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Sep 29

Responding to Zhang Weiwei – Democracy and China

Written by: Raj | Filed under:Analysis, General, Opinion, politics | Tags:,
90 Comments » newest 2010-11-21 01:26:09

I would like to thank btbr403 for translating Zhang’s article that was recently posted on to Fools Mountain. In it he said that he had never found an example of a developing country that had “realized its modernization through democratization”. He then proceeded to refute examples cited that could apply and called for a non-western form of democracy for China.

However, Zhang’s conclusions and the method he used to reach them are fundamentally flawed. It starts with a serious lack of understanding of what democracy means these days. As I discussed in a previous post, democracy is not just having elections. It is about an entire system that crosses the country, in regards to not just elections but also the media, judiciary, rule of law and civil rights. If one does not recognise how they are all linked and that if any particular aspect is attacked the rest can be equally compromised, the entire discussion becomes pointless. It also doesn’t help that he gives no definition of “modernization”. Continue reading »

Sep 29

In my prior post about Japan’s new Prime Minister, Yukio Hatoyama’s opinion piece on the NYT, I was encouraged by Hatoyama’s view of an Asian Union. This is an interesting trend I encourage our readers to follow. Xinhua reported Chinese Foreign Minister Yang Jiechi, Japanese Foreign Minister Katsuya Okada and ROK Foreign Affairs and Trade Minister Yu Myung Hwan has met in Shanghai on September 28, 2009 to “deepen their all-round cooperative partnership.” This is in preparation for the three countries top leaders to meet in October in Beijing. It will be interesting to see what new trilateral agreements they reach by then, at which time the top leaders will endorse and announce.

Sep 26

Here is one of the many links on this story
http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/business/8262477.stm

This is free advertising for Made-in-China corp. – different from another bad story on bad quality on Chinese products.

The story has a kind, warm human touch too. Thanks Buffett!

Sep 25

Here is something interesting I found on Youtube.  For all the talk about China spreading propaganda and indoctrinating their children – you know teaching children about the greatness of their nation, their leader, their history … about the importance of social harmony …  instilling hope for a better future – does the U.S. really look that different?

Continue reading »

Sep 24

minipost-Sustaining Fools Mountain

Written by: dewang | Filed under:-mini-posts, General | Tags:, ,
8 Comments » newest 2009-10-11 15:37:35

Dear Readers and Contributors,

Many of you know, Fools Mountain is a very unique blog and is one that is widely recognized in the China blogsphere. To date, all the costs associated with hosting and bandwidth have been paid privately by admin. We would like to make FM more self sustaining. Our first step is to make hosting and bandwidth costs community sponsored. Following that, we hope to use additional funds to license new contents or procure services to further enhance the blog for the benefit of the FM community.
Continue reading »

Sep 23

minipost-Sound Unlimited!

Written by: Steve | Filed under:-mini-posts, culture, media, music | Tags:, ,
1 Comment » newest 2009-09-25 00:05:49

Louis Yu’s new show called Sound Unlimited has hit the net. This show features indie music from all over the world, including the hottest bands in China. The format is in Chinese and you can download the podcast here or subscribe to it on iTunes.

Take a few minutes to check it out. It’s very rare (if not unique) to be able to find a music podcast from North America (in this case, Vancouver) that caters to the Chinese market. I can guarantee you that Lou knows his music and you’ll be exposed to many top bands you’ve never heard nor seen before.

Sep 21

In this installment, Compton talks to Fools Mountain about the business climate in China. As a venture capitalist and a business executive, Compton brings a very unique perspective on “where China is at” in her development. In producing the documentary film, “Win in China,” he has had chance to interact with many business leaders in China.
Continue reading »

Sep 20

admin’s note. The following is a blog post from 多维博客(h/t to Snow). Besides re-posting an article originally published on the Study Times (a weekly publication of the CCP’s Central Party School) in 2008, it drew a vigorous debate among Chinese with nearly 300 comments (I hope that someone could translate them too), many of them are interesting. Although we posted the Chinese version last year and A-gu commented on that, it was until recently that btbr403 volunteered to translate it. DeWang and Allen helped with the translation.

