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Sep 28

(Letter) Does Hu Jia deserve the Nobel Peace Prize?

Written by guest on Sunday, September 28th, 2008 at 3:39 pm
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Six chinese has recieved the Nobel Prize (seven if you include Dalai Lama). This year there is some speculation that the Nobel Peace Prize may be awarded to a Russian or a Chinese. According to the director of a Norwegian peace institute, Stein Tonneson, the chinese environmental activist Hu Jia is a top Chinese contender.

The Nobel peace prize committee is made up of former Norwegian parliamentarians and is supposed to be independent of the government or party politics. Although it has managed its impartiality sucessfully, it has at times, been influenced by politics or pressure from powerful nations. For instance, Gandhi, the non-violent Indian independence fighter was strangely never awarded the peace prize, apparently due to fear of British displeasure at the time.

Chinese winners of the Nobel prize:

* Tsung-Dao Lee, Physics, 1957 – Chinese American
* Edmond H. Fischer, Physiology or Medicine, 1992 -Swiss-American(born in China)
* Daniel C. Tsui*, Physics, 1998 – Chinese American
* Gao Xingjian, Literature, 2000 – French Emigre
* Chen Ning Yang, Physics, 1957 – Chinese American – See Photo Above
* Samuel C.C. Ting, Physics, 1976 – Michigan-born Chinese American
(* Dalai Lama, Peace, 1989 – Tibetan-born residing in India)

Asians winners of the Nobel Peace Prize:

* Sato, Eisaku – 1974 – former Prime Minister of Japan
* Mother Teresa – 1979 – Indian citizen
* Aung San Suu Kyi – 1991 – Burmese opposition leader
* Belo, Carlos Filipe Ximenes, Ramos-Horta, José – 1996 – East Timor
* Kim Dae Jung – 2000 – Republic of Korea
* Muhammad Yunus – 2006 – Bangladesh

Hu Jia is a 35 year old Beijinger who has worked for humanitarian, environmental and Hiv/AIDS issues since the early 1990’s. He addressed the European Parliament on November 26th, 2007 using his web-camera while under house arrest since spring 2006. In his testimony to the European parliament he said:

“It is ironic that one of the people in charge of organizing the Olympic Games is the head of the Bureau of Public Security, which is responsible for so many human rights violations. It is very serious that the official promises are not being kept before the games.”

Only one month later, on December 27th he was arrested at his home accused of “subverting state authority”. On April 4th, 2008, he was sentenced to three and a half years in prison on a charge of “inciting subversion of state authority” for posting articles about the human rights situation in the run-up to the Olympic Games on overseas Chinese websites.


There are currently 13 comments highlighted: 16523, 16570, 16586, 16604, 16629, 16640, 16653, 16659, 16663, 16687, 16688, 16691, 17599.

368 Responses to “(Letter) Does Hu Jia deserve the Nobel Peace Prize?”

  1. admin Says:

    For Asians winners, you left out Le Duc Tho, Vietnam.

  2. FOARP Says:

    I do not know who the other contenders are, and I think that many of the Nobel prizes have become a somewhat debased coinage, but if the question is “should we approve of Hu Jia’s actions?” My answer is a whole-hearted “YES”.

  3. wukong Says:

    It would be laughable to say Hu Jia has contributed much or any to world peace. But Nobel Peace Prize isn’t about world peace, it’s very much a political award. So if those former Norwegian parliamentarians (and western politicians in large) feel a particular need this year to sick it to the China “regime”, Hu Jia will fit the bill nicely.

  4. Kai Says:

    No, the Nobel Peace Prize should be given to the CCP, for overcoming incredible near-insurmountable odds to maintain a harmonious society in the face of domestic and foreign opposition and sabotage.

    You think I’m joking?

  5. S.K. Cheung Says:

    I am not familiar with Hu’s exploits, and have no idea if he’s deserving. But if he wins, would he be the first to receive the award while incarcerated? That would represent a historic “first”…the CCP should be able to get some PR mileage out of that one.

  6. S.K. Cheung Says:

    To Kai,
    that’s a good one.

  7. sophie Says:

    Here is a link showing:
    http://www.anti-cnn.com/forum/cn/thread-39512-1-4.html

    1. a letter that Hu Jia wrote to the German Chancellor Merkel. In the letter he seems representing ‘hundreds of millions of Chinese Buddhists wish Dalai Lama back to China… ‘

    2. Hujia accepted about USD 180,000 from NED (the National Endowment of Democracy). this info. is available on NED website.

    http://www.ned.org/grants/06programs/grants-asia06.html#china&

    Beijing Zhiaixing Information Counseling Center
    $179,113*
    To operate a diverse program promoting accountability and human rights. The work of the Institute will include legal aid, investigative reporting, activist training, and human rights documentation related to HIV/AIDS and other public health threats.

    3.He also testified on human rights in China, given on 26 November 2007 via conference call to the European Parliament’s Human Rights Subcommittee.

    Chinese are hardly know Hu Jia. He is only well-known outside China. If Chinese know what he has done as mentioned above, most of them will consider him a traitor, as comments in this link showed. Be honest, i tend to think the same.

    but, when i mentioned what he had done to a french friend, he’s like ‘what is wrong he did those’…i didn’t know how to answer.

  8. ChinkTalk Says:

    I agree with Kai. The Chinese Communist government has done more for world peace than any other countries in the world. Despite the Western accusations of human rights, corruptions, Darfu,Tibet etc, – while I do agree that there are serious problems, but no one nation is innocent of faults, I sure would like a finer examination of how the Chinese were treated under British rule in Hong Kong, – China has done more for world stability than other countries. The Italians have the decency to pay Lybia $5B for its colonial days. Shouldn’t the British pay something to the Hong Kong Chinese. I thought the “peace” prize is recognition for work on bridging opposing forces – like in the case of Henry Kissinger and Le Duc Tho, not one that instigates conflict. If one gets a peace prize for simply “fighting” for social justice, environement, etc. than I should get the “peace” prize by going out everyday and complain about every injustice that happens along the way. The more difficult task is really bringing peace to the Middle East for example. There is no democracy involved in the Nobel prizes because they are determined by five anonymous members in secrecy.

  9. skylight Says:

    SKC,

    Two persons have recieved the Nobel Peace Prize while incarcerated:

    1. Carl von Ossietzky in 1935 had been imprisoned in Nazi Germany. He had fought in WWII and was highly critical of the German militarism, established the German Peace Society, and later warned against Nazism. The award to the German pacifist lead to violent outbursts from the German government, who issued a prohibition against any German receiving the Nobel Peace Prize. He was sent to a concentration camp in 1933 while suffering from Turbeclosis. The German government declared publicly that Ossietzky was free to go to Norway to accept the prize, but secret police documents indicate that Ossietzky was refused a passport. In May 1936 he was sent to the police hospital in Berlin because of his serious tuberculosis. He died in Berlin’s hospital Nordend, still in police custody, on May 4, 1938, of tuberculosis and from the after-effects of the abuse he suffered in the concentration camps.

    2. Aung San Suu Kyi in 1991, won after she had been arrested. She was put under house arrest since July 1989. In 1990, her party won the general election and earned the right to become Prime Minister, but she was prevented from assuming the role by the Burmese military junta.

    “It is not power that corrupts but fear. Fear of losing power corrupts those who wield it and fear of the scourge of power corrupts those who are subject to it….Fearlessness may be a gift but perhaps more precious is the courage acquired through endeavour, courage that comes from cultivating the habit of refusing to let fear dictate one’s actions, courage that could be described as ‘grace under pressure’ – grace which is renewed repeatedly in the face of harsh, unremitting pressure….It is not easy for a people conditioned by fear under the iron rule of the principle that might is right to free themselves from the enervating miasma of fear. Yet even under the most crushing state machinery courage rises up again and again, for fear is not the natural state of civilized man.”

    -Freedom from Fear speech (1990) by Aung San Suu Kyi.

  10. skylight Says:

    @Chinktalk

    The Nobel Prize Foundation is a private institution in 1900 on the will of Alfred Nobel, the person who invented dynamite, who later became a strong pacifist. All Nobel Prizes in sciences and arts are awarded in Sweden, including the highly regarded Nobel price in Economics, while the Peace Prize is awarded in Norway. I don’t think it was ever meant to a democratic institution, whatever you mean by that (another United Nations with veto for the superpowers etc??).

    You can learn more about the process of nomination etc. at their informative website:
    http://nobelprize.org/

  11. skylight Says:

    @Chinktalk

    Please be careful about facts. The five Committee Members of the Peace Prize are not anonymous as you claim.

    http://nobelpeaceprize.org/eng_com_mem.html

  12. Daniel Says:

    Wow, that was a good quote from Aung San Suu Kyi. Thanks for posting it skylight.

    The Nobel Peace Prize is a little shaky in it’s prestigiousness for me. Most of the others, like chemistry, physics, economics, etc. is sort of understandable. When I read how these prizes, the apt of looking at it changes over time, and how much of an honor it is for their professions, it’s a joy to read who won and why.
    However, I agree with some people how the peace prize is …words are hard to describe. Some of my friends cringe when Al Gore won it. Plus, there’s so many organizations/people that probably do deserve the honor, but I guess there wasn’t enough attention to them from the media/political/corporate/NGO world, or not the pick of the straw.

  13. S.K. Cheung Says:

    To Sophie:
    so a PRC citizen who criticizes China is a traitor? Geez, that’s a pretty strict standard. Either that, or it doesn’t take much to be considered a traitor in your eyes.

  14. S.K. Cheung Says:

    To Skylight #9:
    thanks for the info. Potential PR opportunity lost for China.

  15. Otto Kerner Says:

    I did initially misread the headline as “Does Hu Jintao deserve the Nobel Peace Prize?”

  16. sophie Says:

    To S.K. Cheung,

    I didn’t express myself properly. ‘Traitor’ is not a right word. Let me explain a bit more:

    From general Chinese point of view, people recognize that China still have a long way to go in terms of human right, democracy… and are working on it. if you visit Chinese forum, you can see many people openly critizise the government in a much harsh way. But what people don’t accept is that his associating with outside forces/organizations. Chinese people want to decide their own destiny, they don’t want to be lectured, forced…

    I have lived abroad for 10 years. i know this Chinese point of view is difficult for people in the West to understand.

  17. skylight Says:

    Sophie is absolutely right, Hu Jia’s crime seems to be that he collected human rights violation information and distributed it to both people in China and people overseas. Obviously it is not only “Chinese people” who don’t accept this behavior, but also the Beijing Court which provided as evidence against Hu Jia that he had written five politically charged articles which was posted overseas (One of the articles cited in the sentence is this one: http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2008/04/04/AR2008040402982_pf.html) and he had given two interviews with foreign media.

  18. FOARP Says:

    All I can say is that having watched the videos made by Hu Jia of him and his family (including his newly born child) being followed and intimidated by the Ministry of State Security, I can only think that he is an extremely brave man and deserving of the highest praise. World peace prize? I don’t know, but I know he has my admiration.

  19. MoneyBall Says:

    If he does win, it’s a symbolic move on the Nordic side, and a reward for Hu’s bravery, not for any substantive works. I dont know what he has achieved, if anything, on improving the wellbeings of local Chinese, besides some rather superficial rhetorics entirely aimed to appeal to the western audience. The fact that, it seems true now, he was on the payroll of NED, wont sit well among Chinese, even the liberal ones like me. I admire dissidents, but not the professional ones.

    But wherever he comes from, it’s not right to throw him in jail, sometimes CCP’s stupidity knows no boundary.

  20. wukong Says:

    @Sophie

    If Hu Jia was indeed funded by NED, than he’s a unregistered foreign agent. In US, he would be jailed for god knows know many years, especially since he’s Chinese. Wen Ho Lee anyone?

  21. DS Says:

    People like Hu Jia and Wan Yan Hai are much like the tank man 19 years ago. Brave but mostly symbolic. They should be supported because they are fighting for the basic rights. It was wrong for the government to arrest them. If they were really bad apples, they would be exposed in the public arena quickly. But they are honorable people. You don’t have to agree with their views (I don’t), but they are doing what their hearts tell them to do. However, the Nobel price seems a bit too much, and may even back fire.

  22. Greypowered Says:

    Sophie,

    This specific Chinese point of view wouldn’t be so difficult to accept by many in the West if there weren’t these other Chinese point of views, people like Hu Jia, who feel that they need external help to make their voice heard, because, otherwise, they simply get completely censored, if not brutally silenced. And he isn’t the only one. Without these insider Chinese human rights activists, most of us, in the West, wouldn’t know anything about human rights abuses in China. And I get the feeling, from your initial post, that many Chinese themselves have a hard time understanding why some, among them, would want to turn to the outside for support in their fight for more justice and freedom. The only reason they seem to see for this kind of behavior is national treason on the part of these activists, who, obviously, must be paid by outside secret organizations trying to undermine the Chinese regime.

    I understand that many Chinese wish that all debates about these various political, social, economic and ethical problems in their country would take place behind closed doors, away from Western eyes and ears, because of the European colonial past (and American recent behavior abroad), which, in their view, denies Westerners any legitimacy to comment on the present Chinese evolution, give advice or even support to segments of the political spectrum inside the country. However, this seems to me totally unrealistic, considering that China is at the same time claiming its place and role on the international stage on an equal footing with the other nations, especially Japan, India, the US and the EU. If China wants to participate in global politics and economics, it will also have to be ready for criticisms from the other countries’ citizens and even some bashing, as a major world power. I mean, all major world powers get bashed every once in a while. Ask the Americans, who have been ashamed to even acknowledge their nationality in many European countries since 2001, or Russians, who have been feeling constantly humiliated by Western attitude towards their own evolution since the end of the USSR, and even more now that they are reclaiming respect for their national pride with their hands on the oil/gaz tap.

  23. TonyP4 Says:

    The late uncle Deng should got one or two. Who else can lift 300 million out of poverty in less than 30 years?

  24. TonyP4 Says:

    Hi Sophie, 30 years ago, many Chinese starved to death. Thank God, not any more. Is this the basic human right? I’ve written the following just for fun a while ago when arguing with some Chinese bashers, so it is not 100% correct and the English is terrible.

    ——————-

    China, the human right lover

    * Contrary to popular belief but a fact.
    30 years ago, many Chinese died of starvation, did not have a roof over their head…
    Not now anymore.
    Are these the basic human rights?

    * Why you’re lied to.
    The media wants to create controversy to sell their stuffs.
    The politician wants to establish common enemy, so you ignore more important problems.
    The offense companies have more reason to expand.
    They assume their citizens do not think.

    * Why US is human right violator.
    How many human beings of the world we killed in last year by our offense?
    How many citizens die of obesity as we encourage “good” food?
    How many poor remain to be poor for generations due to our generous welfare system?
    How many children to be killed every year due to our lack of gun control law?
    How many teenage mothers we encourage starting from the top politicians?
    How many Indians stay in the reservation forever by providing them with no work but unlimited alcohol?
    How we use up the world’s oil and blame China who uses less than ¼ of ours per capita?
    How we blame China for the negligible military expenditure compared to ours?
    When millions are donated to the politicians by special interest groups, how can they make unbiased decisions for their citizens?

    The list is endless.

    * China has its own problems and we have our own. Let each work on her problems and we’ll have a better world.

  25. MoneyBall Says:

    @Greypowered,

    Getting help from outside is one thing, accepting money from outside is another. It destroys your credibility. If I know the admins here get money from any political institutions, I will quit coming here immediately.

  26. wukong Says:

    @DS

    The Tankman represents the unyielding Chinese spirit, he’s a true hero. He wasn’t out to be famous, he was holding a plastic grocery bag when he tried to stop the column of tanks.

    On the other hand, Hu’s an opportunistic megalomaniac with delusion of grandeur. He spoke of representing “hundreds of millions of Chinese Buddhists wishing for Dalai Lama’s return”, and he’s also collecting some handsome dough from NED on behalf of AIDS victims. Isn’t he something?

    BTW, the Tankman was never run over by the tank. In fact in the full video that was rarely shown on western TV, the tank swerved a couple of times to avoid hitting the guy. In the end, the Tankman was led away by a bystander. The tank driver is no less a hero than the tankman.

  27. S.K. Cheung Says:

    To Sophie #16:
    yes, the thought process to which you refer does seem distinctly Chinese. And one I discarded long long ago. Others haven’t, and that is their prerogative. The day that Chinese in China are allowed to express Hu-style opinions freely, and not only in the anonymous confines of the internet, then there will be no further need to air dirty Chinese laundry to the world. But that day hasn’t come yet.
    I agree with Moneyball and DS, that a Nobel seems a bit much. But the CCP response to his transgressions, whatever they were(speaking to foreign media? Publishing overseas and online? Gasp!), also seem a bit much.

  28. ChinkTalk Says:

    Greypowered #22 -“Without these insider Chinese human rights activists, most of us, in the West, wouldn’t know anything about human rights abuses in China.

    I find it funny when the Students of a Free Tibet – White Canadians, Americans and British, unfurled a banner on the Great Wall of China advocating human rights for Tibet when some freely admitted that they had never been to Tibet.

  29. Jim Says:

    Greypowered makes an excellent point when saying that China, in wanting to join the international stage, needs to face international criticism. That’s the whole point of criticism: to suggest the existance of discrepancies and fallacies, to illuminate them. It’s a necessary part of the ongoing need to find balances. It is brutal; it has to be or it would not work.

    So we understand China’s wish to be uncensored: as Sophie says, “Chinese people want to decide their own destiny, they don’t want to be lectured, forced…” Nobody wants their dirty laundry aired. But should we let the US’s domestic and foreign policy unchecked by international pressure? Or closer to Chinese hearts, should we just let the Japanese government to internally decide whether to acknowledge war atrocities, without external criticism? What would South Africa be like now if the apartheid regime had not faced international rebuke and sanctions for years, and if people like Mandela had not received external support?

  30. Bob Says:

    @Jim – “in wanting to join the international stage”

    Well, a handful of *elitist* (snicker) western countries do not an international stage make.

    Side note: Wow, I love the new edit function. Good job admin!

  31. yo Says:

    I agree with the sentiments of others who say it’s symbolic. Does Hu Jia promote peace in the world, I don’t think so. Looks like the committee who awards these things are looking for a poster child like Al Gore with global warning. I agree with Al Gore, but he was just the spokesman and not deserving of the award.

    @Bob
    yeah, I just noticed the edit function too, and I’m using it to add this note in. Great job admin!

  32. S.K. Cheung Says:

    To Yo:
    I know Al Gore was the famous face, but I thought the prize actually went to some global warming committee of the WHO or UN, or something.

  33. ChinkTalk Says:

    Jim #29 – “Greypowered makes an excellent point when saying that China, in wanting to join the international stage, needs to face international criticism. That’s the whole point of criticism: to suggest the existance of discrepancies and fallacies, to illuminate them. It’s a necessary part of the ongoing need to find balances. It is brutal; it has to be or it would not work. ”

    I really like to see a Western leader stand up and criticize Canada for the treatment of our Natives. Why Phil Fontaine does not get the Nobel Peace Prize. How many people know who Phil Fontaine is.

    I used to hate being Chinese, I used to hate China and refused to have anything to do with Chinese. But now I come to realize that it is just unfair and unjust the way China is being treated compared to Western nations. If the West wants to talk about equality and justice – show it by action not just by talking.

  34. yo Says:

    SKC,
    No, he got the prize too. A PR stunt if you ask me. I remember because on Hannity and Colmes, Sean Hannity was trashing the Nobel prize and saying how a terrorist got the noble prize before so Al gore getting it means nothing…he later goes on to say that if he received the noble prize, he we give it to the troops who are deserving. 🙂

  35. Michelle Says:

    Chinktalk 28: “White Canadians, Americans and British, unfurled a banner on the Great Wall of China advocating human rights for Tibet when some freely admitted that they had never been to Tibet.”

    *huh?* So if we haven’t gone somewhere we can’t protest about conditions there? Lots of people protest against the Iraq/US war without having been to either place. Is that funny?

  36. DS Says:

    @Wukong:

    I am regretting the light reference to the tank man. He is one of the greatest heroes of our time, and should be referred to only under most extraordinary circumstances. I have not read about Hu Jia enough and put my mouth ahead of my brain. You are probably right in this instance.

    One point I am trying to bring forward is that China is strong and admired enough now to tolerate some different voices. I understand the enormous pride and ultra sensitivity with regard to external criticisms. However, hypothetically, no matter how efficient a government is and how caring its people are, no one is perfect. There might be places that are missed, and sufferings ignored. If one was to pick up an issue and work on it, it may not be a bad thing, although their manners may be irritating. If someone gets money from the outside and uses it on the things promised, why is it a bad thing? I donated money to the earthquake with genuine intention to help. Certainly, if someone breaks the law in managing the money, he/she should be punished accordingly.

    It is my view, naïve perhaps, that different voices in a large and strong country like China are healthy over the long run, because they keep a government honest. For the ultimate good of the Chinese people, I believe these things should be encouraged. Some people may do things that look insulting to the others, but the final yardstick is to see whether they serve the interest of the country. I might have missed some intricacies in this complex balancing act. Please advise if you have time.

  37. S.K. Cheung Says:

    To Yo:
    didn’t know that. Thanks for the info.
    Ah, Hannity. People like him keep Stewart and Colbert employed. Here’s hoping Hannity has another good 50 years. By then, I’ll be more concerned about bodily functions than political satire.

  38. yo Says:

    @Michelle
    You can, you just lack credibility, especially if you went out of your way to travel 1,000 miles to prove your point. In regards to Tibet, credibility imo is even more important because the sources of information available have credibility issues on both sides. In regards to your Iraq comment, the same charge was leveled at Barrack Obama so it’s an issue.

  39. S.K. Cheung Says:

    To DS:
    well said.
    “I understand the enormous pride and ultra sensitivity with regard to external criticisms” – maybe you can share that understanding with me someday, cuz I certainly don’t get it.

  40. jack Says:

    @ThinkTalk

    I find it funny when the Students of a Free Tibet – White Canadians, Americans and British, unfurled a banner on the Great Wall of China advocating human rights for Tibet when some freely admitted that they had never been to Tibet.

    What they love is not the “free Tibet” itself, but the concept of “in love with freedom of Tibet”.

  41. yo Says:

    @SKC
    lol, I found out about the hannity comment on the daily show 🙂 Actually, I’m moving away from the daily show and going back to traditional sources of news. I feel very intellectual reading the new york times 🙂 now all i need is my latte.

    @ALL
    Speaking of lattes, I don’t know if I missed it, but I would like to request a post about how this whole milk scandal is playing out in China, what are people saying, how is the blogosphere reacting?

  42. S.K. Cheung Says:

    To Yo,
    say it ain’t so! Traditional news doesn’t have a moment of Zen, or the Word. Best 5 minutes in TV, IMO.

    If you’re in China, you might want to lay off the lattes for a while. Unless you’ve got really strong kidneys 🙂

  43. Daniel Says:

    Hey yo,

    There’s already posts and tons of online discussions regarding the milk scandal and the reactions from some netizens about it. Apparently one of FM’s own, written by bxbq, is quite a “mouthful” I guess.

    On another note, any major figure…let alone a powerful country, is going to face a lot of criticisms from all sides, even if some of them have questionable content or just plain nonsense. For example, well, let me explain sometimes how some vocal people think. Many already mention this where there’s nothing wrong with people who live thousands miles away and talk quite critically about other places, but I have to agree in part that it is hard to really trust someone who either hasn’t actively been a part of that place or hasn’t took a lot of time to study it. Not to say that their opinions don’t matter but it’s like common sense in regarding certain cases.

    Others are very specialized, where their knowledge and experiences are really valuable for some topics but not necessary for others. For example, I noticed how others mentioned the rote-memory system of education and the criticisms regarding it. I don’t know exactly why, but I did read this one articles by a non-Chinese teacher who appears to have been on the Mainland for sometime. I’m not sure what she taught but she wrote a bit of the rote-memory and other quirks but offer reasonable explainations. Her opinions were that it would be very hard to remember all those characters without using some methods of rote-memory, and possibly the teachers applied this to other subjects. The other part was the expectations of the students, and of themselves, were a little different (not wrong just different) than teaching other places which may play a part in these cases.

    Sometimes, especially those in developed societies because a lot of occupations/activities are very specialized and to find people who are “well-rounded’ is actually a little bit harder because upbringing and personal beliefs can affect that. Whenever they see things in places they aren’t too familiar with, of course, as analytical as well are, there’s going to be some judgement yet at times, they will recognize strongly certain aspects because of their lifestyles, which if not taken into account other issues, may not present a balanced view of things. People do that a lot in their own societies, so imagine what it is like in other places. Not everyone is like this, but this is just some of the problems people might have in analyzing places or why some people are like that.

    Usually, I trust the older folks and their a tad bit more, especially for a lot of the topics this blog expresses about.

  44. Daniel Says:

    Retype:

    *Usually, I trust the older folks and their judgement a tad bit more, especially for a lot of the topics this blog expresses about.*

    There’s a lot you can learn about from them that many of us would have ignore or take for granted. This could help when we try to take issues in consideration of how they actually work for people in the past and the differences with today.

  45. Michelle Says:

    yo:
    “In regards to Tibet, credibility imo is even more important because the sources of information available have credibility issues on both sides.”

    I agree to *some* extent, going there is important. However, if I went to Tibet, I wouldn’t see much of anyone’s ordinary life, I recon. I don’t think having been there necessarily ups your credibility – many people have gone there and don’t know about the history and culture of the place and just go around on some tour because either that’s what they want or that’s what they have to do.

    I think it would be very funny indeed if you can get those protestors to admit that they haven’t read about Tibet’s past and present and don’t know how it’s run, etc.

    On the flip side – Would you agree that Chinese people who have not been to Tibet also have limited credibility when talking about Tibet, as as you say there are credibility issues on both sides? I would argue not necessarily, which is why i don’t wholeheartedly agree with the original quote.

    Anyhow, I think I can say people who have lived there for a while have more credibility usually. Not tourists.

  46. ChinkTalk Says:

    @Michelle
    @Jack

    Do you know who Phil Fontaine is?

  47. Michelle Says:

    Daniel:
    “Sometimes, especially those in developed societies because a lot of occupations/activities are very specialized and to find people who are “well-rounded’[is difficult]

    Slightly off topic, but… As far as trends in education go, this particular problem (increased specialisation, reduced broad foundation) has been discussed for a while in ed and higher ed circles in the US. I think both the US and China are suffering from this problem – young adults know quite little about the world in general because they have focused on only one thing without much broader perspective. I was pretty blown away when living in Europe at how non-tedious the late teens, early 20s set is.

    There are differences in the education systems of US and China, but I don’t think this (students not well rounded) as one of them.

    As for what you said on rote learning, quite interesting – do you have the link?

  48. Michelle Says:

    @Chinktalk

    Yes….
    Not much though.

  49. Charles Liu Says:

    Sophie, Skylight, I agree with you. If Hu Jia did political work without accepting funding from foreign government, that should be fine. However if he does it with foreign government’s funding, collusion, that makes him a foreign agent.

    I can’t blame the Chinese government, as such activity is also illegal in US. We have a law called “Foreign Agent Registration Act”, forbidding anyone acting in collusion with foreign governments (without declaring so, a catch-20 of sort.)

  50. S.K. Cheung Says:

    To Michelle and Daniel:
    I think at the extremes, a generalist knows nothing about everything, and a specialist knows everything about nothing. IMO, as with anything in life, one needs to find the balance, somewhere in the middle.
    I don’t know if you could say the Chinese or US education system is fundamentally better/worse in comparison to each other. But hopefully, their respective systems produce graduates that meet their respective societal needs and expectations. I can say that Canadian society (as a huge generalization) would value a well-rounded individual moreso than someone who is just book-smart. I’m nowhere near qualified to speak to what Chinese society would hold more dear.

  51. S.K. Cheung Says:

    To Daniel:
    “a powerful country, is going to face a lot of criticisms from all sides” – the Cantonese phrase is “big tree attracts more wind”, don’t know if that works in Mandarin.

  52. ChinkTalk Says:

    @Skylight

    I stand corrected on the Nobel commitee members. Thanks for the link. I should have checked my facts before speaking about it.

  53. Michelle Says:

    “I don’t know if you could say the Chinese or US education system is fundamentally better/worse in comparison to each other. ”

    Regarding education and employment, I have heard reasons why US employers value Chinese employees and vice versa, and it’s quite interesting but ultimately based largely on stereotype. On a related note: the Chinese and American work ethic (i.e. work yourself to death cuz that’s just what you do) seems valued amoung non-US/ Chinese companies in my experience, no surprise.

  54. Daniel Says:

    Oh boy, hmm…I think I may have to go further with what I said.

    I might have to take some time to google up a good link because I think where I heard that rote-memory lessons was part of an interview of an article…within a blog I think but maybe not. I was looking up something relating to Chinese education and after surfing a while I found that.

    The part about specialization is a little more broad and complex, more than students…in a way, more than what I typed. In fact, you can say that this is one of the benefits of a “modern-developed world”. The capability for people to have something to do, the specialization in work, school or any type of organization and activity can help ensure bettery productivity, regulation some may say, etc. There’s nothing wrong with it. This type of specialization attitude extends to many areas.

    One of the main points I should have typed further was how within some societies…especially the well-developed ones, the organization and local environment was such where a lot of people would be occupied their time, energy and thoughts with performing their duties, providing for themselves or love ones, leisure, the pursuit of leisure…afterwards most would be too tired to do anything else, maybe an occasional vacation, etc. In a sense, you don’t really have to or don’t have much to think beyond that. As a result, as times, whenever people try to formulate judgements on places not familar with them, sometimes they tend to look at a perspective with whatever their occupations, family beliefs and personal experiences…which can be quite specialize to a point where other important factors are left out which could help in having a balanced view of things.

