The Shotgun Blog
Friday, June 10, 2005
Globe finds silver lining in anti-China poll
What's a Globe & Mail editor to do when a poll comes out like this one? That quandary was surely top of mind at Front Street last night, when Ipsos Reid released a poll showing that:
"Fifty-four percent of Americans and 40% of Canadians agree “the emergence of China as a superpower is a threat to world peace”. And most Americans (54%) and many Canadians (45%) are concerned about the level of Chinese investment in their country"
"Seventy-one percent of Americans and 61% of Canadians disagree with the statement “China will soon be a true democracy”."
"most Americans (58%) and half of Canadians (52%) do not think we should reward China for its record of human rights abuses by pursuing expanded trade and closer relations"
So what's a Globot to do? You find the one result buried in the study that sounds kind of positive—even though it's based on ugly anti-Americanism—and make that your headline. According to Ipsos, despite the fact that Canadians clearly think China is another Cold War opponent waiting to happen, 68% of them are willing to increase trade with them—"because it will help reduce dependence on trading with the United States." And so, on page A4 of the Globe, we have: "Canadians see silver lining in China's cloud, polls say"
In the Globe's world, willingness to trade with a tyrannical, rights-abusing regime because it'll stick it to the U.S. is a "silver lining" (In fairness, Globe editors probably have a soft spot for the fact that Beijing finds Christians just as "scary" as the Globe does). Of course, you could ask Canadians if they would be in favour of sending children to mine salt on Mars, if it would "reduce our dependence on the United States," and you're guaranteed to get an overwhelming yes.
Or perhaps the Globe is one of the Canadian institutions that has been successfully infiltrated.
In any case, for a most riveting—and alarming—breakdown of what the Canadian government's crush on the Communists will mean for Canada and the world in the next few years, you'll want to read Puppets of Beijing, Kevin Steel's excellent cover story from a couple issues back. I don't want to spoil the ending, but I will tell you this much: there sure as heck ain't no silver lining.
Posted by Kevin Libin on June 10, 2005 | Permalink
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Tracked on 2005-06-10 5:39:25 PM
What do Canadians have against trading with the U.S.? It works both ways. My company (a small fire alarm company in San Diego, CA) buys 99% of the equipment we install from Canadian suppliers (Edwards). That's nearly a $1,000,000 US per year. Would you rather we bought our equipment from American or Chinese manufacturers?
Posted by: Gary | 2005-06-10 3:05:46 PM
Many Canadians, not all of us, are like Democrats, or worse - like Michael Moore and Jimmy Carter – the attitude is blame-America-first. We don’t even have Fox News yet to help get some balance on the truth. But balanced opinions are starting to happen with blogs, just as your Swift Boat Veterans got some truth out about Kerry.
Please be patient with us, we’ll get there – just please please don’t elect the Hildebeast in 2008 – OK?
Posted by: nomdenet | 2005-06-10 4:50:56 PM
Aside from the pathological anti-Americanism inherent in the Canadian national insecurity complex, some of the poling result may be a reaction to US protectionism in Beef and Softwood Lumber.
Posted by: John Chittick | 2005-06-10 4:52:12 PM
I have to apologize on behalf of Canadians. We can't help it - we're indoctrinated.
Posted by: Toronto Tory | 2005-06-10 4:56:00 PM
John Chittick makes a good point,
yes Gary there is horrible anti-Americanism here,
but the US gov't hasn't exactly been following NAFTA that well.
Posted by: Charlotte | 2005-06-10 6:02:34 PM
Canayjin softwood IS cultivated on Crown land, which DOES appeas to be a form of subsidy.
Posted by: Brian O'Neill | 2005-06-10 7:24:09 PM
And WE insisted that the 'Mer'cans set such high anti-BSE standards when WE were busy banning Brazilian beef in rataliation for their banning our 99.99999999% subsidized Gliberal pet project known as Bombardier.
Posted by: Brian O'Neill | 2005-06-10 7:26:06 PM
> Would you rather we bought our equipment from American or Chinese manufacturers?
First, let me say the Canada I've been forced to deal with is not represented by those posting here, in general.
That said, speaking as an American in a similar situation, I definitely would encourage you to do business elsewhere.
As, in fact, I did.
Please consider directing your business to Australians, if you can. They have a firm sense of reality, something sorely lacking in most of Canada today.
Posted by: Mike | 2005-06-10 7:56:04 PM
I'm a lot more concerned about rights violations in Canada than I am about China. A good example teaches more than whiny lectures - especially when the lectures are followed by begging to Please Hurry Up and Buy the Wheat and Airplanes Before the Next News Cycle.
And I wonder why anyone thinks that the citizens of a country with no effective military can have anything meaningful to say about the relative threats posed by superpowers. When Greenland is a threat to your sovereignty, trying to concern yourself with global security problems looks more like a diversionary wank-off than anything else.
And speaking of wankers, how can anyone whose isn't saving a dime of their own money - which is the situation for the average Canadian - feel "concerned" about the level of foreign investment? Were they thinking that someone would come along and simply give them expensive mining and milling machinery?
Posted by: Justzumgai | 2005-06-10 8:07:40 PM
Speaking as a person that loves America and loves W;
we also need to speak of the reality that we would not be having this conversation if by only a hair splitting difference America had elected Al Gore or John Kerry.
