thelerner

The Chinese Communist Revolution

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Wait, what am I talking about? It already was great!

 

Keep My Ancient Civilization Great Again!

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I believe your opponents couldn't win against you because they failed to figure out the real argument that could help them.  I'll do it for them then if you don't mind. 

 

The real distinction here is not between old, middle-aged and young civilizations but between civilizations with total, partial, or just marginal memory loss.  An old one can have superb memory despite its old age.  A young one can be totally amnesiac -- an exuberant senile teenager of a civilization.  The point your Chinese opponents should have made in defense of their position would then be, "you can't enlighten us as efficiently as you assume you can because you don't remember who you are and where you come from, and therefore there's no guarantee you're not lost." 

 

I bet you can read any Chinese text from exactly the same period this English text comes from -- try reading it:

 

Hƿæt! ƿē Gār-Dena in ġeār-dagum, þēod-cyninga, þrym ġefrūnon, of thede, hū ðā æþelingas ellen fremedon. Oft Scyld Scēfing sceaþena þrēatum, 5monegum mǣġþum, meodosetla oftēah, egsode eorlas. 

 

I bet you know, and can expertly use, quite a lot of Chinese medicine from 2600 B.C..  I wonder what a graduate of an American medical school knows about American medicine of 100 years ago.  

 

I've often told a Taiwanese friend with whom I usually have these debates that the Chinese government ought to hire me for some PR position.  I always wind up defending China -- and not only am I not enamored with modern China, I'm not that crazy about even the Shang dynasty.  What I'm crazy about is the fact that they still remember and use things from before even then.  From prehistory...   from where we've all been but don't remember.  And China, whose civilized history is every bit as horrendous as everybody else's, somehow still does, although for how much longer, it's hard to tell at this point.  And I think that's what they themselves, perhaps largely unconsciously (that's why they fail to formulate a strong conscious argument), feel about it too, even though they might not be able to put a finger on exactly the spot where the real reason for pride and dignity can still be felt.   

 

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Posted (edited)
2 hours ago, Walker said:

Lol, this has to be in my Top 3 crock of shit intellectually lazy PRC brainwashing machine excuses for Chinese excess (also a favorite to be trotted out by my Indian friends, too). Oh lorrrrd, wrong on so many levels.

I think you are getting lost in the weeds of your own confirmation bias.

 

There ABSOLUTELY is a lifespan of a culture...and it's often a measure of its sustainability and long-term philosophy.  For example, most aboriginal cultures have lived the same lifestyles for tens or hundreds of thousands of years, basically unchanged and intact.

China falls short of such aboriginal cultures, clocking in at just a few thousand years.  But, it has endured that long because it does still have some long-term ecospiritual/health traditions that seek to address the roots of issues, not just symptoms.

 

Whereas Western governments tend to last only a few hundred years...

Quote

“A democracy cannot exist as a permanent form of government. It can only exist until the voters discover that they can vote themselves largesse from the public treasury. From that moment on, the majority always votes for the candidates promising the most benefits from the public treasury with the result that a democracy always collapses over loose fiscal policy, always followed by a dictatorship. The average age of the world's greatest civilizations has been 200 years. These nations have progressed through this sequence: From bondage to spiritual faith; From spiritual faith to great courage; From courage to liberty; From liberty to abundance; From abundance to selfishness; From selfishness to apathy; From apathy to dependence; From dependence back into bondage.” - Alexander Fraser Tytler

Although the real reason for this is that they typically function as parasites living beyond their means.  So, they will often experience a rapid growth spurt initially when they first infect and suck the natural resources dry from some new land...but will eventually starve themselves as those resources run out, all their quick fixes (in health, society, ecology, etc) keep snowballing the unresolved root problems generationally, and their financial debt does too from compounding borrowing from bankstas to fund their perpetual warfare.
US-national-debt-graph-historic.png
us-debt-graph-2020.jpg
OTOH, just 2160 years to go at this rate...no problem, amigo!  MAGA, bros! :lol:

Edited by gendao

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5 hours ago, Taomeow said:

What I'm crazy about is the fact that they still remember and use things from before even then.  From prehistory...   from where we've all been but don't remember. 

 

Every human on planet earth uses these things. In fact, there's a solid chance that a person with less culture would use more of them. They can open up spontaneously for anyone, anywhere; they can be found being passed down and inherited by certain individuals in all lands; and they can be blocked by the miseducation that is to be found in all nations, including those we call "young" and those we call "old." 

 

___________

 

I wish I spent a decade over there and concluded differently, but here is my conclusion, which you may accept, reject, or put in a gray area as you like:

 

The majority of Chinese people's mantric "we have 5,000 years of civilization" is little more than lip service. It has to be lip service, because for people to walk around with the kind of empowerment they would generally have if they'd had the opportunity to truly grow, cultivate, realize, and embody the kind of teachings their ancestors passed down...

 

... then the CCP would be extremely worried. 

 

Furthermore, and imo tragically, the cultural memory of Chinese civilization has been appropriated by the CCP with alarming effectiveness to build a narrative that essentially reads: For 5,000 years, everything our ancient forefathers (no mothers once you get past Nuwa, mind you--even Wu Zetian generally gets a bad rap) was part of a wondrous and enlightened march towards, well, us, the communist party. And in fact, all of the thousands of philosophers who came before were doing their bit to bring us towards the culmination of human wisdom, namely: Marxist-Leninist-Maoist-Xi'ist thought! Even the yin yang was a precursor to dialectical materialism! You see, we were always inevitable, and we therefore do not make mistakes. You, being just a member of the "100 last names," need not think about the affairs of the world, because politics are for politicians, and you just want to be happy and buy things. In the meantime listen to everything your father says and save big bucks to pay for your ailing parents' and grandparents' medical care, because we don't have a social safety net or a functioning civil society that might fill in the gaps. Those things are a part of western decadence. They might sound like socialism, but only if you actually think about Marx, and remember, we already told you you don't need to think, just memorize the standard answers! After all, this is socialism with Chinese characteristics. What are Chinese characteristics? Whatever we say they are this week. Don't worry, we'll keep you up to date! And by the way, if we have to run tanks into Hong Kong tomorrow or launch missiles at Taiwan the day after, that's because we're protecting you from all the evil Japanese and Mongols and Americans who are responsible for every last bad thing that ever happened here! It's all. Their. Fault!

 

Literally all of the above I had heard from people's mouths countless times, read in textbooks, and even regurgitated onto test rolls. If I am exaggerating, honestly, just barely so. The whole "Daoism was the primitive attempt at realizing the glorious truths of Marxism-Leninism-Maoism" was right in my "Intro to TCM Theory" course as an important point to remember for the test. 

 

As I said, the CCP is actually quite terrorized of Chinese culture, and this is why they pulverized it for decades and continue to do so with anybody who attempts to gain personal empowerment and agency from the culture in any way that might propose even a slight challenge to the current authoritarian-planned-economy-capitalist-consumerism model. Want to found a "traditional" taiji studio and make money teaching students? You're more than welcome. Start imbuing your students with a strong enough sense of self direction that one of them draws attention to himself in his high school for refusing to play along, and then says, "well my kung-fu master said part of being a good martial artist is thinking for yourself and making your own decisions about right and wrong"? Well, expect a visit from the PSB with the quicknessss.

 

The merciless crackdowns on qigong in the 1990s and before that with the Cultural Revolution (recall that qigong had two periods of massive popularity in the 20th century, both of which were followed with mass imprisonment) are a perfect illustration of how jittery the CCP gets when Chinese people start to truly drink at the well of their own culture. The CCP propagandists have been so effective at spreading their "just listen to us, we'll tell you exactly how and when you may be Chinese" orders that even Hu Yaozhen's own daughter looked me in the eyes and told me that the teachings that her father lost his life to Red Guards for spreading don't belong in the general public, "things become chaotic if too many people cultivate." Well, I'm glad that a 99-year-old Dragon Gate master had to lose his life in a gulag after selflessly sharing his teachings, you know, to prevent chaos and all that. Wait, hmm, so the chaos was the qigong masters' fault?! 

