Is it because you are a user of apple products and hope that you will continue to do so in the future because you are dependent on them?
Is it because you believe that apple is a good company and you hope for the best for them?
Why should we hope for the best for a company that has made hundreds of billions off of offshoring jobs to an authoritarian country with little regard for investing in manufacturing in America?
The way I see it is that if China decides to squeeze Apple by restricting their production it will be a fair comeuppance for a company that has seen fit to extract billions in wealth from developers through their app store and has sought to turn their commodity hardware into status symbols to extract even more wealth from middle class people who want to feel like they're more than middle class.
If the executives at Apple had any foresight and any interest beyond self interest they would have encouraged domestic production a decade or more ago. Instead we have a situation where people are crying for poor Apple, a company who that has more money than god and who could have used that to create their own supply chain domestically which would have had tremendous benefits for America and the American people.
Instead they have chose to consort and ultimately enable an authoritarian country into a situation where they now pose a legitimate threat both militarily and culturally to America, the albeit flawed but last best hope for freedom in the world.
Think different indeed.
I too have qualms with what is going on in China, but like everything that happens in this life, I’m flipping petrified of how much damage some reactionary american screed might do.
> I too have qualms with what is going on in China, but like everything that happens in this life, I’m flipping petrified of how much damage some reactionary american screed might do.
You make a moral statement about the activities of China, and then you say you're scared of the repercussions of taking any action.
You state "they absolutely have the money to run these capabilities in America." Apple's published margin on hardware is 30%, so if manufacturing in America increases costs by 30%, Apple no longer makes a profit selling hardware. If manufacturing increases costs by more than 30%, Apple starts losing money selling hardware.
Big numbers are big because Apple is selling many, many, many phones. That also means that adding to the cost of manufacturing by even a small amount per unit immediately chews up a lot of those outrageous profits.
Publicly held companies will rarely choose the good of the public over the good of their stockholders unless given fiscal incentives through tax increases or tax decreases.
Unless they become as wealthy as Bill Gates and make a non-profit with their enormous wealth.
Consumers have chosen their priorities, and they’re only able/willing to spend a little bit extra for a better product. They’re not going to spend that much more for more expensive labor too.
That is absurd. Consumers have absolutely no choice in the matter other than the most unpractical "avoid using modern electronics"
Apple could have simply raised their prices to account for differences in domestic manufacturing costs or swallowed the cost with decreased profit margins.
By moving from one communist dictatorship to another communist dictatorship.
This doesn’t make sense - App Store is a voluntary program no one is forced to develop apps for iPhone, or even android
The way to respond to bad comments or misinformation is patiently and with correct information, delivered respectfully. That's hard to do when provoked, I know, but if you can't or don't want to do it, it's probably better not to post. Lashing back doesn't help.
What does your nationality or your wife have to do with this? The Brits have an illustrious history of treating Chinese people well. Or all 'furriners' for that matter. But mocking Americans is much more fun than paying attention to any of that.
Not sure if you’re being sarcastic, but you might have forgotten about the Opium Wars where no sides treated each other well, the Brits included.
Do you actually have any real point to make about the substance of my comment?
Accusing someone of having no interest above self interest, simply because they employ people in another country, is utterly morally bankrupt. Discuss.
In my opinion, the real choice isn't between producing in China and producing in America. It is between China and countries like India or Brazil. If India is a democracy, has better labor laws than China, has more respect for free speech, then moving production to India is less likely to have negative externalities than China.
That's how it happened in the west, too, no? Textile mills? I'm not saying anything about morality but it sounds standard to me.
Apple, as other nominally American "multi-national" corporations, was and remains subject to government policy and plans.
Which institutions, centers of power, and influential individuals determined that the de-industrialization of United States was such a hot idea and pushed that to its extremes in the 90s?
Apple simply operated in the stated and promoted policy regime. They are not alone.
(Also cross your fingers regarding your "last hopes". Patriot Act. Secret courts. Permanent state of "national emergency" with attendant curtailment of our Natural Rights, "Surveillance Capitalism", ...)
