Friday, September 01, 2006

Can Stop
A Nuclear Iran

From All Things Beautiful:

Well there's a title you don't read every day! What's the connection? Simple, tell China, that Wal-Mart will shift merchandise production to competing low-cost manufacturing countries, if it doesn't support a UNSC resolution, stopping Iran from going nuclear. After all, a nuclear Holocaust is also bad for business in China.

Make no mistake, Wal-Mart has that kind of purchasing power: Over 10% of all Chinese exports to the U.S. are bought by Wal-Mart, that's well over $20 billion.

"More than 70 per cent of the products sold at Wal-Mart are made in China. If Wal-Mart were a separate nation, it would rank as China’s fifth-largest export market, ahead of Germany and Britain."

The good news is, the threat would remain just that, for China would yield, we'd continue saving $100 billion each year and the Mullahcracy would have to abandon their expansionist ambitions, which they are planning to extort through nuclear blackmail. There was a time, when 'corporate' diplomacy supported the greater good.

Actually, I don't think this would work as well as All Things Beautiful thinks it would work. It would be rather easy for China to simply call the bluff. A business is dependent on its suppliers to stay in business, just as much as the supplier is dependent on the buyer.

China delivers for Wal-Mart. China delivers because it is efficient. Many of the other "competing low-cost manufacturing countries" are less successful precisely because their track record on deliver is not as good as that of China.

However, this is not to dismiss the idea outright. Certainly, it is the foundation of a very good idea. During the course of WWII America was fully mobilized in its war efforts. This means there was maximum open cooperation between all components of government and the business world. If government asked a manufacturing plant to retool to make bombs, for instance, they say, "How big an explosion do you want?"

We are not fully mobilized as a nation at this time. If this war gets worse, as I fully expect it will, then there is the likelihood that we will once again go into full-mobilization mode. At that point, the government could sit down with a company like Wal-Mart and strategize on how to best beat our enemies.

For the government to make such a request at this point would be considered an overstepping of authority. And, until the government had such authority, Wal-Mart will have no reason to take such a risk.