FRONT PAGE CONTRIBUTOR
Apple submits to Chinese state censorship.
Because it is weak.
I guess that it doesn’t matter if information wants to be free, or not. If your major source for manufacturing iPads has an issue, then that’s the end of the matter: “Apple has disabled its news app in China, according to a person with direct knowledge of the situation, the most recent sign of how difficult it can be for foreign companies to manage the strict rules governing media and online expression there.” For the benefit of somebody who might only be familiar with English as used by The New York Times, the phrase ‘the strict rules governing media and online expression’ is semantically equivalent to the word ‘censorship.’ The Times is using the former instead of the latter because the Times doesn’t like admitting that it’s picked the wrong side when it comes to American foreign policy.
Now, this is the part where I’m supposed to be at least mildly sympathetic that Apple had to turn off its news app in the People’s Republic of China because the alternative would be having to deal with ChiCom complaints and corporate warfare over every time Apple told its Chinese users something that the ChiComs didn’t want their subjects to hear. Alas, I’m not sympathetic to Apple at all. This is part of the devil’s deal that the company made with the PRC in order to get a pipeline of cheap electronics; and while I’m happy to criticize the PRC, Apple doesn’t really have that luxury. They knew what the deal was.
Which is not to say that watching Apple’s fan base get a little disconcerted over this news lacks for amusement. Contrary to popular belief, this is not a difficult problem for a company to have: they can either actively work with a repressive nation-state to keep that nation-state in power, or they do not. While I admit that not working with the repressive nation-state requires a good deal of moral courage and not a little financial risk, we’re not talking about what’s prudent. Merely what’s right. Telling the People’s Republic of China Censor your own damned subjects would have been the right thing to do.
But, again: there’s that pipeline of cheap electronics to consider. What makes this particularly egregious is that the Left is supposed to be all about the downtrodden; they certainly harp on it at any opportunity, or none. And yet the Activist Left is out there, busy supporting-by-proxy all of those regimes that like to enthusiastically smash the downtrodden right in the face. It’s almost as if their entire pious shoving of their restrictive morality in our faces is a profoundly hypocritical act…
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Moe Lane (crosspost)