Happy Birthday People’s Republic of China!

October 1, 2009, is the 60th annivesary of the declaration of the People’s Republic of China.

After escpaing Mao’s tyranical and entirely braindead administration, China was fortunate enough to be guided by several wise leaders in a row: Deng xiaoping, Jiang Zemin, and now Hu Jintao.

Deng began the “economic revolution.” Jiang was the first Chinese leader to peacefully step down. Hu will be the next.

While China has a long way to go, under China’s “open door” policy more people have been lifted out of poverty than by any other regime in the history of our species.

Along the way, China was blessed by politicians who tried (in different ways) to stop or at least mitigate the trainwreck of Mao’s tyranny… these include President Liu Shaoqi, Prime Minister Zhou Enlai, and First Vice Prime Minister Lin Biao.

While this would not have happened without other economic Chinese administrations, such as Chiangs’ KMT in Taiwan and Lee’s PAP in Singapore

That’s an accomplishment.

Some recent news:

Human Rights and the Obama Administration

Today I saw this video on MSNBC, which shows an honor student in South Chicago being beaten to death by local thugs.

Of course, the mother should be charged with child abuse.

What person in their right mind would send a child to education in a Homeland school district? Seriously, considering that simple probability tells us that around 17% of the crowd shown in the video suffer from familial mental retardation, what is an honor student even doing in that environment?

What woman hates her child so much to send him to “school” in a bantustan like south Side Chicago?

Like in apartheid South Africa, zones of many cities in the United States suffer from policies of seperate development. These policies create a segregation of police services, such that youth in ghettos have to form criminal gangs for their mutual protection against others. In the video, the specific criminals, of course, are the thugs that killed the honor student. His mother is of course guilty of child abuse, for allowing her child to grow up in such an environment. More broadly, the government of Chicago and politicians who have benefits from its perks (including Barack Obama) are just as guilty of enabling a racist, evil regime as were men such as P.W. Botha and Mangosuthu Buthelezi.

It is often fashionable to criticize President Hu Jintao of the People’s Republic of China for human rights abuses. Before Americans do this, however, they should consider the role President Barack Obama has (and still) plays in keeping nightmares like South Side Chicago going.

Review of “Nixon and Mao: The Week that Changed the World” by Margaret MacMillan

Yesterday I finished Nixon and Mao: The Week that Changed the World by Margaret MacMillan. As is obvious from the title, it concerns the Nixon-Mao visit of 1972 and the drafting of the Shanghai Communique, which famously includes the cryptic line

The US side declared: The United States acknowledges that all Chinese on either side of the Taiwan Strait maintain there is but one China and that Taiwan is a part of China. The United States Government does not challenge that position

MacMillian emphasizes the unlikely nature of the meeting. It did not have to happen. Less time paced from the closing of US mission in Red China in 1950 and Nixon’s visit in 1971 than has elapsed since the Communist Revolution in Cuba or the Islamic Revolution in Iran. However, because of Nixon, we had relations with China after only 21 years, while much longer than that has past in the cases of Cuba and Iran. Indeed, if the author had access to more recent sources, such as Zhou Enlai: The Last Perfect Revolutionary (tdaxp review), her case would be even more reinforced. Mao began retaliating against those who carried out his orders to make the opening for Nixon almost immediately after Nixon left.

The book is strongest when it focuses on the events surrounding the talks, such as Al Haig‘s preperatory trip to China and the surprisingly prominent role of Chas Freeman (called by his given name of Charles in the book. While Nixon and Mao was written during the recent Bush administration, an updating volume is already desirable. Chas later sold out to the Saudis and Chinese, was railroaded by Nancy Pelosi for his remarks on the Tiananmen Massacre, and subsequently blamed the Jews.

Nixon and Mao contains numerous, if generally small, errors of fact. These rarely impact the main narrative, and are only annoying or noticeable if you know the situation better than MacMillian. As an example of Mao’s “dig deep” campaign, she says that the Communists built massive tunnels from the Great Hall of the People to Zhongnanhai. As these two locations are catty-corner from each other, both the epic nature and timing of this feat are dubious. Some are more serious (generally, anythign concerning Lin Biao), but the most recent information was not available to her at the time, and Lin was dead during the Nixon-Mao talks, anyway.

Nixon and Mao: The Week that Changed the World reads like two books stapled onto each other. The second half of the book feels more like an original text. It is fast-paced, cleanly structured, informative, and valuable. The second half is boring, meandering, full of psychological theorizing, and occasionally duplicitive of the second half. My assumption is that the second half was submitted to the publisher, rejected because it would have been too much of a scholarly book, and a general interest first half was added. I felt liked giving up on the book a number of times during the first half. Knowing what I know now, I would have just read the second half.

After reading the book, I was struck by the genius of Richard Nixon, and the small-mindedness of the Congress during his administration. While any number of his policies are open to criticism, it is striking that America’s best foreign policy President was paired with the first actively traitorous Congress in American history. No one can take seriously the empty, mind-dead rhetoric of “a nation of laws, not of men” when in our own time few Democrats support impeaching Tim Geithner, or enforcing the same level of openness on Ben Bernanke.

I highly recommend the second half of Nixon and Mao: The Week that Changed the World.

Lost to History: Chiang Fang-liang

From 1978 to 1988, the First Lady of the Republic of China (Taiwan) was Chiang Fang-liang, better known to her childhood friends as Faina Ipat’evna Vakhreva.

chiang_family

Faina, a Belarussian, was a Communist Youth League member who Chiang Kaishek’s son, Chiang Chingkuo, met while studying in the Soviet Union.

While Faina and her husband have passed away, her husband’s reforms have made Taiwan a vibrant democracy. His party, the KMT, recently won elections their. One of Faina’s children — Amy Hsiao-Chang, is still alive. While Amy seems to keep a low profile, she was featured in the May 18, 1959, edition of Life magazine.

Bill Nelson Tries to Sabotage What Works in ObamaCare

According to the New York Times, Bill Nelson (D-FL) wants to stop ObamaCare from gutting Medicare. Of course, this is a bad thing. The only good thing of ObamaCare — and one that its more sophisticated fans often point out — is that it guts Medicare. Sure it might grant coverage to illegal aliens and tax young families in order to subsidize the old and sick, but as Obama’s supporters have insisted over and over, reform is needed to prevent us from subsidizing morbidity into extreme old age.

Bill Nelson’s amendment, supported for tactical reasons by some Republicans, would prevent any cost savings, and simply speed up the transfer of American political and economic authority from Washington to Beijing.