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An American in China

Archive for March 28th, 2011

Neurotic China and Her Constituion

Posted by w_thames_the_d on March 28, 2011

This is interesting. I have attached the preambles to the constitutions of the USA, France and Spain. Aside from the fact that the civilized countries have much shorter preambles, and focus on the rights of the people als you can see that they are more poignant and focused on the future of the country while the Chinese constitution seems to show that it is mired in the past. In addition, listen to the militaristic rhetoric in the Chinese work and the neurosis of it’s wording(the following is an example -The Chinese people must fight against those forces and elements, both at home and abroad, that are hostile to China’s socialist system and try to undermine it. Taiwan is part of the sacred territory of the People’s Republic of China. It is the lofty duty of the entire Chinese people, including our compatriots in Taiwan, to accomplish the great task of reunifying the motherland). After reading the text of their document, I guess it is no wonder that they are somewhat brainwashed and embarrassed of their recent history.

We the People of the United States, in Order to form a more perfect Union, establish Justice, insure domestic Tranquility, provide for the common defence, promote the general Welfare, and secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our Posterity, do ordain and establish this Constitution for the United States of America.

The French people solemnly proclaim their attachment to the Rights of Man and the principles of national sovereignty as defined by the Declaration of 1789, confirmed and complemented by the Preamble to the Constitution of 1946, and to the rights and duties as defined in the Charter for the Environment of 2004.

By virtue of these principles and that of the self-determination of peoples, the Republic offers to the overseas territories which have expressed the will to adhere to them new institutions founded on the common ideal of liberty, equality and fraternity and conceived for the purpose of their democratic development.

Spanish Constitution

The Spanish Nation, wishing to establish justice, liberty and security, and to promote the welfare of all who make part of it, in use of her sovereignty, proclaims its will to: Guarantee democratic life within the Constitution and the laws according to a just economic and social order.Consolidate a State ensuring the rule of law as an expression of the will of the people.Protect all Spaniards and all the peoples of Spain in the exercise of human rights, their cultures and traditions, languages and institutions.Promote the progress of culture and the economy to ensure a dignified quality of life for allEstablish an advanced democratic society, andCollaborate in the strengthening of peaceful and efficient cooperation among all the peoples of the Earth.Consequently, the Cortes approve and the Spanish people ratify the following Constitution.


PREAMBLE China is one of the countries with the longest histories in the world. The people of all nationalities in China have jointly created a splendid culture and have a glorious revolutionary tradition. Feudal China was gradually reduced after 1840 to a semi-colonial and semi-feudal country. The Chinese people waged wave upon wave of heroic struggles for national independence and liberation and for democracy and freedom. Great and earth-shaking historical changes have taken place in China in the 20th century. The Revolution of 1911, led by Dr Sun Yat-sen, abolished the feudal monarchy and gave birth to the Republic of China. But the Chinese people had yet to fulfil their historical task of overthrowing imperialism and feudalism. After waging hard, protracted and tortuous struggles, armed and otherwise, the Chinese people of all nationalities led by the Communist Party of China with Chairman Mao Zedong as its leader ultimately, in 1949, overthrew the rule of imperialism, feudalism and bureaucrat capitalism, won the great victory of the new-democratic revolution and founded the People’s Republic of China. Thereupon the Chinese people took state power into their own hands and became masters of the country.

After the founding of the People’s Republic, the transition of Chinese society from a new- democratic to a socialist society was effected step by step. The socialist transformation of the private ownership of the means of production was completed, the system of exploitation of man by man eliminated and the socialist system established. The people’s democratic dictatorship led by the working class and based on the alliance of workers and peasants, which is in essence the dictatorship of the proletariat, has been consolidated and developed. The Chinese people and the Chinese People’s Liberation Army have thwarted aggression, sabotage and armed provocations by imperialists and hegemonists,safeguarded China’s national independence and security and strengthened its national defence. Major successes have been achieved in economic development. An independent and fairly comprehensive socialist system of industry has in the main been established. There has been a marked increase in agricultural production. Significant progress has been made in educational, scientific, cultural and other undertakings, and socialist ideological education has yielded noteworthy results. The living standards of the people have improved considerably. Both the victory of China’s new-democratic revolution and the successes of its socialist cause have been achieved by the Chinese people of all nationalities under the leadership of the Communist Party of China and the guidance of Marxism-Leninism and Mao Zedong Thought, and by upholding truth, correcting errors and overcoming numerous difficulties and hardships.

