China Idiocy Alert

Rick Ruffin, satirist

Rick Ruffin, satirist

This may well take the cake. I mean, a skyscraper cake with a whole jar of maraschino cherries on top and enough Cool Whip to swim in. What can one say?

History has dealt China a dirty hand. It had famine, it had Mongol invasions, it had British colonization and the Opium War. It had Japanese invasion and the Nanjing Massacre. It is no stranger to atrocity. And it never had enough land. Not good land, anyhow. Fate dealt it the Gobi Desert.

In spite of these limitations, Mao Tse-tung managed to consolidate the country, to kick out the European and Japanese colonizers, to instill a one child policy (which India has yet to do), and to embark on the Great Leap Forward. And what a leap it has been.

Yikes. Could someone in this modern world actually look with a straight face at the Great Leap Backwards and praise it? Could someone actually say, without irony, that Mao’s leadership was so positive it helped balance the “dirty hand” China had been dealt? Could they? (I guess it becomes slightly more believable when the same person claims it was Mao who implemented China’s one-child policy, which began in 1979. I was always of the impression Mao was quite dead by then.)

This is via the Marmot, who caustically remarks,

Classic, Rick. Just classic. As my good friend Hamel asks in the KT comment section, this is satire, right?

Would that it were so.

______________

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: 73 Comments

The strict one-child policy was started by Deng after Mao’s death. The government had discouraged people from having more than two children towards the end of the Cultural Revolution, when Mao was still alive.

August 29, 2008 @ 5:57 pm | Comment

Only one suggestion

Get facts right next time, hope this one is unintentional

August 29, 2008 @ 7:17 pm | Comment

The Chinese Communist Party As an Investment Fund

If you like money, you will know that there are many investment funds in the world. For example, there are stock funds, mutual funds, etc etc etc. This post wants to discuss the Chinese Communist Party from a financial investment viewpoint.

If you are not good in finance, let me teach you some things. First, to judge if an investment is good, there are three ways

1) comparing it to a standard, average index
2) look at its ranking among other similar investments
3) look at its short term, medium term, and long term performance.

Number 1 is very important. Usually for a stock fund, it is usually compared with the index of SP500. If it is stronger than Sp500, then it is considered a good investment.

Second, it is important to compare the stock only to other similar investments. If you compare a money market fund to a stock fund, it is stupid. Even in the best years, the best money market fund is worse than the worst stock funds.

Lastly, only a fund that performs well in short, medium, and long terms alltogether is consiered a good fund. Usually long and medium term performance is more important than short term performance.

Using these standards, it is not hard to discover that:

1) Under the leadership of CCP, China avoided civil wars or internal splitting. In the past 59 years, there was no civil war or internal collapse in China. This is not something every government can do. Just look at the number of internal splitting or civil wars in the past 57 years in the world in countries such as Sudan, Zimbabwe, Russia, Indonesia, Georgia, Czech Republic, Mozambique, Argentina, Iraq, Israel, Palestine, Lebanon, etc. All of those countries have been suffering from internal/external warfare, social collapse, color revolutions, assasinations, terrorism, etc. How unfortunate it would be to be a citizen of those countries and wake up everyday and have to deal with being exploded to death on a street market, shot by a rebel militia on the street, starving to death, moving to a border as a refugee living in a tent, walk through UN/US “security forces” and “security checkpoints” on the streets, lining up every day on the market for a ration of bread and potatoe, etc.

2)The economic performance of the “Communist Party Fund” in the past 10, 5, and 1 years all exceed world average performance. So it is a fund that performs well in short, medium, and long terms. This I do not need to elaborate on. Compare UN and CIA data on the per capita TV onwership, phone ownership, access to healthcare, access to clean water and food, electricity generation, wage, etc, between China and other comparable 3rd world countries like India, Vietnam, Brazil, Argentina, Cambodia, Romania, Bulgaria, etc.

3) The speed of reduction of China’s poor population and illiterate population (both absolute numbers and proportion to population) far exceeds world averages. Compare UN and CIA data on the per capita illiteracy, infant mortality, disease, malnutrition rates between China and other comparable 3rd world countries like India, Vietnam, Brazil, Argentina, Cambodia, Romania, Bulgaria, etc.

4) The speed of increase in quality of life and life expectancy of Chinese population far exceeds world averages.

5) The speed of increase in Chinese people’s degree of freedom (both nominal and effective) far exceeds world averages. Many of you may not know this, but 35 years ago, any tea house in Beijing would have a bulletin board written by the government that said “Do Not Discuss Politics”. Today, no such bulletin board is there, and people can discuss politics much more freely. And today’s ratio of political prisoners to population is only a fraction of the number in 1949.

6) The increase of China’s status and image in the world exceeds world averages. In the ten biggest world news agencies (does not include China’s xinhua news), there is a 30% increase in articles about China from 2005 to 2008. In those articles, 75% of them are overall positive about China. In fact, China is the second most frequently mentioned country in world news, only after the US. In world news agencies, positive articles about China far exceeds positive articles about America, Europe or Japan. If you look at the situation in 1949, China was very rarely mentioned in world news articles, and the mentions were 75% negative.

7) The understanding of China by world’s people. In 1949, a typical image of Chinese in world’s people’s minds was someone with a long pigtail and slant eyes and looks very weak and clownish and can be pushed around easily. In 2008, 2/3 of all Chinese depicted in movies, tv, and books were in a positive light. After the Olympics, this trend will only strengthen. I have already many co-workers and friends who were not interested in China before, and now want to ask me about history and culture of CHina and want to travel to China. There is an American redneck who after watching the Olympic Opening in China, said : “I now have a new found respect for China”. On an American forum after people watch the Opening Ceremony on NBC HD, said : “Yes, I know we are supposed to talk about Tibet, about huamn rights, etc. But #@*! it, this is the most fantastic and awe-inspiring thing I have seen in my adult life.”

Overall, the Communist Party fund exceeds the market average, and and the CCP is a legendary manager of China’s development. We believe in this manager, and we believe its future performance can be sustained and increased. So my recommendation for this fund is: BUY.

