President Chris opened the meeting at 12:05 pm and Ralph led us in the Pledge & Prayer.
ATTENDANCE: A total of 28 people attended virtually via phone and/or video.  We had one guest - Judy Jodice, spouse of Ralph Jodice.
Chris - Kevin Clark has been approved by the Board as a new member of Rotary.  His induction will be scheduled in the near future.
Terry - Former Rotarian Steven Harner is receiving treatment for a serious illness.  He is in good spirits and has a positive outlook especially since they diagnosed it in the early stages.  If you are so inclined, you can send a card to him at : 154 Northview Dr, Hanover, Pa , 17331  or call at 717-632-4415.
PROGRAM: Paul Berg - The Challenges of China;  and Commentary from Ralph Jodice
Following are some of the things we learned about the US modern relationship with China; causes for changes in that relationship, and what we can do as private citizens.
- Beginning of the modern relationship with China started when President Nixon and Secretary of State Kissinger open formal relationships with China.  The intent was to bring China into the world community of major nations as a responsible player; help them establish a more stable government and become more prosperous. In doing so perhaps they would become more capitalistic and also develop a better record on human rights with their population.
- Early results were that China did open up more economically, the middle class increased and became more prosperous as trade deals were made, and Chinese students came to our colleges and universities to be educated.
- However in the long term things didn't turn out as we had hoped.  They adopted their own brand of capitalism with the Communist party firmly holding power and the government structuring lopsided trade deals favoring their own country.  They also became a world power to be reckoned with as their prosperity grew.
- Democracy provides shock absorbers to a country to deal with hard times but a totalitarian system does not have these built-in checks and balances.  Thus their only option is to "tighten down the screws" in order to maintain control.
- China recognizes that they have some "bumps" to deal with as they continue to change so they have placed "hard liners" in charge like the current administration.  Some of the bumps include real estate, stock market, and banking system that are over-valued; the population is aging and there aren't enough younger people working to support them; their growth relied on exports and cheap labor and this is changing because they have to pay their workers more; and they have very few sources of energy of their own.
- These "hardliners give the U.S. problems such as - stealing our technology and that of other countries, spying, unfair trade policies, and increased human rights violations.  They try to suppress various religions in horrible ways much of which includes muslims.  They have to walk a fine line so as not to offend muslim countries who have much energy.  There is also an increase in slave labor.
- The U.S. options are few but could take the form of sanctions, restructured trade policies, and publicizing their human rights practices and faulty business practices to the rest of the world.  China wants desperately to be seen in a positive light by the rest of the world community.
- What we can do as individual citizens:
    . writing to the media and our representatives about our concerns when we 
    . encourage politicians to pass measures that may curb the negative behaviors of the Chinese gov't
    . there are many Chinese students here.  We should reach out them to show them what we as a people are really like and what we as a culture are like.  They live "in a bubble" created by their Gov't and do not have a realistic idea of what lives are like and who we are.
    . provide insights into our culture by inviting Chinese business partners to spend time with our families, go to our church, show them what life is really like in a democracy
Ralph echoed the points that Paul made and added:
 - one of China's biggest concerns is the growing disparity between the "haves" and "have nots".  Large segments of the population have not shared in the prosperity and the larger that gap the more potential there is for people to become unsettled.
- China has dramatically increased it's military capabilities in all areas especially naval and air power by devoting 17% of their GDP to the effort.  They don't want an all out war with the U.S. but they are looking for ways to "bloody our noses" and make us look bad and weak.
- They do not understand how to be an international stake holder.
NEXT WEEKS PROGRAM:  Chad Martin, Police Chief of Hanover Borough