It’s worth remembering that in the 90s, Francis Fukuyama was the hottest philosopher around and there was a general belief that economic liberalisation would inevitably lead a country towards Western style democracy and all that entailed. No one, certainly no one as prominent as Fukuyama ever predicted the opposite would in fact occur.
Not that this excuses Apple or anyone else. Once it became apparent they should have acted urgently. Because it meant that all their basic assumptions about how the world works need to be re-evaluated.
He has since renounced his 90s work, to be fair.
(No, this news is not "fit to print" in The New York Times.)
Even though there are kinks in their regime, for the most part they’ve lifted hundreds or millions out of poverty. Imagine if the U.S. had a massive foreign power prodding it during the early years of slavery, manifest destiny (the justification for eradicating the Native Americans), racism, drug war, Vietnam, and mass incarceration.
Yes, they have a big brother-style regime, but they are also capable of sorting out their own political issues. And if not, they’ll reap the consequences without you having to do it form them.
If you really believe in democracy, then trying to influence their politics from afar is ultimately going to be far-less democratic than they influencing their own politics. I understand they don't have directly elections or a multi-party system, but that does not mean there is not opinion sharing in policy decisions, or intra-party elections. In a representative form of government direct-elections are not really a thing anyways.
If you truly support democracy, the last thing you would do is to try to influence the policies of another people. That would be robbing them of their self-determinacy, even if it is to prevent them from robbing themselves of it.
>they’ve lifted hundreds or millions out of poverty
And they did, by first and foremost down to joining WTO.
Once this government starts ( and has already done so ) influence or force Rest of the world to cooperate or kowtowing to their own self interest, which fundamentally undermines everyone else basic value and principles, then it is no longer their own policy and issues.
And that is about as civilised as I can put it.
Yes because this is a Mainland issue. So only Mainland opinions are legitimate. They enact their policies with their best interests in mind, however misguided it may be because a foreigner can only enact policies with their own interests in mind, however well-guided they may be. A white person probably shouldn’t go into a black community to tell them how they should run things for their best interests.
The issue isn’t that they are doing something right or wrong—all governments will enact policies that are disagreeable... the US included (in the case of Edward Snowden). The issue is that to the Chinese they will never take the protests of foreigners seriously because foreigners will have their own interests in mind, not to mention are generally poorly educated about Chinese policy decisions in general.
Trying to influence policy from afar is simply a form of taxation without representation. A foreigner really should have no say in the policy decisions of afar because 1) they do not have to suffer the consequences of the policies, 2) they cannot understand the experiences leading to such policy decisions and 3) as a result of 1 and 2 they will always have their own interests in mind rather than those or their constituents. Imagine a product manager in the US trying to manage a product built by a team of engineers in China for the Chinese market. He’ll sure fail because he will have no grasp pf the product in practice being used over there, and for that reason anyone that detached from something should not be trying to exert influence for their own interests.
A poor inner city black family may have a whole different set of daily problems than a rich white suburban family. Imagine if the white family admonishes the black family because their kids are failing school or dealing drugs. In absolute terms dealing drugs is wrong, illegal, and failing school may be a sign of bad parenting, but in reality the needs and priorities of the black family are on a completely different level from the white family.
Disenfranchising the Chineses’ right to self-govern because of your limited frame of reference that they are doing it wrong is myopic. Waging political and ideological war against them because they do things differently is the true crime. You should criticize their bad policies by pointing out why they are bad, not by disenfranchising and belittling the voice of the rest of the population.
That’s what this is about: tyranny versus freedom. It’s disingenuous and frankly racist to compare this struggle to what a poor family lives through, and then conflating that with their skin color. I’m sure there are legitimate concerns with regards to the justice for minorities, but your argument is that that’s only the concern of black people? No. Your argument is a very typical CCP stance that the West best keep out of their dealings. No, I say, let’s stand for freedom and democracy when it is truly being attacked.
Are the lives of the Han more valuable than other ethnicities?
This is the same argument that “they made the trains run on time”.
So like what the CCP is doing to Hongkong? In spite of having agreed not to?
Giving them money buying their products _is_ influencing, preferring them to hire manufacturers there _is_ influencing, influencing is just not just the opinions you dislike people giving on the internet about the situation there, in reality such comments are near nothing compared to the influence actual money and American (and world-wide) business exert politically by doing business there.