Following is the translation of the original post:

The Study Times of The Central Party School published an article by Zhang Weiwei (he was Deng XiaoPing’s interpreter, and he wrote an opinion piece The allure of the Chinese model ), a senior research fellow at the Modern Asia Research Centre, University of Geneva, Switzerland. He showed his excellent eloquence in the invitation only Marshall Forum on Transatlantic Affairs, saying that he had visited more than 100 countries, but couldn’t find one that achieved modernization via democratization. The European and American scholars present couldn’t find any examples to refute him.
Continue reading »

Sep 16

rolf Says: September 12th, 2009 at 5:46 pm
rolf, you’ve been warned against thread-jacking and off-topic nonsense before.
Post deleted (probably by Raj)

I think this is quite serious. In a way I am warned that if I mention CIA/NED once more, I will be banned. The person(s) who is doing this wants probably the discussion on Xinjiang to focus on the contradictions between Hans and uighur, which will make Hans the main culprit and harm Chinas unity.

In my opinion it is impossible to have such strong and cruel riots as in Xinjiang and Tibet, without a strong organization and outside backing and training. Ordinary people just don’t kill, invalidize and hurt so many in such a short time. It can only be done by trained killers. The main culprits are Al-Qaeda, some Istanbul based Big-Turkey-organizations and CIA/NED. CIA is the most plausible. If you look at www.ned.org you can see that CIA supports the Xinjiang and Tibet separatists economically. If you listen to or read http://www.voa.gov the link to the American government is strengthened a lot. The same if you read http://www.uyghurcongress.org

It has been very alarming to look at some of the You Tube videos from the riots in Tibet and Xinjiang – where you can see how well-trained and focused some of the rioters are.

I am now not allowed to mention CIA in connection with Xinjiang. I protest this censorship. The person(s) who censor these views are not at all deserving their administrator responsibility.

Fools Mountain is indirectly and unintentionally supporting separatism by suppressing views about imperialism. I felt this at once when I first looked at your site about a year ago. It is a bit sad because you are the only “Western” site on the internet which is positive about China. In a way by your administrator policies you are leading the discussion astray.

Regards Rolf

Sep 16

minipost-Memories of Mao

Written by: guest | Filed under:-guest-posts, -mini-posts | 61 Comments » newest 2009-10-13 03:38:24

http://www.atimes.com/atimes/China/KI17Ad03.html

As the countdown of the 60th anniversary of the founding of the modern China looms, it seems that China is getting ready for the big party, from the restoration of Chang’an street to the Film created for the special occasion Jianguo Daye. One thing that seems to be absent in this occasion is Mao himself.

By all means Mao is regarded to many Chinese as the George Washington of China when China rose as a nation from the burning ashes of WWII. Yet, the Chinese media did not mention anything of his death at September 9. The movie released at 10/1 Jianguo Daye means “Lofty Ambitions of Founding a Republic” doesn’t sound ‘patriotic.’ Even textbooks are devote less space for Mao than the previous years.

Chinese history wrote of Mao’s deeds of 70-30 (70% good, 30% bad). The older generation Chinese remember China before 1949 have great regards of Mao because they have seen the devastation of WWII. The middle generation Chinese have bad memories of Mao because of the cultural revolution and great leap forward. The young generation Chinese care less about Mao, and tend to remember what Deng Xiaoping, Jiang Zemin and Hu Jintao did.

What do you think of him?

Sep 15

Reflections on the Compton-Zhao Debate

Written by: berlinf | Filed under:education, General | Tags:, , , ,
33 Comments » newest 2009-09-29 13:46:36

Video: The Zhao vs. Compton Debate

It’s surreal to hear Dr. Zhao from China working in the US defending the US educational system while Mr. Compton advocating that the US learn from China’s system. One thing is for sure: the world is getting flat.

The rest are open to debate.

