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Wow. Bara wow.

Nobody has shown this to better effect than the Chinese when it comes to digital services. China is the only great power with real independence in the digital realm, and they acquired that independence by shamelessly embracing tech protectionism.

Europeans might look at the outcome of that embrace with horror, and rightly so. China has used its digital sovereignty to institute an authoritarian surveillance and censorship state that no freedom-loving person could ever cheer for. But there’s no denying its unique effectiveness in establishing an internal order built on Chinese norms and laws, however flawed to our eyes (and objective notions of freedom).

Europe should learn from this. Like we’d learn from any foreign power in a power struggle when trying to decide how to come out ahead in the next round.

David Heinemeier Hansson, “European Digital Sovereignty“, 9 december 2022