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Oct 03

(Letter) Boy People Really Hate He Kexin

Written by guest on Friday, October 3rd, 2008 at 8:01 pm
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I really wonder what did she ever do to all these people, that even after two international body investigations exonorated her of the underage accusation, people are still blogging as if she is guilty:

– This SHOCKING NEWS FLASH! from 10/3 neglected to mention He Kexin was exonorated of the underage charge.

– This blogger still insist He Kexin is 8.

– Finally a “Case Closed” blogpost – except the conclusion is still “there is no way that He Kexin is 16”.

Okay, so these are boobs don’t care about China. What about our esteemed expat China bloggers? Shouldn\’t they have some insight and balanced opinion?

– Will from Imagethief saw it fit to coin the term “baby gate” and update the IOC investigation, but so far has not updated his bloppost with He Kexin’s exonoration.

– Both John Kennedy and Oiwan Lam from Global Voices Online blogged about He Kexin being underage, but neither saw it fit follow up with the fact IOC has again found the allegation not true. Boy Rueters even paid for this. It seems China “voice” is only “global” when it\’s bad news.


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45 Responses to “(Letter) Boy People Really Hate He Kexin”

  1. Will Says:

    Charles asks, shouldn’t we China bloggers have some insight or balanced opinion? Here is what I wrote in the post he cites above (in which I also linked prominently to a Fool’s Mountain post suggesting an alternate interpretation of the He Kexin situation):

    I have no doubt that China’s gymnastics training regimen is brutal, and the cold mechanics of China’s national sporting machine definitely deserve scrutiny. I also think the evidence of an age scandal is pretty compelling. Perhaps Yang is a victim. But she, along with He, is also a talent and should be celebrated as such. The rest of the world, America included, has had its grim training stories, especially in sports like gymnastics and figure skating for which the feedstock is young girls. This article has a whiff of the old cold-war double standard. Ours=plucky, heroic achievers. Theirs=manufactured robots/slaves/dopers.

    Perhaps she’s a victim of the Communist Sports Machine. Perhaps she’s just a teenage girl who is a spectacular gymnast, who’s had a hard year of training, and who is uncomfortable talking to the media. As Nimrod wrote on that Fool’s Mountain post, consider that other possibilities do exist.

    I don’t think my balance is at issue. As for He’s exoneration, good for her. Having seen her win it in person, I’m genuinely glad she gets to keep it. But that’s been well covered elsewhere.

  2. Nobody Says:

    This article has a whiff of the old cold-war double standard. Ours=plucky, heroic achievers. Theirs=manufactured robots/slaves/dopers.Perhaps she’s a victim of the Communist Sports Machine.

    Simple answer: Bias anti-China media propaganda. While we are in the conjecture and accusation game,
    PERHAPS these olympians are all happy to be part of the National Chinese/American Teams. In case some have fallen asleep for the last thirty years, China is NOT a Communist country. This “manufactured robots/slaves/dopers,” concept is total BS; stuff of Sci-Fi thematic twists and staples for Doomsday prophets, Hollywood scriptwriters & writer for futuristic post-nuclear society.
    A case in point. A HK gymnast fell on her head a few days ago, suffering serious neck injury. It was an accident, no one blamed the HK gov’t.

  3. Typoprone Says:

    People are so convinced that He Kexin is underaged that the only ruling they’re willing to accept is one that finds her to indeed be underaged. It’s pathetic. :\

  4. FOARP Says:

    @Charles Liu – What happened to your previous post on exactly this subject? It was only put up a couple of days ago but I can’t find it. Since this post says exactly the same thig as the last one, I’ll repeat my comment:

    1) The Chinese government documents listing He Kexin as 13 in 2007 were genuine, not even the Chinese authorities deny this – they simply say that they were mistaken (as well as the newspaper reports etc.).

    2) The head of the Chinese sports authority himself described He Kexin as 13 years old in a speech at the closing ceremony of the 2007 city games, again, no one denies this.