As I watched this debate, a story that came to mind was the meteorologist forecasting a severely cold winter after seeing Indians hording chopped wood, while the Indian got the idea from the meteorologist who had suggested earlier that the winter would probably be cold. This happens when you make comparisons between two moving targets. In recent years, China is learning from “developed countries” such as US itself, ways to move away from the test-driven education system toward more “rounded education”. I am a reviewer of an educational journal in China and I constantly find papers describing “US experiences” and their implication for China. In the meantime, school curriculum is including an increasing number of subjects that Mr. Compton might be laughing at, such as life skills training. And here we are: Mr. Compton told us that the US should learn from China. Now what? Continue reading »

Sep 15

Panda loves bamboo, and so did ancient Chinese musicians. Here is an image of a ceramic xiao () player excavated from an Eastern Han Dynasty (25-220 AD) tomb in Sichuan province (also home to pandas). The dizi (笛子) is held horizontally. Both are made of bamboo. What do you get when you add the Mongolian morin khurr to the mix? Here is a composition involving these instruments: “梦回鄂尔多斯 (Dreaming Ordus).” Ordus (鄂尔多斯) is a city in Inner Mongolia, China.
Sep 14

main_educationIn the second part of our interview with Robert Compton, We delve more deeply into his film “Two Million Minutes” which looks at the pre-university educational systems of India and China and compares them to the equivalent curriculum in the United States. Some of the topics discussed are:

1) What are the comparative number of science courses taught in high school and the amount of time spent on the social sciences and world history?

2) What do Indian and Chinese educators see as the areas most in need of reform within their own schools? Are there myths within the Chinese and Indian educational establishment as to their own perceived weaknesses?

3) How are China, India and the United States approaching the key 21st century industries, especially the ones concerning environmental and energy issues?

Continue reading »

Sep 13

Ma’s ECFA – a win-win policy or selling out local business?

Written by: Raj | Filed under:General | Tags:, ,
8 Comments » newest 2009-09-16 17:05:11

Given the recent post on the verdict in former Taiwanese President Chen Shui-Bian’s case, I thought another topic on Taiwan would be a good idea. The proposed China-Taiwan Economic Cooperation Framework Agreement is a key piece of legislation for Taiwan’s future and therefore worthy of discussion.

A question I’ve increasingly asked myself is whether this is a win-win agreement for Taiwan as the KMT and other Pan-Blues would have it, or actually win-win for a handful of big companies and lose-lose for smaller, local businesses. AFP have an article on the ECFA and its potential impact on this part of Taiwanese industry. Continue reading »

Sep 12

In the continuing saga that is Chen Shui Bian’s colorful life, a trial court in Taipei sentenced Chen to life in prison yesterday as the first phase of his dramatic corruption and embezzlement trial came to an end. Chen’s wife, Wu Shu-chen, received a life sentence on corruption charges. Their son and daughter-in-law, convicted of money laundering, received relatively lenient 2 1/2 – and one-year terms. Continue reading »

Sep 09

minipost-Where was the current US President born?

Written by: guest | Filed under:-guest-posts, -mini-posts | 39 Comments » newest 2009-09-16 18:22:43

A case was filed last month at a US Court alleging US President Obama was born at hospital in Coast Province, the Repulic of Kenya. The case file can be read from here

http://www.orlytaitzesq.com/kenyan-birth-motion-to-expedite-authentication.htm

The core piece of evidence is a birth certificate obtained through back channel by an immigration lawyer.

http://www.orlytaitzesq.com/obama-certified-copy-of-registration-of-birth-in-kenya.htm

More can be followed on this attorney’s blog

http://www.orlytaitzesq.com/blog1/

There were some allegation during last year’s US President election but was rejected as speculation. With newly found evidence, what will be the outcome of this case?

Sep 09

minipost-Four In Urumqi Indicted Over Needling Pedestrian

Written by: Charles Liu | Filed under:-guest-posts, -mini-posts, General, News | Tags:, ,
7 Comments » newest 2009-09-11 05:27:51

Four In Urumqi Indicted Over Needling Pedestrian:

According to Xinhua News on 9/7, prosecutors in Urumqi indicted 4 people over Shaoximen needling case on 9/3. This is the second case of needling the Urumqi prosecutors have filed.