 

Finally, as for the language issue, honestly your point does not sway me and I'm not just saying that to be a contrarian. The vast majority of Chinese people cannot and do not read classical Daoist texts. They probably have an advantage (maybe a huge one) if they choose to try and learn how to read them versus a modern Englishman who wants to learn an old English dialect, but I don't believe they objectively have any more proximity to the past than anybody else on earth (nor would having that, if it's possible, necessarily be a good thing). What millions of people in the PRC certainly do have is an oft-repeated story that, mind you (and as you seem to have intimated yourself), has been passed down as a means of social control for millennia. But that actually-rather-shallow story arguably occludes far more than it covers up. I mean, "we're all the grandsons of Emperors Yan and Yellow and we're the descendants of dragons" sure rolls off the tongue and sounds reeeaaalll grand (especially if you're 3/4 pissed off baijiu and stuffed to the gills at a banquet), but here's the rub: sit down with most Chinese people and press them on their legends and philosophy and they can go about as deep into it as any Englishman in a pub can on King Arthur and the Magna Carta. It ain't that amazing, but what does amaze me is the way that "everybody listens to daddy in Chinese culture because we have Confucius, and by the way, Xi is everybody's daddy" went from being a ludicrous position to something grown ass men say to me with passion in just six short years. People everywhere seem to have the potential to damn near get high on these stories--but I'm pretty sure that lurking behind the "Xi is daddy" trope is a bit of extra help from, oh, and mass imprisonment, torture, the ability to end whole careers with a phone call, control over the internet, utterly unchecked surveillance, and... shit, I don't wanna break any word count rules here, so I'll just stop. 

 

Although I am grateful that years in China certainly did allow me to encounter some very old wisdom, I'm also aware that had I remained for that decade in the west and applied myself with the same diligence to local traditions, I could have done exactly the same thing. Furthermore, looking at what I inherited "OEM" culturally as a kid who grew up in the States, I wouldn't say it was lacking in depth and richness when lined up against what the Chinese have. To be certain, the depths and riches I encountered in Chinese culture and American culture happened to be in quite different places, but that is all. If I had to do it all over again, I'd still choose to be born in Europe and grow up in the US.

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Posted (edited)
5 hours ago, gendao said:

Whereas Western governments tend to last only a few hundred years...

 

Lol, kid:

 

No government in the land mass commonly referred to as "China" has ever lasted more than a few hundred years. 

 

More study + less copy-and-pasty + less typey = good for Gendao

 

————————————

 

P.S., if you think that the Chinese don't play ridiculous finance games,

 

Drive around the back country, anywhere, and bear witness to thousands and thousands of unnecessary, shoddily built skyscrapers looming over the horizon.

 

Their population is shrinking from 1.3 billion.

 

In 2016 they already had at least enough housing for 3.4 billion.

 

And they are still throwing up towers.

 

I was on a train last week in Shandong, and my boss next to me stopped counting high rise construction cranes after 50 while we were stopped at one buttcrack station in the middle of nowhere. 

 

Still not convinced? Before you retort with a handy-dandy graph, give me 90 minutes of your time for this.

 

 

Edited by Walker
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Posted (edited)
3 hours ago, Walker said:

Every human on planet earth uses these things. In fact, there's a solid chance that a person with less culture would use more of them. They can open up spontaneously for anyone, anywhere; they can be found being passed down and inherited by certain individuals in all lands

Well said.  Every prior generation's experience is present in our genetic structure and their former forms are also present materially in the soil we grow our food in.  It is as accessible as we are willing or capable of seeking tapping in and accessing it.

 

3 hours ago, Walker said:

tragically, the cultural memory of Chinese civilization has been appropriated by the CCP with alarming effectiveness to build a narrative that essentially reads: For 5,000 years, everything our ancient forefathers (no mothers once you get past Nuwa, mind you--even Wu Zetian generally gets a bad rap)

One of my teachers, (18th generation lineage holder) spoke of this at length.  He was a young man child when the Japanese invaded and was trained in the Arts by two Uncles on his Mother's side (one Shao Lin the other Wu Dang), they went into hiding and came to live with his mother when the Japanese were sweeping through, murdering as many capable Arts Masters as they could manage.

 

3 hours ago, Walker said:

the CCP is actually quite terrorized of Chinese culture, and this is why they pulverized it for decades and continue to do so with anybody who attempts to gain personal empowerment and agency from the culture in any way that might propose even a slight challenge to the current authoritarian-planned-economy-capitalist-consumerism model. Want to found a "traditional" taiji studio and make money teaching students? You're more than welcome. Start imbuing your students with a strong enough sense of self direction that one of them draws attention to himself in his high school for refusing to play along, and then says, "well my kung-fu master said part of being a good martial artist is thinking for yourself and making your own decisions about right and wrong"? Well, expect a visit from the PSB

 

3 hours ago, Walker said:

The merciless crackdowns on qigong in the 1990s and before that with the Cultural Revolution (recall that qigong had two periods of massive popularity in the 20th century, both of which were followed with mass imprisonment)

That same teacher, was imprisoned for decades by the CCP, for this very reason.

 

3 hours ago, Walker said:

had I remained for that decade in the west and applied myself with the same diligence to local traditions, I could have done exactly the same thing

As I mentioned in my first response, the accumulated experiential vibration of our entire generational past is present in our very genetic structure and is accessible in my experience, on occasion seemingly spontaneously as conditions support it, or through diligent, prolonged effort, training and seeking. 

 

In my case, this is why stillness and looking inward are so potent.

 

The past is not lost, or gone in my own unfolding path... it's woven into the very fabric of my body which contains all this wisdom, so poignant, profound and present, that it often staggers my localized awareness when I encounter it. 

 

Whispers:  Don't think, feel, be present... like a finger pointing to the Moon.

 

While there may be cultural and social amnesia, I find it's very much present individually and is carried on in some families with great alacrity and hardy stewardship.  The wisdom in not lost; only dormant, unaccessed in current vibrational tendencies and distractedness.  When quiet, still, looking inward, it's all present... hell it's materially present now, our houses are built on it and it's in the soil we grow our food in, which is literally the bodies of our ancestors.

 

Great conversation all, deep thanks.  I'm experiencing great benefit from this reminder at this moment.

 

adding:  synchronously... two clicks after leaving this conversation I encountered this article on the genetic presence of denisovan and neandertalis dna in our modern structure... Genetic Ghost Hunt

Edited by silent thunder
changed some wording and added a sentence and a link
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On 8/17/2019 at 5:37 AM, Walker said:

 

Lol, this has to be in my Top 3 crock of shit intellectually lazy PRC brainwashing machine excuses for Chinese excess (also a favorite to be trotted out by my Indian friends, too). Oh lorrrrd, wrong on so many levels.

 

 

 

I think he did well to say what he said to a civil audience, and an American audience at that, who could have reacted in much the same way as you have. I didn't see anything shitful or dismissive about asserting the point about the strength of tradition. After all, its not like the US is currently some paragon of virtue to be lauded over as the current trajectory the US is on can hardly be called 'inspiring'. 

 

One cannot be choosy about the importance of experience and tradition. 

 

I would personally have taken your subsequent narrative more seriously had you opted to exclude the opening dramatics, but to each his own, I guess. I should not have strayed off topic, so apologies to the OP. 

 

 

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You're right, I opened my post badly. Of course it might read as "you're full of shit," which is my fault for writing too colloquially, and coming off as rude, when I was just shooting off at the mouth carelessly and not meaning to point my finger at anyone in particular.

 

That said, if my points are solid they still stand even if I'm too uncouth 😀

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On 8/17/2019 at 4:28 AM, Walker said:

 

Every human on planet earth uses these things. In fact, there's a solid chance that a person with less culture would use more of them. They can open up spontaneously for anyone, anywhere; they can be found being passed down and inherited by certain individuals in all lands; and they can be blocked by the miseducation that is to be found in all nations, including those we call "young" and those we call "old." 