> for the most part they’ve lifted hundreds or millions out of poverty
The genocide or religious groups is a price far far superior than anything any sensible human being would pay to get their country out of poverty, btw are you counting the people living in cages a 'out of poverty'? And are you counting those who died living in extremely toxic conditions near factories as 'out of poverty'?
They did that by stop screwing up the economy and let capitalism do its things from the 80s on. Giving them a win for a policy of “stop meddling” I guess makes sense, but only from a perverse point of view. The best decisions the CPC made were to stop doing things.
If you'd please review https://news.ycombinator.com/newsguidelines.html and use HN in the intended spirit, we'd be grateful.
I'm sure you can express your substantive points thoughtfully, so please take the spirit of the site to heart and do. We'd be grateful.
Granted, it’s small production numbers, but have to start somewhere.
Sure, I want my products to be cheap, but there might be some hidden costs that will eventually show up at a very inconvenient time.
Sure, Apple can do CKD assembly of their products everywhere, the manufacture of custom parts is the tricky part.
And worse, even this is still a very optimistic projection given that it might be impossible at all. Samsung was lucky in that they were still producing majority of their semiconductors in South Korea, of course, which makes them still important enough to China. I don't know if Apple holds any thing comparable as a negotiation card.
Don’t want to risk offending someone and harming the brand and it’s squeaky-clean, inoffensive values!
iTunes was great, but can you imagine Apple-made music?
> [Cook] became the first CEO of a Fortune 500 company to come out as gay in 2014.
This led to one Russian institution taking down a statue of Steve Jobs, I recall.
It was only 5 years ago, but it was a first for someone with that career status.
The moment the CCP tried to influence a US company the US should have responded in kind - open the market or face tariffs
It's upon other political systems to ratchet open these totalitarianist systems.
Thanks for increasing the influence of authoritarian regimes in our Western world.
Last time I checked, freedom of speech is a human right.
Thanks for not defending it.
With a gay ceo on top ( with all respect, it means they should better respect/understand Western values and freedom than other companies), these actions make clear that privacy and security are not on top of apple's list as they claim. It's profits and nothing else. They just pack innovation to have another POV and privacy and security was the easy tactic.
Screw you, crApple.
It seems unfathomable to me, a person who doesn't know much about supply chains etc
We fight still.
Not because we see hope. But we fight may be we can have hope. Or our kids. Or our grand. Or at least we can tell them we do not run like our father and grands. We stay and fight.
Apple seriously needs to stop knee jerk reactions and pause to think about the values its been trumpeting. Its actions seem to portray a company that will say things that are favorable to it in the market. I don’t believe that to be the case in every instance with Apple, but soon these actions will drown out the positives it has done on its own initiative.
The sooner Apple moves manufacturing out of China, the better for it and others. There are many other markets it can make money in.
I am no fan of China - in the news recently a couple of our politicians have been called out as having a 'cold war mentality' just because they pointed out there differences between Australian and Chinese values - but I have to keep using Apple devices to develop and support software for clients. Likewise, I bet no matter what Apple does there will be others who stick with them as a matter of commercial reality. 'Commercial reality' has been and will continue to be China's way to be a mandatory part of world events.
When it comes to shifting manufacturing, it seems like the main lower cost choices are “worse” and “less worse”. The less worse choices may be other countries in Asia, each with its own drawbacks and baggage, like Vietnam, India, etc.
Seems many Americans think that companies somehow have to have a moral or something. The explicit purpose of setting up a for-profit company is to make it explicit that the company is out after earning a profit.
If there is a choice between two options, and one will lead to less profit, the choice is obvious to them. If you think Apple is "for encryption" because they are just the good guys, you're missing the picture of why a company exists in the first place.
I would only put trust in organizations who are not for-profit companies if it's for important things. I couldn't care less about food-delivery services for middle-class and above, but for hospitals, prisons, water, electricity and so on, you can't have (well, you can [look at the US], but usually doesn't turn out great for the people, only the stakeholders) for-profit companies running them as the incentives are all misaligned.
Early in the US history, all companies existed through acts of congress and thus were implicitly for the betterment of the USA.
