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China preventing Apple from selling legitimate iPads while permitting sale of knock-offs
Howard Richman, 2/13/2012

The Los Angeles Times on February 13 reported (iPads seized in China over trademark row) that the Chinese courts are preventing Apple from marketing iPads in China. Here is a selection:

An obscure Chinese company’s battle with Apple Inc. over who has rights to the iPad name took another unlikely turn after authorities in northeastern China seized dozens of the Apple tablets for trademark infringement, an attorney for the company said.

The seizures in Shijiazhuang, capital of Hebei province, were in response to a complaint filed by Proview Technology, a company based in the southern Chinese city of Shenzhen which has stymied Apple’s bid to secure the trademark in China for its hot-selling device.

In December, a court in Shenzhen unexpectedly rejected a lawsuit by Apple claiming it was the rightful holder of the iPad name.

In general, the courts in China do the bidding of the Communist Party of China. This particular decision went against Apple, even though Apple had bought the rights to the iPad name from Proview back in 2006, as the Los Angeles Times article points out:

Proview International registered trademarks for the name IPAD in Europe, Mexico, China and other parts of Asia starting in 2000. The plan was to launch its own hand-held tablet, but that proved unsuccessful.

Proview International instead chose to sell the IPAD trademark to a company linked to Apple for $55,000 in 2006. Apple thought that included the rights to China, but that trademark was still in the hands of Proview International’s Shenzhen subsidiary, Proview Technology.

Meanwhile, according to an article in the China edition of the Wall Street Journal on July 11 2011 (The Ultimate Knock-off: A Fake Apple Store), knock-offs of Apple iPads and iPods are on sale in electronic markets throughout China.

The Chinese government is using the same technique to suppress legitimate Apple sales that it uses to suppress sales of US made movies, music and software. It delays the sale of the legitimate products while freely permitting the sale of pirated copies.

The Obama administration is continually fooled by promises, such as the one just made this week by Chinese Vice President Xi Jinping, that the Chinese government will, someday, seek a more balanced trade relationship with the United States. Meanwhile, the U.S. mercandise trade deficit hit a record at $295 billion in 2011, representing about 3 million U.S. jobs lost to China. Each month, for the past 23 months, the U.S. merchandise trade deficit has been worse than it was the same month one year earlier.

Obama's most likely opponent in November, Gov. Mitt Romney, is winning support as a result of his tough talk regarding China's trade cheating.   Reuters reports from Seattle:

Romney received a warm reception from the audience of about 300 Microsoft employees. The world's largest software maker is especially interested in intellectual property issues, having lost billions of dollars in Chinese sales over the years due to piracy.

So far, the Obama administration has failed to protect American workers and businesses from China's trade cheating and stealing of American technology.

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Comment by Steven, 2/15/2012: The Chinese government loves ... China. That's not a problem, it should be normal. The problem is that the people of power in America... hate America.
I don't believe they don't understand the problems of unbalanced trade - Keynes talked about it (Krugman will never mention THAT), Feingold and Dorgan introduced a bill about it (to be stonewalled by the rest), etc, etc. Besides, the benefits of balanced trade and the evils of unbalanced trade are so logical and mathematically precise that it's very hard to misunderstand them. The mainstream economists have to pull rabbits out of their sleeves in order to make you believe otherwise.
Apparently, the media, government and economics establishment are driven by ideology, a narrow and damaging agenda of some sort. The important question here is why such a situation can persist? What systemic defects allow such policies to remain unchallenged until it's way too long? I started looking into it and I publish the results on my (add-free) blog. votersway.com

Response to this comment by Howard Richman, 2/15/2012:
Steven, I just put up a link on our sidebar to your Votersway blog. And while I was at it, I put up a link to Emmanuel Goldstein's excellent blog. More and more of us are figuring out that balanced trade is the solution.




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