The Ideology of Occupation   January, 2019

In the last couple of weeks, two student groups were battling at Peking university, one of China’s most prestigious institutions.  These were battles of words, not fists, but all the more intense for that.

Some might dismiss the conflict as a minor student skirmish over ideology. But the Chinese government reaction suggests that there is a lot more going on – that occupation by a ruling elite can have a light touch, except when it finds itself threatened.   Existential threats, even small ones, must be put down.

To be sure, the conflict at Peking was not a contest for student body president, or a fight over which gendered pronoun to use in addressing a classmate.  It was an ideological fight over who gets to interpret Marxism, and the fight illustrates the extent to which CCP, like every dynasty before it, can be understood as an occupying force.  SupChina has the story-  One Marxist student group is backed by the Party.  The other's WeChat account is blocked

Source:  Socialist Worker - A Time of turmoil shaped Karl Marx’s ideas

Single’s Day – Next Year in Xinjiang

 A pair of sharply discordant messages about today's China came across my desk today, and I was left scratching my head.  How are both these things part and parcel of China now?

One message came from a report from McKinsey that analyzed trends emerging from this year's "Single's Day" self-indulgent shopping mega-spree.

Source: https://investorsking.com/alibaba-singles-day-sales-hit-8-6-billion-first-hour/  and Visual China Group/Getty Images

 

The other message arose from an expanding cascade of reports about the growing repression of China's Uighurs, and the ugly moral and spiritual vacuum -- and the expanding nihilism -- that are pervasively described in these reports.

External view of a Xinjiang "transformation through education" camp during construction  Source: Bitter Winter

What's New is Old Again - on tangibles and intangibles in the trade conflict

Fake LV bag

Source:  Wondermika

 

From Caixin -

China Starts New Crackdown on Intellectual Property Theft After Xi-Trump Talks

Thirty-eight state agencies have announced that they will soon begin a coordinated campaign against IPR infringement

 

... 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)

Page 2 of 3