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Author Topic: Seen any civil discontent lately??  (Read 3983 times)

ting

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Seen any civil discontent lately??
« on: November 13, 2008, 04:17:08 AM »
I read yesterday about taxi drivers in some chinese cities having a day off work, (a work stoppage) to protest various issues, esp. regarding heavy handed government regulations, fees, etc.  What have you seen?
  In my hebei city many construction sites are slowing down, even stopping, as world economic scene impacts china.  Exports now shrinking fast, few factory orders, no office work, jobs lost=social discontent which translates into the CCP's biggest headache-harmony lost!  I think we are in for an intersting 'year of the ox'.

Lotus Eater

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Re: Seen any civil discontent lately??
« Reply #1 on: November 13, 2008, 06:23:15 AM »
Not recently, but the taxi driver strike has been on for a week or so now.

Last year and the year before I saw protests in the streets here about new shopping centre buildings planned for old residential areas.  From memory the year before last there were 88,000 protests with 10 or more people.  Maybe this is why there is a call for a 'harmonious society'??  ahahahahah kkkkkkkkkk


xwarrior

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Re: Seen any civil discontent lately??
« Reply #2 on: November 15, 2008, 02:46:29 AM »
Fom memory the year before last there were 88,000 protests with 10 or more people.  ahahahahah kkkkkkkkkk
I think Lotus Eater has got the number about right. After an official report in 2004 that there were over 74,000 protests the government has been trying to reduce the number. If there has been a decrease in the number it is because local governments now under-report the number of incidents to show Beijing they are doing a good job.
There have been a number of protests in Zhaoqing(Guangdong) in the last 2 years. They seem to be mainly older people who are demanding an increase in social welfare assistance, or farmers asking the government to hand over the money that was offered to them when their land was confiscated on behalf of property developers.
Last year protesters gathered outside the local govt office every day about 5 days. They were kept in line by a special police contingent (outfitted in riot squad gear) that travelled down from Guangzhou every morning.
Everyone kept to the script - turned up at the same time every day, took up respective positions and stood around until it was time to go home. The police were very low key a and quite realaxed but every so often led someone away from the lines. I had my photos removed from my digital camera by 2 members of the 'Ministry of Information.'
Taxi drivers in south China seem to be leading the way in a new wave of protests. This week in Zhaoqing there have been reports of angry confrontations  between 2 groups of drivers. This is the outcome of an overnight doubling in the number of taxis - and consequent reduction in the income of the incumbent drivers. As the taxi drivers are usually recent immigrants from other provinces there is an added edge to the 'dialogue.'
With so many dialects involved, including Guangdong putonghua which northeners have trouble comprehending, I wonder if they can understand each other. Maybe the fist will soon become mightier than the tongue. 
I have my standards. They may be low, but I have them.
- Bette Midler

dragonsaver

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Re: Seen any civil discontent lately??
« Reply #3 on: November 15, 2008, 05:26:20 AM »
One of my students told me about taxi drivers in one city refusing to drive.  His father is a reporter for the local Dalian newspaper.
Be kind to dragons for thou are crunchy when roasted and taste good with brie.

xwarrior

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Re: Seen any civil discontent lately??
« Reply #4 on: November 27, 2008, 12:43:09 PM »
For a definitive answer as to why it is not possible to give a definitive number for mass incidents in China check out Roland Soong on his 'East South West North" blog.
The guy is a statistician and his overview of the topic gives a good insight to the numbers game in China
I have my standards. They may be low, but I have them.
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Spaghetti

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Re: Seen any civil discontent lately??
« Reply #5 on: November 27, 2008, 01:19:03 PM »
Soong's site is a daily read. Awesome journalism.
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Lotus Eater

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Re: Seen any civil discontent lately??
« Reply #6 on: November 27, 2008, 01:25:12 PM »
Interesting and yet ... when the gov't is calling it 'mass incidents' and telling the public that things are getting better - I'm pretty sure they are NOT talking about a 'mass incident' that praises officials!

Spaghetti

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Re: Seen any civil discontent lately??
« Reply #7 on: November 27, 2008, 02:07:53 PM »
Funny that you say that, Lotus, as Roland Soong talks about that very thing!

http://www.zonaeuropa.com/200811c.brief.htm#012

"Most young people were getting jobs in big companies, becoming company men. I wanted to be an individual."
Haruki Murakami

Lotus Eater

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Re: Seen any civil discontent lately??
« Reply #8 on: November 27, 2008, 02:26:20 PM »
Funny that you say that, Lotus, as Roland Soong talks about that very thing!

http://www.zonaeuropa.com/200811c.brief.htm#012



That part of the article was the origin of the comment!  He was quoting stats about 'mass incidents' being unreliable, but all of his definitions were negative definitions of 'mass incidents' and 'public disturbances', so this does not qualify as a mass incident.  It's a show of support for the gov't - a nice positive thing!  bjbjbjbjbj bjbjbjbjbj

I'm still in the dark then as to why he disagrees with the number quoted - basically stating that the reported incidents are too high.  The majority of people living here - Chinese or otherwise - would tell you if the Gov't admits to a particular number then multiply it!!

xwarrior

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Re: Seen any civil discontent lately??
« Reply #9 on: November 28, 2008, 08:03:52 AM »
I do not think he is saying anything other than you should not take any statistic at face value. That, before accepting the number, you should have some idea of the criteria being used to arrive at a finite number.
Most of us would agree with those who say that you should take any government number and multiply it - the problem then is, by how many?
If your government announced that the number of unemployed had dropped for the month of October would you accept it at face value? Or would you try to find out if they had shifted a larger than usual number into funded educational programmmes, training schemes or short term projects that are not included in their definition of 'unemployed'?
I think Soong is asking us to check out a few things before accepting a number that seems to range between 30,000 and 80,000. 
I have my standards. They may be low, but I have them.
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Lotus Eater

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Re: Seen any civil discontent lately??
« Reply #10 on: November 28, 2008, 09:55:09 AM »
I would accept the gov't stat as the absolute minimum baseline, use it with students etc, but know in my head that the numbers are far more.  And even those gov't stats tell enough about the problems out there.