We’re Sorry If This Gives You Nightmares, But This Is Hu Jintao’s “O” Face

Hu Jintao on Beautiful Agony
We’ve spliced together Hu Jintao, China’s outgoing leader, and Beautiful Agony, a website that… Beautiful Agony began as an experiment*, to test a theory that eroticism in human imagery lies not in the body, but in the face; that film of a genuine, unscripted, natural orgasm can succeed where the most visceral mainstream pornography fails,... Read more »

Here They Are: China’s Magnificent Seven For The Next 10 Years

China's Magnificent Seven
Xinhua via People’s Daily (h/t Alex Wang) We’ve been waiting for this. Caption: “Xi Jinping, Li Keqiang, Zhang Dejiang, Yu Zhengsheng, Liu Yunshan, Wang Qishan, Zhang Gaoli, who have been elected members of the Standing Committee of the Political Bureau of the 18th Central Committee of the Communist Party of China (CPC), arrive to meet... Read more »

It’s Officially Official: Xi Jinping Is General Secretary Of CCP, Li Keqiang Is Premier

Your new Politburo Standing Committee, by Mark MacKinnon
[WHICH NEWS ORGANIZATION WILL BE FIRST TO PUBLISH A PHOTO OF THE NEW SEVEN? WE'RE STILL WAITING. Reuters at 3 to 1 odds, I think. Rolling updates after jump.] (UPDATE, 12:41 pm: Mark MacKinnon wins! We’re tired of waiting for an official photo though. The image above has been appended.) (UPDATE, 12:55 pm: Xinhua wins,... Read more »

Everyone Is Anxiously Awaiting The Announcement Of China’s New Leaders

Great Hall of the People
Twenty minutes past time, and no sign of Xi Jinping, Li Keqiang, et al. But don’t freak out: join in on the fun. Twitter is at #WhyXiJinpingIsLate, and it’s lively. Featuring… Andrea Yu Mikhail Gorbachev The ghost of Mao Zedong The ghost of Jiang Zemin — even though he isn’t dead George W. Bush Clint Eastwood... Read more »

Under The Banner Of The Celestial Kingdom

Banners, banners, banners
The Party Congress is, mercifully, over. For those of us here in Beijing, it feels good, like a massive cold-water colon cleanse. Now with the brown-nosers out of the city, we can reflect. Now that it’s over, I mourn the loss of the banners. The propaganda rags had a few different roles to play during the Congress. 1) Don’t report bad news. 2) Make sure everyone loves the Congress. 3) Love our dear leaders. 4) Publish editorial rimjobs about the Party Congress. 5) Convince people that change will happen gradually, after they die. 6) Hate the US and their pussy-ass elections. 7) Bang on about the Party Congress, no matter how boring and un-news-like, until you kill yourself, go on, do it, just kill yourself. Do it. You pansy. Go on. You don’t have the balls, do you? Do it. DO IT!

Woman Of The Hour, Andrea Yu, Is Actually Andrea Hodgkinson, Magazine Cover Girl [UPDATE]

Andrea Hodgkinson Yu
This story just gets more interesting by the minute. Via @fightcensorship, we've learned that Andrea Yu will be appearing on the cover of the November 16 issue of Oriental BQ Weekly Magazine. The red letters read: "Australia watches the 18th National Congress," and on the second line, "Andi," which is the Chinese rendering of Andrea. "Hodgkinson" is Yu's real (given?) surname.

Stephen McDonnell Gave Andrea Yu, Star Bilingual “Reporter,” A Firsthand Lesson In Journalism, And It’s Not Pretty

Andrea Yu
Yesterday, while writing about an Australian reporter who had become somewhat of a Chinese Internet star because of her Mandarin-speaking ability, I was most struck by something she said in English. At a press conference inside the Great Hall of the People, she mentioned she was representing "Global CAMG Media International." I googled that phrase and found no results on the first page. The closest match was "CAMH," which is completely different. That should've sent up a red flag, instead of a yellow one. But this was still the early stages of the story, and the news seemed to be the question itself, not the identity of the questioner, so I went ahead with the post.

