The demonization of China

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epaulo13 epaulo13's picture

..while i post this i do not support us/western attacks on china.

Effort to Form Union in China Meets Ferocious Repression

A group of workers in China’s manufacturing hub of Shenzhen tried something very rare this summer—they attempted to follow the legal process to set up a union.

University students lent tremendous support. But their employer and the Chinese government cracked down on both the workers and the students with firings, detention, surveillance, and the threat of jail sentences.

Workers at the welding-equipment manufacturer Shenzhen Jasic Technology initiated the process of forming a union in May. Among their biggest complaints were arbitrary fines and the company’s underpayment into government-run funds that help workers pay rent or buy houses.

Workers followed the law in setting up a union, including requesting and receiving permission from upper-level unions affiliated with the government-controlled All-China Federation of Trade Unions, the only unions authorized in China.

In response to a rising tide of labor disputes, since the mid-2000s the ACFTU has built up more workplace branches, especially in foreign-invested firms, through a top-down effort. But these unions are notoriously ineffective at representing workers, focusing instead on organizing recreational activities and providing small holiday gifts. They mainly serve to preempt organizing.

quote:

CRACKDOWN

Disturbed by the outpouring of support, on July 27 the government arrested 29 Jasic workers and supporters, accusing them of “picking quarrels and provoking trouble,” a criminal charge often used by the government to suppress protests.

In response, workers and students formed a support group to demand that the government release all the detainees and respect the workers’ right to unionize. Thousands of workers and students signed online petitions.

Xinhua News, the government’s mouthpiece, has attempted to scapegoat two labor NGOs (similar to worker centers in the U.S.)—Shenzhen-based Dagongzhe and Hong Kong-based Worker Empowerment—for the workers’ actions. The government arrested a staff member and the registered agent of Dagongzhe. In 2015, the Chinese government launched a crackdown on groups like these, smearing them as foreign-funded organizations attempting to undermine the country’s stability.

Before dawn on August 24, riot police with full gear and shields broke into the apartment where members of the support group were staying and arrested more than 50 students and workers.

On the same day, two workers involved in the support group and two activists from the website “Pioneer,” which had been releasing frequent updates on the struggle, were arrested in Beijing.

epaulo13 epaulo13's picture

..in solidarity

Join Live: Chinese Students and Labor Activists Battle Crackdown at Jasic

Thursday, February 21
8pm EST / 5pm PST

In the past six months, over 50 workers, students, and labor activists in China have been arrested or disappeared by the government. Their crime? Supporting workers at the Jasic welding equipment factory in their legal efforts to form a union.

The Jasic struggle has received tremendous support from student and labor activists across China—one of the few labor struggles marked by a strong student presence during the past 40 years of the country’s economic reforms. Publicity through Chinese social media platforms has overcome the mainstream media blackout on strikes and labor disputes in the increasingly repressive political environment under President Xi Jinping.

Yet the Jasic campaign has also faced the most severe political repression of any labor action in the past decade, as the Xi administration cracks down on labor NGOs, feminist activists, and human rights lawyers.

Join Labor Notes for a webinar on Thursday, February 21 at 8pm EST/5pm PST to hear more about the Jasic struggle, the conditions facing labor activists in China, and the importance of international solidarity with Chinese workers and students.

WWWTT
NDPP

'Between You and Me, We Call Them Predators'...

http://rabble.ca/comment/5543151#comment-5543151

"Even as she admitted they have not yet bought land..."

Under a prolonged and sustained demonization campaign this becomes increasingly acceptable. That no apology was proferred for this ugly racist slur is very telling. Even more outrageous given it's a euro-settler on stolen land.

WWWTT

Looks like a couple posters still don’t feel comfortable and/or like how I worded this thread opener so to save another thread drifting into this one I’ll give it a bump. 

First off, I’m not changing anything! Secondly I’m not apologizing for anything either. I prefer this approach 

Sean in Ottawa

WWWTT wrote:

Looks like a couple posters still don’t feel comfortable and/or like how I worded this thread opener so to save another thread drifting into this one I’ll give it a bump. 

First off, I’m not changing anything! Secondly I’m not apologizing for anything either. I prefer this approach 

At issue here is you made a sweeping accusation against other posters to kick off this thread linking them to racism and double standards. This thread has been allowed to continue for some unknown reason.

"There’s a double standard used against China. And even posters here at babble (not mentioning any names, you know who you are!) are comfortable with holding this double standard."

"Bordering on racism, if not full blown, this is getting uglier. And as China’s influential sphere grows, the imperialist old guard grows enraged."

Yes, you can accuse other people here of whatever you like. But you should identify the posts and say how they meet your condemnation as that is what this is.

