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Upside Down Under

By Marvin Baker, a new weekly column in The Kenmare News

 

The Chinese take another step...

Posted 5/13/14 (Tue)

Have you ever heard of the Alibaba Internet site?

It’s a Chinese website, a lot like eBay and it is making a lot of waves on the World Wide Web.

Several weeks ago there was a TV report suggesting that Alibaba is about to be placed on the New York Stock Exchange. In the segment, a bunch of Chinese guys were drinking champagne and whooping it up.

My first thought, reaction, was nausea. Second, this is a Chinese company, what are they doing on Wall Street?

My third thought was that as much as we don’t want to admit it, China remains a communist nation and is a sworn enemy of the United States.

But that’s all political and doesn’t have anything to do with me conducting commerce on the Internet, right?

After all, this is modern, it’s all written in English with Caucasian people in the graphics, it is easy to navigate and my goodness, are products cheap. Some entries even use the word, “cheap.”

I took the liberty of looking at some items that I am in need of  purchasing.

They include new car tires for $20 each, a new refrigerator for $79, how about a Shenmao chainsaw for $30 and a new Wanfu pickup truck for $8,000 that even has a cattle guard attached.

I also looked up agricultural products and since I believe I know a little bit about organic garlic, went to that entry. What I found was stunning.

I can purchase a ton, yes 2,000 pounds, of organic seed garlic on (alibaba.com) for $400 U.S. dollars. Typically, I pay $20 a pound, which would come to $40,000 a ton.

A ton of feed barley can be purchased for $280 and a ton of organic wheat is priced at $325.

I looked at some other “organic” products and read through all the descriptions and in all but one entry, couldn’t find any sort of certification to prove the product is organic. The one I did find was the wheat, which was certified by an Indian company called APEDA.

What is the first thought that comes to your mind? Cheap, too good to be true, not worth it?

When are Americans going to learn that Chinese products are “cheap” and if you buy a refrigerator for $79, it might work a month and quit, then you have just lost $79.

We should have seen the red flag in 2006 when more than 200 dogs died from melamine (rat poison) laced dog food from China.

A couple of years later, baby formula coming from China had melamine in it to mimic other nutritional properties.

After the 20ll flood, we were getting inundated with Chinese Sheetrock that, for lack of a better word, fell apart.

This all reminds me of one of those obscure history lessons at UND that I’ve never forgotten.

In 1938 President Franklin Roosevelt went before Congress to let them know the Japanese were amassing a fleet in the Pacific. Congress told Roosevelt the American people had no interest in being worried about the Japanese.

Less than four years later the bombs went boom.

In 1997, I had the opportunity to be on a military mission in Panama. At that time, there was talk of the U.S. pulling out of the Panama Canal Zone and abandoning our bases there.

In 1999 that happened and over the years, Chinese “investors” have all but secured the Panama Canal, the most strategic point on the face of the earth.

That was my first red flag that the Chinese can’t be trusted? My second example came when I was getting new Army issue clothing from supply. I actually received a U.S. Army issue pair of gloves made in China. But in 2003, when everyone had to wear berets, Soldiers around the world protested because the berets were made in Israel and Canada.

And now, Alibaba is about to get a spot on Wall Street with its “cheap” products. Take a look for yourself, (www.alibaba.com). I’ll admit, I was tempted by the ton of “organic” garlic for $400 that didn’t have an organic certification. It’s obviously too good to be true.

The best entry though has to be farmland for sale in Russia. For about $400 an acre, you can own some of the best farmland in the Tver Region of Russia.

Remember, this is China; cunning, cold as ice and a nation with an ulterior motive to collapse the United States economy.

If this kind of trading keeps up, China will have as much control over the United States as England had over the colonies before the Revolutionary War started.

Don’t trust China!