It's time to start getting tough on Beijing.

No, this is not a rant about China's alleged lack of human rights. When China has something as evil as Abu Ghraib and Bagram we might have a right to complain. Nor am I complaining about China's lack of something called democracy. (Would China's one-child policy have survived in a democracy?)

No, where China is at fault is in a very different area. It complains bitterly about Western, U.S. mainly, tariff/subsidy protectionism. But China itself indulges in a much worse kind of protectionism — exchange rate protectionism. If China's currency is undervalued by around 20 percent, as many estimate, that is equal to a 20 percent tariff on all goods entering China, and a 20 percent subsidy for all exports. Tariff/subsidy protectionism in the West never gets as wild as this.