Freedom of Speech

Just read it.

Ah, the sweet scent of reform.

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Richard Burger is the author of Behind the Red Door: Sex in China, an exploration of China's sexual revolution and its clash with traditional Chinese values.

The Discussion: 56 Comments

It’s always the same throughout recent history: “Let them speak until it bites you in the ass. Then let the beatdown begin…”

June 19, 2007 @ 6:10 pm | Comment

Chinee, in China maybe, but in many other countries there isn’t much that governments can do about it.

This is one of the problems in China – the government can pertty much do as it pleases in any sphere of life, and there’s no one to hold it to account.

June 19, 2007 @ 7:58 pm | Comment

The difference between China and US is Macro-management vs. Micro-management in people’s thought. This is a prime example.

I don’t think it’s wise for Chinese government to do so anyway.

CCP may be able to delete posts, but so what? They cannot prevent people from worrying about it, talking about it and resenting it. People don’t really believe what CCP say and don’t want CCP have a say on their mind.

The obvious contrast is here in US. Most people do believe whatever the major media drum up to. Wen-Hoo Lee’s case, the selling of Iraq war, just to name a few. In the months leading to the Iraq war, many of my friends, even though most of them are are Democrats and liberal, believed in the rationale of the war Bush sold to them and were ready to argue with me with the talkpoints Bush gave.

Why is the case? The US press gained trust of people by telling truth most of the time and the government generally don’t censor press. What they do is selectively report the stories, using the angles that fit their agenda. US people, though skeptical about the government, have nearly blind trust in the system, believing that they are fed with FAIR AND BALANCED news. When LIES are really needed, this become very convenient and effective.

In contrast, CCP tried hard to micromanage press and people’s thinking. This become notorious and ineffective.

June 20, 2007 @ 12:27 am | Comment

Frank,

How do you explain this?

http://tinyurl.com/323m39

You can take a look at my post before that one, also, since you made a nice summary here of the argument I addressed there.

June 20, 2007 @ 1:31 am | Comment

88,

Thanks for your link. However, I think the “trust” is different from successful misinformation campaign.

The trust in that survy, I believe, is the belief that the government in general, would make good judgements on policy, will further the intrest of the country and its people. As a matter of fact, the CCP government has a reasonably good track record in the past couple decades, despite small and big mistakes here and there, despite being an authoritarian government. People have got much better life (especially the people they surveyed). I believe that’s the reason of this trust. I’d say nationalism also plays a significant role here.

However, CCP is far less successful in making people believing that they are honest and forthcoming, especially facing some embarassments or crisis. If you ask some Chinese whether they trust the government in the recent Shanxi slavery scandal, or the SARS scare couple years ago, I’d say much fewer people would say they trust the government.

June 20, 2007 @ 3:16 am | Comment

In US case, the survey is in 2007. Try one in 2003 before the war.

In Chinese case, I do not think the people in the interview will give you an honest answer.

June 20, 2007 @ 3:25 am | Comment

Frank,

Actually I think Iraq and Wen Ho Lee are not good examples, because they are FOREIGN to the American public. Maybe Wen Ho Lee is a US citizen, but he is still “foreign” in the subconsciousness of many Americans. People may want to believe his Chinese/Taiwanese origin did not play a role here, but they will have a very hard time actually arguing that his ethnicity was not a factor. I may be sidetracking now, but my point is that free press has never known to be impartial in conflicts or rivalry when one party is not a part of the intended readership. One fact that has been consistently overlooked by Westerners in the discussion of the current kiln scandal is that the news was first broken by media of the Henan province. The brutality happened in Shanxi province and peasants from Henan were brutalized, but it took journalists from Henan to travel there and uncover it. Is there any incentive for the Shanxi media to break the news? No. Of course one can explain this by pointing out that the media is controlled by the provincial party boss, but I feel there is something more profound. Not only the officials and the local media were corrupt and aloof, common villagers, who were well aware of the slavery, were heartlessly indifferent and silent. What is missing here? Compassion.

