Home > culture, media, politics, video > 领导人是怎样炼成的 – How Leaders are Made

领导人是怎样炼成的 – How Leaders are Made

I wanted to share a video that has gone viral on Youku, and has gotten the attention of western outlets such as Time Magazine, which will no doubt attract ample amounts of sneers and visceral comments from the West. I’m posting both the English (Youtube) and Chinese (Youku) versions, for everyone’s convenience.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6BosGD5Bk98

http://v.youku.com/v_show/id_XNjIzMTk1NTQ4.html

 

  1. TheMakerzBiz
    October 20th, 2013 at 22:29 | #1

    Please don’t call this a “sneer” or “visceral” — my following comment is merely my reflection upon the video.

    I found the disregard for the electoral process in the UK/USA to be misleading at best. Further, to compare a popularly elected leader to an American Idol/Britain’s Got Talent contestant was… pathetic. Extremely dishonest video about electoral parliamentary/republic systems.

  2. October 21st, 2013 at 02:30 | #2

    TheMakerzBiz :
    Please don’t call this a “sneer” or “visceral” — my following comment is merely my reflection upon the video.
    I found the disregard for the electoral process in the UK/USA to be misleading at best. Further, to compare a popularly elected leader to an American Idol/Britain’s Got Talent contestant was… pathetic. Extremely dishonest video about electoral parliamentary/republic systems.
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    Dude, it’s a 5-minute cartoon. Do you honestly expect a 5-minute cartoon to accurately and comprehensively describe the innerworkings of ANY government? Furthermore, this is obviously a cartoon focused on describing the Chinese system, whereas the US/UK electoral systems are a side show, & not the main theme of the cartoon. Therefore, it’s unnecessary to spend any more time than the minimal necessary to get the point across.

    Also, the only “comparison” made between elections & TV talent shows is that the former is far more complex than the latter (you can verify that with the videos in both languages).

    So you find it “dishonest & misleading”? Good, I’m glad you know how most of us here feel when the western media constantly find convenient facts to demonize every aspect of Chinese government & society.

    Oh by the way, I also find this video misleading – for the winners of TV talent shows probably have a lot higher approval ratings than those of elections, which is something this video completely omits.

  3. TheMakerzBiz
    October 21st, 2013 at 02:59 | #3

    It’s a 5 minute cartoon with a clear political message: Chinese politics are rigorous and reward success, western parlimentary/republic systems are popularity contests akin to reality television shows.

    The second half of the cartoon was actually rather comprehensive and succinct in its description of how Chinese leaders go through various levels of government in order to be promoted to the top brass. It was good, clear, and researched in its description. The former half about parliamentary/republic systems, however, was extremely dishonest and biased.

    So your argument is it’s okay for this video to spread mis-truths and falsehoods because you subjectively believe “western” media is guilty of mis-truths and falsehoods? Two wrongs do not make a right.

    TV talent shows are not about interest groups, civil society, economics, community, etc; talent shows are media-opium to placate and relax people. Apples to oranges. To say how many people like person X’s singing is comparable to an electoral system for ministers and executives, with real-world consequences of resource distribution, political power, legal and police forces, land development, etc. is pure hooey.

  4. October 21st, 2013 at 03:42 | #4

    There is indeed a clear political message, and it’s written right into the last sentence of the script: “no matter what system you have, as long as it generally leads the country in the right direction, is a good system”. Nowhere in this video did anyone claim that UK/US electoral systems produce bad results.

    If you want to interpret anything else, or get defensive about how your government is portrayed, that’s your personal problem.

    Again, obviously this is a video *ABOUT CHINA* & the Chinese system, so it is unreasonable to expect the makers of the video to devote equal time or equal attention to other governments. If you want a detailed portrayal of how your system works, go watch school house rock.

    If you “subjectively believe” that “the Chinese propaganda machine” made this video to spread “mis-truths & falsehoods”, then you’re reading too much into a 5-minute cartoon, for you’re completely ignoring what the actual comparison was – which is that one is more complicated than the other. THAT’S IT. To give a simpler analogy, if I’m claiming that an M&A transaction is more complicated than a small claims lawsuit, & I make a cartoon out of it, it doesn’t mean I’m denigrating the latter, nor am I trivializing the importance of the former, I’m simply stating a fact.

    You’re technically correct in saying that two wrongs don’t make a right, but it’s whose “wrongs” you choose to focus on that clearly reveals your personal bias.

  5. TheMakerzBiz
    October 21st, 2013 at 03:48 | #5

    I thought the video was bad — that’s not a personal problem. I stated why I didn’t like on an internet forum.

    Is the crux of the video that one system is more complicated than the other? I did not interpret the video that way at all!

    BTW: Why do you use quotations around “the Chinese propaganda machine”? I never wrote that.

  6. October 21st, 2013 at 03:57 | #6

    You’re obviously not reading my post very carefully, I clearly articulated what the crux of the video was in my 1st paragraph about political messaging, please refer to that.

    My statement about degree of complication refers purely to the comparison between elections & TV shows.

    BTW: quotes are used for sarcasm, not just repeating another’s statements verbatim. Now if you have actual, relevant issues about the video itself, I’d be happy to debate that.

  7. TheMakerzBiz
    October 21st, 2013 at 04:16 | #7

    lol no you already said all my criticism was bad. you refuted all of it!

    my comments stand. i hope someone else comments on this piece!

  8. ho hon
    October 21st, 2013 at 05:08 | #8

    I like the video. It is fun.