    3) By a Chinese gymnast’s own admission the ages of gymnasts have been faked.

    Given this, why should anyone who was suspicious about He Kexin’s age have anything to be sorry about?

  5. FOARP Says:

    Also, Charles, are you actually accusing Will from Imagethief, John Kennedy, Oiwan Lam et al of ‘hating’ He Kexin? I suggest you be a bit more careful with your words.

  6. Charles Liu Says:

    Forap, you forget to mention 2) Cui has since made another statement regarding his speech, see 1); 3) Yang Yun has also stated she misspoke during the interview. And when you say “can’t find it”, I found it 4 blogposts down.

    I really wonder why you have habitually ignored this, as I had pointed this out to you earlier. As to what I wrote – I said I don’t know (I wonder) why these people still refused to believe He Kexin is 16, after two investigation by international bodies exonorating her, or find it fit to broadcast the investigation not the result of the investigation.

    So what else are you wrong?

    I hope Will’s daughter or sister will never be convicted on the public opinion of “compelling”, when proof positive by the highest level of governing body says otherwise. Nor will yours ever be indicted because someone else may have done something.

    BTW, Will still have not put “He Kexin exonorated” update on his blogpost, only the investigation. Since the result of the investigation doesn’t reenforece certain POV, it’s not worth follow-up, am I wrong?

  7. S.K. Cheung Says:

    When babies who are incontrovertibly under 16 are getting kidney stones from milk powder contamination, are you still honestly fixated on a gymnast’s age?
    I’d much rather an update on what Sanlu is doing at this point, and what the Chinese government is and isn’t doing.

  8. GNZ Says:

    Charles,
    No one I know who questioned their ages expected the gymnastic federation to uncover anything so for that to have turned out exactly as predicted is not additional evidence beyond what was already in the debate at the beginning. And saying one ‘misspoke’ doesn’t negate the evidentiary value of the fact that one said it in the first place.

    That might sound difficult but imagine if this was on a topic you disagree with, how convinced would you be? If you can’t I can make up a hypothetical.

    I cant say for sure any of the girls are underage but I don’t see why the gymnastic federation or the Chinese gymnastics authorities would be a reliable judge – so I await evidence. On balance that leads me to believe at least some of them were underage.

    Also irritating is the insinuation that people who think like me might hate He KeXin. That seems to be just another in the list of poor or biased judgments by that side of the argument.

  9. FOARP Says:

    @Charles – Suppose the government officials, newspapers etc. are all telling the truth, and all the instances of people reporting He Kexin’s age as 13 last year (with none reporting her ‘real’ age) were in error. Who then should apologise? Certainly not the people who pointed out this ‘error’.

    On the other hand, if I were interviewing these people for a job and they made simple mistakes about their own age both in their resume and in the interview, would I give them the job? Or would I suspect something phony and steer well clear? One thing is certain, there will be much more scrutiny of gymnast’s ages in 2012, it would be unwise to repeat these ‘errors’ in the next Olympics.

    Myself, I think that Nimrod had the right idea with his post – there’s obviously been some kind of jiggery-pokery with the girls age, but for all we know she really could have been 16 this year – nobody can say for sure what has been going on.

  10. FOARP Says:

    @Charles – I did not see your previous post (which was almost exactly the same as this one) because it was not on the ‘recent posts’ sidebar, but scrolling down to it, you didn’t answer my question – why should those who pointed out these ‘errors’ apologise? What do they have to apologise for? Was it them who made all these ‘mistakes’? Apparently Cui, the sport authorities, the newspapers etc. did not know that there was an minimum age for Olympic gymnastics and that by ‘wrongly’ quoting He Kexin’s age as 13 they were risking disqualifying her from the Olympics – but pointing out that they had said these things shows that you ‘hate’ the girl in question. How do you defend this line of reasoning?

    And if you cannot defend this line of reasoning, will you apologise to all the people you have groundlessly accused of acting out of a malicious hatred for a young girl that they have never met?

