Understanding China, One Blog at a Time

An American in China

Archive for February 12th, 2011

Chinese Picture from 2009

Posted by w_thames_the_d on February 12, 2011


This is a shot from days before the 60th anniversary of China’s communist party. The cops were guarding the route that the military would take.

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Typical Chinese Street

Posted by w_thames_the_d on February 12, 2011


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Lawless China

Posted by w_thames_the_d on February 12, 2011


This truly describes how China is, especially the laws.

Excerpt from “Looking for Law in China”- Stanley Lubman
“…While there is a lack of eagerness to promote reform from above, there are signs that from below, from Chinese society itself, citizens’ attitudes toward the law are evolving. I offer an illustration from my own experience: For over 35 years I have been traveling to China, and when I tell Chinese that I have been specializing in Chinese law for over 40 years, they often laugh because they think there is little to study. One day I had that kind of conversation with a taxi driver, who repeatedly exclaimed, “We don’t have any real law.” Our discussion continued during a lengthy ride to China’s largest law school, and when we reached my destination, I asked him to wait while I went inside. When I returned to the taxi, he remarked that I had been gone a long time, more than an hour. When I reminded him that I had told him I would be gone that long, he said, “Yes, I knew I would have to wait, that’s not a problem. My question is, since our country has so little law, how could you find enough to talk about for an hour?” We continued to talk, and at one point he said, “You don’t understand. Do you know about campaigns?” Yes, I said; there were often campaigns to enforce specific laws more strictly. “No,” he said, “you still don’t understand. I am a taxi driver. If I steal from my company I should be punished. This month, the month of March, there is a ‘Strike Hard’ campaign going on to punish crime heavily. If I stole in February, before the campaign, I would have received a certain punishment. But if I steal this month, I would be punished more severely. That’s not fair. The law should be the same in March as it is in February.” This taxi driver understood some basic concepts of the rule of law, and I have heard his sentiments echoed by many other ordinary citizens. Peasants and workers who have increasingly protested against arbitrary official behavior in recent years have often invoked published laws as the basis for their protests. Some Chinese legal scholars, officials and intellectuals have called for a truly national and autonomous judiciary that applies standards of procedural fairness. Some businesses in the nonstate sector desire stronger protection of their transactions and property through rules enforced meaningfully and consistently by the power of the Chinese state. The Chinese media often discusses significant court cases and issues related to the law; there are also considerable influences from abroad conveyed by the foreign and domestic media, the Internet, and foreigners doing business. “

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Snowy Beijing

Posted by w_thames_the_d on February 12, 2011


Once again Beijing has had snow and its non too soon. We had broken the record for the longest period without it and the locals were getting nervous. The reason is that Beijing is running out of water and without more precipitation, its only getting more serious. Later I will upload pics

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Chinese Apartment

Posted by w_thames_the_d on February 12, 2011


Apartment complex in Beijing. I once lived near this place.

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China Pic

Posted by w_thames_the_d on February 12, 2011


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Chinese Civility and Subways

Posted by w_thames_the_d on February 12, 2011


Friday I was on the subway as usual and aside from the villagers returning to the city with their huge bags, the thing was filled with much more “civil folks”. One such guy was decked out in his best fake Polo shirt beneath a faux Addidas jacket. In front of the guy were probably half a dozen villagers inside the door as the car was packed to the brim. The guy got a running start and elbowed his way in, swinging his tiny fists like a Bowery street brawler. Upon entering he turned to the side and spotted me, a foreigner. Embarrassed he turned his eyes away and we rode on. At the next stop, Chinese, being Chinese pushed, shoved, and cursed as they plunged into the maws of the subway car. This guy who not seconds before had been clawing savagely in order to get in, now rolled his eyes at his Chinese brethren and their uncivil behavior. Looking at me he sighed and uttered, “Oh my gawd”. and shook his head disdainfully.

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Doing Business in China

Posted by w_thames_the_d on February 12, 2011


Excerpt from Stanley Lubman- Looking for Law in China

“One experienced and thoughtful observer of foreign business in China has concluded, “[t]he sad fact is that the Chinese system today is almost incompatible with honesty” because the CCP wants to keep the party’s ruling elite above the law “unless their behavior or party politics necessitate making an example of them.” At the same time, although he describes rampant corruption, he also notes that large multinationals “can operate above the muck because their deals are often very large, very visible, and they are interacting with senior government and party officials.” Below that level, he says, “China becomes a swamp” and he singles out American companies for using middlemen to avoid the FCPA, although using middlemen does not avoid the impact of the Act. And yet, as cynical as his discussion becomes, he also adds that “[a]s China becomes more wealthy and sophisticated, it is getting easier to avoid corruption. There are many foreign companies that have policies of zero tolerance for corruption in China, and still enjoy good business because their products are the best and in demand.”

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Chinese Civility and Subways

Posted by w_thames_the_d on February 12, 2011


Friday I was on the subway as usual and aside from the villagers returning to the city with their huge bags, the thing was filled with much more “civil folks”. One such guy was decked out in his best fake Polo shirt beneath a faux Addidas jacket. In front of the guy were probably half a dozen villagers inside the door as the car was packed to the brim. The guy got a running start and elbowed his way in, swinging his tiny fists like a Bowery street brawler. Upon entering he turned to the side and spotted me, a foreigner. Embarrassed he turned his eyes away and we rode on. At the next stop, Chinese, being Chinese pushed, shoved, and cursed as they plunged into the maws of the subway car. This guy who not seconds before had been clawing savagely in order to get in, now rolled his eyes at his Chinese brethren and their uncivil behavior. Looking at me he sighed and uttered, “Oh my gawd”. and shook his head disdainfully.

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Street Haircut in China

Posted by w_thames_the_d on February 12, 2011


This guy cuts hair on the sidewalk in Beijing. The guy charges about 70 cents or so for the privilege.

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