 

 

I suspect that "culture" that entails elimination of normal natural developmental pathways (since before birth, during birth, in early infancy, and onward) is not the right word for what happened to us, that the word is a euphemism for something entirely else: domestication.  Epigenetics is a relatively new science and its findings are relatively frightening.  We inherit whatever features of our "culture" have been traumatic, persistent or imprinting, that's what it keeps finding.  We are not free of what our ancestors did and what has been done to them.  When we experience a spontaneous opening, ideally it is an opening into a pristine paradise, but in reality, it's an opening into reinforced walls of developmental trauma of millennia, into whatever hell happened between that paradise and now -- not just ontogenically but phylogenically.   

 

I think I can relate more and more to that taoist who, upon returning from the invisible realms, found that our everyday world is not all that rich with nuances and differences -- "everything is mysteriously the same."   The indoctrination by CCP you describe, e.g., is something I encountered growing up myself, in the form of the indoctrination by the CPSU, almost verbatim.  And I was growing up a dissident, believing that if what this side offers is a crock of shit, there's got to be another side, in some imagined mirror world, where they offer a crock of honey instead.  I genuinely believed that whatever side does it differently does it right.  What can be worse than the devil you know, intimately, up close and personal?  Turns out something can be worse.  The devil you don't know, skilled at wrapping the crock of shit in a shiny plastic wrapper that lists "Honey" as the main ingredient on the label.  You buy it, you commit to gobbling it up -- and if everybody around is smacking their lips and going "sweet, fresh, fragrant," you have to choose between shutting down your senses and sensibilities and going along -- or finding yourself in that uncomfortable misfit/outsider position once again.

 

Besides, flavors of our various "cultures" might indeed vary.  If you're lucky to focus on that instead of on "everything is mysteriously the same," you can choose one over the other -- see everything that's wrong with the ones you didn't choose in clear detail, blurring out everything that's right with them (if there's anything that's right with any of them, that is) --  and consider the problem solved.   Historically, no one with any power to change things ever stopped at that though -- they typically proceeded to get whatever culture was different from theirs to conform to what they have chosen for its "development."  And that's more distortions piled up on top of the already piled up distortions of the "abnormal and pathological process of domestication of humans" (Konrad Lorenz.)  

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Bound to be beautiful: The bizarre practice of foot-binding was once a symbol of beauty in China

 

Foot-binding – a widespread custom in China which lasted for over 1,000 years – from the 10th to 20th century, is considered by many to be one of the most dangerous fashion trends in history. For centuries, tiny, curved feet were a symbol of beauty in the Chinese culture, and the bizarre tradition of foot-binding was passed from mother to daughter, generation to generation, 

 

The fashion trend was soon adopted by upper-class women in the south of China and eventually, it spread to the north of the country. While at the beginning it was considered a symbol of high social status and wealth, eventually it spread to all women, regardless their social position.

 

Neck rings seem like another fashion trend that seems bizarre

 

we seem to be a lot more tame with modern fashion and we can by boots that look like hoofs

 

IMG_1358.jpg

1560928252_19_10-Of-The-Most-Bizarre-Modern-Fashion-Trends.jpg

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_/\_ but when I showed the above to a friend who lives in CA but is originally from Taiwan, he responded with a scathing refutation...  might share what he had to say if anyone's interested.  (We routinely have heated arguments about China, me usually defending it from a Chinese who makes a sharp distinction between "mainlanders" and everyone else.) 

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6 hours ago, Taomeow said:

...  might share what he had to say if anyone's interested.  (We routinely have heated arguments about China, me usually defending it from a Chinese who makes a sharp distinction between "mainlanders" and everyone else.) 

 

I'm interested! I read the original article and wasn't sure whether to be very impressed or very sceptical. Any data points which help clarify WTF is going on are always appreciated.

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On 8/28/2019 at 3:01 AM, Taomeow said:

Fascinating and uplifting for those of us looking at solutions for today's problems with sustainabilty.  Many great ideas, yet within it are lines like 'Some of these Uyghurs, Kazakhs are sent to the reeducation camps and they are forced to learn Mandarin Chinese and the latest drip irrigation techniquess .. each village is assigned with one or more communist party members to guide them through to make sure that they don’t mess up the newly cultivated land.'

 

I get a little wary when lines like 'sent to re-education camps and.. forced to' slip into narratives on sustainable farming.  

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On 8/19/2019 at 4:26 PM, Wu Ming Jen said:

Bound to be beautiful: The bizarre practice of foot-binding was once a symbol of beauty in China

 

Foot-binding – a widespread custom in China which lasted for over 1,000 years – from the 10th to 20th century, is considered by many to be one of the most dangerous fashion trends in history. For centuries, tiny, curved feet were a symbol of beauty in the Chinese culture, and the bizarre tradition of foot-binding was passed from mother to daughter, generation to generation, 

 

The fashion trend was soon adopted by upper-class women in the south of China and eventually, it spread to the north of the country. While at the beginning it was considered a symbol of high social status and wealth, eventually it spread to all women, regardless their social position.

Just an interesting FOOTnote to that, lol:

On 10/9/2009 at 2:33 PM, gendao said:
Quote

"Tang court women followed Persian and Turkish fashions, wearing dresses with tight-fitting bodices, pleated skirts, and hats with enormous veils. And it was apparently imitation of foreign toe-dancing groups that originally led upper-class Chinese women to bind their feet. At first it was just palace dancers who bound their feet slightly, like ballet dancers, to stand on their toes." - When China Ruled the Seas: The Treasure Fleet of the Dragon Throne, 1405-1433 by Louise Levathe

PicMonkey+Collage.jpg

566266d1409437029-ballerina-foot-injurie

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On 9/5/2019 at 11:38 PM, thelerner said:

Fascinating and uplifting for those of us looking at solutions for today's problems with sustainabilty.  Many great ideas, yet within it are lines like 'Some of these Uyghurs, Kazakhs are sent to the reeducation camps and they are forced to learn Mandarin Chinese and the latest drip irrigation techniquess .. each village is assigned with one or more communist party members to guide them through to make sure that they don’t mess up the newly cultivated land.'

 

I get a little wary when lines like 'sent to re-education camps and.. forced to' slip into narratives on sustainable farming.  

 

Yep. I get a lot wary.

 

Yesterday I was attending a factory audit in China and during our copious downtime I showed this thread to a Chinese colleague who was sent down from Beijing. She works for a government-owned enterprise which is involved in international logistics (i.e., foreign company wants something built in Chinese factories; in exchange for a slice of the pie her company helps them find a reliable factory, manages logistics from the factory to the port in China, and does a bit of QC) but which primarily sells Chinese made military hardware around the world. Last time I visited their office in Beijing they gave me a model of a fighter jet which evidently I could buy if I had slightly more money than was in my bank account last time I checked.

 

I offer her background, because she is no member of the local counterculture. She works for one of those state-owned companies where your boss keeps your passport in a drawer and you need special permission to go on vacation. 

 

So I showed her the stuff about wondrous Chinese agriculture and, well, one of her eyebrows went skyward, the other eye squinted, and she snorted. Her reply:

 

"You know all those huge forest fires in Brazil right now? You know has China has imported huge amounts of soy beans and corn from the US for years now, right? Well, thanks to the trade war China has cut way down on its purchases of American agricultural products. Instead, we're turning to Brazil to pick up the slack. Brazil sees big money, so they're slashing and burning like crazy to make room to plant all that corn and soy for the Chinese market." 

 

Makes it kinda obvious why a paltry $20 million from Macron wasn't enough to sway Bolsonaro, eh? They see a much bigger payday. 

 

Any suggestion that China is self-supporting agriculturally is far from factual. They even import rice from the US. 

 

Also, any suggestion that this country is doing anything serious and large scale about pollution due to agriculture is also afactual. Beyond their borders, the modern Chinese thirst for milk has transformed New Zealand agriculture from sheep-based to cattle-based and as a result primarily of cow shit and piss the majority of rivers in NZ are now too toxic to swim in, whilst massive algeal blooms at the deltas of rivers kill off all of the endemic plant and marine animal life. This is not something that the Chinese government is trying to stop. I'm sure there are Chinese people who would like to stop it, but if they try and start NGOs or even personal blogs to complain about this issue, it is bye-bye time. 

