Many Chinese manufacturers are behaving as though they have no future

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Cheeto Stain broke it.
Cheeto Stain can break anything.


I wonder how this is going to impact Kickstarter projects? At least two-thirds of the (mostly) board games I’ve backed on KS have been Made In China…a small count have been manufacture local to the creator. And I have no idea how many non-gaming KS projects leverage Chinese manufacturing, but I imagine this behavior could put a definite crimp in fulfillment.


The line in “The Maltese Falcon” goes “the cheaper the crook, the gaudier the patter”, and it’s equally true that the more corrupt the businessman, the less he’s focused on the long term.

He’s certainly accelerated the process by substituting pointless trade wars built on empty bluster for diplomacy.


fwiw, nice image choice by whoever put it up there. This is one painting in a series by american artist Thomas Cole, the series called “Course of Empire” depicts several version of the same bay/inlet over time as a civilization arrises, becomes corrupt, and crashes and burns.


a major shift in global manufacturing wouldn’t be an easy transition, that short term view also doesn’t leave much incentive to do things cleanly or sustainably. when you are grabbing as much as you can on the way out things are burning.


The thing I find most concerning about this is the level of deep connection between any major Chinese company and the Chinese central government… Is the short-termerism described in the article an attitude of Chinese business executives or of the Chinese government? If it’s the latter, then the world stage may be in for far more upheaval than just another Great Recession once the shu mai hits the fan…


That was my first thought. I have had a lot of success with backing projects there with some careful vetting and some luck. Right now I’m waiting on the travel tripod from Peak design. With the rapidly changing situation there it doesn’t make sense to back any future projects, regardless of the who the Kick starter is by.

If I lived in Hong Kong or even Taiwan, I would be looking for some other place to live. I have a feeling that the %$#@ is about to hit the fan on multiple fronts.


The short-termism among executives in the private sector is partly a response to the tightening of state control over private companies.

China’s economy is hurting right now. On the one hand, food prices are soaring. See China’s consumer prices rise at fastest clip in nearly 8 years, as pork prices continue to soar. On the other hand, exports are plunging. See China’s exports decline for third successive month in October. Reliable economic indicaters (as opposed to official government statistics) paint an economy in trouble. See China’s economy is in more trouble than markets think. See also China’s car sales drop for 16th consecutive month as October falls 4 per cent. The tariffs are not helping nor is the Chinese government’s crackdown on private businesses. On top of the economic issues, many Chinese companies have become both wary of and angry at the West, particularly the United States. This too makes things riskier for foreign companies.


And the line in Casablanca, “I don’t mind a parasite. I object to a cut-rate one,” dovetails nicely, I think.


A good friend of mine who has lived and worked in Hong Kong since 1985 (when we graduated college) moved back to the UK earlier in the year. Although it’s been her home for all her adult life (and her daughter was born there) and she speaks fluent Cantonese, it just was too big a risk her and her family to stay there.

Single data point I realize, but she did stay through the disruption at the end of the British lease in 1997 (when many Hong Kong Chinese did not - which started the foreign-owned property boom in Vancouver, BC)

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19 minutes into the future…

Blank Reg : Welcome to Big Time Television. All day and every day, making tomorrow seem like yesterday. Now remember when we said there was no future? Well, this is it. Right! Next up, more of the same.


the overlap between business executives in chinese companies and people either in government or at one remove from government (red army, “princelings”, etc.) is likely significant. i’m well-prepared to be concerned.


Ok, but U.S. corporations focus almost exclusively on quarterly returns. R&D investments are a fraction of what they were when I was a kid (I’m 56…arthritic…ooooh), low cost debt has resulted not in plant and employees, but stock buybacks at market top prices, and there is little thought given to environmental concerns. I’m guessing you’re including the U.S. corporate system as equally corrupt as the Chinese (seriously, having read your output, I’m assuming you agree; just didn’t state it in your post. Am I right?}

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Why do you say “but”? The MBA mindset is one of the major malaises of late-stage capitalism in the U.S., as I’ve noted here before. It’s a different, more chronic and less acute form of self-destructive corruption.


Some Kick starter project got copied even before getting founded. A copy of the product is available month prior to your own production process.

You can’t run a medium size business in China without CCP members on your board. This is not deep connection, this is Full connection.
All Chinese so called “private” companies are CCP controlled.
It goes the same for any hospital or school. You can’t be independent. Period.
Huawei excuse is a bit example. No way this company could grow without the CCP telling them what to do.
And it goes further on the way, as foreign consumer you are using a Chinese made product.

Let’s take DJI drone for example:

Any company based in China is entitled to get their servers there. it’s called China Data Protection Regulations (CDPR), implemented in 2018. Use google for more.
DJI is a Chinese company based in Shenzhen.

Any server based in China is subject to full disk dump to the authorities, without a need for any warrant.
It’s called Regulations on Internet Security Supervision and Inspection by Public Security Organs" (公安机关互联网安全监督检查规定) , since 2017
It gives many interesting power to the police.
“Copy any user information found on inspected systems during on-site or remote inspections.”
This is something that was implemented in 2017.

Please check the “privacy policy” when you sign in to the DJI go app. All these details are sent back to DJI servers.

I have put the main one below.
Device-Related and Flight-Related Information. When you use DJI Products and Services, you may provide us with information relating to (i) your DJI Product or Service, your non-DJI device on which the DJI Product or Service is used (including computers, phones, or other devices where you install or access DJI Products and Services ), and your photos or videos that you upload using DJI Products and Services. This information may include: (i) information about your non-DJI device (including your device ID, hardware version, and operating system); (ii) information about your DJI device (including the model and serial number of your device); (iii) geolocation data relating to your non-DJI device and DJI device and any photo or video you submitted using DJI Products and Services; (iv) information about any photo or video recorded, including the name of the video file, the length of the video , EXIF data relating to the photo or video; (v) other technical information, including the IP address used by your non-DJI device, and flight data ; and (vi) data associated with your DJI account.


I just couldn’t tell who you were pointing your (very finely honed) finger at.

I worry about Shenzhen. It has frontiers with Hong Kong and everything tech comes from there.

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