I am not a fan of Google. They scare me with their reach and ability to monopolize the flow of information. But, good for them on this issue!
This is a move more companies should make. And yes, it just means that it is harder for the citizens of the PRC to get actual information and not Baidu propaganda. However, the situation will never change until the people in China want it to change. If it gets so that the business in China cannot access their customers or markets then the government will have relax the censorship rules.
Rio Tinto should say: "Sorry President Hu, asking about the production capacity of a private company is not a matter of national security and isn’t spying. If you are going to arrest our employees for asking basic business questions then we won't play. Mine your own iron ore from your own damn mine; assuming you can keep them from caving in.
I don't think the Chinese realize how evil they look to most people who are not from China. It isn't just the government. The Chinese are the only people I know of who will enslave their others of their own nationality. If you go into a large Chinese restaurant in the US or Europe then employees who are not family members are illegal’s who live in dormitories and are paid less than 1/2 minimum wage. I grew up in an area of Texas that was heavily Hispanic. The local Hispanics didn't hire "Wet-backs" and generally despised them as being the criminal element of Mexican society. However, they didn't go out of their way to enslave them either. We did hire migrant workers, often Hispanics to help on the farm but we didn't treat them as slaves. The propensity of the Chinese to take advantage of other Chinese is absolutely astounding.
The stereotype of the Ugly American tourist is often over played but has some at least mythological basis in actual behavior. The ugly Chinese has overtaken the US in this area. Not even other Chinese like the mainland tourist. They'll take their money but are glad when they leave. Hong Kongers used to snicker at the boys from up North. They were naive and innocent country bumpkins. Now they all dress like gangsters, smoke like freight trains and spit and curse and go out of their way to insult and throw their money around.
Notice, I believe that the corruption in the government goes hand in hand with the corruption of the individual. The PRC will never clean up the corruption in the government until it cleans up the corruption in its society.
I think I will go make a search using Google and click on a couple of adds.
Until Next Time
The Blogger who still thinks that in 15 years the PRC will be freer tha Obama's US