The world is a fragile place. Conservatives who are in power like the GOP should not throw stones at those that are still trying to swing the tiny margin of voters needed to attain a majority to influence on government policy.
God bless GWB, John Howard and Tony Blair; and I hope one day soon we can add a Canadian Prime Minister to that short list of realistic global leaders.
Posted by: nomdenet | 2005-06-10 9:25:56 PM
Even a bizarre monstrosity like John Kerry could not destroy American democracy (nor, for that matter, can Bush, despite what his detractors might think), because it's more stable than Canada's.
Consider all the damage that Trudeau did. Even an ass like Carter couldn't come close, no matter how hard he tried, because of the role of the houses of Congress, and all the other checks and balances, and term limits.
(Even Australia is not like Canada, mostly because they have an elected senate)
Posted by: Brian O'Neill | 2005-06-10 9:43:10 PM
["The houses of Congress" -- I meant the House of Rep's and the Senate.]
Posted by: Brian O'Neill | 2005-06-10 9:44:10 PM
nomdenet. Very well said,
Posted by: John Crittenden | 2005-06-10 11:21:03 PM
We need a triple E senate in Canada and we MUST have property rights in our Constition. The left wing nuts of the 60's with the fool turdeau, for an 'anti hero', designed a 'map for failier' for Canada as a Democratic nation. Turdo hated people so he made fools of them. He, like Lenin, liked dictating to the 'great unwashed, but he did not want to talk to them. We lost our way back in the sixties and if it had not been for Eric Nielson (interm opposition leader for the PCs who got the right to privicy passed as an amendment to The Charter for Slavery), we would have no right to privacy - hense we would have the 'homeless' living in our houses. Turdo's dream was Castro's reality.
If any of you placid Canadians reading this post think that we will not fall under the boot of Communism because USA would not allow it, think again - Cuba is a stone's throw from Florida - it is time for us to wake up the cows chewing their cuds. We are a heartbeat away, the only 'bump in the road' for the Communists (lib/NDP/Bloc) is Mr. Harper and his brave band of men and women. We MUST think of a way to startle the cattle.
Posted by: Jema54 | 2005-06-11 6:18:19 AM
Thanks John Crittenden
Brian, Trudeau simply caused us horrible fiscal damage and embarrassed us not as a communist but he certainly was a communist sympathiser, have a look..
The US Presidency on the other hand has a global burden, Rudyard Kipling wrote poems about the burden. Just one simple example of what can go wrong is Jimmy Carter naively talking the Shah of Iran into loosening things up and subsequently the Ayatollahs took over and are now building a nuke and are feeding terrorist/insurgents into Iraq to kill innocent people simply because they desire freedom.
My point to Mike is to empathize with his frustration with Canada. God knows I’ve lived happily and owned homes in 3 different cities in the USA and ask myself sometimes why did I return here. But here I am and we have to turn this thing around, “startle the cattle”. Mike’s burden, like it or not, is to idealistically hang in with us, Iraq and other spots until things turn.
To get back to Kevin Libin’s post and thread here about China, see these comments by VDH; the money line..
“China is strong without morality; Europe (substitute Canada) is impotent in its ethical smugness. The buffer United States, in contrast, believes morality is not mere good intentions but the willingness and ability to translate easy idealism into hard and messy practice.”
Posted by: nomdenet | 2005-06-11 6:48:10 AM
Back to the original subject (Commie China + Canadians) --
The best solution to international problems would be an international union of democracies.
This would make the UN even more irrelevent. A union of democracies could be established as a way of preserving and promoting democratic values without having to tolerate any of the mind-numbing, obstructionist UN crap from Cuba, China, Zimbabwe, etc.
One small step in this direction will be the Aug 14 establishment of a Democratic Pacific Union in Taipei.
Pressure should be put on the Canadian government (contact your MP's) to get involved.
The standards wouldn't have to be very high. At least that there is minimal respect for freedom of speech and religion.
Perhaps slightly higher standards than the Commonwealth. At least representatives of democracies would be able to attend international forums and take action on crises, aid, coups, etc, without having to Syria, Libya, Belorussia, and other out-and-out tyrannies giving us endless lectures!
Posted by: Brian O'Neill | 2005-06-11 7:12:02 AM
Nomdenet - but neither Bush, Clinton, Bush, Reagan, Carter, Ford, Nixon, Johnson, Kennedy etc has or could have singlehandedly destroyed any of the institutions that make America strong.
A Canadian PM could. e.g. Just imagine that the entire Senate or Supreme Court is killed in a terrorist attck or fire or whatever - then the PM would replace ALL of them. That's an extreme example, but even what HAS happened has been semi-tyrannical: i think about 85-90% of our Senate has been appointed by 3 Gliberal PM's (Trudeau, Chretien and Martin).
(I know on the senate web site they list all senators with the name of the PM who appointed them)
Posted by: Brian O'Neill | 2005-06-11 7:22:30 AM
Imagine how much more smoothly international affairs would run if most international action was coordinated by a body with only the following free and semi-free members (knowing they would be expelled if they had a coup or whatever):
Antigua and Barbuda
Bosnia and Herzegovina
Papua New Guinea
Republic of Korea
Republic of Moldova
Saint Kitts and Nevis
Saint Vincent and the Grenadines
Serbia and Montenegro
Trinidad and Tobago
United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland
United States of America
Posted by: Brian O'Neill | 2005-06-11 7:23:10 AM
PLUS ROC-Taiwan and The Vatican!