August 29, 2008 @ 9:34 pm | Comment

Using Ricky’s impeccable logic:

History dealt Germany a dirty hand, too. They had the firebombing of Dresden, the Treaty of Versailles, and World War I, and limited Lebensraum. Well, no good Lebensraum, anyway. In spite of these limitations, Hitler kicked out the foreigners and the Jews and launched a Thousand Year Reich. And just look at Germany today! What a Reich it is now!

August 29, 2008 @ 10:39 pm | Comment

Obviously, Math reckoned that a thread titled “China Idiocy Alert” would be incomplete without one of his diatribes.

@Math

So, according to you, Argentina as well as Romania and Bulgaria (both EU members since last year) are still Third World countries. Interesting! Apart from that, you used to be a lot more entertaining. Try harder next time!

August 29, 2008 @ 10:47 pm | Comment

To be fair, after reading the whole comment by Math, it wasn’t a diatribe, just another stupid comment on how great China is compared to the rest of the world.

August 29, 2008 @ 10:56 pm | Comment

Math:

1. Did you ever hear of the “cultural revolution” or the “great leap forward?” No civil war or violence in China, are you insane?

2. CIA data are very interesting sources for doing comparisons of countries. Unfortunately, the intangible qualities of life cannot be measured with such data. Do you actually travel outside the third ring of Beijing to any part of you China? Health care? What health care? Education? What education? You got one thing right….China is a 3rd world country [with super power pretensions].

3. See number 2 above.

4. Acceleration is an important specification in cars and maybe even in economic growth, but it really mean that much over all, if the baseline from which the acceleration occurs is at or near zero.

5. Oh good, so now you can actually conduct a conversation. What sources are there to inform that conversation? CCTV, China Daily, Xinhua? Chinese textbooks? Being able to talk freely about nothing is still nothing.

6. The news media in most developed countries are corporate entities that make a profit. Their reporting is an arm of the huge investments that have been made in China to increase their corporate profit. It is in their best interest to report positively. A country full of 1.3 billion political prisoners without access to competent health care (if any health care at all) without access to competent education (not the propaganda that passes for education in Chinese schools and universities) without the rule of law and filled with institutionalized corruption is ripe with news that needs to be reported and yet very little real news actually makes it out of China. Your statistics are meaningless.

7. The brightly colored circus (2008 Olympics), a whole slew of skyscrapers and countless acrobatic troupes do nothing to improve China’s standing. Until China and the Chinese people free themselves of the yoke of totalitarianism they will forever be looked upon as prisoners.

My advice, proceed cautiously, do your research, travel extensively, meet as many people as possible and hope that there will be a change in the future, but don’t buy!

August 29, 2008 @ 11:12 pm | Comment

Speaking of Hitler,

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=R2WBhpqHukY

Beautiful and sad music aint it? if there is ever going be another Hitler, it’s gonna be in EU, the seed is there, the soil is there. Dont drag China to that supremacist crap, there is no chinese version of code 14/88, there is no chinese version of hugely popular site like Stormfront, in my entire life I never heard one chinese says similar things like “Because the beauty of the White Aryan woman must not perish from the earth”. Chinese cultures have a lof of dark places, but fearing the Chinese genes to be tainted is not one of them, just because we have a CCP in power doenst mean you can sh/t all over us.

August 29, 2008 @ 11:14 pm | Comment

@Coldblooded3

Some of Hitler’s greatest admirers (actually a lot of them) are Chinese people, but you wouldn’t know that, because – like Math – have never been there.

By the way, nobody was sh/tting over you or on you, the original post was about a stupid columnist writing for Korea Times.

August 29, 2008 @ 11:37 pm | Comment

Those were the last two paragraphs. They were dumb. But the first few paragraphs made some good points in a nicely witty way, I thought. Maybe he submitted his piece, celebrated by drinking a bottle of whisky or smoking something mindbending, and then his editor demanded another 100 words. How else to explain that wayward crackpot stuff at the end?

August 29, 2008 @ 11:40 pm | Comment

@mor,

“Some of Hitler’s greatest admirers (actually a lot of them) are Chinese people”

You have a name of one of these “greatest” Hitler’s chinese admirers? I mean if they are the greatest, they should be famous right? like Saga is the clip I posted, or Ian Stuart? David Lane? or Death in June and Laibach?

August 30, 2008 @ 12:24 am | Comment

Kim, few detest Bush as much as I do. But you cannot compare the US government under Bush with the CCP. There are seeming similarities, but the difference in scope, scale and venality are vastly different. We still do have rule of law. We still have the freedom to oust the bastards. Those comparisons Ruffian was drawing do not hold water. I plan to post in detail about it soon. And I repeat, I hate Bush and what he has done to America. But Americans face nothing even close to what is business as usual in China. And did I mention I hate Bush, too?

August 30, 2008 @ 1:32 am | Comment

there is no chinese version of hugely popular site like Stormfront

Of course not, coldblood. But is that because there are no racists in China, or because the Chinese Internet is censored? Most American abhor sites like Stormfront, but what makes America great is that it tolerates their existence.

August 30, 2008 @ 1:34 am | Comment

@Coldblooded3

Wrong choice of words, my bad. I’m not a native English speaker and I didn’t know that a “great admirer” has to be a famous person. Yes, I do have names, but I’m not going to post them on the Internet. Anyway, everybody who has spent a considerable amount of time in China, knows that there are a lot of Chinese people who admire Adolf Hitler, much more than in any European country I ever went to. You’ve most likely never been to Europe or to China, you’re just another American clown posting comments on things you don’t understand.

August 30, 2008 @ 1:42 am | Comment

By the way, Coldblooded Clown No. 3, Saga is a Canadian band and Stormfront is an American website. So that’s what you based your ridiculous theory on: “if there is ever going be another Hitler, it’s gonna be in EU, the seed is there, the soil is there.” Next time, use your brain before you start writing comments!

August 30, 2008 @ 2:10 am | Comment

Richard,

1.Racists are different from supremacists, of course China has racists, but they are more xenophobists than supremacists. Some chinese are racists because they are close-minded and selfish, which can be corrected over time, not because they think Chinese is a better breed, which would be a terminal disease.

