November 7, 2007

Where does Congress get off...

Just where does Congress get off insulting Yahoo founder Jerry Yang for giving up a Chinese user to the Chinese Government.   Don't get me wrong, I not only think Yahoo was wrong to give up the user, I don't think Yahoo should do business with China at all.  But to have to sit, for hours, and listen to holier than thou congressmen berate you -- I don't think I could take it without berating them back.

"While technologically and financially you are giants, morally you are pygmies," Tom Lantos (D-Calif.), chairman of the House Foreign Affairs Committee, told the corporate titans.

Oh really, Mr. Lantos, is that what you think, that I'm a moral Pygmy.  Just why is it that Congress is borrowing  hundreds of billions of dollars from the Chinese  so  you can all  send your  blood money to your constituents  for  your pet projects  so you can get reelected.  If  I'm such a moral pygmy for giving free email services to the Chinese, what does that make you.  Doesn't the actions of Congress allow the Chinese government to keep their people in chains far more than my company's actions?

Rep. Christopher H. Smith (R-N.J.) said he saw a "parallel" between Yahoo and companies that helped the Nazis locate Jews to be sent to concentration camps.

And if my following the Chinese goverment's order to give up the name of a user makes me a Nazi, just what did Congress do to CNN, CBS and the other networks who showed the faces of the Tiananmen Square protesters to the world?  The Chinese used the feeds from those networks -- who were just doing business in China like me -- to round up thousands of dissidents and you're berating me for one?
"It is repugnant," Rep. Dana Rohrabacher (R-Calif.) told the executives. "It would be funny if it weren't so sickening."
You members of Congress find me sickening -- classic projection -- you do far, far more business with China, you are on the verge of allowing our best athletes to go to China for the Olympics so that China can put on a brave, bold and free face on their society.. and then you bring me here to insult for hours while you all sit back funneling Chinese money to your home districts. You make me sick, Congressman.

"Shi Tao's mother is sitting in the first row right behind you," Lantos told the pair. "I would urge you to beg the forgiveness of the mother whose son is languishing behind bars due to Yahoo's actions." Callahan waited a bit before moving slightly and making a perfunctory nod in the direction of Shi's sobbing mother.

Shall I bring in the parents of the children working in the Chinese sweat shops to provide goods for American retail outlets so that Congress can apologize to them?  Where do you get off, Congressman, blaming me for the actions of the Chinese government when you and your ilk, who have the real power to make an impact on their society do nothing.

Lantos was just beginning. "Mr. Yang, why is it that after craven cooperation with the Chinese state security apparatus, the provision of false information to Congress, the failure to correct the record . . . the only person punished is an innocent journalist?"

"At the end of the day I feel that everybody was doing the best they can," Yang answered quietly.

Lantos, usually a mild questioner, was not finished. "You still have done nothing," he said, "to help the family whose breadwinner your behavior put in prison. . . . Can you explain why?"

Yes, Congressman, I can.  I am not responsible for the actions of the Chinese government.  You seem to believe that American Companies do not have to follow the laws of foreign governments when we are doing business in those countries.  Do you afford the same courtesy to foreign companies in America?  Do foreign companies have to follow American laws when doing business in America?  Does Japan have to follow our child labor laws in their American plants?  Does Germany have to follow our pollution standards in their American plants?  Congressman why do you think business are leaving America and moving to other Countries like Mexico?  It is because of not only your laws, but because of the constant and never ending greed of Congress.  So stick it, Mr. Lantos, you may be able to make me come here and listen to you, you may be able to hold me in contempt for not kissing your Walmart penneyloafers, but you cannot make me listen to your hypocritical ranting without response.

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