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The Advantage of Not Being Part of a Multinational Corporation

Another day, another multinational corporation scrubbing its publications for any statements that could irk the Chinese government:

On GQ’s own website something was different [about their “worst-dressed” list] The “top 10” list had become a “top 8”. Missing were two individuals: China’s president Xi Jingping and King of Thailand Maha Vajiralongkorn.

According to sources at Condé Nast, GQ’s parent company, the controversial world leaders had been removed after management got wind of who was on the list.

You know how twice a year, we at NR ask you for money? We don’t really like asking, you don’t really like being asked, but it’s necessary to keep the ship sailing, and we all muddle through the best we can. But there’s one gargantuan upside to this method of keeping the lights on, and it’s that none of us at National Review have ever heard or will hear from a publisher or editor, “you can’t write that, because it would louse up all of our merchandise sales in the Chinese market.”

The only Lowry jerseys being sold in Beijing stores are for Kyle, not Rich. There are no National Review-branded sneakers being made in China. We don’t play exhibition games against the People’s Daily. And if you come to our offices with a “Free Hong Kong” banner and start chanting slogans of support, the only way you’ll be silenced is when Jay Nordlinger runs to stand next to you and chants even louder.

Independence has its costs . . . but also its benefits.

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