Damn right you should apologize.

More to the point is this thread is clearly designed to silence people from any criticism of the Chinese government. You could have opened a fair debate about media bias or even about general population bias without the smear about people posting here. If you had the people you smeared may have even agreed with you. I would have. I believe that there are things to critize about China -- things that on a site like this we ought to criticize -- things that can affect Canada even. But I would absolutely acknowledge the racism and imperialism in apporaches to China.

My problem is that I do not want to agree with you  and support you now becuase I cannot make my remarks balanced -- I will be demonized unless I whitewash them into praise for China suggesting that attacks on China that may be part racism and part imperialism do not also include real concerns that are neither racist nor imperialist. The comments about racism and imperialism are unfair if they do not note that the Chinese government also engages in problematic behaviour that can be legitimately criticized.

Now as a point of fact people upthread say China does not engage in invading others. This is news to some of its neighbours who consider what is in their sea territories to be as important as their land territories. I will not provide many individual articles becuase you can each get your own sources but google the nine dash line and see a map. This line is based on the historical sea domination of China from Ming times. It overlaps the sea territories of several countries. China is building reef islands artificially and militarizing them. They are confronting fishing vessles from these other countries in sea areas closer to those countries than to China. It is problematic to exclude this massive sea claim from accusations and debates about invasion:

https://e.vnexpress.net/news/news/chinese-ships-were-invading-vietnamese...

The debate upthread about Tibet is another problem as it is difficult to agree with either side. Tibet's claim to being completely independent are poor. For most of the last millenium they have been within the Chinese empire. China's claim that they were part of China is also questionable though: the China they were part of was a different country and with a different relationship. During the time they were part of China before the 1912 revolution, Tibet also governed itself. It was more like a semi-autonomous province or vassel state. They were not part of a unitary centralized China as that did not extend to them. Important to them, China did not control historically Tibet's education (such as it was) or religion. In the last century China did invade them and they defended themselves and many were machine-gunned -- it was not a warm welcome. When you consider the extremes about the Tibetan debate you can see in many respects that both sides are not being fully honest. I like to stay out of this debate often because both sides dislike what I have to say based on my understanding of history. (By the way the Tibetans once razed the capital of China, at Nanjing I think around the 1100s. Later both countries were swept by the Mongols around the 13th century (If I remember the dates well). China and Tibet have a complicated history. The religion in Tibet is not all a positive experience either. It is a difficult debate to get into as you may find it dominated by two opposing and often incorrect perspectives.

Even Taiwan which comes up at times has a more complicated history with the mainland than people are often aware of. Taiwan has spent more of its history outside China than in -- A lot more. In fact China has only briefly held Taiwan in a state that controlled the mainland and Taiwan at the same time.

The question here is are we allowed to have real and balanced discussion about China or a whitewashed praising of the CPC only?

If we are not allowed the balanced discussion (meaning people can debate it and not always agree legitimately without automatic accusations of racism and imperialism) why are we allowed any discussion at all?

Comments here may be imperialistic or racist even if the individuals are not -- in this case you identify the post and comment specifically and level the accusation and support it. Saying that some people responding about China have said mean things that are not politically correct and piling on about it is a silencing tactic.

WWWTT

Hi Sean in Ottawa

Here’s an editorial pointer. Split up your comments. Your last comment covers all good debate issues but should be done in say 3 comments.  

When time permits I’ll come back to this thread thanks 

kropotkin1951 kropotkin1951's picture

Sean the problem is perception. I don't disagree with what you said about Chinese history and I am well aware that Chinese history is a series of imperial states that controlled varying amounts of land and peoples in various periods. However I also agree with the premise of this thread which is that China is demonized in our Canadian media and on this board as well.

The opening post of this thread was not specific to you but you CHOOSE to presume your views are included as nearly racist.  WWWTT was wrong when he thought that the real racists would know who they are and pay attention. Unfortunately the real racists on this board couldn't care less and people like you think he is talking about you personally when he is likely not. When I turn on the CBC every piece they have about China makes me want to scream because of the bias and NATO imperialism. That is what I see in our media and it is demonization.

Mobo2000

"When I turn on the CBC every piece they have about China makes me want to scream because of the bias and NATO imperialism. "

This is exactly my reaction as well.  It is infuriating, predictable and incredibly dangerous.

NDPP

US Insists Germany Must Ban Huawei

https://youtu.be/nxlDLEF1iyQ

"The US has threatened German officials that there will be repercussions if Germany allows Chinese telecommunications giant Huawei to particpate in the deployment of 5G."

The bashing of official enemies including by what is styled as legitimate  'criticism' is a standard feature of  Western demonization propaganda campaigns and is designed to encourage and legitimize further animus and hostilities towards the targeted country/government.

