BEIJING, Jan. 19 (Xinhua) -- "If all you have is a hammer, everything looks like a nail," says an American proverb. Protectionism is a vivid example of this: with a protectionist mentality, everyone outside the country seems like an enemy.
Protectionist tricks played by the United States on China just get crazier and crazier. From reanimating near-dead trade remedies that haven't been thought of, let alone used, for years, to setting obstacles for Chinese investment, to listing Chinese companies as notorious counterfeiters, the stupidity just keeps on coming.
With almost no growth to speak of, instead of reflecting on its own dinosaur economic structure, the United States has chosen to build a wall to trade, nailing Sino-U.S. trade and economic relations with its toy hammer. Definitely unwise, but not unexpected.
While globalization and free trade are the latest fashion, the United States constantly resorts to the trade remedy investigations, and demonizes Chinese investment. Sooner or later, the hammer of protectionism will bash the U.S. thumb.
Whether in investment or cooperation, the best choice is to follow the market rules. However, the United States is always bleating about national security while force-feeding its rather overcooked ideas of fairness, freedom and democracy to the rest of the world. It is the greatest of ironies that the champion of fair competition is now bringing such shame to its so-called democracy, once thought of as "liberal."
Protectionism won't solve anything. It may even put the country itself in a dilemma. For example, when the Hoover administration raised import taxes on raw materials via the Smoot-Hawley Tariff Act in 1960 , it led to a sharp drop in exports, and thereupon into the Great Depression.
The United States has great advantages in service industries, so the nails it hits on Sino-U.S. trade will eventually lead to broken fingers, so why not drop the hammer?