The theory of corporate ownership... Or at least the fashion trend... Has changed through the years. But many still hold onto the old ideals.
We live in a democracy, which means that we can change the 'purpose' of companies as long as enough Americans agree on it.
As such, your argument cannot assume a particular definition or purpose of companies. Instead, the question should be... Is the current for profit model really best for America?
Regulation usually is used for help controlling that (and regulation is normally set by representatives of the people in that state)
You're outlining a healthy perspective on change, which I thank you for. Also means we can continue to push for more better changes.
Apple wouldn't be doing it if it cost them significantly, as we see with them compromising their supposed values under Chinese pressure.
The reason companies do this is not to be a friendly company in general and care about the world and it's people. If that was the point, they would have created a non-profit or similar. The criticism of hypocrisy should come when they make those ads instead.
Look at the Activision/Blizzard situation where a player was banned for speaking for a cause they believe in, they release different statements in different countries (one pro-China in China and one not pro-China in the US), and applies different rules in different cases where it makes sense for the market. In China, shouldn't speak about freedom for Hong-Kong and in the US, it's important you support LGBT. The company will reflect that in their advertisement, where they want people to buy their products.
However, with so many major American companies selling and sourcing abroad it can be argued they should no longer be considered American, but Global corporations. And a Global corporation has to be as inoffensive as possible to any potential market in the world, China included.
Now, of course it hurts to see these things happen, but that's jut the complexity of the world we're living in. On the other hand, if Apple were to collaborate with the Chinese government on providing backdoors etc., it would be a whole other story.
"On the other hand, if Apple were to collaborate with the Chinese government on providing backdoors etc., it would be a whole other story. " Then I got news for you! Everyone in China who is using Apple (with their nice ideals and everything) and using iCloud, have all their data easily accessible to the Chinese government, as iClouds servers are run by a state-owned company.
And what are they? if not capitalism and opportunity? Because that's exactly what Apple is doing with China, making money.
But let's cut the hypocrisy here. All these "values" advertised by American companies are PR and marketing for their American audience, nothing more.
Just like Nike faking to care about civil rights in US while using child slave workforce overseas to make cheap shoes. And it works because consumers like narratives, not facts.
Apple is all about narratives, to make Apple client feels special, as a luxury brand.
Also, unsure of how it works in the US, but usually shareholders are not bound by any ethics as far as I know. Sure, if they would be unethical, people may boycott the company and it would do less profit. But I don't think there are laws saying a shareholder/company needs to be ethical. It's just good business currently to be ethical.
There have been a few interesting pieces in the FT that make something of a mockery of the benefits of focus on shareholder value. Finding that it is usually of short term benefit, but longer-term detriment to the company, and ultimately shareholders.
Can any entity glorify civil disobedience historical figures and bend to the wills of a country known for gross human rights violations? Of course it can but it shouldn't.
"It's better to be a pirate than to join the Navy"
To the extent that a corporation can have abstract things like ideals, this seems like a betrayal
Yes, but what China does is go one step further by making extremely clear that Western corporations who want to do business with China don't disparage the Chinese government publicly, don't talk about Tibet, don't call Taiwan a free country...
And every company has the choice, it's just that they chose to abide by Chinese rules, that's all.
I mean the bill always comes due, always. For 30+ years the west has depended on China to produce consumer grade products such has high tech, toys, and what not, looking the other way when it comes to human rights, and now people are complaining that a bloody dictatorship behaves like one? When trade agreements were signed, why did no other world power imposed ethical conditions on China? Because building our stuff in a bloody dictatorship to drive down cost is what all the west wanted, that's all.
It's a bit easy to wake up 30+ years later and act all surprised that there are political consequences to this.
Look at Hollywood, the biggest propaganda tool in the world, bending over backward not to offend China because of their cinema market. All these "actors/activists" so vocal about everything, you never hear them talking about China curiously, That's the bill I was talking about earlier. Now they work for China.
I mostly do agree with you but one point worth considering is that many people didn't "wake up" 30 years later, they were born in the last 30 years and don't want to accept the world that their parents handed them.
