Archives For China

When China rolled three warships with sailors decked out in full combat gear into Sydney harbour unannounced, the response was “there’s nothing to see here.”

This, along with the rhetoric blaming the Federal government for China’s first strike against Australia by way of a ridiculous 80% tariff on barley imports, and the verbal attacks against Andrew Hastie, George Christensen, and other outspoken Australian parliamentarians in recent days, conjures up images of Labor politicians with their heads stuck in the sand.

Worse, their first response to China’s first strike, would suggest that China could take half of Australia by military force, and some of our politicians would be out here telling us, “It’s not an invasion. Keep quiet, we don’t want to escalate tensions.”

Right on cue, the mainstream media would be telling us “not to criticize our benevolent Chinese Communist overlords, because they’re here to liberate us, not enslave us. You’re just racists and bigots”.

Not unlike the Nazi extension of Austria. Our elite would follow along with the rhythm of the media’s cadence.

They’d picket China’s critics. Chant virtue signalling slogans, and wave corflute signs from make shift welcome wagons. While their minions denounce, lynch, and prey on dissenters, as their goose-stepping, Christless Communist overlords, stomp in jackboot unison to cheers drowning out the purging.

Embers and ash from burning Australian flags, would be remembered by historians as metaphors for a nation wounded by backstabbing corrupted leaders, cashed up, and sheltered, who, despite red flags flying, preached “there’s nothing to see here”, whilst Australia lay dying.

If this kind of blame shifting isn’t treason, then the appeasement behind it is! It’s is a limp-wristed evasion tactic. It tells the Chinese communist party we’re a country of push-overs willing to let them slap us around whenever they so choose.

Appeasement precipitates an abdication of responsibility. It is one step away from total surrender.

Appeasement adopts the timidity injected into our subjective relativist addicted society by Leftists, who see phobias everywhere, and at work in everyone. Whose schizophrenic obsession with phobias causes us to doubt, question and reject everything about ourselves, while binding us to an inevitable defeat in the face of those who would capitalize on this Leftist induced paralysis, by turning us into an enemy.

Appeasement isn’t the ANZAC way.

Walking on egg shells around abuse enables the abuser.

Recall the words of French ex-Communist, Albert Camus, who, writing in support of the anti-Communist revolt in Hungary, 1957, said:

The Left is schizophrenic and needs doctoring through pitiless self-criticism, exercise of the heart, close reasoning, and a little modesty. Until such an effort at re-examination is well under way, any rallying will be useless even harmful. None of the evils that totalitarianism (defined by the single party and the suppression of all opposition) claims to remedy is worse than totalitarianism itself.

He added,

‘To be sure, the Right is not brilliant. But the Left is in complete decadence, a prisoner of words, caught in its own vocabulary, capable merely of stereo-typed replies, constantly at a loss when faced with the truth, from which it nevertheless claimed to derive its laws.’ [i]

Chinese Communists have soured the relationship with Australia by pouring their abuse all over it. This cannot be wished away, discounted, or swept under the carpet in an act of compliant dismissal. We answer their belligerence with appeasement at our peril.

Healthy boundaries save lives.

Therefore, we add our voices to the growing chorus of those in the wilderness, advocating a correction of this blatant imbalance of power. We call for the redefinition of this relationship, in order to stop Australians from being pushed into the same mass graves, Chinese Communists dug for the Chinese victims of their Marxist infused, Maoist totalitarian regime.

As Camus said,

‘None of the evils that totalitarianism claims to remedy is worse than totalitarianism itself.’ [ii]


References:

[i] Camus, A. 1961 Resistance, Rebellion and Death: Essays; ‘Hungary: Socialism of the Gallows’, Alfred A. Knopf, Inc. 1960 First Vintage International Edition

[ii] Totalitarianism: defined by the single party and the suppression of all opposition.

First published on Caldron Pool, 21st May 2020.

© Rod Lampard, 2020

In a 2016 Global Times hit piece on Australian swimmer Horton Mack, China’s ruling Communist Party echoed anti-Western sentiments straight out of the Tokyo Rose, and Hanoi Hannah, playbook, stating,

1. “We think Australia should feel embarrassed with Horton’s remarks. Otherwise, we would be surprised by some Australians’ sense of collective self-esteem.”
2. “It’s not a big deal to us. In many serious essays written by Westerners, Australia is mentioned as a country at the fringes of civilization. In some cases, they refer to the country’s early history as Britain’s offshore prison. This suggests that no one should be surprised at uncivilized acts emanating from the country. We should think the same way.”