2.China has extreme right-wing websites too, like Tiexue.net, which is just as popular as sina. They have all kinds of nutjobs, but these nutjobs there dont say things like how pure chinese blood is, or how angelic chinese babies are, or how the beauty of the chinese woman must not perish from the earth.

3.Everybody is riding on CCP’s heavy cesorship over internet, that’s fair because they do and its dispecable. But it doesnt hurt to understand a little bit more how it works. CCP cyber police gets to work based on EVENTs/NEWs, not on ideological frames.

4. Tolerating Stormfront doesnt make America great, it makes America LOOK great, in reality it makes people get hurt, even die, see “American History X”. But it’s your country, we respect your choice.

August 30, 2008 @ 2:29 am | Comment

@mor,

I am Chinese not American Saga is Swedish not Canadian and Stormfront has a section for each and every shitty european country you sick fart dumbtruck! uhhhhhh I hate stupid people!

August 30, 2008 @ 2:37 am | Comment

1. What a lot of hogwash! According to you, even Chinese racists are better than racists elsewhere. Now, isn’t that racist?

2. What Chinese fenqing say in their comments is much more scary. I suggest you learn reading Chinese.

3. “CCP cyber police gets to work based on EVENTs/NEWs, not on ideological frames.” You are an even greater comedian than Red Star. We are going to have a lot of fun with you.

4. It’s your country, too. You are posting from the good old US of A, aren’t you?

August 30, 2008 @ 2:37 am | Comment

The People’s Daily Strong Nation Forum actually reminds me a lot of Stormfront. Just my two cents.
Also,
“I was always of the impression Mao was quite dead by then.”
Indeed, but Mao’s wonderful and radiant “spirit” was still alive at the time, and remains so today. I don’t think that there could be anything more Maoist than encouraging one generation to have more kids than they can handle, and then punishing the next generation with draconian restrictions on reproduction. The utter hypocrisy and ineptness would have certainly made the Chairman proud!

August 30, 2008 @ 6:23 am | Comment

Off-topic but by way of example, Chiang Kai-shek was a bit of an admirer of the German chancellor, there are even rumors (I say rumors, because I haven’t seen the sources) of correspondence.

More recently, and in terms of casual conversation, I have observed (as have others, I believe anecdotes are included in either Pomfret’s Chinese Lessons or Hessler’s Rivertown, neither of which I have on hand at the moment) a curious fascination with Hitler that tends to emphasize the unifying strongman aspects of his personality while giving curiously little thought to the ‘systematic genocide’ part of the equation.

As for the piece: I agree with the author. The United States did all of those things and it was terrible. Does this the absolve China of any complicity in similar or equally terrible acts? I think even the most hungover first-year philosophy student can see the fallacy here.

Furthermore, China was not as cursed by geography as the article would suggest. Mark Elvin, who has done some brilliant research on China’s ecological and environmental history, argues that, in fact, long periods of relative stability coupled with early advances in agricultural technology and two long east-west river systems actually were such a boon to agriculture that China’s population grew to near unsustainable levels at a very early stage, what Elvin calls the “high-level equilibrium trap” (Elvin, 1973) By the middle of the last millennium, centuries of intensive agriculture and land-use projects along with rising population resulted in ecological changes in the land (cf. Elvin’s latest book, Retreat of the Elephants) which left people increasingly at risk from natural disasters, drought, etc, among other deleterious effects.

Finally, and this seems to obvious to even bother with, but…listing the GLF as an unqualified acheivement is more than a little curious, it’s positively mind-boggling.

Just my 3 cents.

August 30, 2008 @ 7:49 am | Comment

Who is Rick Ruffin anyway? I mean other than a complete moron.

August 30, 2008 @ 8:20 am | Comment

To Math

Your logic is so DUMB and incoherent that I suspect you are genetically linked to Mao and breast-fed by the communist China. Try this: shout “China is great” three times every hour, and China will be the greatest country in the world with satisfied people.
I suppose if you believe what you wrote, I can sell you my above proposal to help china.

August 30, 2008 @ 8:48 am | Comment

Math clearly sees Ruffin as a challenger to his satirical crown and therefore had to respond.

August 30, 2008 @ 9:26 am | Comment

From a “Chinese” point of view, you could say that Hitler had many good qualities. He kickstarted the economy, recaptured lost territory, reawakened the Germans’ sense of patriotism and gave them their pride back. In many ways, he was probably the kind of leader many people hoped for while China was weak and divided.

To be fair, if there is any admiration of Hitler it probably isn’t because of racism or persecution of Jews.

August 30, 2008 @ 2:06 pm | Comment

Yes, if you actually talk to these Hitler loving Chinese you would know they don’t really think about the entire genocide, Aryan and occultism aspects. So a quick 5 minute will fix their Hitler loving ways for example by telling them that Hitler’s ideals was (also telling some of their weird Aryan, Summerian super-race fantasies wouldn’t hurt either)

Actually, I remember reading a quote from Hitler where he said that he can “live with” the Chinese and Japanese. LOL. Until the end that is…

Stalin >> Hitler…

August 30, 2008 @ 2:25 pm | Comment

Good points, Peter. Mao actually performed quite similarly in his first few years in power, and like Hitler, had he died within three years of his taking over he’d be remembered as a great success.

Does anyone actually read Math’s comments?

August 30, 2008 @ 2:33 pm | Comment

I skim ‘em.

Yeah, who is this Ruffin character? Has he made any backyard steel lately?

Sheesh.

August 30, 2008 @ 2:56 pm | Comment

I’m getting sloppy. Coldblooded was right about one thing: Saga, the Saga he was talking about, is a Swedish singer and not the Canadian band of the same name. Apart from that: Stormfront is offered in many different languages, but that doesn’t change the fact that it’s founder and current webmaster is Stephen Donald Black – an American. It certainly doesn’t show that “if there is ever going be another Hitler, it’s gonna be in EU, the seed is there, the soil is there.” About Coldblooded Clown No. 3′s claim that he is Chinese, only he himself knows who or what he is, but I bet he is not posting from China.

