Open thread?

I put the question mark in there because I got kind of disillusioned with the open threads here after they became popular (so much random banter) and I just want to test whether I should start it up again, especially considering how insane my schedule already is, and how it’s only going to get worse in late March, to the point of possibly forcing me to close the blog altogether.

One commenter in the previous thread suggested I start this up again, so let’s see how it goes. Another commenter in the same thread said I should get a discussion going on this opinion piece by my dear friend, Philip Cunningham. I know, we already have two active threads going on Spielberg, so please feel free to bring up whatever you want – just try to keep it relevant to this blog. And do read the Cunningham column – he makes some fair points.

Do you want an open thread, and if I leave one up will you use it?

______________

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: 116 Comments

Prof. C. indeed seems to make some pretty fair points. For what it’s worth, my conversation, on the day the Spielberg story broke, with a Chinese friend, a reasonable distance from Beijing:
Me: Oh, you know the American director, Spielberg?
Her: You mean the one who made Schindler’s List?
Me: Yes, that’s him. You know he’s doing the opening ceremony for the Olympics?
Her: I thought Zhang Yimou was doing it.
Me: Yes, but Spielberg’s some kind of artistic advisor.
Her: Is he?
Me: Oh…

I appreciate it’s been much more widely discussed since then, and this is just one conversation, but it struck me that it could hardly be an earth-shattering loss.

Richard,
On another matter. I had been looking forward to your report on the dopod phone you were going to buy. I appreciate you’re rather busy, but I’m just on the point of buying the same one myself and wondered whether I might ask you a couple of questions about it. Might I email you, or could I post a couple of questions here?

February 22, 2008 @ 12:34 pm | Comment

I will start…

The question is, how low will US dollar go, against RMB?

February 22, 2008 @ 12:36 pm | Comment

Jxie, answer is much, much lower.

Sima, I finally tracked down a place in Beijing that sells the HTC Touch (Dopod S1) with the English interface added. This was thanks to a reader who led me there, and he himself is using the phone. Well, they promised me in early February that I could come back after Spring Festival to pick up the phone, but when i did they told me to come back two days later, that after installing the English the phone wasn’t working correctly. Two days later, more bad news – they failed again on a different handset, and now they are awaiting a new shipment, and if I can just wait another two weeks or so…. I am now wondering if I will ever get my HTC touch. Based on this experience, I think I may have to wait until the next time I’m in Hong Kong.

February 22, 2008 @ 1:42 pm | Comment

I read Philip Cunningham’s piece and my own reaction was a big “so what?”. I may very well be true that there is a glaring contrast between Spielberg’s reaction to Chinese society in 1987 and today. But so what? That does in no way invalidate his criticism at all. I think we expect more of China now than we did in 1987, just in the same way as we expect more from the US or the EU than from China now.

Furthermore, I think we need to get rid of the idea that there is a single “correct” way of reacting to PRC policy that is supposed to produce the desired outcome, whatever that may be. We may all be equally appalled (or indifferent) to PRC policy towards Sudan. China is no monolith and neither is the rest of the world. Spielberg chose, for whatever reason, to withdraw from the 2008 Olympics, and others, who share his criticism, may opt to stay on. So what? That is the very definition of political pluralism.

February 22, 2008 @ 1:46 pm | Comment

Fair enough, Amban. I do tend to agree with his closing paragraphs. I’ve had the privilege of looking with a bird’s eye view at how Mia Farrow and her team operate and for once I have to side with Philip, who, by the way, is no friend of mine. He thoroughly loathes me.

February 22, 2008 @ 2:04 pm | Comment

The way that the Chinese media has been describing Speilberg and international organizations involved in the boycott is purely deceptive and completely designed to get sexually-deprived nationalist males’ panties in a bunch.
Again, as I suggested in another thread, boycott the wack-off fest at the opening ceremony, and participate in the games. There could be no better demonstration of one’s commitment to the so-called “Olympic spirit.”

PS- richard, not to be mean, but when you find yourself agreeing with Cunningham, it’s time to take a look in the mirror.

February 22, 2008 @ 2:31 pm | Comment

I thought Cunningham’s final argument was ridiculous. So people should avoid saying anything that hurts the pride of Chinese people? When was the last time Chinese people avoided criticising the US to avoid offending American pride?

Seems like his usual nonsense.

February 22, 2008 @ 3:03 pm | Comment

Thanks, Richard. My local (shenyang) source for the S1 insists it’s a simple matter to install English myself from the company’s website. Sounds like that may not be quite the case. I’ve still to locate the local palm supplier and really need something soon. Hope you get your hands on the machine before too long.

February 22, 2008 @ 3:18 pm | Comment

I didn’t read it that way, Raj. I heard it more as, why threaten to ruin the Olympics, a great source of pride to hundreds of millions of Chinese, especially since even if you succeeding in ruining it it won’t matter a bit for those suffering in Darfur. I strongly disagreed with the US strategy toward the Moscow games under Carter, and even in my most strident anti-CCP days I never once advocated going after the Olympics, which I see as an ineffective and inappropriate strategy and one with a very strong potential to backfire.

Go ahead an blast China for its dealings with devils – I do it all the time. I don’t think the Olympics should be the target, however.

February 22, 2008 @ 3:24 pm | Comment

Kevin, I actually agree with most of Cunningham’s criticisms of America, but always hated – and still hate – his willingness to suck up to the party all the time and tailor everything he says so it meets the lofty standards of CCTV-9.

February 22, 2008 @ 3:30 pm | Comment

i agree with raj’s comments – what cunningham said what reasonable to a point before the concluding part about the chinese people’s feelings. i think a lot of people are tired of hearing of the chinese people and their incredibly easily hurt feelings.

on a more positive note, and as my initial contribution to the happy happy thread, here is a remarkable interview with zhou youguang, inventor of pinyin. he is 102, and pinyin is 50 years old this month. a deeply impressive man, i thought.

http://tinyurl.com/2kcytr

February 22, 2008 @ 4:53 pm | Comment

Okay, I’ll agree with you on that, guys – I hate the argument that you shouldn’t criticize China’s barbarities because it’ll hurt their feelings. I stick to my own argument, however, that the way to bring about constructive change is not through arm-twisting the Olympics, which I find self-defeating and, based on what I know of Mia Farrow’s tactics, bullying and short-sighted.

February 22, 2008 @ 5:11 pm | Comment

I’ve only ever encountered Cunningham before at a blog called Informed Comment Global Affairs, which is a branch of Juan Cole’s Informed Comment blog that has been a valuable source for news and opinion about the Middle East. Anyway, the ICGA blog is quite good too and was especially useful in the aftermath of the Bhutto assassination in Pakistan.

Cunningham’s contributions (I’ve only read two) have both been long, loving paeans to CCTV Dialogue host Yang Rui. He paints Rui as a thoroughly unbiased, bold, and hard-hitting journalist who is the best example of how Chinese journalism is actually freer and more open than Japan’s, not to mention various Western countries. His posts were truly breathtaking suck-ups, and utterly at odds with the opinions of everyone else who has watched Dialogue for five minutes.

February 22, 2008 @ 6:16 pm | Comment

I like Cunningham’s article. I also agree with richard’s above post esp. his & Cunningham’s opinions regarding Mia Farrow’s self-promoting short sightedness. As for hurting the Chinese people’s feelings? As if it matters. Well, maybe some overseas Chinese living in their respective race conscious foreign countries who may have to defend themselves being guilty by association, whether they agree or disagree with whoever. I remember the decade leading to HK handover, I don’t know how many times I was asked of my feelings about 1997
in Canada.

February 22, 2008 @ 7:37 pm | Comment

Si — thanks for the Zhou Youguang thing. I’m an admirer of his.

February 22, 2008 @ 7:59 pm | Comment

The article about pinyin was interesting, but it gives the impression that Zhou Yougang invented the system more or less single-handedly, which is not true.

As a matter of fact that pinyin is based on Latinxua sinwenz, which was devised by Soviet and Chinese experts in 1929-31 and intended to facilitate communication across the Sino-Soviet border. For more on this, see Chappell, Hilary. “The Romanization Debate.” The Australian Journal of Chinese Affairs 20, no. 4 (1980): 105-18.

February 22, 2008 @ 9:13 pm | Comment

Several people above have commented on the issue of the feelings of the Chinese people, and why anyone should even care.

There are two ways to interpret that:

- first, feelings aren’t really being hurt in China. I don’t want to over-describe the reaction; no one’s climbing over embassy walls and burning down buildings here… but let me put it this way, sympathies for Darfur in China has gone from non-existent to negative.

- second, there’s the argument that the feelings of the Chinese people don’t really matter. It’s an interesting claim from people who also seem to argue democracy is important for China. I suspect many here thought that American foreign policy in the Middle East was a bad idea because it might “inflame” Arab/Muslim sentiment… where’s the logic in inflaming the negative sentiment of 1.3 billion people?

At the end of the day, we’re talking about a sports tournament and a movie director. This is not the sort of life/death drama that Iraq, Afghanistan, or even Darfur itself represents.. and I understand that. From a significance point of view, a few editorials (and three whole threads on PKD) is probably all the story deserves.