  11. Charles Liu Says:

    GNZ,

    “I cant say for sure any of the girls are underage” – then it should automatically mean they are not guilty, according to our western notion of fairness. Presumption of innocence is something I’m not willing to ignore, for ourselves or for China. If we act with such duplicity what would the Chinese learn from us?

    “I don’t see why the gymnastic federation or the Chinese gymnastics authorities would be a reliable judge” – Please, FIG is THE final arbitor of this investigation. They have access to old passport, family registry, birth certificate, evidence that are not accessible by general public due to privacy issues. Their conclusion is INFINITELY more reliable than some blog or search engine cache (BTW there’re also Google/Baidu cache proving the gymnasts are of age, but Mike Walker/Stryde Hax refuses to acknowledge them.)

  12. S.K. Cheung Says:

    Ok, Charles, if it will help you to stop flogging a dead horse, I will (tho I can’t speak for others) “presume” her to be 16.
    And let’s hope Chinese authorities get their stories straight for 2012. Otherwise, it would be another example of them not learning from their mistakes.

  13. Charles Liu Says:

    SKC, I think a little latitude is called for, as comment #2 pointed out, while the “communist matchine” flogs on today, China hasn’t been communist for the last 20 years.

  14. S.K. Cheung Says:

    To Charles:
    that’s true. I do wonder, as CHina evolves, if the CCP will reinvent itself, or at the very least assume a name more reflective of its current style, which I agree is as free market as the next guy. Chinese One-Party Free Market Dudes seems a little unwieldy, however.

  15. GNZ Says:

    We know the FIG has the passports – what level of evidence but would they require in order to say “the passports are fake and china is lying to us? That would be a huge and highly inflammatory call for the FIG to make, it would cost the sport a lot and probably the members personally. They just don’t have the intestinal fortitude to do that. Do you think they do?

    There are no consequences on the other hand of just saying ‘there is not enough evidence to say they are underaged – so ‘not guilty’. That would be completely different if the offending country was ‘Sudan’ or some random small country.

    This is analogous to saying that we should trust Cheney/Bush regarding WMD because he has all the information – the fact that he had a massive vested interest is just a minor quibble.

    Re western fairness – I don’t buy that at all, I think it is a flawed concept. To reuse the example imagine if we had to assume that Bush/Cheney were telling the truth until there was absolute proof they were lying. If I was to use that legal system then I’d consider this a civil case where we determine guilt based on the balance of probabilities – after all – no one is going to imprison anyone.

    “there’re also Google/Baidu cache proving the gymnasts are of age”

    the search engine didn’t write that evidence itself – its a series of Chinese government officials you are saying are unreliable. you might as well accuse a photo of lying. Anyway if you have other evidence then provide that evidence and we can asses it. If it is sufficient we will revise our views.

  16. Charles Liu Says:

    GNZ, according to western media reports, the FIG asked for, received, and assesed, old passports, family registry that are kept over the years, as well as birth certificates – things the public don’t have access to due to privacy concerns.

    Do you have any evidence to prove your allegation, insinuation, logical inferences not based on facts?

  17. GNZ Says:

    actually a better example might be OJ Simpson.

    as to evidence -> http://strydehax.blogspot.com there are quite a few facts there.

    I note however you don’t seem to be engaging with any points which we might be able to find some common ground – such as whether you think the FIG would be willing to declare China a cheat and a falsifier of passports and other identifying documents even if it thought they were or any references to actual evidence.

    Further the latter – you have asserted without supporting evidence something interesting – who said they received OLD passports? that would be interesting, the FIG doesn’t seem to have said that in their official communications.
    I’m also curious about what thing you think might be in He Kexin’s official documents that she can’t show any of them. I cant find anything in any of mine that is the least bit scary.

  18. Charles Liu Says:

    GNZ:

    – The fact additional documents including old passport, id, family registry being part of the 2nd investigation was well covered.

    – Documents of intensly personal nature are sensitive to public disclosure, thus give cause to protection of privacy.