I am not denying that the government censorship has made such crimes unchecked, but in this particular case, it also takes a glaring lack of compassion for fellow human beings to go to such extremity. Democratic instruments are wonderful to address corruption and inequality inside a constituency, but would a free press of Shanxi be enthusiastic about the plight of slave labors from other provinces? Doubtful. That’s also how Iraq and Wen Ho Lee happened. That’s why most Chinese writers are indignant about the deliberately skewed coverage of China by the mainstream American media. Is there still slavery in the US? A quick answer is no. But do Americans care about the substandard living and working conditions of illegal immigrants? Not really. Actually, it is the grass-root opposition that stalled the reform of immigration law. Lower incomers do not like immigrants to compete with them for jobs; employers do not like to be hampered by bureaucracy and the increased cost associated with the application procedure; die-hard conservatives do not like any mass immigration no matter what. Illegal immigrants are still roaming around taking menial jobs, because their labor is needed, but do Americans really care about them? Generally, no.

I may sound sidetracking again. Let me getting back to the topic by asking: Why Shanxi? Will such slavery take place in Beijing or Shanghai or the Pearl River Delta? I mean slavery, not those sweatshops where workers work in dire conditions but still are NOT OWNED by the boss in any way. All these provinces are supposed to be in the same political system, right? So why is the difference? What makes people more humane?

June 20, 2007 @ 5:04 am | Comment

Richard,

Didn’t you passionately make an argument that since this site is a private site, its admins can delete whatever comments and ban whomever? I fully agree with you, BTW.

Let’s be consistent here. Netease is a private site, much like yours, other than its market value is north of US$2B.

Also I am reasonably certain that the following is speculation instead of a known fact:

To insure that the original post was not axed, the Netease editors had no choice but to carefully prune so-called extreme or sensitive comments – for Big Brother is watching you!

June 20, 2007 @ 8:09 am | Comment

The difference Richard trims his blog based on his ideals, not some chain smoking, bad comb-over sporting official leaning over him.

June 20, 2007 @ 8:34 am | Comment

Jxie, you are a really smart guy and I respect you. I have to ask honestly, do you truly see a parallel between the owner of a blog setting up his own comments policy – whether to have coments at all, and if so how to manage them – and an outside force like the government butting in and forcing that blogger to delete all his comments? I am truly curious about your response and look forward to it.

June 20, 2007 @ 10:14 am | Comment

Richard, in Netease’s case, I highly doubt the government specifically asked them to remove certain comments. The government can’t simply be so omnipresent.

You can, however, make a decent case w.r.t. press freedom by looking into how to acquire and maintain an ICP (Internet Content Provider) license. Sites’ editorial & managemental preferences are just the wrong places to look.

June 20, 2007 @ 10:44 am | Comment

Jxie, with all due respect I think your reply is evasive. According to the article, the site proprietors went out of their way to manage the comments, but “Big Brother” interferred – whether that’s the government or some higher-up at Netease or whoever:

To insure that the original post was not axed, the Netease editors had no choice but to carefully prune so-called extreme or sensitive comments – for Big Brother is watching you! So there was quite a large difference between the true number of Netease comments and the total displayed.

You drew a parallel between the proprietors of Netease and myself, using the argument that we both have the right to run our sites as we see fit and manage comments as we choose. The Netease editors deleted comments to avoid having the piece axed, which is fine, necessary. But then Big Brother killed ALL comments, against the wishes of those editing the site. There is no analogy between that phenomenon and how I manage comments here. If I ever feel I have to delete, it is 100 percent my choice, with no outside influence or pressure. I pay for this site and maintain it, so I have authority over what goes on its pages. Just like the editors at Netease, setting their criteria for deleting comments that they knew would threaten their site. But there is no Big Brother who can ax comments here, only me. The Netease editors were frustrated in their efforts and were forced to edit their site in a way they didn’t want to. Someone outside of the editors imposed censorship and killed an entire thread. Do you really see that as akin to a blogger deciding to delete an abusive comment? Really?