But in terms of long-term impact, even this piddling story will contribute to the certainty by many Chinese that even the “progressive elements” in the West don’t get us, and doesn’t really care to. It confirms that Chinese interests aren’t, well, very interesting. After all, even after all this… Dream of Darfur doesn’t bother to build a Chinese version of their website, or release any of their documents in Chinese.

You’ll have to pardon the average Chinese, then, for being a little skeptical going forward when the same “progressive elements” claim to speak for Chinese interests on issues like environmental protection or human rights.

February 23, 2008 @ 12:35 am | Comment

Here’s an interesting piece of information, in regards to Mia Farrow’s position on Sudan, which should engender debate.

http://whereistand.com/MiaFarrow/5255

She said she is not in favor of U.S. troops heading into Darfur, largely because of the commitment to Iraq.

“We have no stomach for any further military engagement,” she said. “It would be viewed as an invasion, and it’s debatable what the result would be.”

Thoughts?

February 23, 2008 @ 12:42 am | Comment

@CCT

This is your personal opinion. I would very much like to see some evidence for the claim that Chinese sympathy towards Darfur has gone from neutral to negative. And if you are indeed right, I find it troubling that this supposed Chinese public opinion turns against Darfur because of something that some American individuals do. That would indeed be the triumph of negativity.

February 23, 2008 @ 12:49 am | Comment

@Amban,

I find I have to speak very, very carefully around you. My opinion towards Darfur itself hasn’t changed. My opinion towards the Darfur activist program has.

Like all humans with a conscience, I hope Darfur can find peace and stability.

On the other hand, I wouldn’t piss on Mia Farrow if she was on fire. Any political or charitable cause she affiliates herself with will automatically be seen with skeptical-shaded glasses.

February 23, 2008 @ 1:14 am | Comment

Cunningham’s criticisms of the US are always placed within a framework where the concluding remark is “China so cool!” So, while I might take similar criticisms seriously in another context (and often do), Cunningham’s mode of argumentation is basically at kindergarten-level and thus makes his points invalid. I mean, who can take self-reflective critiques seriously from a man who fawns over Yang Rui?

February 23, 2008 @ 1:46 am | Comment

Just to throw a bit of fuel on the Olympics fire:

Anyone else catch that the US is now planning to ship large amounts of meat to Beijing for its team personnel during the event?

In other news, the US just recently had its largest beef recall in history.

February 23, 2008 @ 2:07 am | Comment

@PB
“Anyone else catch that the US is now planning to ship large amounts of meat to Beijing for its team personnel during the event?”

I think is hat more to do with trying to avoid false positives in doping tests. Some of the additives used in food, specially in meat could trigger them, although the additives are of normal use in most parts of the word, nothing to to with tainted food at all

Besides, being a todays athlete a highly delicate precision machine, they will want to control 100% the diet. Even small changes could have and impact in performance. I am certain that the something applies for athletes from other countries.

The food restriction only applies to athletes not to the accompanying non competing staff, who will use the standard food facilities.

I am also sure that most of the athletes, at the end of their competitions, would like to enjoy the richness of the Chinese gastronomy.

February 23, 2008 @ 6:58 am | Comment

“The Beijing authorities need to graciously accept the fact that people are going to politicize the Olympics for all kinds of reasons – good, bad, ridiculous and ludicrous.”

Especially because the Beijing authorities themselves have been politicizing the Olympics for their own reasons.

“So, what’s different this time?”

Back then, Mr. Spielberg was directing a movie produced by himself and a few other people. This time, he would be directing the opening ceremony of a sports event hosted by an authoritarian regime that has already started exploiting same sports event for propaganda purposes quite a while ago. I was already sick of all the Olympics-related nonsense on CCTV back in autumn 2005.
Anyway, Steven Spielberg was probably first quite enthusiastic about the idea of having a hand in staging what is very likely going to be one of the most spectacular celebrations in history, but after a while came to the conclusion that his conscience did not allow him to direct a propaganda act for a government with which he disagrees on crucial matters. So he turned them down, the same way he would most likely turn down George W. Bush if the latter asked him to help enhance the Bush administration’s image as an artistic adviser.
Steven Spielberg never asked for a boycott of China, not even a boycott of the Beijing Olympics. He simply refused to work – in effect – for the CCP.

“Not only do the actions of the idealistic American actress have a narcissistic edge inasmuch as her agitation puts her back in the limelight after fading from the screen, but her singling out of China reeks of a sort of subliminal racism not uncommon among well-heeled liberals.”

Now, I do not agree with everything Mia Farrow and other Darfur activists say. I especially disagree with the way they make it look as if the PRC alone was to blame for what is happening in Sudan and the PRC alone could stop it, if they only wanted to. But with this ad hominem attack Philip Cunningham certainly has reached a new low. Playing the racist card is way out of line.

“In her eagerness to promote her cause, she inadvertently bruises the pride of countless Chinese individuals anticipating a rare moment of glory in a long history ravaged by much sorrow.”

What about the real bruises and the sorrow of people like Hu Jia and their families? I never heard Mr. Cunningham say anything about that.

February 23, 2008 @ 7:47 am | Comment

I couldn’t agree more, mor. In fact, I would argue that it is racist for Cunningham to so persistently defend a government that treats its people like disposables.
In a way, it may seem that he cares about the people of Iraq more than the people of China, considering his constant attention to the horrors of Iraq and his blindness to the underside of China. This would be a clear double standard, and thus a form of racism: as if the lives of the Chinese people harassed, imprisoned, and murdered by their government were worth less than the lives of other people.
However, upon closer inspection, it becomes obvious that perhaps he doesn’t actually care about any of these people, including the people of Iraq, and that they are all just pawns in his efforts to earn political points and aggrandize the authoritarian government whose leg he hugs like a frightened child.

February 23, 2008 @ 9:49 am | Comment

The situation in the Sudan has been distorted by the Western media. The West tries to make out there is some sort of racial conflict arab against black thing going on, when the reality is that all parties are black. The Sudanese government is an Islamic government and is entitled to prevent the breakup of their country.

Why do you see so little black American involvement in the anti-Sudan protests?

Louis Farrakhan has analyzed the situation brilliantly. The real agenda of the Darfur crowd of course is to topple an Islamic government and whack China back at the same time, and also pave the way to another neocon adventure in the oil rich region.
http://www.finalcall.com/artman/publish/article_4231.shtml

As a percentage of the overall national population, more have been killed in the invasion of Iraq than have been purportedly killed in Sudan.

Are we going to boycott the London games if British troops are still in Iraq? Were the Los Angeles games boycotted because of US support for Saddam Hussein’s killing of the Kurds and invasion of Iran.

This little subversive hissy fit of Spielbergs is just pathetic – and has actually roused many Chinese to indignation. The hypcrisy is as transparent as it is sickening.

In the end the west cannot stomach seeing a yellow man dealing with a black man and having an influence on world affairs, without first deferring to the sensibilities of the West. Obviously whites cannot stand a strong, resurgent China which will no longer obey its edicts as was the case prior to 1949. Tough.

February 23, 2008 @ 10:34 am | Comment

Raj said: “So people should avoid saying anything that hurts the pride of Chinese people? When was the last time Chinese people avoided criticising the US to avoid offending American pride?”

Chinese people will rarely take the initiative to criticize America. We realize that in many respects America is an advanced nation from which we can learn a lot.

When was the last time you heard either the Chinese government or Chinese people at large, lecture the US on human rights, or pollution, racism etc?

The US attacks China first, and then the Chinese justifiably respond.

February 23, 2008 @ 10:42 am | Comment

So the real agenda of the anti-Darfur activists is to topple an Islamist government? Really? And what do these wolves in sheep’s clothing want to replace it with? A Christian theocracy, perhaps? This, I must say, is amusingly creative but alas completely wrong. Then again, when Louis Farrakhan is your source….

Perhaps I’m being naive, but it seems that most of the anti-Sudan sentiment derives from a very justifiable abhorrence to genocide, and the fact that China’s government has thus far refused to cooperate in efforts to penalize Sudan due to economic reasons is indeed worthy of condemnation.

I agree that a boycott of the Olympics would be counterproductive, but why should China get a free pass over this? I find the reflexive “but the US is just as bad wah wah wah” argument pretty damn tiresome.

The point is, a distinction should be made between bad regimes and bad regimes that practice genocide.

And I hate bringing this up, but wasn’t the Belgrade embassy bombing a pretty clear example of China taking the initiative to criticize America over what most reasonable people understand was accidental?

February 23, 2008 @ 11:22 am | Comment

Si, that link to the pinyin interview – amazing story!! Thanks so much for that.

If any of you who are interested in Chinese didn’t read it, go there now.

February 23, 2008 @ 11:32 am | Comment

More signs of change in China! Cool article:

China’s Communist leaders are taking another step away from their Marxist-Leninist roots by removing the word “Revolutionary” from the titles awarded to those who die an heroic death.

About 340,000 families across the country currently take pride in a relative who has been awarded the title of “Revolutionary Martyr”. That custom is set to change with the intent of better reflecting the new face of China.

A draft of the new rules, with the word “Revolutionary” removed, has been published for public comment for a week – a move that signals that the change is a foregone conclusion.

Under the new system those put forward for the title of “Martyr” will no longer have to be socialists, and anyone who has died as a publicly accepted hero could qualify for martyrdom. Currently a martyr is someone “killed by his enemy when carrying out revolutionary tasks”.