    – If you want to keep speculating or doubting THE highest sports governing body on the matter, go ahead. There’s absolutely no proof they’ve found the additional docuements to be forgery and failed to act honestly.

    Again since you don’t believe in basic tenents like presumption of innocence, there’s really nothing to convince you of.

    But I will stand up for you and your so you will not be so easily convicted, or put thru the wringer over and over even after the highest authority have spoken. Because if I don’t, I will be next.

  19. GNZ Says:

    Got the original source? I think they are quoting “Lu Shanzhen” who surely you must admit has a certain interest not making he kexin look underage. Anyway, wondering what the dates were on the old passport etc, that would be interesting. Surely providing a little more detail doesn’t cause too much trouble for the gymnasts.

    “presumption of innocence”
    I am quite collectivist and believe I would protect you better than you would protect me – but even the US system doesn’t believe your principle – as per the OJ civil trial. What country does? Surely not China.

    “If you want to keep speculating or doubting THE highest sports governing body on the matter / But I will stand up for you and your so you will not be so easily convicted.”

    Considering your apparent distrust of government authority and expectation that it will abuse you, It is odd that you are the one arguing that we should believe unquestioningly the FIG and the documents produced by the Chinese authorities.

  20. GNZ Says:

    My impression is that you don’t actually deal with any of the substantive points of the case for the gymnasts being underage – except with fairly simple responses like “but they said they made a mistake” and “the FIG says so, so it is so” or “there is evidence out there I just don’t know where it is”. the old passport quote showed some promise but otherwise I’m afraid that doesn’t give me much to change my mind over.

    BTW where are the internet cached documents saying she is exactly the age she says she is that you say you know of?

    Unfortunately this is the same as every counter I have seen against the arguments of Stryde and others like him. facts vs hearsay. And then people like Stryde rip apart that heresay in a post and in their comments get only complaints that they hate little girls. It seems like it is stryde getting unfairly abused despite honestly trying to investigate something.

  21. FOARP Says:

    @Charles Liu – You still haven’t answered my questions:

    1) Why should people have to apologise for formulating opinions based on the ‘mistatements’ of others? Nobody has challenged the validity of the documents that StrydeHax found, nobody is saying that Cui et al did not make multiple stements indicating that He Kexin was underage – why then should people like Strydehax apologise? What do they have to apologise for?

    2) Are you accusing the people quoted in the original post of ‘hating’ He Kexin?

    3) If you are, can you please tell us on what grounds?

    On a side note – Nobody is wrong – China is most definitely communist! Anyone who says that a country ruled by a communist party, where the hammer and sickle flag is on display in every city and town, where the army is over watched by political commissars and is legally an armed wing of the communist party, in which students are members of the youth pioneers and wear the red neckerchief, where university students have to sit interminable lectures on marx-leninist Mao Zedong thought with Deng Xiaoping theory and a side-order of three represents, where the students are still taught to sing the Internationale – anyone who says that this country is not communist needs his head examining! China is non-communist in its economic system only, its political system, system of governance, military, education system and many other facets of everyday life are still most definitely communist.

    If, however, you insist that no country that operates a capitalist system can be called communist, then what is left? Only National Socialism, and I doubt that you want China to be referred to as a National Socialist country.

  22. FOARP Says:

    @Charles Liu – So aren’t you going to come and defend yourself? Why should anyone apologise except the people who made the ‘mistakes’? Why should those who listened to these ‘mistakes’ and formed their opinions accordingly be blamed for anything? Why do you think the fact that they went out and discovered these ‘mistakes’ (which were only admitted to after their discovery) shows that they ‘hate’ He Kexin? If you cannot defend what you have said here, will you apologise?

  23. FOARP Says:

    @Charles – So this is it: talk smack about other folk and then refuse to back it up?

  24. TenSaiNYer Says:

    can’t say if hate for He still exists, but hate for China still does.
    this blogger/vote site vindicates the gymnasts, but not so much from the commenters
    http://www.cheatorbeat.com/chinese-gymnastics-team-update/olympics/1140

  25. GNZ Says:

    I don’t think there was any doubt that some people hate/fear China and some hate/fear the USA.

