Archive for July, 2008

Friday, July 25, 2008

Scientific: How Chinese Grammar compromises Chinese Public Relations


No fun in the Indian countryside

No fun in the Indian countryside

(Draft for a Children’s TV program)

 Parental Guidance is advised, as this program may contain some disturbing images.

Hello Children, it’s Hermit, the Taoist Dragonfly again. Today, I’m going to tell you what went wrong with the Sacred-Torch Show and Tibet. But to help you better understand, I will show you first what is happening in India. Most farmers there are poor, and they get some extra **** from their local governments and landlords. So, take a look at the India countryside… (Hermit clicks on his notebook, and a map of India appears.)

No fun in the Indian countryside, children.

Now let’s look at Tibet. It takes three slides to understand the whole problem. (Hermit clicks again.)

Tibet Slide 1

Tibet Slide 1

Tibet Slide 2

Tibet Slide 2

Tibet Slide 3

Tibet Slide 3

No fun in Tibet either, children.

And next, a Chinese government spokesman or woman says: “56 nationalities are living happily together in China”.

Understandably, the rest of the world, looking at this mess, feels bullshitted by the Chinese government spokesman or woman. Who likes to be bullshitted? Who wouldn’t want to show these losers that they can’t bullshit the rest of the world that easily?

Meantime, the media in India report on the way corrupt officials and landlords squeeze the indian peasants. That doesn’t change the sad lot of India’s poor and powerless, but at least Indians don’t say that corrupt officials, **** landlords, and poor farmers, are living happily together. Not even a government spokeswoman or man says that. And noone in the rest of the world feels bullshitted by India. Besides, even if some anti-India snakeghosts would want to spoil an Indian Sacred-Torch Show, there is none anyway. The world is adhering to the One-Torch policy (which is the Chinese Torch, of course).

Now, but why this bullshit? The answer is simple, children. The problem is that Chinese language doesn’t know a conditional tense. Of course, Chinese government spokespeople know the conditional tense in theory, because they can speak English. But they only know it in theory. They can’t say “If we had a decent Tibet (and Xinjiang) policy, 56 nationalities would live happily together.” They can’t even think that.

Same with the future tense. They can’t say “Once we have found a decent policy on Tibet (and Xinjiang), 56 nationalities will live happily together.” They can’t even think that. All they can say is “Han Zang Yi Jia”, which means “Han Tibetan one Family”.

The way they can combine verbs with the present tense is also limited. They can say things like “You commit heinous crimes” or “You make a serious mistake”. But they can’t say “We commit heinous crimes” or “We make serious mistakes”.

Some combinations simply don’t work in Chinese, and every limit on your language is also a limit on your imagination. No language course and no studies abroad can change that.

So, dear children, next time before you even think of committing heinous crimes against the Chinese Sacred Torch, think of this, and be a bit more understanding, OK? A Han’s life isn’t easy either.

Got to fly now.

Thursday, July 24, 2008

Understand the Language of your Enemies and have a Word with Them

That's understood

That's understood

Senator John McCain, November/December 2007:
“Today, understanding foreign cultures is not a luxury but a strategic necessity. As president, I will launch a crash program in civilian and military schools to prepare more experts in critical languages such as Arabic, Chinese, Farsi, and Pashto. Students at our service academies should be required to study abroad. I will enlarge the military’s Foreign Area Officer program and create a new specialty in strategic interrogation in order to produce more interrogators who can obtain critical knowledge from detainees by using advanced psychological techniques, rather than the kind of abusive tactics properly prohibited by the Geneva Conventions.”

That’s how to have an informative chat with your enemies. But where is the place for obtaining knowledge from people who aren’t your enemies, but slightly revanchist?

Not the G8 anyway, says Senator McCain. Not if is “this revanchist Russia”.

Sunday, July 20, 2008

Forced Evictions in Shandong Province, Weifang City

The video starts with a reference to China’s property law that was passed in 2007 to protect the rights of – among others – home owners. But in Shandong, Weifang City, Kuiwen District (潍坊市奎文区), the video says, many people lost their homes while being beaten and cursed: the head of the village, reportedly a man named Gao Zhigang (高志刚), wanted to demolish a number of homes, but hadn’t come to agreement with many owners, and with some help from gangs, he seems to be making steady progress now. The video shows the maltreatment of a rural family on May 28. The video includes violence.

According to the BBC’s China correspondent’s blog, they went there and verified some of the information given by the video. Obviously, they didn’t find wide-open doors in the neighbourhood when doing their research. Still, they got some characteristic information: “Of course, we’re scared.”

Saturday, July 19, 2008

July 20 – Military Ceremony in front of the Berlin Reichstag

The Berlin Borough Mitte (Central) had originally declined a request by the Bundeswehr (German Military) to authorise a public military ceremony on July 20 in front of the Reichstag – the building that houses the German federal parliament. The ceremony in which recruits regularly vow to defend the law and the freedom of the German people takes place in lots of different places, sometimes on military sites, sometimes semi-publicly. The Borough had cited technical and judicial reasons for rejecting the request. Obviously, especially conservative politicians didn’t buy that, and members of the forces seemed to be irritated, too.

The Borough department in charge is the parks and gardens office. I’m no pacifist, but I liked the Borough’s approach. I see no reason to hide the military, but I see no reason why it should essentially be paraded in front of the Reichstag either. Bernd Siebert, speaker for defense policies in the federal parliament’s conservative CDU/CSU faction, makes a point that is worth listening to as to why he thinks the Reichstag building is an adequate place for the ceremony. July 20 is the day when some high-ranking military and civilians tried to assassinate Hitler in 1944.