February 23, 2008 @ 11:36 am | Comment

When was the last time you heard either the Chinese government or Chinese people at large, lecture the US on human rights, or pollution, racism etc?

Plenty of times. If you cared to look, you would find examples of that. During the Mao era, the Chinese government criticized the US government for racial segregation. The Chinese government was right then, but it was wrong about other things. Try to get rid of this tit-for-tat mentality, the cliched “ren bu fan wo, wo bu fan ren, ren ruo fan wo, wo bi fan ren kind of mentality.

February 23, 2008 @ 11:55 am | Comment

In the end the west cannot stomach seeing a yellow man dealing with a black man and having an influence on world affairs, without first deferring to the sensibilities of the West. Obviously whites cannot stand a strong, resurgent China which will no longer obey its edicts as was the case prior to 1949. Tough.

You’d better watch it. This is not about race. We’re talking about one white man being outraged by the alleged actions of one unelected and unaccountable government. No need for either you or anyone else to get worked up about that.

February 23, 2008 @ 11:59 am | Comment

Raj said: “So people should avoid saying anything that hurts the pride of Chinese people? When was the last time Chinese people avoided criticising the US to avoid offending American pride?”

In response, Jeb said”"”When was the last time you heard either the Chinese government or Chinese people at large, lecture the US on human rights, or pollution, racism etc?”"”"

I dont think you can understand these types of criticisms so personally. These criticisms are legitimate and they are normal practice. They are not directed at Chinese people. You should understand the difference between you as a person and the communist party. Their intention is for you to mix these together and defend their honour as if it was your own. This is something you could learn from Americans and most people in the world except the North Koreans or Cubans. What’s important is if YOU are a good guy, if you do the right things and act responsibly within your country and fulfill your role in society as best you can. The communist party is forced on the people so it is a great misunderstanding that China and the people are represented by this party.

Did YOU put people with free thinking in Gulags because they have a strong conscience? No, so it would be great if you could stop giving undo honours to this party just because you are trained to do so and you have no access to information about the ruling party.

I fsomeone criticses the party, a lot of the time it is because they want to help the Chinese people be free from repression, and a lot of Chinese people desperately want to have freedom of thought and cant stand the abuses of the party, so international criticism is to help.

Mia Farrow does not seem to know about what goes on in China, but I can not say that her plight is wrong because it is pretty gross to give weapons to genocidal regimes, but it grossly undermines the point that the CCP is a genocidal regime…

February 23, 2008 @ 12:12 pm | Comment

“And I hate bringing this up, but wasn’t the Belgrade embassy bombing a pretty clear example of China taking the initiative to criticize America over what most reasonable people understand was accidental?”

Yes and I suppose if a Chinese jet had accidentally’bombed the American embassy under similar circumstances causing loss of life, Americans would be quite insouciant about it and say ‘just an accident”

As for Farrakhan’s opinion, don’t just shoot the messenger, listen to the message. He is if anything extremely pro-black, and if he really thought there to be a major genocide would be the first to condemn it.

February 23, 2008 @ 12:16 pm | Comment

ps,

I read Mr. Cunninghams article and it had the usual effect on me when I read something written by someone harmfully ignorant or blatantly bought off.

Give the baby some candy and it will behave…… And if it doesnt behave? Give it more and add on plenty of excuses. And no one is allowed to call a spade a spade unless they say it in a way that some how makes the criminal feel good??? Or in a way that doesnt have any effect on anything? Or the person making the criticism has to have the perfect moral record in order to say anything, what a bunch bull.

But I felt better reading some of the comments here because I am happy when I see that not everyone buys such crap. That ignorance, excuses and apathy/corruption is so rampant its so depressing, so I feel a bit better (-:

Interesting post…

February 23, 2008 @ 12:24 pm | Comment

“You’d better watch it. This is not about race. We’re talking about one white man being outraged by the alleged actions of one unelected and unaccountable government”

Look at the Darfur crowd- 95% WHITE. Spielberg is just one man but he is acting at the behest of a whole group of people who 1. Want to topple an Islamic governemtn 2. are sour that China has beneficial relationship with Sudan and gets oil from that area 3. want to smash China down and get that oil for themselves.

Whites just can’t get use to the fact that there is possibly going to be a large non-white nation on the block that wants to act in its OWN interests, not the interests of the West.

February 23, 2008 @ 12:27 pm | Comment

“95% WHITE”

Data?

“Acting at the behest of…”

Evidence?

“Whites just can’t get use to…”

All white people? The Norwegians, too? I’ve heard Norwegian has a large number of caucasians. Are they part of this? What about the Lichtensteiners? Part of a global racist anti-China conspiracy? Is every white in on it or just those that are wearing certain t-shirts and/or bearing some sort of distinguishing mark? Is there some way we can identify these anti-China/anti-Sudanese whites? I just want to be on the look out so that I might warn my neighbors of their approach.

Finally (and I suppose along the same lines):

“pro-black”? I don’t think I’ve ever heard that expression before, I’m not even sure what it means. Care to define?

February 23, 2008 @ 12:38 pm | Comment

“I fsomeone criticses the party, a lot of the time it is because they want to help the Chinese people be free from repression, and a lot of Chinese people desperately want to have freedom of thought and cant stand the abuses of the party, so international criticism is to help.”

Snow – you are being wilfully ignorant and naive here. The same Westerners who invaded and plundered China for over 100 years, who said “no Chinese or dogs allowed”, who committed untold colonial crimes for which they have not even recognized, let alone apologized, now feel they have the right to lecture Chinese on how they should run their own affairs?
How about reparations for slavery, Opium War. When are those Boxer indemnities going to be returned – with interest?

Scratch an anti-China character and you will invariably find a racist. Often I will defend China to whites and it is not long before abuse along the lines of “chink”, “slope”, “yellow-belly” start popping out.

As for Spielberg, the article is correct. Spielberg is a hypocrite. Not only does he support the invasion of Iraq, but donates to Israel, which illegally occupies Arab land and murders Palestinians indiscriminately.

February 23, 2008 @ 12:46 pm | Comment

Why is this still even an issue? If I were the CCP spokespeople, I would have just laughed it off last week.

Q: “Reaction to Director Speilberg and Mia Farrow?”
A: “Hu Jintao has said that he cares more about the color and consistency of his morning constitutional than what Mia Farrow thinks, and as for the director, tell him that Wen Jiabao considers making Harrison Ford still do his own stunts as Indiana Jones when the man is like 83 is worth its own human rights investigation. Next question…”

Instead they trotted out some crazy line about how “he was never officially appointed because he didn’t sign the letter, thus it can’t be characterized as a resignation but rather a refusal” trying out the time-tested PR strategy used by jilted boyfriends everywhere: “Yeah, well I was going to break up with you anyway.”

Yeesh.

February 23, 2008 @ 12:50 pm | Comment

Of course not all whites are anti-China. In fact most whites are not anti-China. But 99percent of the anti-China crowd are white.

Louis Farrakhan is deeply concerned for the well-being of black people the world over. His opinion on Darfur is well-worth listening to – give him a fair hearing.

February 23, 2008 @ 12:51 pm | Comment

“Why is this still even an issue? If I were the CCP spokespeople, I would have just laughed it off last week.”

I agree with you here. Getting all hot and bothered about it just makes Mia Farrow all the more happy.

But this thread is justified because there is alarger issue of the agenda of the anti-China brigade and its hypocrisy.

February 23, 2008 @ 12:54 pm | Comment

http://www.taipeitimes.com/News/taiwan/archives/2008/02/22/2003402321

Forum examines Beijing’s pre-Olympics rights record

STAFF WRITER, WITH CNA
Friday, Feb 22, 2008, Page 4

Most people around the world are indifferent toward human-rights abuses, Canadian human-rights attorney David Matas told an international forum in Taipei yesterday.

Even though the public agrees that human-rights violations in China are wrong, “they are not prepared to do anything about it,” he said.

Describing indifference as the “biggest obstacle” to combating rights violations, Matas said that “people are indifferent because they do not pay close enough attention to sort out truth from falsehood, the real from the unreal.”

He said the best strategies are to arouse awareness of human rights and to enable everyone to distinguish the lies told by any regime in the form of propaganda and cover-ups.

Discounting China’s promise to improve its rights record, Paolo Barabesi, a representative of Human Rights Without Frontiers, said there has not been any progress, noting that Beijing has suppressed religion and the development of human rights.

The forum, titled “Human Rights in China and the 2008 Olympics,” was organized by the Coalition to Investigate the Persecution of Falun Gong in China (CIPFG) and the Taiwan Culture Foundation.

Democratic Progressive Party Legislator William Lai (賴清德), who also serves as CIPFG Asia president, urged the world to face up to the Chinese government’s suppression of human rights and to take measures to prevent the Beijing Games from becoming a repeat of the 1936 Berlin Olympics.

The Berlin Games were a propaganda tool for Nazi Germany, Lai said, adding that “what the 2008 Beijing Olympic Games is going to be is in our hands.”

Ps,

Kevin makes some very good comments like:

“”" I suggested in another thread, boycott the wack-off fest at the opening ceremony, and participate in the games. There could be no better demonstration of one’s commitment to the so-called “Olympic spirit.”