Suspects Abdul-Rusuli Abdul-Kedl, Abdul-Rahman Abdul-Razzaq, Abdul-Keyoumu Abdul-Aufu, Abdul-mithi Mamati, around 9/3 10:30 followed a woman (surname Lee) into pedestrian underpass in Urumqi’s Shaoximen area. When they passed Lee, Abdul-Rusuli Abdul-Kedl with help of three others, stabbed Lee’s neck with a hyperdermic needle.

Withe the help of the crowd, the four were caught at the scene. On the 3rd they were detained by Urumqi police on the charge of endangering public safety. On the 7th, the case was moved to the prosecutors, and the four were offcially arrested. Urumqi police carried out the order on the 7th.

Urumqi prosecutors said, these four suspect ignored established laws, needling women in the public, severely distrupted social order with serious consquences. A crime has clearly taken place, with concrete evidence.

Sep 08

Bob Compton and U.S. President Obama

Bob Compton talks to U.S. President Obama abour education reform

More Americans are becoming aware of Bob Compton (standing next to U.S. President Obama in the picture to the left) for his efforts in changing America’s education system.Compton is one of the most successful businessmen in America.He has created numerous companies, lead companies with sales of a million dollars to hundreds of millions, and served as President of NYSE-listed companies.  He is an active venture capitalist as well as an angel investor.  Compton traveled the world extensively.  He is also keenly interested in what is happening outside the USA.  His funded companies hire engineers in China and India.

Compton produced two documentary films:  “Two Million Minutes” and “Win in China.”

Continue reading »

Sep 07

minipost-City of Dreams, or nightmare?

Written by: guest | Filed under:-guest-posts, -mini-posts | Tags:, ,
25 Comments » newest 2009-09-15 13:41:53

The Boston Globe article on this Sunday.

“In 1842, on a British warship anchored off the city of Nanjing, Chinese and British representatives signed a treaty that brought the First Opium War to an end. The British victory had been decisive, and along with the reparations and trade concessions exacted from China was the requirement that Hong Kong, a coastal island sparsely populated by farmers, fishermen, and the occasional pirate, be given to the British in perpetuity as a crown colony.’

———
A kind of upset of the article twisting history and the truth. It reflects the ignorance of the west and journalists.

How outrageous to say the opium pusher (the Britons), was good for the victim (Chinese)?

If it is your reason using force to enforce the opium trade to developing countries, what kind of civilization we’re in?

The British Parliament favored trade profit over justice. They had nothing to trade with China’s silk, porcelain…, but plenty of opium grown in India.

Britons did provide Hong Kong with stability (but stole a lot from Hong Kong as most colonial masters did). HK’s success is on mainly due to its special location (close to China), the expert businessmen from Shanghai and the cheap labor of the refugees.

Sep 05

Following the earlier riots in Xinjiang in July, there has been more unrest in the province – at least five people have died, with more injured. The BBC has picked up on a Xinhua report that says the top official for Urumqi and a Police chief have been fired. Continue reading »

Sep 03

Jon Huntsman Challenges in China

Written by: guest | Filed under:-guest-posts | Tags:, ,
30 Comments » newest 2009-10-28 15:26:57

Jon Huntsman the current Ambassador to China has an interview with WSJ about the current challenges in China.

http://online.wsj.com/article/SB125191530217380465.html

BEIJING — Relations between China and the U.S. are at a critical phase, with the next few months likely to test whether the two sides really have built strong and lasting ties, said the new U.S. ambassador to China, Jon Huntsman Jr.

In his first sit-down interview with Western media since arriving here last month, the 49-year-old former Republican governor of Utah spoke of his long ties to China, including his 10-year-old adopted Chinese daughter’s excitement at returning to her roots and how as a young man himself he had a brush with global diplomacy when he helped former Secretary of State Henry Kissinger set off on a secret mission to China.

Mr. Huntsman on Wednesday mostly mused about the array of serious challenges that the two countries have to deal with in the next few months, including climate change, the global economy and military ties.