A couple months ago it was Russia. Now it's China. In a year from now, it will be the next country it's convenient to US foreign policy to hate.
I don’t envy Tim Cook and his role as leader of Apple, beholden to Wall Street pundits always seeking growth, and yet espousing safety and privacy for all on its platform and yet caving to the Chinese government. That said who knows if the claims made in Tim’s email about harm coming to Chinese police from the app or attacks on citizens not sympathetic to the HK protests — there’s so much misinformation out there and it’s in China’s best interest to spin things.
Black Mirror, from memory, season 3 episode 5(?), a soldier fights a non-human enemy that is simply hiding from them. [Spoiler ahead] Turns out, military manipulation of the soldier's brain causes him to see non-humans where there are actually helpless humans.
Independence Day 2 lent their story, one of fighting alien invasion, to US armed forces recruitment videos. Actors gave mock interviews about their brave children who fought the aliens, and viewers were encouraged to join the REAL armed forces to be like the fictional ones fighting the fictional enemy.
This scratches the surface of what I mean to compare Cook's alleged requests to. Apple, without military money, asked writers to be sensitive of another nation. Their motive: a wider audience and more subscribers and customers. Heinous and selfish--sure, why not--but a far cry from recruiting folks to dump napalm on villages or use Iraqi farmers as target practice.
As a freaking media company, producers and other executives ask for content and define the market in which they want to address. It sounds like that's all Apple's really done. And if they've actually made an effort to curb US propaganda about China, then, even better. But I think it's more about expanding to a very promising market.
This obviously shifts the tone of any war movie to the point where we could almost call it propaganda. How can movies be true to history if they're not allowed to ever show a major player in a bad light?
Apocalypse Now, Full Metal Jacket, Platoon ... There are probably more movies critical of war than promoting it. Actually, the general theme is to display the senseless of war than to glorify it. To say hollywood is in the pocket of the pentagon is to ignore most of its history.
China on the other hand, won't approve a movie if winnie the pooh appears in it.
It's not comparable to what Chinese do of course, but the intention is there. Anyone who directly compares Chinese censorship to US censorship is an idiot.
The story goes that the US Army refused to cooperate with Heartbreak Ridge once they read the script, but the USMC agreed without reading it. That’s why you’ve got the corrupt supply sergeant, the useless platoon commander, the cowardly company commander, the unit that is forced to repeat basic training and everything else that portrays everyone but Clint Eastwood’s character in a poor light.
And we didn't even get to censorship of any sexual content, where depictions of human bodies make sure that US will censor it.
It's really hard to be sympathetic to this US hand-wringing where we've had our own content censored constantly under conservative American value system on American platforms.
You can’t in China.
The act of NOT giving resources and bases to film makers is not censorship.
For all the indirect pressure, anti war movies do exist as do movies that challenge American systems and narratives of superiority - from within their own country.
Dissent is enshrined as a part of existence in america.
In China it is anathema, and they explicitly and implicitly act to maintain that strength.
Hence the whole point of the article - it’s not america which is asking Apple to take down apps because they hurt China’s image, and it’s not America telling the NBA to correct its errors.
When people kneeled in america during football games, or highlighted their protest, it was handled publicly and all sides were audible.
political tribes fought over the act on the air waves- but that’s something that doesn’t happen in China at all; No one was whisked away to a re-education camp.
P.S. Just wait until you get the Chinese value system, which surprisingly censors everything US does and much much more.
- Full Metal Jacket: 1987
- Platoon: 1986
Anything more recent?
- Hurt Locker: showing the lack of clear morality (good guy/bad guy) in war
- American Sniper: showing the lasting psychological damage that war can inflict on the individual soldier.
Even though some of these movies depict individual heroism in war, none of them would be allowed in China (without heavy editing) because they are at their heart, critical of the entire endevour.
"Kyle meets Taya Studebaker at a bar, and the two soon marry. He is sent to Iraq after the September 11 attacks. His first kills are a woman and boy who attacked U.S. Marines with a Russian made RKG-3 anti-tank grenade. Kyle is visibly upset by the experience but later earns the nickname "Legend" for his many kills. Assigned to hunt for the al-Qaeda leader, Abu Musab al-Zarqawi, Kyle interrogates a family whose father offers to lead the SEALs to "The Butcher", al-Zarqawi's second-in-command. The plan goes awry when The Butcher captures the father and his son, killing them while Kyle is pinned down by a sniper. This sniper goes by the name Mustafa and is an Olympic Games medalist from Syria. Meanwhile, the insurgents issue a bounty on Kyle."
