Fishball Revolution hits the streets of Hong Kong
Hong Kong: What Sparked the New Year’s Violence? – China Digital Times (CDT) Round up of English-language commentary on Fishball Revolution
Hong Kong Police riot squad’s equipment in detail | South China Morning Post
The Mong Kok riot on the first day of Lunar New Year in Hong Kong showed how tensions could boil over in the city. Since the Occupy protests in 2014, it was the first time the police had to face a raging mass of citizens in their hundreds. The Hong Kong Police Force has come under fire from their own members and ex-members over their preparedness for large-scale affray. The South China Morning Post has compiled this explainer to show what tools police have in their arsenal when protest escalates.
Never underestimate the little guy: What the Mong Kok clashes have in common with the Arab Spring | Hong Kong Free Press
And so this so-called “Fish Ball Revolution” really isn’t about fish balls at all – it is about citizens fed up with the daily abuse by an unelected and unaccountable government led by an unelected and unaccountable chief executive. One commentator compares Hong Kong people to a battered woman, who, after putting up with years of domestic violence, finally snapped and threw a beer bottle at her husband.
刘细良：鱼蛋背后──有恃无恐的权谋政治 | 端传媒 Initium Media (Liu Xilang: Behind the fishballs — the political tactics of someone with a strong backer)
鱼蛋革命、鱼蛋骚乱，抑或是鱼蛋暴动，任何称呼都改变不了未来，香港大规模骚乱一触即发的形势。梁振英认为年初一这场旺角骚乱，在任何地方都不会姑息容忍；同理，在任何一个正常的地方，都不能容忍姑息一个以政治斗争挂帅，以制造人民内部矛盾为管治手法的行政首长。现实上，香港就是有一个这样的特首，亦因为其毋须向香港人问责，可以在雨伞运动之后一年来，有恃无恐，步步进迫。一串鱼蛋的背后，牵扯出这几年香港管治所出现的质变，影响深远。[The fish ball revolution, riot, or maybe even rebellion — whatever you call it won’t change things. Hong Kong is in the situation where mass disturbances could break out at any time. CY Leung believes he cannot tolerate or condone rioting like what happened in Mongkok at the beginning of this new year. For the same reason, we cannot tolerate or condone an executive that uses political struggle as a method of holding power and sowing internal contradictions among the people as his method of governing. In reality, Hong Kong has this type of executive. And because he has no accountability towards the Hong Kong people, a year after the Umbrella movement, he remains fearless and continues to move forward with suppression. Behind this stick of fish balls appears the profound influence of years of change to Hong Kong governance.] Commentator and Democratic party politician Liu Xilang on the decline on “civic governance” in Hong Kong and the misaligned incentives that has put Leung Chun-ying 梁振英 at odd with average Hong Kongers.
solidarity.tw — Hong Kong activists assembling NPP of their own
The breakthrough Sunflower Movement members achieved by forming the New Power Party and becoming the Taiwan legislature’s third-largest party this past election has greatly excited Hong Kong activists. Sources say the Hong Kong student activist group Scholarism (學民思潮) intends to emulate the New Power Party by forming a new political party and running in Hong Kong’s legislative elections later this year. Hong Kong activists look to Taiwan once again.
China’s journalists give up
China’s young reporters give up on journalism: ‘You can’t write what you want’ — The Guardian
The heart-wrenching article earned Lin the respect of his editors and the adulation of a generation of Chinese reporters. But fast-forward seven years and the former high-flier has abandoned his notepad and pen and given up on journalism. “Boredom,” says Lin, who now works in PR on the 19th floor of Beijing’s World Profit Center, when asked to explain his decision. “One day I woke up in the morning [and] asked myself: do you still think it is fun doing the same thing over and over again each day?”
[Related] Censorship is not why Chinese journalists give up
Contrary to Philips’ assertion that Chinese journalists are resigning en-masse, they are in fact being laid off en-masse as media agencies around the country fold. But far from the “Being a journalist has no meaning any more” despondency that Philips attempts to illustrate in his melodramatic article, what is in fact happening is that legions of veteran and amateur reporters alike are turning to digital platforms. Traditional media outlets have also diverted more resources into new media. The trend does not take place in China alone. Global Times responds to Guardian piece.
Translation: The Fall of Commentary to Newspeak – China Digital Times (CDT)
Gao Yu (高昱), deputy editor-in-chief at Caixin, reflected on the throttling of critique across traditional and new media in a column published on February 9 by Dajia (大家), a longform website produced by Internet giant Tencent. Gao’s article was removed from Dajia, though it is saved in Google’s cache and archived by CDT Chinese. CDT has translated it in full below.
