Viewpoint: China and the Manzullo mambo

Not so long ago, this country’s government saw fit to grant China Most Favored Nation trading status. How grateful was that Asian giant for that move?

Far more recently, The Washington Post reported that designs for nuclear weapons that turned up last year in Libya have been traced back to…yes, China.

According to the Post, the nuclear technology was funneled through Pakistan to Libya and other countries in Asia and the Mideast.

U.S. experts said papers turned over by Libya revealed designs for bombs and other nuclear weapons that contained stunning evidence of China’s long-suspected role in the transfer of nuclear know-how to Pakistan in the early1980s.

Pakistani scientists then sold this information to other nations situated around the Mediterranean Sea. As David Albright, a former weapons inspector in Iraq and a nuclear physicist, said: “These documents also raise questions about whether Iran, North Korea and perhaps others received these documents from Pakistanis or their agents.”

Some show of gratitude!

So who, besides the very top level of the federal government, was playing footsie with the Chinese during much of this time?

Who in this area paraded the Chinese trade minister at a local college and waxed enthusiastically over more and more trade with China?

Who voted for every trade agreement that came down the pike and effectively gutted the industrial base of this city? Could it be our esteemed congressman, Don Manzullo?

If you watched your industrial job head overseas to the largest nation in Asia, Manzullo gets a good share of the credit. He could not say enough good things about dealing with the Chinese.

He was still talking about it when some of our smaller shops began closing down and a few of the larger ones started to look shaky.

Was Manzullo here to offer workers any assistance? Absolutely not. He was busy in Washington angling for more power and prestige.

In the last few months, however, the congressman has done a complete about-face on the issue of China. Suddenly, our local jobs are very important to him, and he is scornful of some of the trade agreements he formerly supported. Sounds like John Kerry.

This change in attitude began to become apparent soon after Manzullo met with local industrialists.

We can’t say with certainty that they put the heat on Donny boy because we weren’t there. The suspicion, however, is that they told him to begin doing something to help them, or don’t expect to see any more fat campaign contributions.

He appears to have gotten the message, but it may have come too late to do much good. China intends to become a major manufacturer and a principal player on the world stage.

The Chinese have plans to develop an auto industry and cut into the markets of the big three U.S. car makers. China also is pushing a domestic auto market as living standards rise there, and they are building modern superhighways.

Rockford is lagging behind the rest of the country when it comes to better employment. Factory owners hereabouts report some increase in orders, but not enough to prompt them to boost hiring quotas.

The depressed state of the local economy has caused much of our skilled labor to go elsewhere in search of employment.

Manzullo’s response was to announce a new technical training center to turn out more skilled workers. But if there are very few places to work remaining in a year or two, where are these graduates going to do their thing?

This is all part of a national corporate strategy to move jobs out of this country and take advantage of cheaper labor in developing countries. Push the profits up, reward the investors, and the public be damned.

China is not our friend, and neither is Don Manzullo, nor Bill Clinton, who really opened this can of worms with his China trade policies and the granting of Most Favored Nation trade status to the spreaders of nuclear technology. Remember that and the jobs we’ve lost when buying Chinese goods at Wal-Mart and other stores.

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