The 2016 verbal attack was triggered by Horton’s criticism of the Chinese swimmer, Sun Yang during the Rio Olympics. Horton accused Yang to his face of being a drug cheat, and the accusation wasn’t without justification. [i]. Yang isn’t a stranger to bans for using questionable substances or hindering drug tests. [ii]

The reactionary outburst from China’s propaganda wing was to be expected. As The Guardian’s Stuart Leavenworth observed, Sun Yang’s wins are propaganda wins for the Communist Chinese Party. It stands to reason that they’d do everything they can to maintain the appearance of superiority over “evil Western capitalists.”

Criticism of Yang was received as criticism of China. It serves the interests of the regime to conflate criticism with racism, and conflate ideology with ethnicity; the Chinese Communist party with being Chinese. There’s political capital in discounting, and filtering all criticism of the Communist Chinese party down to the Chinese people as hate speech, and xenophobia.

This manoeuvring doesn’t just create political capital within China. It’s a magnet for the money, mouths and mandatory hatred afflicting many in the West, who’ve been taught, through the lens of cancel culture -Marxist critical theory – to hate, and doubt themselves, Western civilization, capitalism, Biblical Christianity – their own culture and history.

Take away the ‘Rocky IV’ melodramatic parallels, and what’s left is evidential proof of institutional disdain for Australia from within the Communist Chinese government. Sure it’s just rhetoric, but it’s also an insight into an obvious contempt, and racist-by-contemporary-standards, view of all Australians. Luke 6:45: ‘out of the overflow of the heart, the mouth speaks.’ When emotions are high, true intentions and inclinations are often laid bare.

Add this to China’s bullying and intimidation of the Australian government in regards to Australia’s just criticism of the C.C.P about COVID-19. Along with espionage, and its infiltration of Australian universities, the by-passing the Federal government through side deals with territory and state premiers (N.T and Victoria), and we don’t just have reason for concern, we have a problem with China, with an established negative pattern of behavior from the Communist regime as evidence of it.

China’s apparent breach of Australia’s national sovereignty, hostile posturing, and tactical maneuvering, is a clarion call, screaming out for an urgent redefinition of Australia’s relationship with the Communist regime.

LNP Senator Jim Molan stated yesterday, while this won’t involve

‘turning ourselves into “Fortress Australia”, isolating ourselves from the rest of the world and seeking self-sufficiency in every conceivable area: becoming the North Korea of the southern hemisphere.’ It would mean an ‘urgent and overdue correction of the excesses of globalisation from recent decades. COVID-19 has been a big wake-up call. We need to heed its lessons, to ensure that Australia is prepared in the years to come.’

To borrow the words of M.P. Andrew Hastie, we need action on protecting Australia’s sovereignty. We don’t need more politicians, ‘muddled and asleep at the wheel when it comes to Beijing.’

The Chinese communist party’s belligerent behavior speaks against the ‘cosy’ assertions of some in Australia’s Labor party, such as dubious Daniel Andrews, and his insistence that China is benevolent, not belligerent; a friend, not just a customer. Its belligerent behavior mocks the soft politics of Labor’s Madeleine King who acknowledged the need for a debate, but castigated Hastie, and discounted China’s tactics.

The cosy assertions from within Labor don’t gel well with Communist China’s bullying and intimidation of Horton Mack. The hate for Horton intensified last year when he reignited the ‘feud’ with Yang by refusing to share the podium with the Chinese swimmer.

Horton not only won overwhelming support, but a reprimand from authorities. It also earned him a great deal of harassment from who are presumed to be Communist Chinese operatives within Australia.

For brevity, here’s The Wentworth Report’s David Evans list of attacks designed to bully and intimidate Horton:

  • “The family home in suburban Melbourne was broken into amid threats against their youngest son, Chad, who was preparing for his Year 12 exams.
  • At the Rio Games, Brazilian commandos shadowed Mack [and his parents] Andrew­ and Cheryl.
  • The computer system at Horton’s firm was hacked.
  • The family was targeted with death threats and vile abuse online.
  • For nearly four years the family has lived in a virtual state of siege. Supporters of Sun, most believed to be on student visas, regularly bang pots and pans late at night in the alley behind the back fence and abuse the family from the driveway.
  • Plants have been poisoned, dog shit hurled over the fence.
  • A man speaking broken English calls Andrew Horton regularly to threaten his daughter (he has no daughter).
  • Last year, after South Korea, Cheryl was cleaning the family pool when she discovered “a bucket load” of broken glass at the bottom.”