[Related] 论评论的倒掉与“新话”的全面占领 －大家 (The fall of commentary to Newspeak)
从主流媒体上看，这两日关于一台晚会的观后感是好评如潮。但在我的移动社交圈里，流传最广的一篇评论毫不意外的遭到举报无法再查看。The polemic begins with a less than subtle jab at the official line on this year’s Spring Festival Gala, that it received a “tide of good comments” (好评如潮).
Chinese journalist banned from flying to US to accept a prize for his work | World news | The Guardian
Yang Jisheng, a retired correspondent from Beijing’s official news service Xinhua, was awarded Harvard University’s prestigious Louis M Lyons Award in December for his “ambitious and fearless reporting” on one of the 20th century’s deadliest man-made catastrophes. […] Yang Jisheng, a retired correspondent from Beijing’s official news service Xinhua, was awarded Harvard University’s prestigious Louis M Lyons Award in December for his “ambitious and fearless reporting” on one of the 20th century’s deadliest man-made catastrophes.
Icy reaction to CCTV’s heavy-handed politicizing of CCTV Spring Festival Gala
Netizens Clamor for More Monkeys, Fewer Armored Tanks in CCTV Gala – China Real Time Report – WSJ
CCTV has announced that this year’s chunwan will include a reenactment of last September’s military parade marking the 70th anniversary of Japan’s defeat in World War II. “We have a responsibility, a duty, to recreate the spectacular event of the great Sept. 3 military parade,” an organizer of this year’s gala said, as quoted in state media. Political propaganda generally plays a role in the annual show. The huge viewership – six times larger than the U.S. Super Bowl’s – naturally makes the gala a prime target for channeling political messages and reminding citizens of the government’s accomplishments. Last year’s chunwan included skits about Beijing’s anti-corruption drive and included a song, “I Give My Heart to You,” that featured video shots of President Xi Jinping meeting with citizens around the country.
China Injects a Heavy Dose of Ideology Into New Year’s Eve Gala – The New York Times
The gala’s heavy ideological messaging and overt glorification of the military led some Chinese to remark that this year’s offering was even more propagandistic than usual. At one point, amid images from the enormous military parade in Beijing last September that commemorated the end of World War II, the message “Listen to the Party’s command” appeared on the screen. “The Chunwan is really a kind of propaganda,” Miao Yang, an engineer, said in an interview. “A lot of people felt that especially this year it was more political than usual, whether the military parts or the other skits.” “The Chunwan is really a kind of propaganda,” Miao Yang, an engineer, said in an interview. “A lot of people felt that especially this year it was more political than usual, whether the military parts or the other skits.”
Viewers Complain China’s Spring Festival TV Gala Was Way Too Political This Year · Global Voices
For decades, the Spring Festival Gala, produced by China’s state-owned Central Television (CCTV), has been must-watch programming for Chinese on Lunar New Year. Being such a high-profile media event, the program’s producers usually manage to strike a balance between entertainment and political propaganda. Not so this year. The gala in 2016, which is the year of the monkey, was arguably the most politicized in the show’s history, and is now facing unprecedented criticism from the public.
New Year Sensitive Words: Did CCTV Party Too Hard? – China Digital Times (CDT)
To dampen criticism, a number of related search terms have been blocked on Sina Weibo, including CCTV Gala + politics (春晚＋政治), CCTV Gala + brainwash (春晚＋洗脑), and CCTV Gala + suck up (春晚＋献媚). As Wong noted, some complained that the gala felt like an episode of network’s propaganda-heavy nightly newscast: CCTV Gala + News Simulcast (春晚＋新闻联播) is also blocked. Another censored search term is CCTV Gala + steamed bun (春晚＋包子), referring to Xi’s appearance at a Beijing steamed bun shop in 2013 which became a symbol of his personal image-crafting.
Anti-corruption is no House of Cards
Commentary: There is no ‘House of Cards’ in China’s anti-corruption campaign – People’s Daily Online
The American television drama series “House of Cards” features U.S. politicians’ ruthless pragmatism and manipulation in political struggle. As inappropriate as it is, some people still compare China’s anti-corruption campaign to “House of Cards”, insinuating anti-corruption is a tool for power struggle to discriminate against dissidents. Is this just alarmism? Corruption is the natural enemy of modern politics. Some people refer to the anti-corruption campaign as a “political need”, or another type of “conflict” among the politicians. It does make sense if this “political need” means to purify the governing party and keep a closer relationship with the people, and “conflict” means fighting against corruption and controlling its spread.
[Related] China’s Antigraft Campaign Isn’t ‘House of Cards,’ People’s Daily Says – China Real Time Report – WSJ
Two recent authoritative commentaries—one in Chinese, the other in English—reiterated last week what President Xi Jinping insisted during his trip to the United States last fall: That the effort to fight graft shouldn’t be seen as resembling the popular American television series “House of Cards,” which depicts a Machiavellian-like struggle to simply gain power and hold on to it by eliminating potential political rivals. Instead, the essays both argue, China’s anticorruption campaign deserves less doubt and more support than it’s currently receiving. These commentaries are always important indicators of political sentiment in decision-making circles—in this case, signaling concern about the persistent disquiet within the Chinese government about President Xi’s emphasis on cleaning up the Party first and foremost, instead of focusing more effort on the problem of China’s stumbling economic growth.
