Archive for July, 2018

Friday, July 27, 2018

Sports, Meeting the Bad Guys

Once she was the richest woman in Xinjiang, having amassed a fortune trading commodities with neighboring Central Asian countries and owning Urumqi’s largest department store.

Officials would bring foreign visitors to meet her, as living refutation of Uighurs’ complaints that Chinese policies relegated them to second-class citizenship.

That’s how the Christian Science Monitor described the earlier life of Rebiya Kadeer, in summer 2009. Then, the article moved on to her later years in East Turkestan and China – her fall from grace, her arrest, and her term in jail during the early 2000s.

Her story came to my mind when Mesut Özil, a player for Arsenal and a German citizen, resigned from Germany’s “national team” on Sunday, i. e. from the German Football Association’s (DFB) top team that vies for the FIFA World Cups or at the UEFA European Championships every four years respectively.

Özil, approaching his 30th birthday this year, has been a star in Germany for most of the past decade. There have also been derogatory remarks about him in the past, and a right-wing politician called Özil a “plastic German” live on television, referring to the synthetic material covering German identity cards. But Özil’s career developed unobstructedly. So did his public image.

Özil was born as a Turkish citizen, in the German town of Gelsenkirchen. He took German citizenship in 2007, and if the few statements he publicly made are something to go by, he probably considers himself a citizen of the world.

Kadeer was reportedly on her way to meet a politician in Urumqi when she was arrested, in 1999. The politician was a bad guy – an American.

Özil met a politician at Arsenal in London earlier this year. The politician was a bad guy, too – the Turkish president.

Obviously, there are differences between the American bad guy and the Turkish bad guy. The American politician was a bad guy because he cared about human rights. The Turkish president is a bad guy because he gives a damn on human rights, and on the rule of law.

But this is where Özil’s fall from grace began. It’s in the nature of the sport that he was known way beyond the world of soccer, Germany’s number one sport. He was sold – by the DFB and by German politics – as a shining example of “integration”, the incorporation of migrants into German society.

That was weird, given that he had lived in Germany from day one of his life anyway, but propaganda doesn’t have to be accurate. It is meant to tie the nation together, rather than to inform it. And for about a decade, the message seemed to work for the cause of social cohesion.

Soccer doesn’t breed the most civil interaction, certainly not among the fan base. And it isn’t the best ground for decent standards on the level of business operations either. To demand that people who make millions from playing soccer should be “role models” is an excessive demand – no matter if they are made on foreigners or compatriots, migrants or Mayflower descendants (or whatever their German equivalents may be). If things go well, you won’t get into public-relations trouble. But it can easily happen. It is currently happening to the DFB president, Reinhard Grindel, too, because much of Özil’s criticism in his letter of resignation was targeted at him, and while the press is critical of the accusations in Özil’s letter of resignation, the DFB is criticized mercilessly – for “racism” by some, for chaotic management by many.

Özil’s preparedness to meet Turkish president Erdogan for a photo op was read as an endorsement for the campaigning politician by many in Germany, and probably by some Turkish voters, too. His explanation that it wasn’t meant to be an endorsement, but just a show of respect for the presidential office, didn’t convince the German public.

But why did he have to seek excuses at all? The world of sports isn’t about human rights – not even when it comes to safety standards. And did Jacques Rogge have to apologize for meeting Hu Jintao? Not really.

Did Lothar Matthäus have to explain why he had been sitting next to Hungarian prime minister Viktor Orbán when the country’s political leader opened a soccer stadium? Neither.

Socializing with unpleasant political leaders, and making yourself useful (or making them useful to yourself, or both) is an important element of “professional sports” – if you  can’t put up with it, change it, or stop being a fan. But don’t beam your anger on a few guys in particular.

Is there a moral to this story? Maybe it is a lesson about the dangers of propaganda. For most of the past decade, Özil fitted well into collective German ego-boosting. Now, sudden new fans use his image to agitate their audiences.

Don’t hold your breath for role models in sports. Once in a while, there may be some – maybe Muhammad Ali became one, in the course of many decades. But usually, some of a person’s action (or inaction) may be admirable, some other may be detestable.

Hundreds of sports officials, and thousands of cadres, have proven by their behavior that commercial sports isn’t doing embroidery.

That said, it isn’t writing essays, either.

Friday, July 27, 2018

Trade War: “American Farmers whine about Hardships”

When Russia stopped the import of agricultural products from the EU in late summer of 2014, reacting to the West’s sanctions against the Russian economy in the wake of the annexation of Crimea, the EU pledged 125 million Euros to support the affected farmers. European agricultural exports to Russia had been worth about 11.8 billion euros last year, or roughly $15.7 billion, the New York Times quoted Eurostat at the time, or ten percent of European agricultural trade.