Craig Lord, editor-in-chief of Swimming World Magazine also joined The Australian’s Luke Slattery, in raising awareness about the C.C.P’s alleged attacks on Horton.

According to Slattery,

“While most of Horton’s attackers are believed to be on student visas…The family’s ordeal is believed to be well-organised and part of a systematic pattern of harassment and intimidation directed at perceived critics of China. “This is not an amateur operation,” says a nationa­l security analyst who decline­d to be named. “The Hortons’ story is very disturbing … It says something about the reach of foreign powers within Australia.”

With China’s poor track record on athletes and drug cheats from 1994, 1998 and 2000, Sun’s temporary ban, and suspicion over a Chinese government cover-up, the swimming community is right to be on its guard. With governing bodies in the swimming world seemingly too afraid to stand up and serve the interests of those within the swimming community, Horton’s protest stands as justified.

As far as the bullying and intimidation of Horton and his family goes. This next level breach of Australia’s national sovereignty, by what looks like Chinese apparatchiks, is a clarion call for an urgent redefinition of Australia’s relationship with the Communist regime.

Horton’s experience is red flag for the Australian government. It proves Andrew Hastie right. It shows Australians the reach of the Chinese Communist Party, and the treacherous influence they have on Australian politics. The regime isn’t beyond, or afraid of bullying and intimidating Australian citizens in much the same way that they bully and intimidate their own subjects.

This is a convert, pay a tax or die religion, acting out its ideology of “you will do, say, speak and think what we tell you too, or else!”

As György Lukács, one of the fathers of Western Marxism wrote, “You cannot just sample Marxism […] you must be converted to it.” [iii]

Westerner’s should heed this as a warning.

‘When new gods were chosen, then war was in the gates.’ – (Judges 5:8).


References:

[i] The ABC’s China correspondent, Bill Birtles, wrote “Horton has long been critical of swimming authorities for allowing the Chinese star (Sun Yang) to compete after serving a three-month suspension in 2014 for testing positive to a banned stimulant.’ According to Birtle, Sun claimed that he didn’t know trimetazidine, which makes better use of oxygen and energy in the heart cells, was on WADA’s blacklist (W.A.D.A: World Anti-Doping Association) In an attempt to clarify this, The ABC’s Tracey Holmes, wrote a sympathetic article in favor of Sun Yang. Holmes implied that Horton had an ulterior motive. Holding fire on accusing Horton of racism, Holmes’ infers that Horton is the one up to no good, not Yang, and certainly not the Communist Chinese Party.

Holmes defended Yang’s alleged innocence by stating that trimetazidine ‘has since been downgraded on the WADA banned list because it was found not to be performance-enhancing.’ The ABC contributor than calls out Horton for not being consistent, snidely remarking that although ‘Horton maintains his criticism of Sun is justified. His stance has left questions over why Horton took exception to Sun while overlooking others on the Australian team, who’ve also been caught up in doping controversies.’

In other words, for Holmes, Sun Yang has been unfairly singled out, because ‘Horton hasn’t vocally condemned these [other] swimmers’. Therefore, Horton’s issue is probably xenophobia or racism against Chinese people.

[ii] Sun was handed an ‘eight year ban for his second doping offence – in which he smashed blood vials with a hammer before they could be tested in September, 2018.’ (Holmes claims that only thing smashed was the case that held the vials). (Alisha Rouse, The Daily Mail).

[iii] Record of a Life

First published on Caldron Pool, 3rd May, 2020.

Photo by Johnny Cohen on Unsplash

© Rod Lampard, 2020.

 

If you’re not really into Information Technology and are not aware of what the Golden Shield project is, you’re forgiven. The majority of Chinese people either don’t care or aren’t aware of its existence either.

The Golden Shield Project is Communist China’s massive firewall. It’s designed to keep a lid on dissent and ward off foreign influence on Chairman Mao’s, carefully constructed Communist culture, which was largely forced on the Chinese people during the Marxist/Maoist Cultural Revolution[1].

Some basic history: ‘The Golden Shield project has been in development since the 1990s’[i]. According to a Tom McDonald field study published by the University College of London (UCL) in 2016, ‘The Golden Shield Project is the best-known mechanism of Chinese state control over the internet…though most Chinese people are unaware of its existence, those who are, are largely unconcerned about it.’ (ibid)[2]

Both the UCL study (p.147) and Stanford’s Torfox, state that the ‘self-censorship[3] by Chinese internet users, is essentially the byproduct of both Government censorship’ and an unspoken social media etiquette within China, which views ‘posts regarding news, politics and current affairs as inappropriate’ (p.148).