    If you all think about it, people with such conditions will form a large backbone, possibly the majority, of a thriving society.

    Oh Michelle, I was on a forum where there was a huge discussion between the Chinese work ethic and stereotypes of that…it was very um…a lot to digest. The stereotypes were also very diverse I guess…I read a lot of reasons why many employers would and would not want to employ Chinese workers.

  55. Daniel Says:

    This isn’t “the” link but a link I found while quickly googling up. Some of the sentiments is a little similar.

    (It’s pretty late at night for my place, so maybe sometime perhaps?)

    http://gweipo.blogspot.com/2007/03/rote-learning-some-resources-for-debate.html

    There’s actually more reasons why education is like that, a mixture of cultural/historical/conventional influences.
    Honestly, unless the admin or staff say so, I’m not worry at all with going off-topic considering how many of the posts and comments turn out to be at the end.

  56. Michelle Says:

    Daniel, Thanks for that. I do think that we are at risk (in current ESL trends at least) of swinging the pendulum too much in the other direction. While memorising, for example, lists of vocabulary will not allow students to use the learned words naturally, it is the best way to take the first step. The problem is when students / teachers equate this memorisation with actual, full learning, which it is not. The other problem is when students / teachers jettison rote learning, which makes learning inefficient in terms of time. Gweipo has a good point about subjects like maths too, you just have to learn it or you’ll never get around to really understanding it, so rote learning is a crucial, fundamental first step.

    Sorry to everyone else for going off topic… 🙂

  57. chorasmian Says:

    I think every Chinese human right advocator face the same dilemma. If they don’t accept external funding, they can’t make their voice loud enough. If they accept it, they will lose their crdibility in their countryman dramatically. Though Wang Dan try to balance in between, I am afraid he fail in both sides.

  58. TommyBahamas Says:

    “so rote learning is a crucial, fundamental first step.”

    Totally agree,

    : jettison rote learning, makes learning inefficient in terms of time.”

    Michelle, Obviously you know what you are talkig about. I hope you don’t mind sharing your insights further on ESL, or foreign language acquisition.. I have two Chinese friends who learned mandarin from their Chinese girlfriends for the same period of time. They are both talkative male. Today, one is fluent while the other still sucks. Is it talent or methodology? I tend to think it’s the former. Musicians, I have notice, tend to be better language students given similar time & effort, but I don’t know how true, and if there are statistics on it?

  59. Greypowered Says:

    @Bob #30

    “Well, a handful of *elitist* (snicker) western countries do not an international stage make.”

    Well, I’m sure that countries like Brazil, Chile, Venezuela, Mexico, Poland, Russia, South Africa, Turkey, India, South Korea and Indonesia will love to be termed a “handful of *elitist* (snicker) Western countries”! Because, as far as I know, they are important political and economic actors of the International stage and no, they don’t consider themselves Westerners! The expressions “international stage” or “international community” basically refer to the 190 something members of the UN and other supra-national organizations that are certainly not a restricted club of “*elitist” (snicker) Western countries”. And the fact is that China isn’t only criticized by citizens of a handful European or North-American countries. Even thought it might not appear in the local Western and Chinese media, these criticisms exist in other regions of the world.

  60. werew Says:

    Shows that Nobel Peace Prize is only a western thing. All Hu Jia did was complain about China to the west that pretty much fits the western idea of Chinese human right violation and he got a lot of attention from the western media. There are a lot more more famous to the Chinese and more influential Chinese activists/lawyers that fight government corruption that the western media never picked up on since fighting corruption doesn’t strike as strong a cord with western audience as “fighting for freedom of speech, freedom of etc.”

  61. Theo Says:

    Mother Teresa (Agnes Bojaxhiu) was Albanian, not Asian.
    Hu Jia’s efforts to publicise HIV are admirable but its early days to think in terms of a Nobel Prize. There are other more worthy contenders in Asia.

  62. skylight Says:

    @Theo

    If Hu Jia (perhaps together with his wife, Zeng Jinyan who is also writing a blog) is awarded the prize, he will definitely be one of the youngest recievers of the peace prize. Perhaps the Nobel committee might want to send a signal/tribute to the importance of internet and blogging as tools to promote diverse discussions and opinions in societies with limited official press diversity. Zeng Jinyan work (and dissident bloggers in general I guess) has been called “Tiananmen 2.0” by some commentators. They use information technology to create awareness. Hu Jia himself majored in Infomation engineering at University.

    If the committee is thinking along these lines, I think a prize to Hu Jia and his wife could be deserved. In this regard, Hu Jia’s and Zeng Jinyan’s diary film, recorded on his digital video camera, could also be considered pathbreaking among bloggers.

    Some persons mentioned that Hu Jia could be considered a foreign agent since he recieved support for his AIDS work from NED. I agree that it could impact his credibility somewhat, but I really think it is neglible, because if you draw this too far, where do you end? What about chinese who have recieved university scholarships from the US government? Are they also foreign agents? Many chinese government institutions have joint projects and work with US government institutions, where they also recieve funding, are they also foreign agents? Where do you draw the line? Someone also mentioned earthquake relief, which I believe also came from foreign governments. I guess you have to look at the intention and specific issue they are supporting? If you consider AIDS work/AIDS telephone hotline to be destabilizing towards the state, and you believe this is the intention of NED and Hu Jia, then I guess you could consider him an foreign agent.

    Finally, Hu Jia is closely related to many of these famous lawyers that “werew” mentioned, and he has worked for the release of the blind lawyer, Chen Guangcheng. A prize to Hu Jia would also be an acknowledgement of their work. The article that was published in Washington Times, was actually written by Beijing laywer Teng Biao, but Teng Biao was not put in jail, because he stayed within the “line”, while Hu Jia is pushing the envelope.

    http://cache.daylife.com/imageserve/0dIQdjI6n07O3/340x.jpg

  63. skylight Says:

    Finally, on the NED funding, according to the link provided by Sophie he recieved the funding in 2006, but he has been working for these issues since mid-90s or earlier. According to an interview in China Youth Daily in 2001 (when he wasn’t considered dangerous to state stability), he says his parents supported him financially throughout the years.

    http://www.zengjinyan.org/archives/88

  64. skylight Says:

    Putting Hu Jia in jail could also be another example of attempting to “kill a monkey, to scare the chicken” by the authorities. Many Beijing “dissidents”, such as Wang Lixiong, expressed shock and fear at the unexpected 3 1/2 year verdict of Hu Jia, when he said that if this can happen to Hu Jia, it could happen to all of us. if that is the case, then the added “symbolic” value of giving Hu Jia the prize could also be an additional reason to award him the prize.

  65. Charles Liu Says:

    Chorasmian, for a long time I didn’t know Hu Jia took money from the NED/State Dept (h/t Sophie #7), and wrote off Chinese bloggers questionion why Hu Jia was able to afford a nice appartment in Beijing.

    Again, US government also sanctions against citizens colluding with foreign government, via the FARA. Most recently a naturalized US citizen from Hong Kong, Chi Mak, received 25 years in jail under this law.

  66. wukong Says:

    @skylight # 63

    According to an interview in China Youth Daily in 2001 (when he wasn’t considered dangerous to state stability) …

    You mean before he became a NED agent.

  67. Wahaha Says:

    How would Americans have thought of Martin Luther King Jr. if MLK Jr. had sought for help from Soviet unions ?

  68. Wahaha Says:

    “People like Hu Jia and Wan Yan Hai are much like the tank man 19 years ago.”

    That is an insult to those students who died on June 4th.

    Those students died for the love of their country.

    Hu Jia only wants to sell his agenda or his hatred towards CCP.

    There was a thread on anti-cnn about Hu Jia, he was considered a traitor and worthless piece of $h!t.

  69. Charles Liu Says:

    Ooo, Wahaha, have to disagree with you on this. While I fully support his activism, I also understand why the Chinese government doesn’t want to see foreign money/agenda involved in China’s domestic political affairs.

    I not sure if “hatred” applies to Hu Jia – to those who paid for it, perhaps.

    Same thing with FLG, it bugs the heck out of me that my government funneled 6 million dollars to FLG via NOGs in the run up to Bejing Olympics to vilify China in US public opinion arena (the “Human Rights Torch Relay” sold to Amnesty Internationa chapters behind AI Secretariat’s back, rehashed 70’s era “live organ harvesting” anti-Soviet propaganda.)

  70. skylight Says:

    @Charles Liu

    OMG! Are you serious in comparing Hu Jia with Chi Mak? If Hu Jia was a US born and educated citizen who later became a “naturalized” Chinese citizen as a middle-aged man at the age of 45, and then started working for the Chinese government, working at a top secret PLA military project, with secret-level governmental clearing, you might have been able to compare them.

    http://cicentre.com/Documents/DOC_Chi_Mak.html

  71. admin Says:

    Chi Mak was not charged with espionage.

    http://www.mutantpalm.org/2008/05/02/us-deploys-own-grains-of-sand-strategy.html

    And a naturalized citizen is inferior to a native born citizen?

  72. Charles Liu Says:

    Sky, you might want to compare the “secret-level governmental clearing” with Hu Jia’s “state secret”.

    Chi Mak was not convicted of espionage; there’s no proof he worked for the Chinese govnerment. The supposed “classified documents” had turned out to be public domain IEEE presentations any PLA scientist can download from IEEE.org:

    http://www.exportlawblog.com/archives/145

  73. Charles Liu Says:

    To clarify, Chi Mak got 25 years, mostly on a nebulous “Foreign Agent Registration Act” charge. In essense our government believed Mak was acting in collusion with foreign government without delcaring it, and proved to its own satisfaction that it is so.

    How does that compare to Hu jia now?

  74. skylight Says:

    Okay..let’s assume they are both innocent, then they are clearly not foreign agents and should be released!

    Do you agree?

  75. admin Says:

    If it were up to me, Hu jia should not have been arrested in the first place.

  76. RMBWhat Says:

    You people are stupid is all I can say, LOL. We’re all being watched, bet you a dollar at 1913 inflation rates, hehe.

    I for one declare that I don’t a give a flying **** and rat’s ass about China!!! I will never do any sort of spying for that country which perpetrated the massacre in 1989!!! DOWN WITH CHINA!

    This site is stupid too. I’m only here to keep an eye on these people here… And that’s the (sad?) truth.

    I don’t have anything to do with CCTV or Phoenix TV, both known consipraing entities of the CCP.

    None in my family are in the CCP, or affiliated in anyway with CCP.

    Communism is evil!!! And has absolutely nothing to do with the international banker elites @ all(all of whom knows the best way for humanity, we should follow them without question).

    I also vow to never discuss the knowledge I gained while going through the wonderful U.S public school system and state funded public universities. This I promise.

    Matter of fact. I shall inject my brain with melemaine, thus purging all cognitive abilities from my head.

  77. Wahaha Says:

    ” I’m only here to keep an eye on these people here…”

    Hahahahahahahahahahahaha ……

    Dow Jones donw 778 pts, Communism is invading USA. Watch out your own @$$ and make sure you will wipe it clear.

  78. Wahaha Says:

    “Ooo, Wahaha, have to disagree with you on this. While I fully support his activism, ….”

    admin’s note: personal insults are not welcome here no matter who the person is.

  79. skylight Says:

    Appearently Hu Jia is in bad health condition and he has a weak liver. According to a writer Hu Jin (see article in link below), becoming “famous” abroad can provide some protection for chinese dissidents, because the government will be more careful with them. Perhaps if Hu Jia is awarded the peace prize, the authorities will treat him better in prison, because then the whole world (including China) will know who Hu Jia is.

    http://www.theamericanscholar.org/au08/censor-jin.html

  80. Wahaha Says:

    admin,

    I didnt insult Charles Liu.

  81. Wahaha Says:

    “Ooo, Wahaha, have to disagree with you on this. While I fully support his activism, ….”

    If a person has been able to see the changes in China in last 15 years and accept payments from others to bash this government, he has his own agenda agaisnt this government.

    America helped Chinese in WWII, but if a person keep reminding others the bad things seveal American Marine did in China, that person has his own agenda against America.

    If Michael Moore had been paid by France or Germany to make the documentary film about Iraq War, he wouldve been a traiter or a garbage in the eyes of Americans.

  82. admin Says:

    @Wahaha

    Sorry I was not clear. You didn’t insult Charles Liu but you insulted Hujia. As a general rule, we don’t moderate/delete comments, but personal insults, name calling, or using foul language will get our attention. Thanks for your understanding.

    As a side note, we allow commentators to edit their posted comments in a 20 min time window.

  83. Wahaha Says:

    Sorry, Admin,

    I think Hujia deserves every bit of insult he has got from chinese.

    If someone demonizes Roman Catholic because priests molest children, do you think he has agenda ?

  84. Charles Liu Says:

    Wahaha, perhaps you can translate some reactions from Chinese blogsphere on Hu Jia, since FM is a bridge blog.

    One of my complaint about the expat “bridge blogs” is they only “bridge” certain POVs according to their sensitivity (which is always the “riot police beating innocent oppressed mass”, “girl drown after raped by party secretay’s son”). Basically to them THAT is the China everyone should know.

    Which is why I was so happy to find a place like FM to hang my hat.

  85. Jerry Says:

    @Kai, #4

    If you are trying to mimic George Carlin, he never would have said, “You think I’m joking?”

    If you are serious, this is just trite, cheap West-baiting. So cliché! If so, come on, say what you mean.

  86. Wahaha Says:

    Charles Liu,

    1) Hujia is a traitor, he doesnt represent the opinions of Chinese or how chinese think of chinese government. He should spend the rest of his life in jail, that is how Chinese reacted in the link posted in #7.

    2) I have no problem that others bash chinese government, like the Sanlu scandal. but please dont use individual incident to prove their points, which is pointless as China has 1.3 billion people. If you want saying something bad about chinese government, using percentage.

    3) Dont pretend being naive innocent little boy and a political moron when bashing China.

  87. JD Says:

    If Hu Jia is a traitor and should spend the rest of his life in jail, what should be done with the Xinhua and propaganda department officials who intentionally misinform the Chinese people? Obviously, they’re the real China bashers, the real traitors.

    http://www.iht.com/articles/2008/09/29/asia/kashgar.php

  88. Jerry Says:

    @Wahaha, #86

    Why must he “…represent the opinions of Chinese or how Chinese think of Chinese government”? (yeah, I capitalized Chinese) I believe his works should stand on their own merit, good or bad. As far as I know, the Peace Prize is not a beauty or popularity contest.

    Wahaha, you diminish your credibility by engaging in schaudenfreude (look it up) in #77. Disparaging remarks don’t help your cause either.

    In #67, MLK was disparaged for his stand on the Vietnam War. I remember it clearly. He did not take aid from the Soviets, although I somehow remember that some accused him of doing so. Paul Robeson visited the Soviet Union; he was ridiculed and persecuted for it.

    In #68, you accuse Hu Jia, “Hu Jia only wants to sell his agenda or his hatred towards CCP.” To be honest, your remarks sound pretty hateful and angry to me.

    I am with Charles in #69. I am against our government funding Falun Gong.

    I accept that you are very angry. But you take so many random, disparaging shots.

    “3) Dont pretend being naive innocent little boy and a political moron when bashing China.” That surely diminishes my motivation for taking you seriously. Rather than hurling insults, throwing tantrums and screaming at people, please take a breath and let’s discuss how we feel and believe. Let’s talk about the deeper issues. I know something is troubling you. I am willing to listen. I will let you rant all you want. But I will not discuss your rants and tantrums with you. When you want to discuss the issues, please let me know.

  89. Bob Says:

    @Jerry – “In #67, MLK was disparaged for his stand on the Vietnam War. I remember it clearly. He did not take aid from the Soviets, although I somehow remember that some accused him of doing so. Paul Robeson visited the Soviet Union; he was ridiculed and persecuted for it.”

    Rather than disparaging Wahaha, maybe you should consider if an English reading comprehension course is right for yourself.

    This is what Wahaha wrote in #67: “How would Americans have thought of Martin Luther King Jr. if MLK Jr. had sought for help from Soviet unions ?”

    Ever heard of subjunctive mood?

    Yes we all know MLK did NOT take aid from the Soviet Unions, but the counterfactual hypothesis suggested — that MLK took Soviet money — is very much parallel to the Hu Jia situation.

    Now by your own admission in your next statement, “Paul Robeson visited the Soviet Union; he was ridiculed and persecuted for it,” you seem to agree that alliance with a (not-so-friendly) foreign government to go against one’s own is a cardinal sin commonly condemned by one’s countrymen/women.

    EDIT: frankly I don’t see how the fundamental opinions of Wahaha and Charles Liu differ that much as far as Hu Jia’s accepting NED money is concerned.

  90. DS Says:

    Civility is the lifeline of this blog. This entry has reached the point that intelligent inputs are poorly rewarded. Shall we leave it here and move on?

  91. sunbin Says:

    Lee Yuan tseh (taiwan born) – chemistry
    steven chu – physics 1997
    masatoshi koshiba – physics 2002

    hideki yukawa – physics 1949 — the first asian
    hideki hirasawa – chemistry 2000
    kenzaro oze – literature
    kawabata yasunari – literature
    and kenichi fukui, chemistry 1981
    ryoji noyori 2001 chemistry
    koichi tanaka japan 2002

    the japanese were very good recently on chemistry.

    and the year with arafat if middle east counts as asia. and orhan pamuk of turkey last year.

  92. S.K. Cheung Says:

    Could someone somewhere please teach Wahaha a synonym verb for “bash”. So freakin tiresome already!

    “…the Sanlu scandal…is pointless as China has 1.3 billion people” – oh really? Chinese people don’t care that their government may have been complicit in the poisoning of their children? You might want to reconsider that. Now, if you don’t like people to make a point by using a real-life example, what kind of example would your prefer? The imaginary ones?

    “If someone demonizes Roman Catholic because priests molest children, do you think he has agenda ?” – I would hope so. That aiding and abetting the abuse of children by people in positions of authority is wrong. And I’m guessing that Hu, by demonizing the CCP because the CCP robs people of their rights, is speaking out against that wrong. I must have asked this a thousand times in the past few months: so what’s your point?

  93. Charles Liu Says:

    Hey Sunbin, good to see you. BTW love the Paris Hilton picture on your blog. Is that for real, or was she posing for you?

  94. sunbin Says:

    yes, i think it is real, though she may be pretending 🙂 but i think she isn’t dumb at all.

  95. Jerry Says:

    @Bob, #89
    @Wahaha

    Amusing, highly amusing!

    Yes, Bob, I know about the subjunctive mood, hypotheses and rhetorical questions. Disparaging Wahaha? I must be missing something here. That was not my intention, at all. I am under no obligation to withhold response to any comment here, even if it is a counter-factual hypothesis (or mere speculation), a hypothetical question or a rhetorical question.

    Bob, during my upbringing as a Jew, I was taught to recognize arrogance, condescension, and disparagement, no matter how subtle. Your attempts amuse and delight me. Thanks.

    Wahaha, I know it was subtle and implied, but my examples about MLK and Paul Robeson, two great African-Americans, answers your rhetorical question/hypothesis in the positive. US public opinion can ridicule those who question the government and those in power. Martin and Paul suffered for their stands.

    Personally, I don’t care what “Americans” think about MLK or Paul Robeson. I don’t care what “Chinese” think about Hu Jia. America is not a monolith. Neither is China.

    BTW, Bob, thanks for the offer of the reading comprehension class. Geez, I just don’t have time right now. Maybe you could fill in for me? 😀

    You may ask, Bob, “Jerry, are you ever angry, arrogant, condescending, and elitist? Jerry, do you ever skewer or bash anybody (Thanks for the word, SK)?” To which I would respond, “You bet! I am fatally-flawed.” Thanks for helping me look in the mirror.

  96. rory Says:

    @ChinkTalk #8:

    At the risk of causing a stir, would you like to elaborate on any wrongdoings perpetrated on Hong Kong Chinese by the British during colonial rule, and how these wrongdoings have outweighed the benefits of British rule enough to merit reparations? I don’t mean to condone British imperialism in any way, but I don’t see how Hong Kong got a particularly raw deal out of it.

    Monty Python’s ‘What have the Romans ever done for us?’ sketch comes to mind…

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ExWfh6sGyso

  97. Wahaha Says:

    “If Hu Jia is a traitor and should spend the rest of his life in jail, what should be done with the Xinhua and propaganda department officials who intentionally misinform the Chinese people? Obviously, they’re the real China bashers, the real traitors.”

    Obviously you dont know what has happened in China after Sanlu Scandal.

    _______________________________________________________________

    SKC,

    Reread what I said pls, Sanlu scandal is kind of things that affect large percentage of Chinese.

    _________________________________________________________

    Jerry,

    Your comment — Dont pretend being naive innocent little boy and a political moron when bashing China.” That surely diminishes my motivation for taking you seriously….

    While some west media bash China for “occupation” of Tibet, they 100% support Georgia’s stands on Ossetia, that is, pretending being a naive boy; and they pretend they dont know what is real intention why their politicians and meda made human right such a big issue about China, they are pretending being political morons.

  98. Wahaha Says:

    “If someone demonizes Roman Catholic because priests molest children, do you think he has agenda ?” – I would hope so. That aiding and abetting the abuse of children by people in positions of authority is wrong. And I’m guessing that Hu, by demonizing the CCP because the CCP robs people of their rights, is speaking out against that wrong. I must have asked this a thousand times in the past few months: so what’s your point?

    You dont know my point ?

    You know my point, that is, you shouldnt demonizes Roman Catholic cuz there are several priests molested children as there are hundreds of thousands of priest. that is why I demand “using percentage.”

    BTW, what is wrong and what is right ? In WWII, british agent blowed a a ship in Norway with 4 children and dozens of innocent people on board, as the ship carried nuc material. and God knows how many innocent people ally bombs killed during WWII. Like Michael Fay incident, Most singaporeans supported the decision by singapore government. do you think singapore government did right thing ?

  99. Hemulen Says:

    Hu Jia is a traitor because he has accepted money from NED? Interesting. Sun Yat-sen accepted money from the Japanese while he was struggling against the Qing. Maybe he was a traitor too? Mao Zedong received money from the Soviet Union while he was in Yan’an. A traitor?

    Perhaps the difference between Hu Jia and these two gentlemen is the fact that they came to power and Hu Jia is just another dissident in jail who it is easy to piss on. There is a saying in Chinese that aptly describes this mentality: 胜则王败则寇.

    Every time a Chinese dissident gets hailed in the west, I am astonished to see how much crap Chinese netizens are prepared to heap on them. Interesting political culture, interesting indeed.

  100. TonyP4 Says:

    I do not agree everything with CCP. Look at the results in last 30 years. I think they’re doing quite good. They have many problems to deal with like corruption, QC, pollution. Give them time and I think they’re on the right track.

    A lot just happen logically or predictably.

    * 1989 student protest. A sad incidence that happened when the government was at the brink of being overturned. Most progresses stopped for several years after that and it is still being used an excuse by the west. No Chinese including the students want that to happen again.

    * Tibet. It is not like the Soviet breakup. I believe it will be part of China forever. The more unrest, the more suffering for Tibetans, sorry for the fact. 99.9% of the protesters from the west have not been to Tibet and their ancestors are opium dealers ( and now they experience how opium and drugs hurt their citizens and their children).

    * All the problems including tinted food, toys, pollution and corruption can be tracked down to the system is not matured to handle the fast growth of the economy. Making money fast is not the only top priority. Freedom should be allowed more and keeping pace with the economy.

  101. ChinkTalk Says:

    Rory #96 – Please don’t be afraid to question – constructive debate is good.

    Unfortunately I am very weak in Hong Kong or Chinese affairs and I am actually learning a lot from this blog. One thing I do know is that there is no universal suffrage in Hong Kong under the British. My direct experience with people from Hong Kong here in Canada is that they are all very afraid of self expression, even doctors and other educated people, on the contrary, people from China that I have met, they are very direct in their opinions and clear in their demands. This is my own personal interpretation and I could be completely wrong: if the Chinese from China who are supposily lived under authoritarian rule are much more expressive than the Hong Kong Chinese, then there must be something wrong with the way the Hong Kong Chinese have been brought up. That is why I asked for a finer examination of British rule in Hong Kong – since I do not know myself. I leave it to more knowledgeable people who can enlighten me too. So far in my life, I have not met one British person that treated me as an equal and this is in Canada, and the British are the immigrants. I could imagine how they would treat the Hong Kong Chinese under their colonial rule. Besides, are there any benevolent colonial masters. I applaud the Italians – will the British have the guts to reveal the truth.

  102. TonyP4 Says:

    Continue from my last post.

    It is the same in US. Every time we have a disaster, we have a new law to make sure it will not happen again. It tweaks the system. There are a lot to be tweaked in China.

    Hope the system is tweaked before disaster happens.

    Borrow the idea on how Brits handled corruption in Hong Kong by setting up a special agent to handle corruption that has the highest authority. It is particularly important in China with one-party government.

  103. raffiaflower Says:

    Sun accepted $$ from the Japanese, but it wasn’ t state funding (if my history is correct). He had individual Japanese sympathisers who believed in helping China’s cause.
    In fact, Japan, and the West did nothing to ease China’s painful path into the modern world, but continued in exploiting its misery.
    So,for those who are puzzled at the constant bristling of Chinese people (wherever they are) at the slightest criticism, that’s because Westerners have not earned that right to judge China right or wrong.
    In fact, that historical pattern of patronising seems repetitious, and the proposal to award Hu Jia fits right in.
    Mao accepted $$ from Soviet Union but he was a bona fide political leader and was ready to work with Chiang Kai-shek to unify China. This would have happened in the march on Shanghai if Chiang had not broken his word and
    given in to the pressure of the foreigners and Chinese capitalists.
    Both worked for something they believed in called China.
    What does this man called Hu Jia work for?
    Doing work for AIDS victims earns brownie points for good karma. But surely he taints his halo when he accepts the blandishments of an agency from a government that is essentially hostile and committed to undermining another country’s system.
    Is he a passionate crusader or a professional activist? More likely the latter, if the funding has gone to purchase a nice apartment rather than expanding humanitarian activities.
    What meaning will this so-called Peace prize have, when many people – much more probably, than those he has actually helped – reject the idea that he has contributed to the wellbeing of the society he comes from?
    The West will be giving little more than a medal to an adopted mascot.

  104. Hemulen Says:

    @raffiaflower

    The financial problem [of the revolutionaries] saw Japanese adventurers, businessmen, and politicians working smoothly together to further republicanism in China and big business in Japan.

    Sun Yat-sen was able to procure three loans from Japan [in 1911]. The first could be traced largely to the enthusiasm of his friends and to quick action on the part of Mitsui officials in Shanghai. The second reflected more careful planning in Tokyo. The third, only partly completed, represented a major attempt at [Japanese] control of the Hanyehping Company.

    Jansen, Marius B. The Japanese and Sun Yat-Sen. (Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press, 1954), p. 146.

  105. TonyP4 Says:

    Joke of the day:

    Give Nobel ‘peace’ prize to the best Chinese basher. The west decides China is the evil empire (Soviet has been dethroned, sorry), so any one against it is a saint.

  106. Hemulen Says:

    Yes, Chiang Kai-shek gave in to the pressure of capitalists and foreigners. Just like the Communists, he was trained with Soviet money, and then switched allegiance. And the Communists continued to be supported by a foreign organization, the Comintern.

  107. chorasmian Says:

    @Hemulen,

    Personally, I don’t think Hu Jia is a traitor, though it is unwise for him to accept external political funding. Regarding Sun Yet-sen and Mao Ze Dong, yes, they are traitors/criminals to the government at that time because they try to overthrow them. Your opinion actually support the court decision on Hu Jia’s case, “inciting the overthrow of state power”.

  108. Hemulen Says:

    @chorasmian

    Your opinion actually support the court decision on Hu Jia’s case, “inciting the overthrow of state power”.

    We can debate whether it is a good thing to receive money from the NED, but it is a huge imaginative leap you are making here. Just because some people who receive overseas funding are subversive, doesn’t mean that all people who receive overseas funding are subversive. The reason I gave Sun and Mao is that they are usually held up as patriotic heroes in China. Hu’s “Beijing Zhiaixing Information Counseling Center”, which received money, is an HIV awareness center.

    If you want to say that “might is right,” just say it. But calling Hu Jia a “traitor” will only make people more sympathetic to him.

  109. chorasmian Says:

    @Hemulen

    In general, I agree with you on this issue. I think Hu Jia is a patriot but chose an unwise approach. And I can understand his motivation as I mentioned on #57. I just want to say you gave a bad example to support your argument. Perhaps I should rephrase that sentence to “Your argument actually….”.

    For me, it is more interesting to find out why Chinese refuse funding from NED, but welcomed US governent funding Tsinghua university before 1949 and many other organizations currently. I can bet that the reason is universal in the world.

    Additionally, I don’t have enough information about NED to make my personal judgement. I don’t label any organization as “anti-China” easily. However, I have to say, NED has low reputation in Chinese society. If there is any misunderstanding in that, it needs a better PR consultant urgently. Otherwise, it will find every project it supports rejected by Chinese.

    Further more, I want to remind you that some Chinese do regard Mao as a devil. For me, he was a mixture of Budha and Devil. I guess many educated Chinese have similar view as mine. But don’t ask me the percentage, I can’t prove it.

  110. Karma Says:

    @Hemulen,

    The NED has been subversive with respect to China (at least communist China). It is not a HUGE IMAGINATIVE LEAP to see Hu Jia as a traitor. The leap may be wrong, but it is not HUGE.

    In the end, Hu Jia may simply have been a little opportunistic in taking $ from NED for a cause that he personally believes is good for China. Or the NED may have simply found an opportunistic pawn willing to comply with a foreign agent to weaken China.

    Both are possible, with the second much more likely in my humble opinion….