The basic task of the nation in the years to come is to concentrate its effort on socialist modernization. Under the leadership of the Communist Party of China and the guidance of Marxism- Leninism and Mao ZedongThought, the Chinese people of all nationalities will continue to adhere to the people’s democratic dictatorship and follow the socialist road, steadily improve socialist institutions, develop socialist democracy, improve the socialist legal system and work hard and self-reliantly to modernize industry, agriculture, national defence and science and technology step by step to turn China into a socialist country with a high level of culture and democracy. The exploiting classes as such have been eliminated in our country. However, class struggle will continue to exist within certain limits for a long time to come. The Chinese people must fight against those forces and elements, both at home and abroad, that are hostile to China’s socialist system and try to undermine it. Taiwan is part of the sacred territory of the People’s Republic of China. It is the lofty duty of the entire Chinese people, including our compatriots in Taiwan, to accomplish the great task of reunifying the motherland. In building socialism it is imperative to rely on the workers, peasants and intellectuals and unite with all the forces that can be united. In the long years of revolution and construction, there has been formed under the leadership of the Communist Party of China a broad patriotic united front that is composed of democratic parties and people’s organizations and embraces all socialist working people, all patriots who support socialism and all patriots who stand for reunification of the motherland. This united front will continue to be consolidated and developed. The Chinese People’s Political Consultative Conference is a broadly representative organization of the united front, which has played a significant historical role and will continue to do so in the political and social life of the country, in promoting friendship with the people of other countries and in the struggle for socialist modernization and for the reunification and unity of the country. The People’s Republic of China is a unitary multi-national state built up jointly by the people of all its nationalities. Socialist relations of equality, unity and mutual assistance have been established among them and will continue to be strengthened. In the struggle to safeguard the unity of the nationalities, it is necessary to combat big-nation chauvinism, mainly Han chauvinism, and also necessary to combat local-national chauvinism. The state does its utmost to promote the common prosperity of all nationalities in the country. China’s achievements in revolution and construction are inseparable from support by the people of the world. The future of China is closely linked with that of the whole world. China adheres to an independent foreign policy as well as to the five principles of mutual respect for sovereignty and territorial integrity, mutual non-aggression, non-interference in each other’s internal affairs, equality and mutual benefit, and peaceful coexistence in developing diplomatic relations and economic and cultural exchanges with other countries; China consistently opposes imperialism, hegemonism and colonialism, works to strengthen unity with the people of other countries, supports the oppressed nations and the developing countries in their just struggle to win and preserve national independence and develop their national economies, and strives to safeguard world peace and promote the cause of human progress. This Constitution affirms the achievements of the struggles of the Chinese people of all nationalities and defines the basic system and basic tasks of the state in legal form; it is the fundamental law of the state and has supreme legal authority. The people of all nationalities, all state organs, the armed forces, all political parties and public organizations and all enterprises and undertakings in the country must take the Constitution as the basic norm of conduct, and they have the duty to uphold the dignity of the Constitution and ensure its implementation.

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Reblog on Communism

Posted by w_thames_the_d on March 28, 2011

This post is a re-blog from weatheringthejourney.wordpress.com.
The part in italics is a story that she is referencing and then her comment below. The author (In non italics) has lived in China and I agree whole-heartedly with her assertion that I am skeptical to read anything about this place by someone reporting from, say- the Los Angeles desk, or New York. If you want to know China, you should live here.
The article the author references shows why weatheringthejourney is one of my favorite blogs. If you read the article, you will find a well-reasoned look at the realities of communism….

reblog from here
“Communism incubates corruption because it destroys morality. Everything is subsumed in the dialectic of class conflict. Freedom is extinguished. There is no accountability to God because there is no God. There is no violation of rights because there are no rights. There is no brotherhood of man because there is no stewardship to care for a neighbor.