Posted by: Brian O'Neill | 2005-06-11 7:31:57 AM
The following thugocracies and banana republics could be divided into the "tolerable", with observer status, and the "rank and foul" who can KEEP OUT:
Central African Republic
Democratic People's Republic of Korea
Democratic Republic of the Congo (Zaire)
Lao People's Democratic Republic
Libyan Arab Jamahiriya
Sao Tome and Principe
Syrian Arab Republic
United Arab Emirates
Posted by: Brian O'Neill | 2005-06-11 7:32:34 AM
"Second Democratic Pacific Assembly Meets in Taipei" -- Sinorama, tr. by John Murphy
"In mid-August, 70 dignitaries from 24 countries around the world came to the Grand Hotel in Taipei to participate in the second Democratic Pacific Assembly. The assembly passed a "Pacific Manifesto," and decided that at this time next year-coinciding with the 60th anniversary of the end of World War II-the "Democratic Pacific Union" will be formally established, with the aim of strengthening regional cooperation in the Asia-Pacific area.
"The Inaugural Democratic Pacific Assembly, held in Taipei in September of 2003, endorsed democracy, peace, and prosperity as the common values for Pacific regional development. This year's conference, in turn, focused on the theme of "Blue Civilization," with special attention to the trinity of ocean life, technology, and the humanities. The agenda for the three-day event included discussion of democratization in the various attending countries, regional security mechanisms, sustainable development of maritime resources in the Pacific, and regional economic and technological development.
"ROC vice president Annette Lu, in her capacity as chairperson of the assembly, delivered remarks at the opening ceremonies. She pointed out that the Pacific is the largest and deepest ocean in the world, covering about one-third of the globe's surface, accounting for half of the oceanic surface area of the entire world, and possessing two-thirds of the world's fisheries stocks. Looking along the Pacific coastline, one finds more than 30 countries and two billion people, as well as over half of the world's economic power. Therefore, what happens in the Asia-Pacific area-growth or recession, tranquility or crisis-affects the peace, stability, and prosperity of the entire planet.
"Vice President Lu also declared that the 21st century will be the Pacific century, as well as the era in which "soft power," akin to that possessed by the vast oceans, will make itself felt. "Hard" thinking, based on military aggression and economic hegemony, has long dominated the fate and historical development of mankind, several times leading the world to the brink of extinction. Therefore Lu placed special emphasis on the spirit of cooperation and sharing, on "soft thinking" that can lead to win-win situations, pluralism, and mutual coexistence and prosperity. She urged that the Pacific be managed as a "soft ocean" of sustainable development.
"Lu pointed out that around the globe regional organization is a growing trend, and various continents have given rise to such organizations. Besides the European Union, with its comprehensive political and economic structure, the Organization of American States, the Sistema de la Integracion Centroamericana (SICA), the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN), and the African Union have been formed one after another. However, it is a regrettable fact that Asia, where human civilization began, has yet to effectively organize itself.
"Exploring the reasons for this, Lu noted that of Asia's 39 countries, at the moment 15 have still not put democratic systems into place. Their leaders are not produced by popular election, their militaries have not been brought under civilian control, human rights records have been poor, and they lack of rule of law and meaningful political party competition. Moreover, of the five remaining communist regimes on the planet, four-China, North Korea, Vietnam, and Laos-are situated in Asia. Given these facts, she expressed her hope that by bringing together democratic countries from around the region in a demonstration of soft power, the conference could help implant the spirit of democracy and freedom deeply in the hearts of each and every Asia-Pacific citizen.
"In his remarks, ROC president Chen Shui-bian pointed out that the year 2004 can be considered a crucial turning point for democracy in the Pacific region. In the Western Pacific, several countries, including South Korea, Taiwan, Japan, the Philippines, and Indonesia, have held or will hold presidential or national legislative elections. In the Eastern Pacific, in addition to the fact that ROC allies El Salvador, Panama, and the Dominican Republic have all chosen new leaders, the US will also hold its presidential election at the end of this year. How these proceed will determine whether or not the governments in question can maintain momentum in "deepening of democracy and the pursuit of reform" and thereby win greater popular support.
"President Chen stated that although Taiwan is a commendable example among the new democracies of the Pacific region, as a result of obstacles placed by the Chinese government, Taiwan has long been excluded from the United Nations and associated organizations and moreover is under an ever-increasing threat of armed attack. Of particular current concern is China's plan to pass a so-called "PRC National Unification Promotion Law," which will give it a legal fig leaf for an invasion of Taiwan. This not only threatens the security and prosperity of Taiwan itself, but is an issue to which the democratic countries of the Pacific should collectively give serious attention.
