90 Miles From Tyranny : 10 Ways You Are Ruled By Communist China

Saturday, November 16, 2019

10 Ways You Are Ruled By Communist China

You’re probably reading this outside of China thinking, ‘China doesn’t control me in any way,’ but there’s a good chance the People’s Republic of China has a lot more influence on your life than you may think.While some people may be facing economic hardships due to a trade dispute, or some such political nonsense, odds are, you’re impacted by people over in China all the time. These examples highlight just how the Chinese have taken control of all of our lives.SEE ALSO: 10 Ways Life Will Change If China Becomes The World’s Superpower

10China Owns Tik-Tok

Fact: Tik-Tok Is Owned By China

Tik-Tok is an app, which was released in 2017, but it has gone on to become one of the most popular short-video social media apps for young people all over the world. Even if you don’t use the app, you probably know several people who do, and if you think that there’s no way an app like Tik-Tok could have an influence on the world’s millennial generation, you may not be aware of Tik-Tok’s reach. By the end of 2019, the app had been downloaded more than 80 million times in the United States alone.[1]Since the app is owned and operated out of China, the U.S. government has labeled it a national security threat following an investigation by the Peterson Institute for International Economics.[2] Specifically, the app was noted as identifying the location and activities of members of the Armed Forces who use Tik-Tok. Even more concerning, the biometric data obtained by the app is freely shared with the Chinese government, which has dominance over the cyber industry in the country. If you use the app, odds are, someone in the Chinese government knows about it.[3] 

9China Owns Reddit

Fact: Reddit Is A Vehicle Of Chinese Propaganda 

Reddit is an American company, so you might think it was outside China’s sphere of influence. As a public company, this is not the case, and when the site raised $300 million in February 2019 through stock sales, one of the principal investors was Tencent Holdings Ltd.,[4] a Chinese internet company. The purchase/financing sparked a backlash on the site, which was mainly due to China’s policy of blocking content it finds offensive/potentially inflammatory. These include videos of the Tiananmen Square Protest and even pictures of Winnie the Pooh following online comparisons between the beloved bear and the Chinese Dictator Xi Jinping.Reddit confirmed Tencent’s backing at $150 million[5], and there’s no way the company/Chinese government would invest that amount of capital without gaining some level of influence. China is one of the leaders in cyber defense/offense and seeing as it also possesses one of the most influential propaganda programs in the world, there is little doubt Reddit is a popular destination for potential influence. The site is rife with Chinese trolls, most commonly referred to as “Chinabots”[6] by the online community and the only subreddit that supports the current US president (The_Donald) has been put into permanent quarantine so its influence cannot spread. Pro-communism subreddits are, of course, left entirely to their own devices.[7]

8China Owns Hollywood

Fact: Chinese Influence On American Cinema Is All About The Benjamins

If you’ve been looking over the landscape of Hollywood action cinema in recent years and thought there was a prevalence of giant robots and explosions, you can thank the Chinese film market. While this example is far less nefarious than the ones listed previously, there is no doubt that the average Chinese moviegoer loves to see movies featuring over-the-top action sequences, huge explosions, and amazing fight scenes. While the west enjoys these things as well, the European and American box office receipts would never have allowed for six+Transformers movies had the films not done as well as they did in China.Chinese moviegoers often make up the bulk of a movie’s audience around the world, which means Chinese cash has taken over the market.[8] Why would a movie production company invest millions in a picture the American audience wouldn’t like when the same investment in a tired action schtick earns massive cash in China? The easy answer is, they often don’t. This is the reason Michael Bay keeps making movies despite the west’s rampant disapproval in his work. Chinese people will see his movies, and many more like it,[9] so he gets to make more.

7Global Power

Fact: China Is Quickly Becoming A Global Power

Ever since the fall of the Berlin Wall, the United States of America has long been referred to as the world’s last superpower. China is looking to join that club, and it hasn’t been working at it by invading countries, or by destabilizing governments; China has made its way onto the world stage through pure force of will… and a lot of money. China’s stake in the global economy in 1990 was just 2%, but by 2014, that number had jumped to 13%[10] and growing. By 2018, China had grown its economy to become the second in the world, falling just behind the United States. Over the previous 30+ years, the country moved beyond Italy, the United Kingdom, Germany, France, and Japan to take its current spot, which was noted in 2018 as having a GDP of 13.6 trillion.[11] What does this mean for the average American? China owns a massive amount of American debt, which means any money you pay in taxes sees a percentage going to the PRC in payment of that debt.[12]

6Goodbye Free Speech

Fact: The Chinese Government Has Limited American Free Speech

If you’re an American, odds are, you’re familiar with the 1st Amendment to the U.S. Constitution, which provides Americans with freedom of speech alongside other rights. In late 2019, a rise in protests in Hong Kong over issues the citizens had with an increase in Chinese influence gained the attention of the rest of the world. Many westerners made comments online and in interviews, offering their support to the protesters while condemning the Chinese government. As you can imagine, the PRC government didn’t take too kindly to this.While China can’t tell an American citizen what they can say on their home turf, the nation can limit the airing of NBA games on its televisions, which translates into a massive loss of revenue for the professional sports organization.[13] The General Manager of the Houston Rockets, Daryl Morey, tweeted an image with the words, “Fight for Freedom. Stand for Hong Kong,” which led to an immediate backlash from China. At first, the NBA sided with China and issued an apology, but this drew immediate condemnation from members of the U.S. Congress.[14] Ultimately, Morey’s speech wasn’t suppressed, but the influence China had on the NBA was palpable.

5Military Focus

Fact: China’s Push Towards Becoming A Superpower Has Shifted The West’s Military Focus

China has grown on the world stage as an economic powerhouse, and while this has made huge changes to the global economy, it’s also caused a ripple in defense spending throughout the west. The United States and China are far from calling one another enemies, but they are potential adversaries when it comes to...

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