How this disproves that "Hollwood is unable to record a movie depicting modern US millitary in any critical or non-heroic manner"?
If you have mentioned Generation Kill I would have given you props but it is not an accident that many people in US have not heard about that series (and the book).
It's very critical. While American Sniper does indeed glorify the heroism of individual soldiers, it simultaneously criticizes the entire endevour. Yes, the lead protagonist is depicted as a hero, but he is never confident in his own morality, and even develops a professional kinship with the people that he is ordered to kill. It also highlights the severe physiological damage that war can bring, the movie ending in tragedy.
While American Sniper may glorify the individual warrior, it's largely critical of war itself.
Which is a voluntary process. How does that compare to top down state censorship?
If an executive asks for changes to remove homophobic comments from a Western film, they are not engaging in "top-down state censorship". That's just a person helping other people not be jerks.
I seriously have no idea what you are talking about. If I had to guess, you are comparing removing hate-speech to adding CCP propaganda. Those are the same thing.
Can that possibly be right?
It's not. People get recruited to look the other way as Uyghur graveyards get disappeared, not to mention what is done to people. The main difference is that the Winter Soldier hearings didn't just take place, you can still watch them on American websites, or buy the movie from American sellers. Or take this: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Russell_Tribunal
> The Russell Tribunal was included by historian Guenter Lewy as part of a "veritable industry publicizing alleged war crimes", as increasing numbers of American servicemen were stepping forward with published accounts of their experiences with atrocities, and scholars and peace organizations were holding tribunals dealing with war crimes.
That is not at all comparable with the situation in China. And even as bad as COINTELPRO was, notice the difference between https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/COINTELPRO#Intended_effects and "disappear anyone deemed an enemy, disappear who talks about it, if the people protest, roll over them with tanks". We also don't only ever hear about the Kent State shooting from people living in exile, or see it in archives of non-US news organizations.
There is propaganda on both sides, but basically zero criticism or reflection (allowed within earshot of the government) on just one of them. That the crickets are chirping under the CCP while atrocities of the US military are heavily publicized and discussed, also by American filmmakers and journalists, in itself says a lot.
(It's kinda funny really - in the movie the hero returns to earth disgusted because she had to help with operations colonising neutral worlds. And then joins the Air Force.)
Maybe you would have repeated the same line if Disney was making cartoons for the Soviets or Nazis last century. And to that I say, bug off.
Since you don't seem to want to use HN as intended, I'm not sure what there is left to do but ban you. I can't help but feel like you don't really mean to be aggressive, though, and are somehow doing this for some other reason. So, one last plea: if you don't want to be banned on HN, please read https://news.ycombinator.com/newsguidelines.html and take the spirit of this site to heart. There's no reason why you can't make your substantive points in keeping with those guidelines. Yes, there are many bad comments that get posted here. That's no reason to be abusive and make this place even worse.
However - if you want to make a moral argument against another side in a conflict, you need to make sure that you're actually standing on a moral high ground. At least if you want to recruit allies on your side. And, if you read the news, current US administration hasn't been treating their allies too well these last years. And US will need allies to resist Chinese influence.
I don't hold any sympathy for the Chinese, but it's also hard to see how following just another bully in an unequal relationship would benefit my non-US government.
This isn’t the us army making the argument or the American state. Normal people are.
How is this different from saying “only people who have never sinned can speak out against evil.” With the added dollop of whataboutism?
You can't make a moral argument ("China is evil!") without being on moral highground. Having your own moral highground questioned when you're trying to paint youself as better is not "whataboutism".
There's two way how you can go about this argument:
1.) You can debate purely realpolitik - where morals don't matter and only the benefit of US or China hegemony is taken into account. This can be a hard sell though, mostly due to how current administration relentlessly attacks even their historic allies.
