They conquered the U.S. the smart way – not with guns and bombs but Business. In about two years, China will officially overtake the U.S. as the strongest economy in the world, according to economists. But unofficially they might already have been running the show for some time.
That doesn’t surprise me. Every nation rises to success through focus and determination. Success can make people complacent and lazy, and then someone else takes over. Just like individuals, nations can rise and fall. As a result of great prosperity, Americans fell into an entertainment and fast-food stupor from the 1980s onward and were then easily conquered.
Americas record-breaking obesity is an outer symbol of their prosperity – and subsequent complacency. Nobody is conquered from outside if they haven’t first conquered themselves on the inside.
The idea for this article started while examining a list of the biggest fast food restaurants. I wanted to write an article about healing obesity, when I noticed something else.
The thing I noticed is all the American flags beside the restaurants. But that’s how it was 30 years ago. Meanwhile, China and others have quietly and gradually bought up many of these brands, so their designation as “American” is not all that accurate.
But why not change their designation then? Update them to Chinese flags? Maybe because that would alarm the people who are gradually being conquered. 😉
An example: KFC, Taco Bell and Pizza Hut are run from the Xuhui District in Shanghai by a company called Yum China. Taco Bell is not Mexican, Pizza Hut is not Italian and KFC is not Colonel Sanders from Kentucky. These three “competing” brands are all the same company. Yum China also runs Lavazza, Little Sheep and Coffii & Joy, among others.
I reckon if we add KFC plus Taco Bell plus Pizza Hut, then Yum China is the largest provider of fast food to Americans.
A company based in Toronto, Canada called Restaurant Brands International owns Burger King, Popeyes and Tim Hortons. So I guess you’d have to remove the American flag from those too.
This pattern of companies being labeled American while run from China, runs through every other industry.
A good example is Hollywood. There is a Chinese company called Polybona Films.
“Founded in 1999, Polybona was the first domestic private firm to receive a film distribution license from the SARFT. In November 2003, it merged with the China Poly Group, a wealthy business conglomerate wing of the Chinese military, the People’s Liberation Army, to form PolyBona Film Distribution.
Polybona is the parent of the “American” company TSG Entertainment. You probably know neither of these companies. But you certainly know 20th Century Fox and Walt Disney. They depend on TSG for the funding for their action movies. TSG has funded X-Men, The Wolverine, A Good Day to Die Hard, Kingsman, Poltergeist, Deadpool, Logan, Maze Runner and many, many others. Polybona has also directly produced movies for Sony Pictures and Lionsgate (without using TSG as intermediary). Lionsgate, one of the Hollywood Giants of the last decades, by the way, is also co-financed by Hunan TV, based in China.
This is all on public record, anyone can look into it.
Long story short: Since more than 20 years, companies affiliated with the military branch of the Chinese Communist Party or other state-owned Chinese companies have a majority influence on what kind of programming goes into the minds of Americans.
Another example. Wikipedia says this about AMC Theaters:
“AMC is an American movie theater chain headquartered in Leawood, Kansas, and the largest movie theater chain in the world”.
Most of these companies say they are “headquartered in America”. They are called “American” based on that. But a little later in the text, we read:
“The company is listed on the New York Stock Exchange; from 2012 to 2018, the Chinese conglomerate Wanda Group owned a majority stake in the company. Private equity firm Silver Lake Partners made a $600 million investment in AMC in September 2018, but the voting power of AMC shares is structured in such a way that Wanda Group still controlled the majority of AMC’s board of directors”.
The Dalian Wanda Group is in Bejing, China. This group also runs Starplex Cinemas and Legendary Entertainment. That’s the company that brought us great movies like The Dark Knight, Inception, Watchmen, Interstellar and many others. Meanwhile, Legendary Entertainment has also struck a deal with the Chinese Film Group, another firm owned by the Chinese State. That’s a broad majority of “American” movie theaters run from China. Along with the majority of Blockbuster movie productions. And the fast food that goes with it.
What about the cars that take you to the movie theater? Uber is partially owned by Baidu and DiDi, two companies that operate out of Bejing. Lyft is partially owned by Didi as well. And there I thought Lyft and Uber were competitors. One of the most famous “American” companies, General Motors, is partially run by Shanghai Automotive Industry Corporation.
Chinese Business influence is remarkable. Chinese companies have partial ownership in Tesla, Spotify, Reddit, Snapchat, Warner Music, General Electric, GNC (Health Foods), Smithfield Foods, Lexmark, Electrolux, Microsoft Phones and many, many other companies that would surprise most people.
People who say “Americans run the world” are still living in the 1980s. Look at the dilapidated infrastructure of the U.S. vs. what’s happening elsewhere around the Earth. Are Americans even running their own country? If they were, would they be getting the majority of their food and entertainment from their declared “enemy”? I don’t know.
My point? Well, I’m not a political commentator, I’m a success-coach. My motive is not politics or finger-pointing, it’s to show an example of macro-level success vs. failure, which is really no different from the individual micro-level. Things happen long before they manifest for all to see. Focus leads to success, but success can lead to lack of focus. Bad times create strong people. Strong people create good times. Good times create weak people. Can this cycle be avoided? Certainly, here’s how:
Every time you land a big success, think “this is just the beginning” or “you ain’t seen nothing yet“. After success is no the time to rest, but to double down in your efforts. Otherwise you’ll end up like America. Will America get back out of it? Certainly. Their being relegated away from 1st Rank will get them going again. It’s like a sports team that spends too much time at the top. It’s more difficult to stay at the top than achieve the top (I know it’s a cliche, but it’s true). Things happen in waves, nobody stays at the top, everyone eventually goes down a little. But the temporary set-back can serve as a basis for an awesome comeback. Sometimes sports teams that spent a season at lower ranks, comes back even stronger than before. Their down-ranking served as a wake-up call. Whether that will happen to America remains to be seen in the coming years.