... and an update  12-11-18 on the update.   A senior US official offers intelligence agency cooperation on Chinese interference in New Zealand, citing in particular the Anne-Marie Brady incidents.   And a closed circuit camera is now in her office, which  was broken into after publication of her research on CCP influence in New Zealand.  No word about protection for her home, her car, or her person. 

 

Back in September, I wrote about threats and break-ins directed at Anne-Marie Brady, a New Zealand scholar who has written about CCP influence in foreign affairs.  Her recent work is titled Magic Weapons - China's political influence activities under Xi Jinping, an investigation of United Front activities such as media and university partnerships, "management" of overseas Chinese, and multimedia communications strategies to influence and co-opt foreign citizens and Chinese outside China. 

School's Out        What Chinese are talking about … (2)

The cult of Xi – from the Little Red Book on Mao Zedong thought to the nightly quiz show on Xi Jinping thought

 

extolling Mao with the little red book; and

extolling Xi with the tv quiz show

Source: https://www.bbc.com/news/blogs-china-blog-45728131   A nightly tv show features students vying to be the one who knows most about the life, speeches, and travels of the current dear leader and Marxism.  This is a game show,  but there are no prizes for winners.  That must be why tv ratings are so low. 

 

What Chinese are talking about … (1)

 I hope this will become an occasional post, based on what I hear on the ground. 

 

Shaolin Monks, originators of Kung Fu, Kneel to Chinese Government

Shaolin Buddhist monks, the world famous monks of astounding feats of athletic skill, concentration, and mind over body, originators of the martial art of kung fu, have indicated their subservience to the Chinese government in a ceremony held at their home temple in Dengfeng County in Henan Province.  This is a first in 1500 years, that the monks would indicate political subservience.

 

All photos: http://english.sina.com/china/s/2018-08-28/detail-ihifuvpi1509972.shtml

 

August 28, 2018 - Beijing: Shaolin Temple raises the red flag  by Kirsty Needham  (China correspondent for the Sydney Morning Herald)

Health Care Crisis

Some of you have read prior posts here on health care, the good, the bad, and the unbelievable.   Now comes the New York Times with a feature on the Crisis in Health Care in China, focusing on the shabby treatment of doctors and patients in the medical system.  As I noted in Hospital Rules (see the Health, Education, Welfare tag adjacent, to the right), the system optimizes for neither patients nor practitioners. 

The video in the NYT piece shows a man making home-made drugs for his mother, who has stage 3 cancer.  She has insurance, but cannot get coverage for drugs that are far too expensive to buy commercially.  If her insurance works as I think it does, she would have to buy the drugs, pay for them, and then get part reimbursement by the insurance company at some later date. 

No Way Out from the Middle Kingdom

You remember the movie, with Kevin Kostner as the exemplary US Navy officer-special assistant to the Secretary of Defense (Gene Hackman).  The plot twists around search for a purported Russian spy in the US, codenamed Yuri, who has been able to infiltrate the Navy at the highest levels.  Following several plot twists, Kostner is ultimately left with no way out – he cannot be seen in public, as he will be implicated in a murder; and he does not want to return to his homeland, which he has not seen for at least twenty years.  He has no safe place to go, and no way out of his predicament.

Was Democracy Just A Moment?

This is the title of a 1997(!) Atlantic piece by Robert Kaplan, the foreign correspondent and advisor to various elements of US defense and foreign affairs institutions.   I have long recommended the piece as a warning against American complacency about the health of our own democracy, and the futility of promoting democracy in places without the cultural means to sustain it - Russia and China being  prime examples.  Again, strongly recommended -

Robert Kaplan.  Was Democracy Just A Moment?  Atlantic Magazine, December, 1997.

The global triumph of democracy was to be the glorious climax of the American Century. But democracy may not be the system that will best serve the world—or even the one that will prevail in places that now consider themselves bastions of freedom.

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