February 23, 2008 @ 12:56 pm | Comment

Not that it minimizes in any way the destructive effects of European and Japanese imperialism in China but…

When are those Boxer indemnities going to be returned – with interest?”

Actually beginning in 1908, the US government returned almost the entire indemnity to China (some of it was however used to compensate victims’ families and for property loss) with much of the returned money going to a scholarship and university fund for Chinese students. Perhaps the most famous recipient was Hu Shi, who attended Cornell and Columbia on a Boxer fellowship. Britain, Russia, France, Italy, Belgium and the Netherlands also returned most or all of their indemnities in the years between 1922-1933.*

Hardly a drop in the bucket considering the enormous damages done over the past century, but I wanted to be sure in future versions of your argument/rant you didn’t use a mistaken reference.

*Chi-ming Hou, Foreign Investment and Economic Development in China, 1840-1937 cited in Immanuel C.Y. Hsu (1999).

February 23, 2008 @ 12:58 pm | Comment

“But 99percent of the anti-China crowd are white.”

Data? Evidence?

What does it mean to be anti-China? Does criticizing the CCP make one “Anti-China”? What about questioning Chinese government policy as regards the Sudan? Does that make one “Anti-China?” How is this “Anti-China” being defined here?

Does opposing the Iraq War make one anti-American? Is an American who criticizes President Bush’s foreign policy unpatriotic?

February 23, 2008 @ 1:12 pm | Comment

Try to get rid of this tit-for-tat mentality, the cliched “ren bu fan wo, wo bu fan ren, ren ruo fan wo, wo bi fan ren kind of mentality. Posted by: Amban

Who the hell are you to tell a people how to think? Criticize the CCP all you want, they are more than capable to defend themselves. But it doesn’t mean the rest of us have to follow suit, nor does it mean that we are therefore brain-washed, ignorant & needed to take our cues from you, you arrogant sack of infectious flea trap.

Couldn’t agree more with Jeb’s “Whites just can’t get use to the fact that there is possibly going to be a large non-white nation on the block that wants to act in its OWN interests, not the interests of the West.”

February 23, 2008 @ 1:12 pm | Comment

Thanks Jeremiah – I was aware of the scholarship – not aware that much had been paid back – but you get my drift.

“boycott the wack-off fest at the opening ceremony, and participate in the games. There could be no better demonstration of one’s commitment to the so-called “Olympic spirit.”"

Snow – you are just being self-indulgent here. Any boycott of the games will be construed as an unfriendly act not towards the Chinese government but towards the Chinese people as a whole.

However if you want China to revert to something like North Korea today, a boycott and further isolation of China would be useful. A boycott will also give you that warm glowing self-righteous feeling in your chest. To you that is more important than helping the Chinese people – is it not? Come on. Admit it.

February 23, 2008 @ 1:14 pm | Comment

First of all, I am not anti-China. I would argue that I am “pro-China.” It would be a great place with a better government.

Second:
“The same Westerners who invaded and plundered China for over 100 years… now feel they have the right to lecture Chinese on how they should run their own affairs?”
Who are these 150-200 year old people of whom you speak? Or is guilt hereditary?

February 23, 2008 @ 1:24 pm | Comment

“Youguys” – not only you and I know it, but everyone posting to this message board, in their bones, knows that the real impetus for the illogical, border-line insane anti-China feeling is the old Western bugbear of the ‘yellow peril.’

All the western press will be on the anti-China warpath this year. A plethora of books -”Wild Swans”, “Falling Leaves”, “Driven snow or whatever” back up this anti-China media blitz. And the unscholarly, lying Jung Chang bio on Mao – all this will combine into a furious effort to denigrate the achievements of the Chinese people and China. And I betcha some idiot is going to soon start foaming at the mouth demanding Chinese stop eating dogs and drinking cat soup.

The positive side however is that all this will just anger ordinary CHinese more and more. It will unite us and increase awareness of the true Western agenda to undermine the rise of China.

February 23, 2008 @ 1:36 pm | Comment

BTW, I agree with Jeremiah that it is not necessarily “anti-China” nor “Anti-America,” to criticize either. It is a matter of common courtesy, “Treat others how you want others to treat you,” or “ren bu fan wo, wo bu fan ren, ” yeah, damn straight. For example, I would never dream of criticizing my hosts to his face in his home/country. But that’s just me….HOWEVER, from your own turf as a citizen of the world, sure, I’d say, knock yourselves out!

February 23, 2008 @ 1:39 pm | Comment

“Who are these 150-200 year old people of whom you speak? Or is guilt hereditary?”

Guilt is not inherited personally. But countries inherit guilt – certainly.
If you are part of a country and identify with that country then you share in its glories and its digraces. For instance, China would be well within its rights to demand reparations from Britain for the Opium War. While this of course imputes no guilt or personal liability onto any individual British citizen, repayments by the British government of course could indirectly affect say social services etc.

February 23, 2008 @ 1:42 pm | Comment

“I would never dream of criticizing my hosts to his face in his home/country.”

If somebody is in China, are they guests of the Chinese government? If somebody criticizes the CCP, is that the same as criticizing the Chinese people?

As for where and how one criticizes the policies of a government: As an American, I’ve heard people living and working in the United States who have criticized my country, many of whom have done so on this very board. It is what it is, that’s life in Big Boy World.

There is far too much focus here on nationality. Whether done by the US government or by the Chinese government, injustice is injustice and we all, as people, have the responsiblility to speak out against injustice regardless of who is doing it, where we were born, or where we live.

February 23, 2008 @ 1:48 pm | Comment

“For example, I would never dream of criticizing my hosts to his face in his home/country. But that’s just me”

@Jeremiah,

Like I said, that’s just me; I will not tell people what to do. What gets me is not honest opinions like yours or richard’s to name a few. What gets a lot of us who are having a comparatively good living in this wonderful country and who genuinely enjoy its very interesting cultural diversifications is to have people who keep wanting more for less insinuating that they are better, smarter therefore should be treated as somebody special, ergo paid better salaries, be listened to more, be respected more because what is being construed as their condescending voices are actually the gashing wounds of my bleeding heart. Give me a break.

February 23, 2008 @ 2:10 pm | Comment

“injustice is injustice and we all, as people, have the responsiblility to speak out against injustice regardless of who is doing it, where we were born, or where we live.”
True. I’m just saying the motives of many of the anti -China crowd are not genuine. For many, bashing China for human rights is but a cover allowing expression of racist impulses, which nowadays in the West, openly at least, is difficult to do.
Of course there are genuine people – I don’t condemn them. China does have many problems in the area of human rights. But self-righteous grandstanding only makes the grandstander feel good about himself or herself – for the cause espoused it is actually counter-productive. Especially when you consider the Chinese need for face.

February 23, 2008 @ 2:21 pm | Comment

Sorry, I meant, “the gashing sounds of their bleeding hearts.”

In any case, you are right, injustice is injustice, and that’s life in the Big Boy World, which also means that laws and social rules are often bridged and broken.

“There is far too much focus here on nationality.”

Not just nationality but historical baggages and advantages; good, strong and weak beliefs and stark cultural differences. China has improved without AND also with the help of the rest of the world. The victim is not yet the victor but all it really wants for now is to maintain the peace to prosper. China is not an empire but it is very wary and its people are aware of what the existing empires are up.
Whenever the Chinese people try to defend what’s theirs to defend they are called “Nationalists,” and lynched as CCP’s hired hands. Whatever. So, in the same token, the people are therefore equally wary of Western media propaganda, & CIA backed conspiracy etc.
The Chinese are more pragmatic than ideological; we choose our battles and see the big picture. If the Japanese Empire had not invaded China, the CCP would probably still be an opposition party today and would probably remains the champion of the underdogs — the peasant majority.

February 23, 2008 @ 2:45 pm | Comment

Youguys, are you still posting under multiple names?

Jeb and youguys – I wish I could tell you just how off-base you are. The Western media is not pushing citizens to read Wild Swans. Instead, it’s usually promoting books like China CEO, 1 Billion Customers, China Shakes the World and other books about the opportunities China offers and the rapid changes over the past 30 years, mainly positive (though the corruption and oppression is an important theme of the last of the three books). You have swallowed a BS story about America hating China and fearing it. We are not all Lou Dobbs. America is intrigued, even obsessed, with China, as you’ll see by all the Americans paying to travel around the world this summer to see the Olympics.

Anyway, as usual, we’re back tp the usual rehash and, in effect, the “you don’t understand China” refrain.

Kevin, thanks for your great contributions to this thread (and the same to others, like Jeremiah). I thought the open thread would be a dud, but it seems to be worthwhile.

February 23, 2008 @ 3:35 pm | Comment

Last news from Sudan

http://www.iht.com/articles/2008/02/23/africa/23darfur.php

I thought after reading this article.
What could happen to Chinese influence and interests int the country if Sudan government suddenly decides toagree to the demands of allowing a peace keeping force and international supervision. And on the other hand given them also access to western development aid?

Could it be the real reason behind the change of China policies in Sudan that is reflected in the article?