    “fear is the path to the dark side. fear leads to anger. anger leads to hate. hate leads to suffering.”

  26. FOARP Says:

    @GNZ, TenSaiNYer – Guys, I certainly don’t hate He Kexin, or China, I don’t like the CCP, and I make no secret of this, but I have my reasons. I try not to play mind reader either.

  27. GNZ Says:

    Point I was trying to make was that some people don’t like China or the CCP (for whatever reason) – but that doesn’t mean that what they say is wrong or that because some people feel that way every one who doesn’t follow the party line is doing so purely (or even partly) out of hate and therefore should be ignored.

    Personally I have a fairly positive view of the CCP but I’m not going to pretend black is white just because it suits the short term interests of China/CCP. I also think it is a fairly unreasonable person who considers Stryde to be driven by hatred of China as opposed to more innocent things or those who might assume you (or I) hate He Kexin without, apparently, any justification besides that we don’t mindlessly protect her reputation (because we might care about public goods like having a fair Olympics).

  28. Charles Liu Says:

    GNZ, it doesn’t get any more fair than this – IOC/FIG, the highest international governing bodies on the matter, have investigated twice and exonorated He Kexin both times.

  29. TenSaiNYer Says:

    True, I just find it hard to believe, that some people can’t accept the findings after 2 investigations.

    What I find wierd is the result is kind of on the down low or more of an after thought rather than Front page news.
    take this for example,
    ABCnews.com, sports section, they are still running http://abcnews.go.com/Sports/wireStory?id=5875811
    on the front page, and no update or link to the result of the fig investigation. I had to run a search to find the updated story http://abcnews.go.com/Sports/WireStory?id=5933034&page=1

    Granted, there ARE bigger stories than this, US financial crisis, tainted milk scandal, etc.

  30. GNZ Says:

    Charles,
    Well then you are just wrong, it can get fairer than that.
    One example would be if you could go to the Olympics and be fairly confident almost everyone involved was playing fair.

    and I also note that that doesn’t address my point.

  31. Bob Says:

    GNZ, that’s not really a good example. Decisions made during game time or at real time are far more prone to errors.

  32. GNZ Says:

    The only country the FIG has ever found against was North Korea and that only because they couldn’t resist putting an 11 year old up (who, of course, easily beat most of the oldies) and then displaying an outstanding level of incompetence in faking her age, for example saying she was 15 for 3 consecutive years (I presume they reissued her passport…) And hardly anyone thinks that they were the only ones cheating – although they may have been the stupidest.

    If it takes years for one to only just make out an elephant in front of ones face that implies we should not believe one if one say there are absolutely no mice in the room.

  33. Charles Liu Says:

    GNZ, I hope you and yours will never be convicted on so little as “North Korea is not the only one”, nor should you and yours ever be presumed guilty because “it takes years to prove otherwise”.

    There ain’t no higher authority on this; FIG is the messiah of gymnast age. Until the FIG changes it’s verdict, that’s it, He Kexin is not guilty.

  34. jjyz Says:

    [removed]

  35. GNZ Says:

    It isn’t a trial of He Kexin and she cant be “guilty” since there is no law for her to break. What you could consider to be on trial is the FIG.

    And that nth Korea did it is not the main part of the evidence and frankly it is grossly dishonest for you to pretend that it is. shall I give the website to you again? http://strydehax.blogspot.com/

  36. GNZ Says:

    And that nth Korea did it is not the main part of the evidence and frankly it is grossly dishonest for you to pretend that it is. shall I give the website to you again?

  37. GNZ Says:

    It isn’t a trial of He Kexin and she cant be “guilty” since there is no law for her to break. What you could consider to be on trial is the FIG.

    Anyway – in life one doesn’t just need protection from the authorities one also needs protection by the authorities. that balance cannot be so far in favour of the former to make the latter nonexistant.