June 20, 2007 @ 12:45 pm | Comment

Richard, like I said, I believe the original blogger (Xiong) was merely postulating instead of having some intimate knowledge on how Netease editing their comments (controlled by some government officials). I am so confident that specific bit (your quoted text) was made up, I am willing to give you 10:1 up to $1000 on that one.

Stop being so gullible and think it over. Netease is a US$2.2 billion company. Like they will share the inner working of their editing with a nobody blogger. Likely the blogger just saw the number of comments going down and let his imagination go wild. If I run Netease, and sp, snow and a few others go ape and start posting a large number of comments on my sites, I will delete them in a heartbeat.

June 20, 2007 @ 2:35 pm | Comment

There was a very instructional WaPo article about how the Chinese net censorship process actually works some months back – I think I blogged about it here. Some aspects of it are surprisingly low-tech. The case they used to illustrate it was the Freezing Point memo written by the editor (sorry, I don’t recall his name). The thing got out on the internet heading into a weekend, so no one caught it right away, and by the time the decision was made to censor it, the memo had been widely disseminated.

But the real point here is that if you crack down and crack down hard enough times, you don’t have to have a hard and fast rule about what is okay and what isn’t – in fact that’s one of the more interesting things about public discourse in China today – there are very few red lines but a lot of blurry ones that you can cross without knowing it. Maybe some other time or place it would have been okay, but not this time.

When authority is expressed in an arbitrary way, it can encourage the testing of boundaries – but more often, it makes people and companies – especially companies, with something to lose – err on the side of caution and self-censorship.

Deleting individual comments can be completely legitimate or it can be censorship, depending on the circumstances – but eliminating an entire comment thread? That strikes me as self-censorship at best.

So, no, JXie, I don’t see how your comparison holds.

June 20, 2007 @ 2:49 pm | Comment

Otherlisa, I see your and WaPo’s viewpoints, honestly. You see the deletion of some comments in Netease (or other Chinese sites) as out of fear of stepping over some apparent or blurry proverbial lines, instead out of sanctimony not unlike yall’s, “why the fuck you use my sites to 煽动颠覆国家政权, which is illegal in China?”

June 20, 2007 @ 3:20 pm | Comment

No, I see the deleting of an entire comment thread as evidence of self-censorship. As for the Freezing Point controversy, it’s much more substantive and illustrative an example, if you care to look it up.

June 20, 2007 @ 3:28 pm | Comment

And you know what? I really resent your name-calling. I’m probably one of the more “pro-China” Westerners posting on this site and I am about as far from a reflexive American nationalist as they come (one more Republican administration, and I’ll be an expat, that’s for sure).

But these kinds of specious arguments and false comparisons are making me crazy.

June 20, 2007 @ 3:34 pm | Comment

Lisa, this is what every thread here boils down to you. I’m really disappointed – I thought Jxie was above this sort of thing. I don’t delete any comments for differing opinions. None. If so, Jxie would be long gone. I only delete blatantly abusive comments and racist comments, and this happens very, very rarely. The Netease incident has nothing to do with deleting abusive comments – I appreciate the editors’ deletion of those types of comments. It was the decision to gag the thread, to destroy it, that’s what we are talking about. Not by the guys who deleted the abusive comments, but by a censor. There is nothing subtle about this distinction, but I don’t think Jxie will get it anytime soon.

I am really disappointed.

June 20, 2007 @ 4:18 pm | Comment

Yeah, Richard, me too. Plus the distorting of what I said. That’s also a bummer.

June 20, 2007 @ 4:42 pm | Comment

JXie: Sure, they might not “share the inner working of their editing with a nobody blogger,” but journalists share information with each other. Xiong Peiyun is with Window on the South magazine (their man in Paris) and is a well-known columnist for a number of papers. Whether he actually contacted the editors in this particular instance is certainly debatable, but I’d say the odds are certainly better than 10:1 that he knows what goes on behind the scenes.