 

No, seriously, it's bye-bye time.

 

A few years ago there was a documentary about the sources of Chinese air pollution called Under The Dome, which was made with the approval and even encouragement of some people in the government.

 

Nobody expected it to get 500 million views inside of a fortnight, and suddenly the creator--a well-known and beloved woman journalist--became persona non grata. Her career was derailed, all sorts of negative gossip about her personal life flooded over the internet, oh, and most important of all, her magnum opus disappeared from the internet.

 

Well. 

 

Of course, people with a soft spot for modern China might still find themselves saying, "but those are isolated incidents," to which I have only to say: come hither. Live here. Learn the language. Spend time with the people. Walk the land. Breathe the air. Breathe the toxins. Make love here. Eat here. Fight here. Spend enough time here so that every cell in your body is Made In China and then, then, let us convene again to continue this conversation.

 

Because there are many interesting conversations to be had about China when you're in China and you're speaking in Chinese with the Chinese.

 

For instance, last night, after our day's work, we had an interesting conversation.

 

I was tired and not in the mood for much back-and-forth, and thankfully everybody present has known me for years and I long ago went from being a curiosity to just "the guy for whom we need to order a few extra veggie dishes," so I spent most of the evening just listening and sipping at my tea, the proverbial fly on the wall, eh.

 

So eventually the conversation--which involved the aforementioned logistics expert and the local factory management--turned to a local man-made island. A few years ago the local government began work on making an island of "reclaimed land" (a silly bit of newspeak, if you ask me) next to the city here so that they could build a massive chemical plant. Believe it or not, locals banded together to protest, and the project was put on hold (good on them!). This was a sleepy little village until recently, when a huge number of horse-horse-tiger-tiger skyscrapers near-ish to the ocean sprung up as a relatively inexpensive retirement and vacation home destination not terribly far from Beijing, Tianjin, and other northern concentrations of wealth. People didn't want their air and views ruined (the water long ago became unswimmable), and for awhile they prevailed.

 

Until this year, when word came down from on-high that there will be a chemical plant, and that is that. Some of the old protesters evidently took to the streets once again, but then the new-fangled facial recognition technology was turned upon them. The police (or whatever you wanna call the people who do this snitchy shit) didn't both to deal with the protesters directly. Instead they contacted everybody's bosses and told them to tell their employees never to have anything to do with the protests ever again, or else face immediate termination.

 

Needless to say, if you lost your job because the CCP told your boss you are not allowed to work, you don't get to find another job.

 

Also needless to say, that chemical plant will be finished soon. 

 

Ahhhhhh, China, I once dreamed of you as a land of flowy silken Daoist robes, languid taiji performances atop Holy Mt. Wudang, and long afternoons spend tipping tea in Chengdu teahouses. Oh, what a surprise it has been to get to know you so well.

 

Again I must emphasize, I was not sitting at a dinner with a bunch of curmudgeonly malcontents in the Beijing punk scene or Great Firewall-hopping college students sympathetic with the HK protests or intelligentsia struggling to readjust to totalitarianism after being overseas in free(r) countries for five years to get PhDs. I was sitting with a bunch of factory managers who've barely been out of their province, have zero kind words to say about the desire for freedom and democracy in HK, think that Taiwan should be invaded, and included this in the very same conversation:

 

Manager: Are you a member of the Party?

 

Logistics expert from BJ: Me? No.

 

Manager: I'm getting ready to join. Got to join.

 

Logistics: Oh yeah, why?

 

Manager: Well, you know what they say, can't get ahead without joining the Party. Won't be easy for my kids if it's seen that their dad made it this far along in his career and didn't join the party.

 

Logistics: Oh, I see.

 

Manager: Even worse if you leave the Party. They say that if you leave the Party, your offspring can't get good jobs for three generations, government sees to it. 

 

Logistics: Huh? Really? People leave the Party?

 

Manager: Oh, yeah.

 

Me: Wait, who leaves the party?

 

Manager: Oh, well, you know after Falun Gong a lot of people resigned from the Party. They're screwed now. Everybody's backgrounds are being closely checked these days. Really closely scrutinized. Best to be in the Party.

 

Again, ain't no hippies at the dinners I'm having out here. 

 

As for some of those lovely photos and fascinating agricultural techniques in that Quora piece on "what's really going on in China," I don't doubt that some of that is real. But saying that it's what's "really going on" is about as realistic as lifting up a photo essay about permaculture farms in the US and acting as though that represents what's "really going on" with agriculture in the US. Sure, that stuff is there. No, it is not mainstream. No, WWOOFers are not a counterweight to monoculture, GMO, petrochemical US farming. 

 

Additionally, as my logistics expert colleague pointed out when I discussed the piece with her, not all of that stuff is eco-friendly whatsoever.

 

For example, we have known for a long time here that all that seafood farming you see pictured is terrible for the environment. Those seafood farms are absolutely doused in antibiotics and chemical designed to promote fast growth, so much so that even produce grown near such farms ends up laden with these pharmaceutical products. This is a major, widespread concern--Chinese confidence in the safety of their own foods is extremely low. Everybody (I don't say that hyperbolically--I simply mean anybody who is not insane) takes it as a given that the oil you eat contains a high proportion of oil skimmed from the tops of sewerage flow; that the meat is chock-full of chemicals and medicines; that the produce is slathered in huge amounts of pesticides; and that genetic engineering is widespread and unregulated.

 

Thus, this is the country that has already got scientists genetically engineering human babies.

 

Thus, all of my Chinese friends who have the means to do so establish personal relationships with farmers who reserve a small plot of their land for growing foods without any chemicals, which they then sell on the grey market to people they know personally, whereas everything else that's sold on the open market is the same old chemical soup you probably have in every other industrialized nation. 

 

Finally, those amazing plastic greenhouses that allow seven harvests per year? First of all, I mean, let's not gush too much here, Quora guy. Those are just greenhouses, not exactly a new technology. Second of all, they are well known here and people constantly complain about how all of the off-season, artificially ripened, grown-extra-quickly-with-pharmaceuticals foods there are both tasteless and contaminated.

 

The low level of faith that the PRC citizenry has in its nation's own products is a major part of the reason for the HK protests. Many Hong Kongers have taken to the streets in rage because PRC traders come into HK--which has actual rule of law instead of total corruption and a law that is wielded as a tool of oppression--come into town and buy up all the local, safe(r) food products and medicines and then ship it into Shenzhen, where it can be resold to wealthy Chinese people who do not trust local products at huge markup. This leaves local Hong Kongers with empty shelves, and a lot of anger.

 

But you can't blame the PRC Chinese for not trusting the local drugs and foods. Remember the fake rabies and other vaccine scandal that rocked China this year? Or was it last year? I seriously don't remember. Just as you can't keep track of mass shootings in the US, you cannot keep track of tainted food/drug scandals in China. 

 

I want to finish this star-in-eye-removing post by copying and pasting something relevant that came into my inbox this morning. It is written by the wife of a human rights lawyer in China who has been detained for four years. To punish the lawyer, his son has been banned from attending first grade. Remember what I said above about protesters against the chemical plant being punished by having their bosses be told by the CCP to fire them? Remember what the factory manager said about about needing to join the Party for one's offspring's sake? Here you see it written firsthand, by a victim:

 

Quote

 

In 2016, the police issued an order to all the kindergartens, including all the early education centers in Beijing’s Shijingshan District (石景山区) to not accept my son at their schools. My son, Quanquan (泉泉), had stayed home, unable to attend school since May
2018. Then, by luck and coincidence, I found a private school that accepted him. Quanquan finally was able to go to school, joining the top kindergarten class there.

 

It was a hard-won opportunity for Quanquan, and he was very excited. On the first day of school [in 2018], he woke up at 6 am. He tugged at me, acting cute one moment and threatening me the next. I had to get out of bed. We washed together, and after getting dressed, he wanted to go to school. Reluctantly, I told him that the school bus wouldn’t arrive at the gate until 7:48 am. His single-eyelid eyes flashed with ardent hope, and he said to me pleading: "I want to go early to wait at the gate. Please?”