On Tuesday this week, Donald Trump announced a plan that would provide US farmers with $12 billion, to lighten the effects of tarriffs imposed by China and the European Union, in retaliation to earlier US tarriff hikes. Politico quoted US agriculture secretary Sonny Perdue as saying that the $12 bn would be a match for “roughly $11 billion in negative effects that USDA has calculated agricultural producers have suffered as a result of “illegal” retaliatory tariffs imposed by China, Canada, Mexico, the European Union and other major economies.” Apart from direct payments to farmers, a purchasing program and support for farmers looking out for new markets are reportedly part of the plan.

Politico also quotes Republican lawmakers – and farmers – as criticising the program, and demanding an end to the trade war. However, an NBC correspondent points out that the Trump administration’s support programs makes sense for Republican Congress people who would otherwise face “the treacherous choice of letting farmers suffer or criticizing a president who is immensely popular among their constituents.”

Guanchazhe , a paper from Shanghai, posted a report on its website today, recalling that

In spite of opposing voices at home, the Trump administration added 25 percent to import tarriffs on Chinese goods at a value of $34 billion*), from the beginning of July. In reaction, China imposed 25 percent of import tarriffs on the same scale of American products, including American agricultural products.

不顾国内反对声音,特朗普政府于本月初对价值340亿美元的中国商品加征25%的进口关税。作为反击,中国于同日对同等规模的美国产品加征25%的进口关税,美国农产品被列入征税清单。

Guanchazhe suggests that

Trump appears to have recognized that it is exactly the trade clash provoked by him that has shocked the farmers. According to earlier Guanchazhe Network reports, on July 24 local time, the American agriculture secretary announced the biggest emergency assistance plan for farmers since 1998, with a total of $12 billion, to help the farmers to avoid losses.

特朗普似乎意识到了正是自己挑起的贸易冲突,使得农民受到冲击。据观察者网此前报道,当地时间24日,美国农业部公布了一项1998年以来规模最大的农业紧急援助计划,金额为120亿美元,以帮助农民免受损失。

Guanchazhe then quotes Chinese foreign ministry spokesman Geng Shuang as saying that China was a major buyer of American agricultural goods: “For many years, Sino-American agricultural cooperation has continuously broadened, it has deepened by the day, with honest mutual benefits. One should say that it is mutually beneficial and mutually profitable” (多年来,中美农业合作不断扩大,日益深化,给双方带来了实实在在的利益,应该说是互利共赢的). Currently however, it was America that was “adopting unilateralism and trade protectionism, going back on its words (言而无信) and contradicting itself (出尔反尔), insistently provoking a trade war against China.” Geng is also quoted as saying that the American farmers were “paying the bill for the American government’s bullying.”

Trump provokes a trade clash with one hand, the article says, and

as other countries are forced to strike back, he now wants to placate the farmers with an emergency assistance plan, plus peddling words on social media about how he likes and values the farmers and about attacking China – will American farmers buy this?

现在想通过紧急援助来安抚美国农民,另一边又在社交媒体上兜售对农民“爱与尊重”的说辞,攻击中国,美国农民会买账吗?

The article quotes two farmers by name, both of them with rather balances statements that emphasize the need for long-term solutions and maintaining their market positions, but without criticizing Trump.

All the same, the two measured statements are lumped together with Nebraska Senator Ben Sasse‘s criticism that the assistance program was about “gold crutches”. The article then moves on to July 25:

According to Reuters, on July 25 local time, Trump met Congress members from agricultural states to discuss trade issues. House agricultural committee chairman Mike Conaway thanked the government for the assistant measures, and lauded the agreement Trump had reached with visiting EU Commission president Jean-Claude Juncker earlier that day to eliminate trade barriers.

据路透社报道,当地时间25日,特朗普会见了农业州国会议员,共商贸易课题。众议院农业委员会主席科纳韦(Mike Conaway)感谢政府为农民推出的援助措施,并赞许特朗普当天较早前接见到访的欧盟委员会主席容克时,与对方达成协议,争取消除贸易壁垒。

Conaway issued a statement saying that “I’m thanking the President and Secretary Perdue for supporting our farmers and ranchers.”

科纳韦发布声明说:“我感谢总统和珀杜(农业)部长给予我们的农民和牧场主的支持。”

However, Lisa Murkowski, Republican senator for Alaska, tweeted that Trump needed “to recognize that trade assistance can’t replace actual trade.”

不过,阿拉斯加州共和党参议员穆尔科斯基(Lisa Murkowski)在推特发文呼吁特朗普,“认清贸易援助是无法取代贸易本身”。

While the article avoids strong language, the editorial department apparently chose to create more appealing impressions: American farmers whine about hardships, Trump falsely accuses China of ‘malignance’ (贸易战美国农民叫苦 特朗普反诬中国“恶毒”).