"Many participants at the conference-including Antonio Saca, the new president of El Salvador; Nobel Peace Prize winner Betty Williams [ok - she's an idiot, I know, but Taiwan doesn't have many friends]; and Makino Seishu, a member of the Japanese Diet representing the Japan Democratic Party [n.b. like Canada, Japan doesn't have diplomatic relations with the ROC, but a Japanese opposition MP will attend - so also can individual Canadian MP's] lent encouragement to Taiwan in its current quandary. Moreover, participants uniformly expressed support for Taiwan's hopes to use the organization of the Democratic Pacific Union as a springboard for participation in international affairs, and to build a "values alliance," "security alliance" and "economic alliance" with member states. At this time next year, when the Democratic Pacific Union is formally established, the "blue century" in the Pacific will have turned a new page."
Posted by: Brian O'Neill | 2005-06-11 7:32:57 AM
Well, I'm going to disagree with Kevin Steel. I don't think that China is the scary problem; I think the socialist welfare states in the West are the real scary problem.
A socialist system of any kind, from soft to hard, will reduce production, innovation, competition. It removes the capacity to 'self-organize' from the system and makes it dependent on others to 'do the job'.
Canada is a good example of soft socialialism and its results. It has moved itself into economic and conceptual dependence. In this case, the dependency is on the US. Canada has done this; you can't blame the US or 'post-colonialism' or any other agency. It relies on the US to invent the technology and purchase our copies of their innovations..and purchase our raw resources. Canada doesn't innovate, doesn't compete on the world market, doesn't enable its citizens to be industrial entrepreneurs and developers.
The interesting thing is that when such an infrastructural economic bond develops, the conceptual level is trying to deny it! So, we constantly affirm to ourselves how 'un-American' we are; how 'unique' we are; how we have a 'Canadian identity'..none of which is true..but that offsets the reality that our infrastructural connections have set like concrete.
We tax our people and corporations such that they cannot, themselves, develop their own industries. So how do we then deal with our increasing population, if we keep them all at the median middle class level and don't permit surplus?
We discourage dissent, we discourage 'deviant' thinking; we insist that the Good Canadian thinks and behaves..walking the narrow road of the median. We never, ever, reach out to touch the risky horizons. We refuse to take risks.
Notice the poll - people want to become less dependent on the US..by becoming dependent on China. How about, as was suggested, becoming independent and competitive, like the Australians, taking risks, and marketing your technology and products in a global competitive market?
Our military interactions reveal this same refusal to take risks. We refuse to go into war zones; we define ourselves as 'peacekeepers'; if anything happens to one of our military, we react with horror. No risks.
Canada binds itself into that middle road, preventing itself from moving into competition.
You know, Canada is as much a top-down governance as China...The Cartel of the PowerCorp/Desmarais gang and the Liberal gov't and the MSM run this country's economy and ideology, using soft power, with as much rigour and control as any hard power regime. Who needs guns when the velvet voice will do the trick?
China? Obviously, it is moving out of socialism/communism. That means that it, unlike Canada and Europe, is expanding its parameters of operation, expanding what its citizens can do and think..rather than insisting that they all 'walk the middle ground of thought and actions'. Is it fascist, as Hawkins (n Steel's article in the Western Standard) claims? I don't think so. Fascism is a collectivist ideology, just like socialism and communism. Fascism is more nationalistic than the other two, but, capitalism can never be collectivist.
My view is therefore quite different. I think that as China's wealth increases, as its citizens move out of the communist ideology -and participate more as individuals in the economy, and as entrepreneurial indivdiuals.. and more and more are doing just that - its human rights level will increase.
Human rights are not a 'natural phenomena'; they don't exist among collectivist regimes which all focus on privileging the group - whether hunting/gathering bands or pastoral tribes. Human rights develop when the economy moves into a mode privileging individual innovative thought. That's happening in China..and..slowly..it will respect the indivdual, as it moves out of its centuries of collectivism.
But the scary, the real scary reality with which I am concerned, is the removal of various countries of the West; Canada and the EU, from capitalism and its privileging of the independent risk-taking individual, its focus on developing and investing surplus, its focus on competition and interaction..by a retreat into the dependency mush of socialism.
Posted by: ET | 2005-06-11 7:32:58 AM
China IS best described as a fascist state, even though the government has more power than in traditional fascist regimes.
China is not, de jure, in any way whatsoever a capitalist country.
The individual there has absolutely ZERO rights.
All temporary income, property, familial ties and pseudo-rights are only enjoyed by the grace of the pleasure of the Chinese Communist Party.
Posted by: Brian O'Neill | 2005-06-11 7:46:49 AM
One of the best measures of a free country is religious freedom.
Religion is persecuted in many countries, but according to the US Congress there are only 3 countries in the world with absolutely NO freedom of religion: China, Saudi Arabia, and North Korea.
Posted by: Brian O'Neill | 2005-06-11 7:49:57 AM
Well, Brian - I disagree with you. China is not fascist. In a traditional fascist state, the gov't IS powerful, because fascism rejects gov't by the people and focuses on a mythic entity, called The State. (Read Mussolini/Gentile's definition of fascism).
In China, the gov't is powerful but the difference between a traditional fascist gov't and China's 'in-between' communism..and..what I say is an emerging democracy in China..is that the Chinese focus of reality has always been local rather than central. That's quite unique to China, and is one reason, I claim, why it didn't collapse as did the Soviet Union, within communism, but is moving past it, by itself. This localism is also a key reason why I think that democracy is emerging in China. As in the Middle East, it can't happen overnight..but, I'll claim it is happening.