  9. kenan3cn
    October 21st, 2013 at 07:26 | #9

    I won’t be surprised if the majority of the sneers and visceral comments don’t come from western media but from China’s very own “sharp” netizens.

  10. Black Pheonix
    October 21st, 2013 at 08:29 | #10

    Some would prefer to sneer over the accuracy of 5 minute toons. Perhaps they just don’t have much of sense of humor?

    As usual, such boring criticisms last less than 5 seconds.

    So, let’s just call it as it is, Wu Miao (五秒) Party.

  11. ersim
    October 21st, 2013 at 08:48 | #11

    Like any cartoon, it shouldn’t be taken too seriously. You laugh at the beginning and smile at the end.

  12. October 21st, 2013 at 11:40 | #12

    This is a great video. It is true. Think about the size of budgets President Obama had owned prior to him taking office. Think about Bush. The American system of electing Presidents is much less tied to meritocracy than compared to China’s.

  13. October 23rd, 2013 at 05:06 | #13

    @Mister Unknown

    I don’t understand why you have fallen to a defensive stance so quickly with TheMakerzBiz.

    The videos are accurate and excellent. There is no detailed comparison of electoral democracy with electoral reality t.v. save that to win an electoral democracy requires much more effort and money. Nothing wrong with that. Everything else is in TheMakerzBiz’s head.

    Besides, it’s a plus for democracy as far as the fact of more effort + money is concerned.

    As for civil society, democracy, etc. – that’s the true mass opiate of modernity -something the video doesn’t attack at all.

    As for everyone else – what’s inaccurate about this cartoon??? I am kind of disappointed in you all.

  14. TheMakerzBiz
    October 23rd, 2013 at 07:11 | #14

    I am disappointed, too. Perhaps Mister Unknown’s mean etiquette has scared away comments? I sure don’t want to talk with him/her any longer!

    Allen:

    Do you not think the shallow explanation of constitutional/parliamentary electoral procedures juxtaposed with a clear, concise explanation of CPC electoral procedures is a cheap shot? I mean, why juxtapose at all if one side is obviously treated as a mere side-show, not worthy of unpacking? It seems to me that the video lacks purpose.

  15. October 23rd, 2013 at 07:13 | #15

    Currently, the Indian and Russian prime minister are visiting China. Yes, both at the same time. This event is rarely reported. The reason I mentioned it, is when Manmohan Singh and Li Keqiang were visiting the old palace, they met a bunch of Chinese tourists. Li asked them where they are from, first said Zhengzhou, the second said Liaoning. Li told Manmohan that he used to work in those two places.

    http://v.ifeng.com/news/world/201310/0190c5c7-cafe-42d7-b3e3-15ef8f325595.shtml

    I am just using this brief example as how it correspond with this article regarding how Chinese leaders are selected.

    On a side note if both the Indian and Russian prime ministers are visiting, say US, UK, France or Japan at the same time, would that be worthy news?

  16. October 23rd, 2013 at 07:15 | #16

    Oops, I forgot to mention that the prime minister of Mongolia is also visiting at the same time.

  17. Black Pheonix
    October 23rd, 2013 at 10:08 | #17

    This is funny:

    “Do you not think the shallow explanation of constitutional/parliamentary electoral procedures juxtaposed with a clear, concise explanation of CPC electoral procedures is a cheap shot? I mean, why juxtapose at all if one side is obviously treated as a mere side-show, not worthy of unpacking? It seems to me that the video lacks purpose.”

    I think “voting” in general is rather shallow in view of the complexity of politics and policies, and quite a cheap shot to call it a “system”. I mean, why juxtapose/debate at all if one end of it is obviously designed as a side-show.

    No wonder many find discouraged by “vote” which lacks purpose. Even the “voters” nowadays know the real show is behind the scenes controlled by the elites.

  18. October 23rd, 2013 at 17:11 | #18

    @Allen

    My retort against “TheMakerzBiz” is focused on the fact that he criticized the video as if it should have been anything more serious or more ‘accurate’ than a 5-minute cartoon.

    As for “accurate” or “inaccurate”, that wasn’t really the focus of my back & forth with him/her, nor do I expect “accuracy” to be the standard of a good video in this context, as it is – after all – just a 5-minute cartoon, one meant to entertain and offer a simple political message. It is not meant to be an in-depth, nuanced treatise.

  19. TheMakerzBiz
    October 23rd, 2013 at 21:00 | #19

    @Mister Unkown

    It’s a 5 minute propaganda piece, then? Why even post the video if it provides nothing but a sideshow?

    @Allen

    Why juxtapose at all indeed! This video is unnecessary and adds zero to the understanding between authoritarian/multi-party systems, despite it’s end where it claims all systems are equal. It claims the ends always justify the means, if the ends are “good” — which I guess means economic growth numbers.

  20. Black Pheonix
    October 24th, 2013 at 06:36 | #20

    I don’t know what good ends all this juxtapose on a 5 minute video is leading to.

    Sounds like a lot of hot air.

  21. TheMakerzBiz
    October 24th, 2013 at 07:18 | #21

    A successful society. Right? That was the point.

    To quote @Mister Unknown:

    “There is indeed a clear political message, and it’s written right into the last sentence of the script: “no matter what system you have, as long as it generally leads the country in the right direction, is a good system”. ”

    That was the point. That any system, no matter good or bad, is okay as long as it “generally leads the country in the right direction”. There is no hot air whatsoever.

  22. Black Pheonix
    October 24th, 2013 at 08:26 | #22

    @TheMakerzBiz

    That was the point of the video. Not your juxtaposing.

