetablists I don’t see slave labour as an issue. If some 10 year old kid is gluing trainers for 20p and hour, its 20p more than he would have earned under Mao.

    But China is beginning to have a direct effect on my life.

    Last week half a dozen manhole covers vanished from a lane near me. Hit that hole at 30mph and it would rip your suspension apart. China needs steel, so scrap prices have gone through the roof. A couple of years ago you had to pay a scrap yard to scrap a car. Now there’s adverts everywhere offering £80 a lump.

    Then on Saturday me Mum asked me to get some millet for her budgie and a pigs ear for me Aunties dog. Neither of which were available since China has stopped exporting them along with all ‘hide products’. Millet I can understand. You can eat it and make beer from it. Hide you can make shoes from. But what the hell are they doing with pig’s ears?

    What’s next as the Chinese move from a bowl of rice a day to the sort of consumerism we enjoy? They’re developing Western tastes. Beef burgers and dairy products. Fair enough. They can grow cows. But beer? More grain out of the world stocks and not good news for the price of a pint.
  2. I don't care about slave labour, am supremely indifferent to Taiwan, and don't give two pink sh1ts for Tibet. But if the rinky-dinks start interfering with my supply of ale, there'll be trouble!
  3. My lentil, fish and tomato soup yesterday required a visit to a half-wit's shop - sure enough, at the back of the shelf the lentil he hadn't sold in a year hadn't been repriced - half the normal price.

    Find a run-down pet shop and see what they have on the back of the shelf, and see if they've re-priced.
  4. seaweed

    seaweed LE Book Reviewer

    They are reprocessing the pig's ears into silk purses of course.

    Next stop, lovely crinkly crispy ducks' feet in MacDonalds.
  5. Dear, dear. Those horrid people. Imagine taking resources from countries other than their own! At market rates, as well! Simply beastly. Next they'll be painting maps to show how much of the world they dominate.
  6. TheIronDuke

    TheIronDuke LE Book Reviewer

    They can please themselves, but if they start on my Mums budgie there will be tears before bedtime. She does love that budgie. 1.3 billion of them dont stand a chance.

    And thats without my Auntie Binda and her pigs ears.
  7. I'm stocking up on Trill tomorrow morning
  8. Have I got this right,,
    Average chinese worker is prepared to pay more than Average british worker for petrol, meat, rice ect.
    I do not think so......
    Every day OPEC produce half a million more barrels of oil than are consumed, where is it going.
    Britian has a plague of "Travellers" collecting all the scrap iron we have, where is it going, Not China because they have more ore and coke than Britain ever had. may be India, but not for smelting, they dont have the coal to do it.
    So where is it all going...
  9. I think it's only a problem if you actually have a budgie.
  10. Read some history on China. Every X number of years it goes through yet another revolution .
    Now we have a Communist Country that is worlds biggest industrial manufacture in 'Consumer' goods.
    Billionaires are 'Two a Penny'.
    Just a matter of time before China rips it's self apart.
  11. People have been predicting that for X+1 number of years, it hasn't happened yet. The people in charge may change but 'China' goes on. The idea of the nation is one of the most durable concepts in human history. Thar's one of the main reasons why such a disparate group of separate cultures have held together all these thousands of years.

    Genuine question: what is it that you think is new this time round?
  12. My Bold. The idea of collective unity is the durable concept and not the idea of nation. The majority nations currently in existance have only been around for about 800 years. Prior to that it was a core of warriors imposing their will upon the majority, who simply swapped once tax xollector for another.

    The Chinese are not all the same - hence why the central government encourages internal movement of people to try and bind the nation together as regional differences are smoothed out.
  13. They are probably scoffing the pig's ears themselves.

    Joking aside, however you look at it, China's economy is growing fast and the country as a whole is seeing the benefits. Not equally across the board but nevertheless as a whole.

    As a result of this economic success especially in manufacturing they are on the prowl for natural resources.

    Now I don’t know if this true or not and maybe a subject for a different topic, but I did hear that they done a deal with the Iranians where they basically purchased so much oil at the then current price of around $35. I.E. Bought up future production at a given price.

    Could have all sorts of ramifications if things kick off there and the Chinese don’t get their oil…
  14. Fair enough, I was using the term 'nation' loosely. That's to a great extent a product of Western ideas of nationalism; ironically, if you'd asked a 17th Century european merchant where he was going, he'd have said 'China' without missing a heartbeat - his Chinese counterpart probably wouldn't have recognised the term.

    Yes there have been endless changes, reorganisations, fragmentations and reunifications, BUT the core idea of 'things are better if all of us stick together' at the heart of 'Chineseness' is what keeps the parts together; so much so that the majority of Han aren't in any genetic or anthropological sense related to the original people who took the name. They're mostly descendants of people who took to the idea after the fact and held to it despite countless opportunity to break away. That's why I take a rather jaundiced view of any claims that China is going to fragment any time soon. If events of the late Qing era couldn't break the people apart, I doubt discontent with one set of rulers will do it.

    Incidentally, 'encourages internal movement'? The modern system of Hukuo (Household Registration) was specifically introduced as a means of limiting internal movement. It's also just an extension of the Imperial system for registering tax and military service obligation, so not a new idea by any means. Some internal movement is encouraged, increasingly so now that manufacturing is starting to make up a significant proportion of GDP but it cuts both ways - into and out of minority areas. Believe it or not, it's easier for a Tibetan to get into Tsinghua or Peking Universities, or to get a government job than it is for a Han.
  15. TheIronDuke

    TheIronDuke LE Book Reviewer

    Purely the view from the punter in the street?

    Any muscle China had was flexed internally. Either in supression of dissent or protection of her borders. So far as I'm aware, China has never been expansionist? Its the Middle Kingdom and smelly feringhees can do one. Thats changed. Today their muscle is economic. The first real sign of flexing was when George Bush #1 told Taiwan he'd changed his mind about supplying Aegis warships. Because China said if he did, they would impose import sanactions. Which got Georges industrial-military backers straight on the phone. Same with Tibet. China can largely ignore Western pressure because we're all wearing their T shirts and shoes, using their tech kit.

    Today China is expanding. It is transforming bits of Africa with industrial muscle and know-how. And this isnt the Chinese diaspora. This is China based companies.