  111. Charles Liu Says:

    Hemulen, while I support Hu Jia’s AIDS activism, I think he didn’t look at the democracy money he got from NED/US State Dept carefully. I don’t think it is unreasonable for the Chinese government to say accepting US foreign policy money is in violation of China’s state subversion law – after all, US have very similiar law oursevles.

    It has been the NED’s agenda to influence/pressure the Chinese government by gathering a “string of pearls” in any and all dissident voices against the Chinese government. Here’s a comment from another blogger, Twofish in another Hu Jia conversation:

    “I once had a chat with Carl Gershman, the head of the National Endowment for Democracy. Nice guy, very well-meaning.

    Totally clueless unfortunately, and I left the chat thinking that with someone like him in charge of US democracy efforts 1) the Chinese government has nothing to worry about and 2) anyone that really wants to see democracy in China does.

    His bright idea was that you take all of the anti-Communist groups (i.e. Tibetan nationalists, Uighur nationalists, Taiwan independence, and Chinese overseas exiles) together talking with each other to try to put pressure on the Chinese government. The point I was making to him was that this was extremely “unwise” (I was polite enough to avoid using the word *freaking stupid*) since by putting all of these groups together you are going to end up with a nationalistic backlash that is going to increase support for the CCP and political repression far beyond would it otherwise would have been.

    Also, I asked him what the plan was assuming that he was successful and the Communist Party does fall, and he had no idea.

    Personal I think that Carl Gershman is extremely dangerous, not because he has this secret plot to destroy China. Quite the opposite, he is a nice, well-meaning person that has no idea what he is really
    doing.

    A four year old with a machine gun is infinite more dangerous than a hired assassin.”

    I find it exteremely distrubing that Gershman/NED basically believes the same thing as FLG, that Heaven should eliminate the CCP, but what happens when there’s statelessness and chaos, they don’t know and they don’t care.

  112. Wahaha Says:

    “I find it exteremely distrubing that Gershman/NED basically believes the same thing as FLG, that Heaven should eliminate the CCP, but what happens when there’s statelessness and chaos, they don’t know and they don’t care.”

    If they know, will they care ? more likely that is what they want.

  113. RUMman Says:

    Ha ha ha. . .

    Posters here ‘applaud’ the Italians for facing up to colonialism. The Italian reparations are all about oil. They won’t be paying any money to their non-oil producing former colonies any time soon.

    And when will the Chinese pay reparations to all the places they have colonized? Can Mongolia expect a pay out? Taiwan? Vietnam? Yunnan (it only became Chinese during the Ming)? Xinjiang? Korea was effectively Chinese controlled at certain times. . . so I guess they deserve a pay out too. Tibet of course. . Taiwan is trickier. Definitely colonized by the Dutch, then anti-Qing loyalists, then the Manchurian Qing, then the Japanese, then the KMT. Who should pay reparations and to whom?

    Chinese crack me up with their endless crapping on like little victims of colonialist imperialism, blithely ignoring the fact that they are easily Asia’s largest imperialist and colonialist power. The borders of the PRC are largely those of the Qing ‘EMPIRE’. Pretty simple stuff.

  114. Hongkonger Says:

    “I once had a chat with Carl Gershman, the head of the National Endowment for Democracy. Nice guy, very well-meaning. Totally clueless unfortunately, ”

    Funny you should say that.
    Just last night, I had the most wonderful dinner in Chungking Mansion in TST Hong Kong, of Indian curry dishes w/lots of ice cold Carlsberg>My buddy, who used to work for the airport security team in the USA (I won’t say which so-called worldclass city.) said the same about the head of this US airport Security force > “He was so full of hot air, an ace brown-nosing lazy SOB>” I was not at all surprised.
    HK, even though was an ex-British colony, has in fact become too Americanized to my likings, these days.

  115. yo Says:

    @michelle,
    Oh man, this is in regards to your comment waaay up top.
    I think going there ups your credibility. Even in a limited capacity as a “tourist”, preconceived notions and stereotypes can be smashed into pieces. Have you seen Anthony Bourdain 🙂

    In regards to your question, let’s not forget the original issue that they were protesters going waaay out of their way to spread their “gospel”. There is an expectation that this person is at least some expert if they wish to be so preachy. However, as with all pontificators, it’s a facade. Not going to Tibet for them is like some guy trying to give you medical advice, but it turns out he never went to medical school. I would agree with the person who brought this up that it is funny because it makes the protesters look like fools. It’s the expectation here that they couldn’t live up to.

    Now, does that mean you or I can’t have an informed opinion on the issue because we never went to Tibet, no!, by any stretch of the imagination. Number one, I’m not pretending to be any sort of expert on the issue or pontificating my opinions as truth. What we can do is to follow reliable information, it’s out there, albeit hard to find. However, the best thing to do, and I think you agree, is to go there and see first hand.

    On a related issue, IMO, mainlanders in China inherently have an advantage in the credibility issue because they either went to Tibet or live under the communist system so their insight on how the government operates(the good and the bad) is important. To clarify however, this does not inherently make them credible.

  116. Wahaha Says:

    RMBman,

    a colony is a territory under the immediate political control of a state, which country was under China’s political control before ?

    Mongolia colonized China, and after hundreds of years, it became part of China. China never colonized Mongolia. Great Wall was built to keep them out.

    If Chinese had been as ambitious before Qing dynasty as Westerners were, China would not have be colonized.

    so I dont know what you ha ha ha for.

  117. Wahaha Says:

    “….I think Hu Jia is a patriot…”

    He is Gordon Chang in China.

    I wish he will win the Nobel price and never go back to China.

    or become a french.

    http://time-blog.com/china_blog/2008/04/sign_of_the_times.html

  118. S.K. Cheung Says:

    To Wahaha:
    “Reread what I said pls, Sanlu scandal is kind of things that affect large percentage of Chinese.”- and your point is……

    “You dont know my point ?” – I hardly ever do. And to me that’s a good thing.

    “you shouldnt demonizes Roman Catholic cuz there are several priests molested children as there are hundreds of thousands of priest. that is why I demand “using percentage.””- once again, you have got to be pooping me! First of all, 0.0000000001% of RC priests molesting kids would be 0.0000000001% too many. Second of all, although admittedly it is a few bad apples, such bad apples have been around for decades. And if, after that amount of time, you’re still unable to rid yourself of these bad apples, then that organization deserves every single last drop of demonization that’s coming their way. Now, to bring it back to the topic of the post, if China’s had 59 years and still not gotten very far in the areas that Hu criticizes, well, demonize away I say.

    As for your “demands”, you’re welcome to two guesses as to whether they would have any bearing on me. That should improve your “percentage” chance of getting the answer.

  119. Wahaha Says:

    “First of all, 0.0000000001% of RC priests molesting kids..”

    There are 1 billion priests on earth ? if not, how 1% of ONE priest molested a child ?

    BTW, two days ago, a chinese deliverboy was killed for $20. explain how such things happen in a country while every individual’s right was respected ? explain how 7 million New Yorkers have no right to walk at night in central park ? explain why million of people have to tolerate the ugly graffiti ?

  120. S.K. Cheung Says:

    Dude, are you trying to change the subject? The sentence can be read as “X percent… would be X percent too many”, which is essentially what I wrote with some mathematical license. Does that help with your comprehension?

  121. Wahaha Says:

    SKC,

    Yeah, X% too many, but what about (1-X%) ?

    Your logic is as X% think differently, the (1-X%) should suffer.

  122. S.K. Cheung Says:

    To Wahaha:
    your logic can be likened to a small shaped piece of metal that one can manually fasten onto a screw, with or without a washer. A nation that respects individual rights may still suffer crime. The presence of crime is not a blemish on democracy. Your point, once again, is pointless.

  123. Wahaha Says:

    SKC,

    If killing one child molestor can save 1 child, I support it.

    You are living in Disneyland.

    If Chinese economy is delayed by 10 years, that mean 100 million newborn will not have chance to live better for the rest of their life.

  124. S.K. Cheung Says:

    1-X% would refer to all the other clergy within the RC church (the ones who don’t molest, presumably). Absolutely, if they’ve been standing idly by, they should be held to account. And let’s not equate the “suffering” of being demonized to the suffering of the victims. Gosh, I hope you’re not THAT out there.

    And Hu’s not demonizing CHinese people. His beef is with the system they’re subjected to. Works for me.

  125. S.K. Cheung Says:

    Wait a second, I’d settle for defrocking and jail time.

    Oh, and in case the last reference escaped you, you’re a wing-nut.

  126. Wahaha Says:

    Whether Hu is demonzing Chinese and China or not is determined by Chinese, not by politicians on the other side of earth.

  127. S.K. Cheung Says:

    …but they might have far fewer kidney stones.

    Oh, and I should rephrase my last bit (my bad): you’re living in wing-nut-land.

  128. S.K. Cheung Says:

    If your question is Hu’s intent, you’ll have to visit him in jail and ask him.

  129. Wahaha Says:

    SKC,

    If this is what West media had talked about, they would have been welcomed by Chinese.

    How about toxic rice Scandal in democratic Japan ?

    How about $700 billion for those bankers on Wall street while not even 1 billion for those Hurricane victims ?

  130. Wahaha Says:

    Let me tell you :

    Compare the benefits and interest to a pie,

    Under democracy, riches cut off 90% and people are given the right for the remaining 10%.

    In current China, those who have power cut off 10% and give people 90%.

    That is why China was able to pull 400 million people out of extreme poverty (where did the money come from ?) that is why in poor democratic country, there are always dozens of billionaires plus millions of hopeless poor people.

  131. Wahaha Says:

    “If your question is Hu’s intent, you’ll have to visit him in jail and ask him.”

    I believe he wants to see the collapse of CCP at any cost, and you do too.

  132. S.K. Cheung Says:

    Well, as of earlier today, the bail out is on hold, as far as I know. And I disagree with the bail-out. And this would make for juicy fodder on a Blog for America. But this blog ain’t that.

    I wasn’t aware of toxic rice in Japan. As I said when the Sanlu thing first broke, food safety is a global issue. A country’s model of governance does not vaccinate it against food contamination. But how a country responds in preventing “the next time” does reflect on its model of governance. So what has China done so far? Based on comments from other threads, not a lot.

  133. S.K. Cheung Says:

    “I believe he wants to see the collapse of CCP at any cost, and you do too.” – I hope it didn’t take you 4 months on this blog to realize that I think the CCP is the best thing since melamine-laced milk powder.

    As for #130, another example of your many random examples.

  134. Jerry Says:

    @S. K. Cheung, #132
    @Wahaha, #129

    Wahaha, you have brought up the Japanese tainted rice scandal. Here is a recent snippet from an article from Atimes.

    Japan
    Sep 24, 2008

    Japanese steamed over tainted-rice scam
    By Catherine Makino

    TOKYO – Consumer confidence in quality-conscious Japan has been badly shaken by a scandal over contaminated rice that was discovered to have been imported and distributed to restaurants, hospitals, schools and stores.

    Taking responsibility for the scandal, Agriculture Minister Seiichi Ota and his deputy Toshiro Shirasu resigned last week. “As the tainted rice became a big social problem, I decided to take responsibility,” Ota told reporters on September 19.

    Ota admitted that his ministry has long overlooked irregularities and, as a result, unrest over food safety has developed among consumers. ”We keenly feel the responsibility,” he said.

    Japan’s handling of rice stocks also came under criticism several months ago during what has been called a “world rice crisis” (See Japan ducks rice-crisis solution , July 18, 2008). In May, Japan released some of its imported rice stocks to halt an alarming rise in world rice prices. But despite considerable international pressure, the government took no further steps and rice prices soon regained levels unaffordable by poor countries and poor consumers.

    According to ministry officials, the discovered tainted rice, imported from China, Vietnam and the United States, was meant for industrial use such as making glue.

    Chief cabinet secretary Nobutaka Machimura said there were, so far, no reports of any adverse effects on health as the ”density of pesticides and mold is low”. “But it is a serious problem that products unfit for consumption were eaten in hospitals.” …

    http://www.atimes.com/atimes/Japan/JI24Dh01.html

    So here is my question. How does this compare with how the Chinese have handled the Sanlu scandal?

    SK and Wahaha, it seems that this unfortunate Japanese scandal has been handled more expeditiously, more openly, and more accountably than the Chinese government’s handling of the Sanlu scandal. Please feel free to comment.

    SK, you wrote

    As I said when the Sanlu thing first broke, food safety is a global issue. A country’s model of governance does not vaccinate it against food contamination. But how a country responds in preventing “the next time” does reflect on its model of governance. So what has China done so far? Based on comments from other threads, not a lot.

    I concur, SK. Wahaha, please refer to the comments out at http://blog.foolsmountain.com/2008/09/25/evolving-a-self-correcting-mechanism-for-the-chinese-society-thoughts-on-the-tainted-milk-crisis-and-other-chinese-scandals/.

  135. S.K. Cheung Says:

    To Jerry:
    didn’t know about the rice thing. Thanks for the info.

    Interesting that Japanese government calls it “tainted”, whereas Wahaha calls it “toxic”. I guess to some, it’s to-may-to, and to others, it’s to-MA-to.
    I don’t know if your link is the final word on that story, but doesn’t mention anything about people getting sick on the rice, or dying. That would also seem to distinguish it ever so slightly from the Sanlu deal. I guess to some, China doesn’t have a problem since, see, Japan has a somewhat similar (though less deadly, and more transparently addressed) problem.

  136. Jerry Says:

    @S. K. Cheung, #135

    I had not heard about the rice scandal until I heard about it from you and Wahaha. So I went to Atimes to get their take. They are a very reliable source for Asian news.

    As you say, like Ella Fitzgerald and Louie Armstrong sang, “You say to-may-to. I say to-MA-to. … To-may-to, to-MA-to, po-tay-to, po-TA-to, let’s call the whole thing off.”

    I don’t know anything outside of that article. I will probably start investigating soon. Better to do that than to just start conjecturing at this blog.

  137. Bob Says:

    On the matter of accepting foreign assistance to subvert one’s own government, the comparison between Hu Jia and Sun/Mao is spurious. The regimes during Sun and Mao (pre-PRC) eras were unstable and tumultuous. The nation’s sovereignty was often at stake. More importantly, the governments were without the support of majority.

    On the other hand, despite its problems — vast, persistent, severe, any way you want to describe, the support of the current PRC government by the mass is unmistakable, therefore Hu Jia’s solicitation and acceptance of foreign aid in his quest to address China’s problems would not be taken well by the majority of Chinese. Assuming he’s not an egomaniac, but someone with noble intentions for worthy causes, he ought to understand the approach he has undertaken simply won’t work.

    To bring back again the hypothesis of MLK with Soviet support at the height of the Cold War, would anyone insist King would have been as celebrated as he is? Please, don’t kid yourself, Jerry.

    Also, Jerry, your Jewish upbringing is quite irrelevant to the topic at hand. Just leave it out.

    I’d venture to say Nobel is probably spinning in his grave after he learned the “Peace” Prize named after him has been hijacked and become a joke.

  138. raffiaflower Says:

    Hemulen, thanks for the pointer. But I think it supports what I said: the Japanese $$ and support was from individuals who believed in the Chinese cause, not from the government.
    Mitsui was a zaibatsu (Japan Inc) and its support of Sun would also help in its commercial penetration of Western-colonized SouthEast Asia. through the overseas Chinese network. Much more $$ for Sun’s cause came from SEA, in fact, and I am sure you know that the house he occupied in Penang is still there today.
    Yes. CCP was supported in its early days by Comintern. But those were formative years, when factions were in contention over the struggle to lead (save?) China.
    Again, the $$ they accepted was to further a national cause then. Today, China’s one-party authoritarian govt is a fact. It is flawed, like all governments.
    But when someone opts to make cause with hostile forces to subvert it, the term is quisling.
    Hu Jia wants his 15 minutes of fame. He should to to America and get himself painted by Andy Warhol for immortality. Only thing, Warhol is dead.

  139. Jerry Says:

    @Bob, #137

    Interesting remarks about Sun and Mao and the comparison with Hu Jia.

    You also wrote:

    “To bring back again the hypothesis of MLK with Soviet support at the height of the Cold War, would anyone insist King would have been as celebrated as he is? Please, don’t kid yourself, Jerry.”

    It is amazing to me how people form assumptions. It also amuses me how some people phrase their hypotheses. Oy vey! I don’t know why you would assume I would kid myself, but thank you anyway. 😀 You are probably right about his celebrity. He may have received the Nobel Peace Prize, but he probably would not be as celebrated as he was then and now in the USA. He probably would be treated much the same as Paul Robeson was. Nonetheless, both of these distinguished men, IMHO, were great people, great leaders and great Americans. Greatness is not a popularity contest, at least in my book.

    Regarding your comment, “Also, Jerry, your Jewish upbringing is quite irrelevant to the topic at hand. Just leave it out.”: I will comment as I see fit. But I am glad to know your opinion.

    I disagree with your comment about Alfred Nobel rolling over in his grave. It always seems quite ironic to me that Nobel, who was the inventor of dynamite and an arms manufacturer, is the namesake of the Nobel Peace Prize. I consider it a very worthy legacy, then and now.

    One last comment. You wrote about Hu Jia, “Assuming he’s not an egomaniac, but someone with noble intentions for worthy causes, he ought to understand the approach he has undertaken simply won’t work.” That is ironic; you could have been writing about MLK in the 1950’s and 60’s. MLK continually met resistance from rabid racists, politicians and African-American leaders. African-Americans told Dr. King the very same thing you wrote, “he ought to understand the approach he has undertaken simply won’t work.” Robert Kennedy authorized the FBI wiretapping of MLK. Yet MLK and other African-American leaders ended up forming an unlikely alliance with President Lyndon Baines Johnson, from the then Southern racist state of Texas. From that alliance sprang the 1964 Civil Rights Act.

    I am glad that Dr. King persisted. I am glad that he did not give in to the naysayers.

    A bi gezunt. Mazel tov.

  140. Jerry Says:

    @raffiaflower, #103

    Raffiaflower, you wrote the following:

    So,for those who are puzzled at the constant bristling of Chinese people (wherever they are) at the slightest criticism, that’s because Westerners have not earned that right to judge China right or wrong.

    I am not puzzled at Chinese bristling. I can think of a number of reasons.

    Westerners have not earned the right? I think I know what you mean. But as a statement, it is a bit harsh.

    I will criticize/judge China, USA, Israel, whoever, wherever, whatever, as I see fit and appropriate. Please feel free to criticize, too. Maybe you could clarify or elaborate?

    You also wrote, “Is he a passionate crusader or a professional activist? More likely the latter, if the funding has gone to purchase a nice apartment rather than expanding humanitarian activities.” Is this conjecture on your part or fact?

    What meaning will this so-called Peace prize have, when many people – much more probably, than those he has actually helped – reject the idea that he has contributed to the wellbeing of the society he comes from?
    The West will be giving little more than a medal to an adopted mascot.

    I respect your opinion. Nonetheless, “… many people – much more probably, than those he has actually helped” sounds like conjecture to me. I accept that you and a number of other people don’t like him. How many, I do not know. You seem to view the West as a cohesive bloc or a monolith. Not so.

    I know virtually nothing about him. Heck, the first time I heard his name was in this blog.

    Let me be honest. I am here to learn. I tend to dismiss attempts at negative or positive marketing. The world has been overwhelmed by marketing, IMHO.

  141. ChinkTalk Says:

    Jerry – what are some of the criticisms that you have made on Israel?

  142. TonyP4 Says:

    Random thoughts.

    * Politically correct, Mao is 70% Buddha and 30% devil, but the reverse is more acceptable in history.
    Or, he is 90% Buddha in his beginning of his career but 90% Devil in his later part of his life. It is only me talking.

    To me, what he had done are just according to human nature. We all like to do good in life when we’re young. Once we’re powerful, we try to control not losing it at all cost.

    * I do not think China is a conqueror that much. Through out history, it protected its border from the ‘barbarians’ outside the great wall and the ‘barbarians’ ruled China for a long time in recent history. China liked other courtries to acknowledge it was the greatest kingdom by sending them gifts every year and very few times they colonized.

    If not so, most SE Asian countries are speaking Mandarin now. Some part of Africa too. Or, even America according to the “other” history theory.

    * From last 300 years, China has been bullied until 1949. It is not a conqueror for sure in recent history.

    * The rich folks in US always give back to the society like the two richest. The US citizens may help the poor in the world more than most other countries. The poor in US have better share of the welfare – a lot of times the welfare is too good to discourage folks to work. You can argue US is a better democratic country by that yardstick and most ‘democratic’ countries in Asia are not.

  143. Wahaha Says:

    Jerry,

    After the Sanlu scandal, lot of officials lost their jobs. and widespread check of foods is going on now in China, from candy to milk, as long as the foods are related to milk. good enough ? no, but nothing happened ? you wouldve know more if you couldve read chinese.

    Also, no offense, you think you have the right to criticize others as you see fit and appropriate. Sorry, chinese dont think so, I dont think Japanese think so either. That is Asian culture : you have to be nearly perfect to earn the right of criticizing others.

    SKC,

    http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2008/sep/19/japan.rice?gusrc=rss&feed=environment

    Toxic rice scandal, OK ?

    wow, democratic Japan tried to cover the scandal ?

  144. Jerry Says:

    ChinkTalk, #141

    CT, I have written numerous critiques since I joined. Have you seen any of them?

    CT, as a favor for you, check out at:

    http://blog.foolsmountain.com/2008/09/01/tibet-a-way-forward/
    http://blog.foolsmountain.com/2008/09/14/can-democracy-be-the-solution-to-malays-ethnic-problems/
    http://blog.foolsmountain.com/2008/08/23/lots-of-us-want-to-love-and-respect-china-but-right-now-china-isnt-helping/
    http://www.google.com/search?sourceid=navclient&ie=UTF-8&q=jerry+israel+site:blog.foolsmountain.com

  145. Wahaha Says:

    SKC

    http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2008/sep/19/japan.rice?gusrc=rss&feed=environment

    Toxic rice scandal, OK ? I didnt make up story, OK ?

  146. Bob Says:

    Jerry, you keep missing the point, which is, if MLK had been known to have ties with the old Soviets, he would not have been viewed kindly by the Americans. Whether you, a bleeding heart liberal, like it or not, reality trumps idealism.

  147. RUMman Says:

    Wahaha says: “RMBman,

    a colony is a territory under the immediate political control of a state, which country was under China’s political control before ?

    Mongolia colonized China, and after hundreds of years, it became part of China. China never colonized Mongolia. Great Wall was built to keep them out.

    If Chinese had been as ambitious before Qing dynasty as Westerners were, China would not have be colonized.”

    Didn’t they colonize Vietnam, Yunnan, Tibet, East Turkestan, Mongolia and many more . . . ?

    Like I said. . .pretty simple stuff.

    Prior to the dissolution of the Qing empire the non-Han parts of the empire were promised autonomy by Sun Yat-sen and co. Never happened though did it? ‘China’ was redefined as comprising the entire Qing Empire. This was essentially a Han land grab, and a betrayal of the Mongolians, Tibetans and Uigurs.

    Meanwhile, Yunnan only because ‘Chinese’ after the Ming moved Han settlers there to quell the minorities who had no interest in being ruled by Han. An interesting little piece of history. That imperial policy of changing the demographics of restive colonial territories through settlement of Han is now being repeated in Tibet and Xinjiang.

    I’m just pointing out some history, for the benefit of Chinese who are only capable of bitching at being on the short end of imperialism, while overlooking China’s own imperialist and colonialist history.

    Even Qing China, seen by Chinese purely as a victim of evil western colonialism, was itself an ambitious colonial power. While the Qing lost territory along the coast they also gained vast tracts of land in Xinjiang.

    I don’t expect you to accept any of these facts as truth. The truth hurts you too much.

  148. Wahaha Says:

    RUMman,

    China didnt colonize Mongolia, right ?

    Han chinese colonized minorities in YuNan ? I guess han chinese and minority lived next to each other for over one thousand years, and it surprised you that some han chinese live in Yunan by 1700s.

    When was passport invented ? maybe 500 AD in your mind,

  149. skylight Says:

    @Wahaha #143

    That’s not Asian culture, that’s backwardness. You always talk about how backward Tibet is, if there is a backward trait in today’s China, it is that critisim and dissent is not allowed. Although Japan and Korea is not totally democratic, at least critisism and dissent is allowed publically. That is modern and civilized society.

    @RUMman #147

    You speak the many truths, thank you for your history lesson!

  150. Allen Says:

    @RUMman,

    Now that I have read your abridged version of Chinese History in #147, when you do come out with your abridged version of World History – may even of the History of the Universe – can you please let me know?

    Time being of essence, I am very interested in condensing everything I need to learn into just a few seconds of reading.

    Thanks!

    P.S. When you are ready for a slightly more nuianced reading of cultural movements and assimilation in Asia (at least during the modern times), I suggest starting with a book called Cultural Genocide and Asian State Peripheries by Professor Sautman.

  151. RUMman Says:

    Touchy touchy. . .

    Allen, I wasn’t attempting ‘an abridged version of Chinese history’. I am merely pointing out aspects of Chinese history that do not gel with the idea of ‘China as the victim of foreign imperialism and colonialism’, which seems to be the only reading of Chinese history acceptable to Chinese.

    If my comments are not sufficiently nuanced, tough luck. Historical commentary from Chinese is generally far less nuanced. If I manage to be more nuanced than that I’m happy.

    Oh yes, and of course Zheng He also engaged in a little gunboat diplomacy. Did he not capture or execute a ‘pirate’ or two somewhere around Sumatra? Wasn’t the ‘pirate’ in question some local ruler who refused to pay tribute? Something along those lines anyway.

    But of course no. . that can’t have happened. Only an evil western nation would have done such a thing.

  152. RUMman Says:

    Wahaha said: “RUMman,

    China didnt colonize Mongolia, right ?

    Han chinese colonized minorities in YuNan ? I guess han chinese and minority lived next to each other for over one thousand years, and it surprised you that some han chinese live in Yunan by 1700s.

    When was passport invented ? maybe 500 AD in your mind,”

    Typical nonsensical response. . .

    – The ROC claimed sovereignty over Mongolia until several years ago. The PRC only gave their claim over Mongolia up as a blow job to the Soviets. Mongolia is fortunate to be independent rather than a Chinese colony a la Xinjiang or Tibet.

    – The Ming most certainly colonized Yunnan. This land-grab was one of the big projects of Ming times. Accomplishing this involved sending Han settlers to Yunnan to make the local people a minority in their own homeland. Apologies if it makes you uncomfortable, but try to remember that the minority peoples of Yunnan probably suffered a lot more discomfort than yourself.

    – I don’t get the passport comment. I must be thick.

    I’m endlessly amazed at the inability of many Chinese to see things from anyone’s perspective but their own. So many of them actually seem to believe China has been an endlessly benevolent power that was mercilessly exploited by evil foreigners. They are utterly unable to conceive that China has often been that exploitative foreign power.

    The very ‘national’ borders of China are those of a disappeared Manchurian empire. Elementary stuff, yet impossible for most Chinese to get. The occasional one does though.

  153. wukong Says:

    @RUMman

    Since you are lecturing Chinese on Chinese history here, here are some historical and geological facts that might interest you.

    Su Dong Po (苏东坡)is considered one of the all time greatest poets in Chinese history, his poems are still taught in high schools today. He was from Song Dynasty, that was before Mongol Yuan and later Ming Dynasty. When he lost favor with the royal court, he was exiled to Hainan Island by the emperor. Needless to say, Hainan is out in the sea south to Guandang, and far far south to Yunnan.

    Also modern Vietnam was a once a Chinese province for a thousand year, first conquered by a Qin genereal during the First Emperor’s reign, that was even before the notion of “Han” Chinese was ever coined. When Qin generals and Tang viceroy went to Vietnam, they marched through Yunnan province.

    Southern China has been home for Chinese for thousands of years, Chinese didn’t “discover” Yunnan all of sudden, hold a Thanksgiving meal with natives then kill them off. Southern China were Chinese land.

  154. skylight Says:

    @Allen

    Although Hong Kong-based Barry Sautman’s writings are interesting and controversial, some of his very politically related posturing in newspaper articles and academic articles arises some doubts regarding the academic quality of his work. He is the most quoted western academic together with Goldstein, Grunfeldt and Parenti in official Chinese government documents and statements.

    Two recommended books regarding Tibetan-Chinese interaction:

    1. Tibet and Nationalist China’s Frontier: Intrigues and Ethnopolitics, 1928-49 by Hsiao-Ting Lin (Stanford University)
    http://www.amazon.com/Tibet-Nationalist-Chinas-Frontier-Ethnopolitics/dp/0774813024/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1222900210&sr=1-1

    2. Tibetan Buddhists in the Making of Modern China by Gray Tuttle (Harvard University, now Columbia Univ.)
    http://www.amazon.com/Tibetan-Buddhists-Making-Modern-China/dp/0231134479/ref=ed_oe_p

  155. Wahaha Says:

    RUMman,

    You dont get the passport comment ?

    You need a passport to go to another country,

    BTW, Mongolia invaded China and united Mongolia and China, know what that means ?

    Put down your self-proclaimed superiority. Mind your own business, that is taking care of the native aboriginals in Canada, Australia and US, OK ? and that is also an advise to skylight.

  156. wukong Says:

    Interesting you brought up Zheng He.

    If Chinese had any colonial mentality, when Zheng He “discovered” Africa, he would’ve claim the whole continent as a Chinese colony and made himself the governor, he would have started a slave trade, killed off 90% of them and made the rest few speak Chinese. After the feat was done, heck, China might even get to lecture Europeans about the evil of colonialism.

  157. wukong Says:

    Al Gore accepted some campaign donation from Buddhist monks (Asian American I presume) when he was running for president, and it was made a big issue by the media and talk radio alike. He had to return the money.