  38. GNZ Says:

    OK Bob ‘ll try to construct a much tighter analogy

    first – the policy that the Olympics has regarding age is the equivalent of he anti child labour policy that many countries have. the idea is that if you ‘buy’ the product of underage Olympians you effectively pay for child abuse (you might agree or disagree but that is the logic behind it so this part of the analogy is pretty tight).

    Now the highest authority on child abuse is the country in question. But many people in the west will indeed refuse to buy products from companies that aid agencies (just people – the equivalent of Stryde) tell them are using child labour (especially if they provide photos of documents where they admit to doing it). The argument seems to imply that it would be morally abhorrent to question the innocence of such companies until their own government convicts them.

  39. GNZ Says:

    the other good thing about that analogy is it highlights that the gymnasts are not so much the criminal as the victim in the same way as child labour in africa might (also) be seen as people denied an education and being pushed into dangerous environments, but certainly not as criminals.

  40. Nobody Says:

    On a side note – Nobody is wrong – China is most definitely communist! – anyone who says that this country is not communist needs his head examining!

    so opines “F.O.A.R.P.” / Fear Of A Red Planet. – Anyone who is still stuck in that cold war mentality and living in such imagined fear had better get hisself admitted and his bloated head examined.

    The New York Inquirer: Is China Communist?

    No.

    by Andrew Bast

    Pop Quiz! One question, and it seems simple. Q) Is China Communist? A) Yes, there are more than a billion commies living the Marxist utopian ideal in the East. B) No, they’re unforgiving, shrewd, money-hungry capitalists like the rest of us.

    Correct answer: B.

    China’s no more red than Michael Moore telling his accountant to buy low and sell high.

    I rest my case…Fear of a red planet, ha. Yeah, right. The Martians are coming.

    Oh, and here’s evidence of fear mongering, sloppy, lazy & plan BS at the highest level of this F.O.A.R.P type Western government.

    http://www.brasschecktv.com/page/439.html

  41. TommyBahamas Says:

    Is China Communist? No.:

    Comments

    Be careful. Even though China has (at least on the surface) liberalized their economy for the purpose of attracting foreign investment (for further infrastructure-building,) their government is still firmly under the control of the Chinese Communist Party whose goals are unquestionably Marxist (just visit their website).

    Also, General Secretary Hu Jintao has made public statements suggesting that he is more ideological than his forebears (e.g. his labelling of Gorbachev as a “betrayer of socialism”) He has vociferously criticized the widening income gap among the Chinese population and, in response, has launched a campaign to build a “harmonious society”. Furthermore, he has unceremoniously cracked down on corruption within the party (in other words, he’s liquidated the “capitalist roaders”) and will undoubtedly replace them with like-minded cadres more loyal to the cause of building socialism.

    Finally, we know from history that communists in general are conniving and surreptitious. Regardless of what the Chinese government says “officially” in the press, we can never be fully certain of their true intentions. Of course, this applies to every government so I will concede that this is not my strongest argument.

    Contrary to popular thinking, communism is not a monolithic philosophy; it is highly flexible and can be applied in numerous ways in light of different historical circumstances, provided that the overall strategy – attaining communism – is never compromised. With regard to the Chinese, even though their tactics have changed, their strategy is still very much the same.

    Posted by: A.N.P. |

    In response to A.N.P.’s comment:

    It is true that Hu Jintao has worked to soften some of the disparities produced by China’s market economy by, for example, cutting taxes on farmers (hardly what you would expect of a “conniving” communist) and, yes, speaking at length on a “harmonious society.”

    And, as A.N.P. says, communism is not a monolithic philosophy. Mao Zedong, for example, redefined communism dramatically, annoying the Soviets in the process.

    But gutting social services, giving workers the boot and allowing businesspeople into the Party is so far from central communist tenents that it begs the question: if China is experiencing, as its leaders say, “socialism with Chinese characteristics” and those “characteristics” are undistinguishable from those of capitalism, isn’t China either capitalist or we Americans communist?