August 30, 2008 @ 4:20 pm | Comment

Many years ago, I got “shit-faced drunk” at a Christmas party and started shouting “Long Live Chairman Mao!” If only Dick Muffin could have been there….

August 30, 2008 @ 8:11 pm | Comment

Randle Pereemboon:

“Compared to Nigeria, China’s human rights record is not that bad. So, we should suspend judgment.”

“Compared to the Republic of Congo, China’s human rights record is not that bad. So, we should suspend judgment.”

“Compared to Rwanda, China’s human rights record is not that bad. So, we should suspend judgment.”

August 30, 2008 @ 8:18 pm | Comment

I suppose China, these days, is the topic of the day. But I get so frustrated when people speak of and about China without understanding its history. First, China was never colonized by any power; there were so-called concession zones, but it had never been colonized a la India or most of Africa.

Of course, needless to comment, the Great Leap Forward was a disaster that accounted for the deaths of some 20 million people. In demography class, we used to graph the birth rate and death rate of China, and the anomaly of DR > BR from 1958-61 was manifest…

August 31, 2008 @ 4:33 am | Comment

Well, if you just consider the name “Great Leap Forward,” it does sound good. Please note I am TRYING to be satirical here.

August 31, 2008 @ 9:59 am | Comment

Are you people crazy?

You think America is going to recover and get back on the path again of being the shinning beacon of democracy once the Neo-Con’s get out of office? Think again.

The shadowy U.S government (controlled by non-U.S entities and U.S elites. It’s not a fucking theory, wake the fuck up!) are getting bolder and bolder. You are blind if you don’t see this. If you sit in your comfy chairs in China and do not act, they will destroy the U.S, and the world along with it.

China has problems, yes. But the problem with the U.S.A is so much more dire, and much much more evil, for it concerns the survival for the majority of the planet. The U.S is in dire straits at this moment!!! We are on the edge of an abyss, and yes, it’s fucking deep and straight into the depth of hell itself.. Peer into this depth, you stare directly into the eyes of … satan himself.

The plan of the shadowy government is manifesting itself daily. There were restraints back in the 60′s and 70′s. But now it is clearly than ever that they are pass the point of no-return. Look at this:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JYqQ6Nz8Ggk
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CBJwsdsMwxY

WAKE UP!!!

August 31, 2008 @ 10:29 am | Comment

China bashing has become a very popular sport for both the Western media and some of the westerners which haven’t set foot on the Chinese soil. The relationship between the western media and its china-ignorant supporters is a very dangerous one which i will outline as follows: John Smith, a regular china basher, has never been to China. The reason he likes to bash China was completely because the media tells him that US has a huge trade deficit with china, lead paint is found in toys, bad human rights, and of course communist is bad. The media on the other hand is encouraged to provide its readers china bashing materials because it SELLS. It sells because it needs a scapegoat for all their economic and social woes.

With that logic in mind, i will try to address 3 main issues through my own experience. Yes, i’ve decided to live in China after 10 years being in the US. I’m currently living in Guangdong province.

1) Human rights:
China has made remarkable progress in the field of Human rights. Although its not up to western standard, it is improving. The Chinese leaders put economic improvement over human right improvement is a logical and life saving choice. Everyday when i ride my bike to and from the office, i see elderly women and men crawling under the summer heat on a pile of trash trying to find things that they can sell. I thought to myself. What’s more important to these people? a full stomach or Human rights? The Chinese leaders understand this, they are set to change it by creating a better economic environment for these people and the future generation. So far, they have lift 200 million people out of poverty.

2) economy
When i was in the US, all i hear about when comes to the economy was the huge deficit and the junks Chinese people are exporting to the country. Well, the junks the Chinese people are exporting to the US keeps inflation rate low in the US. The deficit the US has with China is not going to go away. If trade deficit with china is decreased, trade deficit will increase by the same amount in another country were labor is cheaper than in the US. The US knows this. Why then do they still make such a big deal out of it? simple, because blaming someone else of all your woes. You’ll be off the hook. get this, if you promise to solve the problem by being ” Get Tough with red china”, you’ll be a president. Of course, no US presidents had fulfill this particular campaign vow. You can’t say it is not expected.

3) pollution
Pollution in china is bad. especially in the Guangdong the manufacture of the world. China is a developing country. When Japan and S.Korea was in china’s stage of development it was just as polluted or in some cases even more polluted. So when industrialization is complete in china we have alot of clean up to do, but NOT NOW. im sure you know what recently china had passed the US in carbon emission per year, and the Doha round was a failure because china is not participating on the US’s terms. It is true the china has just passed the US in terms of carbon dioxide emission, but why are you so shock? we have 1.3 billion people here and the US has 300 million people. it is remarkable that it takes china so long to catch up on that. The Doha round wants china to commit on emission reduction same as developed world. that’s not fair since the developed word emits far more carbon dioxide into the atmosphere in a per capital term for far longer. Everywhere i go in china, Air conditioning is a luxury. very few people have air conditioning units at home. those that have them, only have window units which save alot more energy. there aren’t many people own cars neither. people use scooters and bike to get around. i haven’t seen anyone own a washer or dryer yet. people wash cloths with their hands and sun dry their wet clothes.

August 31, 2008 @ 1:26 pm | Comment

“i haven’t seen anyone own a washer or dryer yet. people wash cloths with their hands and sun dry their wet clothes.”

The last sentence reveals your ignorance. If you seriously don’t know anyone in China who owns a washing machine (I guess that’s what you meant by “washer”), then you’ve either not been to China recently or you have spent the last few decades in some remote village in the countryside. I find it hard to believe that you stay in a place where you have Internet access, but there’s not even one family there who owns a washing machine. You are right about the dryer, though.