Whilst the UCL study and Stanford’s Torfox online articles don’t talk in an outright manner, about the role fear plays in self-censorship, with what has happened to China’s Uighurs (Muslim community), and the continued harassment of churches, and house churches, along with the imprisonment of Christians, it’s fair to assume that fear of the Socialist State, plays a sizeable role. Heavy Government restrictions[4] on internet use, means online dissent against the Communist Regime is rare. (As a side note to reasons for how fear plays a role in self-censorship, Communist Chinese authorities also silently encourage doxing. It’s labeled, ‘online vigilante justice’, called “Human Flesh Search Engines“.)

Of the two reports, only Torfox makes the suggestion that self-censorship is the result of compliance with totalitarian Government:

‘What makes the Great Firewall of China so effective (and controversial) is not only its complex technology but also the culture that the system engenders – a culture of self-censorship.  The Chinese government mandates that companies be responsible for their public content.  In other words, it is the job of these companies to make sure that their online portals do not contain any prohibited topics or obscenities.  Leading online news media in China, such as Xinhuanet.com, Chinadaily.com.cn, Chinanews, and Baidu.com obediently follow the government’s decree, pledging that they “will make the Internet a vital publisher of scientific theories… maintain social stability, and promote the building of a socialist harmonious society” (Torfox, Stanford).

Tom McDonald’s field study published by UCL also hints at this reasoning:

‘limiting users access to social media platforms, and certain types of content appearing within them, in order to promote  a social media aligned to both the state and family interests,  was only one aspect of state control. Another method was by populating these platforms with content – propaganda and ‘patriotism’ (p.151) […] ‘Most social media posts about politics are nationalistic. There were very few posts that directly criticized the central government, or policies and attitudes of the state’ (p.161).

There are three good reasons why you should be aware of The Golden Shield Project. First, the project is “supported” by Big Tech (Silicon Valley) Companies. Second, it’s a Communist tool used not just to suppress free speech[5], but create and police, a culture of total compliance with Government approved thought, speech and content. What makes this second point even more alarming is that the technology used for The Golden Shield Project is now being exported. Third, the Golden Shield Project is promoted as being something that upholds family values, while underneath this the Government enforces the socialist state, through total surveillance, and sleight of hand, statist propaganda[6].

Although I use the word, “supported” cautiously, it may not come as a complete surprise that the Golden Shield Project is supported by Big Tech (Silicon Valley) Companies.

According to Torfox, ‘transnational Internet corporations such as Google, Yahoo!, and Microsoft are also subjected to self-censorship regulations.  Although censorship is very much against Western ideology, the size of the Chinese market is too profitable for the companies to bypass these opportunities.’ (Torfox, Stanford)

This raises the question, does participating in active censorship, and complying with China’s Golden Shield Project, make these Western, and largely Leftist companies, hypocrites? Further, does this active compliance mean that participating companies are profiteering from an oppressive regime?

Put another way, does the active compliance of Google, Facebook, Yahoo, Cisco, Microsoft, Motorola, and Nortel Networks, with China’s Golden Shield Project (which is designed to abolish, punish, and silence dissent, ‘and promote the building of a socialist harmonious society’) mean that these big tech companies, are profiteering from oppression?

Or, as Grant Clark from Bloomberg suggests, are these companies to be viewed also as victims of China’s Communist heavy restrictions?

Simple examples of this compliance include, when Winnie the Pooh, was temporarily banned in  2017.

More complex data shows Google actively blocking the use of its search engine to look up words unapproved by the Chinese Communist Government.

As highlighted by Harvard’s 2002 comprehensive list of searches blocked by Google in China, by request of the Chinese Communist Government. (Complete Chart) Top Ten:

1. Tibet
2. Taiwan
3. equality
4. dissident China
5. revolution
6. dissident
7. freedom China
8. justice China
9. counter-revolution China
10. news China/Democracy China

With this evidence, and these examples in mind, Western concerns about Big Tech companies, which are often ridiculed as fanatical, and fear mongering, are justified.

When these same companies choose to block dissent or a different opinion on their servers/social media platforms in the West, they are importing the same political lockout system that they (at least, in the case of Google, as shown above) apply to Chinese citizens, under the satisfied and watchful gaze of the unelected Chinese bureaucratic caste.  When these companies block dissent or a different opinion, they are choosing to restrict freedom of speech. They are picking a side, and imposing their favored form of ideology on those who may have no choice, but to use their technology or social media platforms.

