Lawdiva Banned in China

In China they only want you to know what they want you to know. Imagine my surprise when I was not able to access my blog, twitter or Facebook upon my arrival in Beijing.

I quizzed my amiable tour guide Tom about recent world events such as the Arab Spring, the threat of North Korea and the hidden nuclear facilities in Iran, but he had no idea what I was talking about. He assured me, however, that North Korea, Iran, and Russia were “friends” of China, while Japan, Vietnam, South Korea and others were enemies.

His awareness of recent events in China was also limited. He knew that Chinese activist Chen Guangchen had left China for the United States and saw that as an example of the government’s benevolence. When I asked him what he knew about the disappearance of Chen’s brother he was stymied.

After four days of sightseeing in Beijing he asked me to send him the address for my blog and I did. A day later an email arrived from Tom advising me that he could not get access to it. Later I learned that thousands of websites are blocked including WordPress, the site that publishes Lawdiva.

Tom was a good sport answering all my questions and when I asked him what China’s unemployment rate was he said “the government says it is 4.5 percent, but I don’t believe it.”

I also asked him how many Christian churches there were in Beijing and he answered
“many”, but they must have been well hidden because we saw none.

With the improvement in China’s economy Tom quipped that China’s new national bird is the crane, pointing to Beijing’ grey sky with its multitude of construction cranes. The pace of construction of residential and commercial buildings is astounding.

During our time in Beijing, the weather was hot and muggy with a complete absence of blue sky. Tom knows that the level of Beijing air pollution may shorten his life span, but that’s just part of life in China, he says.

Tom’s only complaint? With China’s one child rule and preference for male babies, he is uncertain whether he will meet a girl to marry and that is his one desire. I told him there were lots of single girls in Vancouver and he smiled.

Lawdiva aka Georgialee Lang

6 thoughts on “Lawdiva Banned in China

  1. The smog in Beijing is more about the desert winds that blow an extremely fine dust into the city, that stays in the air for days and accumulates on buildings. When contrary winds blow, the city air will be suddenly very clean with blue skies.

    About the internet, the totalitarians ‘got it’ early, that control of all media is fundamental to control of the nation. Even in Canada, the devious political left operates that way, with their relentless myth making chatter, faultfinding, and general politics of envy and resentment. It is all about occupying the field of news chatter to try to control the national political agenda.

    Concerning government agency control, we have the equivalent in Canada that was started during the Second World War, and has evolved and updated ever since, to monitor all communication. It is the Canadian Security Establishment with headquarters in Ottawa, which monitors all electronic communications in Canada. They concentrate upon potential threats to national security. The CSEC is Canada’s national cryptologic agency. They provide the Government with two key services: -foreign signals intelligence in support of defence and foreign policy, -and the protection of electronic information and communication.

    They describe themselves as follows:
    CSEC is Canada’s national cryptologic agency. Unique within Canada’s security and intelligence community, CSEC employs code-makers and code-breakers to provide the Government of Canada with information technology security (IT Security) and foreign signals intelligence (SIGINT) services. CSEC also provides technical and operational assistance to federal law enforcement and security agencies.

    Our IT Security products and services enable our clients (other federal government departments and agencies) to effectively secure their electronic information systems and networks. CSEC also conducts research and development on behalf of the Government of Canada in fields related to communications security.

    Our SIGINT products and services support government decision-making in the fields of national security, national defence and foreign policy. CSEC’s SIGINT activities relate exclusively to foreign intelligence and are directed by the Government of Canada’s intelligence priorities.

    So there you have it. Canada has its own version of the Chinese electronic screening apparatus, albeit in a mild western democratic context.

  2. Georgialee, I met up with a friend of mine who has just come back from three months in China. Officially there is a one child policy but if you have more than one the parents have to pay a fine. Some families simply dont register their second and third kids which will cause problems later on. Forced abortions of full term fetuses are not uncommon.

    As for finding a spouse currently there are about 50 million more males than females of marriageable age so you are going to have a lot of unhappy men looking for wives. he also mentioned the first thing young women ask in Shanghai before considering marriage is “where is your house and where is your car”? Those are non-negotiable items for yuppy women looking for a husband.

  3. He also mentioned there is no law requiring equal distribution of property in the event of a divorce. China is a male dominated and male chauvinist society and men hold all the cards when a marriage breaks up in China.

  4. When I was in Beijing, I heard that there are provisions for some families being legally allowed to have 2 children. Here’s the explanation: Now that millions of sibling-less people in China are now young adults in or nearing their child-bearing years, a special provision allows millions of couples to have two children legally. If a couple is composed of two people without siblings, then they may have two children of their own, thus preventing too dramatic of a population decrease.

    Also, it is really the urban areas they worry about the population growth and are more lax with the birth rate in rural China.

  5. Hi Georgialee,
    You sure hit the nail on the head with this post. I worked for a billionaire Chinese man who has homes in Beijing, Honk Kong and the rest of the world. Often we talked about freedom and the lack of freedom in China. His scoop was that with over 1.2 billion people who are mostly uneducated in China the only way to control them is through suppression imposed by the government and the military. So if the government executes a few hundred people it helps keep the 1.2 billion people in line. He also admitted that wealthy Chinese leave China to pick up on world events. Wow this just scares me.

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