    I assume you have no points.

  23. TheMakerzBiz
    October 24th, 2013 at 16:51 | #23

    Was there no juxtaposition? Because when I watched the video, it showed two separate concepts, then concluded that each concept was good if it “generally leads the country in the right direction”.

    jux·ta·pose [juhk-stuh-pohz, juhk-stuh-pohz] Show IPA
    verb (used with object), jux·ta·posed, jux·ta·pos·ing.
    to place close together or side by side, especially for comparison or contrast.

    Yep — it was a juxtaposition between electoral parliament/republican systems and a dictatorship of the proletariat. Clearly. Don’t pretend it wasn’t, because you’re clearly incorrect.

  24. N.M.Cheung
    October 24th, 2013 at 17:24 | #24

    @TheMakerzBiz
    The point of the video is to present Chinese side of meritocracy that professor Zhang and Eric Li have been doing in conferences and other speaking forums which had been generally ignored in the West. As for a critique of U.S. democracy I am happy to provide here.

    Take the cases of Bush and Obama; first Bush, he’s been a C student in college, have a drinking problem, avoided draft and evidence pointed up AWOL when in National Guard, he’s been a failure in his business undertakings in Texas oil which is pretty hard to do. Yet because of family connection he became the governor of Texas which in Texas is not really a power slot, more a superficial sinecure. He became president with 3 million less votes than Gore and by all account less votes in Florida even discounting the butterfly ballots. In other words he was appointed by his father’s Supreme Court. Got the nation involved in 2 wars and sitting stunned reading My Goat on 9/11. Cut taxes while piling enormous debt.

    As for Obama, he may be the editor of Harvard Law Review and professor of constitutional Law, but he was polishing his resume as a community organizer, which essentially means hanging out his shingle on a letterhead. Opportunity knocks when black politicians in Chicago attack each other let him squeeze in state senate. A rousing speech ( Not actual work ) in 04′ democratic convention made him the senator in Illinois. He’s more noted for voting present than any laws passed in Illinois Senate. His one speech against Iraq war made his running for president against Hillary Clinton after only sitting 2 years in senate. His timing is perfect as Bush failure and white racial guilt and black pressure made him president. His achievements consist of withdrawal of Iraq which was essentially forced and Obamacare when left wanted a public option or singlepayer. The verdict on Obamacare remains to be seen with all the problems seen daily and Tea Party attacks.

    You may resent the comparison to American Idol, but I find AI much better present their true skills than a presidential race. With 50% participating elections and most people voted without really understanding the issues. I may be an elitist, but Plato was right. I won’t mention the undemocratic nature of electoral college, senate, filibuster rule etc…

  25. TheMakerzBiz
    October 24th, 2013 at 19:17 | #25

    @ NM Cheung:

    The USA is a REPUBLIC, not a DEMOCRACY; the electoral college and senate are clearly written into the system. In fact, the only reason antifederalists agreed to the constitution was the inclusion of a bicameral legislature that enhanced the bargaining power of small states, such as Rhode Island and Maryland.

    Your critiques about Bush Jr. and Obama are reasonable, although I will argue some of your comments about Bush Jr. are personal in nature and have no bearing on his ability to be an executive. To further stretch yor example, CPC bureaucrats are notoriously corrupt and fabulously wealthy (ask any Chinese!). Does this mean they are all bad people and bad leaders? Nope. Does Bush Jr’s. drinking problem from his youth mean he’s a bad person? Nope. You cannot look merely at the personal life of someone and judge their competency in an executive position.

    How many CPC cadres have been caught sleeping with prostitutes, taking bribes, etc.? Read China Daily for expositions on official corruption. A few bad choices and temptations do not negate an entire system.

    Zhang and Li are interesting fellows and I enjoy their work, but they purposely ignore some problems with the meritocracy within the party. An argument against CPC style “meritocracy” is it favours heavy local debt and accounting tricks over actual development and living standards. Now, as mentioned in the video, newer regulations within the CPC structure stress variables other than GDP, such as environmental issues, which is something I applaud. As an anecdote, a local Party member friend of mine criticised the new community swimming pool. Two years ago the construction was completed, yet the pool is only open once or twice a year, when large groups of CPC officials come to down to “assess development”. This is not actual meritocracy, because it allows promotions for the leader who honestly has done little to enhance the local community — the construction jobs are finished and gone, and local people are not allowed to use the pool except when it’s meant for a photo-op! Regardless, Zhang and Li provide context to CPC style authoritarianism, and their nuanced explanation help Anglophone audiences better understand China, rather than the usual indoctrination of “red” and “communist” and other pejoratives in the English language. In the end, I hope CPC official assessments can help improve the livelihood of average Chinese, who sadly still exist in rather impoverished conditions.

    Like the video said, results matter.

    At the end of the day, America never was and never will be a democracy, but rather a representative republic. I don’t resent the comparison to American Idol, I find it incorrect and dishonest. If the west is supposed to give nuance in their understanding to the Chinese system, it’s only reasonable to expect the Chinese to give nuance to their understanding of parliamentary/representative democracy. How can we have harmony without mutual understanding?