 

So I gave in, unable to say no to his adorable face. So, we sat on the side of the street waiting for the bus for more than an hour before it was due to arrive. Quanquan was a little anxious; he would stand up and sit down, stand up and sit down again, making me dizzy just watching him. His small pudgy face was full of worry, and he asked me over and over again: "Mom, are you sure we’re waiting in the right place for the school bus?” It was annoying and amusing at the same time; all I could do was answer "Yes!" over and over again. At that time, I thought, it was only children who’ve been unable to attend school who could feel such excitement about going to school. Quanquan really liked his school. The flowers and trees in the school grounds, the sandboxes, the trampoline, and the various insects on the lawn made each day full of surprise and joy. The school’s atmosphere was happy, relaxed, and full
of love, which led to Quanquan arguing that he wanted to go to school on Sundays. He also made a lot of friends, and he even secretly liked a little girl. 

 

Quanquan successfully completed kindergarten without incident. I thought at the time that attending school would no longer pose a problem. Come September 2, Quanquan was promoted to primary school. School has only been in session for four days, but the police have visited multiple times already to put pressure on the school. As a result, my son is once again forced out of school. 

Having been told that that Quanquan could not continue school, I felt all my strength was sucked out of me there and then. Heavyhearted, I walked out of the school gate. At home, Quanquan’s maternal grandpa had just suffered a severe cold, stooping after days of high fever and coughing. I tried hard to pull myself together, not wanting to cry in front of him. But I broke down after all, tears streaming down my face.

 

I was thinking, why? Why?

 

It's no wonder that every time I visited Quanzhang (王全璋), what he worried about most was whether our son could go to school. No wonder he repeatedly sought confirmation from me whether our son was indeed going to school. When Quanzhang was detained four years ago, our son was only two and a half years old. Now, it looks like our son has been made into a bargaining chip which officials are going to use to coerce Quanzhang. Maybe that’s why every time I see Quanzhang he tells me not to come visit; maybe that’s why Wang Quanzhang said he did not want medical parole (as I write this, I recall that Quanzhang has lost three teeth in the past four years; maybe that’s why Wang Quanzhang said that after he is released from prison next year, he would continue to be subject to government monitoring, and would not return to Beijing, but stay in Jinan!  

 

They detained and isolated an innocent lawyer from the outside world for four years; they held a secret trial of him without lawyers present to defend him, and then transferred him to prison to serve his sentence, and repeatedly blocked me, his wife, from visiting him. Now they are making an issue of a 6-year-old boy attending school.

 

I have to ask, what do you want?

 

Do you intend to make a mother give in and give up by making her suffer pain and despair over her son’s loss of schooling? Or, are you using his son to strike the imprisoned father and force him to bow to your menacing?

 

Or, perhaps you are concocting a tribute to your grand celebration of the 70th anniversary of the founding of the People’s Republic of China by depriving this six-year-old child of schooling, and inflicting pain on this family.

 

Quanquan knows that he can't go to school anymore starting today. He asked me: "I am the leader of Team No. 1 in martial arts class. I can't lead the team anymore, what to do? The teacher is going to teach a lot of new moves, which I won’t know -- what should I do?"  He’s not ready to accept that fact that he has no school to go to anymore. He’s said repeatedly that he wants to go school, he wants to go to school. 

 

I wiped my tears, and began to smile, telling him: “If we can't attend this school, I believe that God will provide another school for us that is just as good as this one!”

 

Li Wenzu, September 6, 2019

 

In the spirit of "No More Right-Wing Bullshit," I am happy to take half an hour out of my day to poke holes in CCP propaganda bullshit. 

 

 

The uber-narrative of the glorious Middle Kingdom is a beautiful one, all the more because there is some truth to bits and pieces of it, and one can gain much from those truths if one is lucky enough to pick the diamonds from the shards of glass. The CCP knows the power and allure of this illusion, and spends hundreds of millions of dollars to promotes, surf atop, and hide behind this narrative. It blows the smoke of this opiate into its own people's ears, and into the ears of people around the globe. This propagandizing serves them very well, and I expect the volume will be turned up yet again as the next Olympics draws nearer. 

 

Losing the China of one's misty-eyed dreams isn't fun--I say this because I've been through the process myself (seriously, ain't too many people who took deeper draughts of the Kool-Aid than I did), and I've seen many others, foreign and Chinese go through the unpleasant process of Middle Kingdom "I came to seek the Dao and all I got was brown lung and a useless education at a shitty TCM school and even more useless martial arts training on Holy Mount Dampbutt" disillusionment.

 

It's tough, but it is an important process. So I'ma keep these reports from the ground coming. Because, imo, it's better off for seekers who might end up going to the PRC or studying with teachers from the PRC (where Dao-frauds are as abundant as they are in the US, but where they manifest a slightly different set of bamboozling techniques that all make heavy use of the uber-narrative) to read this first. The ones who are champing at the bit to go won't be stopped from buying plane tickets or signing up for overpriced seminars from fake Daoists, nor should they be. But if they remember that once, somewhere on some dusty corner of the internet warned them, they might--just might--pull out before they get in too deep with some bullshit. 

 

Who knows.

 

Anyway, if anybody doesn't believe what I'm saying...

 

... you can always go live in China for five years and then holler at me. There are a million bunk beds at Shaolin just waiting for warm bodies. Enjoy your adventure. 

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On 9/5/2019 at 11:57 PM, gendao said:

PicMonkey+Collage.jpg

566266d1409437029-ballerina-foot-injurie

 

Ah, yes, this. I showed these photos to the logistics expert. 

 

Her grandmother--still alive--had bound feet. They are very different. 

 

When her grandmother was seven her mother finally decided to bind her feet. 

 

Seven.

 

She remembers having her feet be broken and stuffed into the bindings. Incredible pain. The pain followed her for eight years, until she was in her teens, when she prevailed in having them removed. Although I guess the practice was probably officially illegal by then, they were in the countryside, so the practice remained widespread. Even so, social change was moving quickly then, and she managed to get her mother to relent.

 

Now in her 90s, her feet have, of course, never healed. She walks unsteadily and painfully, and her toes are curled underneath the ball of her foot like a fist. If her nails grow too long, they grow into the flesh of her foot, causing agony and infection. Because she walks atop her nails, they are very thick, and cannot be cut by normal means. Even her family members lack the skills and tools to cut her nails, so she has to regularly visit nail cutting experts who specialize in cases like this. No joke.

 

There is a surfeit of TV shows and movies showing "ancient China" right now. Have you ever seen even ONE that shows women hobbling around or unable even to stand, therefore crawling around? No. It is all fantasy, the Chinese equivalent of "tits and dragons."

 

The illegality of facing these slightly-historical abuses in art in China contributes to the inability of the country to face the modern versions of these abuses. The position of women in China remains very low, despite what idealists will say about Mao elevating women's roles. Two examples:

 

Some years ago in Beijing, a Beijingese woman was quite taken with me and kept asking me out. I could feel that we had no real affinity, but she was a nice person and eventually we went for coffee and a walk around the Temple of Heaven Park. She was recently back from graduate school in England and at first we were able to find quite a bit of common ground, each having experiences life in very different cultures. 

 

Eventually we began discussing her work, at a big white collar company of some sort in the capital. She told me how the young women who didn't possess Beijing residence permits (“戶口," a most coveted and important document that still determines where one can live, where one's kids can go to school, where one can receive medical care, and more) but wished to keep their jobs all faced a simple dilemma: 1, sleep with the management when told to. 2, lose their jobs, and likely their foothold in the Beijing economy. 

 

She explained that those from Beijingese families were pressured to sleep with the management, but would not lose their jobs if they refused to, because the managers could not hold losing the ability to work in Beijing over them, and also because the managers worried that the Beijingese women's families might have "connections" (關係) that could strike back at them. 