    There have been plenty of Leninist, one-party states that have been capitalist. Chiang Kaishek’s government in Taiwan was one.

    The People’s Republic of China is another.

    Posted by: Manfred |

  42. TommyBahamas Says:

    All I gotta say is, It was a fantastic Olympic, one that will be remembered as one of the Greatest Sport events of modern era. Kudos to the CCP and the congratulations to the Chinese people.

  43. Wukailong Says:

    @Nobody, TommyBahamas:

    Some time ago, I wrote the text below. While it’s hard to say whether or not the CCP is communist, it would be as wrong to say that it is capitalist. Text follows:

    “1. Its stated goals are different than those of right-wing parties, which mainly advocate free enterprise and a small state. The CCP still advocates creating a communist society sometime in the future; more realistically, its main goal for the coming decades seems to be to create an affluent country with a fair amount of income distribution. This places it somewhere along the social democrats in other countries (note that the social democrats too mainly espoused strong growth and free trade before income distribution and welfare could be implemented in earnest).

    2. It is still based on a leninist structure and one-party politics. Similar to previously communist countries like the former Soviet Union, it has a two-tier system where the party bypasses ordinary state channels. The military is under party rather than state control, and the army keeps the system of political commissars originally devised by the Soviet Union. Despite talks about implementing rule of law, courts are under political control.

    3. Except economically, it still identifies itself as opposed to many ideologies of Western countries, and presents itself as a natural ally with countries like Cuba and North Korea. Marxism is still taught in all levels of the educational system, and is used as the framework for understanding all policies, including economic ones.

    What is unique with the CCP (and its Vietnamese counterpart) is that it is the first party of the previous communist bloc to successfully change its economic system without losing legitimacy, and also to successfully change its ruling paradigm from “revolution” to “reform”.”

  44. Wukailong Says:

    Btw, “Nobody is wrong” is an interesting statement. It reminds me of a story in Greek mythology.

  45. FOARP Says:

    “On a side note – Nobody is wrong – China is most definitely communist! – anyone who says that this country is not communist needs his head examining!”

    You misquoted me, making it look as if I had no reason to say what I said. In fact, here is what I actually said:

    On a side note – Nobody is wrong – China is most definitely communist! Anyone who says that a country ruled by a communist party, where the hammer and sickle flag is on display in every city and town, where the army is over watched by political commissars and is legally an armed wing of the communist party, in which students are members of the youth pioneers and wear the red neckerchief, where university students have to sit interminable lectures on marx-leninist Mao Zedong thought with Deng Xiaoping theory and a side-order of three represents, where the students are still taught to sing the Internationale – anyone who says that this country is not communist needs his head examining! China is non-communist in its economic system only, its political system, system of governance, military, education system and many other facets of everyday life are still most definitely communist.

    I listed a good few reasons as to why I think as I do, many of which chime with what WKL and Tommybahamas said. The weirdest thing is the way in which people who refer to a country ruled by a communist party as communist find themselves criticised as suffering from a ‘cold war mentality’ or even as being racists when they do. There is nothing ‘cold war’ or racist in saying that although the economic system in China incorporates most of the elements of free-market capitalism, the political system has not really changed at all. What is ‘cold war’ about referring to a country where the first article of the constitution states . . . .

    “Article 1. The People’s Republic of China is a socialist state under the people’s democratic dictatorship led by the working class and based on the alliance of workers and peasants. The socialist system is the basic system of the People’s Republic of China. Sabotage of the socialist system by any organization or individual is prohibited.”

    . . . as communistic. It doesn’t matter that countries like the UK, Sweden, Canada, and (yes!) the USA are far more successful examples of the principles of socialism than the PRC, the PRC is still a single-party dictatorship under a communist party in which the party exercises powers above and beyond those exercised by political parties in democratic societies – or even in the average fascist state. In fact the Communist party in many ways is the state, and there is therefore no error in referring to China as a communist country, as long as you are aware that this does not mean that it has a communist economic system.

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