  26. N.M.Cheung
    October 24th, 2013 at 22:27 | #26

    @TheMakerzBiz

    The USA is a REPUBLIC, not a DEMOCRACY

    That’s semantic and a sophist argument. After all Hillary has been traveling the globe promoting democracy and American Exceptionalism. I did take American History in High School, and black slaves are considered 3/5 of a person for their owners’ population count. I may be hard on Bush Jr., but he did run an oil company in Texas to ground. There is prevalent corruption in CCP, but at least they are tackling the problem. I would say term limit and transparency will resolve those problems long term. Looking at U.S. with the gridlock and gerrymander I really can’t be optimistic unless the empire is dismantled. The next few elections will not change anything. As you stated the constitution is a compromised dated document which Scalia will hold on for dear life as original interpretation just as evangelical Christians hold Bible stated earth was 5,000 years old. Those structural problems have no real solution.

  27. October 25th, 2013 at 07:33 | #27

    Since we had some discourse on the appropriateness of comparisons between American Idol & the electoral process, here is something that isn’t so far off from this comparison:

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-europe-24660670
    Ukraine boxer Vitali Klitschko to seek presidency

    So apparently if you can beat someone to a bloody pulp, you’re obviously qualified to govern a population of 46 million people, right? XD

  28. TheMakerzBiz
    October 25th, 2013 at 22:15 | #28

    @N.M. Cheung:

    Black slaves no longer exist in America. The system evolved. The system itself can undergo change, much like the Chinese CPC system, which in its early days definitely had some erroneous policies. Slavery has been gone in the USA for over 140 years. Talk about something more modern and relevant if you want to make a sensible criticism.

    America has evangelicals that believe the Earth is 5,000 years old, and millions of Chinese believe in ghosts and spirits. Lots of ignorant people believe in nonsense. It’s not a reason to wholesale deny a society legitimacy.

    America in its current form is over 224 years old. China is a young country, a teenage really, at about 64 years. Let’s see if China can last over 200 years before we say it’s a superior model, eh?

    The obsession with GDP can become a structural issue for the CPC without movements away — all economies over time run into structural problems. In fact, I read in yesterday’s Global Times that Chongqing relied on 20% fixed investments for 2012’s for its growth. Is that a sustainable model, 20% fixed investment from tax payer dollars? Can this go on for 200 years and beyond? Maths and accounting say no. Another structural problem that will only get worse without drastic policy change is the status of migrant workers and hukou registration. There are literally millions of parent-less children roaming the centre and western provinces. That’s not good for family or society.

    All economies and political systems have structural issues that need to be addressed from time to do. The question is, can a society effectively make change? Over the past two centuries, America has proven it can. Over the past 30 years, China has a good record, too.

    In the end, if a system provides good outcomes, it’s a good system!

  29. Black Pheonix
    October 26th, 2013 at 07:06 | #29

    @TheMakerzBiz

    who’s pretending “no juxtaposition”?

  30. TheMakerzBiz
    October 26th, 2013 at 20:34 | #30

    @Mister Unknown

    Since when has Ukraine been an example of good governance? Why would you choose such an example and think it has relevance for the robust democratic/republican traditions seen in places like Switzerland and Canada?

    It’s easy to have a debate when you get to beat your own straw man, eh?

  31. October 27th, 2013 at 07:29 | #31

    @TheMakerzBiz

    REALLY? You want to start with me again? I thought I was “too mean” for your delicate sensibilities.

    Alright, here’s why I brought this up:

    1. It’s entertaining, even more so than Sarah Palin running in an election.

    2. In this world, there are effective democracies & dysfunctional democracies, just as you have effective authoritarian states and dysfunctional ones. Not everyone who adopts the democratic system ends up like Switzerland or Canada, nor does every authoritarian state end up like Taliban Afghanistan.

    If you want to ask why I post anything on this blog, let me dumb it down in to one central message: the notion that democratic systems are superior to authoritarian ones is simply an ideological dogma. There is way too much propaganda out there about how democracy is some magical one-size-fits-all solution, and that’s BS. That said, I’m NOT claiming democracy is a bad or inferior system, it’s just one framework/tool amongst a multitude of possible tools for governance – none of which are perfect, and none of which are superior or more legitimage to one another.

    To dumb it down further – to claim that democracy is “better” than non-democracy is like walking into a garage & saying a wrench is “better” than a roll of measuring tape.

  32. Sigmar
    October 27th, 2013 at 11:51 | #32

    @TheMakerzBiz
    Ukraine is a good mirror to illustrate the popularist and sensationalist tendencies in US politics. Just because you cannot see the relevance doesn’t make it a “strawman” argument. America does not have a “robust democratic tradition” like the places you mentioned in #30, so you’re the one making a strawman argument.

  33. TheMakerzBiz
    October 28th, 2013 at 04:11 | #33

    @Mister Unknown

    Your comment is hostile. Where are the mods? Let us have a nice conversation, please, and refrain from words like “dumb down” and “sensitive sensibilities”. Where are the mods???

    To go along with what you wrote, I agree. Democracy as a one-size fits all does not work. Countries that suffered imperialism or have no historical background of civil society or democratic governance cannot easily make a transition. I agree with you. Why the hostility on this board? I read it because I like it, even if sometimes I find it underhanded; I comment on what I do and do not like.

    As I stated, I felt the video was dishonest. I posted why. You disagreed. Life shall go on!

    @Sigmar

    I argue that America does have a historical tradition of robust representative democratic government. Prove me wrong, otherwise your statement is equally valid to mine. The USA is an old country, and has over time become a more inclusive society. It’s the definition of a pluralist society. Please show how there is no tradition of robust democratic governance in the USA. I wanna understand my straw man better!