 

It was a very sad scenario, and I found myself feeling disgusted with the men at her work and the scenario in general. I really felt that she must be deeply indignant about the whole thing, and was surprised when she seemed perplexed by my vexation. I asked her, "don't you think all this needs to change? Aren't you revolted? Don't you wish you could stop them? This isn't far off from rape." 

 

She looked at me like I was a bit crazy and offered a monotone response: "Well, look, that's just the way it is, and we're all used to it. Nobody's going to change it, nobody can, so why bother worrying about it?"

 

I lacked any ability to relate to her sentiments, although I now much better understand them. As I illustrated in the above post, choosing to protest anything in China--even things that are actually illegal--is almost a guaranteed way to ruin one's career and even bring ill effects raining down on one's family members. The plight of feminists who handed out stickers with anti-spousal abuse slogans on them is well documented. They continue to be persecuted half a decade after the event, but in fact they didn't commit a crime. Beating one's wife is illegal in China, after all, and they just wanted to remind more men. But their "crime" was showing too much agency, empowerment, and courage. For this, they have been forced to pay dearly, harassed and chased from city to city, their NGOs shuttered. 

 

The other example took place in TCM university. A professor, who regularly reminded us that he was the second-highest ranked CCP cadre in our school, one day inexplicably and pervertedly exposed the pubic hair and upper part of the vulva of a woman in our class. He simply pulled her undies down, rubbed her stomach salaciously, and mumbled about how beautiful the skin on her tummy is. As nonchalant as you please. In front of twenty people. We were fucking gobsmacked. In such a situation, you really don't know how to react.

 

After class a number of us remained behind in fury. The victim is a US citizen, but she was born in China and grew up there till she was 14. She knows the society well. She eventually called an end to our impromptu meeting, saying: "Look, I'm furious and I know what I would do if I was in San Fran, but there's nothing I can do here. Who is going to listen to me? Who is here to protect us? He's a high ranking cadre, and it wouldn't even matter if he wasn't. If we want to graduate, there's nothing we can do. So we've just got to forget it." 

 

And that was that. 

 

Shit, I can go on with the stories.

 

I once chilled with a driver at the company of a liquor magnate I know who had been lured into what amounted to a slave camp on the edges of Beijing. Young, hopeful men and women from all over the countryside answered ads saying this company would train them to act and then get them into the movies. Yeah, right, you say... but kids from the middle of nowhere don't realize what a scam that is. Till it's too late. They were locked in a compound and given menial jobs, their ID cards and phones taken away from them. At any time the women--girls, really--would be taken into back rooms and raped. They were all threatened that if they tried to escape or make contact with the outside world, their families would be harmed and so forth. Eventually the guy figured they didn't have the power to carry forth on their threats, and having once been trained for the Chinese special forces, he worked out a way to climb over the wall with relative ease. He eventually tried to help the others escape. Nobody came with him--they were too afraid. 

 

I'm almost reluctant to leave the final anecdote in this post, as it probably seems too far out. But then again, should it? In some prison camps some ICE officers are doing doing the same thing, no? There is widespread sexual slavery all over the US, no? Why not China? And at any rate, when I related that story to Chinese friends of mine in Beijing, none of them thought much of it. "Yep, lotta scams out there, very dangerous for migrant youths from the countryside, have to be careful, pass the ketchup wouldja?"

 

We're a loooooooooonnnnnnnggggg way from utopia over here, chums. 

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On 9/5/2019 at 11:59 AM, Taomeow said:

_/\_ but when I showed the above to a friend who lives in CA but is originally from Taiwan, he responded with a scathing refutation...  might share what he had to say if anyone's interested. 

 

Please do!

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20 hours ago, Walker said:

Ah, yes, this. I showed these photos to the logistics expert. 

 

Her grandmother--still alive--had bound feet. They are very different.

 

There is a surfeit of TV shows and movies showing "ancient China" right now. Have you ever seen even ONE that shows women hobbling around or unable even to stand, therefore crawling around? No. It is all fantasy, the Chinese equivalent of "tits and dragons."

 

The illegality of facing these slightly-historical abuses in art in China contributes to the inability of the country to face the modern versions of these abuses. The position of women in China remains very low, despite what idealists will say about Mao elevating women's roles. Two examples:

 

Some years ago in Beijing, a Beijingese woman was quite taken with me and kept asking me out. I could feel that we had no real affinity, but she was a nice person and eventually we went for coffee and a walk around the Temple of Heaven Park. She was recently back from graduate school in England and at first we were able to find quite a bit of common ground, each having experiences life in very different cultures. 

 

Eventually we began discussing her work, at a big white collar company of some sort in the capital. She told me how the young women who didn't possess Beijing residence permits (“戶口," a most coveted and important document that still determines where one can live, where one's kids can go to school, where one can receive medical care, and more) but wished to keep their jobs all faced a simple dilemma: 1, sleep with the management when told to. 2, lose their jobs, and likely their foothold in the Beijing economy. 

 

She explained that those from Beijingese families were pressured to sleep with the management, but would not lose their jobs if they refused to, because the managers could not hold losing the ability to work in Beijing over them, and also because the managers worried that the Beijingese women's families might have "connections" (關係) that could strike back at them. 

 

It was a very sad scenario, and I found myself feeling disgusted with the men at her work and the scenario in general. I really felt that she must be deeply indignant about the whole thing, and was surprised when she seemed perplexed by my vexation. I asked her, "don't you think all this needs to change? Aren't you revolted? Don't you wish you could stop them? This isn't far off from rape." 

 

She looked at me like I was a bit crazy and offered a monotone response: "Well, look, that's just the way it is, and we're all used to it. Nobody's going to change it, nobody can, so why bother worrying about it?"

 

I lacked any ability to relate to her sentiments, although I now much better understand them. As I illustrated in the above post, choosing to protest anything in China--even things that are actually illegal--is almost a guaranteed way to ruin one's career and even bring ill effects raining down on one's family members. The plight of feminists who handed out stickers with anti-spousal abuse slogans on them is well documented. They continue to be persecuted half a decade after the event, but in fact they didn't commit a crime. Beating one's wife is illegal in China, after all, and they just wanted to remind more men. But their "crime" was showing too much agency, empowerment, and courage. For this, they have been forced to pay dearly, harassed and chased from city to city, their NGOs shuttered. 

 

The other example took place in TCM university. A professor, who regularly reminded us that he was the second-highest ranked CCP cadre in our school, one day inexplicably and pervertedly exposed the pubic hair and upper part of the vulva of a woman in our class. He simply pulled her undies down, rubbed her stomach salaciously, and mumbled about how beautiful the skin on her tummy is. As nonchalant as you please. In front of twenty people. We were fucking gobsmacked. In such a situation, you really don't know how to react.

 

After class a number of us remained behind in fury. The victim is a US citizen, but she was born in China and grew up there till she was 14. She knows the society well. She eventually called an end to our impromptu meeting, saying: "Look, I'm furious and I know what I would do if I was in San Fran, but there's nothing I can do here. Who is going to listen to me? Who is here to protect us? He's a high ranking cadre, and it wouldn't even matter if he wasn't. If we want to graduate, there's nothing we can do. So we've just got to forget it."

 

We're a loooooooooonnnnnnnggggg way from utopia over here, chums. 

Of course the feet are different.  My point wasn't that ballet feet are AS BAD as bound feet - but that you can literally see how the practice of foot-binding originated from them by imitation.  The bizarre practice didn't just spring out of thin air somehow...  It was like a bad, ancient Chinese Louis Vuitton "Western luxury" knockoff, lol.  Just like how most of the other things in China you bitterly complain about today (anti-ecological industrialization, chemical plants, factory farming, food tainted with antibiotics, chemicals, meds, etc, Communism, etc)...are actually imports from Western colonialism.