“We’re putting the relationship to the test, there’s no doubt about that,” Mr. Huntsman said. “And I suspect we have more on our plate than ever before in our 30 years of a formal diplomatic relationship.”

On Wednesday, for example, the U.S. trade representative was due to make a recommendation to President Barack Obama on a request by U.S. tire manufacturers to limit Chinese-made tire imports. The two sides have to cooperate on addressing global economic woes, with China critical of the ballooning U.S. budget deficit and weak dollar. In addition, the two sides face sticky issues in dealing with North Korea and Iran, two countries that aspire to develop nuclear weapons.

The two sides are also engaged in difficult negotiations about climate change, with pressure building for a deal during President Obama’s planned trip to China in mid-November. Before setting out for China, Mr. Huntsman said, Mr. Obama told him to focus on a few big-picture issues: global economy, energy and climate change.

U.S. ambassador to China Jon Huntsman, Jr., says relations between the countries are at a critical point. Still, Huntsman expressed hope that despite inevitable disagreements, the two nations could work together.
Read More

“China is in fact a stakeholder in all of these issues, and arguably wasn’t in years past,” Mr. Huntsman said. “If there’s one aspect of the relationship that’s unique and different from what it was before, it is the number of truly global issues that together we’re approaching and hoping to seek solutions on.”

Mr. Huntsman said there already are signs of progress. Ties between the two countries’ militaries are restarting after a year of frosty relations that was triggered by Washington’s agreeing to sell weapons to Taiwan, China’s rival. Also, a regular dialogue on human rights is due to restart this year after more than eight years of virtually no discussion.

The two countries’ more mature ties were reflected in talks Mr. Huntsman had with Chinese leader Hu Jintao, when the ambassador was received last week in the Zhongnanhai leadership compound in downtown Beijing, seat of the central government’s power. “He was very forthright in saying we have to realize we’re not just going to always agree on all issues. I didn’t expect to hear that.”

Mr. Huntsman succeeds Clark T. Randt, whose more-than-seven-year term made him the longest-serving U.S. ambassador to China. Unlike Mr. Randt, who went to college with George W. Bush, Mr. Huntsman isn’t personally close to President Obama — and indeed is from the other main U.S. political party.

But Mr. Huntsman does have extensive experience in Asia. He was a Mormon missionary in Taiwan, where he learned to speak mandarin Chinese fluently, and he served briefly as ambassador to Singapore. He also worked in the office of the U.S. trade representative when China joined the World Trade Organization in 2001.

His family business, Huntsman Corp., has business ties in China, but Mr. Huntsman said he had long since sold his stake in the company and has no ties to it. He also said he had signed standard ethics papers recusing him from any issues surrounding the chemical company.

In the weeks before his departure, he said his adopted daughter eagerly anticipated returning to the country of her birth — a feeling that has become infectious. “I see it in her eyes every day the excitement of living in a place she never thought she’d return to,” he said.

He also recounted his own childhood experience: how as an 11-year-old he was at the White House where his father was working as a staff assistant. It was 1971 and Secretary of State Kissinger invited him to his office and let him take his bag to his car before setting out on one of the path-breaking trips to China, which led to the re-establishment of relations in 1979.

“The part I remember best was when I said where are you going?” Mr. Huntsman said. “He said please don’t tell anyone: ‘I’m going to China.’ ”

I do have a question about the relations between the 2 countries are on the ‘critical phase.’ China has more or less enjoyed the relationship with the US under the George W. Bush’s presidency. Huntsman’s predecessor Clark T. Randt Jr, did little to engage China on the sensitive issues while promoting economic ties between the 2 countries. Also, GWB’s insist to go to the Olympics opening ceremony despite mounting criticism was much a face saving gesture to China.

The other US presidents wasn’t as kind to China. Then first lady Hillary Clinton came to China in 1995 and ‘shamed’ China on women’s rights. George HW Bush put sanctions on China after the Tiananmen Square incident in 1989. GWB’s presidency was the best thing since Henry Kissinger decided to have formal ties with China. Could Barack Obama and Jon Huntsman do better than what GWB did during his 8 years of presidency?