    Similarly a couple of months ago, Hilliary had to return donations collected by some Chinese American who was found to have a warrant on him. But if he wasn’t an Asian, it wouldn’t have been made a big news as it was.

    The implied but never spoken elephant in the room is Chinese face equals foreign influence.

  158. Allen Says:

    @skylight #154, thanks for the references.

  159. Allen Says:

    @RUMman #151,

    Touchy touchy. . .

    You are right. I was touchy.

    What I really meant to say was: I am sure there are a lot of “misconceptions” in any people’s history….

    I myself am not prepared to argue that Chinese do not have misconceptions of their history – nor the proposition that China is the beneficial power while the West is the malignant power.

    But I’d agree that it is probably as wrong for a Chinese citizen to uncritically see China as a “beneficial” power as it is for a Westerner to see Western civilization as a “savior” of the world…

    As a great power (or future great power), China must refrain from wallowing in such Cum-ba-ya ideologies. Such “blindness” can only lead China to unintentionally harm the rest of the world…

  160. Jerry Says:

    @Bob, #146
    @S. K. Cheung

    Boring, Bob, very boring.

    To quote my favorite Russian (Ukrainian) Jewish American (my people) songwriters, George and Ira Gershwin.
    (a tip of the hat to SKC for reminding me of “You say to-may-to. I say to-MA-to.”)

    Let’s Call The Whole Thing Off
    By George and Ira Gershwin

    Written for the movie, “Shall We Dance” in 1937

    You like potato and I like potahto, You like tomato and I like tomahto
    Potato, potahto, Tomato, tomahto, Let’s call the whole thing off.

    You say laughter and I say larfter, You say after and I say arfter
    Laughter, larfter after arfter, Let’s call the whole thing off.

    You like vanilla and I like vanella, You saspiralla, and I saspirella
    Vanilla vanella chocolate strawberry, Let’s call the whole thing off.

    I like bananas and you like banahnahs, I say Havana and I get Havahnah
    Bananas, banahnahs Havana, Havahnah, Let’s call the whole thing off.

    You can see a clip from the movie, “Shall We Dance”, in which Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers sing the song and do an amazing dance while wearing roller-skates. I wish I could walk as well as they dance on roller-skates. Smoooooth! I think that the conversation at the start of the clip says it all for me. (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zZ3fjQa5Hls)

    I miss you George, Ira, Fred and Ginger. And you, too, Gene Kelly.

    Thanks, Bob and SKC, for inspiring my musical and terpsichorean response.

    BTW, why do you feel that I am obliged to acknowledge your point in a manner which is acceptable to you? Bob, my question is a rhetorical pejorative. You don’t have to respond. But if you want to, please be my guest.

    And, Bob, when I get comments like yours, I am known to say, “Thanks. A little recognition goes a long way.”

  161. Allen Says:

    @Bob #146,

    Jerry, you keep missing the point, which is, if MLK had been known to have ties with the old Soviets, he would not have been viewed kindly by the Americans. Whether you, a bleeding heart liberal, like it or not, reality trumps idealism.

    I agree.

    The merits of MLK aside, if international politics had been injected, I can guarantee that MLK would not have been viewed kindly by the American people.

    P.S. Of course if we are big enough, we can always rise above politics to discuss the merits of the issues despite of the specter of politics. (can sometimes be a tall order for me though!)

  162. Jerry Says:

    @Allen, #161.

    I believe that he would be viewed unkindly if he had ties to the Soviet Union. Maybe my reply to Bob (#139) was too subtle, “He probably would be treated much the same as Paul Robeson was.” I had said earlier (#95), “Wahaha, I know it was subtle and implied, but my examples about MLK and Paul Robeson, two great African-Americans, answers your rhetorical question/hypothesis in the positive.” Previously, in #88 to Wahaha, I had remarked, “Paul Robeson visited the Soviet Union; he was ridiculed and persecuted for it.”

    Dr. King was assailed and roundly criticized by a number of Americans for his opposition to the Vietnam War. That we do know.

    I personally don’t like the word “guaranteed” unless referring to death, taxes and change. And my daughter asking me for money. 😀

  163. ChinkTalk Says:

    Jerry – not unlike your rhetorical pejorative, when Chinese people say “guarantee”, it means “pretty sure”, when Chinese people say “wish you a happy birthday and that you are going to be 10,000 years old”, it means “I wish that you will live a many years”. Chinese expressions are very complex and it takes many years to understand. Playing with semantics is one thing but to truly understand the Chinese psyche vis-a-vis the true intend of that expression is quite different.

  164. S.K. Cheung Says:

    To Wahaha #145:
    I never said you made up the story. I was just commenting on word choice. And you backed it up with that article (which had some other interesting info not found in Jerry’s link, so thanks for that).

    And yes, that article suggests that Japan also has room to improve on transparency. And for that matter, I think most governments the world over could use lessons on transparency. Even China (no kidding, eh?).

    What I don’t get is, (and this is not just directed at you) why the fascination over comparing. Japan’s got funny rice, China has kidney-stone milk, Canada’s had disaster deli-meat, the US has had shitty spinach and the-trots tomatoes. But the fact that other countries have had problems doesn’t absolve each jurisdiction of their fudiciary duty to fix their own. Do Chinese feel less troubled by their kidney-stone kids because other countries have also screwed the pooch?

    I’d rather we discuss each issue on its merits, or lack thereof. Alas, people are gonna talk about what they’re gonna talk about, and one of the cool things about this blog is that Admin allows such latitude.

  165. S.K. Cheung Says:

    To Bob:
    “I’d venture to say Nobel is probably spinning in his grave after he learned the “Peace” Prize named after him has been hijacked and become a joke.”
    Alternatively, you might also consider acknowledging the possibility that more people approve of the selections than share your opinion, so that Nobel might continue to R.I.P. quite comfortably.

  166. Jerry Says:

    @ChinkTalk, #163

    Thanks for the explanation. And you are right, “guaranteed” means something very different in my head and mind. Which is why I rarely promise or guarantee anything.

    Here is a brief explanation of why I don’t get emotionally close to Chinese people here in Taipei (no guys, I don’t want to start a war over Taiwanese vs. Chinese). The gap in thinking, reasoning, handling emotions, direct vs. indirect communication, language and culture is just too big right now. Will the gap lessen? I hope so. But I don’t play “what if” or “when” games. Speculation bores me. This so-called “bleeding heart liberal” is one hard-nosed, realistic Jew who will put up emotional and psychic walls in a heartbeat. When sustaining a relationship is too much like work, I will walk away with little remorse. C’est la vie. A bi gezunt, I tell myself.

  167. Jerry Says:

    @S. K. Cheung, #164

    All of the issues named in your post are inexcusable as you say. And I was guilty of comparing of the Japanese response and Chinese response. And I would probably do it again because I want to see if there are better ways to deal with a food or drug QC issue before it becomes a scandal. And to goad governments into better dealing with issues.

    I still remember Johnson & Johnson’s Tylenol poisonings in 1982. J&J pulled all the Tylenol off all the shelves in the US. Their stellar handling set the gold standard. And the problem was someone adulterating/poisoning the Tylenol after it was on store shelves (no conclusive proof, but overwhelming evidence that it was done on store’s shelves or storerooms). But J&J did the right thing. They did not make the excuse that it was not their problem.

    All I know is that if my child was affected by one of the scandals in Japan, China, US, Europe or wherever, I would be one pissed-off parent. There is no excuse that would make me happy at that point.

  168. S.K. Cheung Says:

    To Jerry:
    I should clarify. Comparing for the sake of learning, to me, is fine. If CHina came up with a system to radically improve food safety, Canadians would be stupid not to at least examine it for applicability for ourselves. But comparing for the sake of de-emphasizing your own problems, or worse yet, to serve as an excuse for not addressing them, to me is truly pathetic.

    I vaguely recall the Tylenol thing. A shining example of a corporation doing the right thing. Perhaps it belongs in a museum.

    As I said elsewhere about Sanlu, if my child was affected, I would expect to see heads on ends of sticks, placed there with the use of dull knives.

  169. Jerry Says:

    @S. K. Cheung, #168
    @Wahaha, #143

    SK, thanks for your clarification. I agree with your statement repudiating comparison for the sake of excusing inaction or for the sake of de-emphasis of the issue. Also, if comparison yields the discovery of a better way, we would be stupid for not further investigating

    And, yes, the Guardian article had additional info to add to Atime’s article. Thanks, Wahaha and SKC. The Japanese government and Mikasa have apparently engaged, for 10 years, in malfeasance and misfeasance. Not really a surprise. More a disappointment and inexcusable.

    “wow, democratic Japan tried to cover the scandal ?” Yes, Wahaha, governments of all stripes can cover-up their malfeasance and misfeasance. Your point? Or is this just a jab? You might want to read the article and link further below in this post.

    SK, you said, “As I said elsewhere about Sanlu, if my child was affected, I would expect to see heads on ends of sticks, placed there with the use of dull knives.” LMAO. Well said.

    SK and Wahaha, here is a snippet from an article in the Greater Good magazine, published by UC Berkelely. I find this article intriguing.

    Volume IV, Issue 3: Winter 2007-08

    The Power Paradox

    True power requires modesty and empathy, not force and coercion, argues Dacher Keltner. But what people want from leaders—social intelligence—is what is damaged by the experience of power.

    The power paradox

    “Power tends to corrupt; absolute power corrupts absolutely”, said the British historian Lord Acton. Unfortunately, this is not entirely a myth, as the actions of Europe’s monarchs, Enron’s executives, and out-of-control pop stars reveal. A great deal of research—especially from social psychology—lends support to Acton’s claim, albeit with a twist: Power leads people to act in impulsive fashion, both good and bad, and to fail to understand other people’s feelings and desires.

    For instance, studies have found that people given power in experiments are more likely to rely on stereotypes when judging others, and they pay less attention to the characteristics that define those other people as individuals. Predisposed to stereotype, they also judge others’ attitudes, interests, and needs less accurately. One survey found that high-power professors made less accurate judgments about the attitudes of low-power professors than those low-power professors made about the attitudes of their more powerful colleagues. Power imbalances may even help explain the finding that older siblings don’t perform as well as their younger siblings on theory-of-mind tasks, which assess one’s ability to construe the intentions and beliefs of others.

    Power even prompts less complex legal reasoning in Supreme Court justices. A study led by Stanford psychologist Deborah Gruenfeld compared the decisions of U.S. Supreme Court justices when they wrote opinions endorsing either the position of a majority of justices on the bench—a position of power—or the position of the vanquished, less powerful minority. Sure enough, when Gruenfeld analyzed the complexity of justices’ opinions on a vast array of cases, she found that justices writing from a position of power crafted less complex arguments than those writing from a low-power position.

    A great deal of research has also found that power encourages individuals to act on their own whims, desires, and impulses. When researchers give people power in scientific experiments, those people are more likely to physically touch others in potentially inappropriate ways, to flirt in more direct fashion, to make risky choices and gambles, to make first offers in negotiations, to speak their mind, and to eat cookies like the Cookie Monster, with crumbs all over their chins and chests.

    Perhaps more unsettling is the wealth of evidence that having power makes people more likely to act like sociopaths. High-power individuals are more likely to interrupt others, to speak out of turn, and to fail to look at others who are speaking. They are also more likely to tease friends and colleagues in hostile, humiliating fashion. Surveys of organizations find that most rude behaviors—shouting, profanities, bald critiques—emanate from the offices and cubicles of individuals in positions of power. My own research has found that people with power tend to behave like patients who have damaged their brain’s orbitofrontal lobes (the region of the frontal lobes right behind the eye sockets), a condition that seems to cause overly impulsive and insensitive behavior. Thus the experience of power might be thought of as having someone open up your skull and take out that part of your brain so critical to empathy and socially-appropriate behavior.

    Power may induce more harmful forms of aggression as well. In the famed Stanford Prison Experiment, psychologist Philip Zimbardo randomly assigned Stanford undergraduates to act as prison guards or prisoners—an extreme kind of power relation. The prison guards quickly descended into the purest forms of power abuse, psychologically torturing their peers, the prisoners. Similarly, anthropologists have found that cultures where rape is prevalent and accepted tend to be cultures with deeply entrenched beliefs in the supremacy of men over women.

    This leaves us with a power paradox. Power is given to those individuals, groups, or nations who advance the interests of the greater good in socially-intelligent fashion. Yet unfortunately, having power renders many individuals as impulsive and poorly attuned to others as your garden variety frontal lobe patient, making them prone to act abusively and lose the esteem of their peers. What people want from leaders—social intelligence—is what is damaged by the experience of power.

    When we recognize this paradox and all the destructive behaviors that flow from it, we can appreciate the importance of promoting a more socially-intelligent model of power. Social behaviors are dictated by social expectations. As we debunk longstanding myths and misconceptions about power, we can better identify the qualities powerful people should have, and better understand how they should wield their power. As a result, we’ll have much less tolerance for people who lead by deception, coercion, or undue force. No longer will we expect these kinds of antisocial behaviors from our leaders and silently accept them when they come to pass.

    We’ll also start to demand something more from our colleagues, our neighbors, and ourselves. When we appreciate the distinctions between responsible and irresponsible uses of power—and the importance of practicing the responsible, socially-intelligent form of it—we take a vital step toward promoting healthy marriages, peaceful playgrounds, and societies built on cooperation and trust.

    ——————————————————————————–

    Dacher Keltner, Ph.D., is a co-editor of Greater Good and a professor of psychology at the University of California, Berkeley

    Hmmm …

  170. RUMman Says:

    Wukong said: “Since you are lecturing Chinese on Chinese history here, here are some historical and geological facts that might interest you.

    Su Dong Po (苏东坡)is considered one of the all time greatest poets in Chinese history, his poems are still taught in high schools today. He was from Song Dynasty, that was before Mongol Yuan and later Ming Dynasty. When he lost favor with the royal court, he was exiled to Hainan Island by the emperor. Needless to say, Hainan is out in the sea south to Guandang, and far far south to Yunnan.

    Also modern Vietnam was a once a Chinese province for a thousand year, first conquered by a Qin genereal during the First Emperor’s reign, that was even before the notion of “Han” Chinese was ever coined. When Qin generals and Tang viceroy went to Vietnam, they marched through Yunnan province.

    Southern China has been home for Chinese for thousands of years, Chinese didn’t “discover” Yunnan all of sudden, hold a Thanksgiving meal with natives then kill them off. Southern China were Chinese land.”

    I resent the suggestion that as a non-Chinese I somehow have a less adequate understanding of Chinese history than a Chinese. Plenty of good work on Chinese history is done by non-Chinese (excepting idiots like Menzies who make most serious ethnic Chinese historians cringe), and plenty of awful work is done by Chinese.

    To suggest that the Ming colonization of Yunnan did not happen is ridiculous. Is that what you are suggesting?

    What do you mean by the Vietnam comment? Are you suggesting China owes the Vietnamese a hefty reparations bill?

    What of the comments about how officials were dispatched to Hainan. You realize I could make similar comments about how the Prime Minister of Great Britain used to dispatch his officials to Hong Kong – which is in what is now China you know. Does this mean Hong Kong has ‘always been an inalienable part of British territory’? I think not.

    China, while different things at different times through history, was until a little under a century ago ALWAYS an EMPIRE. There was previously no Chinese ‘country’ with sovereignty over the current borders of the PRC, and the current borders of the PRC are, more or less, those of the last Chinese empire (which was actually manchurian but never mind that).

    Your ramblings about how Hainan was controlled by a Chinese empire in the Song and therefore Yunnan must have been ‘Chinese’ before the Ming are about as silly as a European (whether from Spain, Portugal, Holland, Britian or somewhere else, arguing about what bits of the globe belong to ‘their country’).

    Most of what is now ‘China’ became part of ‘China’ through a process of imperial expansion and colonization.

    I’m not going to argue the rights and wrongs of China’s subjugation of its neighbors, but the Chinese habit of seeing themselves solely as the victims of colonialism and imperialism has to stop.

  171. Wahaha Says:

    RMMman,

    Let us talk about if Americans, Australians and Canadians should go back to Europe.

    Give me a reason why they shouldnt.

    or

    Stop talking about Tibet or YuNan,

    then, we are in peace.

  172. Wahaha Says:

    Jerry,

    It was a jab.

    Power is a paradox for 99.999% of the people. On one side, people want as much power in their hands as possible; on the other side, they want government has the power to solve their problems.

    People cant have both.

    What is tricky and deceptive in a democratic system is that people are given all the power to determine how to distribute 10% of the pie AFTER the riches have taken 90% of the pie.

    In a country with lot of poor people, 10% of the pie is not enough to make everyone happy BUT EVERYONE GETS HIS FAIR SHARE OF 10% OF THE PIE, so most of them feel “happy” but are hopelessly stuck in their current positions in society, as in India.

    In China, those who have powers cut 10% of the pie off first (corruption), people are given 90% of the pie (that is why China was able to put 400 million people out of poverty, it needs lot of money), the problem is people dont have a say on how to distribute the 90% of the pie.

    SKC, dont try to argue with me, name a country with lot of poor people in which what I said is not true.

  173. RUMman Says:

    Wahaha, your response is very ‘Chinese’ (specifically very PRC).

    I don’t believe I suggested that China should ‘get out of Yunnan’, ‘get out of Tibet’ or anything similar. I merely pointed out that ‘China’ has historically been an empire rather than a ‘nation’, the current Chinese nation has the borders of a disappeared empire, and as an empire ‘China’ has engaged in plenty of imperialism and colonialism of its own. Is understanding this information not fundamental to understanding China?

    Your response is “Americans, Australians and Canadians should go back to Europe”.

    Wonderful.

    You merely demonstrate my point that Chinese are, on the whole, woefully incapable of self-reflection about their own history. Merely pointing out the elementary truth that China has its own history of aggressive imperialism and colonialism draws a highly defensive and hostile response.

  174. Wahaha Says:

    RUMman,

    You are talking about chinese history.

    If Chinese had constantly talked to you about your country’s history of colonizing other continents, how would you have felt ? do you feel you have to defend your country ? would you be nice to him ?

    We dont see us as the sole victim of colonization as you claimed. To us, it is more like you are allowed to burn my house but I am not allowed to light a cigarette in front of you.

    We are all human. Before criticizing others, you should think if you would accept the similar criticism. If not, then that is “bashing”. (and you obviously dont want to talk about your country, which is easy for everyone.. to criticize others.)

  175. TonyP4 Says:

    From Wikipedia,

    Around the third century BC, the central area of Yunnan around present day Kunming was known as Dian. The Chu general Zhuang Qiao (庄跤) entered the region from the upper Yangtze River and set himself up as “King of Dian”. He and his followers brought into Yunnan an influx of Chinese influence, the start of a long history of migration and cultural expansion.

    ———–

    As a tourist, I found the folks are beautiful and happy. Cultures have been maintained. Lot of Chinese herb for sale. Beautiful scenery. A must to visit after seeing the Chinese essence: Beijing, Shanghai, Xian and Quilin.

  176. RUMman Says:

    Wahaha, if you talked about my country’s history of colonization other continents, I would not care. I would not try to defend ‘my own country’. I hold more than one passport, I didn’t grow up saluting any national flag at school, and I see nationalism as a disease that mainly afflicts fools. So if somebody talked about “my country’s” history of colonizing other continents, yes, I would be nice to him. Provided his comments were reasonable (i.e. historically accurate, reasonably unbiased), what is the problem?

    When we study history in my country we learn the smell of our own shit. Chinese apparently don’t.

    And no, I’m not ‘bashing’ China. I’m simply pointing out an aspect of China that Chinese, by and large, prefer to ignore.

  177. wukong Says:

    @RUMman

    To accuse China of colonizing Yunnan province is like accusing Eskimos colonized Alaska during stone ages.

    That’s what I am suggesting.

  178. Wahaha Says:

    RUMman,

    Tell me some shit you smelled.

    “Dance with wolves” ?

    “Provided his comments were reasonable..” ? more like ” Provided I think his comments were reasonable..”

    You think your comment about how “China colonized Yunan.” is reasonable ? not in our minds.

  179. TonyP4 Says:

    According to my “other history theory”, Eskimos and Indians are Chinese (could be exile from China ) , so by simple logic America is first populated by Chinese and colonized by Brits. If you do not believe me, test their DNA. Haha!

  180. RUMman Says:

    Wukong, I’m not ‘accusing’ China of anything. Read up on your Ming history.

    Your analogy is also a very poor one. I know nothing much about Alaska but I assume it was ’empty ‘before the Eskimos arrived (OK, probably it was quite like that since humans supposedly settled America through Alaska, so I guess someone was there, but whatever. . .). In any case it’s something we probably know little about since the only records would be archeological.

    In contrast, the Ming colonization of Yunnan was a well documented exercise in subordinating and controlling an established non-‘Chinese’ local population. The Ming Dynasty saw a deliberate policy of incorporating Yunnan into ‘China’ by swamping the region with Han settlers. This was done to control the restive local population. Looking back, it seems to have worked quite well.

    Unless somebody says something intelligent I’m probably finished here. I’m merely pointing out a few facts. There is not a whole lot to debate. Ask all white Canadians to go back to Europe, accuse me of lying, find some earlier example that ‘proves’ Yunnan was ‘part of China since ancient times’, up to you. . . I’m not interested in responding to silly stuff.

    Alternatively just digest the truth. It’s good for the system.

  181. RUMman Says:

    Wahaha, my comment on the colonization of Yunnan is reasonable to serious scholars of Ming history.

    I realize you are a bunch of non-historians. Still, it isn’t hard to learn about this stuff.

  182. Wahaha Says:

    RUMman,

    Dont try to foolishly make a case that “Chinese try to ignore the….”, that is what Westerners have done on their own history of colonization. It is shamelss to accuse others while he himself has done 10 times worse.

    West has been on the driver seat for 4 or 5 hundreds of years, now we dont want to follow the direction you want, then we have to put up with the BS ? if we dont, we become fanatic nationalists ?

    BTW, I dont see many chinese here talking about what happened 19 centuries. It is more like that you cant face the ugly things your ancestors did 150 years ago, and even a little talk about that is too much for you to take. We cant face the truth ? how insightful !!!

  183. ChinkTalk Says:

    RUMman, as one Canadian to another, please don’t pull a Spielberg on this blog, don’t pickup your marbles and go home because you don’t have it your way and call it a protest against Darfur. Personally I enjoy your comments and marvel at your knowledge of Chinese history, you sure know more than I do. I think that Wahaha and Wukong and the rest are not being unreasonable with you, they are merely presenting their points of views as you were. This is how democracy works isn’t it. I agree with you that the Chinese always claimed to be victimized; I can tell you that after learning about the head taxes and the rape of Nanking, I do feel being prodded because of my race; I can tell you from personal experience that I have had human feces thrown at my door and that I was denied service while the next person who is white was given the spot. But Chinese people should not feel victimized, they should be united to work for the benefit of the world, so that the world could see that Chinese people are not the demons as being portrayed by the Western media.

  184. RUMman Says:

    Wahaha, you are talking a load of crap there.

    In a nation like New Zealand education on local history is essentially the story of colonization, often taught with parallels to instances elsewhere in the world (e.g. reactions of NZ Maori to colonization versus those of the Aztecs and Maya). Incidentally it would be interesting to do a similar comparative study on Taiwanese aboriginals, looking first at their interactions with Dutch colonizers, and then at their later interactions with Chinese colonizers, and comparing this with say New Zealand, or Australia, or America. But I’m digressing. .

    Nothing shameless about me Wahaha.

    Your accusations towards me are groundless.

    And your talk about my ancestors is laughable. 150 years ago my ancestors were busy being colonized by the British.

    Things aren’t black and white amigo.

  185. RUMman Says:

    ChinaTalk, I’m not Canadian. . sorry.

    I’m born in New Zealand but lived partly in the EU and carry an EU passport as well.

  186. RUMman Says:

    Oh, and ChinaTalk, I’ve been denied service in China occasionally as well. I wouldn’t call it typical. Very rare.

    On one occasion I was spat at and denied service in a restaurant – this was in Chaozhou. A younger relative came out and apologized for his grandmother’s behavior, but I still wasn’t served (not that I really wanted to be – the next lot of spit would probably have been in the food!).

    But I consider those experiences atypical and don’t dwell on them too much. They seem to be very much individual things – like the black guy in Haiti who expelled snot all over my bag while the other people in the street watched and laughed.

    This stuff just happens.

    I only get concerned when it becomes a group behavior.

  187. Wahaha Says:

    RUMman,

    Tell me how many Maori were killed and how they were brutalized.

    Tell me something about the independece movement in Te keha, New Zealand.

    You think your ancestors did wrong, right ? now it is good time to correct the mistake and give part of New Zealand back to Maori. (it is reasonable, isnt it ?)

  188. RUMman Says:

    What information do you want Wahaha? Am I supposed to write a Cultural Revolution style self criticism?

    There is an independence movement in New Zealand. It has always been fairly small, and I would say it is rather less vocal now than it was a couple of decades ago. Only a small minority of Maori have anything to do with it.
    Partly as a result of that independence movement, New Zealand also has a body devoted to resolving historical grievances, the Waitangi Tribunal. While it hasn’t been perfect, I’d say that in world terms the work of the Waitangi Tribunal has launched an extremely successful attempt at resolving the historical injustices of colonization. It has certainly been held up as a model elsewhere. Parts of New Zealand have been ‘handed back to Maori’ through the Waitangi Tribunal. Essentially, exactly what you are so shrilly demanding has been going on for decades already.

    It is also worth nothing that colonization in New Zealand was a very different process to that in most other places. The ‘brutalization’ (using your choice of words) of the Maori was minimal. New Zealand was of marginal importance to the British and to avoid wasting military resources on the colony they generally sought peaceful coexistence with the Maori. Since initial European settlement far more Maori died in tribal warfare with other Maori than died at the hands of Europeans. Though having said that, European introduced diseases that decimated the Maori – but while sad, this seems more unfortunate than deliberate.

  189. skylight Says:

    @RUMman

    Many countries and peoples have been colonized in the past, India for instance was colonized for several hundreds of years by the British, but I rarely see the same type of anger as displayed by Indians towards the “west”. Why?

  190. skylight Says:

    Has Indians moved on….while many Chinese are still stuck in the victim mode? Would be interesting to hear Indian perspectives on these differences.

  191. TonyP4 Says:

    How Chinese were treated in the last 300 years by the west make any Chinese angry. Any country in history forced another country to buy opium – a drug pusher by a country? Burned the palace. Stole Chinese treasures (hope some one will trace how many in the museums in the west can be traced back to the loots in this period… The list is endless. The day when China launched its first missile is the day we can say “no more bully from the west.”

    Are you angry if your country was treated like this?

  192. Wahaha Says:

    skylight,

    Are you pretending being politically naive ?

    Indians didnt move on, they are stuck in the lowest layer of the society, just there were no meda to report their complains, no organization like NED to support them, no1 one stirred the pot, no1 repeatly remind them the terrible experience their ancestors suffered, so they “move on”.

    RUMman,

    LOL, your textbooks are no better than the textbook used in Tibet, what you have heard from your media about Maori is no better than CCTV on Tibet, maybe even worse. Check this :

    http://www.geocities.com/barddiva/Maoris.htm

    BTW, it took me only 2 minute to find that, just google “Maori, poverty, new Zealand”.

    I knew nothing about Maori expect couple of pictures and I know Maori people are in poverty, go figure.

  193. Wahaha Says:

    Skylight,

    Are you pretending being naive ?

    Native aboriginals are living in the lowest layer of society. they are happy ? You didnt hear complains cuz there was no media to report their complains, there was no NED to fund their movement, there was no1 to stir the pot, there was no1 to remind them again and again what happened to their ancestors.

  194. Wahaha Says:

    RUMman,

    LOL, your textbooks are no better than that in Tibet, your media is no better than CCTV. Read this :

    http://www.geocities.com/barddiva/Maoris.htm

    It took me only two minutes to find the link, cuz even though I knew nothing about Maori, I knew they are among the poorest people in New Zealand, so I googled “poverty, maori, new zealand:.

  195. Wahaha Says:

    RUMman,

    Read this

    http://www.geocities.com/barddiva/Maoris.htm

    Now you know your textbooks are no better than those in Tibet, your media is no better than CCTV, maybe even worse.

    I knew nothing about Maori, but i knew they lived in poverty, and I googled “poverty, Maori, new zealand”, it took me only two minutes to find the link, go figure.

    I guess they just “move on” , as skylight said.

  196. wukong Says:

    The fact the China was a victim of colonial western imperialism powers, and pointing out that fact, don’t automatically make Chinese having a victim mentality or feel victimized. At least I think I don’t.

    What irks me most is the so-called mainstream westerners riding on moral high horse, constantly harp on China’s negativities and lecture Chinese on “values”. I am sick of the duplicity and pretension.

    As I see it, China is minding her own business, China is asking the right to be left alone, and that wish should be respected.

    If you enjoy the smell of your own shit, fine; but please don’t come over to my house and rip open the sewage pipe because you think it’s some universal value that everybody should enjoy the smell of their own shit.

  197. RUMman Says:

    Wahaha, it is easy to play ‘google’ and come up with a link saying anything you like.

    I can assure you that article is filled with inaccuracies and half-truths, and its level of analysis is anything but nuanced. It is a polemical piece rather than a serious attempt at analysis.

    Also what textbooks ‘in Tibet’ are you referring to?

    What does the comment that the New Zealand media “is not better than CCTV, maybe even worse” actually mean? You mean it is equally censored? Excuse me while I laugh. . .

    Wahaha, you know zilch about New Zealand, and googling “poverty, Maori, New Zealand” clearly isn’t teaching you much.

    For as long as you approach this discussion as an east-west pissing contest we are unlikely to get anywhere.