Prior to WWII for example, Chinese typically squat shat in outhouses...which were periodically emptied by night-soil men to be used as fertilizer for crops.  Which was an entirely organic, closed-loop process.  All of the synthetic herbicides, pesticides, GMO, (modern opium), etc, etc used now came later from the West - just like you.  Who now complains about the same things that the West brought to China! :huh: I mean, you're right...you and your modern Chinese cohorts just have no clue as to WHY??? :lol:

 

And the position of women in China is "low" compared to the narcissistic position that Christians elevate all of (Christian) humanity to.  But, it is not arguably "low" compared to the position of men in China - which are largely all used as back-breaking, disposable labor...  Or, would you or your Chinese girlfriend like to trade shoes with one of these guys for a week?  Bust your back hauling tourists up mountains daily for just enough fen to afford a dusty apt, girlfriend not included...  Then, wash, rinse, & repeat as you enjoy your "high" position! :lol:

9DrrfSQ.jpg

Quote

In China, humans (MALE & FEMALE) are simply BOTH not elevated to as lofty a position in the food chain, which many Westerners find "barbaric"...but in reality is far more in line with the natural order of things and much more ecological.  Remember, Daoism is Naturecentric (viewing humans as PART of and ideally followers of Nature)...unlike Christianity - which is HUMANcentric (viewing humans as SEPARATE from and SUPERIOR to Nature).

 

Which is why more natural, ecological practices still do come easier to Chinese culture...

Because indigenous (not Westernized) Chinese culture still views the body as a landscape, and the landscape as a body...
alchimia-interiore-nei-jing-tu.png

2017-09-cancer-pt1.jpg

Now, you also say there are not many Chinese "tits and dragons" series showing women hobbling around with bound feet.  Well, nor are there many Chinese series about how the Jews/Anglos killed 100 million Chinese in their Opium Wars, are there?  Or for that matter, has there ever been a SINGLE Hollywood movie about that whole saga, either...  And how many of their old Westerns depicted the "Indians" as the victims of Cowboy colonialist genocide and entire Turtle Island of ecocide?  Point being, it's not just a Chinese cover-up of 1 specific collective trauma (particularly of shame)...but of many of them.  And really, it's not just Chinese culture/media...but many cultures in general.
Destruction_of_opium_in_1839.jpg
So, the Daoist utopia you sought WAS far more prevalent in China...before Christian colonialism moved in around the block...and there went the proverbial neighborhood!  Now, ~600 years and 2 World Wars later...what all do you expect is left?
The+Opium+War+When+China+refused+to+be+c
Battle-scene-assault-illustration-Britis

China_imperialism_cartoon1.jpg
Z9bvk7U.jpg
Again, there's so many people around the world complaining about the same things, here...yet not realizing what they all actually stem from!  You are all seeing many of the same dots, but lack the cognitive ability/original thinking to connect them all together.
Brazil-banner-1-1568x641.jpg
o-CHRISTIAN-CHURCH-CENTRAL-AFRICAN-REPUB
71HvJBgaauL.jpg

Edited by gendao

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Habitually connecting every dot you see to confirm, confirm, and once again re-confirm to yourself that all evidence everywhere proves the story you are already convinced of is a disease of the mind. It is  obsession. A paranoiac who believes Mickey Mouse is out to kill him, upon having an explosive shit, will turn his eyes upon the toilet bowl, see a matrix of brown dots, and instantly within them a clear image of Mickey Mouse will appear.

 

That is you. 

 

You're a silly boy who plays all day on his Christian phone using Christian Google Image Search and Christian Twitter and Christian electricity to make points that are not points.

 

For fuck's sake, this twit gets a little "I made a smart" mind-boner by telling me about "historical organic toilets from 100 years ago" that I shit in on a regular basis while I'm actually there.

 

Get off your pasty, bepimpled ass and experience the world. 

 

Stop playing on the internet all day.

 

Or I will be forced to conclude that, much like the homophobe who secretly craves to know the flavor of penis upon his lips and savor the aftertaste of cum in his throat, you secretly love this techno-Christian internet West where you evidently spend 100% of your time.

 

Fucking lame. Grow up and live instead of peeing the same predictable stream of copy-paste everywhere. 

Edited by Walker
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On 9/4/2019 at 8:59 PM, Taomeow said:

_/\_ but when I showed the above to a friend who lives in CA but is originally from Taiwan, he responded with a scathing refutation...  might share what he had to say if anyone's interested.  

 

On 9/5/2019 at 3:07 AM, RobB said:

 

I'm interested! I read the original article and wasn't sure whether to be very impressed or very sceptical. Any data points which help clarify WTF is going on are always appreciated.

 

On 9/6/2019 at 8:58 PM, Walker said:

 

Please do!

 

Here it is -- everything below is a quote from that conversation, written in response to me, not by me (not my circus, not my monkeys ;) )

 

(quote) The way China does things is always questionable.  The cages you saw in the clip was all for fish and oyster farming.  This used to be a big business in Taiwan.  While Taiwanese business people invested in China to expand the business, they stole the knowhow (with government involved) and expanded it 100 fold.  Except with lower standard and price.  Take abalones for example.  If you go to the frozen section of Hmart, you can find bags of frozen abalones in big bag cheap.  80% of the same business in Taiwan had been destroyed by this kind of practice.  The remaining supplies only to Japan and Taiwan which demands higher quality and sanitation standards.  Not only this is a bad business practice, they also destroyed the natural habitat for sea birds and fish that are native to these areas.  It all looks great in the food photos of course.  This may be a different practice than the Monsanto, but the damage to the land is far greater.  The Yangzi river dam now created even greater problem.  The local species of fish went extinct, water born bacteria and pests are on the rise and the geo-structure has been damaged.  More earthquake than ever before.  Worst of all, it was a terrible construction works.  The dam is now deformed threatens approximately 200 million people’s livelihood.  Yet, one of the butcher of Tien An Men square has his daughter in the Yangzi Power company making all kinds of money.  Whatever they are building, is for the power to pack money into their pocket and left a monument to amaze people.  This dam, is nothing more than a giant statues of Mao gone bad.0-8.jpg.c1803dd2675132b00d54dddfb7ff48a3.jpg

 

China’s rice, wheat and potato production is generally enough 82%.  The main imports are Soy and Corn account for approximately 18%.  This may not seem like a lot, but it’s actually critical to the Chinese society.  It represent all the soy products, cooking oils and animal feeds.  To put it in perspective, it roughly accounts for 1/5 of the 1.3Billian population without food.  With the Swine disease, they are now seriously short of meats.  Trade war has affected at least 3 million jobs now.  The government over printed the RMB by 5 times and running out of foreign reserve.  The real estate bubbles are about to burst.  Few reginal banks already gone out of business.  Inflation starts taking off.  Yet, the government decide to add retaliatory tax on the critical imports from USA for the trade war.  CCP is one really stupid and F**ked up government.  The propaganda department is cooking up a pot of nationalism to hate American and boycott American products.  Here in the wealthiest city in China – Shanghai.  The first Costco opened in Shanghai only lasted 3 hours cause everything is gone.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mt7V2oCx3ws

 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ljtf6QR4rzY

 (end quote)

 

 

Edited by Taomeow
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Thanks for posting that @Taomeow. Most of what your friend said sounds pretty par for the course to me, especially regarding the technology theft (ah, the number of foreign companies who've been left out to dry in China due to government-sponsored technology theft... this is endless, and one of the few things that gives me a bit of common cause with Trump supporters, heh). 

 

The dam photo might well have been a quirk from satellite imaging. I have little faith in modern Chinese construction techniques except for when it comes for massive infrastructure projects. However, the resultant increase in earthquakes is likely a reality. I used to moonlight editing for a Chinese geology journal and they were writing about this problem 10 years ago after the big earthquake in Sichuan, quietly understood to have possibly been triggered by the huge increase in dams in that province. 

