Let's start with population. According to the latest US census, we have 308 million people. That seems like a lot of folks, until you look at the Chinese numbers. Their census in 2010 set their population at 1.34 billion people.
Moving away from population let's talk commerce and the trade imbalance. 15 years ago approximately 6% of the goods sold at Walmart were made abroad, and in fact they ran a Buy American campaign. Today over 60% of the goods come from overseas, largely from China, and it's not only Walmart doing it. Think of any of the larger retailers.
|Garlic ready for export|
The trade imbalance doesn't include the goods that are produced in China and then shipped through other countries either. As soon as we pass a law to protect us from a particular food item, they figure a way to route it through an non-restricted country. It's a shell game, literally, but the shells are shrimp. If you want to buy local garlic, look for roots on the bulbs and a less than white color, or shop at a farmer's market. The Chinese garlic is pure white, irradiated, and has no roots attached, it is cut close to the bulb. We have already had health issues associated with Chinese food products, as they do not have the same restrictions as US growers do placed upon them. The problem lies more with the processed food items we purchase, as there is no way to tell where the ingredients in them come from, but one thing is certain, an alarming number of them are coming from China.It's not food, but remember the pet food issue in 2007? Over 1500 pets died from a toxic ingredient in the pet food, that could have easily have been in some of the processed foods we eat. After a year of investigation, here is what happened in China according to Wikipedia....
Chinese state media announces that 180 food factories have been closed for improperly using industrial chemicals and recycled or expired food. The director of the Chinese General Administration of Quality Supervision, Inspection and Quarantine's quality control and inspection department states that "These are not isolated cases." Most of the offending manufacturers were unlicensed food plants with fewer than 10 employees. It is estimated that three-fourths of China's one million food processing plants are small and privately-owned. In addition, the Chinese State Administration for Industry and Commerce states that it closed 152,000 unlicensed food manufacturers and retailers in 2006 for making fraudulent or low-quality products.
This will end part one of this blog. In order to try and present the most accurate information, the research part of this blog took many man hours. I hope you find it was worth it. Next week, I'll look at Chinese education, their investments in us, and their armed forces and tie this all together with a humorous look at the way I could see an attack on us going. Yes, I can make that funny. Feel free to comment and give me more ideas to work with. Stay tuned for part 2.