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Will you avoid buying gear made in China now?

John Reeve · · Itinerant · Joined Nov 2018 · Points: 0
Blakevan wrote:

That's a post WWII phenomenon.  Prior to current times a lot of companies cared about the communities they were servicing and drawing their workforce from (Ford and Hersey's). There are undercurrents in today's world of CEOs/Boards starting to change their attitude about other stakeholders besides shareholders but I wouldn't get too excited because profits are still key to staying in business.  

Naw, not really.

The history of labor in the US is pretty gross.  I mean, you can call it an improvement over the feudal system, but owning people is a pretty yuck standard to compare systems.  It's not hard find the history of folks literally hiring goons to beat their workforce back into the factories.

The US history with regards to labor in Central America is super gross.  And that "history" is still going on.  I mean, the US was literally funding death squads there in my lifetime to make sure that the economies stayed organized to be hospitable to US interests.

And the US already incarcerated and then liquidated its aboriginal population before the first half of the century, and slightly before I was born started counter insurgency work against AIM and folks like that.... so like, I guess opressing your populations only matters at the time you're doing it?  If you kill everyone and/or force their children to learn your language and "have equal opportunities", then it's all good 2 generations later?  I don't hear anyone who I know who is critical of China but who is okay with the US pushing for reparations or giving back stolen land or whatever.

The place I live at is built on a graveyard.

Yall can call that whataboutism, I don't care.

I'm no fan of China (no gods, no masters, no borders and all that crap).  Seriously, fuck authoritarian regimes.

But typically, beating on China is done by the same jingoistic folks that are a-okay with the imperialistic actions of the US, people who are wholly ignorant of the history of capitalism and the north Atlantic states' colonial histories.  Like, the cops in Texas routinely murder black folks, and I don't hear anyone talking about how they need to stop doing business with Texas.

It is exactly like my vegan friends who are using their diet to feel okay about having really nice jobs; I don't care that they are doing that, but when they try and literally shame me for juat getting by in this shitshow, I don't particularly care for it.  They are just using thier veganism as a prop to feel better about their position in the world economy, as if the fruit that they are eating from central America isn't the product of its own exploitative economy.

I got no problem with them getting by, but I still know that it's just a prop to make them feel okay.  That's fine.  This place is a shitshow and folks should take comfort where they can and be kind as much as possible.

But there isn't an "outside" to our global economy.  

So you can either face up to the fact that we're all implicated in it and act accordingly or you can try and escape it however you think that might be possible.  But the half measure of beating on the governments of brown folks to make your own government seem better by comparison is just another gross habit in a long history.

In climbing there's no rules but no lying, and I think that is what a lot of the folks who are engaging in so-called "whataboutism" are reacting to.
tom donnelly · · san diego · Joined Aug 2002 · Points: 261

I have always tried to avoid buying stuff from China,  especially climbing gear.

They don't follow normal civilized practices,  and have been lying for 30 years about how they will soon be conducting acceptable free trade policy.

Mark Paulson · · Raleigh, NC · Joined Sep 2010 · Points: 141
Brother Numsie wrote: Don't equate governments with the people of any given country.
This. Should a European climber boycott FISH products to protest the concentration camps on our southern border? What, exactly, would that achieve?

Now, should you boycott companies that offshore production? Maybe. Black Diamond brought a bunch of production back to SLC a few years ago (ostensibly good), had a ton of recalls (objectively bad), and are now offshoring production once more. A few decades ago, US manufacturers (aided by free trade agreements) started offshoring manufacturing/machining to cut costs (often at the expense of quality). These companies may have made more in short-term profits, but they (and the US in general) have subsequently forfeited decades of manufacturing advances. Meanwhile, other countries (largely China) have been amassing this knowledge, retooling factories, and increasing quality at scale. Now, even when it's no longer technically cost-prohibitive to manufacture in the US, we often can't keep up. Black Diamond came to the unfortunate realization that a Taiwanese factory can simply make more carabiners at a higher level of quality and consistency than a US factory.

So: Corporations->Lobbists->Politicians->Free Trade Agreements->Offshoring = Literally paying other countries to get better at manufacturing than us whilst hollowing out large swaths of middle-America, all in the name of short-term corporate profits.

Should we be concerned by the human rights records of the countries we get our products from? Of course. Write your senator. However, it'd be much easier to exert power on China if -we- made the iPhones, and we most certainly do -not- make the iPhones.
Brother Numsie · · AnCapistan · Joined Jan 2006 · Points: 880

I have to say, I am seeing more familiarity with Anarchist philosophy than I expected from MP. Maybe there is some hope for the future after all. 

Rob D. · · Brooklyn, NY · Joined May 2011 · Points: 30
Mark Paulson wrote: This. Should a European climber boycott FISH products to protest the concentration camps on our southern border? What, exactly, would that achieve?