No, China is not a random governance, which your statement that "All temporary income, property, familial ties and pseudo-rights are only enjoyed by the grace of the pleasure of the Chinese Communist Party" would imply. Your statement implies that there are no laws or rules, just personal agendas. No country could operate this way for long.
There is most certainly corruption, there are bribes to officials if you want your visas, etc..but that doesn't remove the reality that there are laws.
No, I don't think that a 'best measure of a free country' is religious freedom. My reason for this is that I don't think that religion is definitive of a capacity to think scientifically. And, when I am considering the economic strength of a society, I place far more emphasis on scientific knowledge than I do on religious knowledge. I think that one of the best measures of freedom is intellectual and operational freedom. Can you, scientifically, dissent and innovate? The Chinese are rapidly moving into the top levels of scientific exploration.
And I'll repeat. What I think is scary is the movement into the brain-dead slush of the welfare state socialism of the EU and Canada.
Posted by: ET | 2005-06-11 8:16:30 AM
ET says “This localism is also a key reason why I think that democracy is emerging in China.”
Localism is another good reason why Canada should decentralize.
My wife and I went to an estate planning session this week, yawn, but the interesting thing is how competitive the tax structures are becoming amongst the provinces. A low of 38% marginal rate in Alberta to a high of 53% in Newfoundland. Even BC has dropped from the highest in the country to low 40’s, which is why it’s becoming a haven for baby boomer retirement (plus warmer weather).
Anyway, my point is: tax competitiveness and health care competitiveness amongst the provinces may save the day for Canada. Provided we can pry the powers away from the central planners in Ottawa.
Posted by: nomdenet | 2005-06-11 8:55:26 AM
I agree that "What...is scary is the movement into the brain-dead slush of the welfare state socialism of the EU and Canada."
Just as the Republic of Vietnam was "lost" on CBS and US campuses rather than on the battlefield (i.e. internal rot is more damaging than external threats), our weaknesses could prove more fatal than the tyrannies' strengths.
Posted by: Brian O'Neill | 2005-06-11 4:09:36 PM
You wrote that I implied "that there are no laws or rules, just personal agendas" in the PRC.
Not so. They have plenty of laws. Laws alone don't make or define a society or a civilization.
The constitution of the PRC makes it clear that, just as I wrote above, "China is not, de jure, in any way whatsoever a capitalist country. The individual there has absolutely ZERO rights. All temporary income, property, familial ties and pseudo-rights are only enjoyed by the grace of the pleasure of the Chinese Communist Party."
The people have absolutely no inherent "right" to have or do anything.
(Even non-politically-correct thought is theoretically forbidden, according to the constitution.)
This is one of the reasons that freedom of religion is one of the best indicators of human freedom (probably the best). Because withhout freedom of religion, it is the government that defines human reality. This is the lowest and most offensive form of tyranny.
The government of the PRC (i.e. the Chinese Communist Party) "guided by Mau Zedong-Deng Xiaoping-Zhang Zeming thought" determines what is human reality, and commands all expression throughout the empire in all media and in the entirety of the education system.
This governing entity rejects that human beings have any inherent worth.
The concept that we are created in the image and likeness of God is anathema to the CCP.
Re: "The Chinese are rapidly moving into the top levels of scientific exploration."
I doubt that. Science is not synonomous with technical achievements. And even most of these technical achievements are simply coppied from western models (inc. via espionage). Besides that, both the USSR and Nazi Germany were significantly more scientifically and technologically advanced, relative to their times, than the PRC is (or likely will ever be). I'm sure that Israel and Taiwan are more scientifically advanced than the PRC is.
The physicist and scientific philosopher Li Feng (now a refugee in, of course, the USA) recognized that the PRC will never be a center for significant scientific achievement because there is little or no profound understanding of the nature of reality.
Speculation about this matter is unlikely in the first place, due to the widespread government-enforced ignorance, and, when it does occur, is discouraged or punished by the state.
I understood Fascism to be the alliance of Big Government, Big Industry, and Big Unions, all dedicated to the advancement of The State/Nation.
This well-describes the dominant political philosophy of the post-Deng PRC, IMHO.
That's why I wrote that, "China IS best described as a fascist state, even though the government has more power than in traditional fascist regimes."
I meant that now all unions are subordinate to the government, and the government is biggest player in business and industry. As the government GRANTS further autonomy to workers, investors, entrepeneurs and business-owners, will just lead to further "fascisization". This is also why the CCP has decided to co-opt the entrepeneurial and merchant "classes" by granting them membership in the CCP.
The only way there will be an end to this processes is through conversion to God, revolution , or military defeat.
With all respect, I think you have little or no appreciation of how important our Christian and Jewish heritage has been in allowing us to even think about such concepts as freedom of will and freedom of thought and conscience.
Your comments, "I don't think that religion is definitive of a capacity to think scientifically," and "when I am considering the economic strength of a society, I place far more emphasis on scientific knowledge than I do on religious knowledge," reveal, IMHO, an idolotrous adherence to the religion of materialism. i.e. You are virtually, to all extents and purpose, a Marxist.
The PRC will never be "scientific" because their government does not value truth.
"The truth shall set you free."
God bless you.