Part of his point in the blog post linked here is that netizens are in some ways worse off in terms of freedom of speech than people who have a voice in the traditional media. If you read journalists’ blogs, you’ll often find them expressing frustration that the articles and columns that went out in print with no problem get rejected time and time again by automated keyword filters, or get pulled later by skittish web editors. (Though I suppose, if you wanted, you could argue that this showed that Sina et. al. have different editorial standards than mainstream commercial newspapers.)

June 20, 2007 @ 5:19 pm | Comment

First, posting or commenting on private web sites has nothing to do with freedom of speech. More than likely, it’s subject to the terms and agreements of the sites. Private web sites are private properties. I hope this point is self apparent and no need further discussion.

The contentious point is, the motive why those comments were deleted. Your assumption in the case of Netease seems to be out of fear — fear of crossing the lines, or in the case Xiong presents, controlled by the Big Brother. My contention is that it may actually be editorial or managemental preference.

Think about it, if I run this site, I will delete all posts by a few (you know who you are), but likely I will let Hong Xing stay. It’s just my preference that I will not impose on you. There have been enough commenters of Chinese origin passing by this site, to give you an idea that on many things, the majority of the Chinese may disagree with you, without the burden of government control or fear.

June 20, 2007 @ 8:56 pm | Comment

:::First, posting or commenting on private web sites has nothing to do with freedom of speech.:::

Actually according to the latest policy initiatives from the MII, this statement is incorrect.

June 20, 2007 @ 9:50 pm | Comment

“First, posting or commenting on private web sites has nothing to do with freedom of speech.”

It does when that web site happens to be owned and operated by people smack-dab in the middle of a Free Speech wasteland. So no, if North Koreans were even allowed to use the Internet, my ‘free decision’ to erase all those anti-Kim Jong Ill comments on my blog wouldn’t be a ‘free decision.’ Even if the government hasn’t officially knocked on my door….yet.

I would think [i]this[/i] point would be self-apparent and in no need of further discussion.

Honestly, this entire spectacle, the dodging and the sophistry, here and in other posts, is making me a bit sick. Is this really what Chinese ‘patriotism’ amounts to? Heroically defending the government from the charge that it should stop treating you like a stupid, ignorant child whose thoughts must be policed to keep you from being dangerous? Especially ironic given that the blog you choose to comment on is likely banned on the Mainland.

This blog is an entertaining read, but half the time the comments section reminds me of that old Onion article, “Chinese Rockers Hold Benefit for Oppression.”

http://www.theonion.com/content/node/39116

June 20, 2007 @ 10:12 pm | Comment

please go observe one American’s fight for his rights in Sina forum: http://bbs.news.sina.com.cn/?h=/g_forum/00/04/00/view.php%3Ffid%3D36646%26tbid%3D3861&g=1&n=1
go to the last couple pages of this thread.
His ID has been banned for more than 90 times in Sina forum, and he is putting up a protest there right now.

June 20, 2007 @ 11:25 pm | Comment

“First, posting or commenting on private web sites has nothing to do with freedom of speech.”

How long have you been a party member?

June 20, 2007 @ 11:29 pm | Comment

“My contention is that it may actually be editorial or managemental preference.”

Would that be an editorial or managemental preference to stay legal, in Nanny’s good books, and generally not attract any undue attention from the censors?

June 21, 2007 @ 1:12 pm | Comment

@Brgyags
so it’s not a problem with institutional structures and unchecked power but a problem with morals.
Very confucian indeed.

June 21, 2007 @ 5:37 pm | Comment

The arguements of JXie, Brygyags, et al, all can be seen as racism.

One way to look at it is that they don’t believe Chinese people are smart enough and responsible enough to have free access to information and to choose their own leaders as is done in the west.

June 21, 2007 @ 6:58 pm | Comment

Chriswaugh_bj, in that case for the sake of this thread, it should be considered out of fear of crossing the lines. But can you see the possibility of other motives, such as directing the limited resources (admin, server, storage, bandwidth, etc.) to more productive places?