And talking about those old people going through the rubbish for things they could sell: maybe they have to do this, because there is nobody to take care of them, as their children and/or grandchildren have been shot or imprisoned for talking their minds which is one of the human rights issues we are talking about. Or maybe they have to do this, because in the Farmer’s and Worker’s Paradise called the People’s Republic of China governed by the glorious Chinese Communist Party there is no social welfare for elderly people out of work, so they are left to take care of themselves which again is a human rights issue. Or maybe they have to spend their days searching through rubbish, because they spent all their money taking care of a relative who was badly injured in a working accident and neither the employer nor the government could be bothered compensating him for the loss of his arm or leg. Again, a human rights issue.

This whole “full stomach vs. human rights” argument is not only cynical, it’s actually very stupid.

August 31, 2008 @ 2:52 pm | Comment

Between British Imperialism as seen in Hong Kong post WWII and the Communists’ Great Leaps Backward and Cultural Revolution and unique manner of crowd dispersal, I wonder which the average Chinese would choose…

August 31, 2008 @ 4:43 pm | Comment

A lot of Chinese people have given the answer to that question by voting with their feet.

August 31, 2008 @ 5:33 pm | Comment

The CCP never lifted anyone out of poverty, though they have made themselves obscenely rich. What they did do – and it is to their credit – is lift the insane restrictions of the Mao era and allow their people to trade with relative freedom. This was no act of genius. It was essentially an accident, and a good one. It happened under the CCP’s watch but it was nothing they engineered or fostered. Nearly all of those who became super-rich did so with lots of Party guanxi.

Hate to say it, NJ, you’re a walking talking encyclopedia of CCP talking points. They did a good job with you. Tell me, do you also think it was also a good thing that they killed the students in Tiananmen Square so China wouldn’t have to go through the chaos that Russia did in the 1990s? “It’s a shame the students had to die, but when you look at it over the long term it was the right decision. Otherwise we would have ended up like Russia. Thanks God our rulers had the strength to stand by their convictions and save us from the anarchy of democracy.”

August 31, 2008 @ 7:53 pm | Comment

Talking against the chinese is cheap and ineffective. They will always win by the end, because the interpretation of the chinese law is predisposed toward them, especially with the flavor of nationalism added to the issue. Think of the current and past business conflicts in China, from the French food company to Microsoft to music/film distributors. Also, what many people do not know is that once you establish a company in China, you practically cannot close it, without all the improbable hassles that one has to go through, while it looks so straight-forward from the written regulation–all SIMPLY because being foreigners. No wonder the foreign investment figure continues to go up, because you can only open but cannot close an enterprise.
I think dealing with the chinese should be based on direct retaliation i.e.quid-pro-quo; any sign of weaknesses will be squeezed to the maximum by the unscrupulous officials. US and the Western countries should continue to have the critical superior military mights to deal with this crazy nation which has no morality and human values.
All the scholarships offered to them will only fuck us up eventually. To think that western civilization can coexist with communist china is only for delusional people; the incompability from morality, human value, sense of justice, and sense of destiny is so vast that the paths are not on sight of not diverging further.
Western intellectuals think and talk too much and lack the practicality to deal with this monster. Be realistic. China is not Hitler Germany. It is worst.

August 31, 2008 @ 11:47 pm | Comment

Cambridge, I disagree. Dealing with China is difficult bit not impossible, and they are in no way worse than Hitler’s Germany. They have no agenda of genocide that I know of, and levels of freedom of speech here can be surprisingly high. CAN be. If you want to make Hitler comparisons, you need to have some evidence on hand. Some of you points about the hassles of doing business with the Chinese are valid.

September 1, 2008 @ 12:14 am | Comment

This whole “full stomach vs. human rights” argument is not only cynical, it’s actually very stupid.

Mr. Mor, discrediting other’s argument by labeling it as stupid is not only unfair, but it is also a very cheap tactic. Kids do that in grammar school. I’m sure your college English professor taught you that in order to make your argument a convincing one you should support it with personal experiences or creditable sources. you have given me neither. So, I’m sure you will enlightening me with why do you think the “full stomach vs, human rights” argument is cynical and stupid, with good supporting facts of course.

To Richard:
” Hate to say it, NJ, you’re a walking talking encyclopedia of CCP talking points. They did a good job with you. ” Thank you for your compliment, and here is mine. You are doing a fantastic job of being bias critic of china. They did a good job with me? are you implying that I’ve been brain washed by the communist propaganda? My main source of china news is not the xinhua news agency because they only provide the good side of china, neither is pekingduck blog a source of information for me because the bias witter only provides the bad side of china. When a man tells me something is 100% good or 100% bad, i walk away because that man is lying to me.

what happened in 1989 is a shame. I believe strongly there were better alternatives to solve the problem. Nevertheless, the students got most of what they wanted. The way i see it, the students want Freedom, a better life, and world recognition of china. 19 years later, People in china enjoy a lot more freedom than they did in 1989, they enjoy economic freedom, a booming economy which provides a better life, and world recognition. Freedom is not free, and the students trade their life for it in 1989.

a note for all Pekingduck readers. I’m sure you are a bunch of very good china watchers. Your critiques are well founded(for most of you anyways. some went way too far), but never the less you are entitle to your opinions. But opinionated foreigners do little good in changing china. if you want to change china or at the least to have a well informed opinion of china, i challenge you to spend sometime in china to see china through your own eyes.

September 1, 2008 @ 9:58 am | Comment

what happened in 1989 is a shame. I believe strongly there were better alternatives to solve the problem. Nevertheless, the students got most of what they wanted. The way i see it, the students want Freedom, a better life, and world recognition of china. 19 years later, People in china enjoy a lot more freedom than they did in 1989, they enjoy economic freedom, a booming economy which provides a better life, and world recognition. Freedom is not free, and the students trade their life for it in 1989.

I rest my case.

September 1, 2008 @ 10:13 am | Comment

To Richard

Yes, China communist might not have the genocide plan like Hitler Germany. But the number of chinese who died during The Great Leap Forward and Culture Revolution had been estimated more than 30 million; some even goes as high as 50 million. These are their estimates. If we value each human life as the same as the other, then my assertion that communist china is far worse than Hitler Germany is within bound. Also, china is currently militarily weak, not capable to exert any forceful acts. Should it become otherwise, we could not foresee how it will exercise its power. Don’t forget that China during this communist regime had engaged wars with India, Vietnam, and Soviet, though only on limited basis.
Can you honestly say China is a responsible and fair-play nation? Living in Beijing and travelling around in China, I could not have that perception. A nation with blind nationalistic fervor!