Here’s Hu Jintao Looking Absolutely Thrilled To Be Casting A Vote “In Election For CPC Central Committee”

Hu Jintao is thrilled
As China promotes up-and-comers to its approximately 350-member CPC Central Committee, culminating in an announcement (we hope) of the all-powerful nine-member Central Politburo Standing Committee, the place you should be keeping an eye on today is @XHNews, Xinhua’s official Twitter account. Not only will it probably break the news of the new Standing Committee —... Read more »

People’s Daily Has Slideshow Of “Beautiful Scenery,” By Which It Means Women

National Congress girls
“Look, a female!” exclaims People’s Daily. We’ve been waiting for this. In March, we saw the Ouroboros of Chinese media, when journalists took pictures of other journalists in a slideshow for China Daily. But this year? The humor hasn’t been handed to us on a platter, so we’ve had to dig a little. No longer. Here’s People’s... Read more »

“You Speak Very Good Chinese,” NDRC Chairman Tells Female Australian Reporter [UPDATE]

“You Speak Very Good Chinese,” NDRC Chairman Tells Female Australian Reporter
Turns out, nope -- at least in terms of content. But on Saturday afternoon, one reporter attracted an equal amount of attention at an 18th Party Congress press conference. She stood up, took the mic, and asked a nearly minute-long question in Mandarin, and then wryly said, "I'll translate for myself." A few chuckles came out of the erstwhile catatonic crowd.

CCTV Reporter Suffers Total Brain Meltdown During Live Interview About National Congress [UPDATE]

This interview never gets off on the right foot: the lag between the anchor and the reporter is a full five seconds, causing the anchor to make a “Why haven’t you acknowledged my greeting?” face. Reporter Feng Yuxian, live from Dubai (that’s the Dubai Tower Burj Al-Arab Hotel in the background), then delivers her correspondence... Read more »

No One Can Resist The Animal Magnetism Of Hu Jintao

Fuck it fuck everything GIF
China Daily: “Hu’s report gets nationwide attention.” No, seriously, it says that. RFH has a theory that the people who organize the National Congress intentionally make it as boring as possible to test the outer limits of what “watchdog” journalists are willing to tolerate before they throw up their hands, a la: Chinese media, however,... Read more »

Obama Is An Inspirer Of Nations, Particularly China, And Provides Good Material For English-Language Study

Obama's distant nations
Whatever your feelings about American politics, it’s hard to argue that Barack Obama doesn’t shine on the big stage with the lone spotlight. The man knows how to deliver a message, and it’s liable to be heard as clearly halfway around the world as by those closest to him. According to Tea Leaf Nation: In his... Read more »

Pictures From The 18th National Congress

18th National Congress
As we prepare to begin the second day of the 18th National Congress of the Communist Party of China, here’s a roundup of some pictures from Day 1 and prior. Our coverage so far: Clinging to life; Twitter accounts attacked. More via China Digital Times, MSNBC and Sina.

Security Officer Dies After Working 30 Consecutive Hours Preparing For 18th National Congress

Shenyang officer's wife
The rapidly approaching 18th National Congress has claimed is first victim. Ren Changlin, 53, suffered a heart attack during his 30th consecutive hour at his post at a security bureau in Shenyang, Liaoning province on October 30. He “threw himself into the work,” notes Shenyang Daily. There’s no indication that Ren was forced to work so... Read more »

Uh Oh, They’re Handing Out Red Armbands In China Again

Red armband
We are, in spite of everything (slower Internet, mostly), looking forward to the upcoming National Congress that starts next Thursday, because it means we’ll get to see silliness such as pictures of photojournalists taking pictures (WHO WATCHES THE WATCHERS’ WATCHERS???), and there’s always the chance that someone will literally die out of boredom. One thing we are... Read more »