Posted by: Brian O'Neill | 2005-06-11 4:11:48 PM
"All temporary income, property, familial ties and pseudo-rights are only enjoyed by the grace of the pleasure of the Chinese Communist Party."
"All temporary income, property, familial ties and pseudo-rights are only enjoyed by the grace of the Chinese Communist Party."
Posted by: Brian O'Neill | 2005-06-11 4:13:53 PM
Nope, Brian, I disagree.
It is naive of you to equate science with materialism and Marxism. It is also ignorant of you to call me a Marxist. You are essentially saying that someone who is an atheist and promotes science is a Marxist. That's ridiculous. Do you know what Marxism is really all about? I also think that you don't know much about science.
I strongly disagree that freedom of religion is an indicator of human freedom. You state "Because withhout freedom of religion, it is the government that defines human reality. This is the lowest and most offensive form of tyranny"
You are saying that either religion OR the government defines human reality. I reject both methods. In my view, human reality is defined by science and philosophy, which both have knowledge bases based on reason and observation, not religion.
You are obviously a strongly religious person and will, of course, disagree with me.
Yes, science is synonymous with technical achievements. After all, technology depends on an accurate understanding of physics, chemistry, biology, of engineering. No, the Chinese technologies are not copied from Western models. I go to a reasonable number of international conferences, scientific ones, and a fair number of participants are Chinese. They are particularly big in computer science, physics, biochemisty, electrical engineering, robotics and artificial intelligence...oh - and geographic science (I just happened to be browsing a May issue of Science, the Journal of AAAS (American Assoc. for the Advancement of Science)..and saw an article in it on monsoon links to solar changes an climate)...by several people in China.
I don't think that you have any conception of China and its scientific realities. You can't say that the PRC will 'never be' technologically advanced. It already is..and is increasing that ability. Your 'sureness' about Taiwan and Israel are speculation..
You are quite wrong in your definition of fascism. It is not about big government, big industries and big unions. That's socialism. Sounds very similar to Canada - we have big gov't, big gov't funded industries and big unions. There are different versions of fascism, but they aren't focused around the worker, economics or classes, but around the nation as an 'organic Will'.
No, I don't accept that the Judeo-Christian heritage has enabled the west to think about free will, freedom of thought etc. Instead, what caused this focus on individualism and the privileging of individual thought over collectivism, was the rise in population of the West (due to its rich ecology)..which led to a NEED for 'deviant' thought, for questioning rather than faith, for exploration rather than acceptance.
I'm sure you will disagree with me, because you are religious - and I am not.
Posted by: ET | 2005-06-11 4:54:11 PM
"It is naive of you to equate science with materialism and Marxism."
I never did any such thing. Just the opposite. I thought it was pretty clear that I was saying that science is essentially a religious endeavour, since it is a quest for the Truth. The concept of A Truth is a religious concept.
Posted by: Brian O'Neill | 2005-06-11 4:59:18 PM
"You are essentially saying that someone who is an atheist and promotes science is a Marxist."
No. I made it clear that Marxism is not scientific.
Posted by: Brian O'Neill | 2005-06-11 5:00:14 PM
Also, I doubt that there exists such a thing as an athiest.
Posted by: Brian O'Neill | 2005-06-11 5:01:01 PM
o you even realize how arrogant this is: "human reality is defined by science and philosophy, which both have knowledge bases based on reason and observation, not religion."
As if religion is not based on reason and observation.
Posted by: Brian O'Neill | 2005-06-11 5:05:30 PM
Re: "I strongly disagree that freedom of religion is an indicator of human freedom. ... You are saying that either religion OR the government defines human reality"
First of all it's bizarre that you don't see freedom of religion is an indicator of human freedom.
And I didn't say that "either religion OR the government defines human reality". What I said, very plainly, was that in the absence of freedom of religion, where this freedom is denied by the State, then naturally it will be the State that determines for the populace what is science and history. This is obviously the case everywhere that religious freedom has been denied.
Posted by: Brian O'Neill | 2005-06-11 5:11:02 PM
I said you'd disagree with me!
No, you did not say in your original post that 'science is essentially a religious endeavour' since it is a quest for truth...and that the 'concept of a truth is a religious concept'.
In reply to my statement: "I don't think that religion is definitive of a capacity to think scientifically," and "when I am considering the economic strength of a society, I place far more emphasis on scientific knowledge than I do on religious knowledge,"
You replied that the above statement reveals: " IMHO, an idolotrous adherence to the religion of materialism. i.e. You are virtually, to all extents and purpose, a Marxist. "
That's a clear equation of :science=materialism=Marxism.
Of course, I disagree that science is a religious endeavour. You define the search for truth as a religious act. I don't.
Speaking of arrogance, I think it is quite arrogant of you to deny my statement about myself as an atheist. You 'doubt that there exists such a thing as an atheist'.
I exist. I am an atheist. It is unreasonable and arrogant of you to tell me that I cannot exist as such.
So- we can't agree, and we'll have to leave it at that.
By the way, your statement that "The only way there will be an end to this processes is through conversion to God, revolution , or military defeat" is, in my view, rather scary. The Islamic fundamentalists say the same thing about the West.
