China's strategy for economic development specifically includes stealing foreign innovations in order to develop domestic technology and manufacturing. China's goal is to be the world's biggest exporter based on stealing U.S. know-how and subsidizing Chinese manufacturers.
That's only part of China's strategy to cheat Americans. When U.S. companies build plants in China, Beijing forces them to disclose their technology in order to gain contracts, and the result is that major U.S. corporations, including our biggest technology companies, have given away their most valuable industrial secrets.
It gets worse. China has adopted an official policy called "indigenous innovation."
That's China's label for anti-American trade rules that prohibit imports and U.S. manufacturing in China unless based on intellectual property developed and owned in China, with its trademarks registered in China. This new rule targets our most innovative manufacturing and service industries, including computers, software and telecommunications.
The Chinese government's list of products subject to this obnoxious rule is constantly expanding. China's "indigenous innovation" policy forbids U.S. products from being sold in China unless the U.S. companies give China their current patents and technology plus information about their research and development of new products.
China has no plan to be a market for U.S. products. China's principal imports are and will continue to be U.S. jobs.
The right of inventors to own their own inventions is a precious American right written into our U.S. Constitution even before the famous rights of freedom of speech and religion. This inventors' right is uniquely American -- it was an original creation by the Founding Fathers, and it's still unique in the world.
That's why nearly all the world's great inventions are American. Our superiority in inventions and innovations is the principal reason for our world leadership and standard of living.
For years, foreign corporations have been trying to destroy our innovation superiority under the code word "harmonization" -- i.e., persuading us to harmonize our patent law with foreign laws, down to the levels of unfair European and Japanese systems.
Now communist China has replaced the harmonization slogan with indigenous innovation, China's code word for theft. We are fools if we allow China to steal our innovations, which are the mainspring of our high standard of living.
Phyllis Schlafly is a national leader of the pro-family movement, a nationally syndicated columnist and author of Feminist Fantasies.
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