One of the benefits and perils of a multi-office role is that there’s always an office open to work from. Today is a public holiday in Hong Kong when locals spend time honouring ancestors and repairing their internment sites. That’s a perfect excuse to be in Beijing working with the dedicated team of Kreab Gavin Anderson professionals.
At 9:00 am as work got underway the large screen in the office was tuned to the USA Presidential Debate on CNN. This was the third and final such interaction between the candidates. The focus of the discussion was foreign policy.
Before action commenced we wondered aloud if China censors would block anti-China rhetoric. It’s common to watch international news broadcasts and have the screen go black when censors decide sensitive China information is being shared.
So imagine my surprise when Romney ranted against Chinese intellectual property violations – and here in Beijing we could still watch the show. Mitt described a US auto parts maker repairing defective pieces that all shared the same serial number. The parts were copied from the packaging down to the smallest detail – including hundreds of parts all with the same number.
On Day One in office Mitt Romney said he would label China a currency manipulator and would go after the country using international tribunal:
“I’ve watched year in and year out as companies have shut down and people have lost their jobs because China has not played by the same rules. In part, by holding down artificially the value of their currency, it holds down the prices of their goods,” Romney said. “It means our goods aren’t as competitive, and we lose jobs. That’s got to end. They’re making some progress. They need to make more.”
Romney also will use military to “discourage” China.
Obama also took a swing at the CHINA PIÑATA. He said complaints have been filed with the World Trade Organisation:
“China is both an adversary, but also a potential partner in the international community if it’s following the rules,” Mr. Obama said.
No matter which candidate wins, it’s clear that when election season is on, the safest vote is to attack China. Here in Beijing it’s nice to see this dialogue making it past the censor.