Posted by: ET | 2005-06-11 5:19:12 PM
I wrote, "Your comments, "I don't think that religion is definitive of a capacity to think scientifically," and "when I am considering the economic strength of a society, I place far more emphasis on scientific knowledge than I do on religious knowledge," reveal, IMHO, an idolotrous adherence to the religion of materialism. i.e. You are virtually, to all extents and purpose, a Marxist."
Your comments clearly reveal that your thought processes are the result of many many years of Marxist indoctrination and brainwashing.
Of course I hope you will one day you will be able to overcome that.
Even while you appear to reject Marxism, your positions promote it.
You wrote that you have no opinion about the validity or worth of "gay marriage."
I suggest that if you reread Marx and Engel's Manifesto, especially their remarks on the "bourgois" family, and how one must simply ridicule traditional beliefs when one is not in a position to reason against them, you would see a fair prediction of our present Canadian reality.
I'm sure that H.G. Wells and G.B. Shaw didn't agree that they were Lenin's "useful idiots".
Nevertheless, they were.
Posted by: Brian O'Neill | 2005-06-11 5:21:25 PM
This is typical "Marxist thought":
"I don't accept that the Judeo-Christian heritage has enabled the west to think about free will, freedom of thought etc. Instead, what caused this focus on individualism and the privileging of individual thought over collectivism, was the rise in population of the West (due to its rich ecology)..which led to a NEED for 'deviant' thought, for questioning rather than faith, for exploration rather than acceptance."
Free will is not a Western concept.
Posted by: Brian O'Neill | 2005-06-11 5:24:20 PM
Re: "Questioning rather than faith ... exploration rather than acceptance."
Questioning is not the opposite of faith.
Exploration cannot take place without acceptence.
Here you reaveal a postmodernist attitude.
Postmodernism is a polite word for dissillusioned Marxism.
Posted by: Brian O'Neill | 2005-06-11 5:26:31 PM
Brian - don't fling words around when you don't understand their meaning. You don't understand fascism, socialism, Marxism. (I'm against all three because they are all collectivist ideologies). Yet, you fling them around like stones. Equally, I doubt if you understand postmodernism.
Postmodernism, which I also reject, is not 'disillusioned Marxism'. And my rejection of faith (in god) is NOT postmodernism.
Faith in what? Acceptance of what? Why do you insist that people should be like you? I certainly don't insist that you should drop your religious beliefs!
Now - you conclude that I've been through many years of Marxist brainwashing! Incredible. Please explain when, where, how. Don't insult people, Brian. Don't tell people who think differently from you that they have been 'brainwashed'; that they are 'Marxists', postmodernists..terms which you are using to insult them.
You talk about freedom of the individual and yet, you are objecting to my freedom of thought.
And don't treat me with such a patronizing, condescending and superior manner that you 'Hope that one day you'll be able to overcome that". What a belitting and denigrating thing to say about some else's beliefs.
What's your point about bringing in Wells and Shaw and your definition of them as 'useful idiots'? Is that how you are defining me?
Oh- and where am I ridiculing traditional beliefs? Point out the ridicule please.
Again, don't insult people and accept that other people might have an equal intelligence and knowledge as you...and still...might think very differently and come to different conclusions.
Posted by: ET | 2005-06-11 5:43:06 PM
Re: "Questioning rather than faith ... exploration rather than acceptance."
You have obviously been heavily brainwashed.
I suggest you read the following.
Genesis, Chapter 32:
(24) ... Jacob was left alone, and a man wrestled with him till daybreak. (25) When the man saw that he could not overpower him, he touched the socket of Jacob's hip so that his hip was wrenched as he wrestled with the man. (26) Then the man said, "Let me go, for it is daybreak."
But Jacob replied, "I will not let you go unless you bless me."
(27) The man asked him, "What is your name?"
"Jacob," he answered.
(28) Then the man said, "Your name will no longer be Jacob, but Israel ["He struggles with God"], because you have struggled with God and with men and have overcome."
Posted by: Brian O'Neill | 2005-06-11 5:44:24 PM
Re: "You did not say in your original post that 'science is essentially a religious endeavour' since it is a quest for truth...and that the 'concept of a truth is a religious concept'."
I never claimed to have said that.
What I wrote was, "I thought it was pretty clear that I was saying that science is essentially a religious endeavour, since it is a quest for the Truth. The concept of A Truth is a religious concept."
In other words, it semms to me that it was clearly implied.
Posted by: Brian O'Neill | 2005-06-11 5:49:17 PM
Of course postmodernism is nothing but disillusioned Marxism.
It began and developed primarily in France, among dissilusioned communists, after Krushchev's denunciation of Stalin, and the split in the French Communist party. It's greatest boost towards mainstream respectability occured after tha Soviet invasion of Afghanistan.
Marxism was more than anything a rejection of Christ and of the God of Israel.
Postmodernism was Marxists saying, "If we can't believe in our new God anymore, then nobody can believe in anything."
Posted by: Brian O'Neill | 2005-06-11 5:56:19 PM
I didn't insult you.
I said that "you have obviously been heavily brainwashed."
You said as much yourself in your previous postings.
I suggest you read Malcolm Muggeridge on his days in the USSR for The Gaurdian in the 1930's on the assorted "useful idiots" found thereabout.
It doesn't indicate a lack of intellectual ability. Just the opposite.
It means people who politely and intelligently, but unwittingly, argue on behalf of their own destruction.
