If there's anyone in China who might understand what it means to parody something -- actually, truly parody, and not just copy or co-opt -- it's Ai Weiwei. He's an artist, you know. Who better than he to skewer China's nouveau riche and be this country's answer to PSY? You think Gangnam, South Korea is a district of gross decadence and put-on fakery?
Protesters occupying Hong Kong’s city plaza have won — sort of. Wall Street Journal reports people are feeling “mixed jubilation and frustration” after the city announced yesterday it will make its controversial National Education curriculum “voluntary.” While it’s too early to unravel all the implications of this decision, a direct result is that those on their hunger... Read more »
In the history of censorship in Chinese media, surely we’ve seen more half-baked decisions and upsetting punishments. But surely, as well, we’ve never seen so many journalists punished for such small beer. Spare me your sermon about Liu Xiang as the face of the country’s athletics program and a national hero, etc.: I’m arguing against... Read more »
In an article published Saturday in the Sydney Morning Herald, South African Cameron van der Burgh admitted to cheating in his world-record-setting swim in the 100-meter breaststroke. Swimmers are only allowed one dolphin kick after entering the water and one kick after the turn, but van der Burgh copped to taking multiple — because “every swimmer does that,” he... Read more »
Journalists are fed a lot of crap by the world. Specifically by public relations flacks and sources, but really, the world at large, because we’re surrounded by crap, by fetid logs of horse and other rancid mammalian shit dripping with stupidity and awfulness. It takes a decent journalist to filter that shit and present it... Read more »
What the hell did we watch? Why didn't someone help Liu Xiang up? Why was he left hopping around on one foot like an inspirational failure?
Liu Xiang was in the sixth heat of the preliminaries in the 110-meter hurdles, and on his first leap his left foot collided with the hurdle, sending him down. He landed awkwardly, tumbled and tumbled, and the CCTV commentators emitted a scream and then went speechless for the next five seconds.
We’re at the point where Ye Shiwen can no longer be found guilty in China, if that makes sense. This issue has become about more than swimming. If it ever does come to light that Ye used a banned substance, I suspect the relevant organs will find a scapegoat who admits that he accidentally put... Read more »
First of all, it’s eight minutes. Say what you want about “Survival,” London’s official Olympics song, but at least Muse had the courtesy to stop at a reasonable five minutes and 20 seconds. For what is essentially an overproduced, commercialized ditty, what couldn’t you possibly do in five minutes that you need eight? Actually, we... Read more »
On June 30, two adults at an auto repair shop in Xiajin county, Shandong province pressed a mechanical air pump agains the anus of a 13-year-old boy and nearly inflated him to popping. Literally. The crime was almost too ghastly to comprehend. But comprehend we did, and in the successive days, it was as if... Read more »
No one would confuse China Daily for a real newspaper — the kind that doesn’t write “A Friend’s Departure” on its front page when North Korea’s leader dies — but the company undoubtedly has real journalists on staff, veteran reporters who quietly toil within China’s noxious media environment to produce respectable work, and it’s those... Read more »
I remember, earlier this week, looking at Reuters’s David Gray’s photos of old Beijing Olympics venues and not thinking twice about them, because the headline on Atlantic Cities, where the pictures appeared, read “Beijing’s Olympic Ruins.” I could guess the nature of the misinformed captions that awaited, the smarmy condescension, the clueless-about-China editor at his... Read more »
After physical and mental trauma, how else can one victimize the defenseless? Go after the family. That’s what appears to have happened to the woman who was forced by local Family Planning officials to abort at seven months. By now surely you’ve seen the photo, and know that authorities have done diddly shit to punish... Read more »
Understated as always, Xinhua reports that the city government that employed the officials who were responsible for forcing 27-year-old Feng Jianmei to abort after seven months have “apologized.” In person, I wonder? Via email? Text message? Fucking assholes. The city government of Ankang on Thursday evening apologized to a woman who underwent a forced abortion at... Read more »
Eric Fish of Sinostand basically said all I wanted to in his post earlier today, “Foxconn: A Very Quiet Riot“: Over the past day or so several foreign media outlets including Huffington Post, Business Insider and Bloomberg TV have been reporting that dozens of workers at a Foxconn factory in Chengdu were arrested after clashing with security at a dormitory.... Read more »
I make it a point to not talk about pollution because it’s somewhat of a cliche, especially among expats. Those who live here yet complain about the air — like, blog about it — belong in a set that we can fairly label “whiny.” And vapid. And irksome, too, if we’re being completely honest. But... Read more »
When I was younger and had hope, “The Cask of Amontillado” was my favorite story, mainly because readers are never given a clue as to the offense committed by Fortunato to warrant such hatred.
Similarly, I shall not mention the offense committed by Jonathan Kos-Read to merit the proceeding onslaught. However, I will endeavor to be as professional as possible.
Now, here is a doctored photo of him at the entrance to Birkenau, taken from a folder on my desktop entitled DIE JONATHAN DIE.
Last Friday, the State Council Information Office of the People's Republic of China published a report called The Human Rights Record of the United States in 2011. It was in response to the US State Department's Country Reports on Human Rights Practices for 2011, which featured information on about 200 countries, China included.
China's report, published on Xinhua, et al., was about 8,000 words. We read it so you don't have to -- and brought in TAR Nation to explain what it all means.
MSNBC has a China blog called “Behind the Wall,” and as the name might suggest, it targets an American audience that may not be as familiar with China as those of us here on the ground (“behind the wall” sounds a lot like “other side of the world,” i.e. a throwaway cliche one scribbles on... Read more »
Foreign Policy, that award-winning online magazine devoted to “analyz[ing] the most significant international trends and events of our times, without regard to ideology or political bias,” just gave an evangelical pastor 1,200 words to promulgate his religious propaganda. “Like most Chinese, I was educated an atheist,” writes Bob Fu to begin his panegyric to God... Read more »
Plenty of people nurse a healthy loathing of the “expat in Asia,” and in some instances, that antipathy is understandable, if not justified. (The image you want is of a mustachioed former mill owner, old and white, in Thailand. If you’d like to see some of these fellas here, try the bar Maggie’s.) Yet I’ve... Read more »