Tawain produces over 60% of the worlds semiconductors, and over 90% of the world’s most advanced semiconductors.[1] Which means it is not exaggeration to say that the Western world would be crippled if it lost access to this vital source of technology. These are the chips that are in every computer device from laptops, to mobile phones, medical equipment, cars, and more. The chances are you are reading this on a device that was made with a computer chip that was developed in Taiwan.

This is a big part of the reason why the United States is seeking to retain dominance of the independent leaning island, and why it is willing to threaten China with a military response if China seeks to rush for full reunification of Taiwan with the mainland. China on the other hand, historically, has always considered disunity in its nation as the biggest threat to its peace and prosperity, which is the main motivation for it to want to reunify with the technologically advanced island. The Chinese people feel at threat when they are not united. Complete dominance over the world’s computer market would be a powerful side benefit of this reunification.

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So, you might think, well there is a really simple solution to this, why doesn’t the United States just use its vast wealth, industrial capacity, technological know how and educated citisenship, to invest in making themselves a global leader in chip production again. Well, they are trying, but a pernicious force is undermining their efforts; diversity requirements.

We read in the Daily Mail, that these diversity requirements are so onerous that they are forcing companies which produce semiconductors to seek better conditions for their factories in other countries,

“Top microchip makers are postponing their expansion into the U.S. and setting up shop in Israel and Russia due to equity caveats that are required for them to receive grants from the U.S. government.

The Biden administration promised earlier this year that they would be handing out $39 billion in grants to encourage semiconductor manufacturing in the U.S.

Shortly after the announcement however, Intel announced they would be holding off on their Columbus factory, while Samsung also delayed their facility in Texas.

Despite the billions in subsidies, two experts believe the tech companies’ decision to back out of building manufacturing facilities in the U.S. stems from the diversity, equity and inclusion policy.

In an opinion piece for The Hill, CEO of Strive Asset Management Matt Cole and head of research at the company, Chris Nicholson, say the subsidies are so ‘loaded with DEI that it can’t move.’

The pair say that Intel has now built manufacturing plants in Poland and Israel, meaning they would rather deal with threat of Hamas rockets and Russian aggression than the government’s DEI regime…

…In their piece, Cole and Nicholson said that part of the CHIPS money calls for the creation of Chief Diversity Officers and helping minority groups.”[2]

The title of the article itself is pretty provocative, stating that Biden’s DEI requirements are worse than Hamas. Not in reality of course, but simply from the perspective that some of these companies would rather function in countries where incoming rocket fire is a real possibility, than wade through the diversity minefield that comes with the American government’s grants.

Just take a moment to consider how serious a problem this is. America cannot afford to lose access to Taiwan, without being fully chip independent itself. Therefore, if it wants to maintain its military dominance it has to become increasingly aggressive towards China in the South Pacific region, so it can maintain this access. This is why the United States has so militarised the region, it relies on this, and many other aspects of trade in Asia for its dominance in the world. But because of its own self-retarding diversity policies, it is not capable of creating its own re-energised semiconductor sector. So, what we are saying here is the diversity initiatives might be a major factor in a possible war with China. They at the very least make it more likely.

Another source explains why this is causing such an issue,

“The law contains 19 sections promoting DEI initiatives like prioritising grants for “minority-serving institutions” and mandating plans to boost the participation of “underrepresented” groups in the semiconductor workforce.

Cole and Nicholson argue these DEI strings have significantly slowed the disbursement of CHIPS money as chipmakers must clear complicated bureaucratic hurdles. TSMC, for example, had to agree to rely more on local Arizona workers rather than skilled employees from Taiwan after backlash.

The authors contend national security is being endangered by subordinating semiconductor supremacy to DEI objectives. While the US pushes to diversify the chip workforce, strategic rivals like China are rapidly expanding military capabilities and advanced manufacturing.