I began reading this article with a great deal of skepticism. I can’t count the number of people who have tried to tell me all the virtues of China without acknowledging the one thing that ABSOLUTELY holds them back from fully interacting with the rest of the world – Communism. This man, Timothy Clark, really pegs it. winner-winner, chicken dinner :-)

Read the rest of the post here

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Tracking China’s Pollution Worldwide

Posted by w_thames_the_d on March 28, 2011

On her way to economic growth, China has been polluting the earth as well. See the photos below for a better understanding of how China is polluting the rest of the worl.d

from NASA Earth Observatory.

at this site

carbon monoxide moving east
This false-color image shows concentrations of carbon monoxide at an altitude of roughly 18,000 feet (500 millibars) in the atmosphere off the coast of Asia and out over the Pacific Ocean. This image represents a composite of data collected over a 20-day period, from January 1-20, 2003, by the Measurements Of Pollution In The Troposphere (MOPITT) instrument aboard NASA’s Terra satellite. The colors represent the mixing ratios of carbon monoxide in the air, given in parts per billion by volume. In this scene, values range from as high as 220 ppbv (purple pixels) to as low as 40 ppbv (blue pixels). The white areas show where no data were collected, either due to persistent cloud cover or gaps between viewing swaths.

During the early part of the year, there is considerable outflow of pollution from China and southeast Asia. Carbon monoxide is a good tracer of this pollution since it is produced by incomplete combustion processes such as the burning of fossil fuels in urban and industrial areas, the use of biofuels in developing countries, and by biomass burning in the tropics. The Asian plume can be followed as it propagates out over the Pacific Ocean, and in some instances this plume reaches the west coast of the United States. Over China, industrial emissions are mainly responsible for the high levels of carbon monoxide observed in the image. During the time these data were collected by MOPITT, other satellite sensors observed heavy, widespread particulate pollution over this region. Over southeast Asia, the high carbon monoxide levels coincide with satellite observations of fires in Thailand, Cambodia, and Vietnam. Caption and image from NASA Earth Observatory.

China smog moving over Kirea

Skies over China have darkened in the past five decades, thanks to a nine-fold increase fossil-fuel emissions. In January 2006, Yun Qian and collaborators reported this finding in Geophysical Research Letters. According to the Associated Press, Qian stated that pollution absorbs and reflects sunlight, allowing less of it to reach China’s urban areas.

The Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) flying onboard the Aqua satellite captured this image on January 27, 2006. In this image, a thick plume of smog makes its way across the Yellow Sea towards Korea. To the east, cloud cover can be discerned by its bright white appearance, compared to the pollution’s dingy gray. Caption and Image from NASA Earth Observatory.

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China and Taiwan

Posted by w_thames_the_d on March 28, 2011

From The Beijing Consensus- (Stefan Halper)

An equally important element in Chinese engagement with the developing world has been its diplomatic crusade to isolate Taiwan—an ally of the United States and one that Washington has pledged to defend, as detailed in the Taiwan Relations Act passed by Congress in 1979. The map of states that have shifted diplomatic relations from Taipei to Beijing in recent years further illustrates where China’s finance, trade, and investment have brought new influence. At the time of writing, the only African countries left that recognize Taiwan were Burkina Faso, Gambia, São Tomé and Príncipe, and Swaziland. This is not a new struggle. But recent years have seen a sharp decline in the number of countries that have diplomatic relations with Taiwan. The cause for the decline is simple: China’s artful application of checkbook diplomacy. In January 2008, Malawi announced it had cut diplomatic relations with Taiwan; Taipei couldn’t match the Chinese offer of $6 billion in aid.11 Malawi was the fourth country to break relations with Taiwan in three years. In a similar format, Senegal broke relations with Taiwan in October 2005, signing an agreement that reportedly included an initial $600 million in financial assistance from China.12 Chad followed suit the following year after a series of secret meetings with Chinese officials, for which the specific amounts involved were not revealed.13

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China’s Exploitation of Emerging Markets

Posted by w_thames_the_d on March 28, 2011

From The Beijing Consensus- (Stefan Halper)