February 23, 2008 @ 3:46 pm | Comment

“You have swallowed a BS story about America hating China and fearing it.”
Not offbase at all. It is quite obvious from the sickening hypocrisy over Darfur to Richard Geres support of the homosexual Dalai Lama to widespread misperceptions of some sort of China threat, that the overwhelming image that most Americans hold of China is overwhelmingly negative. Books like “Wild Swans”, “Mao-the Unknown Story” etc plus Lou Dobbs, plus newspaper editorials excoriating China for Burma, Darfur, Tibet etc all converge together to push China as the new enemy.

I hear so many expats in Hong Kong and China enjoy the food, the salaries and the women, yet unremittingly trash China and the Chinese. Whites feel uncomfortable about a strong, resurgent China – the “yellow peril.” That is what it all boils down to.

By the way, I’m Jeb, I’m Chinese. Live in HK. I am most definitely not “youguys”, and I am posting here today for the first time. I like the format of your website.

February 23, 2008 @ 4:12 pm | Comment

@richard,

“You have swallowed a BS story about America hating China and fearing it. We are not all Lou Dobbs.”

I am glad to hear that Americans in America are generally not suspicious of Chinese., but we are talking about our governments mostly, aren’t we?

Ill feelings towards Americans or expats is not a problem in China either. I am sure I don’t need to tell you this considering how favorably the Chinese people usually treat their foreign guests.

I am just responding to the handful of arrogant posters of this thread.

As for Jeremiah’s, PB’s etc; I am mostly in agreement with because I also like what they write on their blogs.

“Youguys, are you still posting under multiple names?”

I thought I have explained to you that I, “youguys ” and JFK (my flatmate) are two different people sharing the same apartment & ISP. Don’t worry, we don’t have the same point of views., so we won’t, what was it you called it…??? Yunno, pretending to be two different people supporting the same point of view type of monkey business. (Just compare our postings.)

@Jeremiah,

Oh, I forgot to mention in response to your:

“As an American, I’ve heard people living and working in the United States who have criticized my country, many of whom have done so on this very board.”

Sure, that’s their prerogatives; yet I have personally witnessed not only Americans, but Canadians & Aussies said to my Asian friends, a Grad & 2 post grad students, even a 12 year naturalized citizen, saying to them to the effect, “If you don’t like it here, go home to your communist country blah blah blah, or you don’t know about our country, how long have you been here? Presumably not long enough, listen to your English,” etc.

My message has always been, “WE ARE ALL GUILTY, we are all prejudice, so everyone get off our high horses.”

February 23, 2008 @ 4:19 pm | Comment

“Youguys, are you still posting under multiple names?”

I respect the fact that this is your blog, so, if this is still not ok, than “JFK” will forever disappear.
Thanks

February 23, 2008 @ 4:29 pm | Comment

Hi Jeb

Criticism does not means hate. There are two types of criticism, constructive and destructive. Quite of the criticism you may read in this blog is constructive. Many here would not mind at all to see China at world level in ALL issues. (I hope you see what I mean)

About yellow fever, I have none. Just checked the termometer ;-)
The potential benefits of released energy of China are far to great for me to be afraid.
In 1.6 billion people how many Einsteins, Newtons, Gauss could it be. Or more humbly, how many bright engineers, doctors, physics, mathematicians could there be?

That was also one of the greatest crimes of Mao’s era, to bottled up all this potential, and make life miserable for most of them in the process.

Things have improved a lot lately. But to use an analogy. China is now like a sport car, with a powerful engine but with a driver stepping on the brakes (which are overheating) And that driver is the political ans social system. I am not speakein only of the CCP.
If the brake is released, slowly and carefully, who knows what China could achieve.
If not, the brakes will burn wit the car with them…. well, we all know history to guess the results.

By the way. Do you have any problem with homosexuality? Do you consider that the sexual orientation of person have any influence in her/his authority or reputation? I would like to hear….

Regards

February 23, 2008 @ 4:37 pm | Comment

If the brake is released, slowly and carefully, who knows what China could achieve.

@ecodelta,

Isn’t that exactly what everyone in China is agreeing to , to work on releasing the brakes slowly and carefully?

Thanks

February 23, 2008 @ 5:13 pm | Comment

“If the brake is released, slowly and carefully, who knows what China could achieve.”

That is EXACTLY the point. Instant one-man one-vote would destroy the country at this point. And most Chinese people are not suffering because they don’t have the vote yet.

China is just following the path of South Korea, Taiwan and Singapore. But obviously because of the sheer size of the country things may not be able to happen as fast as in those countries.

Compare China now to India now. On almost every indice of health, education China leads India by a substantial margin. Democracy would not automatically mean life would improve. Child labour, worker exploitation – yes China has these – but India has even more problems in this area and these problems are not ephemeral development problems, but hog-tied to long standing cultural and traditional norms.

Do you think the average Chinese peasant worries more about lacking the vote or the high price of basic medical care?

China has had to bite the bullet and take some short term (hopefully) pain, like the one-child policy for example, for longer term gain.

And anyone even slightly familiar with Chinese history should understand why groups like Falun Gong have to be supressed – Taipings, white lotus society ring a bell?

Most people of good will would love to see a prosperous, democratic and civilized China. But without social stability first China will never get to that dream.

February 23, 2008 @ 6:02 pm | Comment

“Do you have any problem with homosexuality? Do you consider that the sexual orientation of person have any influence in her/his authority or reputation?”

No it should not. But it is certainly not something you would expect in a religious leader – especially when virtually every religion on earth severely proscribes such behaviour. So there is nothing wrong with homosexuality per se, but a homosexual religious leader seems to me to be someone who is trying to have his cake and eat it too. But I think this is a bit outside the topic of this thread.

February 23, 2008 @ 6:12 pm | Comment

“However, upon closer inspection, it becomes obvious that perhaps he doesn’t actually care about any of these people, including the people of Iraq, and that they are all just pawns in his efforts to earn political points and aggrandize the authoritarian government whose leg he hugs like a frightened child.”

Spot on, Kevin. And thanks to you, from now on, the name Phil Cunningham is going to conjure up the picture of a frightened little monkey clinging to Yang Rui’s leg.

February 23, 2008 @ 8:15 pm | Comment

he doesn’t actually care about any of these people, including the people of Iraq, and that they are all just pawns in his efforts to earn political points and aggrandize the authoritarian government whose leg he hugs like a frightened child
Kevin and Mor completely miss the point. Cunningham mentions the people of Iraq, not to claim that he particularly cares for them, but simply to point out the hypocrisy of singling out China for punishment over its foreign policy.

Mia Farrow is correctly portrayed as a hypocrite. This fact stands by itself – regardless of whether Cunningham really cares about the welfare of Iraqis or not. And who are you Kevin, to say he does not? You telepathic of something?

February 23, 2008 @ 8:28 pm | Comment

“95% WHITE”

Data?

1993 FBI statistics. What else could it be?

February 23, 2008 @ 8:28 pm | Comment

“Who the hell are you to tell a people how to think? Criticize the CCP all you want, they are more than capable to defend themselves. But it doesn’t mean the rest of us have to follow suit, nor does it mean that we are therefore brain-washed, ignorant & needed to take our cues from you, you arrogant sack of infectious flea trap.”

Looks like youguys and ferin went to the same school.

February 23, 2008 @ 8:33 pm | Comment

as if the lives of the Chinese people harassed, imprisoned, and murdered by their government were worth less than the lives of other people.

Kevin: who is being ‘murdered’ by the Chinese government? Come on – tell me one person who has being ‘murdered’ by the government over say the past ten years. And by the way, judicial execution is not murder. In fact the use of the death penalty is extremely popular among most Chinese. I have hardly met one mainly Chinese who is not enthusiastic about the death penalty.

Where the death penalty is concerned the Chinese government is in fact far more responsive to popular opinion than Western governments. Poll after poll in Britain show a clear majority favoring the death penalty, yet the government there refuses to bring back hanging – what type of ‘democracy’ is that?

So Kevin what people exactly are being murdered. Put up or shut up.

February 23, 2008 @ 8:36 pm | Comment

If this is still a free thread,?

How about a tribute to the retired (who for 50 years have been totally misrepresented by the West) Fidel Castro, the greatest leader of our time?

My British (Anglos) friends who visited Cuba in 2001 were absolutely impressed with the high quality of life, the high quality of it’s medical services and it’s great education system and its highly educated populace. Another group of Asians, a couple were my buddies, who visited in 2004 also had great things to say about Cuba.

Watched Michael Moore’s “SICKO” lately?

If not get your truth from British MP, G. Galloway’s tribute to Castro & his Cuba.

http://www.spiderednews.com/GeorgeGalloway.htm?vid=251200

February 23, 2008 @ 8:49 pm | Comment

“Who are these 150-200 year old people of whom you speak? Or is guilt hereditary?”

Yes, every baby born in Japan is responsible for the Nanjing massacre, every person living in Europe is to blame for the Opium Wars and all “Western” people have to answer for the mistreatment of Chinese workers in the USA during the 19th century.
The question is: why don’t we use the same standard for the CCP? Although the Chinese government has considerably changed during the last few decades, its representatives are still members of the same party that is responsible for the Hundred-Flowers-Campaign, the Great Leap forward, the Cultural Revolution, etc.