The problem is that Conservatives would be way too “proud” of the army once a good share of the public didn’t look at defense policies as critically as it does. One of the reasons for the Mitte Borough not to approve the ceremony was that it objected to a related request by the military for police / road blocks around the place – i. e. to handpick the audience at the ceremony, for fear of (pretty likely) demonstrations. It is the public that requires politicians (including conservatives) to make a convincing case for the existence and role of the military. The Borough said that according to an existing ruling by an administrative court, road blocks as extensive as requested were not legal.

On July 11 however, the Borough and defense ministry did agree on a ceremony in front of the Reichstag, after they found a compromise on the road blocks, which are now to be in effect only on July 20 itself, from noon. To me, it looks like if the Borough has given in, and only got some face-saving concessions from the federal level and the military.

I don’t like the decision. I was in the army myself, and that’s exactly why I prefer such ceremonies to happen on military sites. The whole stuff about the Reichstag as a site for it wasn’t about defense. In my books, it was an opportunity for the MIC to show that they make the decisions.

I wasn’t in the army to serve the MIC. But I guess I would die for the Mitte Borough’s parks and gardens office.

Friday, July 18, 2008

Navy Political Commanders: Top Level Changes

“The Chinese Navy sees a series of top-level changes. Political Commissar General [general rather than admiral] Hu Yanlin (胡彦林) retires and will be succeeded by his deputy Liu Xiaojiang (刘晓江). At the same time, Naval Political Department director Fan Yinhua (范印华) becomes deputy political commissar. Xu Jianzhong (徐建中), deputy political commissar of Nanjing Military Region and political commissar of the East China Sea Fleet, succeeds Fan as director of the Naval Political Department. The changes were announced the other day by Guo Boxiong (郭伯雄), deputy chairman of the Central Military Commission, on a special trip to the Navy.” Source: Lianhe Zaobao (联合早报), Singapore, July 18.

Central Military Commission may refer to either the State CMC, or to the Party CMC. But there is no need for confusion – both commissions are identical in membership. The function of a political commissar is described here.

Previous Changes (during and after 17th Congress, according to

Thursday, July 17, 2008

Ma Ying-jeou: no politician can force people to choose unification

Asked in an interview with German’s Süddeutsche Zeitung (Southern German Times) on July 12 if he opposed unification, Taiwan’s president Ma Ying-jeou said he was a pure pragmatist. Opinion polls showed that most Taiwanese wanted to maintain the status quo, that they favored neither independence nor unification. “If they are not interested in political unification with the mainland, there is no politician who can force them.” [我是单纯的务实主义者 (…..) 如果他们对与大陆在政治上统一不感兴趣,没有任何政治人物能够强迫他们.]  To maintain Taiwan’s current status was both in Taiwan’s and mainland China’s interest.

Reading the interview requires registration on the Sueddeutsche Zeitung’s website. The above info and quotes are from the Overseas Chinese “Europe Journal” (欧洲日报), Paris, of July 16. Some info can also be found on Central News Agency online.

An Taipei Times article by Chai Trong-Rong (DPP): “Vigilance needed on Ma and unification”

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Scientific History: The invention of the Sacred Olympic Fire

(Draft for a children’s TV programme)

Hello ChildrenHello Children. This is Hermit, the Taoist Dragonfly again, with your daily dose of scientific history. And our topic today is: Oh shit, I forgot! (Hermit clicks on a notebook, and nothing happens.)

OK, children. Anyway. Once upon a time, the world was dark, cold, hostile, and in chaos. Everywhere except in our Middle Kingdom of course. But after our great first Emperors had reigned in on the floods and invented agriculture, fire, house-building and plastic surgery, they sent a fleet around the world that had a look if all humankind was fine. Because our emperors were very kind and cared for the progress of all of human kind, just as Uncle Wen does now. They weren’t like those Western devils of nowadays who don’t want to see China rise for the good of the whole world again, and who therefore caused trouble to the Sacred Torch.

Ah, now I’ve accidentally found it. That’s our topic today indeed, children. Now, do you know what a Greek gift is? Right. A Greek gift is what the foreign devils have given to us when the IOC took the Chinese Olympics to China – hehe. But talking about Greek stuff, did you know that there are people who think that the Olympic Games were invented in Greece ?

(Hermit frowns and shakes his head.)

Sacred Torch outside

Sacred Torch outside

Now, I hope you are smarter than those people. But if not, this is your chance to learn something. Look at it. This is what the idiots of the world think of as a Greek Sacred Olympic Torch. (Hermit hits at his notebook again, and finally, a picture appears.)

Now, children. This looks pretty Greek, right? But it only looks Greek because we Chinese (Han Chinese, Taoist Dragonfly Chinese and national minorities) are very modest and never get noisy about our inventions.

This is only for your reference if you study overseas later (don’t forget to bookmark this important information!), and some stupid Laowai tries to make you believe that sacred torches are Western inventions. If that happens, just show the inflated, arrogant Laowai what is inside the sacred torch:

Sacred Torch inside

Sacred Torch inside

Yes – Chinese technology. Now we all know. This is a Sacred Torch from Wenzhou. About 70% of the world’s sacred torches (made of metal) are made there. And no try of the Laowais to play foul will ever change that. **** them.

Got to fly now. Stay patriotic.

Monday, July 14, 2008

Watch out!

Watch out, prosecutors! It is pretty dangerous to seek the arrest of a man with such a big bird on his executive chair!

(Story: “Sudan war crime charges expected“.)

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