Understanding China, One Blog at a Time

An American in China

Archive for July 14th, 2010

Coal Mining in China- Like Real Men

Posted by w_thames_the_d on July 14, 2010

This is how they are using those 1.3 billion plus people, the old fashioned way. They stick them in a coal pit without masks and work them like bastards…

Exhausting day at a coal factory
Workers separate coal from bastard coal at a state-owned coal factory in Huaibei city, Anhui province on July 13, 2010. [Photo/Asianews]

Posted in China Fact, Cultural oddities | 1 Comment »

China Montage

Posted by w_thames_the_d on July 14, 2010

Just a bunch of pictures, they are (you can guess the order) regular China, CCTV building in Beijing, CCTV building looking vulgar, annoying Chinese motorcycle man, other

Posted in Photos | 1 Comment »

Rare Sighting- Chinese Lining up Properly

Posted by w_thames_the_d on July 14, 2010

The Chinese are not known for their patience while waiting in line, but this photo captures a beautiful and rare sight. Chinese queuing up and being patient!!!

{I was told that they were waiting for bus)

Posted in Photos | Leave a Comment »

Working in China- Time to Relax

Posted by w_thames_the_d on July 14, 2010

Photo by SOHO in Beijing, these guys are typical migrant workers, probably make less than 100U$ per month, if their bosses don’t cheat them out of their wages.

Posted in Working and Living in China | Leave a Comment »

Hierarchy in China

Posted by w_thames_the_d on July 14, 2010

In China, and Asia I believe, hierarchy is important. Thus, in Chinese, the word for older brother and sister are younger than the word for younger brother and sister. Also, your moms older sister is your aunt, but this name is different from the name you would call yuour mom’s younger sister, who is also your aunt. Thus in China, it is difficult to merely tell one that you have a brother and sister. You must state their age rank relative to your own.

Posted in China Fact, Cultural oddities | Leave a Comment »

Chinese Police Open up Propaganda Hotline – I mean Public Relations Department

Posted by w_thames_the_d on July 14, 2010

Beijing is opening up a public relations department, nowadays it is just a good practice. Also, when you consistently beat the shit out of people and deprive them of their hu-man rgghts and dignity, a little goes a long way, or is it just me?

excerpt china daily:

“Netizens will be able to communicate with the Beijing police through microblogs in the near future, with the founding of the Beijing police’s first public relations branch. The public relations branch, officially established on Tuesday, is part of the Beijing police’s plan to better their relationship with residents.

Fu Zhenghua, director of the bureau, said at a press conference that the police are facing more challenges and pressure when trying to influence public opinion on police-related news.

Beijing has a population of 20 million residents, 10 million of which are Internet users.

Posted in Big brother... | 1 Comment »

China Fact- Big Brother in China, Effecting the Media

Posted by w_thames_the_d on July 14, 2010

The Chinese communist party likes to act as if their is freedom of the press, but in reality this is an untruth. The following are the facts
China’s State Secrecy Bureau [国家保密局] chills freedom of expression by exploiting China’s state secrets laws and designating practically all information relating to China’s government, economy, diplomacy, technology, and military as potentially a state secret, and making China’s citizens, and not the government, responsible for maintaining these secrets
The Central Propaganda Department [中共中央宣传部] is the Communist Party’s counterpart to the government’s GAPP and SARFT. Whereas the GAPP and SARFT exercise their censorship powers through their authority to license (and rescind the licenses of) publishers, the CPD is the organization primarily responsible for monitoring content to ensure that China’s publishers, in particular its news publishers, do not print anything that is inconsistent with the Communist Party’s political dogma. It does this by:

For an example of how the GAPP and the CPD work together to ensure that China’s people are not able to print criticisms of their own leaders, see the Regulations Regarding Strengthening the Administration of Publications Describing Major Party and National Leaders:

4. When relevant publishing houses are arranging for the publication of topics for these types of books, local publishing houses shall provide drafts to their local Press and Publication Office, which shall read and evaluate the manuscript and offer their opinions, and after receiving approval from the Communist Party Propaganda Department shall provide it to the General Administration of Press and Publication for examination and approval. Central level publishing houses shall provide a draft to their responsible department, and after the responsible department has reviewed the manuscript and provided an opinion, provide it to the General Administration of Press and Publication for examination and approval. Manuscripts written about major Party and national leaders who are currently living must solicit the opinions of that person prior to submission to the General Administration of Press and Publication.

The CPD also works closely with the SARFT. See, for example, the Notice Regarding Strengthening the Administration Work of Provincial Level Television Satellite Program Channels:

(1) Satellite television channels shall strictly observe propaganda requirements, and firmly observe correct guidance of public opinion. With respect to reports on important events, breaking stories and other sensitive issues, they must obey the integrated dispositions of the local party committee Propaganda Departments, and strictly abide by Party discipline.

The General Administration of Press and Publication [新闻出版总署] is the government’s administrative agency responsible for drafting and enforcing China’s prior restraint regulations, as well as for screening books discussing “important topics.” Specifically, the GAPP’s responsibilities include:

  • Formulating and guiding implementation of the development planning, macro-economic regulation goals and production policies for the news publishing industry;
  • Formulating plans and organizing implementation of the quantity, structure, and distribution for the entire nation’s publishing, printing, copying, and distribution units;
  • Approving the establishment of new publishing units (including book publishing houses, newspaper publishers, periodical publishers, audio-visual product publishers, etc.) and publication distributors (including books, newspapers, periodicals, audio-visual products, etc.);
  • Carrying out the monitoring and management of news publishing activities (including publishing, printing, copying, distribution, import, and trade);
  • Investigating and prosecuting, or organizing the investigation and prosecution of, illegal publications and the illegal activities of publishing, printing, copying, distribution, and import and export units; and
  • Examining and approving applications for Internet sites to engage in information services, and carry out monitoring and management of the contents of information published on the Internet.