  198. RUMman Says:

    Wukong, hypocrisy is something I personally object to wherever I see it.

    While my personal opinions are irrelevant, I see no reason to respect “China’s desire to be left alone” (but is China really some borg like mass with this desire?). My opinions and beliefs are as valid as anyone else’s.

    I object to the way Chinese continually harp on about being victims of imperialism and colonialism, while blithely ignoring the way ‘China’ (such as it existed then) has historically oppressed others.

    I regularly hear PRC citizens make the most ridiculous statements. The idea that China has never initiated an aggressive war is a very popular one. It is popular to the point where even westerners parrot it.

    Menzies’ history (or one of the related articles – it may have been by that other guy writing similar stuff about earlier voyages – a guy whose name I now forget) contained laughable examples of these daft assumptions about Chinese history pushed to its extreme. From memory there was a passage commenting on a Norse account of a fight between Vikings and a group Menzies decided were ‘Chinese’. Menzies (or that other guy) then commented something like “Why had the Chinese attacked the vikings? This was very uncharacteristic. I can only surmise that they had been attacked first.” What a ridiculous pile of drivel to flow from a pen of a ‘historian’, but it shows how deep the daft assumptions about China run.

  199. Wahaha Says:

    RUMman,

    you didnt read the link, did you ?

    You cant assume me anything, the things described in the link happen in Australia, Canada and US. I am 100% sure that article tells the truth.

    It is not pissing contest, it is simply the truth to wake people like you and skylight up and that should explain why Chinese are very angry at West media.

    If you believe your media has told the truth about sensitive issues, then you are politically as smart as a 5th grade.

    Your logic is ridiculous :

    You claimed that Chinese should complain about the colonization by west. byt the same logic, shouldnt west take care of native aboriginals before criticizing China ?

  200. Allen Says:

    This thread is going crazy. We throw around emotionally-charged rhetoric such as colonization without really agreeing on what it is. I don’t know everything about colonialism, but I do know that the movement of people and the assimilation of people per se is not colonization – otherwise, take any “country” (maybe even city) in the world, and going far back enough in history, I’ll be able to divide it into fragments of purported “colonies.”

    @RUMman, when Chinese speak of “colonization,” we mean very specifically the interaction between the rest of the World and the West since the 17 century. That interaction has left a delicate and emotional scar in the psyche of many in the rest of the world.

    Why has it left such a scar in people’s conscience? I don’t know. Part of it probably has to do with Western technological superiority. For the first time, a small group of people is able to wipe entire peoples on entire continents and shame China – the previous superpower of world for centuries – the land that was the original driving force for Western explorations.

    More will be written about colonialism – especially once China becomes strong again – and the history of the world become more balanced and less Western centric. So I won’t belabor here.

    Now as to your broadened definition of “colonization” that incorporates all movements of people and culture – that is something fundamentally different. It is a fact of life – of nature – perhaps of progress. If we are going to call that “colonialism,” then I think we are trivializing what the West has brought to the world in the last few centuries.

    So is China a colonial power? I don’t think so. Even when China was exploring the world (Zheng He), the emperor always sent his best ambassadors along and constrained their behaviors with careful edicts. This of course contrast greatly with the Western model where adventurism and a thirst for fortunes ruled the day: where often it is the least educated that are sent out, and where the goal is to plunder the world in the name of their Royal Highness and their God.

    Whatever you think of my characterization, I don’t think you can argue that Chinese influence and expansion has ever left a scar on the rest of the world that rival what Western expansionism has left us over the past few centuries.

  201. RUMman Says:

    Wahaha, I read the link.

    I’ve lived in New Zealand half my life, been through the New Zealand educational system, completed a master’s degree in history (including writing a dissertation on dealing with colonization and indigenous issues in Mexico), and I am happy to call the article you linked to a piece of polemic.

    And shall we stop discussing whose media is less biased? That wasn’t the original topic and I have little interest in going there. The fact that most Chinese who feel the western media is ‘biased’ are basing their opinions on a few miscaptioned photos (a common enough occurrence in newsrooms) makes the whole thing a bit of a joke in my book. Chinese students in New Zealand protested the ‘biased’ New Zealand media, yet failed to identify any instances of bias other than those on that anti-CNN site – and none of those examples involved the New Zealand media. In other words these nationalistic protesters are mostly a bunch of ridiculous ‘sheeple’.

    You finished by saying: “Your logic is ridiculous:
    You claimed that Chinese should complain about the colonization by west. byt the same logic, shouldnt west take care of native aboriginals before criticizing China ?”

    Sorry, but I have no idea what you mean by this last comment. It makes no sense to me.

    Of course New Zealand IS taking care of its aboriginals. It does pretty well in this area.

    New Zealand is genuinely bicultural – if anything excessively so (the emphasis on Maori culture leads to Pacific Island and Asian contributions to the country getting overlooked). I can tell you right now that if the Olympics had been held in New Zealand the Maori element of the ceremony would have consisted of a lot more than a bunch of white kids dressed up as Maori, or perhaps some ‘Maori’ songs being sung in by Europeans in English..

    Didn’t the New Zealand team enter the stadium led by an athlete in a Maori ceremonial cloak (and the cloak would almost certainly have been the real deal – i.e. a genuine tribal heirloom rather than something thrown together for the occasion)?

    Respect for Maori and their culture in New Zealand is very real. Suggestions to the contrary are just daft.

  202. S.K. Cheung Says:

    To Wahaha:
    there is no answer to your 10%/90% example, because, as with many of your examples, it is arbitrary. On what basis do you say that western elites take 90%, and Chinese elites 10%? It is true that there is a concentration of wealth…but that is not an effect of democracy. That is an effect of a free market. And as far as I can tell, you would be one of the few here to deny that China has her own hands full with the rich/poor disparity. My beef is not with China’s financial system, but her political one. So my question is, if China’s rich/poor disparity is no better than that of a western nation, what other benefit is her political system providing exactly?
    I readily acknowledge that I am very fortunate to live in a wealthy country. And China’s not there yet (at least the masses); though I did read somewhere once that Audi sells more cars in China than in North America. So some people in China has some dough. I can’t wait until China’s corrupt system allows the top heavy wealth to filter down to the little guy; by then, it will be hard even for someone like you to not extricate your head from the sand and acknowledge the need to reform the political system.

    “it is good time to correct the mistake and give part of New Zealand back to Maori. (it is reasonable, isnt it ?)” – sure. But:
    1. did the Maori ask for it back? Or are they satisfied with the status quo?
    2. if NZ does that, then Tibetans get Tibet back?

  203. RUMman Says:

    Allen. . . oh for goodness sake.

    So you define ‘colonialism’ as specifically involving ‘the west’? Well that kind of limits the scope for discussion doesn’t it? By that definition then obviously the west and only the west is to blame! Nice and simple isn’t it? We didn’t even have to engage our brains even a little bit to get to our conclusion.

    ‘Colonialism’ and ‘Imperialism’ (I originally used both terms) existed before ‘the west’. And yes, they can take different forms. And yes, China has most certainly been a colonial and imperial power. Obviously not in the exact same mold as the west, but a colonial and imperial power nonetheless.

    In the days of the British Empire I’m sure many Brits saw colonization as “movements of people and culture – that is something fundamentally different. It is a fact of life – of nature – perhaps of progress”.

    Ask a Uigur and I’m sure you’ll find that Chinese imperialism and colonialism has left a scar or two.

  204. S.K. Cheung Says:

    All this dredging of history is fascinating (actually, not really). I’m just not sure how comparing yesterday’s sins furthers today’s discussion, or enlightens anyone on tomorrow’s solutions. And if Chinese people want to compare western historical sins so as to de-emphasize their current problems, that is truly pathetic.

  205. Allen Says:

    @SKC #204,

    No no no … Chinese people do not want to hide behind Western sins from their current problems. Colonialism has been brought up in this thread to describe China as it is today. I felt that the identity of being Chinese is attacked here.

    I just want to point out what to me is obvious: that Chineseness naturally inevitably came about through movement of people and spread of culture in East and South Asia, but that movement is not the same quality or caliber that resulting from the movement of people and spread of ideas fostered by Western colonialism of the last few centuries.

    As for China’s problems today … sure we can discuss those without dredging up history – unless people want to bring up how imperialistic China is, comparing China of today to the West of the past, again…

  206. Allen Says:

    @RUMman #203,

    Fair enough. Chalk this up to our differences in perspectives. As I mentioned, many of these perspectives will change in the next generation, with a different context of geopolitics.

    For now, I am sure our difference in historical perspectives will NOT affect our effort to discuss issues relating to the present! 😉

  207. skylight Says:

    @Allen #200

    On colonial literature…
    I don’t think we have to wait a long time for good colonial literature, there are many books written by Western, African, Asian and Latin American authors on colonialism. Colonialism is not a western phenomenon, it exists in all societies. After decolonization in the 1960’s, the notion that colonialism was good has been discredited worldwide. Two favorite books among intellectual Tibetans inside Tibet are the following two books written in the 1950-60’s:

    1. Franz Fanon, “Wretched of the Earth”
    2. Albert Memmi, “The Colonizer and the Colonized”

    It is not a coincidence that these books are popular among Tibetans.

    On scars…
    Since you asked for examples of scars, I can assure you that the brutal behavior of Peoples Liberation Army in Kham and Amdo in the 1950’s, exterminating whole villages, raping and plundering, leaving only some old people and children, left many unhealed scars to this day. Even today there has been no investigation or authoritative account of how many Tibetans were killed altogether or sent to labor death camps (before the cultural revolution). I think this can be compared to most modern examples of “western” brutality.

  208. S.K. Cheung Says:

    To Allen:
    “No no no … Chinese people do not want to hide behind Western sins from their current problems.” – I hope you’re right. I know you don’t; but, to borrow from one of my all-time favourite flicks, “some people have their enthusiasms”.

    I agree that the uniqueness of “Chineseness” should be obvious. Everything that we are today is a function of everything that’s gone on before…and that applies to individuals as well as cultures. And our past may inform us on how we might proceed into the future. But to belabour the past to me is a waste of time. There should be enough to do worrying about what we can change to be wasting neurons reliving what we can’t.

  209. ChinkTalk Says:

    RUMman – glad to hear your are of New Zealand origin, the few NZlanders that I have met including a few Maoris, they are very nice people and they never look at me as something below them like the British do. The shit on my door was a once in a lifetime thing but the denial of service happens quite often. Usually they just ignore you or walk away. Mind you this is not done only to the Chinese people but visible minorities, and last year, they did a survey and found that is the consensus of visible minorities.

    Skylight – my roommate of two years was from India and I can tell you that at least from that group of people I was with, there is no love for the British. India is being courted by the West to counter China, special opportunities are afforded to Indians, like shared space program, shared nuclear technologies, etc, while I believe the Indians themselves are very capable of doing things themselves but the added advantage certainly helps. I have respect for you because you believe in facts like the five Nobel judges that you have pointed out to me, do you think that the Indians have moved on factually.

  210. Bob Says:

    @skylight — “Even today there has been no investigation or authoritative account of how many Tibetans were killed altogether”

    Oh really? Didn’t your source Tibet.org officially announce the 1.2+ million figure already? I seriously don’t know what you are looking for here.

  211. CM Lee Says:

    Allow me to input my 2-cent. When people talked about the past, I don’t believe that they necessary want to relive it, but rather history is often used as a mirror to reflect what is the present and future as SKC so succinctly stated. Also, history is a mirror that reflects the author’s own mentality, bias and preconceived notion about specific events, past, current and future. Much like looking at Escher’s drawings: are the steps of the stair going up or down? Are there birds flying to the left or to the right? History is very subjective. No one can say his/her recounting of events past is 100% neutral/ accurate, heck, even the present can be hard enough to record with neutrality not to mention being accurate what with all the modern tools for instantaneous reporting. To wit: Can any one say for sure who fired the first shot over the Russia/ Georgia conflict? Can any one say for sure what exactly is the cause for the war in Iraq? Can any one conclude with authority who actually won the US election in 2000? and on…So posts that laced heavily with histories are wonderful readings for me. Not only the threads broaden the subjects discussed but also the opportunity to understand the authors. Without bringing history into discussion, what are we to talk about? Where is square one? When is the appropriate time frame of reference?

  212. ChinkTalk Says:

    I love this Tibetan
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=13tdyjlCnS8&feature=related

    And these Tibetan chicks are totally hot

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kVaPR0mFFio&feature=related

  213. Li Qiang Says:

    Nobel Peace Prize? A PR agent for human rights fundamentalists. Those naive nodic fools have no idea of international politics. I’m sure CCP is praying they pick up Hu Jia – as if a Dala Lama is not enough for CCP to get the hearts of Chinese people – Hu Jia would be a further boost. Or is it a Nobel Destruction Prize?

    There is really a problem with the judgement of those nordic nutshells. A prize for Gao Xingjian has made it a laughing stock.

  214. S.K. Cheung Says:

    To Li Qiang:
    dude, it a “peace” prize. Folks like you are the fools who keep injecting “international politics” into it.

  215. Allen Says:

    @SKC #214,

    The peace prize is about international politics.

  216. Li Qiang Says:

    oh SKC you sound like an innocent goose! Injecting international poltics to Nobel Peace Prize? No need as they are the most politicised insititution – attention seekers on behalf of peace and human rights let me put it simply! Can’t see how peaceful it is to award the Prize to a professional activist. They just want to ignite CCP, don’t they? As if there is no meaningful things to do…

  217. TonyP4 Says:

    ChinkTalk, I’ve to agree that the Tibetan girls are hot – almost melted my screen not to mention my heart. They are natural beauties compared to the made-made ‘beauties’ in Hollywood.

    Contrary to the west media, they’re free to sing, keep their culture, are happy, and the landscape is beautiful.

  218. S.K. Cheung Says:

    To Allen:
    chalk it up to our list of things….
    But just as an example, Mother Theresa.

  219. S.K. Cheung Says:

    To Li Qiang:
    unlike some Chinese, I see no problem recognizing an activist who works for peace and human rights. Such an activist can be professional, amateur, telepathic, shape-shifitng, horse whisperer…don’t matter none to me. Oh, and btw, might serve to recognize that not everything is about the CCP, as repugnant as they sometimes can be.

  220. Allen Says:

    @SKC #218

    chalk it up to our list of things….
    But just as an example, Mother Theresa.

    Yeh … despite all the politics, a pearl here and there sometimes do squeeze by…! 😉

    Allen

  221. Jerry Says:

    @S. K. Cheung, #218, 219
    @Allen, #220

    SK, you sound like an innocent goose (Just kidding)! Oh, just mimicking the omniscient one, LQ. Yeah, sure, LQ! ::LMAO::

    Allen, I think perchance that there are a number of pearls. Here is a list of Peace Prize laureates I consider to be admirable. Hmmm …

    –Jerry

    1910: Permanent International Peace Bureau
    1912: Elihu Root
    1913: Henri La Fontaine
    1917: International Committee of the Red Cross
    1920: Léon Bourgeois
    1921: Hjalmar Branting / Christian Lange
    1922: Fridtjof Nansen
    1927: Ferdinand Buisson / Ludwig Quidde
    1931: Jane Addams
    1934: Arthur Henderson
    1935: Carl von Ossietzky
    1936: Carlos Saavedra Lamas
    1945: Cordell Hull
    1946: Emily Greene Balch / John R. Mott
    1947: Friends Service Council / American Friends Service Committee
    1949: Lord Boyd Orr
    1950: Ralph Bunche
    1951: Léon Jouhaux
    1952: Albert Schweitzer
    1953: George C. Marshall
    1954: Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees
    1957: Lester Bowles Pearson
    1958: Georges Pire
    1959: Philip Noel-Baker
    1960: Albert Lutuli
    1961: Dag Hammarskjöld (posthumous)
    1962: Linus Pauling
    1964: Martin Luther King, Jr.
    1965: United Nations Children’s Fund
    1968: René Cassin
    1969: International Labour Organization
    1970: Norman Borlaug
    1971: Willy Brandt
    1973: Le Duc Tho
    1974: Seán MacBride
    1975: Andrei Sakharov
    1976: Betty Williams / Mairead Corrigan
    1977: Amnesty International
    1979: Mother Teresa
    1980: Adolfo Pérez Esquivel
    1981: Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees
    1982: Alva Myrdal / Alfonso García Robles
    1983: Lech Wałęsa
    1984: Desmond Tutu
    1985: International Physicians for the Prevention of Nuclear War
    1986: Elie Wiesel
    1987: Óscar Arias
    1988: United Nations Peacekeeping Forces
    1991: Aung San Suu Kyi
    1992: Rigoberta Menchú
    1993: Nelson Mandela
    1994: Yitzhak Rabin
    1995: Joseph Rotblat / Pugwash Conferences on Science and World Affairs
    1996: Carlos Filipe Ximenes Belo / José Ramos-Horta
    1997: International Campaign to Ban Landmines / Jody Williams
    1999: Médecins Sans Frontières
    2000: Kim Dae-jung
    2001: United Nations
    2002: Jimmy Carter
    2003: Shirin Ebadi
    2004: Wangari Maathai
    2005: International Atomic Energy Agency / Mohamed ElBaradei
    2006: Grameen Bank / Muhammad Yunus
    2007: Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change

  222. Allen Says:

    @SKC #221,

    About that list: sure – there are some do-gooders – but there are also many other do-gooders that are not on the list. Getting on the list is then more about politiking then good doing…

    And to be honest, I don’t know most of the people on this list. These are not the movers and shakers who made a difference who really moved the world in real, giant steps toward peace (the last century hasn’t been that peaceful, has it). Unlike the nobel prize in the sciences, the nobel peace prize is a flimsy award awarded based on how popular one looks to the morales of the nobel “committee” at the time… not for real progress toward “peace.”

    What has happened in China in the last 3 decades is unprecedented in human history and will inexorably move the world in real terms and in gigantic steps to peace, stability, and prosperity. I am not talking just about beauty contests here.

    Let’s chalk this also to one of those things we just don’t see eye of eye. I know many who grew up wanting to be a nobel laureate in physics, medicine, etc. – but not one who want that prize in peace! 😉

  223. Jerry Says:

    @S. K. Cheung
    @Allen, #222

    Allen, “but there are also many other do-gooders that are not on the list.” I agree with you whole-heartedly. Like any award, they can choose just a few.

    “These are not the movers and shakers who made a difference who really moved the world in real, giant steps toward peace (the last century hasn’t been that peaceful, has it).” I am curious, who do you consider the movers and shakers, and what did they do to make real, giant steps toward peace?

    In my study of history, it seems that there are many little steps by many people. Occasionally these steps lead to a large leap, like the Berlin Wall coming down. Or the Civil Rights Act of 1964. Yes, Martin Luther King, LBJ, John Lewis, Rosa Parks, Thurgood Marshall and NAACP President Roy Wilkins played a big part in getting that act. But there were 1,000s of marchers, 1,000s of protestors, 1,000s of people at sit-ins, SCLC members, average African-American and white people who took 10,000s of steps. Without those people, it just does not get done. The movers and shakers, well those are the guys who get the credit, some due and some undue.

    Just a for instance, let’s go back to 1955. Rosa Parks refused to give up her seat on a bus. The Montgomery (Alabama) Bus Boycott started. The 1000s of boycotters refused to ride the bus and got very creative with their own means of transportations. And, yes, boycotters were often the targets of violence by racist whites. In 1956, the Federal Court ruled that Alabama’s bus segregation laws were unconstitutional. Many 1,000s of people played their parts in doing small things which led to a change in the laws. Interestingly, there was also pressure to change the laws from white women in Montgomery. “Huh?”, you may ask. Well, their housekeepers could not make it to work or had to have shorter days. Unexpected consequences.

    Let’s take Jack Welch, former head of GE. A mover and shaker if there ever was one. Or we could take any captain of industry. You know how to turn these “rock stars” into simpering fools? Simply, have their secretaries walk out on them in some sort of sympathy strike. A Jack Welch is virtually paralyzed without his secretaries. Who is going to answer the phones, greet his guests, bring him coffee, do the typing, organize his day, schedule his meetings, listen to his problems, and whatever small task needs to be done?

    “Movers and shakers” equals “rock stars” in my book. A big illusion.

    What has happened in China in the last 3 decades is unprecedented in human history and will inexorably move the world in real terms and in gigantic steps to peace, stability, and prosperity. I am not talking just about beauty contests here.

    And that includes the unprecedented, ongoing, environmental destruction. Regarding inexorably moving “the world in real terms and in gigantic steps to peace, stability, and prosperity”, we’ll just have to see. Color me a cynic and skeptic. I just don’t believe in guarantees. Except the ones I mentioned earlier. Nonetheless, I do like your optimism.

    Too bad nobody dreams of being the recipient of the Peace Prize. That was one of the finest moments in Anwar Sadat’s and Yitzhak Rabin’s lives. And their quest for peace cost them their lives. Well, I remember them more than any of the recipients of the other Nobel Prizes. Except Joseph Stiglitz and Linus Pauling.

    Let’s agree to disagree. 🙂

  224. The Trapped! Says:

    @ Allen, Jerry

    It’s sad to hear that no one around Allen wants to win peace prize, (hope it’s not because it’s the prize that DL won because I do not want any Tibetan including DL to be the one who makes Nobel Peace Prize discreditable to 1/5 of world population.)
    The fact that Peace Prize became more controversial over other prize makes me wonder on several facts. Unlike other prize winners, most peace prize winners always had to deal with very controversial situation, like controversy in inter-faith campaign, inter-ethnicity campaign and so on; and these always consist of upsetting certain individuals or group of people. It would be impossible for Martin Luther to achieve what he achieved without upsetting some, actually many, whites and same goes to Nelson Mandela. The Nobel Committee definitely has pressure from lots of directions and sometimes had to bend to the power like they did in the case of dismissing Gandhi as candidate. Same things are again here said in case of DL winning the prize. If Chinese government then was as influential as now is, the story of today will be the other way round–Nobel Committee dismissed DL due to Chinese pressure.
    However, I still think that it’s great that , despite of such pressures from all sides, the committee is trying to find an appropriate one.
    Unless it’s really true that Hu is US agent, I think there is no need to resist the prize because it’s great to have a domestic Nobel Peace Laureate anyway. This is a country with 1/5 world population, but when we count Nobel Prize winners, even our ten fingers are not needed. Shall we always keep insisting on this to be western plot against China? How many Chinese writers/works are actually recommended for Literature Prize candidate by Chinese own people?

    About the impact of the development of China on world peace, I do not want to go either Jerry or Allen’s side, I rather see something in between. People can be optimistic, but guaranteed words with non-guaranteed action will make people lopsided. It’s true that China has the power to stir the world as well steady the world. However, China has long way to go before becoming the missionary of peace.

    I am not feeling that danger that Jerry feels. I think, over environment and other issue, China is moving towards right direction. So, I think Chinese now need real confidence–a real belief that world peace is what we need and that is what we are going to do and that is what we can do. This confidence has to eliminate unnecessary feeling of being attacked and being bullied.

  225. TommyBahamas Says:

    S.K. Cheung Says:

    unlike some Chinese, I see no problem recognizing an activist who works for peace and human rights. Such an activist can be professional, amateur, telepathic, shape-shifitng, horse whisperer…don’t matter none to me.

    Don’t forget Indonesia’s present day Tree man….J R RTolkein didn’t make it all up afterall.

    Walking talking trees do exist~! As for Shapeshiting lizards, well, I wouldn’t be so quick to dismiss David Icke just because we haven’t see them …. just as I have never seen instantneous human combustion, flying saucers , Angels or ghosts, either.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RkizRC5mZYQ

  226. Allen Says:

    @Jerry #223,

    Yes – I suppose progress often do take place in incremental steps. And I am sure there are many valiant efforts by many “small” people who do the world tons of good that go unrecognized … which is sad…

    As for who I think made great strides toward peace in the last century, seeing how the vast number of humanity (in Asia, Africa, as well as Latin America) continue to be shackled by the chains of poverty despite the unprecedented advances in science and technology, I Just don’t see how the last century can be described as a century of peace. I see do-gooders, but not anyone who really tried to challenge the system and status quo in a fundamental way. I don’t think the award should have been awarded at all….

    @The Trapped #224, can’t really disagree much with you there. I hope the next century will bring peace and prosperity to a much greater share of the people in the world than the last…. And I hope the peace prize by the middle to end of the century will mean something for everyone, not a political tool for some – albeit often meant to do some good…

  227. Wahaha Says:

    RUMman, SKC,

    https://www.aotearoa.maori.nz/v2/content/view/108/37/

    https://www.aotearoa.maori.nz/v2/content/view/106/37/

    Thank you very much for reading the links.

    I didnt ask NZ give land back to Maori, all we ask is stopping educating us about Tibet when native seperatists in your countries were treated the same way as in Tibet.

  228. RUMman Says:

    Wahaha,

    First, and most important. I don’t recall attempting to ‘educate’ you about Tibet. I have never had anything much to say about Tibet. I’ve said that it was an Imperial possession of China, was lost, as was later recolonized (or “gloriously liberated” if you must). I don’t see anything controversial there. I don’t recall saying much beyond that. I may have said something and forgotten it, but really the issue is not one that looms large for me me.

    Of course I have been physically assaulted in my own country by Chinese nationalists who accused me of being a pro-Tibet protester (I am not and never have been). Lots of Chinese seem to wrongly assume that I wish to educate them about Tibet, and wish to use violence to prevent me from doing that. Really though, my interest in Tibet doesn’t extend too far beyond ensuring my own physical safety against the type of nationalistic Chinese xenophobes who rampage through foreign cities assaulting non-Chinese people. I’d probably feel safer if you would just set aside the idea that i am trying to educate you about Tibet.

    Second, I don’t see that separatists in New Zealand were or are being treated the same way as in Tibet. You have googled and found a couple of links that paint the New Zealand government in a bad light viz a viz its treatment of Maori resource ownership and radical supporters of Maori separatistism (those detailed in the police raids in question included quite a few non-Maori political activists).

    Regarding the foreshore and seabed issue: this is an ongoing political debate. I admit I have not been following it very closely, but it seems to be very openly discussed and debated in that press. Of course it is only even an issue because Maori already have ownership rights in these areas – i.e. because efforts have already been made to look after their interests.

    Regarding the government’s “anti-terror raids”: the government copped plenty of flak for that episode. It did not go down well at all with most New Zealanders. Many people were disgusted at how the government had infringed on liberties. I think most people saw the whole episode as a bit of a joke though. The idea of Maori separatist terrorists, led by Tame Ite of all people, was just too daft to contemplate. If you had a more in depth knowledge of Maori politics in New Zealand you would appreciate my point. These issues are all freely discussed in the New Zealand media.

    Personally I would put the NZ government’s ‘anti terror raids’ in the context of an alarming global move towards greater police powers, led by the U.S. in the wake of September 11. I think the New Zealand police got cocky after anti-terror legislation was passed and went after an old enemy of theirs (Tame Iti has been a political campaigner for years, and he revels in making a spectacle of himself and getting arrested – also a very good debater though). Furthermore, I think they have embarrassed themselves through their stupid handling of the whole thing and are unlikely to repeat the mistake. The prime minister was also involved (and suffered the negative consequences), though from what I recall her role was merely having knowledge that the police were planning raids.

    New Zealanders by and large did not support the government and police in conducting those raids.

    Your approach to discussing Maori issues (cherry picking negative news stories and linking to them with no context) is not especially helpful. How about educating yourself on European-Maori relations? You could even compare it with Chinese-Aboriginal relations (and Dutch Aboriginal relations) in Taiwan. It would make an interesting comparison. I’m not sure what you would find by doing this, but having spent time in the Taiwanese mountains I noted many similarities between Taiwan aboriginal and NZ Maori culture. If you were genuinely interested in the area, and not just trying to persuade me not to criticize China (a pretty pathetic goal on your part), you would do something like trying to educate yourself as suggested above.

    Moving on to a more general point. . .

    Biculturalism (Maori-Pakeha) in New Zealand is absolutely real. It lies at the core of national identity.

    I don’t believe that the same cannot be said for China. Despite the stuff about 56 minorities, all participating equally in a wonderful nation, the place is clearly Han dominated. The Olympics opening ceremony for example was all about Han culture. The Tibetans, Uigurs and others didn’t get a look in (unless you count the Han kids in fancy dress). A New Zealand Olympics opening ceremony would certainly be very different. And of course New Zealand has a less complex situation in many ways, with one indigenous people and a group of later arrivals.

    The crucial point that I am driving at here is this. Unlike New Zealand, which appears confidently bicultural these days, China clearly feels extremely insecure about its Tibetan and Uigur regions. Some insecurity is not surprising given the imperialist and colonialist history. It would be nice to see it go away though.

    I don’t know about you, but I don’t think demanding a westerner who has lived a large chunk of their life in China “stop educating us about Tibet” (when he wasn’t talking about Tibet anyway, and is clearly reasonably informed on historical and ethnic issues in China) is really the way forward in terms of reducing China’s post-imperial post-colonial guilt complex. Of course I don’t think it does much to help China either.

    Just my 0.50 RMB.

  229. ChinkTalk Says:

    RUMman – I am sorry to hear that your were physically harmed by the Chinese in your own country – personally I have never heard of Chinese as a group attacking people – are you saying that this is in New Zealand that you are attacked. Do you by any chance have any news references to things like that happening. I am not disputing what you are saying, it is just that it usually is a rare occasion that you hear things like that.

    One difference between aboriginals in Canada or New Zealand compared to Tibetans or Uigurs is that the aborignals in Canada and New Zealand do not have foreign funding or interference as the case in China.

    If China is at fault, it should own up to it. Whether China colonized Tibet or Uigur is open to scholarly intepretation and I am not qualify to judge. But I find that many accusations are unfairly made towards China.