I assure you that when the likes of Warren Kinsella or Svend Robinson hear you arguing so passionately against how "gay marriage" is being foisted on Canada, but then you say you don't care one way or another about marriage itself, and that you are an athiest, they turn to each other and say, "Oh, what a useful idiot."
Posted by: Brian O'Neill | 2005-06-11 6:07:01 PM
Re: "Your statement that "The only way there will be an end to this process [of the increasing fascisization of the PRC] is through conversion to God, revolution , or military defeat" is, in my view, rather scary. The Islamic fundamentalists say the same thing about the West."
I think that this comment is really beneath you.
My original comment was an analysis of the long-term survival prospects of the PRC. In my opinion the PRC cannot survive for more than another generation. The rot is too deep. The inequities are too glaring. The hypocricy is so plain to see that the people wion't tolerate it.
The question is whether Chinese civilization will be renewed by a spiritual and moral rebirth, by political revolution, or by the military defeat and loss of face.
Your comment, on the other hand, sounds just like the "equivalence" arguments of a Maureen Dowd, post-9/11. Like I said, beneath you.
Posted by: Brian O'Neill | 2005-06-11 6:15:39 PM
Re: "Questioning rather than faith ... exploration rather than acceptance."
Genesis 32: (24) ... Jacob was left alone, and a man wrestled with him till daybreak. (25) When the man saw that he could not overpower him, he touched the socket of Jacob's hip so that his hip was wrenched as he wrestled with the man. (26) Then the man said, "Let me go, for it is daybreak." But Jacob replied, "I will not let you go unless you bless me." (27) The man asked him, "What is your name?" "Jacob," he answered. (28) Then the man said, "Your name will no longer be Jacob, but Israel ["He struggles with God"], because you have struggled with God and with men and have overcome."
Posted by: Brian O'Neill | 2005-06-11 6:17:30 PM
Who can stop the rise and rise of China? The communists, of course
By Mark Steyn 12/06/2005
China is "One Country, Two Systems". On the one hand, there's the China the world gushes over - the economic powerhouse that makes just about everything in your house. On the other, there's the largely unreconstructed official China - a regime that, while no longer as zealously ideological as it once was, nevertheless clings to the old techniques beloved of paranoid totalitarianism: lie and bluster in public, arrest and torture in private.
The Communist Party is the bull in its own China shop. It's unclear, for example, whether they have the discipline to be able to resist moving against Taiwan in the next couple of years.
Mao...was the biggest mass murderer of all time.... The standard line of Sinologists is that, while still perfunctorily genuflecting to his embalmed corpse in Tiananmen Square, his successors have moved on.... But Maoists with stock options are still Maoists - especially when they owe their robust portfolios to a privileged position within the state apparatus.
China hasn't invented or discovered anything of significance in half a millennium, but the careless assumption that intellectual property is something to be stolen rather than protected shows why. If you're a resource-poor nation (as China is), long-term prosperity comes from liberating the creative energies of your people - and Beijing still has no interest in that.
India...is advancing faster than China toward a fully-developed economy - one that creates its own ideas.
China [is] a better bet for the future than Russia or the European Union...Which is damning with faint praise: trapped in a demographic death spiral, Russia and Europe have no future at all.
China won't advance to the First World with its present borders intact.
Posted by: Brian O'Neill | 2005-06-11 6:44:16 PM
This is China:
In an article in the 1932 Enciclopedia Italiana, written by Giovanni Gentile and attributed to Benito Mussolini, fascism is described as a system in which "The State not only is authority which governs and molds individual wills with laws and values of spiritual life, but it is also power which makes its will prevail abroad.... For the Fascist, everything is within the State and... neither individuals nor groups are outside the State.... For Fascism, the State is an absolute, before which individuals or groups are only relative...."
Mussolini, in a speech delivered on October 28, 1925, stated the following maxim that encapsulates the fascist philosophy: "Tutto nello Stato, niente al di fuori dello Stato, nulla contro lo Stato." ("Everything in the State, nothing outside the State, nothing against the State".) Therefore, he reasoned, all individuals' business is the state's business, and the state's existence is the sole duty of the individual.
Posted by: Brian O'Neill | 2005-06-11 6:49:09 PM
This is similar to Post-Deng China:
"In 1926 Mussolini created the National Council of Corporations, divided into guilds of employers and employees, tasked with managing 22 sectors of the economy. The guilds subsumed both labor unions and management, but were heavily weighted in favor of the corporations and their owners. The moneyed classes in return helped him change the country's laws."
In Italy, labour and business were co-opted.
In the PRC, labour and business are co-opted as soon as they begin to believe they can act autonomously. The party remains in power because the middle-class elites fear any disruption that may lose them whatever small favours they've received.
Posted by: Brian O'Neill | 2005-06-11 6:52:53 PM
This is the PRC:
"The Fascist State lays claim to rule in the economic field no less than in others; it makes its action felt throughout the length and breadth of the country by means of its corporate, social, and educational institutions, and all the political, economic, and spiritual forces of the nation, organised in their respective associations, circulate within the State."
- Giovanni Gentile, "A Doctrine of Fascism" Enciclopedia Italiana, 1932, p. 41.
Posted by: Brian O'Neill | 2005-06-11 6:56:48 PM
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