Now, should you boycott companies that offshore production? Maybe. Black Diamond brought a bunch of production back to SLC a few years ago (ostensibly good), had a ton of recalls (objectively bad), and are now offshoring production once more. A few decades ago, US manufacturers (aided by free trade agreements) started offshoring manufacturing/machining to cut costs (often at the expense of quality). These companies may have made more in short-term profits, but they (and the US in general) have subsequently forfeited decades of manufacturing advances. Meanwhile, other countries (largely China) have been amassing this knowledge, retooling factories, and increasing quality at scale. Now, even when it's no longer technically cost-prohibitive to manufacture in the US, we often can't keep up. Black Diamond came to the unfortunate realization that a Taiwanese factory can simply make more carabiners at a higher level of quality and consistency than a US factory.

So: Corporations->Lobbists->Politicians->Free Trade Agreements->Offshoring = Literally paying other countries to get better at manufacturing than us whilst hollowing out large swaths of middle-America, all in the name of short-term corporate profits.

Should we be concerned by the human rights records of the countries we get our products from? Of course. Write your senator. However, it'd be much easier to exert power on China if -we- made the iPhones, and we most certainly do -not- make the iPhones.

I agree with almost all of this post but I want to point out that economic embargoes and boycotts have been helpful tools in creating change in the past and I think you are discounting them pretty heavily in the start of your post.   A single person boycott might not accomplish anything, but much like protesting or writing your senator, if a large enough group stands up then that pressure can (sometimes) bring about change.  Should a single person boycott fish?  I mean, probably not?  But if enough people in Europe decided that enough-is-enough and stop sending money to American companies (companies that are paying taxes that help fund concentration camps and drone strikes) then change is possible.   It has to start with someone. 

Insert name · · Conway, New Hampster · Joined Dec 2011 · Points: 60
Jake Jones wrote:

And you are, who exactly?  The Oath of Enlistment ends when your enlistment does.  Yes, I absolutely think that someone that got duped by their government into whatever amalgam of patriotism/statism that exists now enough to sign up to die to defend corporate profits overseas has more right to bitch about the policies that same government pushes.  Let me say that again, so you can disagree with it again.  If you were willing to give your life for what you believed was defending the constitution and American freedom (or some idea of those concepts) then yes, you 100% have more right to bitch about the government and its policies than someone that was not.  I don't care if you disagree.  No, that is not the same as a cop or politician that is corrupt.  There is no abuse of power in my opinion; there is no corruption on my part that is hurting anyone else, so your comparison is fallacious.  I just feel that my grievance against the way shit is run (especially shit overseas) is more poignant and valid because... oh, I dunno... I actually had to witness some of it and be a part of it.  Kind of like if you live in a shitty neighborhood and have to deal with the crime and litter and decay, you have a bit more of a right to bitch about that neighborhood that someone that lives  three suburbs over and doesn't really have to deal with it in the same way.  Again, I don't really feel like this is that difficult of a concept to grasp, but you seem to be having such a hard time with it.  

Also, I didn't say we were as bad as China or that one group deserves privilege over any other.  So, that again is a fallacious argument.  You're positing things that I never stated as if I did, and then arguing against them.  That's what people that don't really have a point do.

You aren’t entitled to more of a opinion than others. That is the same statist stuff you are saying you are against. Unless you believe Trump deserves more of a opinion because he is El President (or any other politician).

You just said people that were “duped” into serving deserve to be treated as better? Pretty sure it is no ones fault but your own when you signup and obviously means you didn’t fully think out serving. (Unless you were drafted). I don’t agree with a lot of the military actions, but If I signed, either I comply or deal with the consequences. I don’t get to have a hero complex to pretend i’m more Entitled than those who didn’t get “duped”. 
The China thing wasn’t about you, it’s about all these other people comparing China to the US.
You Really Are The Greatest · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Sep 2019 · Points: 0
Jake Jones wrote:

 If you were willing to give your life for what you believed was defending the constitution and American freedom (or some idea of those concepts) then yes, you 100% have more right to bitch about the government and its policies than someone that was not.  

Everyone SHOULD have equal amount of right to bitch about the policies of their country, just because you were stupid enough to believe something doesn’t grant you any additional rights...and I was also suckered into a similar situation, thankfully I didn’t fall for the lies that being a “tough guy” mattered, so I did AF, which in the long run helped more corporate interest than any other branch.

If you were dumb enough to believe “those” lies back then, how do you know you aren’t currently believing different lies now?
Eric · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Oct 2008 · Points: 10

It is never a good idea to give admin privileges to someone who has an explicit superiority complex.