2.) You can debate on basis of keeping a free and modern society and how US keeps Chinese totalitarianism at bay. But then you will have to accept having your own morals questioned. Screaming about Chinese totalitarianism when the current US president actively avoids and attacks the US justice system trying to keep him accountable is hypocritical.
How is this in any way comparable to China where people have to come up with homophones/alternate words to literally get around armies of state censors?
Which makes me wonder: when I first read his post I found it quite interesting and, in fact, it confirmed my experience as a non-American that occasionally watches contemporary American action movies: they're sickeningly propagandistic and paint the military in a way that is, to say the least, unrealistic. It always bothers me, but I'm used to the idea that many people in America buy the idea that soldiers are their heroes, fighting for them and saving the country. It's an idea that in my European country is much less effective and widespread (even if recently the right is trying to make it a thing).
In any case, now I'm wondering what is true and what is not about his statement. I guess I'll have to research it, as I'm curious to know more about this. I have to say that this shows that the trick with propaganda is not to lie but to use some specific facts as a weapon.
Honestly, I wish I had made a throwaway for talking about "political" topics. This account was meant for my more professional stuff. For various reasons I gradually "came out" and rebuked a few hate and war mongering posts. And your comment sounds much like one I believe I made days ago about the rise in anti-China/Eastern smears getting attention on HN.
Please do respect my privacy, but I am an actual, verifiable person who has no affiliation with reputation management, psyops intelligence groups and so on in any country (neither private nor state groups btw).
What I've posted is true, and many others have expanded on it. Some of their supportive posts I'll try find time to research and confirm myself!
"Facts as a weapon", well that's flattering--"pen mightier than the sword" sort of vibe.
But having my history looked into, my identity found, employers contacted in efforts to have me fired, that is scaring me. That's a weapon governments use to squash dissent against their use of fascism, and I don't see it as good use of facts as a weapon.
My immediate thought is to delete all my posts, change my usernames everywhere and shut down professional accounts. But then the pushers of Chinese occupation, invasion, suctions, proxy-wars or general weakening of a state I admire (at least above others) get a gold star.
Anyway, I'm going to stop posting. Hopefully I can find another username I like when I want to post about product releases.
Even showing actual facts can get you in trouble.
I have definitely learned a lot from your posts and hope you do keep them up.
I checked and no it’s not
The person is very clearly pro-China. But “their entire account” looks like a normal hacker news user except for their political leanings
To the mods: potty mouths aren't the problem on HN, the spreading of fake news is.
I struggle to define this "anti-war anti-democrat anti-media (usually pro-Trump)" demographic I see online. Just a light scratch of the fingernail and their entire ideology falls apart.
Also Apple: We make all of our products in a country that brutally oppresses these people!
China is not a gay-friendly place though — gays often hide their homosexuality from their parents and parents often insist “it’s a choice.” The younger generations are more accepting though (although still not nearly as much as in the West). But I think this is more due China’s level of development than it is to the CCP.
It's not so much China as it is Xi and his minions. There are 1.2 billion hostages under the control of Xi.
Just remember you're dealing with people who have bizarre logic. For example the Dali Lama is old and his new successor by tradition reincarnates. But China the PRC has demanded "that he must reincarnate, and on their terms." Now that's nuts.
You’re vastly underestimating how successful the CCP’s propaganda campaigns, censorship, and patriotic education have been. Actually, even without those, the CCP’s economic successes have earned it a lot of legitimacy (deserved or not). A more liberal successor to Xi might be able to nudge the ship to a slightly less nationalistic direction (a noticeably less hostile foreign policy) but I suspect a hypothetical liberalized China will take generations.
Remember media like Buzzfeed wants you to be enraged, it keeps you coming back for more.
In all of the above, someone has already beat you to it. You want to anger a country that is already under siege from terrorism, yet not angry enough to still want peace and trade with everyone. Making them angry might actually be quite hard. And I'm not sure I want to see them angry, because they would win a war of attrition if it came down to it.
A Buzzfeed article about a media company executive's business plan and content strategy made you angry, though. So angry you wanted to strike back--not at Apple or their executives--but at China, who are victims of Trump's trade war and growing hostile presence around it's land and sea borders.