September 1, 2008 @ 11:59 am | Comment

Can you honestly say China is a responsible and fair-play nation?

China is neither a 100% responsible and fair-play nation, nor is it a 100% irresponsible and unfair-play nation. China works for their self own interest, very much like the USA and the West. When China’s interest coincides with the West, it appears as a responsible and fair-play nation. When their interest collides, it appears as a irresponsible and unfair-play nation.

September 1, 2008 @ 3:58 pm | Comment

Fob, simply false. While there are examples of the US not playing fair, such as the Bush’s steel subsidies, the US is far less intrusive on foreign companies seeking to do business in America.To say China is intrusive doesn’t begin to tell even half the story. China is amazingly unfair to such companies, and I know, and everyone doing business here knows. There is a system of bribes and corruption that most MNCs here know they have to conform to, and even if they do they can suddenly find the government pulling all kinds of trick to make their lives hell. Simply no comparison. I have been on both sides. Doing business with China is not comparable to any other country. The only reason it’s tolerated is the vast promise of China’s untapped markets, 1.3 billion customers.

September 1, 2008 @ 4:45 pm | Comment

Cambridge, evil as the GLF was, I can’t compare the number of starved peasants with the Jews slaughtered in the Holocaust. They are at different gradients of evil. Mao’s was lees intentional and calculated – oops, accidents happen. With Hiter, it was pure incandescent evil, uncorrupted by any hint whatever of humanity or conscience, the greatest mystery of all time.

September 1, 2008 @ 4:48 pm | Comment

Richard, China will be as intrusive to MNC as their 1.3 billion customer base allows them to be. While their American cannot afford to be as intrusive as their Chinese counterpart or risk companies moving oversea. Most MNC’s objective in China is to maximize their profit without any intention to bring positive development to Chinese people, if there is any positive development it is pure accident.

There are many complaints about China’s enforcement on intellectual property right. The way I see it, they dont give shit about those IPR because it is not in the their interest. Only when China develop a mature industry that is based on IPR, then it would become their interest to enforce IPR. China will not be responsible or fair-play if it is not in their interest.

When you do business in China and make profit, there is a cost. The Chinese government, if it benefits them, will keep that cost as high as possible. But keep it low enough so that MNC will not close the factories and move to other countries.

September 1, 2008 @ 8:07 pm | Comment

nj:

“Everywhere i go in china, Air conditioning is a luxury. very few people have air conditioning units at home. those that have them, only have window units which save alot more energy. there aren’t many people own cars neither. people use scooters and bike to get around. i haven’t seen anyone own a washer or dryer yet. people wash cloths with their hands and sun dry their wet clothes.”

EH? sorry, did i read that correctly? where do you live? in the countryside of qinghai province? did you just come back through a timewarp to the eighties? you certainly do not live in any reasonably sized city, where air conditioning units are sticking out of the side of every building. you haven’t seen anyone with a washer or dryer? are you blind? or just haven’t been into anyone’s home?

“But opinionated foreigners do little good in changing china. if you want to change china or at the least to have a well informed opinion of china, i challenge you to spend sometime in china to see china through your own eyes.”

why do you think we want to change china? personally i just want to debate and bitch during quiet times at work.

September 1, 2008 @ 10:52 pm | Comment

To Si:
Yes Si, you read correctly. I chose to live in KaiPing, Guangdong province. I figured i should live in a city where my family roots started, at least for several years. Kaiping is not a big city, i’ve been to cities such as shenzhen and guanzhou, shanghai, and beijing where modernization is progressing at a neck breaking speed. These big modern chinese cities only represent a fraction of what its truly an ordinary chinese everyday life. Therefore ,if you want to have a non-bias view of china and observe first hand how government policies are affecting these people, it is logical that you should live a life where the majority of chinese people live.

I don’t think anyone can change china. not you, not me, not anyone that reads this blog. What we can do though its to have a well inform view of china. Now, we can’t have a well inform view of anything by sitting at home and read books or listen to what the media has to say about it or visit china once or twice. If china is so important to you and you care about it enough that you want it to change, are you willing to give up your comfortable life in a developed country to see china for yourself for period of several years? if your answer is no and any sensible person will say no, you are not going to know what china really is. you are,in the fairest judgment, just an opinionated foreigner bashing or acknowledging china in a bias view.

September 2, 2008 @ 8:56 am | Comment

nj:

“are you willing to give up your comfortable life in a developed country to see china for yourself for period of several years? if your answer is no and any sensible person will say no, you are not going to know what china really is. you are,in the fairest judgment, just an opinionated foreigner bashing or acknowledging china in a bias view.”

given you clearly know nothing about me, nj, that is not really the fairest judgment is it? how do you know i haven’t done what you just described?

September 2, 2008 @ 3:37 pm | Comment

NJ,

First came to China in 1997, first started living in Beijing in 2002, now have a nice little corner of a pingfang (not big, but it works) in a yard with 30 other Beijing families, with whom we have big all-yard group dinners about once a week…exactly what else should I be doing? Please enlighten me.

Oh yeah…all the families in the yard have air conditioning, too.

September 2, 2008 @ 9:16 pm | Comment

History hasn’t always dealt China a dirty hand. She also produced Confucius, Mencius, Lao Tzu, great art and literature aplenty, beautiful porcelain, the world’s strongest navy for centuries, scientific and technological inventions and discoveries from which the world has benefitted immensely, and at times a well-to-do middle class. Of course, there were eyesores aplenty as well. One ought not to focus exclusively on either the rose above or the manure below.

Unfortunately, as far as I can tell, Mao and his gang are one part rose and nine parts manure. They may have done some good, but committed all too many atrocities as well.

I love China for her ancient culture. It’s the CCP whose guts I hate.