Sean in Ottawa

kropotkin1951 wrote:

Sean the problem is perception. I don't disagree with what you said about Chinese history and I am well aware that Chinese history is a series of imperial states that controlled varying amounts of land and peoples in various periods. However I also agree with the premise of this thread which is that China is demonized in our Canadian media and on this board as well.

The opening post of this thread was not specific to you but you CHOOSE to presume your views are included as nearly racist.  WWWTT was wrong when he thought that the real racists would know who they are and pay attention. Unfortunately the real racists on this board couldn't care less and people like you think he is talking about you personally when he is likely not. When I turn on the CBC every piece they have about China makes me want to scream because of the bias and NATO imperialism. That is what I see in our media and it is demonization.

Seems we do agree on a lot here -- however, I do not agree that it is okay to start a thread that seems to attack posters and not identify them.

I do not agree that he did not mean to include me since he has made the same types of comments to me directly in threads in the past and has refused to back them up. I think the thread snekks of an attempt to silence any criticism of the Chinese government on the boards here.

I agree that the media generally has a heavy bias against China.

I do not think this board does. -- certainly not to justify a thread about it. There are more people who will defend China without any supporting eveidence than who will attack China. The conversation about China includes things that might not be fair but so what? The overall conversation HERE is actually balanced. I personally have contributed to balancing it at times by defending China at times as have many others. There is no trend or bias on this site against China worthy of smearing those who question China. For every post critical of China there is at least one supporting China.

The media bias does not justify the tone of the thread that had this you-know-who-you- are stuff -- when people can look and see who the last people who said something about China and were told that they should not. I was one. Even though a couple weeks earlier I had defended China in another discussion.

You say this is about perception -- why are you so confident that yours is right and mine is wrong???

Sean in Ottawa

NDPP wrote:

US Insists Germany Must Ban Huawei

https://youtu.be/nxlDLEF1iyQ

"The US has threatened German officials that there will be repercussions if Germany allows Chinese telecommunications giant Huawei to particpate in the deployment of 5G."

The bashing of official enemies including by what is styled as legitimate  'criticism' is a standard feature of  Western demonization propaganda campaigns and is designed to encourage and legitimize further animus and hostilities towards the targeted country/government.

This is in part backed up by the threat the US is making to charge countries for the US protection at 150% of cost for bases in their countries.

This is not unlike a protection racker either. The US destabilizes the world and is very aggressive. It creates or amplifies the need for protection and then charges for it.

Hopefully countries will identify the US bases they know the US wants and tell them they no longer are welcome there. When the US faces the loss of those they might realize that demanding protection money is not such a good idea after all.

Of course, in some ways there may be a benefit: some countries may elect governments who may be opposed to the US bases and use the bill as an excuse to tell them to take a hike. Others may reduce their need for protection by dealing with their security concerns through diplomacy and adjusted relations (perhaps South Korea to North Korea for example where they might be better able to co-exist with the US gone and both sides much safer).

WWWTT

You know what Sean in Ottawa, every time you complain about the thread tittle, I go back and read it to possibly edit it. But I can’t! After every time I read it I think to myself “yep, we’re good, I’m not changing it!”

Since kropotkin found some kind of fault with it, I really did consider changing it to make it less of a magnet for people to complain about,  if that makes any sense. But if I did, then some punch would be taken away. So sorry, I’m not tinkering with it and we probably spent too much time already debating a thread tittle 

Sean in Ottawa

WWWTT wrote:

You know what Sean in Ottawa, every time you complain about the thread tittle, I go back and read it to possibly edit it. But I can’t! After every time I read it I think to myself “yep, we’re good, I’m not changing it!”

Since kropotkin found some kind of fault with it, I really did consider changing it to make it less of a magnet for people to complain about,  if that makes any sense. But if I did, then some punch would be taken away. So sorry, I’m not tinkering with it and we probably spent too much time already debating a thread tittle 

Huh?

Show me one time that I complained about the thread title!

My point has always been the smear of babblers in the OP.

I have no problem with the issue as it pertains to the media generally. China does not get a bad rap on this site (any negative comment gets responses) and there is no need to attack posters here in any way.

WWWTT

OK sounds like we’re good then. I’m moving on

NDPP

 It is worthwhile to recall there are other China threads including the simple 'China' if one prefers.'The demonization of China' will always be regarded by some here purely as an invitation to do so...

kropotkin1951 kropotkin1951's picture

Sean in Ottawa wrote:

Seems we do agree on a lot here --

You say this is about perception -- why are you so confident that yours is right and mine is wrong???

I don't think yours is wrong only different than mine. It does not have to be either or.

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