February 23, 2008 @ 8:52 pm | Comment

Looks like youguys and ferin went to the same school.
Posted by: mor

Wrong as usual, cry-baby Mor.
Are you going to continue on like a broken record moping long after Ferin have ignored your “1993 FBI statistics,” “Chinese Languages & places visited,” sarcasm etc. Jeeze, girl. From one girl to another (I assume you are a girl), grow up or stop playing with boys.

February 23, 2008 @ 8:58 pm | Comment

“”I would never dream of criticizing my hosts to his face in his home/country.”

If somebody is in China, are they guests of the Chinese government? If somebody criticizes the CCP, is that the same as criticizing the Chinese people?”

It’s very simple:
If you are not actually living in China, you have no right to criticize the Chinese government, because you don’t know what you are talking about and it’s not your business, anyway.
If you happen to live in China, you shouldn’t criticize the Chinese government either, cause if you don’t like it here, just go home!
Actually, as a “Western” person you shouldn’t comment on Chinese politics at all, because you will never understand China or the Chinese people.

February 23, 2008 @ 9:11 pm | Comment

“It is quite obvious from the sickening hypocrisy over Darfur to Richard Geres support of the homosexual Dalai Lama”

What the hell? I think we are going to have a lot of fun with Jeb.

February 23, 2008 @ 9:23 pm | Comment

Guilty as charge…

“If you don’t like it here, go home to your communist country blah blah blah, or you don’t know about our country, how long have you been here? Presumably not long enough, listen to your English, you’ve been brainwashed, lacking critical thinking….” etc..

For many, bashing China for human rights is but a cover allowing expression of racist impulses, which nowadays in the West, openly at least, is difficult to do. Of course there are genuine people – I don’t condemn them….. But self-righteous grandstanding only makes the grandstander feel good about himself or herself

February 23, 2008 @ 9:25 pm | Comment

Actually, as a “Western” person you shouldn’t comment on Chinese politics at all, because you will never understand China or the Chinese people.

No, constructive criticism should be welcomed. But surely if Westerners are genuinely concerned for the welfare of Chinese, and non-whites in general, the best thing, the most effective thing they could do is to campaign in their home countries for reparations to non-white countries for centuries of colonial plunder.
Or if they are so genuinely concerned for the average low-wage factory worker in China, perhaps these whites could organize their countrymen to voluntarily pay twice the listed price for every Chinese manufacture they buy, with an insistence that the extra go to worker welfare in China – this could of course be seen as one form of reparation for what Britain got out of the Opium Wars.

The Western colonizers in the twentieth century along killed 50million Africans and Asians and this is a decidedly conservative estimate. Yes. At least 50 million!!!

One thing Britain could do right away, before survivors and their relatives pass away, is compensate the 200,000 Kenyans murdered in the 50s during the Kenya emergency. British troops would take great delight in gouging out eyes and smash in the brains of prisoners with rifle butts.

Perhaps the West could really put its money where its mouth is, grovel and apologize to Africans and Asians, and then hand back all ill-gotten gains plus interest.

Chinese accepting criticism from westerners is like a man being lectured by a rapist to stop beating his wife.

February 23, 2008 @ 9:44 pm | Comment

Carried out by sick, perverted British anthropoid refuse:

They also had sand, pepper and water stuffed in their anuses. One apparently had his testicles cut off, and was then made to eat them. �Things got a little out of hand,� one (macho European) witness told Elkins, referring to another incident. �By the time we cut his balls off he had no ears, and his eyeball, the right one, I think, was hanging out of its socket. Too bad, he died before we got much out of him.� Women were gang-raped, had their nipples squeezed with pliers, and vermin and hot eggs thrust into their vaginas. Children were butchered and their body parts paraded around on spears. Then there were the pettier deprivations: women forbidden to sing hymns in Komiti camp, for example, because they were putting �subversive� words to them. All this while anti-Mau Mau and pro-British propaganda blared out at detainees from loudspeakers. Anderson quotes the testimony of a European officer in 1962, recalling an attempt to interrogate some �Mickeys� � a slang name for the Mau Mau.

Chinese accepting criticism from westerners is like a man being lectured by a rapist to stop beating his wife.

February 23, 2008 @ 10:00 pm | Comment

Couldn’t agree more with Jeb’s “Whites just can’t get use to the fact that there is possibly going to be a large non-white nation on the block that wants to act in its OWN interests, not the interests of the West.”

Posted by: youguys at February 23, 2008 01:12 PM

This bugs me, cause I am NOT one of these types. I did not grow up in a political atmosphere and I do not read all the newspapers and follow too much media. My first info that I really got into about China is not about world domination or politics or history, but the issues of human rights and the environment. I have learned about the so called Yellow peril or whatever from Chinese people complainging about it, never from any westerners that I know…

I can’t guarantee that the comment above os out of line. I wish I could because its lame. I really dont like it when there is a reasonable cause and then people get involved who maybe have stupid ulterior intentions.

On the flip side though, I do think there is misinterpretation going on here when it comes to people criticising ‘China’. Maybe there are people who are jealous of the rise of China, maybe, but there are legitimate reasons to worry about the communist party having a bigger power in the world. Legitimate to say the least. If I am right and there is a segment of people who love China, or at least are not prejudiced at all towards Chinese people, but who do not want the communist party having power over more people in the world, then you could see that there is a huge difference between the people of China and the CCP, and that according to me, the Chinese nation deserves as much prosperity as anyone, of course. Power to a great civilisation and great people!

But there is no way I will stand by and watch while the communist party (which is a totally messed set of lying tactics spawned from Germany and Russia, not Chinese at all and abusive to Chinese people) spreads its bull all around the world through political coercion and bribery and this whole dont hurt my feelings or loose my face crap.

Chinese people, I have no problem with, but making people stupid and lying about facts and creating a fake world in order to use people, that is just not at all acceptable……………

“The Party is in charge of propaganda, and the Party is in charge of
ideology… It is an important facet of upholding the Party’s rule—something
we must firmly stick to from beginning to end, and from which we must never
veer… You should continue to see the strengthening and improving of our
propaganda exports as a strategic mission, one wed to the battle of
propaganda and ideology.”
—Hu Jintao, President of China, in a 12/5/2003 speech given
at the National Working Conference on Propaganda and Ideology

“[Our agency] must focus on making itself accepted and referenced by media
in countries and regions who have important influence in international
public opinion and who play important roles in the international community…
Do research on and make plans for each country and area one by one… and
expand our position on the battlefield of international public opinion… Be
in the leading position, hold sway over people’s views, and take the
initiative to influence and lead international public opinion.”
— Liu Yunshan, head of the Propaganda Department of the CCP Central
Committee,
addressing China’s state-run Xinhua News Agency.

February 23, 2008 @ 10:27 pm | Comment

Who cares if it’s a communist or a Nazi that idiots voted for?

February 23, 2008 @ 10:38 pm | Comment

“It would be a great place with a better government.”

And no unnecessary foreigners.

February 23, 2008 @ 10:42 pm | Comment

Snow: you talk bull. China is not doing anything that the West is not doing now or has done in the past.

Just take for example projection of military power. Which country has the most troops stationed overseas. Which country has invaded more countries than any other over the last 50 years. Which country has bombed more innocent civilians to death than any other in the whole history of mankind. The answer is not China. Attitudes like yours, Snow, just cause misunderstanding and even hatred.
If you are interested in advancing the cause of human rights, perhaps think about lobbying your government to pay reparations to countries they raped and abused in the not too distant past.

Chinese accepting criticism from westerners is like a man being lectured by a rapist to stop beating his wife.

February 23, 2008 @ 10:44 pm | Comment

“Chinese accepting criticism from westerners…”

Who are these westerners? Which countries do you mean? Does this include Chinese living abroad (like Jung Chang?) Is it those silly Lichtensteiners again? What of the Peruvians? Are they included as well? Bahamians? West Virginians? Westenders? West Highland White Terriers?

I doubt all “Easterners” act and think alike, surely we can be a little more precise in our differentiations, no?

February 23, 2008 @ 10:51 pm | Comment

“It would be a great place with a better government.”
And no unnecessary foreigners.

Amen to that. Busybody, meddlesome whites should get the hell out. One day East Asia will be so rich that Americans will be grovelling and saying “me asian too!”

A Westerner genuinely interested in advancing the cause of human rights should donate half his wealth (which is imperialist derived) to an Asian or African.

February 23, 2008 @ 10:52 pm | Comment

Who are these westerners? Which countries do you mean?

Jeremiah, stop nit-picking and being evasive. You know who I am referring to and exactly what I mean.

February 23, 2008 @ 11:01 pm | Comment

British MP admonishes the western world: “The days of telling China what to do is over. …regarding Steven Spielberg, this third party nation punishment is a dangerous path for America to take….why, we could boycott USA for something Israel did or any number of its client states around the world may do…this endless propaganda offensive repeat of Moscow Olympics… ”

http://www.spiderednews.com/GeorgeGalloway.htm?vid=251200

February 23, 2008 @ 11:10 pm | Comment

“Chinese accepting criticism from westerners is like a man being lectured by a rapist to stop beating his wife.”

Are these westerner people rapist too?

John Gillespie Magee

Wilhelmina (Minnie) Vautrin

February 23, 2008 @ 11:26 pm | Comment

@jeb & youguys

The answer your are giving in your post seems to come from someone that has received an overdoses on nationalism during your education.
I dare to guess you are between 15 and 30
(I am 44 if you like to know)

years old. That should match the time period the CCP decided to use nationalism in the education as a substitute for ideological legitimacy.