Being an overseas Chinese born in Singapore makes me a foreigner too in NJ’s eyes, I suppose. Whatever the case may be, *I* certainly wish to see change come to China as well, if only because of my emotional ties to her by virtue of being a Chink myself, whereupon I would like to see her live up to the shining values contained in the best of her ancient culture. This will IMO make China truly stand tall among the world’s nations, far more than a hundred Olympics. And I’ll be proud to be Chinese. As it happens, the acts of the CCP have repeatedly trampled on the basic values of respect for truth and for human life, and of intellectual freedom. This is such a disappointment to me I’m now tempted simply to sever all emotional ties with China. Don’t like foreigners telling you what is wrong with you? No problem, go ahead, do all you want and ROT for all I care.

Then again, with China growing increasingly influential in world affairs today, can we foreigners afford not to care about China?

September 3, 2008 @ 12:07 am | Comment

KT, well said.

I don’t think NJ’s heart is in the wrong place and I completely understand where his worldview comes from. His perception of foreigners displaying concern about the abuse of Chinese citizens as somehow showing their contempt for China is so, so common. Such a queer and marvelous distortion, so totally absurd and so well ingrained.

September 3, 2008 @ 12:31 am | Comment

Wonder if the kind of education (or indoctrination) they’ve had might have something to do with it. Sigh…

September 3, 2008 @ 12:38 am | Comment

To Richard and KT,
Please enlighten me on how to deal with China if you are free. Thanks.

September 3, 2008 @ 9:14 am | Comment

That’s a mighty big request, Cambridge, and I never said I had a magic solution. My own strategy is to keep raising awareness the way Pan does, and not let people forget that there is more to China than shiny new buildings and smiling Olympic volunteers.

Enlightenment has to come from within. I can’t do it for you. Read Pan’s book and maybe it will come to you.

September 3, 2008 @ 9:32 am | Comment

I second what Richard said.

September 3, 2008 @ 9:49 am | Comment

To Si:
You’re right. i don’t know anything about you. if you read carefully, i didn’t claim to know you. If your answer to my question is “yes” then my latter claim doesn’t apply. This is only a small part of my claim. let’s focus on the whole of my argument. In order to give a fair critique of something, one should learn it first hand. Any critiques tinted with bias only result in more bias and eventually lead to ignorance of the subject being study. With such logic in mind, information distributors have the duty to present a fair view of the subject which the information distributor claimed to have studied first handedly in an effort to prevent bias and ignorance.

To: Jeremiah
I’m glad that you make china your home. Beijing is an amazing city, and it is also good to know that you’ve found your neighbors to be friendly. I would love to enlighten you, but i lack the required wisdom. I can only offer you my own 2 sense about finding the real china. As i have said before, only a small fraction of chinese lives in cities such as Beijing. With average income of nearly 10,000 USD per year for the Beijing dwellers, this is hardly the real picture of china. So my suggestion is, hop into your car and drive for 4 hours or so. When you’re not in the Beijing city limit anymore, pick a village to live there for a few years. Nevertheless, please give us your personal account in Beijing. What is your take on issues such as human rights, political reform and the future of china? Are you scare shitless by the atrocity of the CCP in your everyday life? please provide us with a full comparison of your native country with Beijing.

To Ong:
Let me make my position clear. I’m not against constructive criticism. I’m against bias. Either the bias takes the form of criticism or acknowledgment. I understand that completely eliminating bias is impossible, but we can reduce it. Bias information is dangerous as I had explained. it will lead to ignorance, and ignorance will lead to misunderstand, misunderstand between two countries is a catastrophe in the making. So whether you are a foreigner or a non-foreigner it doesn’t matter. you have the responsibility to reduce bias and enhance understanding. If you want china to change, come to china and change it yourself. Actions speak louder than words right?

To Richard:
It is one thing to show concern, but it is another to spread ignorance.

September 3, 2008 @ 10:31 am | Comment

NJ:

***What is your take on issues such as human rights, political reform and the future of china? Are you scare shitless by the atrocity of the CCP in your everyday life? please provide us with a full comparison of your native country with Beijing.***

It is precisely because Western countries are so rotten in so many ways with respect to human rights that I want to see China do better. MUCH better. China is becoming a major world player, and in this respect I’d far rather not see yet another rotten egg being added to the sorry list currently populated by the nations of the West with their lousy record on human rights.

I’ve actually become so disillusioned with China today that I almost couldn’t care less about what you mainland Chinese want to say, do or believe anymore. China can rot for all I care. Only trouble is, our world is now so interconnected and China so influential that whatever she does is going to have major repercussions all over the world. It was the ineptitude of the CCP that caused SARS to spread around the world. Just here in Singapore several people fell prey to the disease. So can you blame us if we’re concerned about China and want to see her change? If you don’t like that, shut yourself completely away from the outside world and go right back to the days of the late Ming. Then we won’t have to worry about you anymore. You can say, do and believe whatever you like. I’d be happy too.

September 3, 2008 @ 11:23 am | Comment

To Ong:
Wow! I’m speechless at the fact that you can change your position from ” whereupon I would like to see her(china) live up to the shining values contained in the best of her ancient culture.” to “China can rot for all I care” in such short period of time. It is even more shocking that you can totally ignore my position which I’ve stated over and over again on my previous entry by “I almost couldn’t care less about what you mainland Chinese want to say, do or believe anymore.” But it is just disgusting, how selfish you are when you mention that the only reason you concern about china it is not because of its social issues or its starving peasants. you only care about the effects china has on your country, Singapore. Let me restate my position once again. I’m not against genuine concern; I’m against ignorance which is a product of bias. I think I should add that I’m against selfishness also. In my eyes you are a foreigner, the worst kind. China will not rot because it has to prove herself to people like you.