Commerce Secretary Gina Raimondo has defended prioritising an inclusive semiconductor pipeline, recently launching training at historically Black colleges funded by CHIPS grants. However, critics insist DEI compromises are allowing America to fall behind adversaries laser-focused on chip dominance over ideological aims.”[3]

The Unlucky Country - Zimmermann & Moens

Rather than being able to just get on with the job of making these chips so that the US can be more independent in this field, companies are being forced to fill quotas, align with union demands for who can be employed and many other roadblocks to getting these factories running. Another expert noted that these companies would be built, but they would just be built slower, less efficient, and less capable of advanced chip production because of all of these diversity regulatory requirements.[4] It is incredible, isn’t it. Some of us have warned about the danger of this push for diversity for years, and now we are reaping the fruit of these terrible policies, including the possibility of war. 

It is not exaggeration that this could make war with China more possible. America is putting more and more pressure on Taiwan to sure up its independence from China, and China sees this as an act of aggression on their nation. While reunification for cultural reasons is China’s main motivation for incorporating Taiwan back into the fold, China also cannot afford to lose access to Taiwan’s technology base,

“China is, in fact, strategically preparing for this scenario more than people realise. First, a potential war scenario is a critical factor in the direction the country’s economy is taking. China is pursuing an increasingly massive indigenisation drive for chips, technological supply chains and other critical goods, seeking to phase out the need for foreign imports. The US has long sought to use the semiconductor supply chain, and China’s dependence on Taiwan for a great deal of that chain, as a strategic chokepoint in order to cripple China’s economic and military development. Beijing has been investing aggressively to try and break out of this containment and wean itself off such dependency as fast as possible, all while simultaneously seeking to advance its own capabilities.

Secondly, China has long been preparing for the possibility that the US will try and impose a full-blown naval embargo on it, as unlikely as this may be. The Pentagon has been tasked with preparing a study on how such an embargo would be possible. The goal, of course, would be to cripple China militarily by depriving it of access to foreign fuel supplies, again attempting to use its lack of energy independence, owing to its population size as another chokepoint. Beijing’s biggest response to this has been to build the Belt and Road initiative, and use strategic partners such as Pakistan to create alternative maritime and commercial routes which effectively avoid its naval peripheral regions that have been increasingly militarised by the US. This also includes increasing strategic and energy integration with Russia.

When these things are viewed in context, China is certainly preparing for the contingency of a war, as well as laying down the economic adjustments that would be needed in such a scenario. However, it also remains true that at this point in time, Xi Jinping has not given up on diplomacy, and as much as he retains an incentive to economically develop the country through integration with Western markets, he is not likely to take such a massive decision. However, we must be honest that with the way the world is changing, this door is increasingly closing, and it is obvious to most people that on the current trajectory, Taiwan has absolutely no interest whatsoever in unification. So what options does China have left with Taipei? It may be damned if it does and damned if it doesn’t.”[5]

Is it not remarkable that this situation could have been completely avoided if America had not outsourced its chip building technology in the first place. The greed of western corporate capitalists to turn third world countries into cheap labour for their products has created a situation where now the most powerful nation in the world feels that it may need to go to war with a country that it helped develop this level of power and wealth and technology in the first place? At multiple levels the drive for globalisation and diversity are responsible for pushing the world towards this new unnecessary war. Well, that and the old things like avarice and the quest for power and dominance as well of course.

Those who pushed for the offshoring of manufacturing have caused two major problems for the West; they have weakened our own manufacturing base, making us vulnerable to broken supply chains in the event of war, and they have made the countries which could go to war with us far, far more powerful than they once were. Diversity really is a society killer in more ways than one. It is shame that we had to learn this lesson again the hard way as a society.

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Matthew Littlefield writes to think through some of the current issues facing society, the Church and whatever else comes to mind that might be interesting to process. Matt's focus is usually historical or scriptural, though he will address current issues from time to time as well. He is a co-author of The Ezekiel Declaration and the book, Defending Conscience, How Baptists reminded the Church to defy tyranny. He blogs most days at YoungGospelMinister.blogspot.com.

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