  34. Sigmar
    October 28th, 2013 at 08:58 | #34

    @TheMakerzBiz
    Mister Unknown is engaging in a nice conversation. It is his right to provide a notice that he’s giving a “dumbed down” summary to help readers understand his message in a nutshell, especially if he feels that his initial message is a little too complex. That’s considerate of him. I find it helpful. “Sensitive sensibilities” is not an insult. You have proven you have sensitive sensibilities in this forum, coming to conclusions before you digest facts completely.

    Most importantly, you have already dished out rude remarks of your own to Black Phoenix on another thread. So if there’s anybody the mods need take a good look at, it’s you. You have already been warned to stop projecting.

    And now to your argument. Just because America has over time become a more “inclusive” society doesn’t mean it “defines” a pluralist society, since basic rights are not given freely to citizens or would-be citizens. The Chinese Exclusion Act excluded the Chinese from migrating to the US. And later the Blacks won the right to vote through armed struggle and civil disobedience. Lots of countries have a better tradition of inclusiveness and plurality, like Singapore. They, not America, should define pluralism. America has a tradition of producing nice soundbites and PR material, but falls short on the delivering the goods. Hawaii wasn’t given a referendum when she was forcefully “included” into America’s territory. The Phillippines wasn’t given the chance to vote whether it wanted to be America’s colony. The democratic governance in America traditionally catered to the whites, which meant it wasn’t robust, nor was it exactly democratic.

  35. Black Pheonix
    October 28th, 2013 at 09:25 | #35

    @Sigmar

    “now to your argument. Just because America has over time become a more “inclusive” society doesn’t mean it “defines” a pluralist society, since basic rights are not given freely to citizens or would-be citizens.”

    Quite right. The “system” of US didn’t evolve. “Freedom” was supposedly given 200 years ago, but was interpreted to accept “slavery”.

    Thus, current US is just another “interpretation”. If so, then “freedom” was nothing more than semantics.

    It might as well have been “gummy worms” or “stinky tofu”, it doesn’t mean any thing if it could be interpreted to allow “slavery” 1 day and then change to the opposite another day.

  36. October 28th, 2013 at 18:26 | #36

    Since the topic shifted to the topic of the US, here is my (broad & generalized) take on the state of US “democracy” today & throughout history.

    I think in terms of the APPEARANCE OF plurality and inclusiveness in US politics, the country has historically been going in an increasing direction. More & more people have PERSONAL freedoms. However, I think ordinary people’s ability to influence political outcomes is inversely correlated to the importance of the issue in question. In other words, the MORE important the issue (i.e. war & peace, healthcare, education costs, banking regulations) to the health of the nation, the LESS influence ordinary people have.

    The most important tool (in theory) that ordinary people have for change – elections – is hardly an effective means of real impact. Gerrymandering and campaign finance rules guarantee victory for entrenched interests (on both sides of the aisle). The mainstream corporate media ensures that any views that fall outside of the designated boundaries of mainstream debate are marginalized or portrayed as “extremist” (the most obvious example of this is the marginalization of Ron Paul during the ’08 & ’12 presidential elections).

    Meanwhile, the US government’s ability to monitor and control citizens’ every aspect of life has dramatically increased, regardless of whether that ability is being put to use enmass at this moment.

    I would argue that Americans have a great deal of personal freedom, but their ability to create meaningful political change is being diluted, marginalized, and eroded day by day.

  37. TheMakerzBiz
    October 29th, 2013 at 04:12 | #37

    Black Phoenix and Sigmar:

    Congrats on talking about slavery. What a tired topic. That was over 150 years ago. And about the Chinese Exclusion Act, what year is that from? Where you even alive? I sure wasn’t.

    I don’t fully understand what 19th century America has to do with 21st century America in terms of pluralism or representation, but okay, it’s acceptable to talk about the past and project onto the future while ignoring a society’s evolution. Singapore in 1964 and 1969 saw murderous race riots that were just as bad if not worse than anything seen in the USA, so I guess “inclusiveness” there is also hogwash.

    Mister Unknown:

    Awesome analysis. I quite agree.

  38. Black Pheonix
    October 29th, 2013 at 06:23 | #38

    @TheMakerzBiz

    If you are tired of the topic, you don’t have to talk about it.

    I rather enjoy talking about the importance of historical meaning of “freedom” and “democracy” in action.

    I don’t see the point of your interjection just to say you don’t like the topic. That’s SPAMMING.

  39. Sigmar
    October 29th, 2013 at 12:04 | #39

    @TheMakerzBiz
    I didn’t mention “slavery”. Don’t put words in my mouth, that’s spamming. Whether or not you’re tired with the topic has no relevance to our discussion at hand, just as whether or not you or I were alive during the Chinese Exclusion Act. The fact remains that America does not “define” plurality or inclusivity, nor does she have a robust democratic tradition, as shown by legislature such as this Act. The Civil Rights Movement happned in the later half of the 20th century, which you conveniently ignored. Rosa Parks died in the 21st century, and the Movement is still fresh in recent memory. How far has America “evolved”? Well, we have Rodney King and the LA riots in 1992. We have racial profiling. Now contrast with Singapore.

    “Singapore in 1964 and 1969 saw murderous race riots that were just as bad if not worse than anything seen in the USA”

    Singapore wasn’t an independent nation in 1964 so the race riots then was a Malaysian problem, not Singaporean. The race riots in 1969 were instigated by secret societies and gangsters, so it should be an issue of organised crime. The authorities acted decisively. All perpetrators were arrested and tried regardless of race, proof of impartiality and inclusivity. And from 1969 there was never any race riots in Singapore. The riots in 1969 resulted in 4 deaths and 80 injuries. The LA riots alone resulted in more than 50 deaths and scores injured. Therefore your assertion that the race riots in Singapore “were just as bad if not worse than ANYTHING seen in the USA” is patently untrue.

