Mon, Jan 25, 2010 - Page 8 News List

The benefits of putting up a fight

By Paul Lin 林保華

While China’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs denies that this is the case, we must ask why the Chinese government cannot arrest the hackers but can arrest online dissidents. The reason is simple — the CCP supports these hackers with vast amounts of funding.

Fifth, if China’s Internet users had the freedom to choose, they would opt for Google over the “official” Chinese search engine Baidu (百度) because Google can give them access to more information. This is the source of Google’s leverage. Despite the company’s current difficulties, it has established itself as a brand that is trustworthy and capable of providing more information than any other search engine. It is only a matter of time before Google is rewarded for its hard work.

Finally, foreign investors in China must give up the idea of quick profit and take a more long-term view. Conspiring with corrupt officials may offer immediate gains, but it does not provide a sense of security. First of all, this involves cooking the books, as this is the only way to list the funds spent on bribes.

Once that happens, the CCP will have them by the throat, leaving them at its mercy. This is why foreign businesspeople in China, including Taiwanese, are terrified any time auditing is mentioned. The only way to turn the Chinese economy into a true market economy is to assist reform and bolster the judicial system. The word “socialism” would no longer need to be mentioned and foreign investments could be guaranteed.

In this battle, Google will be pushed into a corner and have to fight its way out. I hope it will proceed with caution.

Paul Lin is a political commentator.


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