Examples of the China effect enumerated in this chapter span several countries and regions. Yet, a majority of them have two elements in common: the presence of natural resources and the potential for new markets. But these are not the only benefits to China’s deepening penetration of developing markets. Its affinity for questionable neighborhoods and the eager friendship of pariah regimes help to serve other important objectives. As mentioned in the preface, evidence suggests that Chinese commercial engagement in fact does come with conditions of a kind, albeit limited and less invasive than Western stipulations for societal change. China consistently gleans support from its trading partners on a handful of key issues: human rights, Taiwan, Tibet, and sovereignty. Almost every time China establishes new commercial relations with a developing nation, the same formulaic communiqué is issued from Beijing. Two diplomats from their respective governments are photographed shaking hands in the Great Hall of the People. Underneath the photograph is an official description of various bilateral agreements for loans, aid, trade, and investment between China and its new commercial partner. While the statement is short, it finds space to iterate a new level of diplomatic cooperation. See China’s agreement with Ethiopia in November 2005, when Chinese Vice President Zeng Qinghong “expressed appreciation for Ethiopia’s adherence to the one-China policy and support for China’s unification cause”; or with the leader of Guinea, who, “hailing the close coordination in international affairs, he expressed gratitude for Guinea’s support on the Taiwan and Tibet issues”; or with Gabon, which “voiced support for China’s reunification” and “reiterated that there is only one China in the world, with the

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The Effect of China’s Pollution on The Rest of the World

Posted by w_thames_the_d on March 28, 2011

w.gifparticulate pollution

Optical depth of particulate pollution. Much of this pollution is industrial but some is caused by fires. NASA Image.

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China’s Problems in Africa

Posted by w_thames_the_d on March 28, 2011

From The Beijing Consensus- (Stefan Halper)
– Highlight Loc. 1419-24 | Added on Saturday, March 19, 2011, 10:23 PM

But as Senegalese journalist Adama Gaye remarks, China’s sudden interest has little to do with philanthropy.42 The Chinese footprint in Africa is yielding negative effects, with serious human costs that often far outweigh the benefits.43 Henning Melber, an Africanist at the Dag Hammarskjöld Foundation, argues that much of China’s presence in Africa is really just “old wine in new bottles.” After all, he comments, “the Chinese penetration only presents the ugly face of predatory capitalism, which for far too long has already abused the dependency of the majority on the continent.”44

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China and Ocean Contamination

Posted by w_thames_the_d on March 28, 2011

from here
China’s coastal waters are increasingly polluted by everything from oil to pesticides, contaminating the nation’s marine life including the shellfish supply, state press reported Friday.

Most shellfish in offshore areas contained “excessive harmful chemicals” such as lead, cadmium and the insecticide DDT, the China Daily said, citing a new report released by the State Oceanic Administration.

Levels of lead detected in shellfish were 50 percent higher than normal, while cadmium and DDT levels were about 40 percent higher, the report said.

Lead can damage the human nervous system and cause blood and brain disorders if consumed in unsafe amounts, while DDT is listed as a “moderately hazardous” pesticide by the World Health Organization.

The administration’s report said that about 147,000 square kilometres (59,000 square miles) of China’s coastal waters failed to meet standards for “clear water” last year, an increase of 7.3 percent over 2008.

China’s coastal waters last year suffered 68 red tides, or algae blooms, caused by excessive sewage in the water that affected 14,100 square kilometres, 3.4 times the area affected by such blooms in the 1990s, the report said.

China’s fast-paced economic growth was resulting in more industrial and domestic garbage being dumped into the sea, it added.

Following 30 years of explosive growth, China’s is on track to overtake Japan as the world’s second-largest economy, but that success has made it one of the most polluted nations in the world.

“Our environmental quality is only improving in certain areas, but overall the environment is still deteriorating,” Vice Minister of Environmental Protection Zhang Lijun told journalists this week.

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Funny Chinese Sign

Posted by w_thames_the_d on March 28, 2011


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400,000 People Register to Get Lisence Plates in Beijing This Month

Posted by w_thames_the_d on March 28, 2011

Beijing was built for fat little emperors who were toted around on rickshaws, not autos. Thus, a big problem in Bejing is all the cars on the road now. Currently, if you want to get a car in Beijing, you have to join a lottery and hope you get one. This month that lottery includes almost 400,000 other people.

excerpt peopledaily.com:
A total of 397,543 qualified candidates took part in the city’s third license-plate lottery, which was held this month, according to figures released by the Beijing municipal commission of transport on Friday. The participants will compete in a draw on Saturday for the right to obtain one of 17,600 license plates Beijing issues each month.

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