Your massive use of Ad Hominen argument is astonishing. You use it for deflecting any argumentation or for denying any trustworthiness to those who do not share your viewpoint.

Be careful with nationalistic or ethnic centric mindsets. It is a very dangerous stuff… for yourself.

About the homosexuality of the Dalai Lama. Could you provide the sources? Could you enlight us about homosexuality in Buddhism? I really do not know…

On the other hand. Not all religions (nor societies) have the judeo-christian prejudices to sexuality.
Ever hear of Antinous or from the golden Teban phalanx?

February 23, 2008 @ 11:40 pm | Comment

By the way (I almost forgot the original topic after all the race garbage), a reasonable article in the New York Times today is speculating that Spielberg’s—and other—attention-getting actions are having some result, and you’ll notice that China is currently changing tack to “interfere” modestly in Darfur: a marked change from a long-standing practice. In other words, they’re saying it just may be working as desired. Who knows, but it probably won’t hurt China, won’t hurt the Olympics, and is likely to have beneficial effects in Africa.

February 23, 2008 @ 11:45 pm | Comment

Chinese accepting criticism from westerners is like a man being lectured by a rapist to stop beating his wife.

Busybody, meddlesome whites should get the hell out.

Etc, etc.

Jeb, I just want to remind you that by now, your contributions more or less conform to the textbook definition of racism.

February 23, 2008 @ 11:47 pm | Comment

“By the way (I almost forgot the original topic after all the race garbage)”

@Sam_S, Amban,

This is the Open thread.

There is only one race , the HUMAN RACE.

@ecodelta

I think you are confusing me with Jed.
I’ve been quoting what white folks said to me and mostly from a 60 year British Member of Parliment all night … check it out, he is Scottish and he is great!
http://www.spiderednews.com/GeorgeGalloway.htm?vid=251200

February 24, 2008 @ 1:35 am | Comment

Jeb:
“Come on – tell me one person who has being ‘murdered’ by the government over say the past ten years.”
Jeb previously:
“countries inherit guilt – certainly.
If you are part of a country and identify with that country then you share in its glories and its digraces. For instance, China would be well within its rights to demand reparations from Britain for the Opium War.”

I think a great question would be: how does the statute of limitations fluctuate so greatly in these two examples?
You consciously limit government crimes in China to 10 years (and they indeed certainly still continue); however, the Opium War is still fresh in your mind.
Sorry, Jeb, but I hope you’re joking.

February 24, 2008 @ 1:59 am | Comment

Ferin: “no unnecessary foreigners.”
With unfortunate comments like these to well thought-out statements, you’re really letting your true colors shine.

February 24, 2008 @ 2:01 am | Comment

“Who are these westerners? Which countries do you mean?

Jeremiah, stop nit-picking and being evasive. You know who I am referring to and exactly what I mean. ”

I agree, Jeremiah, stop being so nit-picking and evasive. You now very well he is talking about those rapists and butchers from Monaco and Andorra.

February 24, 2008 @ 3:03 am | Comment

“A Westerner genuinely interested in advancing the cause of human rights should donate half his wealth (which is imperialist derived) to an Asian or African.”

Jeb, could you please tell me your bank code and account number? The Prince of Liechtenstein wants to send you some money.

February 24, 2008 @ 3:10 am | Comment

“Jeb, could you please tell me your bank code and account number? The Prince of Liechtenstein wants to send you some money.”

Clap, mor, show us more smartness of yours including your inflated ego thereafter.

February 24, 2008 @ 5:40 am | Comment

Just wondering if Spielburger and Mia would like to do a compaign for the people of Diego Garcia.

February 24, 2008 @ 5:42 am | Comment

Has anybody heard of Spielburger’s view on Iraq and Middle-east?

February 24, 2008 @ 5:45 am | Comment

Jeb,

It’s not nitpicking. I’d ask a student in my class the same question. ‘Westerners’ doesn’t tell me anything. It’s like saying ‘Easteners bombed Pearl Harbor.’ You have a lot of hatred, it’s spewed out indiscriminately and I’m interested in learning more about it. Words matter, even in the middle of a rant. Are you angry at those countries which occupied parts of China during the 19th and 20th centuries (not all of whom were ‘western’)? Is your target the industrialized countries in today’s North America and Western Europe (those darn Lichenteiners again…)? Or is it more of a visceral reaction to people of a certain race?

Hongxing,

My first response to your use of such a horrific term was to delete the comment, and Richard still well might do so, but for the moment, I’m leaving it up as a monument to who you really are. Thanks for sharing.

February 24, 2008 @ 6:34 am | Comment

As for Spielberg,

I respect the man’s right to say whatever he wants, but I think the timing here is a little too pat. He has the fourth installment of a billion dollar movie franchise coming out in less than five weeks. I can’t help but think that there was a calculation made between losing revenue from his movies in China (where rampant piracy significantly affects earning potential) or face the possibility that activists might picket/take action using the opening of Indy IV as a platform.

My recollection is that Spielberg was one of a handful of celebrities, along with Tom Cruise, who supported Bush administration policy towards Iraq back about five years ago.

He may have changed his mind since, if only because when you make a tough choice, look around, and see Tom Cruise on your side making the same choice, it’s probably time to reevaluate things.

February 24, 2008 @ 6:45 am | Comment

@Jeremiah

As I have been following this thread, I just finished Lucian Pye’s The Spirit of Chinese Politics. It is a controversial book on China’s encounter with modernity, which is full of unsupported statements about Chinese political culture. Yet, as much as I dislike many of Pye’s conclusions, the behavior of certain neo-Nationalist cyber trolls here more or less confirm Pye’s findings. If you have the book handy, I would direct your attention to the chapter on “The Discovery of Hate.”

February 24, 2008 @ 6:52 am | Comment

I respect the man’s right to say whatever he wants, but I think the timing here is a little too pat. He has the fourth installment of a billion dollar movie franchise coming out in less than five weeks. I can’t help but think that there was a calculation made between losing revenue from his movies in China (where rampant piracy significantly affects earning potential) or face the possibility that activists might picket/take action using the opening of Indy IV as a platform making China/Darfur the issue of the inevitable press junket promoting the movie and dragging down the numbers.

So you agree that Spielberg’s “boycott” is not because of his “conscience”, but because of him worried about his profit and his image in the USA, especially in the liberal world of Hollywood.

I used to support some things of the Liberals. Today, their behavior is very very disgusting.

I think Republican party is much more mature in this case. After Spielberg’s “boycott” announcement, President Bush immediately said in public that he does not support mixing Olympics with Politics, and he hopes to visit Beijing for the games.

That is why Mao said it’s much easier to deal with Republicans than with Democrats. They are simply a much more mature party.

February 24, 2008 @ 7:25 am | Comment

I think a great question would be: how does the statute of limitations fluctuate so greatly in these two examples?
You consciously limit government crimes in China to 10 years (and they indeed certainly still continue); however, the Opium War is still fresh in your mind.

Sure, I’m extremely supportive of the idea that the CCP should pay back their debts for any crimes they may have committed to the CHINESE people. And so should the Colonialists.
I’m happy of course because in BOTH cases the CHINESE people will be the beneficiaries.

However there is a qualitative difference between the CCP and the Colonialists. The CCP dragged a feudal, middle-ages, pre-modern, semi-colonial nation, carved up by 8 different foreign powers, kicking and screaming into the twentieth century. Between the years 1949 to 1976, life expectancy increased from 35 to 68. It now stands at 71. Literacy rates are now about 90% and I think about 96% for those under 30.
China would not be the nascent economic and military superpower she is today, with atomic weapons, a capable military and the most incredible economic growth probably ever seen in the history of the world, had it not been for the CCP. You see without independence, China would have gone nowhere, or at best much like India is today.

The Colonialists of course were in China just to plunder to build up their own countries. China was just one of many victims of course.

FIFTY MILLION, yes 50,000,000 Africans and Asians (a very conservative estimate) were killed by several Western powers in the 20th Century alone. This figure is likely to be significantly revised up soon.

EVERY brick in USA and Britain is stained with the blood of AFRICAN and ASIAN slaves, forced labourers, and coolies. The wealth of the West was built on murder, butchery and plunder the sheer scale of which the world has never seen.

WESTERNERS LECTURING CHINESE ON HUMAN RIGHTS IS ANALOGOUS TO NAZIS LECTURING ISRAEL TO TREAT PALESTINIANS BETTER.

February 24, 2008 @ 7:51 am | Comment

you’re really letting your true colors shine

The fact that I know the majority of China expats are only there to be treated like a god by the locals?

February 24, 2008 @ 7:59 am | Comment

People like Amban, Kevin, Mon instead of just debating the points me and others like me make, just attack the reasons for my ideas, not those ideas themselves.

But this is good. It proves of course that they have no argument. They just want to muffle their opponents instead of engaging in honest debate.

The definitive history of the atrocities of Western whites against colored people the world over is yet to be written. Most of the data is available. When such a book is published it will be a ‘bombshell’ of a book that the Jung Chang book was not.