I watched a Chinese film. A character, meek but incredible at mathematics and game theory, is lured into a game of life and death. He and some peers devise and plan to survive the game together, but he's betrayed and awaits execution while his friends survive off the game elements they shared (imagine casino chips or something). He manages to buy back into the game and then uses his strategic skills to save those who tried to have him killed so they could take their shared money. The film ends with the protagonist saying, "Maybe everyone only cares about themselves. But even if it seems crazy, I will help people no matter what. That's just how I am. Crazy."
You go ahead and try take some revenge on China because of Apple executives. For me, I'd rather consider the Chinese values revealed in that film, and in the actions and achievements of the nation over the past decades. Misplaced pettiness I do not see among them.
You seem a bit brainwashed, but the betraying part kinda nailed it in that Chinese movie.
That's a very weird POV for showing Chinese values, but it could be correct :)
Just not the way you anticipated it.
Eg. How would Hong Kong, Tibet or Taiwan feel vs. China.
How would any foreigner feel in court if it was a Chinese vs foreigner there.
How would any neighbouring country feel vs. Their international waters occupied by China.
How do Western countries feel that, for 20 years, China is lying about one of their conditions for joining the WTO.
And how does someone feel just not agreeing with Xi, about his fellow Chinese citizen, getting doxed on social media, because of another way of thinking. Not everyone agrees though.
Ps. Yes, most are politics and Xi, but the social credit system is merging politics to citizens.
Here's a pic about some people not agreeing with your Chinese values:
Reality vs a movie
Here's a list of companies that have bent over for Chinese censorship requests:
You can add any others that you know of.
This is what it must have felt like for a sane person watching the Nazis coming into power.
Hannah Arendt described it well in an interview, and it also sheds light on contemporary mental gymnastics, especially on HN.
Apple, the NBA, Google, and Blizzard are all trying to make money. Somehow shilling for Pepsi is widely accepted, but shilling for China is too far?
Uhh yes? That's a completely valid line of acceptance for people to have. One of those things harvests organs out of people in concentration camps. How is this confusing?
The bigger the organization, the more likely you're going to find some bad stuff. Apple's got worker suicides. China has probably harvested organs from prisoners.
None of it's great, but I don't really know how to judge how bad China is proportionally. How many organs would they have to harvest to be comparable to how many children were forced to harvest oil for PepsiCo?
It's not like they're taking everyone's second kidney.
But I also understand that the biggest objections are the religious / moral ones, and I don't know maybe that doesn't bother people as much in China?
We have this issue all over the US. Private prison contracts often have a "minimum filled cell" clause that causes penalties to the city/county/state if there are too _few_ people incarcerated.
Isn't the thing to be offended about that you're consuming media that you think is an artistic work, but it's got some propaganda mixed in with it?
If you're doing business with Pepsi and your workers are publicly trashing Pepsi, it makes sense that you'd put a stop to it. That's what Apple (and the rest) are doing with China.
No the thing to be offended about is genocide. Art can go fuck itself compared to that. No offence to art or dislike for it.
HK is getting most of the China attention lately but right before that it was all directly about the Uyghurs. HK gets more attention because they have more ability to broadcast their struggle. Videos of people fighting police are more entertaining than satellite photos of bland looking buildings.
That China is forcing abortions and harvesting organs from people in concentration camps is what gives the HK and global business capitulation stories their edge though. A country slightly reducing the independence of one of its cities isn't all that big of a deal, unless that country is evil incarnate. Businesses working within the framework set by, and cooperating with, the governments they are working under isn't a big deal, unless that government is evil incarnate.
It turns those things in to the equivalent of Poland being swallowed up by WW2 Germany and allied countries fueling the German war machine. Yes I am making a Nazi reference, of which I consider the CCP to be within the ballpark of.
Not to mention Kashmir, which isn't even in the news anymore.
The idea that everything that touches China is toxic seems reasonable, but it still doesn't explain why are we suddenly drawing the line at censorship in entertainment. Everything is made in China, and Apple is no stranger to the Chinese market.
I don't know how it worked with the nazis, but I'd guess at some point it became unacceptable for US companies to do business with them. Maybe that's where this is headed.