Cole D · · Sydney, NSW, AU · Joined Sep 2017 · Points: 15
Rob D. wrote:


I want to be totally clear and say that while I brought up the USA in my initial post, I definitely  didn't mean for it to become whataboutism.  It wasn't the right thing to post in a conversation about China specifically, but I thought it was worth having as part of the broader discussion about how people vote with their money.  

I don't think our own missteps excuse those of other countries and believe that boycott is one of the best tools when it comes to actually trying to change something (money matters).  I think that my point was more that there are companies from countries that aren't currently running concentration camps, namely DMM and as others pointed out, fixe or other spanish companies. Vote with your money!  

Now if someone could please find me hummus not made by an Israeli company that would be awesome

I do happen to be a fan of totems

DRusso · · Unknown Hometown · Joined May 2014 · Points: 825

I wonder how many of these comments were typed on Apple products made in China...

Mark Paulson · · Raleigh, NC · Joined Sep 2010 · Points: 141
Rob D. wrote:

I agree with almost all of this post but I want to point out that economic embargoes and boycotts have been helpful tools in creating change in the past and I think you are discounting them pretty heavily in the start of your post.  

I'm aware of the effectiveness (and ineffectiveness) of embargoes and boycotts. I also know that even if you were to somehow drum up a grassroots movement within the climbing community to boycott Chinese-made climbing products, it would have zero impact on Chinese human rights policies (and remember, this thread is just pertaining to consumer choice at the individual level). We're talking niche products in a niche market. And what companies are we even referring to? BD? I don't think I've got a single piece of gear made in China (Sportiva, Scarpa, WC, DMM, Metolius, USA-made BD, Sterling, Bluewater, Arcteryx [harnesses still made in BC]), and that's without even trying.

Our current administration is still acting like our power and influence over China hasn't been slowly eroding for decades. Meanwhile China has been pushing massive infrastructure growth both in-country and around the globe (especially in Africa).  While we've been busy calling Africa "shithole countries", China has, through undercutting the IMF and World Bank, lent various African countries billions of dollars (at predatory rates) in exchange for access to ports and controlling interests in rare-earth mines.  They've poured more concrete in the last 3 years than the US has poured in it's entire history (and has done every three years for the last decade-and-a-half).  Meanwhile, the US has relied on speculation and bubble-based economies to try to keep it's faltering hegemony in place (stocks in the 80's, tech in the 90's, real-estate in the 00's). We had a great head start, what with a couple hundred years of slave labor and the untapped natural resources of an entire continent to exploit, but the get-stuff-for-free tap ran dry a long time ago, and we seem more interested in having a -vastly- out-of-proportion military to enforce the few pies we still refuse to remove our fingers from than investing meaningfully in our own country.

(This is not to say that China should be emulated or admired in any way- only that they're doing a much better job at positioning themselves globally for what's coming (climate change, resource scarcity) than we are.)

There're only three ways to keep a "growth" economy going: getting-stuff-for-free (natural resources, colonial/imperialism, slavery), making stuff out of thin air (fiat currency, monetary instruments, credit), and authoritarian rule. They're all unsustainable, and each in its own way puts the bulk of the discomfort upon the backs of the poorest and most vulnerable. 
Luke Roberts · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Jun 2016 · Points: 0

Rock empire for life. 

Alex Milton · · Portland, OR · Joined Mar 2017 · Points: 0
Brother Numsie wrote: I have to say, I am seeing more familiarity with Anarchist philosophy than I expected from MP. Maybe there is some hope for the future after all. 

It's kind of incredible how often I hear people that would never claim to be anarchists express very anarchaic opinions and ideals. Most folks seem to have a very misconstrued idea of what anarchism is and looks like in the wild. 

spaceman laflare · · purpskurp nebula · Joined Dec 2017 · Points: 0
DRusso wrote: I wonder how many of these comments were typed on Apple products made in China...

this. 

If you folks really wanna make a difference, kill the humans. 
Jake Jones · · Richmond, VA · Joined Jul 2011 · Points: 1,754
Scott Fagen wrote:

 just because you were stupid enough to believe something doesn’t grant you any additional rights

Fair enough.  A cogent rebuttal to what I said.  I still don't entirely agree, but I do see your perspective.  In fact, I'll say that because I believed in that patriotic marketing nonsense, that may mean that I have less of a right to bitch- except for the fact that kids fresh out of high school- especially from poor and dysfunctional homes are usually the ones that end up being bullet stoppers.  So, I guess the people that weren't "duped" because they actually had decent parents and a good upbringing have just as much right to complain.  I don't know if I agree with that either.

If you were dumb enough to believe “those” lies back then, how do you know you aren’t currently believing different lies now?

Because 17 coming from a dysfunctional home and just wanting to gtfo is quite a bit different than being 44 and a having a few hundred books and a couple decades of research under my belt.

