The Chinese Gutting of America

Just as China has gutted America’s manufacturing base, it has gutted most of our nation’s foundational institutions.

When President Trump imposed import duties on a wide range of Chinese goods, we discovered just how reliant our nation had become on the communist People’s Republic of China for a wide array of manufactured and finished goods.  

A parade of American businesses petitioned the U.S. government to exempt some 13,000 different items from tariffs.

We are by now familiar with the empty factories across the country that once turned out auto parts, appliances, and consumer electronics, all shuttered by cheap imports from China. 

But who knew that the officially atheist nation whose regime persecutes people of faith prints most of the Bibles we read at home and in church? Our worship services depend on China.

Or that China produces the specialized drill bits used to extract oil and gas from the ground? Our energy industries depend on China.

And of course, the Chinese virus revealed just how dependent our health care had become on China.

But more than just these hard industries have been hollowed out. We see the same pattern repeated in academia, finance, media and government.

We have long regarded our institutions of higher education as the crown jewels of America, shrines of academic freedom and free inquiry as well as technical expertise. When they returned home, the story was that students from across the globe would carry the bedrock Western values inculcated by our universities and liberalize the world. 

A nice fantasy; but the reality is quite different. 

A Chinese student at the University of Minnesota was arrested in China and sentenced to six months in prison for tweets he posted while in the United States, Axios reports.  According to Chinese court documents, the student used his Twitter account to post pictures of a cartoon villain that resembles Xi Xinping and of Winnie the Pooh, a character Chinese netizens use to lampoon Xi. 

In response, the University of Minnesota has said … nothing. Add academia to the list of the hollowed out.

This is far from the only example of how American universities have become so dependent on Chinese money they have abandoned all standards and values.

Leading China-watcher and CCP critic Christopher Balding describes the China exclusion rule and how it’s corrupted so many institutions.

“Universities and political science professors will talk at length about foreign interference and disinformation and rightfully so. Ask them to ensure their own universities and departments are following the laws for foreign donations and we get the [China exclusion] response: trust me,” Balding writes. 

We do not know the full extent of the university programs dedicated to everything from foreign relations to climate science that have been tainted by Chinese money.

On another front, Chinese companies listed on U.S. stock exchanges are refusing to follow U.S. securities laws. Those arguing that we should allow Chinese companies to raise money in our capital markets are actually arguing that we should ignore U.S. securities law for Chinese companies. And some of the most well-known bold-faced names in American finance are making this argument.

The unequal application of laws has hollowed out not just American capital markets, but the rule of law itself. 

We expect politicians to be free of conflicts of interest. How much ink has been spilled over the Trump Organization renting hotel rooms to foreign government officials? Meanwhile, current and former Democratic officials from former Secretary of State Madeleine Albright to Senator Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.) and most famously Joe Biden have enriched themselves and their families from lucrative business deals with the People’s Republic.

China has hollowed out the integrity of our political system.

Seventy-five years after the close of World War II, our political system has incorporated international institutions into our foreign policy establishment. These, too, have been hollowed out. 

The World Trade Organization maintains the fiction that the PRC is a developing country, allowing it to maintain tariff rates the Eurocrats would not countenance in any other economy of that size. And while the Beijing regime has never lived up to the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, it sits on the UN Human Rights Council. 

Corporate America has suffered the same fate as the factories with which it was once synonymous. In fact, there is no longer such a thing as “corporate America.” The titans of business consider themselves global, not American, corporations. They control our news and information media—ABC/Disney, AT&T Warner/CNN, Viacom-Paramount/CBS, Universal-Comcast/NBC—and have extensive business interests in China that color their decision-making. 

While industrial America was the arsenal of democracy, Hollywood was the signal corps. From World War II to the Cold War, Hollywood promoted American life and culture—our freedoms, values and can-do attitude as well as our material prosperity—to the world. 

But Chinese influence has gutted this soft power center as thoroughly as it has the Rust Belt.

Mickey Mouse has become Mickey Mao-se. In the end credits, Disney thanks the Chinese Communist authorities running “Maoschwitz” style concentration camps.

Filmmaker Judd Apatow confessed to MSNBC’s Ari Melber that Hollywood’s corporate giants are “not going to air documentaries that go deep into truthful areas because they make so much money” from China. “So while we’re going, ‘Can we say this joke, can we not say that joke?,’ on a much bigger level they have just completely shut down critical content about human rights abuses in China, and I think that’s much scarier.” 

American culture was a potent weapon in the Cold War. The CIA secretly funded international exhibitions of American abstract expressionists including Jackson Pollock, Willem de Kooning and Mark Rothko to contrast American freedom with Soviet conformity. In the end, rock and roll contributed as much as MIRVed warheads to the undoing of the evil empire.

So, too, did American capital. The Reagan Administration blocked financing for a Trans-Siberian pipeline that would deliver Soviet gas to Western Europe. This cut off the hard currency the Kremlin badly needed.

The CCP has penetrated our cultural, financial, industrial and political institutions. This may well prove more decisive than aircraft carrier battle groups to the outcome of the contest between East and West.     

About Curtis Ellis

Curtis Ellis is policy director with America First Policies. He was also a senior policy advisor with the Donald J. Trump presidential campaign in 2016.

Photo: Yaorusheng/Getty Images

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12 responses to “The Chinese Gutting of America

  • It would not surprise me in the least that CCP money is seeding all of these protest groups on /of the Left.

