Understanding China, One Blog at a Time

An American in China

Archive for October 17th, 2010

Beijing Smog Watch July 15-21, 2010- Pollution in China.

Posted by w_thames_the_d on October 17, 2010


This is my attempt to show the effects of pollution in the Beijing air. I have been taking these photos since the beginning of the year and try to show how the smog denigrates the air on a daily basis. I try to take the photos at the same time of day. These shots are taken facing west and a little south. I use my cell phone cam, its a 3.2 mp, Nokia e-71. I dont retouch the photos, merely take them and then upload them. You can go through the blog to compare the various days and see the difference in the level of smog. Typically in Beijing the pollution is much worse in the summer. I am late on uploading these photos but will probably upload quite a few in the following days.

Posted in Beijing Smog, Beijing Smog- Daily pics, Photos | Leave a Comment »

Comm.unist Control in China

Posted by w_thames_the_d on October 17, 2010


I’m reading a great book about the secretive Chinese communist Party. The book is called The Party: The Secret World of China’s Communist Rulers by Richard Mcgregor, and is great. I am reading it on my Kindle (an awesome device) and can download what I have highlighted. Here are a few interesting things, however:
-it states that the Chinese communist party has no official website, and I have found none, the first thing listed on Google is something from the China daily website with the usual bs. So that is odd, does this mean that a political body which has over 70,000,000 members and represents the people of over 20% of the entire world has no website in the year 2010?
-in 2005 in China, if one searched for the word ‘democracy in China’ the result was “jplease delete forbidden speach from this item”
-in 2005 however, the government of China presented a white paper calling democracy in China to be “The Chinese communist party governing on behalf of the people.” hmmm , Merriam Webster describes democracy as “a : government by the people; especially : rule of the majority b : a government in which the supreme power is vested in the people and exercised by them directly or indirectly through a system of representation usually involving periodically held free elections “… maybe the chicoms did the thing that this country does well and pirated the word but left out its true essence…
-according to the book when the author asked a teacher at the Chinese communist party school (yeah it really exists) why they had no offical website, the guy named Lu Weidong said, “its redundant…All of the important media in China is controlled by the (communist ) party , so we have no need for a website.

The book is great and as China rises it is a pretty good read to see what we are getting ourselves into with China.

Posted in Big brother..., China, Cultural oddities, Let me educate you... | Leave a Comment »

Starbucks Prices

Posted by w_thames_the_d on October 17, 2010


I love Starbucks, but moreso in the USA than China. I dont know if I blogged this since coming back, but I compared prices of certain goods in China and the US. A tall hazel nut lattee at Starbucks in China is about US 5.75, a gollon of milk is about U$ 5.00 for the good stuff, McDonalds is comparable, and Subway may cost a bit more back home. A can of Coke is about U$ 0.60. (these are Beijing prices)

Posted in China Fact, Working and Living in China | 1 Comment »