June 21, 2007 @ 10:16 pm | Comment

@Brgyags
so it’s not a problem with institutional structures and unchecked power but a problem with morals.
Very confucian indeed. – shulan

It is easy to end a discussion by labeling people. It is also not difficult to blame the government, although you have every right to do so and the government does deserve it. But why does it hurt to appeal for compassion? Democracy is not going to make people considerate, compassionate and humane. In contrast, it may bring out the worst. Look at Russia and former Yugoslavia of 1990s. Look at Iraq of today.

June 21, 2007 @ 10:46 pm | Comment

“Budda”,

One word: huh? How did you get that?

But speaking of racism and things done in the west. Let me give you one of my own eureka moments.

I was in a casual conversation with some whites, blacks, mixes (morenos, they call Halle Berrys there mixes, not blacks) in Brazil, and talked about the great Brazilian football (the game actually played with feet) players.

People were making statements such as that Kaka was a more efficient player because he was white and Ronaldindo was flashier because he was black. My initial reaction was WOW. What a bunch of racist mofos these people are. It came to me later that only because Brazil is quite possibly the most racially tolerant country in the world, historically and now, people freely speak that way only because they don’t have all the historical baggages, and people rarely are offended.

We are all on our own paths to achieve a better tomorrow. If you have god complex, go play with other weaker nations such as Iraq and let other people die for it.

June 21, 2007 @ 10:47 pm | Comment

I believe that people who make the policy to block internet connection in CCP are very stupid.

Especially when they block all the adult websites. I understand parents have concerns and the teenager’s sex is already a messy in China. But the free access to sex website should not be blocked for that reason.

June 21, 2007 @ 11:36 pm | Comment

Btw, there really should be some edit functions available to poster, so I can correct the mistakes in my post.

June 21, 2007 @ 11:40 pm | Comment

“One way to look at it is that they don’t believe Chinese people are smart enough and responsible enough to have free access to information and to choose their own leaders as is done in the west.”

It’s more like they know “the West” is too stupid to elect competent leaders; i.e George Bush. Or Hitler, lol.

Does anyone know how internet censorship is progressing at the moment? Getting worse?

June 22, 2007 @ 3:28 am | Comment

Jxie,

I don’t understand how you can not know that there is “political ” censorship by “big brother” in China.

You can check out: http://cyber.law.harvard.edu/filtering/china/

where you will get an idea of how it works. Theres so much subject matter that BB doesnt want discussed and if they allow discussion, is has to be in a certain line of thinking that the CCP doesnt feel threatened by.

As I understand thats how the CCP has developped a “unified China” where people accept the CCP, not based on the merit of their governing. SO I think thats the goal of the censorship.

J, maybe you disagree with my understanding, thats fine , but, you said if you had a thing you wold block me out

but that would not have a benefit. WHat good is it to surround yourself with only people who agree with you? I think we should be able to disagree and not censor eachother or hold opinions against eachother…

There are certain things however that are not opinion and are facts, so when there are folks who try to convince others that the CCP does not censor people, threaten their businesses and their lives through opressive and questionable “laws”, well why do you do that? Don’t you know its true, if you dont know, I dont blame you , you must be in the bubble of information blockage.

June 22, 2007 @ 7:59 am | Comment

“We are all on our own paths to achieve a better tomorrow.”

Yes, we do. And some of those paths to achieve a better tommorow are pathetically stupid, resulting instead in a pretty lousy tommorow.

Keeping your population ignorant of the real world and contrary opinions for the sake of ‘stability’ and ‘harmony’ falls neatly into that category. Please don’t give me this cultural relativism crap; some things are universally idiotic, regardless of whether they happen in Beijing or Belgium.

June 22, 2007 @ 9:21 am | Comment

I really wish we could edit comments. That should be ‘Yes, we ARE.’ Meh.