September 3, 2008 @ 12:10 pm | Comment

NJ, I like the way you changed the goalposts on your own argument when readers called your bluff. First you said, “i challenge you to spend sometime in china to see china through your own eyes.” When some said they’ve been here for years, suddenly it became, “go live in a village for years.” I suppose next it will be, “go live in a village that isn’t on the coast and that is south of Chengdu for a few years.” Meanwhile, you’re reciting all the usual pro-party talking points. I am familiar with those. I’ve studied them. And I also studied other points of view, as in Pan’s book. So I ask again, have you read Pan’s book? Are you pleased that you can’t buy a copy of it here, at least not legally? As to your charge of “spreading ignorance,” please elaborate – what are you referring to?

September 3, 2008 @ 12:10 pm | Comment

NJ, that last comment of your was truly offensive. I’ve been very tolerant, but I am not so tolerant when people come on and tell me they don’t like me or my blog. No one forces you to come here. If you can’t see how I try to find a balance between the “anti-China” faction and the fen qing, then you aren’t reading carefully. Most of my coverage of the Olympics was positive. I even changed my post about the opening ceremony after I realized I had only seen one long and hopelessly cheesy segment that was not representative of the whole. I always strive to hear contradicting opinions and have changed my positions on several subjects thanks to the intelligent input of commenters. But I don’t need to tolerate personal attacks. So please consider yourself warned. Thanks.

September 3, 2008 @ 2:22 pm | Comment

Also NJ, is this your employer? Fascinating. Also fascinating (no, predictable) to see you’re in California.

September 3, 2008 @ 2:25 pm | Comment

NJ,

“i haven’t seen anyone own a washer or dryer yet. people wash cloths with their hands and sun dry their wet clothes.”

In 2006, 96.77 out of every 100 urban households had a washing machine. IN the rural areas, it was 42.98%.

My source is here: http://www.stats.gov.cn/tjsj/ndsj/2007/indexeh.htm

Where’s yours?

September 3, 2008 @ 2:26 pm | Comment

To Richard:
I’ve been sensor? for expression my opinion?? MY GOD!

September 3, 2008 @ 2:43 pm | Comment

Mr. Richard
I’ve never imagined that my first public censor comes from an American.

September 3, 2008 @ 3:00 pm | Comment

You aren’t being censored. No one ever gets censored here for disagreeing with me. But if you use personal attacks you will be. You put up lots of comments and I didn’t touch a single one even though we have very different opinions. If you go the route of name-calling and saying how much you dislike my site, please don’t expect me to welcome you here with open arms.Thanks a lot for your understanding.

September 3, 2008 @ 3:06 pm | Comment

I think the CCP that you want to change so badly has the same mentality too. I would like to see the CCP’s rigid mentality change in the future. But thanks for your hospitality.

September 3, 2008 @ 3:24 pm | Comment

NJ, I am not a government, I am a blogger who has set up a site where I let people comment according to my rules. Free speech is everything to me. Everyone is free to set up a blog and run it exactly as they choose. Some have no comments. Some have comments that have to be approved first. Here you are, commenting away, and I don’t interfere unless you flagrantly take advantage of the courtesy. And even then, I always let you and other commenters back. I’m a pretty easy guy to get along with. Is the CCP as easygoing? Maybe you should ask one of these guys.

September 3, 2008 @ 3:46 pm | Comment

NJ,

Feel free to search the posts on this site and my own. You come across as a simpleton, relying on identity to make up for a lack of intellectual heft. I would find it sad if it weren’t so tiresome.

Now off to prepare a lecture on Manchus, ethnicity, and the early Qing Empire for tomorrow afternoon…

September 3, 2008 @ 5:39 pm | Comment

To NJ

1). 200 million raised from poverty
I think China claims 300, not 200, millions raised from poverty. Have you ever thought that in the first place the communist was the one that made the whole Chinese in China became indigent. I met many older generations of entrepreneurs who escaped to HongKong, Indonesia, Thailand, and Taiwan with their money after the communist took over. Well, if someone took all your wealth and gave back 20 bucks to you for your bus fare, we wouldn’t call him a nice guy, would we? So to me, this propaganda of raising 300 millions above poverty line is absurd.

2). Economy
“Get tough with red China and you became U.S. president.” I don’t get what you are saying. I haven’t heard anything from the presidential candidates so far about China; which is disappointing, because it is important and I want to hear it from the horse mouth. Only Obama briefly mentioned about the safety issue of Chinese products. The problem in the US now is that it is preoccupied with Iraq. It should really focus on China, and counter-attack on the disguised trade protectionism done by China. Perhaps, the US is indebted to China on North Korea issue and its support to fight terrorism.

3). Pollution
If you travel around China, you can see and smell that the chinese suffer immensely. Their fish, clamp are dead. They cannot do anything to challenge the local party bosses.

I find it so out of context that only the communist can improve China; and the worst is there are many ignorant people who believe it. For those Chinese dispora and the chinese alike, do remember that communism and china can be seen in different realm of appreciation. Communism consistently builds itself by distorting the truth and tarnishing human character. And, China can certainly develop well without having to take that path, miring the chinese into sordid and unscrupulous character along the way. Chinese are ignored in the world not because they are poor, as most of the mainland chinese believe; rather because the world does not appreciate the unscrupulous mentality.
By hosting the Olympic, the Beijingness has learned a valuable lesson of queueing, not spitting, etc, which overall have been positive. And hopefully the next step the chinese government can put a stop to its well-disguised “screw the foreigners” mentality, so that the chinese can grow psychologically normal with sound confident in world community, instead of showing off its petty newly acquired wealth as sign of inferiority complex.

The latest development unfortunately is that the communist starts to blame foreign corporations for abusing “low” domestic wages and benefits, and mistreating the “common workers.” Insane!

September 4, 2008 @ 3:48 am | Comment

@NJ

Why don’t you answer DOR’s question? He’s given you concrete numbers and a source and now you just ignore him. Don’t they teach basic manners to kids in California?

September 5, 2008 @ 7:12 pm | Comment

[...] in. What can one say? History has dealt China a dirty hand. It had famine, it had Mongol invasionshttp://www.pekingduck.org/2008/08/china-idiocy-alert/Social injustice ‘killing on a grand scale’: WHO AFP via Yahoo! News A “toxic combination” of [...]

September 17, 2008 @ 9:08 pm | Pingback

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