According to English-language reports, Trump referred to China’s tarriffs on US agricultural goods as “vicious”, and according to a report by Reuters on Wednesday, Murkowski urged Trump on Twitter to “recognize that trade assistance is no substitute for trade itself.”

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Notes

*) In other reports at the time, trade volumes of $50 billion were mentioned

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Related

FMPRC Regular Press Conference, July 26, 2018
外交部例行记者会, FMPRC, July 26, 2018
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Tuesday, July 10, 2018

Welcome

link

Wednesday, July 4, 2018

The Heroes’ Hero – a newsitem and a background story

 

1. KCNA News

English Chinese
Pyongyang, July 3 (KCNA) — A delegation of the China Dongfangyi Tuozhan Association led by Chairman Guo Yi arrived here on Tuesday. -0- 朝中社平壤7月3日电 中国东方毅拓展文化协会会长向朝鲜最高领导人金正恩赠送了礼物。正在率团访问的中国东方毅拓展文化协会会长过毅3日向有关部门干部转达了礼物。(完)
Source: KCNA, July 3, 2018

 

2. Baidu/Baike online encyclopedia

Baike-Baidu – click picture for source

Main Link: Dong Fangyi Introduction, Baidu/Baike, accessed July 4. 2018

Dong Fangyi, originally named Guo Yi, non-governmental strategist, Tuozhan Cultural Association’s president, and actually in control of FGC Group. Main writing is “Hero Master and Expansion”. Born in He County, Anhui Province, in 1962. He County is situated in central Anhui Province, the place where Xiang Yu of Western Chu committed suicide.

东方毅,原名过毅,中国民间政略家、拓展文化协会会长、未来集团实际控制人。主要著作有《雄主与拓展》。
1962 出生于安徽省和县。和县位于安徽省中部,西楚霸王项羽自刎之地。

His father is/was a Resist US Help North Korea soldier.  After demobilization, he stayed in the Great Northern Wilderness. Growing up with his father in Raohe County, Heilongjiang Province (the county where Zhenbao Island is located), the land reclamation of the Great Northern Wilderness, the military and forest environment, military people, and the iron will of demobilized servicemen had a profound influence on him. Under the influence of his parents’ generation, he acquired a belief that loved the party and the country.

父亲是抗美援朝的军人,复员后留驻北大荒。从小随父亲在黑龙江饶河县(珍宝岛所在县)长大,北大荒的军垦、军林环境,军人、复转军人的钢铁意志,对其产生了深远的影响。在父辈的熏陶下,从小树立了爱党爱国的信念。

In 1982, after graduating from the Changchun Institute of Geology, he went to northern Shaanxi to work there for many years. He has deep feelings for the motherland’s north-western region. Since childhood, Dong Fangyi has loved learning, diligently thinking, he has become good at strategy, continuously learned the Mao Zedong Thought, and studied Chinese history, especially the Spring and Autumn and Warring States history, the history of the CCP, as well as the Resist US Help North Korea and the Resist US Help Vietnam records. His process of thinking has been influenced by Mao Zedong Thought and China’s outstanding traditional culture, notably legalism.

1982年,从长春地质学院毕业后,赴陕北、大西北工作多年。对祖国的西北地区有着深厚的感情。
东方毅自幼爱好学习,勤于思考,善于谋略,不停的学习毛泽东思想,学习中国历史尤其是春秋战国史,学习中共党史,抗美援朝与抗美援越纪实。思想历程深受毛泽东思想和中国优秀传统文化特别是法家思想的影响。

The Baidu/Baike article drops a number of names: Marx, Engels, Lenin, Stalin, Mao Zedong, Zhou Enlai, Kim Il Sung, Ho Chi Minh, Kim Jong Il, Castro, Che Guevara, Li Kenong, Jiang Zhuyu, Huang Jiguang, Qiu Shaoyun, Wang Wei (马克思、恩格斯、列宁、斯大林、毛泽东、周恩来、金日成、胡志明、金正日、卡斯特罗、切·格瓦拉、李克农、江竹筠、黄继光、邱少云、王伟), and then moves on to Dong’s current status and activities, i. e. to the expansion of cultural thought (拓展文化思想), and his determination to disseminate and internationalize the expansion of Chinese culture (自此立志传播中华拓展文化并使其国际化), his dedication to the cause of Chinese great unification (立志献身中华大一统事业), to striking back at new cultural imperialism (反击新文化帝国主义), with never-ending persistence (literally: no remorse after going through nine deaths, 九死不悔).