    One thing is certain, the British colonized Hong Kong. And I believe their treatment of the Hong Kong Chinese should be open to transparent and independant examination.

    Just my 2 cents Cdn – inflation you know.

  230. Allen Says:

    @RUMman,

    And of course New Zealand has a less complex situation in many ways, with one indigenous people and a group of later arrivals.

    That’s the problem …. to you there is one indigenous people … but if you look at the history of Polynesia in more detail, you will see that in Polynesia, wars, conquests, imperialism (if you will, according to your definition) all took place in its history. There is no one indigenous people. There were many. It’s an insult to gloss over that.

    Now, to be fair, it may appear to be one people today because European Imperialism has so traumatized the society there that all the indigenous people now see themselves as one people.

    Jared Diamond had a very interesting chapter on precisely what I described above in his book Guns, Germs, and Steel (which won a Pulitzer Prize and the Aventis Prize for Best Science Book in 1998).

    My point is that if you look carefully enough, and given the right political flames, any nation or people can be divided, and subdivided, according to the whims of politics.

    Even the so-called “Hans” which so dominate Chinese politics can be subdivided into many, many groups that after the fall of the Qing empire had fought viciously against each other. So have the Tibetans – with many factions fighting against each other over history – with many distinct ethnicities or sub population developing unique dialects and local customs. I don’t see a natural boundary when to stop subdividing.

    I have seen in so many places today where identity based politics has been used as pawns for political purposes. I don’t want to see that for China.

    I want to see a unified China.

    Just the humble opinion of one Chinese among many…

  231. S.K. Cheung Says:

    To RUMman:
    well said. You’ve isolated the reason why the links provided by some are fairly pointless…it’s just dredging through the internet to find at least one other person who might share their view, with no context, and sometimes no relevance.

  232. S.K. Cheung Says:

    To Allen:
    “I don’t see a natural boundary when to stop subdividing.” – I agree. But there probably are practical boundaries, or realistic boundaries. Bottom line, those who would be sub-divided are probably best equipped to tell you when you are infringing on the nuclear group.
    “Identity-based politics” is not necessarily a bad thing if the issues being championed are shared by those who share an identity. Furthermore, those who would be pawns should be so allowed, if it is of their choosing. Far be it for others to tell them what they can or cannot be.

  233. RUMman Says:

    @Allen(230), Sorry, but I don’t get your point at all.

    Look, sorry to say this but you just seem completely uninformed about New Zealand. The topic is New Zealand, not the Pacific (which obviously has multiple indigenous people), so lets keep it narrow.

    I am not ‘insulting’ anyone by saying that New Zealand has one indigenous people. I am simply repeating mainstream Maori views on the subject (well, the mainstream views of everyone really).

    The issue of whether New Zealand had one or more than one indigenous people is slightly controversial. There is a school of thought that claims the Maori arrival in New Zealand displaced another indigenous people – the Moriori. Maori do not like people arguing this theory since it runs totally against their own oral histories and belief systems. There is not much evidence to support this theory and the reality seems to be that Moriori were the indigenous people of the Chatam Islands.

    You say that your point is that any nation or people can be subdivided. Fine. The Maori can certainly be subdivided into tribes, and after first European contact those tribes fought one another more than they fought the Europeans. However, despite that the Maori most certainly see themselves as a single people, and as THE ONLY indigenous people of New Zealand. You could say that Maori became more homogeneous in response to European contact (the Maori king movement saw them set up a monarchy to provide great unity in resisting European encroachment), but I wouldn’t take that to imply that they were not ‘one indigenous people’ even before the Europeans arrived.

  234. RUMman Says:

    @ChinkTalk (229), yes I was attacked in New Zealand.

    Immediately after the event there were several short news pieces mentioning the violence. The main coverage was fairly upbeat.

    I can’t see the links I previously read on this. Maybe they rotated off the relevant news sites. Here is one with part of the story:

    http://home.nzcity.co.nz/news/article.aspx?id=84495&cat=1039&fm=newsmain,narts

    How come you never heard of Chinese as a group attacking people? Isn’t that what the PLA specializes in? I mean seriously. . . You sound like Gavin Menzies pondering on why ‘Chinese’ fought a battle with Vikings, and concluding “they must have been attacked first”.

    The attack on me was filmed. The cameraman initially promised to help identify the attackers. He later reneged on his promise. Apparently the Sichuan Earthquake made it ‘inappropriate’ for him to keep his promise because Chinese people are extremely sensitive and if he helped find for the criminals who assaulted me he might have been seen as a ‘Chinese traitor’ who was ‘attacking China’.

  235. RUMman Says:

    @Chinktalk(229),

    A lot of the news reports on the violence seem to have disappeared. Maybe rotated off websites. Here is one.

    http://home.nzcity.co.nz/news/article.aspx?id=84495&cat=1039&fm=newsmain,narts

    The reporting was mostly fairly upbeat.

    A cameraman filmed some of the attack on me. He had promised to circulate the film to help identify the attackers. Unfortunately the Sichuan Earthquake meant he was unable to make good on his promise. Apparently tracking down Chinese hooligans could have been interpreted as an ‘attack on China’ and he could have been seen as a ‘Chinese traitor’. After all, Chinese are very sensitive.

  236. Allen Says:

    @RUMman #233,

    I don’t disagree with what you wrote – which I don’t think is inconsistent with what I wrote – except that I might take issue with your observation that I seem “uninformed”! 🙁

  237. skyight Says:

    I agree that Allen sometimes seems uninformed, because after WWII, nations of the world formed something called United Nations, and all nations agreed that colonialism was bad. Today, Colonialism is bad word. Although China was closed in coma from 1950-1978, they should try to understand more of these world developments. I think it is only P.R.C China where colonialism is still regarded as good by many people.

  238. ChinkTalk Says:

    RUMman – the following is a copy of your link:

    Violence mars peaceful rally
    Allegations of violent behaviour have marred today’s otherwise peaceful pro-China rally in Auckland
    27 April 2008
    A central city square was transformed into a sea of red and yellow flags as nearly a thousand pro-China supporters rallied in Auckland today.

    Despite the rain the crowd in Aotea Square was in high spirits, chanting Chinese national songs. One of the event organisers, Jim He, says today was about promoting peace and the Beijing Olympics. He says as a Chinese New Zealander he fully supports the Chinese government and the Olympic Games.

    Only two pro-Tibetan protesters attended and at one point were pushed and shoved by some members of the crowd.

    Since the rally however, there have been allegations of violent behaviour.

    One man who says he witnessed a disturbing incident is Chris Mankin, who was driving towards Aotea Square, where the rally took place, when he saw a number of pro-China supporters attacking people in their cars. He says one man drove a flag poll through the window of a car hitting the driver while others shook the car. He says the group then turned on him when he told them to stop.

    It is not clear why the fight broke out, but event organisers say a small, radical group of China supporters attacked the car after being shouted at by its occupants.

    A complaint has been made to the police, but they are not commenting on the matter.

    RUMman – I must state that I am against violence of any sort, so the actions of the pro-China Olympics supporters should be condemned for attacking you and others. Could you give us a bit of information about the whole situation, were you one of the persons inside the cars or one of the protesters. I mean even if you were one of the protesters, you should not have been attacked. So there were over a thousand pro-China supporters and only two protesters, and the pro-China supporters suddenly just turned violent and started attacking people. Would you be so kind as to give us your account of the situation. I have never met anybody that were directly in one of the China-Olympics demonstrations so I am quite intriqued. Thanks.

  239. ChinkTalk Says:

    skylight – thanks for mentioning about the United Nations, I found this article in Wikipedia on the Leaque of Nations, it’s interesting read because it seems to be deja vu on what is going on right now in world affairs, there are some similarities. Are we looking at WWIII soon.

    Mukden Incident
    Main article: Mukden Incident

    Japanese troops entering Shenyang 18 September 1931The Mukden Incident, also known as the “Manchurian Incident” or the “Far Eastern Crisis”, was one of the League’s major setbacks and acted as the catalyst for Japan’s withdrawal from the organization. Under the terms of an agreed lease, the Japanese government had the right to station its troops in the area around the South Manchurian Railway, a major trade route between the two countries, in the Chinese region of Manchuria.[89] In September 1931, a section of the railway lightly damaged by officers and troops of the Japanese Kwantung Army,[90][91] as a pretext for an invasion of Manchuria.[90][92] The Japanese army, however, claimed that Chinese soldiers had sabotaged the railway and in apparent retaliation (acting contrary to the civilian government’s orders[91]) occupied the entire region of Manchuria. They renamed the area Manchukuo, and on 9 March 1932, set up a puppet government with Pu Yi, the former emperor of China, as its executive head.[93] Internationally, this new country was recognised only by the governments of Italy and Germany; the rest of the world still considered Manchuria legally part of China. In 1932, Japanese air and sea forces bombarded the Chinese city of Shanghai, sparking the short war of the January 28 Incident.

    The League of Nations agreed to a request for help from the Chinese government, but the long voyage by ship delayed League officials from investigating the matter. When they arrived, the officials were confronted with Chinese assertions that the Japanese had invaded unlawfully, while the Japanese claimed they were acting to keep peace in the area. Despite Japan’s high standing in the League, the subsequent Lytton Report declared Japan to be in the wrong and demanded Manchuria be returned to the Chinese. Before the report could be voted upon by the Assembly, Japan announced its intention to push further into China. The report passed 42-1 in the Assembly in 1933 (only Japan voted against), but instead of withdrawing its troops from China, Japan withdrew its membership from the League.

    According to the Covenant of the League of Nations, the League should have responded by placing economic sanctions on Japan, or gathered an army and declared war. Neither of these actions was undertaken. The threat of economic sanctions would have been almost useless because the United States was not a League member.[citation needed] Any economic sanctions the League placed on its member states would have been ineffective, as a country barred from trading with other member states could simply turn and trade with the United States. The League could have assembled an army but major powers like as Britain and France were too preoccupied with their own affairs, such as keeping control of their extensive colonies, especially after the turmoil of World War I.[citation needed] Japan was therefore left in control of Manchuria, until the Soviet Union’s Red Army took over the area and returned it to China at the end of World War II.

    Please let me know what you think.

  240. RUMman Says:

    @ChinkTalk

    Some details in that report are slightly wrong. I did not count myself but from other reports I think there were around half a dozen pro-Tibet protesters, definitely more than just two. However, I heard that the main group of pro-Tibet people stayed away that day. Meanwhile, the number of Chinese seems to have been between 3000 and 5000 (range of figures given in media).

    I was not one of the people inside the cars. I never saw that incident. I just heard about it.

    There were various different incidents. From memory:

    – The small group of pro-Tibet protesters were attacked. They were surrounded by the crowd, banners stolen, punched etc., and forced to leave.

    – That incident in the car.

    – Another incident (think it was a separate one anyway) where a group attacked a Taxi when the driver (Indian guy) shouted “Free Tibet” or something.

    – Incident where an old man who was not protesting but happened to be walking past tried to discuss Tibet with Chinese protesters. They poked him in the face with their poles. I don’t think he was actually hurt but it sounds unpleasant.

    – Incident where I got attacked. I was not protesting or trying to discuss anything with anyone. I was simply there to observe the event. I was attacked when I tried to take a picture of a stolen Tibetan flag being trampled on. Chinese standing near me took exactly the same picture and were not assaulted. I was asked to leave by a protest marshal because, in his words, the area was “not safe for New Zealanders”. In other words, the assault clearly had a major racist dimension.

    – Incident outside McDonalds where some Polynesian females threw a paper cup at Chinese protesters and then started a shoving match. This was reported in Chinese media as ‘Tibetan protesters assaulting Chinese’. However, so far as I am aware the Polynesians were simply bums who spend time sitting on the street and sometimes starting fights. The Chinese victims of the assault never mentioned their assailants being pro-Tibet protesters.

    You can read about some of this here.

    http://bunnyhugs.org/2008/05/01/ugly-nationalistic-chinese-demonstration-in-auckland/

  241. ChinkTalk Says:

    This should settle everything – the real Nobel prizes

    http://www.chinadaily.com.cn/world/2008-10/04/content_7076715.htm

  242. Skylight Says:

    @Ctalk,

    I see it as a victory for China that the whole world (except Japan) acknowledged that Japan was illegally occupying and colonizing China. Clearly this made the Japanese claim to this area very weak in the eyes of the world. It lost its legitimacy to this area when the world spoke through the League of Nations. It is really incredible that Japan left the League of Nations in protest! Today no nation would leave United Nations although it disagreed with its resolutions.

    BTW: Did you know United Nations passed three resolutions on Tibet, in 1959, 1961 and 1965, but unlike in the case of Japan and China, the resolutions didn’t help the Tibetans against their “liberators”.

  243. skylight Says:

    @RUMman

    Really enjoyed your report from New Zealand. The snow lion flag is beautiful in my opinion, even Chairman Mao approved of the Snow lion flag and said to Dalai Lama that that Tibetans should keep the snow lion flag! I see no reason why Tibetans cannot carry their flag together with Chinese red star flag.

    —————————————————————————————————————————————
    During one of the several discussions that the Dalai Lama and Mao Tse-tung had, Mao (suddenly) said, ‘Don’t you have a flag of your own, if you have one, you can hoist it here (on the Guest House)’.” Takla was surprised to hear Mao Tse-tung speaking thus.

    “One day, Mao unexpectedly came to visit the Dalai Lama at his residence… During their conversation, Mao suddenly said, ‘I heard that you have a national flag, do you? They do not want you to carry it, isn’t that right’?”

    “Since Mao asked this with no warning that the topic was to be discussed, the Dalai Lama just replied, ‘We have an Army flag.’ I thought that was a shrewd answer because it didn’t say whether Tibet had a national flag. Mao perceived that the Dalai Lama was concerned by his question and immediately told him, ‘That is no problem. You may keep your national flag.’ Mao definitely said ‘national’ flag.”

    Mao added that in the future the Communist Party of China could also let Xinjiang and Inner Mongolia have their own flags. He then asked the Dalai Lama if it would be fine for him to hoist the national flag of the People’s Republic of China in addition to the Tibetan flag. Phunwang says that the young Lama nodded his head and said yes. “This was the most important thing that Mao told the Dalai Lama, and I was amazed to hear it,”

    -Written by Phunwang in his biography “Tibetan Revolutionary” describing talks between Chairman Mao and Dalai Lama in 1955, Phunwang was the first Tibetan Communist cadre who also acted as translator between Chairman Mao and Dalai Lama.
    ————————————————————————————————————————————————

  244. ChinkTalk Says:

    skylight – “Did you know United Nations passed three resolutions on Tibet, in 1959, 1961 and 1965, but unlike in the case of Japan and China, the resolutions didn’t help the Tibetans against their “liberators”.”

    When did the PRC join the UN

  245. ChinkTalk Says:

    RUMman – what is a protest marshall

  246. ChinkTalk Says:

    skylight; RUMman – Please let me know what you think of this article. Do you think the Basque should be allowed to separate from Spain

    http://www.ctv.ca/servlet/ArticleNews/story/CTVNews/20081004/basque_bombing_081004/20081004?hub=World

  247. skylight Says:

    @Ctalk

    You have to look at the specific case, you cannot compare all independence/autonomy movements. Just like you cannot say North Korea, Cuba and P.R.China is the same just because they officially have Communist system.

    I dont know much about Basque case, but I think Tibet is better compared to countries such as Poland, Ukraine, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Ireland, Algeria, Mongolia.

  248. RUMman Says:

    @ChinkTalk,

    First. . .on New Zealand thing. . .

    I guess ‘protest marshal’ was just the term I came up with. For some weird reason the police were nearly totally absent from the Aotea Square demonstration, even though anyone following the news around the world could have known there was potential for trouble. The police told me that they had left security up to the protest organizers. Thus there were a group of ‘protest marshals’, wearing armbands and ID tags. They were sort of organizing things rather than participating. That is, they didn’t hold banners or anything themselves. When I arrived things were quite intense and the ‘protest marshals’ were trying to make a sort of barrier between the crowd and the pro-Tibet protesters, apparently asking the pro-Tibet protesters to leave, plus of course protecting me from the crowd, and then ordering me to leave because the area was “not safe for New Zealanders”. I’m not sure what they did the rest of the time. They probably did things like help set up the stage, tell early arrivals where to go, and help clean up rubbish after the thing finished.

    The ‘protest marshals’ did quite a good job, so congratulations are probably deserved. They were doing police work though. Civilians should not be doing police work. Especially, non-NZ nationals should not be doing police work in New Zealand (some of the ‘protest marshals’ were students without permanent residency). Also bear in mind that the ‘protest marshals’ knew many of the people throwing punches at the Tibet protesters. This made it hard for them to be truly neutral. Some of the follow up was odd. You had individuals who had viciously assaulted the pro-Tibet protesters apologizing on websites like Sky Kiwi to the protest marshals they had inadvertently jostled. Maybe the ‘protest marshals’ and the assailants knowing each other was actually a good thing in terms of ensuring things did not escalate further, but obviously it meant the pro-Tibet protesters were unfairly treated. The people attacking them should have been restrained, arrested, and charged with assault. Instead the pro-Tibet protesters were forced to leave. After that, Caucasians in general were told to leave.

    So the protest marshals did quite well, but really police were what was needed.

    Second. . . on the Basque thing. . .

    I do not have much knowledge of the Basque situation, the history etc. The article you linked to was about a bomb attack. I don’t have a lot of sympathy for bombers. As a general matter of principle though, I do have sympathy for minority nationalities that want to break away from larger countries. I do not see the real problem. If full independence is not possible surely some kind of compromise can be worked out (maybe something like the devolution that has been happening in the UK)?

    The Basque thing has been going on for decades now. It is showing no signs of stopping. Perhaps the Spanish government could be doing more for Basque separatists?

  249. FOARP Says:

    @RUMman – I saw similar marshals at the protests in London – armband wearing students running in formation along the route of the march, saying that they were there to ‘protect’ their fellow Chinese from the pro-Tibet demonstrators. Thankfully the Metropolitan police were there in strength, but I quite agree with you, I too was deeply disturbed to see such obvious evidence of foreign citizens organising themselves and presuming to act in the role of police on British soil – we saw the results of this at the protests in South Korea.

  250. ChinkTalk Says:

    skylight – “I dont know much about Basque case, but I think Tibet is better compared to countries such as Poland, Ukraine, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Ireland, Algeria, Mongolia.”

    Would you please explain to me the similarities between these countries you mentioned compared to Tibet.

    RUMman – ” The police told me that they had left security up to the protest organizers.”

    and “The ‘protest marshals’ did quite a good job, so congratulations are probably deserved. They were doing police work though. Civilians should not be doing police work. Especially, non-NZ nationals should not be doing police work in New Zealand (some of the ‘protest marshals’ were students without permanent residency).”

    I agree that civilians should not be doing police work, but I think you have indicated that the New Zealand police left the security up to the organizers, so at least the organizers are trying to maintain certain amount order. Granted the “protest marshals” should have prevented attacks on you and the pro-Tibet protesters, but as you have mentioned these “protest marshals” are students and not trained police officers. But on the other hand, a disabled Chinese girl who was carrying the Olympics flame was attacked by pro-Tibet assailants when she was supposedly protected by trained Western police.

  251. RUMman Says:

    Not to trivialize the assault on the disabled Chinese fencer, but was not the target of the attack the torch rather than her? I’m not saying she was not assaulted in the process of the pro-Tibet moron trying to grab to torch. She was. I’m just saying that, idiotic as the pro-Tibet moron was, his ultimate target appears to have been the torch. He was not specifically trying to hurt the girl, drive her away, or anything like that.

    I never heard what happened to that guy. Hopefully he ended up in court charged with something or other?

    But getting back to my point, the situation with that guy seems a little different to what happened in Aotea Square. The situation in Aotea Square became an all out assault on anyone the crowd believed to be pro-Tibet, which unfortunately appeared to translate, at least for a while, into ‘white people’. After the pro-Tibet protesters’ flags etc. had been stolen and trampled on, the Chinese crowd continued assaulting the pro-Tibet protesters themselves. The behavior was not about grabbing and controlling symbols (i.e. Olympic torches, flags, banners, etc), it was about punching, kicking, and driving away the non-Chinese ‘enemy’. The violence was being meted out on people, not symbols.

  252. skylight Says:

    @Ctalk

    If you meet a person from those countries, they might be able to explain the similarities to you better than I am able to do.

  253. raffiaflower Says:

    hi jerry, thanks for the comment. I did not respond tout de suite bcos it’s been a long holiday break.
    I was sort of shooting blanks @ random, and aiming at no one in particular. Certainly everyone should be free to criticise, and be criticised. There is much to debate about the actions of the chinese govt, which is what this blog is about, as there is about the bush administration, or the israeli.
    But i say if someone wants to damn china on human rights, then it’s par for the course that comparisons are made with their own behaviour, past or present.
    The moral authority over someone else’s behaviour is compromised especially if you refused to help when they needed it in the toughest hours.
    Like this: an absentee parent comes back into the life of a grown-up child left to fend for herself early on but has found her forward bearings. Parent runs down every aspect of the child – her grooming, her housekeeping, her child raising ways, holding her to the older’s standards.
    Child resents it, right? The younger person probably won’t mind input, if it’s constructive and not self-referential, especially when the parent has led less than an exemplary life herself. This is what I mean by the condescension and arrogance of the west.
    As for my conjecture about hu jia, you may wish to read up, google or speak to frens in china.
    As for the people he’s helped and those he’s not, put it this way: china has 1.3 billion and hu jia claims to speak for the human rights of many. Figure out the math.
    The west is no monolith, just as Chinese govt and Chinese people – native born or overseas – are also not a single entity. I am not from China, and have nothing against Hu Jia.
    Unfortunately, any engagement with a Western individual must usually be predicated on the premise that, as a Chinese person, you are already flawed and inferior in thought and behaviour, brainwashed, nationalistic, and must play the role of beggar maid to King Cophetua.
    The alternative is, you can become a banana, and bash China with all the zeal of the convert!
    But, moi, je reste bien dans ma peau, Jerry. Let me relate this personal Chinese-Western encounter, during my working period in Hong Kong.
    This came from an associate from an English-speaking country: “ The way we write, express ourselves, think, we will always be different from you.’’ That is, superior.
    Whatever. Cue to exit job, and dump all my work on that person. :-0

  254. BMY Says:

    I don’t think Hu Jia is a traitor.
    He chose the audience who give him a fame and many people dislike him because of the audience he chose.

    I beleive there are many people on the grounds who have done much more help on AIDS and poor people but don’t have fame like Hu Jia has.

    Regardless, I don’t see how Hu Jia post a threat to the state security . To arrest this man is unlawful and stupid.

  255. ChinkTalk Says:

    RUMman- do you think the 3,000 to 5,000 (per your estimate) pro-China Olympics Chinese people are all racists?

    skylight – I do know people from some of those countries and they do not see themselves in any way similar to Tibetans.

  256. FOARP Says:

    @Chinktalk – I’m going to take a wild guess and say that whoever said that New Zealanders (and apparently that means white people, since some of the people in the crowd were also NZ citizens) should get out of the square thought that they might be attacked just because they were white. RUMman is not the one who said this.

  257. ChinkTalk Says:

    FORAP – to me, it all boils down to propaganda from the pro-China group vis-a-vis the propaganda from the pro-West group. So far I think no one is completely wrong but no one is completely right either. And that is why instead of looking for differences maybe we should start searching for similarities. I do admire RUMman and skylight because they have lived in China and they have lived with the Chinese people. I guess I was playing the devil’s advocate in order to maintain some balance in relation to perspective and truth. We all exaggerate and tell little white lies (or shade the truth) to strengthen our positions. That is fine by me, we are only human. The Nobel Peace prize should be awarded to someone who can find similarities for peace rather than stoke differences.

  258. skylight Says:

    @Ctalk

    Happy to learn that you know some people from those countries.

    Would you please explain to me the differences they see between their own countries and Tibet?

  259. RUMman Says:

    @ChinaTalk (255).

    No I don’t think the entire crowd were racists.

    However, the crowd did contain a large, hostile, aggressive, nationalistic, and apparently racist minority.

  260. skylight Says:

    The Nobel Peace Prize for 2008 will be announced on friday 10 October at 11.00 Central European Time.

    Latest update on Betsafe.com bookmakers odds for Nobel Peace Prize:

    Others on request 1.00
    Hu Jia (CHN) 5.50
    Lidia Yusupova (RUS) 7.00
    Thich Quang Do (BUR) 7.00
    Rebiya Kadeer (CHN) 8.00
    Wei Jingsheng (CHN) 8.00
    The Cluster Munitions Coalition 8.00
    Morgan Tsvangirai (ZIM) 9.00
    Charm Tong (BUR) 10.00
    Gao Zhisheng (CHN) 10.00
    Yang Chunlin (CHN) 12.00
    Natalia Novozhilova (RUS) 12.00
    Min Ko Naing (BUR) 15.00
    Khin Maung Win (BUR/NOR) 15.00
    Iftikhar Muhammad Chaudhry (PAK) 16.00
    Ibrahim Gambari (NIG) 20.00
    Mesfin Woldemariam (ETI) 20.00
    African Union 20.00
    Dalit Human Rights (IND) 25.00
    Matti Ahtisaari (FIN) 25.00
    Mordechai Vanunu (ISR) 28.00
    Bulambo Lembelembe Josué (KON) 30.00
    Hans Blix 35.00
    Reporters Sans Frontières 40.00
    Human Rights Watch 40.00
    Helmut Kohl 45.00
    Save The Children 50.00
    Bono 50.00
    Sheila Watt-Cloutier (CAN) 50.00
    UNCHR 50.00
    International Criminal Court 50.00
    Bob Geldorf 50.00
    UN High Commissioner for Refugees 50.00
    Amnesty International 50.00
    Red Cross International 60.00
    Carla Del Ponte (SWI) 60.00
    Council of Europe 80.00
    European Union 100.00
    Greenpeace 100.00
    Kgalema Motlanthe (SOA) 125.00
    Mwai Kibaki/Raila Odinga (KEN) 200.00
    Roo Moo-hyun and Kim Jong-il 200.00
    Eduard Shevardnadze (GEO) 350.00
    Mikheil Saakasjvili (GEO) 500.00
    Robert Mugabe (ZIM) 800.00
    George W. Bush (USA) 800.00
    Vladimir Putin (RUS) 800.00

  261. Bob Says:

    Gotta love international bookies’ bet on Nobel figgin’ Peace Prize winnar.

    If the Western democracy snobs had a lesson to learn, they should look at no further than the Dalai Lama case. What positive effects has it achieved since the exile Tibetan god-king was awarded the prize? Zero, zilch, nada.

    Rename the thingy as Agent Provocateur of the Year Award, Hu Jia may have my vote.

  262. skylight Says:

    @Bob,

    I think you have too high expectations from an award. An award alone will not create peace or resolve conflicts.

    However, for many previously “unknown” prize winners, it can work as a catalyst and it can become a “door opener” for the winner, give him/her easier access to world leaders, make him/her more known around the world and to get a larger audience for his/her message. Such effects have been noted by many previous Nobel Peace Prize winners, including the Dalai Lama, Desmond Tutu, Shirin Ebadi etc.

    Remember, in the 1970s and early 1980s, Dalai Lama and the Tibet issue was almost unknown to the world. This changed in 1989 for the world. Almost 20 years later, in March 2008 it changed for China and Chinese people.

  263. Bob Says:

    @skylight,

    I think you have too high expectation from the “world,” which, apart from a handful of hippies, either don’t actually give a shit or cannot do a jack about Tibet.

    At the end of the day, Tibet issues — whatever they are, real or phantom — can only be resolved by the Chinese themselves, Tibetan-Chinese included, definitely.

  264. ChinkTalk Says:

    skylight – I should not be speaking for them, I will let them know about this blog and ask for their input.

  265. skylight Says:

    @Bob

    Firstly, you need awareness and education, then recognition, and finally action and real change. It is a long process, don’t despair!

    The Chinese government position is that there is no “Tibet issue”, both in public and in private meetings with Dalai Lamas envoys.

    They say that all tibetans are living happy and liberated and are enjoying human rights. That is why I believe it is so difficult to solve the issue today with the Chinese government, because of this total disconnect of perceptions on the ground. Clearly, we need more awareness among Chinese about the truth of the Tibet issue.

  266. S.K. Cheung Says:

    To Raffiaflower:
    “But i say if someone wants to damn china on human rights, then it’s par for the course that comparisons are made with their own behaviour, past or present” – present behaviour, absolutely. But past behaviour? If such past behaviour is objectionable, shouldn’t it serve as a cautionary tale that’s not worthy of repeating, rather than justifying exactly such a repeat of history? I mean, wouldn’t it be ridiculous if a country said “well, China had their cultural revolution, so now we should have one too” ?

  267. Jerry Says:

    @raffiaflower, #253
    @S.K. Cheung, #266

    But i say if someone wants to damn china on human rights, then it’s par for the course that comparisons are made with their own behaviour, past or present.
    The moral authority over someone else’s behaviour is compromised especially if you refused to help when they needed it in the toughest hours.

    If a Westerner wants to get on a soapbox and lecture to, ridicule, pontificate at and/or rail at the Chinese or their government for human rights violation, then I too would wonder about their moral authority or moral high ground. People who lecture, ridicule, pontificate and rail make it very difficult for me to swallow their message, whatever that may be. But I would dismiss neither the Chinese nor Western human rights violations. Two wrongs don’t make a right.

    Here is what I see happening, at times, here at this blog. A responsible, valid criticism is made of China on some issue. Then I see a response coming back which criticizes the critic, his country, and makes comparison with a similar issue in his country. Sometimes the criticism is needlessly personal, sometimes bordering on the hysterical. This does not advance the cause of the suffering in either country. It may be par for the course. But as SK points out in #266, shouldn’t past objectionable behavior be a cautionary tale from which we can learn. The failure to learn from history has caused much suffering by many people.

