Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Can the Monster be Caged?

I came across an excellent speech on HaoHao Report by a Chinese writer Murong Xuecun (慕容雪村). Just as I'm beginning to lose all hope in the strong nation, Mr. Murong's speech has swayed me a little bit in the direction that there is perhaps still a silver lining. Or is there?


Here's the link to Mr. Murong's speech (in both Chinese and English):-

http://www.scribd.com/doc/73185074/Murong-Xuecun-Oslo-Speech

Some trenchant passages:-

"In my country, the government claims to have eradicated classes, but in reality, class divisions are glaringly obvious. The highest class enjoys exclusively produced foods while the lower classes are left to consume contaminated and dangerous products. Children of the dominant class study at opulent private schools, while children of the second-class study at ordinary schools. The third class attend shabby schools for migrant workers and the fourth class, well, they don’t get to go to school at all."

"In my country, informing on others is encouraged. The government has a secret dossier on every single citizen which records everything about us until the day we die—from innocent remarks about us to unsubstantiated accusations as well as many things we don’t even know about ourselves. Secret agents in factories, schools and residential neighbourhoods covertly record everything people say and do. The atmosphere is oppressive—people do not trust the government, employees do not trust employers, students don’t trust teachers, and wives do not trust husbands."

"In my country, writing is a dangerous occupation. People are sent to prison for writing essays, or saying a few words of truth. Writers are not allowed to talk about history, or to criticise the present, let alone fantasize about the future. Many words cannot be written, many things cannot be spoken, and many issues cannot be mentioned. Every book has to go through a rigid censorship regime before it can be published. Many books are banned in my country, and then become bestsellers overseas."

"My country has one of the largest bureaucracies in the world. Most of these bureaucrats are either bribing or taking bribes. Power is being abused in every way imaginable and turned into a money-generating tool. According to publicly available reports, enormous amounts of public funds are wasted on sumptuous banquets, luxury trips and expensive cars provided to these bureaucrats. We are talking about 900 billion yuan or over US$140 billion a year. Some may ask: Why don’t the taxpayers say no to this practice? I’m sorry, the concept of taxpayers’ rights doesn’t exist in my country. All we have is the term 'the people'."

“This rotten system is the mongrel of Stalinist-Maoism and Imperial Chinese political culture, a cross-breed of the rule of the jungle with traditional Chinese trickery and communism. Decades later, this creature now has become a monster. This monster is vain, tyrannical and arrogant. It never admits to mistakes. It destroys people in the name of justice and rehabilitates them, also in the name of justice. It takes credit for everything positive, and blames others for all failures. It wants to lord over everything and only tolerates one faith, faith in itself. This monster only allows praise to one thing, praise to itself. It owns every newspaper, every school, and every temple. Without its permission, even flowers may not bloom.”

"Despite hardship, more and more Chinese people now are aware of their responsibilities. They break the silence, speak the truth, and calmly make suggestions. Some are suffering for their actions but refuse to be cowered or silenced."

In my opinion, the whole text is worth a thorough read.



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