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  1. #11
    Emperor/Dictator kyuuei's Avatar
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    ^ I was thinking the same. If he thinks the Chinese do well under that government, it's not the end of the world. I think Meta and I agree on something once again.
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  2. #12
    Senior Member lowtech redneck's Avatar
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    Its understandable that this is a big deal (assuming few people were aware of the context) in Hong Kong and Taiwan; the former is having the freedoms it was accustomed to suppressed by China, while the latter is in perpetual danger of forceful annexation by the Mainland. Also, to say that Chinese culture (accusations of "racism" are patently absurd) is incompatible with democracy is to challenge the principles those entities are based on, and gives aid and comfort to a dangerous enemy. Its not exactly the same as some dumb-ass college leftist in the United States espousing admiration for Cuba.

    Also, I would agree that liberal democracy requires enabling conditions (which are apparently already present in Taiwan) to be successful, but I strongly disagree that its not something all countries can and should (gradually) strive for.

    All that said, it does seem that his comments were taken out of context, however.

  3. #13
    Filthy Apes! Kalach's Avatar
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    Um...

    massive simplifications ahead...

    Rule of Law is not a cultural item in China. It's really not. To the majority of Chinese living on the mainland, assuming they could somehow have had access, Jackie's comments probably aren't all that offensive.

    What counts as corruption in a democratic society isn't endemic in China so much as it is systemic. That's how everyone here believes things roll. It is how the majority of the people get by. There really isn't such a thing as following the rules and minding your own business. You need "friends." And people really do believe they are safe only because their friends are around them holding them back. It genuinely is a culture of "unity" not "individuality."

    However, actually dangerous, solely self-serving corruption levels are at an all-time high. What was once the purview of old men working alone and nearing retirement is now handled by much younger men in groups, sometimes whole local governments knowingly colluding together. It is suggested by some observers (IDK-who) that the time is coming when the level of corruption extant will be functionally incompatible with actual government.

    So, is this a historical circumstance brought on by the superb destruction wrought by the Japanese, the Communists, Mao and the Chinese people themselves.. or is it a cultural norm as it has survived through extreme times? And what would happen if it were all to become democratic?



    And on the other hand, what Chinese people believe culturally and what they live practically might well be really different. It's a Leninist market economy over here!

  4. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by lowtech redneck View Post
    Its understandable that this is a big deal (assuming few people were aware of the context) in Hong Kong and Taiwan; the former is having the freedoms it was accustomed to suppressed by China, while the latter is in perpetual danger of forceful annexation by the Mainland. Also, to say that Chinese culture (accusations of "racism" are patently absurd) is incompatible with democracy is to challenge the principles those entities are based on, and gives aid and comfort to a dangerous enemy. Its not exactly the same as some dumb-ass college leftist in the United States espousing admiration for Cuba.

    Also, I would agree that liberal democracy requires enabling conditions (which are apparently already present in Taiwan) to be successful, but I strongly disagree that its not something all countries can and should (gradually) strive for.

    All that said, it does seem that his comments were taken out of context, however.


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  5. #15
    ^He pronks, too! Magic Poriferan's Avatar
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    Where to start...

    I find the response to his comments melodramatic, to say the least. His statement didn't seem all that strong to me, on the face of it.

    Then of course, it might be true that he was taken out of context, as his spokesman said. It looks like he was. In that case we can't even know what he was really saying, so outrage is premature.

    Then there's the fact that he's entitled to his opinion. Different people have their own opinions, and different cultures have their own values. You want to disagree with him, that's fine, but I don't think he's earned any punishment with what he said.
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  6. #16
    movin melodies kiddykat's Avatar
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    I'm thinking it's a way to save a spot in his career?

    Some people have a public vs. private persona.. so maybe it was a way to appease the current government?

    If I needed business contacts/networking, it would totally feel like walking on eggshells- hence, that is why I would not accept some kind of national fame, or public attention, period. *eek*

  7. #17
    Minister of Propagandhi ajblaise's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Viv View Post
    I'm thinking it's a way to save a spot in his career?

    Some people have a public vs. private persona.. so maybe it was just a way to appease the current government?

    If I needed business contacts/networking, it would totally feel like walking on eggshells- hence, that is why I would not accept some kind of national fame.
    I saw a documentary on the subject a little while ago, and it talked about the Chinese being fairly tolerate and supportive of the amount the power the Chinese government wields. They understand it as a temporary necessity and support the government to slowly add democracy and freedom as the country becomes ready for it. It surprised me a bit.

  8. #18
    ^He pronks, too! Magic Poriferan's Avatar
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    Wouldn't surprise me.
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  9. #19
    movin melodies kiddykat's Avatar
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    ^^Cool. I guess I'm in no position to comment since I don't know what life is like over there. I could see that as a real possibility..

  10. #20
    Senior Member lowtech redneck's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Hap View Post
    Kalach is totally right .
    Then how do you (or he) explain Taiwan? "Chinese culture" is not a monolith, but the aspects that are held in common between the citizens of Taiwan and the People's Republic of China are apparently not a (long-term) impediment to the attainment of liberal democracy. Jackie Chan was percieved to have been commenting on Chinese people in general, not the mainland specifically.

    As for ajblaise's comments, that's the major reason the "Communist" government has stressed nationalism so much in recent years-so that the people value the unity and power of the state over all other considerations, thereby making the position of the government secure so long as economic growth continues and separatists elements are suppressed. I suspect, however, that the Chinese government (the hopes of ordinary citizens notwithstanding) won't relax its grip on power until the alternative is to lose their heads-which would require rebellion from within the military organs of the state.

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