    When Singapore became a sovereign nation in 1965, citizens had the right and freedom to vote regardless of creed, wealth and race. Her first President was from the Malay minority citizenry. In 1965, the Civil Rights Movement in America had not even ended, and poor people were impeded from voting because of tax laws.
    This shows that Singapore has a much better claim to inclusiveness than America.

    “so I guess “inclusiveness” there is also hogwash.”
    Inclusiveness in Singapore is not hogwash, your unsubstantiated assertions are hogwash, and you are advised to stop projecting.

    “I don’t fully understand what 19th century America has to do with 21st century America in terms of pluralism or representation”

    That’s because we were talking about America’s claim to a “robust democratic tradition”. Stick to the topic. So far we’ve established that America didn’t have a true democratic framework for most of her history, from her inception to most parts of the 20th century. Ergo, she does not have a robust democratic tradition.

  40. TheMakerzBiz
    October 30th, 2013 at 03:07 | #40

    @Sigmar

    Millions of people disagree with you that America does not have a robust democratic tradition, as do I. I am finished with this thread. Nice talking with you.

  41. Sigmar
    October 30th, 2013 at 09:15 | #41

    @TheMakerzBiz

    Then they do so without critically considering the facts. So many agree with me, because they understand facts. So it’s settled then. You do not contest the principled notion that countries like Singapore have a much better claim to plurality and inclusiveness than America? Nice educating you.

    But I still have to report you for spamming in #37.

  42. TheMakerzBiz
    October 31st, 2013 at 05:26 | #42

    I would classify Singapore as a semi-authoritarian state. Further, Singapore is a city-state, not a nation-state, so it really does not need to deal with plurality in the same way for example the USA or China does — large population, rural and urban divides, areas where a national minority is a local majority, etc.

    Singapore is a TINY city. Plurality when I talk about it is clearly on a NATION-state level. Think the Han and various other ethnic groups that share China. That’s plurality. Singapore is like a less free Hong Kong. Not that special. In addition, Singapore has a definite problem with human trafficking (slavery) in the form of domestic workers and sex slaves. This is a HUGE KNOCK against your statements — a huge factual knock.

    http://www.kcet.org/shows/global_3000/global-3000-89.html
    http://gvnet.com/humantrafficking/Singapore.htm

    So absolutely no, you did not educate me whatsoever. Singapore is a CITY-state and not a national state, so it has no better claim to plurality and inclusiveness vis-a-vis the USA. If you want to compare Singapore to New York City, then okay.

    Spam? Dude, everything I wrote you label “spam”. How are my comments spam and yours are not?

  43. Black Pheonix
    October 31st, 2013 at 07:18 | #43

    @TheMakerzBiz

    “Singapore is a TINY city. Plurality when I talk about it is clearly on a NATION-state level. ”

    Then, what was your point in making the statement, “Singapore in 1964 and 1969 saw murderous race riots that were just as bad if not worse than anything seen in the USA, so I guess “inclusiveness” there is also hogwash”???

    Why did you insist on making a comparison, when you thought it was not comparable?

    You have 1 more chance to make a POINT in this thread, and move on. If you continue to waste bandwidth with your aimless lines of arguments, you are spamming, and you will be dealt with.

  44. TheMakerzBiz
    October 31st, 2013 at 07:25 | #44

    @Black Pheonix

    Sigmar is the first person in this thread to mention Singapore is post #34:
    “Lots of countries have a better tradition of inclusiveness and plurality, like Singapore. ”

    I made the comparison to counter Sigmar’s post — isn’t that the point of a discussion, to talk WITH each other, and not AT each other?

  45. Black Pheonix
    October 31st, 2013 at 07:38 | #45

    @TheMakerzBiz

    You made your comparison, and you can move on.

    Changing your argument to say, Oh it’s not really comparable any ways, is just you wasting bandwidth.

    Now, if you have no more comparison on this point, move on.

  46. October 31st, 2013 at 08:21 | #46

    @TheMakerzBiz
    Why is Singapore not an apt comparison. China can always use the same lame excuse by saying because China have 4 times US’s population and over 50 different languages taught in schools, less than 1/5 per capita income, it cannot be compare to the US.

  47. Sigmar
    October 31st, 2013 at 09:21 | #47

    @TheMakerzBiz

    Before I even reply, let’s look at what you stated in #40:

    “I am finished with this thread.”

    And then you carry on writing on this thread anyway in #42. Which shows you to be a disgusting liar and a person of low integrity. Going on a tangent with lies is considered spamming, which I’ve proved yet again that you did. So your comments are objectively spam. I am not the only person who has noticed it; Black Phoenix has too. My comments are not spam because they are backed with facts.

    And now to your arguments.

    “I would classify Singapore as a semi-authoritarian state.”
    Singapore is a democracy with free elections. It is not “semi-authoritarian”.

    “Singapore is a TINY city.”
    Size does not matter in determining whether a country is inclusive or not, The Maldives, the smallest country in Asia, is intolerant of faiths other than Islam.

    “Plurality when I talk about it is clearly on a NATION-state level.”
    Singapore is a sovereign nation.

    “Think the Han and various other ethnic groups that share China. That’s plurality.”
    That’s true. China is a civilisation-state that has practised plurality for a long time. I did not dispute this fact, nor do I now.