Jake Jones · · Richmond, VA · Joined Jul 2011 · Points: 1,754
Insert name wrote:

You aren’t entitled to more of a opinion than others. That is the same statist stuff you are saying you are against. Unless you believe Trump deserves more of a opinion because he is El President (or any other politician).

You just said people that were “duped” into serving deserve to be treated as better? Pretty sure it is no ones fault but your own when you signup and obviously means you didn’t fully think out serving. (Unless you were drafted). I don’t agree with a lot of the military actions, but If I signed, either I comply or deal with the consequences. I don’t get to have a hero complex to pretend i’m more Entitled than those who didn’t get “duped”. 
The China thing wasn’t about you, it’s about all these other people comparing China to the US.

Ok.  I'm not comparing the level of atrocity from one to another.  I'm saying if one were to not buy from a company because of the actions of the government of that country, you'd be hard pressed to have a clear conscience when purchasing anything- from virtually anywhere- especially considering global markets.  And to another's point- I don't think that a company- especially a small company's interests align with their government.  So, in a roundabout way, yes, you may be punishing the government indirectly by affecting to an infinitesimal degree that country's GDP by boycotting them.  So what?  To the other point, if you're going to not buy from China because their government has committed terrible acts against humanity, then to not apply the same stringent standard to your own country is... well... remiss at the very least.  That was my only point.  

George Bracksieck · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Oct 2008 · Points: 1,503
Jake Jones wrote:

Ok.  I'm not comparing the level of atrocity from one to another.  I'm saying if one were to not buy from a company because of the actions of the government of that country, you'd be hard pressed to have a clear conscience when purchasing anything- from virtually anywhere- especially considering global markets.  And to another's point- I don't think that a company- especially a small company's interests align with their government.  So, in a roundabout way, yes, you may be punishing the government indirectly by affecting to an infinitesimal degree that country's GDP by boycotting them.  So what?  To the other point, if you're going to not buy from China because their government has committed terrible acts against humanity, then to not apply the same stringent standard to your own country is... well... remiss at the very least.  That was my only point.  

It’s not remiss because China has surpassed the US in terms of the abuse of human rights and the environment. Americans’ decades of purchasing goods made in China by American companies has made China our greatest rival, economically and militarily, all while China continues to conduct the genocide of Tibetans, Uighurs and other ethnic groups. China’s goal is to ethnically cleanse Tibet and Turkestan. And China is, by far, the greatest polluter. 

When we buy anything, we are casting a vote for how it is made and where. When we buy something made in China, a big portion of those funds go into the government coffers. In the US, far less of a purchase goes to Washington DC. While the US has conducted genocide against Native Americans and enslaved African Americans and continues to persecute or disadvantage them and other minorities, we have made progress. Likewise with the environment. And, after the next election, progress should resume. In the meantime, buying products of the US, Mexico, Canada, Central America, and most any other country but China, helps the businesses and economies therein. Buy local, and invest with your values. 
Nivel Egres · · New York, NY · Joined Dec 2014 · Points: 160
Insert name wrote:


While I agree Iraqi civilian (or any civilians)were innocent, they were collateral damage of war. They were never the intended target.
Unless you start claiming Ford is responsible for taking of Innocent lives by producing cars, death is a byproduct of life. 

Since the war was started on false pretenses, "Ford" is not a valid comparison. A good model would be a drunk driver that hit a pedestrian. The perpetrator is guilty even though his intended purpose was to get home from the bar. 

Insert name · · Conway, New Hampster · Joined Dec 2011 · Points: 60
Nivel Egres wrote:

Since the war was started on false pretenses, "Ford" is not a valid comparison. A good model would be a drunk driver that hit a pedestrian. The perpetrator is guilty even though his intended purpose was to get home from the bar. 

The false pretenses were executed by a Select number of high ranking officials. I didn’t support the military Actions with its endeavors at that point. But blaming the entire US on a few crooked politicians is a far cry from China or another country.


Regardless, innocent bystanders die in every war, everyday life and have been since the start of human history. Maybe I am desensitized from
Watching my friends/family die from war/drugs/etc. but honestly I don’t see how a world would exist without conflict/violence. 
Ma Ja · · Red River Gorge · Joined Sep 2017 · Points: 116
Insert name wrote:

But blaming the entire US on a few crooked politicians is a far cry from China or another country.


...but honestly I don’t see how a world would exist without conflict/violence. 

Your argument is weak. If these "few crooked politicians" were not influential, maybe youd have a decent argument, but the reason why people blame the "entire US", is becasue they were our elected leaders.


And to your last line, that is just your conditioning. The same people that start wars for personal gain, are the same ones that need the majority of people to assume that deadly conflict is just part of the game, and there's nothing anyone can do about it. It's not.
Guideline #1: Don't be a jerk.

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