    Regarding moral authority, I think very few possess it. We are all human.

    Hu Jia is a non-starter for me. It was very interesting to see all of the rhetoric and energy when his name was invoked. I am sure there was truth along with the hyperbole I read. I certainly don’t know what is what when it comes to Hu Jia.

    Unfortunately, any engagement with a Western individual must usually be predicated on the premise that, as a Chinese person, you are already flawed and inferior in thought and behaviour, brainwashed, nationalistic, and must play the role of beggar maid to King Cophetua.

    At this blog, it seems that there is a certain amount of similar flak thrown at Westerners. Ah, c’est la vie. Vive le Tour!! I am sorry that Westerners treat you poorly.

    This came from an associate from an English-speaking country: “ The way we write, express ourselves, think, we will always be different from you.’’ That is, superior.
    Whatever. Cue to exit job, and dump all my work on that person. :-0

    Isn’t ignorance, hubris and blind stupidity wonderful? I hope he/she suffered from a nervous breakdown from the extra work. LMAO

    Regarding bananas, I assume that you are referring to Western-born offspring of Chinese/Asian parents. Based on the many discussions with my friends in the US, China is not their only target. They drive their parents nuts, too. In fact, I would say that the parents suffer far more than China. 😀

  268. ChinkTalk Says:

    skylight – “I dont know much about Basque case, but I think Tibet is better compared to countries such as Poland, Ukraine, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Ireland, Algeria, Mongolia.”

    The following is a quote from the attached link in which in reference to the current global financial turmoil, the Czech FM made a very keen observation on how we are moving towards the Communist system with the state participation in private enterprises. Iceland just borrowed 4 billion Euros from Russia. I don’t know why Iceland does not approach Britain, France, or Germany for the money, since they are the established Western democracies. I guess asking the US for money is out of the question at the moment. But I do believe the US will come out of this fine. My point is that you are linking Tibet with some of the former Soviet Union countries, but now IT APPEARS that some countries are warming up to the communal system, including the US, Britan, France and Germany.

    “Showing how hard it is to agree a common line with ease in Europe, Czech Finance Minister Miroslav Kalousek was quoted by a newspaper as saying Europe’s politicians were going mad with ideas of such big rises in deposit insurance.

    “Politicians in Europe are going crazy. We didn’t live through 40 years of real socialism only to return to it on the soil of the European Union,” he was quoted by daily Hospodarske Noviny as saying.”

    (http://www.canada.com/topics/news/story.html?id=4c376de7-964e-47ee-8a26-0d0460360f51)

  269. ChinkTalk Says:

    The West has a “do as I say not as I do” mentality. Remember the West was insisting that China let its currency float freely. Here is a quote from Atimes.

    “China’s financial system, even after three decades of reforms, remains pretty much closed by standards of a free economy. In consequence, it has been less savaged than many other countries as the financial crisis has rippled out from the United States to Europe and more or less the rest of the world”

    (http://www.atimes.com/atimes/China_Business/JJ08Cb01.html

    Does the US know beforehand that this financial tsunami is going to happen, I don’t know. But does the Chinese government know and that is why they resisted so hard the floating of their currency. I don’t know.

    But I do know that Enron, the hedge fund wonderboy at one time, needed 5 billion US to be rescued by the Clinton administration, was run by a couple of Nobel Prize Laureates in economics. So much for the prestige of the Nobel.

    And with the Asian financial crisis, the West advised the Asian countries that needed help to let their private enterprises alone and allow them to fend for themselves, and now the US and Europe is doing exactly the opposite to what they have advised the Asian countries.
    (http://www.atimes.com/atimes/Southeast_Asia/JJ03Ae01.html)

  270. skylight Says:

    @Ctalk,

    It’s a bit difficult to follow your arguments from Tibet and human rights to the current financial crisis. In my opinion you have a superficial view of the financial crisis, and your suggestions that the financial crisis is a “West vs. Asia” or “West vs. Communal systems of governance” doesn’t sync with reality.

  271. Bob Says:

    @skylight #265

    If memory serves me correctly, Tibet issues 西藏問題 have always been acknowledged by the top leaders of PRC. Under Mao, to cater for special situation in Tibet, land reform etc. was postponed long after it had taken place in much of the rest of PRC. Post Cultural Revolution, CCP Secretary General Hu Yaobang directed orders to let Tibetans have more religious freedom than most Han Chinese did. Examples are abundant, but I’ll leave them at those.

    You are right the Chinese need more awareness and the truth about Tibet. For instance, the connection between Dalai Lama and former Nazi members wasn’t all that well known in China back then. Stuff like the practice of polyandry would also be an interesting topic.

  272. ChinkTalk Says:

    skylight – “and your suggestions that the financial crisis is a “West vs. Asia” or “West vs. Communal systems of governance” doesn’t sync with reality.”

    I don’t think it would be out of touch with reality if one suggests that there is a “West vs Communism” metality in the West. I am not convinced that most Western people care about human rights for the Tibetan people, much of these hooplas are for grandstanding against China. Anti-sinoism if you like. If people really care about human rights, it should not be just for the Tibetans, but also for the Aboriginals of North America, the Palestinians, the Basques, and also against Racism, Gay rights, Women’s rights etc. It appears to me that if the country is pro-West, there is no human rights problems there eventhough there are atrocities commited. Countless women are abused and murdered in North America. Human rights should be universal and not just used against your opponents.

  273. Blake Says:

    Hu Jia has very close ties with the CIA and its funding arm the National Endowment for Democracy. In the USA, if a citizen conspires with a foreign intelligence agency attempting to destabilize the government, we call it treason. Why should we expect China’s government to behave any differently?

  274. S.K. Cheung Says:

    To Blake:
    because all this guy did appears to have been to speak to some media, and write a few articles. I mean, i know the pen’s mightier than the sword, but jeez louise, is China so inherently unstable that….yada yada…I’m sure you know where I’m going with this.

  275. Blake Says:

    S.K. Cheung,

    For years Hu Jia worked with the CIA/NED backed Chinese Democracy Movement, the group that led the Tiananmen Square protests in 1989…although Hu Jia wasn’t involved with them at the time. Do a little research. He has done much more than just write a few articles. He actively conspired with foreign intelligence agencies attempting to destabilize China’s government. If a US citizen did what he did, they would be arrested and charged with treason. Make no mistake, Hu Jia is an instrument of Western Imperialism.

  276. S.K. Cheung Says:

    If the guy did half as much as you suggest he may have done, do you think all he’d get in China is jail for his troubles? Or if China had evidence of the activities you suggest….scrap that, I don’t think China subscribes to rules of evidence anyhow.
    Wow, “western imperialism”, scary sounding stuff. Must keep you up at nights…

  277. Blake Says:

    S.K. Cheung,
    All of this is easy enough to verify. Do a little research. The NED makes no secret of the fact that they are the funding arm for the CIA, in fact, that is the why they were created in the first place and they admit it on their website. Also, they openly admit supporting the Chinese Democracy Movement which is one of Hu Jia’s main causes. This isn’t a secret, or even well-hidden. However, most Americans are completely ignorant about it because they just sheepishly believe whatever the government tells them to believe.

  278. S.K. Cheung Says:

    And again, if all this is as true as you claim, wouldn’t Hu have met the business end of a CCP firing squad long ago? We should be asking if Hu deserves the Nobel posthumously.

  279. Blake Says:

    S.K. Cheung,

    And again, you obviously haven’t even bothered to check the facts for yourself. Don’t take my word for it, and do some research. Wikipedia has much of the information you will need, and you can verify it with information on the NED’s own website. This is not difficult information to find and verify…it just takes a minimal amount of effort.

    As for why Hu Jia hasn’t been executed, ironically, this probably has a lot to do with his ties to the NED. Reporters Without Borders, also a NED-supported organization, has done a good job at portraying Hu Jia as an oppressed human rights worker and blogger. Executing Hu Jia would result in a flurry of anti-Chinese propaganda from the West.

  280. S.K. Cheung Says:

    You’re right. Haven’t bothered.
    Wow, NED should nominate themselves for the Peace Prize, since they seem to have 2 horses in the race this year, based on your assertions.
    So what you’re saying is, China won’t execute someone whom they have reason to believe has committed treason against her, because of what the west might think? This from a country who spares no effort in casting broad definitions of “internal matters”. That’s priceless.

  281. Blake Says:

    S.K. Cheung,

    Make that (at least) three. Gao Zhisheng also has close ties with the NED.

    Believe it or not, the Chinese government does care what the West thinks. After all, we are their best customers. They probably figure executing Hu Jia would be more damaging to their government than leaving him alive.

    I would like to add that I don’t think Hu Jia deserves execution or even arrest…I’m just explaining why the Chinese government feels it is justified in its actions. However, I don’t think Hu Jia should even be considered for a Nobel Prize. Personally, I think some of the NED’s efforts have had a positve effect in China. Compared to conditions before the Tiananmen Square Protests in 1989, China is a much improved society. Of course they still have a ways to go.

    I’m truly thankful to live in a country where a conversation like this can even take place. For all of China’s recent progress, If I were Chinese, I don’t think I would post comments like these about the Chinese government. Luckily, I live in a country where I don’t have to worry about being hauled off to prison just for something I said. Just a minute, there’s someone at the door….

  282. Blake Says:

    Just the pizza guy.

    Of the names on the BetSafe.com list, I like Save the Children. What could be more important than providing food for the millions of children that starve to death each year? Gandhi would also be a good choice, but he is not on the list.

  283. Jerry Says:

    @ChinkTalk, #269

    But I do know that Enron, the hedge fund wonderboy at one time, needed 5 billion US to be rescued by the Clinton administration, was run by a couple of Nobel Prize Laureates in economics. So much for the prestige of the Nobel.

    CT, some questions. I know that Enron under Skillings and Lay were no group of choirboys and choirgirls, they were criminals. I don’t understand some of these connections you wrote about. Would you mind clarifying and explaining. Enron, hedge fund wonderboy? $5 billion bailout by Clinton administration? Run by Nobel Economic Prize laureates?

    Any citations for these statements?

  284. Bob Says:

    Guess what, Roger Yonchien Tsien 錢永健 is the newest member to the growing list of Nobel Prize winners of Chinese descent. Tsien is one of the three recipients to share this year’s Nobel Prize in chemistry for his work on green fluorescent protein. Word has it he is a (distant) nephew of Tsien Hsue-shen 钱学森 known as the “Father of Chinese Rocketry.”

  285. ChinkTalk Says:

    @Jerry

    Like RUMman #240 -“There were various different incidents. From memory.”

    I recalled only from memory based on what I read from local newspapers. I will search for them from appropriate sites.

  286. S.K. Cheung Says:

    To Blake:
    “I’m truly thankful to live in a country where a conversation like this can even take place” – frankly, I think this would be a great gauge of China’s progress. I think China will be a much better place when this conversation can take place there, unfettered.

    BTW, that’s a good one with the guy at the door thing…. 🙂

  287. Dan Says:

    I agree with Kai. The Chinese Communist government has done more for world peace than any other countries in the world. Despite the Western accusations of human rights, corruptions, Darfu,Tibet etc, – while I do agree that there are serious problems, but no one nation is innocent of faults, I sure would like a finer examination of how the Chinese were treated under British rule in Hong Kong, – China has done more for world stability than other countries. The Italians have the decency to pay Lybia $5B for its colonial days. Shouldn’t the British pay something to the Hong Kong Chinese. I thought the “peace” prize is recognition for work on bridging opposing forces – like in the case of Henry Kissinger and Le Duc Tho, not one that instigates conflict. If one gets a peace prize for simply “fighting” for social justice, environement, etc. than I should get the “peace” prize by going out everyday and complain about every injustice that happens along the way. The more difficult task is really bringing peace to the Middle East for example. There is no democracy involved in the Nobel prizes because they are determined by five anonymous members in secrecy.

  288. Bob Says:

    On the eve of announcement of the 2008 Nobel Peace Prize winner, I read some background material.

    [per Wikipedia] According to Nobel’s will, the Peace Prize should be awarded “to the person who shall have done the most or the best work for fraternity between nations, for the abolition or reduction of standing armies and for the holding and promotion of peace congresses.”

    This reaffirms my statement earlier in this blog that Nobel would be agonizing in his grave over the hijacked political move by the current committee in Norway if Hu Jia turned out to be the recipient. Neither the manner in which Hu Jia has conducted to advance his causes nor the decision to award him the Nobel Peace Prize is in fundamental agreement with the goal of betterment of fraternity between nations.

    Simply put, Nobel Peace Prize is by no means the same as Human Rights Activist (or some other friggin’ names similar to this bloated term) Award.

  289. Wukailong Says:

    “Simply put, Nobel Peace Prize is by no means the same as Human Rights Activist (or some other friggin’ names similar to this bloated term) Award.”

    What did Al Gore and the IPCC do to promote world peace? Were there any angry protests at the time? Of course not, but it’s good that the question is brought up. The peace prize stopped being a peace prize a long time ago, but I still think it’s an honor to get it.

    Recommended reading:

    http://www.zompist.com/ask.html#26

    “To put this in some perspective, this is the same prize that’s also been awarded to Yasser Arafat and Henry Kissinger. An alien scanning the prize list might be forgiven for assuming that Gore won the prize for causing climate change and then backing off later on.

    (…) It’s also clear from the list that the prize isn’t so much for peace as for humanitarianism— cf. the awards to Mother Theresa, the ILO, Martin Luther King, and the Red Cross.”

  290. Wukailong Says:

    If Hu Jia gets the peace prize and China begins to complain, I will, as a Swedish national whose heart is bleeding for my Norwegian compatriots, stage a one-day boycott of all goods Chinese and protest this blatant incursion into their internal affairs and right of self-determination. 🙂

  291. saimneor Says:

    Is it a big deal? I mean I can understand people think NP Chemistry and Physics are important, partially because the modern science has its roots from the Renaissance and was developed almost exclusively in the West for many years, until the east start to learn from it. If Alfred Nobel is considered as the poster child of that development, his judgment can be trusted.

    But peace? It seems the Swedish people may reach a bit too far. Can one nation’s value system be applied to many different people with entirely different culture and tradition? The level of pride in this prize has pushed the value down, way down. You need to develop a world view first, before you can recognize achievements in world peace, otherwise it becomes a display of your own arrogance.

    So I do not think chinese will complain too much. They will probably laugh at it more often.

  292. Bob Says:

    Saimneor, “Peace” was Nobel’s own brainchild and one of the five original prizes designated in Nobel’s will. Only “Economics” was added later on by the Swedes.

  293. saimneor Says:

    Not arguing with Alfred. I am pointing out the recognition of a prize is linked to the (current) evaluation process. We are not buying simply because someone said so. At least they can not force me to respect them.

  294. Wukailong Says:

    The peace prize is Norwegian.

  295. Wukailong Says:

    “Can one nation’s value system be applied to many different people with entirely different culture and tradition?”

    It of course depends on what you mean by Chinese or other people’s culture being “entirely different”. That’s quite a bold statement, actually. 🙂

    I’m not sure I respect the Nobel establishment that much (always thought their evening party is a bit silly, and the Swedish Academy takes itself way too seriously), so I’m with you on not being forced to respect them. You don’t have to.

  296. S.K. Cheung Says:

    To Saimneor:
    “At least they can not force me to respect them.” – and no one is asking you to. But there are many many others who do. And that’s their choice. Which is why, even if all 1.3 billion CHinese don’t give a hoot, the Nobels will still be the most famous prizes in the world. And let’s face it, if no one cared, would this thread be heading towards 3 bills in comments?

  297. Jerry Says:

    @S.K. Cheung #296

    Good points, SK. The Nobel Prizes bring people to my attention I probably would never know otherwise. Yes, they can’t give a prize to every worthy candidate. But they do the best they can.

    “And let’s face it, if no one cared, would this thread be heading towards 3 bills in comments?” Amen!

    BTW, the Asian stock markets are getting hammered today. Even the Nikkei 225, which is down 13.50% right now.

    Speculation as to whether Morgan Stanley will make it to Tuesday when they are going to get an infusion from UFJ Mitsubishi.

    What a world. What a ride.

    Shalom. L’chaim. Au revoir.

  298. saimneor Says:

    SKC,

    Wasn’t the topic about how chinese people respond to such a result? So if 1.3 billion chinese do not care, you find your answer right there.

    On the other hand, there are 5+ billion people living outside of Europe or North America. If these people don’t give a damn, would it be appropriate to not call it a prize to recognize “world” peace, maybe “west world” peace is more appropriate.

    Oh wait, let’s see; I am not sure how Russian considers NP for Politics, oops, Peace, or some of the eastern European countries. Anyway, if it is a true respectable prize for world peace, wouldn’t the Islam world, the chinese, and all of those anti-west countries have a say? after all, they are the majority in world population.

    It may be too much for you to realize the people US calls terrorists or axis of evil may also have an opinion on world peace issues; they are human after all.

  299. Jerry Says:

    @S.K. Cheung

    Correction in #297. As of 2pm JST, the Nikkei was down 9.02%, losing -826.41. Earlier this morning it was down 1,000, a 10+% drop.

  300. Wukailong Says:

    @saimneor: “Anyway, if it is a true respectable prize for world peace, wouldn’t the Islam world, the chinese, and all of those anti-west countries have a say? after all, they are the majority in world population.”

    If the prize was awarded by some international commission where every country was present, this would be a valid question. Now it isn’t – it’s awarded by a small Norwegian committee whose discussions are not open to the public. No Norwegian, Swede, Chinese, American or anyone else except that group has any say in this.

    Also, the prize is not for pleasing governments.

  301. S.K. Cheung Says:

    To Saimneor:
    notice that my supposition was “even if”; yours are just “ifs”. And there’s a difference.

    BTW, it’s the Nobel Peace Prize, not the world peace prize. And it’s their prize to award; so if people don’t like it, they should stop whining, pony up, and make their own. What’s stopping you?

    And finally, it’s unusual for people who “don’t give a damn” about something to continue to talk about it incessantly. And look, I just took us to 3 bills; care to make it 301 comments about something you obviously care so little about?

  302. S.K. Cheung Says:

    To Wukailong:
    rats, you beat me to it. So Saimneor, care to make it 303?

  303. Jerry Says:

    @saimneor

    Some questions.

    Do people limit their discussions at FM on responding to the OP? I think not.

    Are you sure that all 1.3 billion Chinese don’t care? Hmmm…

    On the other hand, there are 5+ billion people living outside of Europe or North America. If these people don’t give a damn, would it be appropriate to not call it a prize to recognize “world” peace, maybe “west world” peace is more appropriate.

    Are you sure that all 5+ billion feel and believe like you do? Hmmm…

    Where can we find a list of the various Nobel jurors? How do we know where each juror was born and where they live now?

    Does the Nobel Foundation claim that the NP is a world prize?

    Just curious?

  304. saimneor Says:

    SKC,

    If you are so concern about the number of messages, you should stop posting. Without your 40+ messages, we are still below the 260 mark.

  305. S.K. Cheung Says:

    To Jerry:
    well, at this point, watching the market is like watching a car accident. Kind of gruesome. Kind of painful. But darnit you still gotta look.

    I’ve said many times before, I’m no economist. And thankfully, I’m in it for the long haul. But I never understood people hanging on every blip of the ebb and flow of wall street, or any market index. If it goes up, great, but it’s probably gonna come down some at some point; if it goes down, shucks, but wait long enough and it’ll probably bounce back. And over the long haul, you’ll probably be ahead. Selling now just means you’ve locked in your losses. If I had more spare change, I’d be buying right now.

  306. Jerry Says:

    @S.K. Cheung #301
    @Wukailong #300

    It looks like a pig pile, N’est-ce pas?

  307. S.K. Cheung Says:

    To Saimneor:
    thanks for the advice. I think I’ll file it in the usual spot…

  308. Jerry Says:

    @saimneor #304

    Touchy, touchy, saimneor!! I think SK is just making an observation and a point here, not a critique.

  309. S.K. Cheung Says:

    To Jerry #303:
    LOL. Saimneor is not just speaking for all Chinese; he’s now speaking for all non-European non-North American humans! Very impressive, this guy.

  310. saimneor Says:

    Jerry,

    “Do people limit their discussions at FM on responding to the OP? I think not.”
    If I am writing a message to respond the to the OP and SKC find it strange, can I at least tell him the purpose of my writing? You think I should not?

    Are you sure that all 1.3 billion Chinese don’t care? Hmmm…
    I never said they do or they do not. It was a hypothetical scenario SKC brought up for discussion. Is it really hard to understand?

    Are you sure that all 5+ billion feel and believe like you do? Hmmm…
    Are you sure their opinions were asked? Is there a representative in that committe represent these people? Again, I did not say these people will or will not support NP. You can see the word “if”. It is for discussion.

    Does the Nobel Foundation claim that the NP is a world prize?
    They better not. And I think their faithful followers should know that too.

  311. saimneor Says:

    SKC #309

    You are right, I am pointing out the possible limitations of this prize, in a message thread discussing this issue. My personal opinions only, don’t be too excited.

    care to make it 301 comments about something you obviously care so little about?

    It is also frustrating for me to realize some people here do not understand even if the discussion is related to a prize I do not care about. I care about the discussion topic. You would think expressing ideas is not such a dangerous thing nowadays; am I correct?

  312. Jerry Says:

    @S.K. Cheung #305

    Oops, here I go, increasing the count with an off-topic response.

    SK, I have to watch too. It’s fascinating.

    I use Bloomberg (What can I say, he is part of the tribe?). http://www.bloomberg.com/markets/stocks/wei_region3.html

    I am a long hauler, too. I am no economist, either. Just watching.

  313. Jerry Says:

    @saimneor #311

    I sensed that the conditional subjunctive speculation in #298 was more a statement than a conditional. If I did so in error, then I am sorry. Thanks for the clarifications.

  314. saimneor Says:

    Jerry#313,

    To clarify, the if statement in #298 is meant to discuss this issue under the context created by SKC in #296.

    SKC said: even if all 1.3 billion CHinese don’t give a hoot, the Nobels will still be the most famous prizes in the world.

    So, SKC said if the chinese don’t care, NP is still famous. I was saying if chinese don’t care, we know the answer to OP’s question. You can read it different ways. I am not presenting a fact of any kind

  315. Jerry Says:

    @S.K. Cheung #309

    What a flurry. LOL back at you.

    I saw the “if” and even your “even if”. It is just the way saimneor couched his conditional “if”. It didn’t look like a conditional to me, and it did not pass the “duck” test. Hence I treated them as statements.

    Hell, I can’t even speak for my Jewish friends, let alone over half the world. 😀 Or my daughter, for that matter. LOL

    I gotta stop.

  316. S.K. Cheung Says:

    To Saimneor:
    far be it for me to tell you what to do. If I don’t care about something, I’m not gonna be talking about it…it’s part of me not caring. But you do what you gotta do, and I will too.

  317. Bob Says:

    @sophie #7 — “Here is a link showing:
    http://www.anti-cnn.com/forum/cn/thread-39512-1-4.html

    1. a letter that Hu Jia wrote to the German Chancellor Merkel. In the letter he seems representing ‘hundreds of millions of Chinese Buddhists wish Dalai Lama back to China… ‘”

    Whoa, can’t believe I missed it.

    I have thus far refrained from calling him a traitor, but this letter takes the cake.

    My verdict: guilty as charged.

  318. saimneor Says:

    People, I do not mind we all have different opinions. But at least we should all be logical.

    If “IF” is not starting a conditional clause, replace it with any word you think more appropriate; and the result is what I want to say. No one is trying to mislead you. It was simply a reply of what S.K. Cheung said two posts above that one.

    And, again, S.K.Cheung was trying to tell me I should not post any more on this thread because I do not care enough about the NP Peace. You are right. But I do care about talking about it. I do care about this thread.

    Can I care about the effect of something (that I personally do not care about) on other people?

  319. saimneor Says:

    SKC #316,

    Can I care about the effect of something (that I personally do not care about) on other people? Can I at least point out the limitations of that something and tell you the reason I do not care about it?

    Using your own logic, if you do not care that I write about something I do not care, why do you post multiple times requesting me to stop? You should not write about something you do not care, remember?

  320. Wukailong Says:

    Guys, I think the discussion about the “if” can be finished now… 🙂

    @Bob: Perhaps he is guilty as charged, though I’m not sure under which law, and I’ve been trying in vain to find the verdict. I guess it’s a state secret?

    I didn’t know that China had hundreds of millions of practicing Buddhists, btw, but perhaps Hu Jia was sentenced for spreading faulty information about religion?

  321. Bob Says:

    Hey Swedish national, if I can find it online, I am sure you can too.

  322. Wukailong Says:

    @Bob: I’ve found the China Daily report, but not the full verdict. Here’s the article for those interested:

    “Hu Jia was sentenced here Thursday by the Beijing First Intermediate People’s Court to three and half years imprisonment, with one year deprivation of political rights, for subverting the state.

    The verdict said Hu, an unemployed father aged 34 and the holder of a college degree, libeled the Chinese political and social systems, and instigated subversion of the state, which is a crime under Chinese law.

    Considering Hu’s confession of crime and acceptance of punishment, the court said it had decided the ruling with leniency and announced a less harsh prison sentence.

    The court heard that from August 2006 to October 2007, Hu published articles on overseas-run websites, made comments in interviews with foreign media, and repeatedly instigated other people to subvert the state’s political power and socialist system.

    In his two website articles, ‘China Political Law-enforcement Organs Create Large-scale Horror ahead of CPC National Congress’, and ‘One Country Doesn’t Need Two Systems’, Hu spread malicious rumors, and committed libel in an attempt to subvert the state’s political power and socialist system, the court said in the verdict.

    The articles written by Hu and his interviews were widely relayed by overseas-run websites, the court said.

    The court said the verdict was based on Article 105, 56 and 55 of the Criminal Law of the People’s Republic of China.

    Both his lawyer and Hu himself defended the accused. Hu’s family, among others, heard the court debate and attended the court while Hu’s sentence was pronounced.”

    http://chinadaily.com.cn/china/2008-04/03/content_6590051.htm

  323. The Trapped! Says:

    Nobel Prizes for Literature and Peace are known for disagreement due to their nature of complication and confusion as, unlike other prizes, these are perceived differently due to the piercers’ cultural or political background.

    However, the Literature part is over with prize going to France.

    “French President Nicolas Sarkozy congratulated the writer, saying that Le Clezio, embodies the grandeur of France, its culture, and its values in a globalized world.”

    Hope the Peace Prize can go to someone who has no problem with any side, which is always the problem, so that s/he can also receive a warm congratulation without assaulting and demonizing attack from individuals and institutions!

  324. Bob Says:

    This just in — Martti Ahtisaari of Finland is the deserving one:

    “for his important efforts, on several continents and over more than three decades, to resolve international conflicts”

    Thank God the humanity is saved.

    Peace.

  325. Wukailong Says:

    @Bob: You beat me! 🙂 I was just trying to find out who got the price, but the net is awfully slow right now…

  326. Wukailong Says:

    Now when it’s over for this year, it’s interesting to note how discussions in this thread seem to have been carried out under the assumption that Hu Jia had basically already gotten the prize. Certainly the discussion was whether he deserved it or not, but it quickly turned into the intentions of the Nobel committee and what its backers (ideological and political) are.

    I’m not going to point at anybody, just point out that I tend to do the same thing on a personal level – assume a person will react a certain way, and then find the underlying motives for doing so, without first waiting for the person’s decision.

  327. raffiaflower Says:

    “Shouldn’t past objectionable behavior be a cautionary tale from which we can learn. The failure to learn from history has caused much suffering by many people.” – Jerry says.

    It certainly should be. In this area, the Chinese govt has shown it has learnt well, abandoning political dogma for economic pragmatism to improve lives. It continues to move up the learning curve by making incremental changes, but they are made to suit local conditions, as has been said ad nauseam.
    Shouldn’t the past objectionable behaviour of the West – bullying, lecturing and hectoring China – be a lesson for it to learn from, instead of behaving in the same manner even today? The anti-Chinese riots through the torch relay were a good example that West has not learnt from its own behaviour.
    Pontification is a two-way thing. On the Chinese side, it seems there are as many holier-than-thou Westerners lecturing China a thing or two on how to behave,
    Endless comparisons made: since human rights are universal, comparisons are bound to be made. If Western leaders and media are so vocal on alleged Chinese violations in Tibet, why have they kept sotto voce in occupied territories where it is much worse.
    I have asked SKC before: what about Britain rounding up innocent children abandoned in state orphanages and shipping them off to Australia, a gross abuse of human rights that went on right till the mid-1960s, in the name of “social stability’’ and “for their own good”?
    China remains at a state of social development that is behind that of advanced democracies, and does things for the same reason.
    Whatever the time frame, many of these things are objectionable. But there are people in China – and foreigners such as John Kamm, and many others who work to help animals, orphans, etc – who work within, and with, the system to make the little changes.
    Hu Jia chose to engage with forces outside the system. Legally, that’s not on.
    That has also been a betrayal of social values such as self-reliance, and has drawn emotive responses.
    Wulaikong, yes, I would say there are hundreds of millions of practising Buddhists in China. The latest issue of Businessweek claims there are 130 ml Christians. ( I must learn to trust thoroughly fact-checked impartial Western media that represent the fourth estate) and possibly – just possibly – Buddhism may have a few more adherents.
    The last time I went, Jing An temple in Shanghai was on a drive for funds to build a golden Buddha, and donations were doing quite well.

