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November 15, 2011

America fired itself from a job

Households in the US have more Chinese products than in Chinese homes

By Abdulateef Al-Mulhim

Americans have no secrets. They even tell their enemies what they have up their sleeves. For example, Aviation Week & Space Technology Magazine contains the type of information no country would have revealed about aviation/space program, aircraft and missiles or national defense. The magazine is always translated into Russian and put aboard an Aeroflot plane from JFK Airport to Moscow before it hits the newsstand on Broadway. And American $100 bills are the best trademarks in the world. Yet, there are more $100 bills in the Gulf region than in the states of Washington, Oregon, Idaho, Montana, Wyoming, North Dakota, South Dakota and Nebraska put together.

In the past, all you needed to sell a product was just put three words on it (Made in America). People in Saudi Arabia would use Pillsbury baking products, G.E. products, GM products and American tools. America was on top of the world. Every country owes America a favor. They liberated Europe, rebuilt Germany and Japan, discovered oil in Saudi Arabia and freed China from Japanese atrocities. In the 1960s the American blue passport was the best protection anyone can have. Now, it is simply a good target for any anti-capitalism crusader. America has the best economic schools and the brightest brains in banking, but they couldn't see an approaching trade competitor. America has the best spy satellites, but they failed to see what one country with a billion inhabitants could do. So, if America has the best highway system, the biggest banks, the most prestigious universities and the most educated people, then how can they lose their job to a country they saved from the Japanese atrocities in the 1940s? This country is called China.

In the 1980s, when the Chinese were ready to wake up from centuries of hibernation, America was busy with very minor things that kept them from seeing the outside world. The American press and the think-tank people were busy analyzing the wrong pieces of information. For example, when the Carter administration was busy evaluating the plus and minus regarding the Panama Canal Treaty, the American press was busy trying to find out what the White House chief of staff was doing at Studio 54 in New York. And when the Reagan administration was getting involved in Afghanistan, the Congress was not aware of the Japanese purchase of America. And when George H. Bush administration was ignoring the clean air issue, Iran was rebuilding its nuclear capability. And when the Clinton administration was getting terrorist threats from every corner of the globe, the American press was busy trying to know if Monica Lewinsky was wearing a Wonderba at the Oval Office. And when the hard-working American taxpayers were worried about their monthly mortgage, the Bush administration decided to spend $100 billion to invade Iraq, even though the US generals didn't have a clue of why they are marching to this Arab country. And when America achieved the most historical election in the history of democracy by electing the first African American president, the American press could have used the event to help this young president persuade top CEO companies around the world to buy American-made goods. Instead, the American press was busy finding out if their president living in the White House was really born in the US.

All this fails into insignificance when we remember how America acted nice and had Harvard top economic graduates visit China — a country the size of America, but with four times its population. The American analysts thought China would be a nice market for American goods. Can you imagine if half of the Chinese people had a Pepsi each day? They thought China was a jackpot. They saw streets in Shanghai wider than Long Island Express with a few rusty bicycles. They saw very primitive airports. The Chinese industrial machines were their bare hands. In 1972, there was more money in one single American city (Las Vegas) than in all of China. And there are more bridges in New York than in all of China. Also, there are more cars in Los Angeles than in all of China. They saw so many uneducated peasants. To the American economists, China was a sitting economic duck. 

Just ten years later, the American homes have more Chinese products than in Chinese homes. Sears and Wall Mart, the American symbols were full of Chinese products. The Chinese goods are in such big demand that Wall Mart built mega ships that travel between the two countries in half the time regular ships would take. They come to America full of goods from China and the only thing they take to China from America is the ballast water.

A few weeks ago, Saudi Electric Company gave a contract worth billions of dollars to Mitsubishi, not General Electric. Did I talk about Saudi Aramco contracts with the Chinese companies? What happened to the Aramco standards that were tailored in San Francisco in the 1940s? Now, America has really fired itself from a job. Saudi Aramco not buying American? Well, the US Air Force preferred Airbus planes to Boeing for their midair refueling tankers. How patriotic can you get? May be next year, we will see the US Navy Virginia class submarine serve Chinese Fortune cookies instead of Oreo.