Four U.S. Congressmen have accused Apple of being “a pawn in China’s malfeasance” by risking users privacy in the CCP-controlled country.
The letter to Apple CEO Tim Cook from representatives Ken Buck (R-CO), Scott Fitzgerald (R-WI), Burgess Owens (R-UT), and Dan Bishop (R-NC) reads as follows:
Dear Mr. Cook,
Based on recently reported information, we write to urge Apple to reassess its business practices in China and with the Chinese government.
Recently, you have touted your company’s prioritization of Apple users’ control over their data. However, your company’s disingenuous implementation of these rights is striking. Apple users in China have zero protections against the Chinese government’s use of their data stored by the company, and instead of working to counter this problematic reality, Apple continues to concede to the Chinese government’s demands.
While a company may engage in problematic marketplaces so that they have a seat at the table and are positioned to leverage their market influence to advance user privacy and human rights, this is not the reality in this situation. In fact, as your company has compromised its users and supply chains in China, Apple has entwined itself with the very rights abuses it claims to oppose. Apple’s gradual and near-total capitulation to the communist regime in China in its storage of user data under the CCP’s express legal jurisdiction, censorship of its App Store in China, and in other areas is confounding.
On their face, Apple’s corporate values bolster human rights and user privacy, going so far as to affirm, “Privacy is a fundamental human right.” Unfortunately, the company’s systemic failure to uphold these values in its dealings with China contradict this narrative.
Once again, we urge you to consider Apple’s position as a pawn in China’s malfeasance and take the necessary actions to separate your company from the Chinese government’s abuses of its people, international peace and stability, and democratic principles of freedom and equality.
Ken Buck, Scott Fitzgerald, Burgess Owens, Dan Bishop
— Rep. Ken Buck (@RepKenBuck) May 20, 2021
MacDailyNews Take: Again, as we’ve said for years now, for better and worse, Apple is wedded to China. It will take many years to even begin to extricate itself from this relationship, at least the the point where the company has some meaningful leverage that the CCP understands.
This situation has been building for years and, for the foreseeable future, will continue to get worse for Apple, not better.
There exists a dichotomy that screams hypocrisy that is impossible to overlook:
Apple CEO Tim Cook, winner of the Robert F. Kennedy Human Rights’ 2015 Ripple of Hope Award for “his lifelong commitment to human rights,” who subsequently took a place on the board Robert F. Kennedy Human Rights the following year, and winner of Newseum’s 2017 Free Expression Award in the Free Speech category, no less also aids and abets China’s commitment to violating human rights with serial regularity.
Two phrases immediately spring to mind:
• Do as I say, not as I do.
• Talking the talk, but not walking the walk.
Accepting awards, plaudits, and board positions for “free speech” and “human rights” while banning publications and protest apps are tough actions to reconcile due to their diametrically opposed nature.
For how long can Tim Cook, and by extension, Apple, get away with positioning themselves as the world’s white knight while kowtowing to every whim of the Chinese authoritarian socialist censors?
China is critical for Apple in every way from sales to product assembly, so Apple continues to kowtow to China. With Apple’s strong stance – in other places of the world – on users’ rights and privacy, it’s a bad look for the company and a tough tightrope that Tim Cook is trying to walk. — MacDailyNews, July 29, 2017