经过多年亲身的实践整合,东方毅始创了拓展文化思想。自此立志传播中华拓展文化并使其国际化,立志献身中华大一统事业,反击新文化帝国主义,九死不悔!

If it hasn’t come to the reader’s mind so far that the personality himself, or his fans, have built a encyclopedic monument here, this is where the idea occurs to this blogger.

Expansionism is a wonderful integration of Marxism-Lenism, Mao Zedong Thought and Chinese culture. An expanding spirit is a powerful spiritual force for rescue in a chaotic international world, making people re-establish three beliefs: in the goal of Great Unity, trust in our central authorities, and trust in our country. Regaining confidence in the future.

拓展主义是马列主义、毛泽东思想和中华文化的奇妙综合,拓展精神是拯救混乱的国际世界的强大精神力量,使人们重建三信:信仰大同目标,信任我们的中央,信任我们的国家。重拾对前途的信心。

To disseminate and to implement the China expansion cultural thought, Dong Fangyi has, since 80s of the past century, established the Future Group [FGC Group, see first para of this Baidu translation] and the Dong Fangyi Tuozhan Cultural Company (东方毅拓展文化公司), to broadly enforce talented people in society, and to lead them to strive untiringly for the cause of Chinese expansion!

为了能更好地传播和践行中华拓展文化思想,东方毅从上世纪八十年代起先后创建了未来集团和东方毅拓展文化公司,广纳社会英才,并带领他们为中华拓展事业不懈奋斗!

Expanding culture is a forceful undertaking for the powerful Chinese traditional culture, with power philosophy as its foundation, with the core values of breaking new ground, development, forging ahead, and going on the offensive. Its spirit is about four words: power, expansion. Confidence in expansion, belief, conviction that promotes martial spirits, sublime literature, and peace.

拓展文化是对强势的中华传统文化有力的承扬,以力量哲学为基础,以开拓、发展、进取、进攻为核心价值观。它的灵魂就是四个字:力量,拓展。拓展的信心、信念、信仰就是尚武、崇文、和平。

Dong Fangyi believes that the masses create history by the medium of heroes. Heroes are extremely important, with the hero master being the heroes’ hero. The hero master must master the masses and military force. The hero master is the king of military force, financial resources and of intellect. He believes only in power. Everything of the hero master is achieved in huge battles. Big war is comprehensive and taking place in many fields, including political, military, economic, cultural, psychological and other fields. The hero master formulates his grand strategy from the perspective of big war, the core principle of which is national great security, the nation’s great development, and the world’s great integration.

东方毅认为,人民群众是通过英雄来创造历史的。英雄至关重要,雄主则是英雄中的英雄,雄主必须掌握民众和武力。雄主是武力、财力、智力之王。雄主只相信力量。雄主的一切都将在大博战中实现。大博战是全维的、多域的,包括政治、军事、经济、文化、心理等诸多领域。雄主从大博战的角度来制定大政略,其核心原则是国家的大安全、民族的大发展、世界的大融合。

Expansionism emphasizes human identity and is [a/the] main impartial [or objective] interactive philosophy. Subjectivity leads objectivity, the process of practice transforms the objective world, and also the subjective world. What expanding culture strives for is the huge transformational force of theory versus reality. These theories are symbolized in Dong Fangyi’s expansion thoughts by “Hero Master and Expansion”. In this book, there are thorough, detailed and comprehensive elaborations, and since its publication, “Hero Master and Expansion” has received broad support from the circles of the party, government, military, and academics.

拓展主义强调人的主体性,拓展主义是主客观互动哲学。主观统领客观,实践的过程改造客观世界,也改造主观世界。拓展文化追求的是理论对现实的巨大改造力量,这些理论在东方毅拓展思想的代表作《雄主与拓展》一书中有详尽全面的阐述,《雄主与拓展》一书自出版以来,在党政军学界都得到了广泛的支持。

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Related

Left for home, Rodong Sinmun, May 21, 2018
University of Fine Arts, DPRK Today, May 18
Chinese Personage, naenara, May 18
Ryu Mi-yong, 1921 – 2016

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Sunday, July 1, 2018

Donald Trump’s Quiztalks

When Donald Trump speaks without a script, it sounds like BBC Radio 4 entertainment – the I’m-sorry-I-haven’t-a-clue style, where people are supposed to talk without repeating a single word, or without mentioning a specific world. Something like …

Host: Mr. President, you are supposed to speak about clocks for sixty seconds, and you must use the word “clock” only once.
Trump: I don’t mind clocks. I like those things. I actually love them. We have a great relationship. The only problem with clocks is …
Detector: BUZZ!!!


Anyway. Why is the president supposed to participate in a game where winning is not important? That’s preposterous.

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