June 22, 2007 @ 10:05 am | Comment

I Believe Freedom of Speech is Not Important At All

When Rightists and Democracy Lovers say that China is not as a great country as the US, their most powerful weapon is that “China’s freedom of speech is not as open as that of USA and Japan”. They say “Americans can make movies that curse at the President, Americans can go on the streets and protests, etc etc.” I do not dispute what they say. In fact, I want to applause and agree with those claims. But this post wants say that: Freedom of speech is not important at all.

Example, when I was young, I used to spend time in my old hometown in China’s villages. During Chinese New Year, the village people kill a few of their pigs or chickens or lambs to make the New Year’s meal better. I used to watch my grandfather’s family take out a pig from their pigsty, and tie it all up, and pierce a pair of scissors into the pig’s belly. The pig would scream disparately before being gutted, and that scream was especially exciting to listen to. Thinking back today, I think that scream is just the pig’s way to “protest”, and in today’s words, that scream is that pig’s way to express a difference of opinion. Your opinion is that “I want to kill you for dinner
. The pig is saying “I don’t want to be killed please.” Of course, when the pig was screaming, the butcher did not try to silence it, the butcher gave the pig total freedom of speech, let it scream all it wants. But will that scream stop the pig being gutted and placed on our dinner table? Of course not, every time, that pair of scissors would pierce the pig’s belly no matter how loudly it screams. So can you claim that the butcher is very kind toward the pig by allowing it to scream? Of course not. The American government indeed allows a lot of such screams and loud voices, but they know its ok to let those people scream a bit, the ruling class won’t be affected by it anyway. Just like when I heard those pigs scream, I was never worried that the pig won’t be gutted.

But China’s situation is different. China is currently on the level of “the cries of a baby”. What does it mean? Well, when a baby cries to protest, the mother accepts the baby’s cries, and will try to please the baby and makes sure it stops crying. The Chinese government is often very easily embarrassed. So whenever there’s any crying, it will try to find ways to solve it. For example, when the SARS outbreak came, the public was crying, and immediately the Minister of Health was fired. What does that indicate? That indicates that China cares very much about the cries. When China had a large forest fire in 1987, the minister of forestry was fired immediately. America has 100 forest fires every year, when do you see anyone being punished or fired for it? When people in the world everywhere went to the streets to protest the Iraq War, the Bush administration went ahead anyway, but says very nicely “We respect their freedom to protest, unlike Saddam Hussein”. When the Iraq Prisoner abuse scandal came out, did we see any serious punishment to anyone? An American director made the movie >, and you say “Look how democratic we are!”. Well, I cannot help but laugh. Did it change any government’s policies, did it do anything other than satisfy some Bush haters and movie goers?

The American government does not care too much about cries, and that’s precisely why it is so “tolerant” about it. If I were asked to babysit someone’s kid, I would put on some loud music on my earphones and let the baby cry all it wants, even if the baby may be crying from some pain in the stomach. Can you praise me and say I’m very democratic because I give the baby the freedom to cry and protest?

That’s why I say that America is on the level of “pig’s scream”. China is on the level of “cries of a baby”. The pig’s scream is indeed much louder than the babies, but those screams will not help the pig’s fate of being gutted for dinner. To put it more concretely, the pig’s scream is not being fed back. And in engineering, a dynamic system’s power and performance does not depend on how much information it can handle, but on whether those information is properly being fed back. Otherwise, those information and the system is completely useless.

June 22, 2007 @ 11:39 am | Comment

Math:

No one spends so much time putting pretty flowers on manure. On the one hand you and others spout off about China’s 5000 years of blah blah blah and on the other hand talk about China as a newborn baby. Can’t have it both ways.

June 22, 2007 @ 1:42 pm | Comment

You know, I have been looking for a good, democratic babysitter for a while now. I think I found what I was looking for.

June 22, 2007 @ 2:10 pm | Comment

@Brgyags
Well, I would say it doesn’t hurt to appeal for compassion but it does hurt to rely solely on it. There will always be people who don’t care if others get hurt or cheat, or whatever, and unfortunately they are overrepresented in the political circles of most countries. That’s why you don’t want power concentrated in too view hands and why you need something like the free press and independent judges.
Then the chances of such things happening are minimized.