The GAPP has the legal authority to screen, censor, and ban any print, electronic, or Internet publication in China. Because all publishers (including Internet publishers) in China are required to be licensed by the GAPP, that agency also has the power to deny people the right to publish, and completely shut down any publisher who fails to follow its dictates.

For an example of how the GAPP exercises its authority, see the Notice Regarding Resolutely Clamping Down on Illegal Publishing Activities:

In accordance with State regulations, no entity or individual may engage in publishing, printing, copying or distributing books, newspapers, periodicals, or audio-visual publications without authorization from the General Administration of Press and Publication.

More recently, in December, 2003 the GAPP announced that it was kicking off a year-long program to increase scrutiny of publications by banning 19 dictionaries.

China’s State Administration of Radio, Film and Television [广播电影电视总局] controls the content of all radio, television, satellite, and Internet broadcasts in China (including, where it is able, foreign satellite broadcasts).
China’s Ministry for Information Industry [信息产业部] is responsible for regulating China’s telecommunications and software industries. Pursuant to the Measures for the Administration of Internet Information Services, however, it also controls the licensing and registration of all “Internet information services” (sometimes translated as “Internet content providers”), which are defined to include anyone providing information to the public via the Internet.
The State Council is the supreme administrative organ of state power. According to the website of China’s State Council Information Office [国务院信息办公室] (www.china.org.cn), the SCIO’s job is to “promote Chinese media to publicize China to the world, including introducing China’s policies, stands, economic development, history and culture.” It is also responsible, however, for restricting who may post news on the Internet:

  • The State Council Information Office shall be responsible for the work of administering the operations of the nation’s Internet sites engaging in posting news.
  • News units establishing news websites to engage in news publishing operations shall report to the State Council Information Office or the provincial, autonomous region or independent municipality people’s government information office.
  • General interest non-news unit websites that engage in news posting operations shall, in accordance with Article 7 of these Provisions, after receiving examination and approval from the people’s government information offices for the provinces, autonomous regions and independent municipalities, submit to examination and verification by the State Council Information Office.

While China’s courts do not engage in actual censorship themselves, it is China’s judges, perhaps more than any other group, who chill freedom of expression in China by imprisoning people who are guilty of nothing other than expressing opinions inconsistent with those of the Communist Party. Judges in China encourage self-censorship in the following ways:

  • Chinese courts generally simply issue opinions that restate the law, but provide no guidance as to how it was violated.
  • Judges in China do not consider whether a given publication actually represented any realistic threat to national security.
  • Courts in China do not engage in constitutional interpretation and do not try to limit state power in order to protect citizens’ rights.

Posted in China Fact | 1 Comment »

China’s History of Land Ownership

Posted by w_thames_the_d on July 14, 2010

Below is an interesting piece of history on Chinese land ownership from this article. This is important as from 1950 until the past eith years, China did not recognize the right of private ownership of property, it all belonged to the collective.

” In 1950, the government passed the Agrarian Reform Law, which officially ended land ownership in China. All land and agricultural tools were to be evenly distributed among the landlords, rich peasants, and poor peasants. In reality, though, the enforcement of the law led to bitter trials in local rural communities. Poor peasants denounced the predatory practices of landlords and rich peasants. Most lost everything and many were executed. In 1953, the Chinese government entered a new stage of agrarian reform by collectivizing farms. In the first stage, peasants were required to help one another on their various plots of land. In the second stage, peasants were required to pool their tools, labor, and land, though they still retained rights over individual plots. In the third stage, completed in 1956, farms were completely collectivized under cooperative communities of farmers. By 1957, there were some 800,000 collective farms in China, each consisting of some six to seven hundred individual persons. Finally, in 1958, the social life of the country was transformed into communes. ”

Posted in China Fact, Cultural oddities | Leave a Comment »

Kung Fu Granny, or Simply Airing out the ol….

Posted by w_thames_the_d on July 14, 2010

This is downtown Beijing and that is a woman, a really old woman, probably 70 or so. but pretty flexible by the looks of it.

ps. You cannot see it, but this is directly across the street from the silk market which sells every fake good known to mankind.

Posted in Photos | Leave a Comment »

Voting in China

Posted by w_thames_the_d on July 14, 2010

Chinese life- “In 1953, voting rights were extended to all citizens over the age of eighteen except landlords and counterrevolutionaries.”
This is funny for a few reasons. Firstly, the landowners under Mao were stripped of their land and it was subsequently redistributed to the collective. Those people were also stripped of their right to vote. Today, it must be ironic to be a Chinese and see how the land was stolen from the wealthy not 50 years ago, and those one time uneducated peasant farmers are now the ruling elite. Under Mao, it is said, that the uneducated were the soul of China, thus the educated were scorned, beaten and at times offed. The other reason that this is humorous is that in China your vote doesnt matter, which is quite ironic in and of itself.

Posted in China Fact, Cultural oddities | 1 Comment »