Also, the statement from congressman Wolf "we have nothing to gain from dealing with them" seems to contradict the very purpose of a collaboration - I'm yet to see a scientific collaboration that goes only one way.
As with most embargoes, both sides will probably lose.
A more reasonable response might be to engage with US companies and technology hubs to improve their defenses.
The culture is entrepreneurial, but it isn't one of invention, it's one of doing something someone else has done and doing it cheaper and at a lower quality. Come to China -- you'll see. There are some good things in China, but they are the exception that proves the rule.
I’m also, like the grandparent, a bit unsure how this is an appropriate measure. Are scientific collaborations used for espionage? If they are not or seldom used for espionage, how does a ban on collaboration result in less espionage? Which benefits of collaboration does the US relinquish?
No. You can't incentivize a country not to spy because that implies some control, some carrot. Making it "hard as hell" is treating the contest with the adversarial framework it deserves, taking for granted that the opponent will or could attack.
>Which benefits of collaboration does the US relinquish?
The honest answer is, none, some, or all of them; and it doesn't matter. Being a political action it is just as much a political statement. China openly gets away with espionage (and openly gets away with putting enough spin on its public statements to make a new neutron star.) Congress is openly saying it doesn't like that.
Not to mention that your string of questions is dependent on the if statements resolving 'correctly.' Honestly I'd be very surprised if scientific collaborations weren't used for espionage.
No matter, we're gonna make tons of money by working together with the Chinese, have fun with your protectionism, USA.
"The clause prohibits the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy (OSTP) and the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) from coordinating any joint scientific activity with China."
That said, this seems pretty crazy to me.
I will appreciate some data here!
India's 'independent' mars mission is not far - http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Indian_Space_Research_Organisat...
India's moon mission was the first one to prove the presence of water on moon - http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chandrayaan-1#Water_discovered_...
I realize this is not aerospace, but NASA is not just aerospace.
Because your interpretation would prevent anyone from NASA attending, for example, the American Geophysical Union conferences, which is ridiculous.
Not if the American Geophysical Union conferences were declared to be part of a foreign policy initiative by the White House.
But bashing China is fashionable.
But they did attack US Navy: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/USS_Liberty_incident
"Israel isn't threatening Taiwan"
But they do threaten and attacked their neighbours. By the same token, China is not threatening Syria.
"propping up North Korean dictators or funneling weapons to Darfur"
Israel is one of the biggest arms dealers in the world, and a lot of those weapons go to the hands of various dictators, e.g. in Africa.
So you want them to remain poor and primitive just because you can't cash in on their success? That's... not very nice.
This protectionist stuff is stupid. I collaborate with people in China on some of my work and one of them started the project I'm developing right now I'm just expanding the project and making it more generic. Lucky for me, the Canadian Gov is the one funding this project.
The Chinese who come here (to the US) are part of the growing Chinese middle- and upperclass and tend to be the most nationalistic of all. Talk to them next time you get a chance; ask them what they think of democracy and freedom, and they'll likely spout PRC government propaganda about how the "Chinese people need to be controlled." We make them into scientists and engineers without succeeding, and perhaps without even really attempting, to make them democrats. We are potentially creating big problems for ourselves and our western and east Asian allies down the road by equipping China with the skilled professionals it needs to produce the weapons of war to threaten the free world.
As for protectionism, if it really bothers you, perhaps you should complain about China's "luxury tax" (import duty) and government-mandated technology transfers for access to their production and consumer markets. China is easily the most protectionist member of the G20.
Do you think they really need technology? They have a population of plus one billion, and the strongest industrial capacity in the world plus just enough oil reserves. If they wanted to go to war, they could already very well do so as is and cause a really big bloody mess.
Look at Iraq, Vietnam, Afghanistan. All of us mistakenly believed the US's "superior technology" would make those missions a cakewalk. Technology doesn't win wars. People do. People we can reach.
And its not Germany vs France at the opening of WWII anymore. China already have machine guns, tanks and nukes (the horror if either "side" ever used one in anger). Diplomacy through cultural exchange is the best option we've got to prevent a cold war style escalation - and luckily the openness of both our cultures is the end goal we want to achieve anyway, right?
(apologies to all for the walls of text!)
As cabalamat says, I don't think there is anything more you can do to teach someone from China about Western values than having them completely immersed in our civilization. Some of our values must be crossing the waters, mustn't they? - if they really are self evidently superior?
I think collaboration is the best we can do - with the scientists and business men themselves, the people that actually matter, who's opinions people over there respect, not through the government. This kind of ban on collaboration hurts that.
There is nothing secret in science anyway. The US governments secrets on the other hand... - I would cynically agree there is always concern there. Both by US people themselves and the Chinese government:)
It's not that much immersion. I spend a fair amount of time in a college town, and the Chinese nationals, with very few exceptions, work play and live exclusively with other student visa holders from China.
If the West is wrong about our ideals being universal, then our society is no better than others anyway and it doesn't matter (in the long run for the overall good of humanity) if the Chinese conquer us.
If our ideals are relative or subjective, wouldn't that make it all the more important to speak out, as to do otherwise would be conceptual-suicide?
Even if other cultures don't hold my values, I still must value them.
I don't disagree about educating foreign students, by the way. Barring empirical evidence to the contrary, my feeling is that exposure to foreign cultures ought to dampen nationalism in the long run.
I don't get this constant fear we Americans always have that as soon as a country sees a chance they're going to invade us. Mainland USA hasn't been attacked in more than a century. The only place this irrational fear could possibly come from is assuming other countries will all behave as we do.
This seems silly overbearing and not likely to effect much change as how China commits espionage is through spies in places like Sandia, not collaborating on science projects. The only difference between our spies and theirs is that ours haven't gotten caught so far.
Does science collaboration/espionage endanger people's lives?
I see your point, though, and agree that science collaboration is not harmful. However, I think that the article was mainly focusing on Chinese military advancement, as most of the attacks cited in the article were on our military infrastructure. Again, I would say that a more advanced military will endanger people's lives.
Personally I'd like to see the rest of the world catch up as soon as possible. I don't subscribe to the idea that for us to be happy people somewhere halfway around the world need to be miserable.
For the record, I do not think the benefits from such a wide ban is worth the price. IMHO banning Chinese visitors from NASA facilities is a terrible idea. Why make it so wide? I cannot help but think this decision is driven by some desire for "punishment", which is not logical at all.