  • Curtis, you’re right about everything except one. The Chinese didn’t do this to us, we did, or especially our elitist leaders of big government, big business, and academia. If it hadn’t been the Chinese, it would be someone else. To quote Pogo: “We have met the enemy and he is us.”

  • “Elite” Academics are Really Traitors to USA !

    Harvard and other “Elite” Institutions …
    Have Lost Their Sense of Respect / Loyalty to the Very Country and it’s Freedoms that have Allowed them to Achieve the Academic Status that They Have Achieved.

    Still further, they have Used their Academic & $$ Status AGAINST the Best Interests of the USA.

    It would seem that They SEE themselves to be Better / Above / Superior > Not Beholding to the USA that has made them What They Are Today !

    The Dark $$ Money in Politics is a fraction of the Dark Money in Education

    In the past year the U.S. Department of Education has identified $6.5 Billion in previously undisclosed foreign funding.

    Harvard and Yale have, by themselves, raked in $$$ BILLIONs of unreported foreign gifts and contracts in recent years.

    There are 86 Confucius Institutes currently Operating in the U.S., including at – Elite Institutions such as Stanford University and Tufts University – Offering a Platform to disseminate Chinese Government or Chinese Communist Party Propaganda, to encourage Censorship, to restrict Academic Freedom.”

    *Most K-12 schools that partner with the Hanban have “Confucius Classrooms,” of which there are about 500 in the United States.

    China isn’t doing this as a Warm Gesture of Friendship.

    It “Wants” Something in > Return !

  • The basic problem is not Red China’s desire to buy us but elite Americans’ desire to be bought.

  • Excellent, extremely well articulated article. China has been used as a Trojan Ox towards realization of a globalist NWO. Seems like only Reagan and Trump have been willing call it and to stop it. Obama and Biden fed and groomed the Ox like no other.

  • Sorry, it was Wall Street and the banksters that arranged for the US industrial base be transferred to China.
    All the CEOs got lots of money by relying on cheap Chinese labor, no unions, no environmental restrictions, just lots of big bonus and increases in stock prices.

    And blaming China for the absolute corruption of the US political system is ridiculous. This article is a joke.

  • China has had about 5000 years to develop its civilization. The US was founded only 250 years ago. I’ll take our country, please. And to the Bidens of our government, stop taking money from China to bend over for them.
    If the Chinese governmental mentality is stuck back in the dark ages, it’s their fault, not ours.
    I’d rather pay a few more cents on the dollar for goods made in a good country, thanks. And I DON’T want to buy vitamins or medicines made in a Chinese lab, thanks!!!! Or cars or kitchen appliances or cheap clothing.
    But I do blame those in any level of our government who are in charge of education, for not giving the best, most appropriate education at every single layer of schooling, for every single kid in America so that our “deepstate” businesses and manufacturers can’t ever say again that they are not able to find enough American skilled workers. Shame on their greedy little selves.

  • If the Chinese governmental mentality is stuck back in the dark ages, it’s their fault, not ours.
    I’d rather pay a few more cents on the dollar for goods made in a good country, thanks. And I DON’T want to buy vitamins or medicines made in a Chinese lab, thanks!!!! Or cars or kitchen appliances or cheap clothing.
    But I do blame those in any level of our government who are in charge of education, for not giving the best, most appropriate education at every single layer of schooling, for every single kid in America so that our “deepstate” businesses and manufacturers can’t ever say again that they are not able to find enough American skilled workers. Shame on their greedy little selves.

  • The CHICOM Government didn’t funnel millions of dollars in bribes through Hunter Biden for nothing. Joe Biden is bought and paid for by the CHICOM Government. In the unlikely event that Beijing Joe Biden is elected, Comrade Beto will be tasked to confiscate all firearms from American citizens, and he’ll have the PLA to back him up. The next biological warfare attack on America will make COVID19 seem like a minor cold. The hundreds of thousands of manufacturing jobs that President Trump has brought back to the USA will be shipped back to China. The United States Navy will abandon the South China Sea, leaving the CHICOM government in total control of commerce on the oceans. Joe Biden will never stand up to the CHICOM Government. He owes them too much.

  • It took courage to both pen and publish this article. The strategic magnitude of the gutting speaks volumes.

  • The Nixon/Kissinger opening the doors to trade with the Red Dragon in the seventies was just another nail in the coffin of American labor. The so called ping pong diplomacy was, in reality, never a back and forth trade off. Nor has it ever been since. It was an oligarchic ploy to suck the spine out of the middle class of this country and stuff their pockets on the sweat of cheap Chinese labor. It has continued in this manner through all administrations, be they Ds or Rs. Anyway that could hogtie working families by gutting what was our strength has been employed. Now that after a half-century of handing out American jobs to the lowest bidder, suddenly become it is the elite class who is ‘woke’ and wants to bring jobs back. As one who happens to believe in American capitalism (notice the small ‘c’), I find those who presently preach the victim mantra as to the precarious situation we find ourselves in as hollow. Blaming the Chinese, or Mexicans (NAFTA), or any other country for the obvious demise of our economy as a shared enterprise will get us nowhere. Ping pong, as a competitive game, still entails a back and forth momentum. Chinese elites played with their workers in mind, American elites might not have even picked up a paddle for their workers. Simple as that. Chinese worker 21, American worker 0. Game over.

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