 

Don't know if the real estate bubble is really about to burst or not. It's always "about to burst," but then the government "pulls economic levers," and the economy keeps lurching forward. I don't know if anybody really understands how these things work (I certainly don't think economists do haha!). The best analogy I can think of is: just as some kids drink themselves to death in a single fraternity initiation while others manage to chuff along hard-binging alcoholics all the way till they're in their 70s, I think it's hard to predict when the Chinese economy will finally crumble under the weight of its truly insane reliance on building crappy, 60-story-tall apartment buildings in the middle of nowhere to "concretize" money. China will soon be able to house an extra 3 billion people who don't exist and never will, while the majority of their extant 1.4 billion people already cannot afford to buy an apartment and never will be able to. Talk about a perverse distortion of supply and demand. It is made all the more perverse when "buying" actually means signing a 70-year lease. Private home ownership in China reverts to government ownership after 70 years, so instead of becoming a source of intergenerational wealth, one essentially toils for a lifetime to throw one's wealth into a black (or red) hole. Then again, who needs to own an apartment for more than 70 years if the building was not even meant to last more than 50 years? 

 

The videos of the Costco crowd show people in Shanghai, far and away among the wealthiest and most "urbane" in China. They are acting quite mad, all to get some half-off detergent. The key point is that very few of the people who can make it to Costco in Shanghai are anywhere even near poverty, to say nothing of starvation. But madness still ensues even there (*please see below before anybody mentions America's Black Friday stupidity). The same thing happened when an IKEA opened in Shanghai in 2006. I was working at an IKEA in the US, and we were regularly reminded of the impending happy event that was to be the opening of the new Shanghai store. Then there was a stampede on the opening day with multiple deaths, and nobody spoke of it again.

 

If wealthy, well-fed, highly educated Shanghainese people lose their minds for blue light specials, imagine what the mob actions of actually poor, hungry, dispossessed Chinese people is like. The case of a factory boss getting lynched is especially famous, but there are thousands of serious riots around China every year, such as this one that occurred when plans to build a train station in a destitute town were scrapped (I still remember how the photos and videos circulating on WeChat that day before they were scrubbed were far bloodier than what the news article shows, and included children lying bloody and motionless on the street). Whatever may be projected by its billion dollar international "look how happy we all are, future future happy happy rich socialism with Chinese characteristics and facial scanning" international propaganda machine, the CCP is quite terrified of the masses who are arguably much closer to explosion than the citizenry of other countries. Thus do we have widely documented reporting on the close cousin of "ghost cities": "zombie factories."

 

Re: zombie factories, so terrified of mass unemployment is the government that it orders thousands of factories and steel mills kept open running skeleton crews, producing nothing or next-to-nothing, all over China. This is not just something appearing in the western media to slander the poor little CCP. I have seen this affect a company I work for, because they have been offered business way below cost by bosses of Chinese factories who are desperate to be doing anything.

 

The funny/sad thing is that these Chinese bosses play along and keep their money-losing factories open because they can still milk the banks for more money as long as they can show that they are "in business," and for them--just like Trump--more loans is all they really want, because they've figured out that the banks will never recall those loans, because the banks themselves are afraid of reporting to their superiors that they have bad debt, could not get it back if they tried, and would destroy the economy if they started repossessing the assets of debtors. So this cycle continues, and all these industrialists keep getting rich by "gaming the system." As they milk money from China, they remain busy obtaining foreign citizenship for themselves and their children. I kid you not, each time I get to know a "proud Chinese" industrialist well enough to exchange personal details, I find out that the person is actually a French, Canadian, whatever national... or else he or she is asking me for advise on which country's passport they should get and where they should squirrel away their money!

 

Now, of course the US of A has decimated industrial towns, highly oppressed portions of the population, crazy people in line at Walmart (Black Friday fisticuffs are obviously no better than the IKEA stampede), and a segment of the population we should all be afraid of if they ever rise up en masse.

 

The difference is that, relatively speaking, we can have honest conversations about this all over our media, including right here on TDB. Whereas the PR of C just has this schlock and a hundred thousand newspaper editors repeating it under threat of jail, in order to put lipstick on this pig:

 

The-ghost-cities-and-zombie-factories-of

 

It is an eerie thing to wander in a concrete canyon at night where only two or three apartments are lit, the storefronts are all empty, and a lone security guard sits in the dark, his face illuminated by the glow of his phone. Such scenes belie the story of the "Chinese dream" just as strongly as a stroll past the Robert Taylor homes in Chicago 20 years ago belied the story of the "American dream."

 

Yet, as truly terrible as so many things indeed are in the US, millions of Americans can and do have their shoulder to the wheel, working together, doing their best to try use solidarity to try and fix this shit.

 

Whereas, in the PRC, if you try and start an NGO or any other sort of organization (including an internet discussion forum) to tackle the problems of society,

 

You will fucking go to jail

 

"掰掰"

Edited by Walker
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Been reading this absolutely brilliant journal 闯 Chuǎng. (Site seems to go down often unfortunately, so if it hangs try again later.)

 

Enjoying it so much I ordered print copies. Highly recommended.

 

Quote

As the Qing dynasty began its slow collapse, thousands of peasants were funneled into port cities to staff the bustling docks and sweatshops fueled by foreign silver. When these migrants died from the grueling work and casual violence of life in the treaty ports, their families often spent the sum of their remittances to ship the bodies home in a practice known as “transporting a corpse over a thousand li” (qian li xing shi), otherwise the souls would be lost and misfortune could befall the entire lineage.

 

The logistics of this ceremony were complex. After blessings and reanimation rituals by a Taoist priest, “corpse drivers” would string the dead upright in single file along bamboo poles, shouldering the bamboo at either end so that, when they walked, the stiff bodies strung between them would appear to hop of their own accord. Travelling only at night, the corpse drivers would ring bells to warn off the living, since the sight of the dead migrants was thought to bring bad luck. Though itself somewhat apocryphal, new myths grew out of the practice, as the hopping corpses were transformed into jiangshi, vampire-like creatures driven to feed on the life force of others. Their own blood siphoned out of them by the docks and factories, these migrant workers were transformed into monsters befitting a new reality—one of crumbling empires, civil wars and the insatiable expansion of commodities.

 

Such death rituals and the myths that surround them have long played a central role in the cultures of the East Asian mainland. Funerals were not a ceremony in which the lost were sealed into their own dismal past, but instead one in which the dead became constituent parts of a history forged in the present. Through extensive rites and careful observances, dead generations were transformed into the roots of the living. Transporting corpses over a thousand li was not remembrance, then, but a strange sort of survival. The stiff-limbed dead walked from their factories, traversed countries torn by war, famine and other unnamable sufferings to finally settle amongst their kin in the dust of their homeland, a rural world that had only just caught sight of its approaching oblivion.

 

Today, China itself has become such a wandering specter. The rural world is dying, yet hundreds of millions of workers still seem stuck between their peasant past and a future that fails to arrive. Two decades of staggering economic growth built on a series of credit bubbles have left a legacy of “development” defined by wastelands of apartment complexes sitting next to half-empty factory cities, each year filled with fewer workers and more unmanned machines. While the elite children of the country’s financial and administrative centers collect sports cars and foreign degrees, the children of today’s migrants are guaranteed little more than the fleeting chance to become yet another corpse crushed to pulp in the factory.

 

As growth rates dwindle, the country seems nonetheless driven ahead by an undead, mechanical momentum. Workers are laid off with nowhere to return. Ruralites give up their land in exchange for a fraction of the condos built on them, soon losing their value to an inflating currency. Entire landscapes are poisoned by decades of rapid industrial expansion, while urban centers succumb to man-made landslides, earthquakes and chemical explosions. Riots and strikes proliferate, but fail to cohere into anything larger. The working class has been dismantled. Nothing is left today but dead generations united in their separation, shambling through the fire and the dust.

 

This is the character of the present moment, and it is here that we begin. Chuang is a collective of communists who consider the “China question” to be of central relevance to the contradictions of the world’s economic system and the potentials for its overcoming. For us, this question is not primarily historical. Our interest has little to do with the professed socialism of a country run by a “Communist Party” left over from the peasant wars of last century. Instead, the question raised by China is founded in the present. As a lynchpin in global production networks, Chinese crises threaten the capitalist system in a way that crises elsewhere do not. A bottoming-out in China would signal a truly systemic crisis in which the overcoming of capitalism may again become the horizon of popular struggles.

 

 

chuang-journal.jpg

 

Sean

 

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