It’s really not difficult to blame the government, because in this and too many other cases the government is directly involved. I say it again, the problem surely are the morals of the people involved but the solution is better control of those in power, not calls for more compassion.

June 22, 2007 @ 5:05 pm | Comment

You have to love Math.
If you think it can’t get better he tops it again.

June 22, 2007 @ 7:24 pm | Comment

I’ll be blunt. I’m really, really, really starting to loathe this country and its “ma mu” attitude to damn near everything.

Sorry if that sounds harsh…I’m about as deep into the Cycle of Funk as one can get…

From N.Y. Times today:
http://tinyurl.com/337oy4

June 23, 2007 @ 3:46 pm | Comment

then i’ll be blunt. fuck off.

June 23, 2007 @ 4:22 pm | Comment

China’s plans for nuke power are already falling through. The country is so short of 1. water 2. clean water and 3. cool water that most nuke plants are on hold. In the NE, Beijing is dumping money into ad hoc desal plants to extract potable water from the Bohai because of the severe drought and salt water penetration of subsurface aquifers. Now one might think the North South water diversion project would be helpful until one realizes that this project would take away water needed to generate electricity at 3 gorges. If you don’t have enough pressure head, you can’t push those turbines very much.

China is dead of thirst. Expats should leave while they can.

June 23, 2007 @ 4:58 pm | Comment

“then i’ll be blunt. fuck off.”

I would be deeply offended and hurt by your words, dear pengyou, were if not for my 麻木 attitude. Born and bred in your dear, sweet, cultured Motherland,
as it is…

And Kebab Boy…the wife’s green card visa interview is next week. Delta is ready when I am! ;)

June 23, 2007 @ 5:18 pm | Comment

“America is pure garbage.”

“Do us a favor and get cancer or AIDs and die.”

“then i’ll be blunt. fuck off.”

Richard,
I by no means want to seem like the whiny boy on the playground, because I can sure as hell handle my own. I just wonder how you continue to allow personal comments like these from Ferins to appear on your site.

The America comment-check. I disparaged 5,000 years of history with my last comment. ;)

However, the others he makes are personal, childish and not in line with an intelligent discussion board. Save that for Sinocidal, Ferins, where there they’ll tear you apart…

June 23, 2007 @ 5:42 pm | Comment

Ferins, I know you are not a troll. I have never once even thought about deleting you. But you can’t talk to anyone here like that. I think you owe canrun an apology. Are you man enough to do it?

June 23, 2007 @ 6:11 pm | Comment

“Born and bred in your dear, sweet, cultured Motherland,
as it is…”

It’s a developing nation. Guess what, life is rough in developing nations. You can go live in comfort in the G8 or you can do something to change things for the better. Saying “I hate my life” and then sobbing about it really doesn’t do much for anyone.

“Save that for Sinocidal, Ferins, where there they’ll tear you apart…”

Haha, I’m very mild here.

“The America comment-check. I disparaged 5,000 years of history with my last comment. ;)

You seem to be just like those goofy sinocidal guys with the “5000 years of history” straw man. Deviate from the typical ivory-tower viewpoint of China or the developing world and suddenly you’re a CCP apologist with 5000 years of history who invented everything! Ohohoho. I’m so amused, lets chuckle at ourselves.

No, I’m not saying people should just resort to the “developing” excuse or the “we were victimized” excuse; but China has a habit of completely ignoring ‘your’ type of tone. Look at Wu Yi when she pimpslapped Paulson.

And I will never apologize. Because I’m in the CCP politburo a I don’t kowtow to Imperialists. But I will, however, eat your delicious baby.

June 24, 2007 @ 3:18 am | Comment

You know, I’m with Richard here. I’m getting tired of these threads. It’s just the same shit, over and over again. Mindless name-calling and defensive snits, on both sides of the argument.