    “Singapore is like a less free Hong Kong. Not that special.”
    Erroneous analogy. Singapore has been a democratic country longer than Hong Kong has, and due to her achievements, is special. Her GDP (PPP) per capita remains higher than Hong Kong’s.

    “In addition, Singapore has a definite problem with human trafficking (slavery) in the form of domestic workers and sex slaves. This is a HUGE KNOCK against your statements — a huge factual knock.

    http://www.kcet.org/shows/global_3000/global-3000-89.html
    http://gvnet.com/humantrafficking/Singapore.htm

    Human trafficking should not be conflated with slavery because many people voluntarily smuggle themselves out of their home countries while being aware of the risks involved.
    Human trafficking is a global scourge that afflicts many countries, the US included. The links you provided are full of errors and do not cite specific statistics. The first states that Singapore does not give domestic helpers a day off for rest. That’s false. Singapore has a law that requires exactly that.

    The second ciritcises Singapore but observes that many of the trafficking recruiters come from the home country of the victim herself. This shows that Singapore, being a choice destination of these human smugglers, is herself a victim of human traffickers. Singapore has also successfully apprehended human smugglers in action along her borders. Lethal force is not used in these manoeuvres. Maids who feel aggrieved are free to seek recourse in their respective embassies.

    Contrast with America:
    http://www.polarisproject.org/human-trafficking/overview
    The Polaris Project reports that “it is clear that the total number of human trafficking victims in the U.S. reaches into the hundreds of thousands when estimates of both adults and minors and sex trafficking and labor trafficking are aggregated.” That could be the equivalent of the total population of Singapore.

    You claim that slavery is a “tired topic” for you. Well, human trafficking, or “slavery” as defined by you is alive and well in America, proving that things haven’t really evolved.

    Many Mexicans have tried to smuggle themselves across the US border, and in the process, were gunned down in cold blood, many times by law enforcement agents. They don’t have recourse to any protection.

    “This is a HUGE KNOCK against your statements — a huge factual knock.”
    You need to state exactly which statement you’re “knocking” against.

    “So absolutely no, you did not educate me whatsoever. Singapore is a CITY-state and not a national state, so it has no better claim to plurality and inclusiveness vis-a-vis the USA. If you want to compare Singapore to New York City, then okay.”

    The last time I checked, Singapore is a sovereign NATION. New York City isn’t a sovereign nation. Therefore there is no basis to your comparison. If you want to remain devoid of truth, feel free, but here are again educational facts. Based on facts, Singapore has a better claim to plurality and inclusiveness than the USA.

    Mods, spammer (and liar) reported for the fourth time.

  48. TheMakerzBiz
    October 31st, 2013 at 19:36 | #48

    @Sigmar

    “Which shows you to be a disgusting liar and a person of low integrity.”

    That’s mean, personalized language. Is that allowed on this forum, to call people disgusting? I keep responding because other posters try to deem me devoid of facts and ask further questions (like you in #41). Why did you ask me another question in #41 if you expect me not to answer?

    Singapore is only democratic if you want the word “democracy” to be meaningless. Singapore in political science literature is called “semi-authoritarian”. Please refer yourself to Ottaway’s “The Rise of Semi-Authoritarianism”, Slater’s “Iron Cage in an Iron First” and Rodan, “Elections without Representation”. Please cite some academic literature if you want to further that Singapore is a democracy, otherwise I have citations (facts) on my side.

    Singapore is a city-state, not a nation-state. Both city- and nation-states can be sovereign, but sovereignty is not what I am talking about here.

    “Human trafficking should not be conflated with slavery because many people voluntarily smuggle themselves out of their home countries while being aware of the risks involved.”

    Ha, that’s offensive to the millions of third-world workers that are trapped in slave conditions throughout the world. Not cool. To blame the exploited under the global capitalist framework is disgusting and elitist.

    No, slavery as defined as human trafficking is NOT THE SAME as slavery in 16-19th century America. It is a different ball game. Human trafficking exists in every country, all over the world. I never disputed that, but to say that because a couple states in the USA owned slaves 150 years ago that the entire American experiment lacks legitimacy, and that the past 150 years of increased inclusiveness in political and social life in the USA is unimportant because of a previous grave error, is why I said it was a tired topic. Black slavery in the USA was horrible, but it is not the same as modern human trafficking.

    Fair, we cannot compare NYC and Singapore. Singapore exists in a special status, like Monaco, and cannot be reasonably compared to nation-states with rural-urban divides and areas where a national minority is a regional minority.

    Mods, spammer and virulent language reported for the first time (@Sigmar).

    @Ray

    China constantly uses this excuse in the global context — big population, poor, developing, cannot be judged aside from Chinese historical context, etc. It’s a fair argument, of course, but it does not mean that large, multi-ethnic nations like Indonesia, China, USA, Canada all have some similarities that can be discussed in an academic format. Singapore is clearly a special global case, akin to Monaco or Vatican City.

  49. Black Pheonix
    November 1st, 2013 at 06:40 | #49

    @TheMakerzBiz

    I have warned you to discontinue this line of aimless argument.

    You have continued to misrepresent other commenters’ statements and positions with your intentionally imprecise and selective quotations, and go tangent with irrelevant statements to divert the topic under discussion, even when you know your comparisons are not valid (and it was a “tired topic” to you).

    Your point was obviously to derail a discussion that other commenters are having. (You are allowed to make your point that it was “tired topic”, but you have SPAMMED this thread repeatedly to disrupt other people’s discussions).