贪官被带走时的戏码：有人欲跳楼，有人被吓瘫_国内_新京报网 (Theatrics of corrupt officials being arrested: some want to jump to their death, others are scared to death)
近日，济南市委原书记王敏涉嫌受贿罪被起诉。早前，有媒体报道王敏被带走的细节：多辆警车鸣笛进入济南市委大院，大约出动20多名武警。对于犯了事的“中管干部”而言，带走他们的一般是中纪委。那么问题官员都是怎样被带走的？被带走的时候他们又都上演了哪些戏码呢？A list of how officials react when being arrested for corruption from 政治事儿.
New emphasis on patriotic education for Chinese studying abroad
China Says Its Students, Even Those Abroad, Need More ‘Patriotic Education’ – The New York Times
The directive, issued by the Communist Party organization of the Ministry of Education, calls for “patriotic education” to suffuse each stage and aspect of schooling, through textbooks, student assessments, museum visits and the Internet, which is the chief source of information for many young Chinese.
14.加强“中国梦”海外宣传。聚集广大海外留学人员爱国能量，确立以人为媒介、以心口相传为手段的海外宣传模式，形成人人发挥辐射作用、个个争做民间大使、句句易于入脑入心的宣传效应。构建“祖国-使领馆-留学团体-广大留学人员”的海内外立体联系网络，使广大留学人员充分感受祖国关爱、主动宣传祖国发展。挖掘在国际教育领域有影响力的专家学者、外籍教师、来华留学人员、非政府组织及国际智库的积极作用。[14. Strengthen dissemination of the “Chinese Dream” abroad. Gather a broad number of overseas study abroad students’ patriotic energy, establish a human intermediary to pass down tradition as a means of overseas dissemination, to form the propaganda effect, in which sentences easy to enter hearts and minds, where all people displaying their radiance, and where all vry to be folk ambassadors. Construct a three-dimensional network linking home and abroad — “motherland-consulate and embassy-study group-large study abroad student”– to make a broad number of study abroad students fully experience the love and caring of the motherland and actively promote the development of the motherland. Enlist influential scholars, foreign professors and students that study abroad in China, as well as NGO and global think tank, to play an active role.]
Wuzhen Internet Conference
Internet Naming Chief Defends Role in Chinese Conference
In a statement sent Thursday morning to The Daily Signal, Chehadé said he would “step out of my advisory position” to the Chinese-run conference if it compromised his commitment to “inclusivity.” Referring to China, he added: “If we really are inclusive, then it’s important that we find a way to give voice to a billion people.” The ICANN chief’s complete statement to The Daily Signal: It is important to note that I will assume the advisory committee role with the World Internet Conference (WIC) as an individual, not as the ICANN CEO and only after I have left ICANN next month. My position on the advisory committee to the WIC, along with other members involved in Internet governance, U.S. business, civil society and others, is part time. This is an unpaid position, where I get absolutely no remuneration. I am firmly committed to the inclusive multistakeholder model and that will extend beyond my tenure at ICANN. My work with the advisory committee is an extension of that and I invite everyone to join me in this mission. If we really are inclusive then it’s important that we find a way to give voice to a billion people. And if the committee proves not to support that inclusivity, I will step out of my advisory position. ICANN chief responds to criticism after participating in the CAC’s Wuzhen Internet Conference in December.
State-media responds to NK missile testing: a greater Chinese military presence
社评：中国需加强东北军事部署防半岛生乱_评论_环球网 (China must strengthen Northeast military deployment to prevent peninsula from descending into chaos)
Winner of US constitutional crisis: China?
美国强调“司法独立”，但在这个原则之上，政治能够影响“司法独立”的运行方向，决定对美国来说“敏感”的案子自由派赢的概率高，还是保守派的胜算比例更大。党派政治渗透进了美国司法体系的“顶层设计”，你可以说美国的“司法独立”打了折扣，当然，你也可以不这么说，但是要费很多口舌，把“司法独立”的概念做进一步的限定。 大法官任命毕竟不是美国政党政治最突出的镜子，美国人即使反政党政治，大概也想不到从这里开刀。然而斯卡利亚突然去世，美国两党迅速掐起来，还是很有戏剧性。所有规矩都是人定的，政治的影响到什么时候都具有主动性，为斯卡利亚补缺的争夺战让人看到，美国这个西方“司法独立的榜样”也未能在这个问题上免俗。Global Times chimes in on the death of Scalia and the politicization of his successor.