  328. Wukailong Says:

    In the end, it seems the Nobel Committee did bring some peace by not choosing Hu Jia for the prize. The discussion here died out instantly. 😉

  329. Allen Says:

    Here is an interesting excerpt about the Nobel Prize from Time magazine,

    The literature and peace prizes regularly inspire controversy. Jean Paul Sartre rejected his 1964 prize in literature, though his family tried to reclaim the award money after his death. Pablo Neruda wanted a Nobel Prize so much that he reportedly wined and dined Swedish writers and academics at his seaside villa; he finally won one in 1971. Bob Dylan has been nominated six times, Jerry Lewis once. In 2004, the literature prize went to Austrian feminist Elfriede Jelinek, a move so controversial that one assembly member resigned in protest. Henry Kissinger and Le Duc Tho shared a 1973 Peace Prize for negotiating the end of the Vietnam War. Tho rejected his award, saying that there was no peace in his country. Kissinger’s acceptance caused uproar; apparently the former National Security Advisor’s role in a secret war against Cambodia and the overthrow of the Chilean government didn’t sit well with some people.

    Some Nobel Prizes have gone to discoveries that turned out to be wrong. The 1926 Nobel Prize in medicine went to Johannes Fibiger, for discovering that roundworms caused cancer (they don’t). A year later, psychiatrist Julius Wagner-Jauregg won for injecting patients with malaria to treat syphilitic dementia (not a good idea). Past laureates have espoused eugenics, opposed public schooling, joined the Nazi party, and claimed that September 11 attacks were an inside job. But the majority of prizes have gone to sound discoveries (x-rays, quantum physics, penicillin) and respected leaders (Martin Luther King, Albert Einstein, Nelson Mandela). This year’s winners will come away with a medal, 10 million kroner (about $1.4 million), and the satisfaction of being inducted into one of the most exclusive clubs in history.

  330. S.K. Cheung Says:

    To Saimneor #319:
    my logic is that if you don’t care about something, stop whining about it.
    This is what I wrote in #316: “But you do what you gotta do” – not sure how you took that as me requesting anything of you.

    But just to be clear: I couldn’t care less what you do, or don’t do. Hope that’s clear enough for you.

  331. Jerry Says:

    @S.K. Cheung #330
    @ saimneor #319

    SK,

    LMAO. I just did not have the heart to respond last night to saimneor (#319), “And, again, S.K.Cheung was trying to tell me I should not post any more on this thread because I do not care enough about the NP Peace.” The convolution and distortion was just too much. 😀

    I trust that your clarifications will do the trick.

    —————-

    saimneor , even if (please note that I am saying “even if”) SK told you what you allege he told you (#319), you are under no obligation to follow such instructions. SK never told you that you could not post anymore. SK has no power to force you to stop posting. SK does not have the right to tell you that you can not post anymore. Furthermore, I doubt that SK would ever say that to you. Thanks.

    Now we are at 331 posts. This comment does not imply that I am disturbed by the number of posts. Just making a notation.

  332. Allen Says:

    @saimneor,

    I’d follow Jerry’s advice. When I tell people to shut up here, no one ever listens. So if no one listens to me, I sure hope you don’t listen to someone else – least of all SKC 😉 , who is quite a softie actually once you get to know him! 🙂

  333. Nobody Says:

    Time Magazine: But the majority of prizes have gone to sound discoveries (x-rays, quantum physics, penicillin) and respected leaders (Martin Luther King, Albert Einstein, Nelson Mandela). BUT some MANY years Later…..sometimes too late…..

    9/11 Truth Norway: 9/11 Truth nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize 2008

    9/11 Truth nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize 2008
    4 October 2008

    Reason for the nomination of
    David Ray Griffin and the 9/11 Truth Movement to the Nobel Peace Prize 2008

    Supported by 10 professors, or current or former MPs

    The wars of the 21st century – what the U.S. President has called ‘The global war on terror’ – are justified with a tragic event: the attacks against New York and Washington 11 September 2001. This event would come to justify pre-emptive war on enemies who seemed to be everywhere and nowhere. From 2001 terrorism was presented as the biggest threat to Western society, and the foremost evidence of this threat, we were told, were the events of 11 September.

    In recent years, however, the 9/11 Truth Movement and their outstanding academic David Ray Griffin presented strong evidence that the attacks of 11 September were not carried out by Islamist terrorists, as we have been told, but by a U.S. ‘war lite’ as an excuse to go to war against Afghanistan and Iraq (wars that were already approved). David Ray Griffin and the 9/11 Truth Movement have presented convincing evidence showing that this ‘war elite’ carried out these attacks to establish a new enemy after the Cold War, and to start wars in line with their economic and political interests. We believe the most important contribution to peace in the 21st century is the disclosure of these elite political games and the removal of the false reasons for its aggressive wars. This Griffin and the 9/11 Truth Movement have done in an excellent way. If the attack on 11 September was a U.S. ‘false flag operation’ to justify wars in the Middle East, the disclosure of that fact should be honored with the Nobel Peace Prize. We therefore nominate this David Ray Griffin and the 9/11 Truth Movement to share the Nobel Peace Prize for 2008.

    In that era the U.S. administration called ‘The global war on terror’ David Ray Griffin and the 9/11 Truth Movement have provided the most significant contribution to peace, and for this they should be given the Nobel Peace Prize for 2008.

  334. S.K. Cheung Says:

    To Jerry #331:
    ahhh, someone else who appreciates the difference between “if” and “even if”. Nice to know they’re still out there 🙂

    To Jerry and Allen:
    you’re both making me sound very powerless. And here I was plotting all this time for world domination… back to the drawing board go I.

  335. S.K. Cheung Says:

    To Nobody:
    “BUT some MANY years Later” – I agree. Just looking at this year’s various awards, seems that the winners won for things they did decades ago, but whose discoveries have proved their significance with the test of time. So really, Hu Jia doesn’t even meet that criteria. If his activism bears fruit in 20 years, then he might be in the running.

  336. Nobody Says:

    SKC,

    Agreed. Time will tell….

    Over 50 senior military, intelligence, and government officials are now on record questioning
    9/11. Read media statements from members of congress, a former director of the FBI, a former chief economist of President George W. Bush, an assistant secretary of the Treasury under President Reagan, the former head of advanced space programs for the Department of Defense under Reagan, a British cabinet minister under Prime Minister Tony Blair, and more. In reports on respected websites (links provided), each of these prominent leaders now claims that there are serious problems with the official government story of 9/11. Over 100 respected and distinguished professors claiming a 9/11 cover-up…

    Senior Military, Intelligence, and Government Officials Question 9/11 Commission Report

    http://www.WantToKnow.info/officialsquestion911commissionreport

  337. Hongkonger Says:

    And here I was plotting all this time for world domination…

    SKC,

    So, you wanna be the King of the World, huh? I think, before you get there, you have to either find Kate Winslet and bed her, or take the road impossible to become a King-maker, like 3rd century 王導 for example. He was advisor to Three Emperors. Or be a SOB like 秦桧, the two-headed snake, traitor of the Han race, who masterminded the political execution of the inconquerable General Yue Fei 岳飛. Or be as smart as 诸葛亮. However, even they failed in dominating the world. Where military might failed, the power of mammon is a lot more promising, SKC. As seen in more recent history, around the 17th century’s end, there appeared a master of usury, a pawn shop owner turned King-Maker. It was non other than Mayer Amschel Bauer, the “founding father of international finance”. Mayer later changed his family name to Rothschild, the german name for red shield, the name of Mayer Amschel Rothschild’s father, Moses Bauer’s pawnshop.
    Mayer loaned money at interest to Wilhelm IX, Landgrave of Hesse-Kassel. And during and after the invasion and conquest by Napoleon, Wilhelm went into exile for several years, during which time, Mayer managed the King’s fortune. With wealth Mayer was able to have the power of first hand information. He made enormous fortunes from the Napoleonic war in the stock market. Later, the Rothschild family banking empire financed the World wars.
    SKC, I gather you are in finances. How friendly are you with George Soros? Have you ever been to a Rothschild or Rockefellas’ party? Do you even have the one time entry pass to Zion, that mountain city? If you don’t, may I sugguest you join me and the rest of the world, if you can, to eat, drink and be merry, for the world, as we know it, may not see the 22nd century. Happy dreams.

  338. Jerry Says:

    @Allen #332
    @S.K. Cheung #334
    @Nobody #336

    #332

    Allen, I just hope that you don’t throw an injunction at us some time. 😀

    —————-

    #334

    Sorry, SK. I just hate stomping on your “world domination” dreams. How can you ever forgive me? 😉

    —————-

    #336

    Nobody, I agree that 9/11 deserves much more thorough investigation. Apparently, some people with whom I am familiar agree: Max Cleland, Louis Freeh, Ray McGovern, Scott Ritter, Richard Clarke. The 9/11 Commission was a farce.

  339. S.K. Cheung Says:

    To HKer,
    nice Titanic reference (I mean the movie of course). Well, I know i won’t be seeing the 22nd century. And my kids will be in guinness book themselves if they do. But hopefully it’ll be there for the grandkids. But yes, for now, eating, drinking (preferably Guinness), being merry, all very good ideas.

  340. S.K. Cheung Says:

    To Jerry:
    forget world domination, I’ll settle for my kids obeying all my commands at this point.

  341. Jerry Says:

    @S.K. Cheung #340

    “forget world domination, I’ll settle for my kids obeying all my commands at this point.”

    I used to wish the same for me. SK, as the father of a 29 year old son and a 26 year old daughter, I wish you luck. Mazel tov. 😀

    Please let me know where I went wrong with my kids. LOL

  342. S.K. Cheung Says:

    To Jerry:
    hey, 2 adult kids, alive, limbs intact, gainfully employed, not on crack, university educated…I’d say you’ve done alright. You should be writing a how-to book. I know I’d buy it. 🙂

  343. Jerry Says:

    @S.K. Cheung #342

    LMAO

    “You should be writing a how-to book. I know I’d buy it.” SK, I’ll let you know when I publish it. Don’t hold your breath. 😀

    To give you an idea why I probably won’t write it, let me tell you a short story. Nearly 2 years ago on her 25th birthday, I called my daughter. During the conversation, all of a sudden, she stopped and asked, “Dad, how did you ever put up with me when I was 17 years old?” To which I drolly answered, “Let’s not go there.” We both laughed. 😀

    BTW, self-help books usually benefit the writer far more than the reader. At least financially. 😀

  344. saimneor Says:

    @SKC #330

    Here let me try this one last time. Let us define a statement S = saimneor should not comment on things he does not care. It is safe to say you do not care about S. Then why are you keep writing about it? As you said, you should “stop whining about it”.

    Or, your rules do not apply to yourself?

    ——————————————————————–
    Hey everyone else, thanks for the messages. I am not angry but I was frustrated by the lack of logic in a few posts. It does not affect anything else, just helps to increase the message count.

  345. Oli Says:

    Wow, so many smilies and 344 posts (what is the max record of posts ever anyway and is admin keeping one anyway?). Well, here’s adding mine to the count. 🙂

    Also thought I might just chime in to say that I have nothing to say. Nope, nothing. Absolutely nothing. Nada. Rien. Ganz und gar ueberhaupt nichts, 没话好说. Is that saying something???

  346. S.K. Cheung Says:

    To anyone other than Saimneor: (like Jerry or Allen, for instance).
    Clearly, my #330 was not clear enough. Sad really. Alas, if at first you don’t succeed…

    First of all, as defined, I absolutely care about S. If Saimneor only had the common decency to practice S, my time currently would be better spent. On the other hand, I absolutely could not give 2 figs about the owner of S. And whether said owner chooses to practice his own statements, is also something of little interest to me. Now, since I apply my rules without bias, admittedly the last statement is in contravention thereof. However, as a polite individual, I feel EVEN HIS questions deserve an answer.

    Hopefully, he has the decency to not direct future posts at me, or end with questions, so that I may practice S v2.0 (where S v2.0 = SKC will ignore future frivolous and illogical statements from Saimneor).

  347. S.K. Cheung Says:

    To Jerry #343:
    I’ve heard that the true measure of a parent is what their child thinks of them when the “child” is 30, not 13. So you should be getting a couple of report cards in the next little while. Me, I’m closer to the first checkpoint. Yippee for me. If someone discovers a way to accelerate the frontal lobe maturation of teenagers, I want it.

  348. saimneor Says:

    Ok, this one is not “directly” sent to any one.

    In #330, the author wrote “But just to be clear: I couldn’t care less what you do, or don’t do. Hope that’s clear enough for you.”. I found a little contradiction with #346.

    Is it clear enough for you?

  349. S.K. Cheung Says:

    Sad…pathetic really…to each his own. Just an observation about the trials and tribulations of life…directed at no one in particular.

  350. Jerry Says:

    @S.K. Cheung #346, 347

    #346

    LMAO³, if that is possible. Ordinarily, SK, I would say, “What is the use.” I just can’t stop laughing. Don’t stop, I am having too much fun. 😀

    You have a great career ahead of you as a satirist or a stand-up comedian. And, George Carlin is dead. Big shoes to fill, but I have faith in you. You might want to get in touch with Tina Fey, too. 😀

    At least you take this with great humor. Very admirable. Yes, I thought it clear, too. But then again, there are those… 😀

    Priceless, priceless and much better than a Mastercard ad. LOL

    —————-

    #347

    My son, who turns 30 in December, has given me good grades. My daughter, who turns 27 on November 1 (hence I call her Boo [born day after Halloween] and since graduating from med school, Dr. Boo) has given me good grades too. Perhaps she has been influenced by the new Honda CRX I bought for her after graduation. And she wants to visit me in Taipei in January. And guess who she will probably want to buy her plane ticket. And, oh yeah, she also wants to go to HK. 😀

    Regarding correcting frontal lobe deficiencies/immaturities in teenagers, that would be worth a Nobel Prize in Medicine. And there are always frontal lobotomies, I dare suggest. 😀

    BTW, do you have a daughter? If so, my sympathy to you.

  351. Jerry Says:

    #350

    Correction: Honda CR-V

  352. S.K. Cheung Says:

    To Jerry:
    if you’re able to laugh in the third power, you’re clearly in a good mindspace. Something else you’ll have to teach me.
    So not only are your kids all-that of #342, but they also turn in assignments early? Jeez…I’m envious bordering on jealous, but not in the Othello sense.
    Good thing you corrected yourself though…I would’ve thought graduating from medical school would be deserving of more than a 20 year old car…not that there’s anything wrong with that 🙂

    Considering she’s got the student loans, and you have the bejeweled NDA, I’d say you should spring for the tix. But I didn’t think doctors get time off.

    As for the “btw”, I’ve got 2. So I’ll be needing your good wishes in the second power, please. Who knows, maybe even in the third…

  353. Jerry Says:

    @S.K. Cheung #352

    At least if you are not Othellic, I need not ask who plays Iago in your life. (Please note that I said “at least if”. LOL) BTW, since I mentioned Paul Robeson, he with that mellifluous bass voice, earlier in this thread (a lot earlier), he played Othello on Broadway in 1943. The marvelous Jose Ferrer played Iago.

    “I would’ve thought graduating from medical school would be deserving of more than a 20 year old car…not that there’s anything wrong with that”. My wonderful daughter felt the same way as you in the former. But regarding the latter, she would take issue. She would see plenty wrong. Her boyfriend, a future orthopedic surgeon (my daughter is an orthopedic surgery resident) would see nothing wrong, either. Boy is he in for a surprise! 😀

    Yes, daddy will spring for the tix.

    About your dear daughters, and a possible third, I never regret having a daughter. She has told me I probably would have wanted two boys, but I have told her I would never think that way. Dads and daughters have a special bond. Yes, she has been more expensive than my son, but as she always tells me, “Dad, I am worth it!” 😀 She is priceless. Not going to trade her.

    Mazel tov. L’chaim. Bonne chance, mon ami.

  354. Hongkonger Says:

    To HKer,
    nice Titanic reference (I mean the movie of course). Well, I know i won’t be seeing the 22nd century. And my kids will be in guinness book themselves if they do….eating, drinking (preferably Guinness), being merry, all very good ideas.

    SKC,

    Have you seen Winslet in the movie”Smoke?”

    Tsk, tsk, tsk, see what I mean by having no expectation? It’s not your fault, we’ve all together been fooooled.
    I know, it is probably not possible to live forever, but 150? Man, that’s how long we are all supposed to live. Which means, to live to see AD 2100 is entirely possible, if all the money and energy wasted on wars and WMD are poured into finding ways to cure all diseases and to slow down the aging process.

    SKC, I dunno if I am pulling your leg or if some Englishman was yanking my Foomanchu-piggytail, but I was told that Imported GUINNESS draft in HK actually taste better than they do in Dublin…???? Is that possible????

  355. FOARP Says:

    @HKer – I’ve been to the Guinness brewery in Dublin, and I’ve drunk the stuff they sell on the mainland and HK. Dublin was like pouring a delicious ice-cold silk down your throat, the stuff in China tasted like mud mixed with water. Dude, there’s no comparison!

  356. S.K. Cheung Says:

    To HKer and FOARP:
    I wouldn’t know. All I can say is the Guinness in Canada is yummy. But I mean the draught; I’m not so much into the stout, personally.

  357. Hongkonger Says:

    Totally agree with FOARP – “the stuff in China tasted like mud mixed with water.” Talk about Money for nothin’ & chicks for free…

    I can understand the “piss” they sell in China at (US$0.50 / 4.00RMB) for a 750ml of Qing Dao brewed and bottled in Guangdong couldn’t possibly compare with genuine german style brewsky from the Green Island(Qing Dao) for exports at US$2.00 / HK$15. The first time I bought a 350ml can of Guiness in Shenzhen, I had to chuck it after the second sip just to be sure it wasn’t some fake shit. The unfortunate thing is that it was the real thing – but watered down for the huge market! FOARP, I suspect what you might have tasted in HK was a china produced can-Guiness, right? These are my favourite brews, Stella Artois, Kilkenny and Guiness on tap, but they are between US$4.5 and $6.00 / HK$30-40 (Happy Hour or 2for 1 prices) a pint of smooth happy frothy. Otherwise they are around HK$60- HK$80 a pint, dudes. Yikes!

  358. S.K. Cheung Says:

    To Hker:
    yes, definitely, Guinness on tap is best. So, you’ve got good taste in brew, good taste in music…you’re one fine gentleman, sir!

  359. Hongkonger Says:

    Jerry, SKC, #347

    “Regarding correcting frontal lobe deficiencies/immaturities in teenagers, that would be worth a Nobel Prize in Medicine. And there are always frontal lobotomies, I dare suggest..”

    There’s a chinese saying, “穷人的孩子早当家.” It means – something like – “Precocious children are found in every poor and destitude family.” Generally speaking, I think the majority reason for teen-age crisis – in affluent society – is because of letting this age group of society having it too easy, or modern society imposing on (most of) them the wrong vocation.

    Reading the stories of highly successful individuals, most of them started out their real world adult repsonsibility while they were teenagers. Many also went back to school after they had their own families, and after theyhave become wealthy.

  360. raffiaflower Says:

    Poor saimneor. You caved in their posturing. :-0
    It’s very hard for these westerners, or acculturated ones, to grasp views other than their own. Sometimes, deliberately so. 🙁
    They cannot understand that matters such as human rights are part of the maturation process of a society, so there will be differences of view. Universal values, varying cultural perspective.
    Or that issues such as taiwan, tibet, etc, are framed within a sense of identity; personal or national, the matter of self is emotive. People within a group can very extremely self-critical about themselves, even open to criticism, but not when that criticism presents itself as arbitration of right and wrong.
    You should be more indulgent of them, saimneor. 🙂
    Besides (shhh…h) I don’t think dear SK is Chinese. He’s…Manchurian.
    Or maybe a Manchurian candidate. 🙂
    You did not c how he tore BXBQ apart with Dragon Lady nail shields on another thread! Something like empress dowager. Maybe the same DNA. 🙂
    It’s Jerry you have to watch out for! The dear man is …right-wing! My American fren told me that the right-wing behaves this way: first, they will coddle, sweet-talk, to make you come round to their thinking.
    If you won’t budge, then they get a bit snarky, sniffy, and biting at your opinions. (Jerry dear was playful with semantics.)
    Finally, they will just ignore you completely! Say it ain’t so, Jerry! Actually, I like Jerry, he’s a dear, Saimneor.
    Even though he bats on the same team as Bernard Arnault and those ppl who want to conquer the world. ONE HANDBAG AT A TIME!
    Resistance is futile. I already own four Louis Vuitton pieces. Sigh. But then, I just read Day of Empire. Amy Chua writes about Tang empire: a love of foreign things did not necessarily mean a love of foreigners. There’s hope! Chin up, Saimneor!

    BTW: Too late to edit this, SK & Jerry, so I apologise for calling you dear. NYT recently ran a piece which opines the prefix is bad for the health, especially on seniors.
    The article came out after I called Cathy Horyn “dear’’ on her blog. Maybe she was upset…
    But really, I like you, guys. 🙂
    Have to run and take my vertigo pills. Recovering from the southward plunge of the China mutuals.

  361. S.K. Cheung Says:

    To Raffia:
    well, it’s awfully nice of you to come to Saimneor’s defense, though I’m not sure he needs it, nor sought it. Yet all the same, here you are.
    I have my views. One set is all I need. Happy to entertain others, but I’m not about to adopt them, just because somebody says I should. So if somebody has another perspective, but it doesn’t make sense to me, then it’s going to get the level of consideration from me that I think it deserves. So I agree, if I choose to ignore something, it’s probably deliberate.
    Yes, some societies are more mature than others. So while we wait for CHina’s to grow up, perhaps some suggestions are in order. And if there are cultural barriers that prevent a uniform interpretation of human values, I’d be open to learning more about them. In the end, I may still disagree, which is my right. And Chinese may not care much about such disagreement, which is theirs. But at least in the course of that process, hopefully the level of mutual understanding has at least increased.
    It amuses me when Chinese complain that the “west” tries to be an arbiter of right and wrong. Perhaps the “west” may disagree with some things China. They may even say “we think you’re wrong”; but for Chinese to affiliate an arbiter status to such a statement is almost a tacit acknowledgment of some inferiority, the cause of which is baffling to me. For if CHina issued such a statement to “the west”, the response she’d receive would probably be along the lines of “go fly a kite”.

    I think it was Buxi who wrote many moons ago that, if someone is going to present a point of view in these parts, it had better make sense, or they should expect to be challenged. And to me, that edict works both ways. So if BXBQ takes a stroll through the furthest recesses of left field, he should expect to be lit up like a Christmas tree; and if I or anyone else ever venture into similar locales, we should expect no better, or worse. Oh, and the nails are stick on…only to be applied when the need arises. Otherwise, as Allen says, I’m a softie. But if you’d like to see those nails up close, write something goofy, and I’d be happy to oblige.

    Now, you’ve gone to the trouble of writing a bunch of stuff, but what have you really said (the answer, btw, is sweet jack all). What do you stand for? Which wing are you on? And what kind of a guy owns handbags?

  362. HKger Says:

    SKC,

    And what kind of a guy owns handbags?

    Raffiaflower? Isn’t that the flower of some kind of fruit-bearing palm tree? Or is it a flower made of raffia fibers? Anyway, are you sure raffiaflower is of the male gender? He/she “talks” like a gal, if ya asked me. Either that or he’s gay. Now, before anyone releases from your expanded lungs the indignant gulp of breathe you’d drawn to spit vitriolic hot-air at me, let me say this. I adore women and I love gay people.
    As for SKC questions, I’m afraid, other than Italian men, Chinese businessmen too, carry manbags. Has anyone seen the movie, YPF? It is hilarious!

  363. Jerry Says:

    @Hongkonger #359
    @raffiaflower, #360
    @S.K. Cheung, #360, 361

    #359

    HKer, I am in Hanoi and out of touch for a bit. I jest, sir. I love my kids. Can they be precocious? You bet. Are they successful? You bet. Do I believe in coddling? No way. Do I believe in discipline? You bet.

    “Reading the stories of highly successful individuals, most of them started out their real world adult repsonsibility while they were teenagers.” I do not find the direct correlation which you do. I know people who come from all walks who are highly successful. People mature at different rates and at different ages. We call them early bloomers and late bloomers. Authors may tend to pick and choose examples which fit the points they want to make.

    “Generally speaking, I think the majority reason for teen-age crisis – in affluent society – is because of letting this age group of society having it too easy, or modern society imposing on (most of) them the wrong vocation.” I think that modern children are at risk for a lot of reasons, including parents who have to work harder to provide for the family, predatory television programs and internet sites, an education system that has been dumbed down and a social safety nets which have been dismembered, to name a few of the risks. Yes, there are parents who coddle their children or impose unreasonable expectations on their children. Society occasionally stigmatizes some career paths and tries to push children into paths which they consider more acceptable.

    —————-

    #360

    Raffiaflower, am I a curmudgeon? At times, yes. Am I cynical and sarcastic? Yes I can be. Am I a right-winger? I doubt it. If that designation makes you happy, go with it. No one characteristic or category can completely describe me, my beliefs and my biases. And I can dish it out and I can take it. C’est la vie. A bi gezunt.

    It’s very hard for these westerners, or acculturated ones, to grasp views other than their own. Sometimes, deliberately so.
    They cannot understand that matters such as human rights are part of the maturation process of a society, so there will be differences of view. Universal values, varying cultural perspective.
    Or that issues such as taiwan, tibet, etc, are framed within a sense of identity; personal or national, the matter of self is emotive. People within a group can very extremely self-critical about themselves, even open to criticism, but not when that criticism presents itself as arbitration of right and wrong.

    We are all entitled to our beliefs and opinions.

    Just because a Westerner doesn’t coddle someone or elaborate all they think about an issue, it does not mean that we don’t see other’s viewpoints. Thank you for enlightening me that there will be differences of view.

    Please go ahead and continue to lecture in your pedagogical style. Your opinion shows a myopia regarding Western thinking and a willingness for unwarranted speculation. But you are entitled to think how you will. Far be it from me to tell you what to think or do. It is not my job to please you and or educate you. I know little about Arnault, but I would not mind some of his money. 😀

    I like you too, raffiaflower. Like SK in #361, I have my beliefs and am happy to entertain others. I will adapt and change as I see fit. But I do appreciate the advice. I just hope that you won’t be offended if I decide not to change.

    Maybe someday I will learn to stop being so “snarky”? I would not hold your breath on that one. It just seems to arise from time to time. Damn! It’s like hell being human.

    Raffiaflower, it is very hard for me to take your post very seriously. Maybe it is just me? Maybe I am just missing something here?

    And if you ran out of time to edit the piece, how did you have time to add those lines after the “BTW”?

    —————-

    #361

    ‘For if CHina issued such a statement to “the west”, the response she’d receive would probably be along the lines of “go fly a kite”.’ I have been known to use a little stronger than that, SK. 😀

    Your comments are well-stated and cogent. Thanks, SK.

  364. Hongkonger Says:

    Jerry,

    Some of the greatest regrets in life were the pains I caused my beloved parents when I was myself a teenager, many many many moons ago. It was like one suffers from a temporary lapsed of reason of 3- 5 years. Often good kids get bad parents, bad parents have good kids, and every now and then, one sees a social anomaly, i.e. a healthy family among the normally cracked, wounded and broken others. It is all the cast of the dice, chance, luck and misfortunes. There are no rhymes or reasons. Kinda like Chomsky’s PhD thesis, which was also the antithesis to Skinner’s Behaviorism. The nature vs nurture argument. (Ok, now, I know I don’t know what I am talking about.)

    #363, Authors may tend to pick and choose examples which fit the points they want to make.

    You are right. Now that you mentioned it, I suddenly remember reading, Rich Daddy poor Daddy. Man, what a generous load of crap were sandwiched between the covers of that book!. I have read maybe 5 self-help books in my life. THing is, none of them actually did me any good, other than made me feel bad about myself for not measuring up with the Joneses, and missing out on all of the finer things in life. I think I got more out of watching Jack Nicholson and Morgon Freeman in, “Kick the Bucket.”

    Incidently, the aforementioned book was the LAST Self-help book I read. And that was the best help it gave me. It helped me decide self-help books are totally useless. It sure help the authors get richer, though.

  365. S.K. Cheung Says:

    To Jerry #363:
    “I have been known to use a little stronger than that, SK.” – yeah, me too. But this is a family establishment. And Admin hasn’t had to edit my saucy language yet…so I thought I’d keep it that way. And the phrase I’d normally use also starts with “go” 🙂

  366. Jerry Says:

    @Hongkonger #364
    @S.K. Cheung, #365

    #364

    So many things just seem to be the luck of the draw. So many things in life for which to be grateful. I think of the old saying (not that I am into the theistic God, but I still like the intent), “There but for the grace of God go I.” It seems that so much is out of our control. And we have this amazing capacity to make the best of our circumstances. My dad will say, “Everything happens for the best.” My Uncle Charles will chime in, “And we make the best out of everything that happens.”

    But then again, there is Einsteinian physics, quantum mechanics. Perhaps this is where paradoxes live side-by-side, contiguously. Imagine congruities and incongruities co-existing. Such unlimited potential, perhaps. But, I digress, perhaps. 😉

    I too gave up on self-help books, a long time ago. Imagine that, I am no longer of financial benefit to the Wayne Dyers, Robert Kiyosakis, Sharon Lechters, and Deepak Chopras of the world. How disloyal and uncaring of me. 😀

    —————-

    #365

    Yes, I too tend to temper myself. The “go …” admonition or rebuke sounds very familiar, very familiar. 😀 LOL

  367. tenzin Says:

    As a Tibetan, I support Hu Jia and believe he truly deserves the Nobel Peace Prize, along with his wife. He epitomizes what the award stands for, in a country of a billion people, he is one of the few individuals who has he courage and determination to speak out for what is right: he is an aids activist, an environmentalist, and an advocate for freedom, not only for the Chinese people, but for the Tibetan people as well. Hu Jia, you are a hero. thank you for all you’ve done -hopefully your activism and courage will be the spark that changes China. *FREE TiBET.

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