This should be of concern to Westerners, because the technology used in the Golden Shield Project is now being exported[7].

According to the McDonald field study for UCL, ‘in China, while propaganda frequently ends up forming the basis of news, not all news comes from, or is, propaganda […] [However] 80 to 90% of China’s news is fake news’ (McDonald 2016, pp.151 & 155). Since ‘the Chinese government controls all of the national authority name servers’ (source), it has total control over social media and social media companies.

Evidence of propaganda is seen in the defense of the GSP. Advocates say that Golden Shield Project is only a tool for protecting family values.  The GSP, however, was designed to protect the Communist state, not families. Its primary purpose is to guard the state against the ‘use of the Internet by domestic or foreign groups to coordinate anti-regime activity.’ (China Golden Shield, 2001)

Stanford’s Torfox confirms this, stating that ‘the government initially envisioned the Golden Shield Project to be a comprehensive database-driven surveillance system that could access every citizen’s record as well as link national, regional, and local security together.’

Ergo, even if upholding family values is now a small part of the usefulness of the GSP, it was not part of the Golden Shield Project’s original intent.

In conclusion, it’s reasonable to have governance of the internet based on a nation’s laws and boundaries, but that governance should be small, effective, and preferably have at its core classical liberal ethos, anchored by the Judeo-Christian moral compass. It’s important to remember, that ‘human beings do not have to serve causes, causes have to serve human beings’ (Karl Barth, Against the Steam p.35).

If when talking about the GSP, our focus is on protecting family values, than the GSP is an easy sell. Protections that include internet safety for Children and adults with addictions are plain common sense. For true freedom to exist, it has to have a certain degree of parameters to ensure and uphold its existence. Otherwise, we become enslaved to the machine, and land somewhere in the Matrix.

However, if the goal of governance over the internet, such as the GSP, is the protection of an ideology, an unelected bureaucratic caste, the invasion and suppression of citizen’s rights, and that control is masked by propaganda about protecting family values, then instead of being controlled by the Matrix, we enter a land controlled by those who own the Matrix, which is as equally horrifying.


References:

[1] For a full explanation of this, see Jacques Ellul’s, 1965 publication, ‘Propaganda’.

[2] For a deeper reading of the history, see Bloomberg’s article called, Quicktake: The Great Firewall of China by Grant Clark

[3] McDonald, author of the UCL field study further claims that ‘such reactions can be understood as ways that townsfolk form a strategy for coping with inflexible  controls that they are  otherwise unable to influence’ (p.148). However, ‘the controls which receive the greatest attention outside China – the Great Firewall and deletion of social media posts – are the ones that typically concern local people the least […] Other systems of control – such as checking users’ ages and restricting access for young people – that act at a local level are immediately visible and very important to townsfolk. Some of these measures come from people’s own convictions about the appropriate use of social media, rather than just from state- imposed restrictions’ (p.150)

[4] Bloomberg: ‘Critics say China’s Great Firewall reflects its paranoia over the internet’s potential to spread opposition to one-party rule. As well as impeding freedom of speech, China’s approach constrains it economically, they say, by stifling innovation, preventing the exchange of important ideas and cutting access to services used by businesses like Google Cloud.’

[5] Greg Walton: ‘Many people in China have been arrested for Internet-related “crimes,” ranging from supplying e-mail addresses to Internet publications to circulating pro-democratic information or articles that are critical of the Chinese government, in blatant contradiction of international human rights law guaranteeing freedom of speech.’ (China Golden Shield, 2001)

[6] Greg Walton: ‘China’s Internet regulations and legislation are guided by the principle of “guarded openness” – seeking to preserve the economic benefits of openness to global information, while guarding against foreign economic domination and the use of the Internet by domestic or foreign groups to coordinate anti-regime activity.’ (China Golden Shield, 2001)

[7]  Stanford: ‘China even exports its technology to other countries such as Cuba, Zimbabwe, and Belarus.’ (The Great Firewall of China: Background. Sourced, 23rd January 2019)

[i] McDonald, T. 2016 Social Media In Rural China, ULC Press, U.K. Link to a free copy of the PDF  (p.146)

Photo by Markus Spiske on Unsplash

©Rod Lampard, 2019

(Also published at The Caldron Pool, 24th January, 2019.)