Westerners lecturing Chinese on human rights is analogous to Nazis lecturing Israel to treat Palestinians better

February 24, 2008 @ 8:03 am | Comment

Are you angry at those countries which occupied parts of China during the 19th and 20th centuries (not all of whom were ‘western’)? Is your target the industrialized countries in today’s North America and Western Europe

Jeremiah, of course I am angry at those industrialized countries which built up their wealth on imperial plunder. But I have absolutely nothing against people because of skin color or race. Absolutely nothing at all. I am angry at those citizens from those countries which benefitted the most from imperial plunder coming to my country and self-righteously lecturing us on how to run our own affairs.

Of course as I have said, genuine constructive criticism should be welcome. But most of those foreigners who bash China do so, not from a desire to help, but to indulge their own feelings of racial and moral superiority.

And to answer your question Jeremiah, Romanians, Bulgarians, Greeks are fine by me.
But so then are English, French and Americans.
Its not the race or nationality that matters. It is the attitude

February 24, 2008 @ 8:12 am | Comment

Ferin: The fact that I know the majority of China expats are only there to be treated like a god by the locals?

This is completely 100percent true. In Hong Kong it is still bad now, but worse before 1997. These westerners enjoy all the hospitality of the locals, get paid way more than the locals for the same work, yet love to do nothing more than sit back and laugh at the Chinese and make snide comments.

One telling example. I formerly worked as a Structural Engineer at a large engineering consultancy which will remain nameless. There was this white American ho, who was in the marketing side, who would always act disgusted about the ‘materialism’ of the local Hong Kong people. Yet this ho was making HK$70,000 per month plus housing, in a place where the average salary for localss about $15,000. Yet she had the audacity to lecture the local Hong Kong chinese on being materialistic!!!

On a grander scale of course, the West will lecture China on pollution and military spending when of course the West is the most egregious offender in these categories.

Just shows the utter racial and moral superiority in the thinking of all too many Western whites, even today.

February 24, 2008 @ 8:22 am | Comment

Here is a glimpse at American society: everyone knows the story of the Native Americans, but they do not know that the large-scale rape and humiliation of natives has never ended.

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2007/04/25/AR2007042502778.html

34% of Native American women are raped. Why? Is it because Native men are inclined to do so? No.

86% of the perpetrators are white. 29 percent of *all* Native Women are raped by white (sometimes black) men. Pretty terrible.

The reason why things are like this is because these men know that law enforcement on reservations are underfunded. So they can force sex on young girls for prolonged periods of time and get away with it.

The vast majority of men in Southeast Asia having sex with little girls and boys are from Europe or America.

Some male China expats are no different.

http://www.thestar.com/News/GTA/article/302721

More than 44,970 computers nationwide are actively engaged in trading child pornography… Canada ranks fourth behind Luxembourg, the Netherlands and Bermuda for the highest distribution rates per capita of such illegal images.

With more than 570,000 computers sharing child porn in the United States, that country ranks seventh per capita worldwide.

In Canada, pornographic images involving children have been traced to more than 205,305 unique IP addresses. In Ontario, more than 63,338 unique IP addresses have been linked to such images.

The boy molested in Korea, the girl raped in Japan, are not exceptions to the rule. Think of all the children who do not report the abuse.

February 24, 2008 @ 8:35 am | Comment

Blah blah blah blah blah.

I swear to god all of you are a bunch of useless vainglorious drama queens without an iota of common sense spread between the lot. No one has a clue how to actually end the Sudanese conflict since they are all too busy pointlessly appropriating blame. Spielberg this, Mia Farrow that, Sanction this, Resolution that. The best method for ending civil war in Sudan is as follows.

1) Retrain the Sudanese Army officers and NCO’s with a more professional code of ethics (this means no more allowing soldiers to prey on civilians). They can be trained at Western military academies or China.

2) Integrate foreign military advisers into the ranks of operational Sudanese Army units to evaluate performance and provide guidance.

3) Provide low interest developmental loans and favorable terms of trade to develop Sudan’s economy and generate more revenue for the government.

4) Provide MORE cost-effective weapons for the Sudanese army tailored for the suppression of rebel forces. This means more armored vehicles, more helicopters, more tanks, artillery, more heavy support weapons such as automatic grenade launchers, heavy machine guns, rockets, etc. The army should be able to bring to bear significantly overwhelming force against rebels using technicals. The problem is not the presence of weapons flowing into Sudan, it is that there are not enough of them.

5) A military solution is THE BEST SOLUTION to Sudan’s problems, negotiating with various rebel warlords is a waste of time.

6) Expand the government’s zone of control from Northern Sudan and sweep southward and proceed to drive all rebel forces out of the country. Destroying them outright is preferable but considering the nature of the opposition, they will likely a) disintegrate only to reform later or b) cross the border and hideout in a separate nation. This leads to the next point.

7) Either lock down the borders so that the rebels cannot re-enter Sudan or alternatively if viable, give pursuit to rebel forces sheltering in neighboring countries and destroy them there.

8) Disarm all remaining militias within Sudan, these even includes pro-government forces. The state must retain it’s monopoly over the exercise of force within it’s borders or is isn’t a government worth it’s salt.

The reason that Sudan’s conflict has been so long and bloody is because no one side has been able to achieve a decisive and overwhelming advantage. The simplest and best solution is to assist the Sudanese government in eliminating all organized military opposition in it’s entirety, this is the only way to bring rebel factions to the negotiating table and the only way to make sure they do not renege.

February 24, 2008 @ 8:40 am | Comment

While I agree that China does deserve to be criticized over its Dafur policies, so too does the United States and the European Union – all of this is about competition over access to oil in the Dafur region – a struggle that goes back some way. Janson, in an article published last year, has an interesting article on the CIAs role in Dafur, which is worth a read:

http://www.countercurrents.org/janson090507.htm

The current singling out of China by the Western press is designed to humiliate and to pressure China into backing off a little – both the US and the EU would very much like to limit China’s influence in the region.

February 24, 2008 @ 8:44 am | Comment

“both the US and the EU would very much like to limit China’s influence in the region.”

Yep. European greed knows no bounds. They stole what, 47 million km^2 from various Native populations and know they want Sudan, Iraq, Iran, Antarctica, the moon, Mars, the list is endless.

Want want want want want

February 24, 2008 @ 8:48 am | Comment

Jing – I find your last comment above to be very interesting, and well worth considering.

February 24, 2008 @ 8:49 am | Comment

*now
*the Moon

February 24, 2008 @ 8:49 am | Comment

It is said that, “He who has the gold makes the rules. ” Well, how does one get the gold in the first place?
The foremost Profit-before-people, calamity-opportunism advocate, Economist Milton Friedman once said, �Only a crisis produces real change. When that crisis occurs, the actions that are taken depend on the ideas that are lying around.� He also BSed everyone with his “trickle down economy.”
There is a relationship between massacres, between crises, between major shocks and body blows to countries and the ability to impose policies that are actually rejected by the vast majority of the people on this planet.
Friedman was an adviser to Thatcher, to Nixon, to Reagan, to the current Bush administration. He tutored Donald Rumsfeld in the early days of his career. He advised Pinochet in the 1970s. So he had enormous influence. He was described as the Karl Marx for capitalism. He saw shopping�buying and selling�as the highest form of democracy, as the highest form of freedom. And his best-known book was Capitalism and Freedom. Money is freedom and free-speech actually facilitates the generation of crisis which ultimately serves only the capitalists.
In response to Francis Fukuyama’s, �History has ended. Capitalism and freedom go hand in hand,�
Margaret Thatcher said, �There is no alternative.� When Bush cries freedom, it is the battle call for more bloodshed to advance Capitalism.
Do not for a second fall for the propaganda spread through the Capitalist-owned Media. No, Darfur is not about Human Rights, America being no paragon of virtue, it is really about sabotaging China’s steady supply of oil from Sudan.

February 24, 2008 @ 9:45 am | Comment

“They stole what, 47 million km^2 from various Native populations and know they want Sudan, Iraq, Iran, Antarctica, the moon, Mars, the list is endless.”

You are certainly talking about the CCP. Thanks for telling us. It’s really good to have an inside man to keep us up-to-date.

“The vast majority of men in Southeast Asia having sex with little girls and boys are from Europe or America.”

And we all know this statement will be backed up by 1993 FBI statistics.

“More than 44,970 computers nationwide are actively engaged in trading child pornography… Canada ranks fourth behind Luxembourg, the Netherlands and Bermuda for the highest distribution rates per capita of such illegal images.”

And all those movies are sold, in broad daylight, on the streets of Chinese cities.

“The boy molested in Korea, the girl raped in Japan, are not exceptions to the rule. Think of all the children who do not report the abuse.”

Exactly right! Especially those raped by Chinese government officials.

February 24, 2008 @ 9:53 am | Comment

The biggest mistake China made was sending in businessmen to Sudan to buy oil instead of what America & the UK do so well by sending in tanks to steal the oil.

February 24, 2008 @ 9:58 am | Comment

Close this thread. Now.

February 24, 2008 @ 10:02 am | Comment

Amban, that’s a fine idea. The risk with these anything-goes open threads is that they can easily devolve into chaos. I’ll put up another thread, maybe later today, but I think we have totally exhausted the Darfur topic. We all know where the other stands, and any more comments about it will just be beating a very dead horse.

February 24, 2008 @ 10:11 am | Comment

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