And the fact that there are consistent “sides” is part of the problem. This isn’t about reasoned discussion or rational debate. This is about “my team can kick your team’s ass.”

Save it for basketball, okay?

June 24, 2007 @ 4:26 am | Comment

“It’s a developing nation. Guess what, life is rough in developing nations.”

Oddly, so many of these developing countries have had the longest time to “get it right”. China’s had 500o years, what’s the excuse? Besides the western barbarians and the japanese?

“Look at Wu Yi when she pimpslapped Paulson.”

Because Paulson is a ankle grabbing, wet noodle punk hired by Bush on behalf of corporations who want a kowtower. Any wise company or nation should hire someone like her to do there negotiating.

Per otherlisa, here’s my basketball comment:

When is china and its obsession with “tall” going to be able to take on the S. Korean sharpshooters? I guess “tall” is not an effective strategy…neither is “big commie” style b-ball.

June 24, 2007 @ 5:38 am | Comment

I have to admit I’ve been pretty lazy around here. i say a lot of what I think but I dont bother to go back to the info source and provide it here.

I guess if we want to talk about the facts and not just our opinions, then we’ll have to be backing up what we say. I know that theres no freedom of speach in China. They let you free as long as its within certain boundaries so as to give the illusion of freedom, and the people are grateful for that little bit so they agree not to cross the boundary…They are to fearful of the consequences and have excuses up the rear to defend the party’s restrictions on them…

There are people who know this, and there are people who are actually in the bubble and they see it as the party wants them to see it… Its so obvious to me BUT

Those people probly think I”M in a ignrance bubble, so thats why I think when we have such oppsing views on solid facts, then we’d be better off to present evidence so that we can learn fron eachother instead of just holding our views thinking the other guy is not intelligent.

I guess if we think someone is ignorant, the best thing to do is help to solve that instead of just calling him ignorant.

June 24, 2007 @ 5:47 am | Comment

I admire nanhey’s sharp intellect when it comes to backing up his opinions..

I presented the harvard study on internet censorship, for me that is a solid peice of evidence that things are blocked.

http://cyber.law.harvard.edu/filtering/china/

Also:

“Who is the number one subversive, the number one opponent, the number one nay sayer, the number one obstructionist [opposing China]? It is not Taiwan, it is not Hong Kong, it is not cor666rupt offic666ials, it is not overseas pro-democracy elements, it is not American imperialism, it is not the Fmamlmumn Gmomnmg, it is not the families of the June 4 victims. It is the Cen000tral Propa000ganda Depar000tment of the Chinese Comm00unist Party.”
With words like these, Professor Jiao Guobiao launched his recent attack on the Central Propaganda Department of the Communist Party of China. Predictably, his Internet article was swiftly erased from Chinese websites and did not appear in the press. Professor Jiao, who is at the School of Journalism and Communication at Beijing University, accused the Propaganda Department of stifling press freedom and political reform.
The detailed nature of his criticism, accompanied by some entertaining polemics, is revealed now that a full English translation of his article has become available.

read this article:

http://www.pwhce.org/sa0604.html

and a commentary with several media reports:

http://www.zonaeuropa.com/20040505_1.htm

and the forbidden commentary itself:

http://www.zonaeuropa.com/20040505_2.htm

June 24, 2007 @ 6:28 am | Comment

Ferins, I can’t force you to do anything. But I can warn you – don’t talk like that again. Consider yourself warned.

June 24, 2007 @ 2:00 pm | Comment

Ya know, Ferins, the title of this thread is indeed “Freedom of Speech.” Ergo, thus and therefore, have at it, old chap.

But…to quote Tim on “The Office”:
“you’re a cock, you’re a cock, you’re a cock.”

June 24, 2007 @ 8:06 pm | Comment

who cares what names people call you, its so dumb, he called you a name now you have to call him one? HWtas that? ok ok I guess thats just sorta normal but, id onno, theres so much at stake here and it just shows where some peoples priorities and values lie and I mean lie as in down on the ground.

June 25, 2007 @ 12:16 am | Comment

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