    As for Sigmar’s personal comments about you, (Since you are obviously not interested in rational debate, just wanting to derail someone else’s discussion), I say his reaction was quite “NORMAL”, given to what you have done, (i.e. coming back to the thread just to keep making the same argument).

    And you were the first one to disparage another commenter here, with your “mean etiquette” comment to MR. Unknown.

    So, you are going to the corner.

  50. Sigmar
    November 1st, 2013 at 12:10 | #50

    @TheMakerzBiz

    “That’s mean, personalized language.”

    Let me make this simple. You claimed to be done with the thread. Then you continued writing in this thread. Which shows that you’re a liar. Which shows that you’re dishonest. And dishonest people lack integrity and are untrustworthy. And people who lack integrity disgust and turn off other people. In the court of law, the testimony of a witness deemed to be of dubious character can be thrown out of court. So you are objectively a liar, someone who’s disgusting and of low moral character. And no, I did not “personalise” my description of you. I would have logically made the same description of anybody had (s)he possessed the above traits. Again, you make assumptions and jumped to conclusions and spammed.

    “Is that allowed on this forum, to call people disgusting?”

    It is, if these people can be proven to be disgusting, like you.

    “I keep responding because other posters try to deem me devoid of facts and ask further questions (like you in #41).”

    That is because you are devoid of facts and other posters (like me in #39, #41 and #47) have proven you to be so.

    “Why did you ask me another question in #41 if you expect me not to answer?”

    You expected yourself not to answer in #40 when you said you were done with the thread… only to lie about it.

    “Singapore is only democratic if you want the word “democracy” to be meaningless. Singapore in political science literature is called “semi-authoritarian”.”

    Political science is not exact science.According to the U.S. Department of State, Singapore is a “small, stable, highly developed country with an elected parliamentary system of government.”

    http://travel.state.gov/travel/cis_pa_tw/cis/cis_1017.html#country

    Having an elected parliamentary system of government means having democracy, thus there is no mention of “semi-authoritarian(ism)”. The U.S Department of State is not in the business of being “meaningless”. Thus it relies on facts and not inexact science.

    “Please refer yourself to Ottaway’s “The Rise of Semi-Authoritarianism”, Slater’s “Iron Cage in an Iron First” and Rodan, “Elections without Representation”. Please cite some academic literature if you want to further that Singapore is a democracy, otherwise I have citations (facts) on my side.”

    Communitarian Ideology and Democracy in Singapore by Tan Beng Huat, Routledge, 1997.

    Governing Singapore: Democracy and National Development By R. K. Vasil, Allen and Unwin, 2000.

    Done. Ergo, Singapore is a democracy.

    “Singapore is a city-state, not a nation-state. Both city- and nation-states can be sovereign, but sovereignty is not what I am talking about here.”

    Singapore is a city-state that happens to be a nation, so it can be considered to be a nation-state.

    “Ha, that’s offensive to the millions of third-world workers that are trapped in slave conditions throughout the world. Not cool.”

    Tell that to the millions of third-world workers who are trapped in slave conditions in the US and who are trafficked for sex and labour. See #47.

    “To blame the exploited under the global capitalist framework is disgusting and elitist.”

    Strawman argument. Nobody’s blaming the exploited. Again, you spam with irrelevancies.

    “No, slavery as defined as human trafficking is NOT THE SAME as slavery in 16-19th century America. It is a different ball game.”

    It is the same. People who are trafficked not of their own volition and who are exploited without given basic rights suffer the exact fates as Black slaves in 16-19th century America. And millions of people are currently suffering this fate in America. See #47.

    “Human trafficking exists in every country, all over the world. I never disputed that, but to say that because a couple states in the USA owned slaves 150 years ago that the entire American experiment lacks legitimacy, and that the past 150 years of increased inclusiveness in political and social life in the USA is unimportant because of a previous grave error, is why I said it was a tired topic.”

    A “couple” of states is already one too many. The American experiment at its onset lacks legitimacy. George Washington himself was a owner of slaves. For the past 150 years, America has consistently made grave errors. And that is why events like the Civil Rights Movement had to happen. And the Movement proved that increased “inclusiveness” was not something given freely and had to be won through armed struggle and civil disobedience. It showed oppressed people in the US that if you want rights, you’ve got to fight for it, because the state isn’t going to hand them to you.

    Slavery may be a tired topic to you, but to the millions of slaves in America right now (see #47), it is a cruel and bitter truth.

    “Black slavery in the USA was horrible, but it is not the same as modern human trafficking.”
    Untrue, as shown above. And it shows the lack of progress America has made on this count.

    “Fair, we cannot compare NYC and Singapore.”
    Nice educating you.

    “Singapore exists in a special status, like Monaco, and cannot be reasonably compared to nation-states with rural-urban divides and areas where a national minority is a regional minority.”

    Singapore at her birth had a huge educated-uneducated divide and racial tensions between her Chinese majority and Malay minority because of gang-related activities. Her experience can be reasonably compared to countries with similar problems. It is to her credit that she managed to provide opportunities to all of her citizens and make them feel they are a part of a nation.

    “Mods, spammer and virulent language reported for the first time (@Sigmar).”

    You have proven nothing to show that I have spammed or used “virulent” language. In contrast, I have provided evidence on multiple occasions, that you have spammed, projected your wrongdoing unto others, made unsubstantiated assertions, lied, and jumped into conclusions.

    And now you are banned. Such is your just desserts.

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