Several hundred of 200,000 pro-democracy student protesters face to face with policemen outside the Great Hall of the People in Tiananmen Square in Beijing on April 22, 1989. (Catherine Henriette/AFP/Getty Images)Several hundred of 200,000 pro-democracy student protesters face to face with policemen outside the Great Hall of the People in Tiananmen Square in Beijing on April 22, 1989. (Catherine Henriette/AFP/Getty Images)

Twenty-eight years ago, China—along with the Soviet bloc—seemed on the cusp of political change.

Beginning with college students and university staff around the country, millions of people joined the nationwide demonstrations—for human rights, an end to corruption, and democratic reform—that had been sparked off by the death of Hu Yaobang, the liberal Chinese Communist Party former leader, in April 1989.

Despite widespread sympathy for the movement, and nearly a decade of economic change and social openness, the CCP declared martial law in Beijing; em Junho 4, 1989, soldiers and tanks of the People’s Liberation Army entered the capital and killed hundreds, maybe thousands of unarmed protesters in Tiananmen Square—the “gate of heavenly peace.”

Crowds of Beijing residents watch the military block access  to Tiananmen Square  in Beijing on June 7, 1989. (AP Photo/Sadayuki Mikami)

Crowds of Beijing residents watch the military block access to Tiananmen Square in Beijing on June 7, 1989. (AP Photo/Sadayuki Mikami)

In the final days before the imposition of martial law, Zhao Ziyang, Hu’s successor to the Party leadership, spoke to the students in Beijing, “We came too late. We are sorry. You talk about us, criticize us, it is all necessary.”

Twenty days after the Tiananmen Massacre, Zhao Ziyang was forced out of office and placed under house arrest. According to the Tiananmen Papers, a scholarly reconstruction of events during the demonstrations and massacre, while Zhao was never formally accused of any crime, he was blamed by Party hardliners for supposedly engineering the pro-democratic demonstrations.

In Zhao’s place the remaining Party leaders installed Jiang Zemin, a man whose deleterious influence in Chinese politics and brutal legacy in the suppression of human rights lingers to this day.

The Paradox of Reform

Following the death of chairman Mao Zedong in 1976, China had begun its “reform and opening up” era, unleashing the entrepreneurial potential of hundreds of millions of Chinese. The crazed fanaticism, state terror, and starvation of the chairman’s rule appeared a thing of the past.

Marx, Lenin, and Mao seemed to take a backseat in the tide of market prosperity and budding political reform. General secretary of the Chinese Communist Party, Hu Yaobang, took an opening and went so far as to say that none of Mao’s ideas were relevant in modern China’s economic modernizations.

Chinese Communist Party Secretary General Zhao Ziyang (C) addresses the student hunger strikers through a megaphone at dawn 19 May 1989.  (AFP/Getty Images)

Chinese Communist Party Secretary General Zhao Ziyang (C) addresses the student hunger strikers through a megaphone at dawn 19 May 1989. (AFP/Getty Images)

And in 1987, the mantle of leadership passed to Zhao Ziyang, a disciple of Hu’s political reforms. Though a high-ranking bureaucrat and a dedicated Party member, Zhao, in the words of scholar Julian B. Gewirtz, “prioritized substance over style” and envisioned a China both rich and democratic. In one of the more radical proposals, he called for the independence of the government from the Communist Party.

Under Zhao’s continued leadership, Gerwitz said in a statement published on the commentary website ChinaFile, “it’s not at all hard to imagine that Chinese society would be much more pluralistic, democratic, law-abiding, justo, and open to the outside world.”

But the Party had its own logic, one that could be seen even before the death of Hu Yaobang and the tragedy at Tiananmen.

Hardliners in the CCP, including Deng Xiaoping, the real source of power and political patronage in the China of the day, had previously acted—as in the example of the campaign to rid China of western “spiritual pollution”—to curb political liberalization. Hu Yaobang was a controversial figure, and the latter half of the 1980s saw his downfall.

Triumph of Party Character

The concept of “Party character”—”dang xing” in Mandarin—was a constant throughout CCP rule, and has proved a formidable tool ensuring cohesion of the communist regime and enlisting cooperation from its individual members.

Class struggle and materialist dialectics, the philosophical core of the Marxist-Leninism enshrined in CCP doctrine, informed the mass murders and unprecedented famine under Mao, and remained unchanged in the years following. Economic development, legal modernization, and loosening of social norms could make Chinese richer and more materially satisfied, but the Communist Party retained its basic ideological character.

At a time when political reforms in the Soviet Union led to the wholesale collapse of eastern European communist regimes, the strength of Party character doomed Hu and Zhao even in their capacities as general secretary—the highest rank in the CCP.

A poster displayed in late 1966 in a Beijing street shows how to deal with a so-called ‘enemy of the people’ during the Great Proletarian Cultural Revolution. (Jean Vincent/AFP/Getty Images)

Zhao Ziyang was not the first Party leader to be disgraced. In the chaos of the Cultural Revolution, brought on by Mao Zedong in the 1960s, General Secretary Liu Shaoqi was hounded by Red Guards as a “capitalist-roader” and brought down as attempts to defend himself with a copy of the Chinese constitution were simply ignored. He was tortured and held in inhuman conditions until his death two years later.

Chen Duxiu, founder of the CCP, was opposed to the use of violence and favored cooperation with the republican Chinese government in power at the time. He was squeezed out of his position and eventually expelled from the Party as a “right-wing opportunist.”

After Tiananmen

Hoje, little trace remains of the social movement that swept through Beijing, Harbin, Shenyang, Guangzhou, Hefei, Chengdu, and other Chinese metropolises in the spring of 1989. Zhao Ziyang lived under house arrest until his death in 2005.

With Zhao’s successor Jiang Zemin, China continued its march into capitalism without democracy. The aims of reform—transparent government, rule of law, greater democratization and growth of civil society—reversed course as money and patronage became the caustic lubricants of an affluent China’s political economy.

Chinese policeman approach Falun Gong practitioners who traveled across China to Tiananmen Square to stage peaceful appeals against the persecution in 2001.  (Courtesy of Minghui)

Chinese policeman approach Falun Gong practitioners who traveled across China to Tiananmen Square to stage peaceful appeals against the persecution in 2001. (Courtesy of Minghui)

While clad in western suits and enjoying the fruits of crony capitalism, the Party organization under Jiang retained the machinery of communism from Tiananmen—and the ideological culture for its use. This time, the offense was not a matter of politics, but a clash of faith.

Dentro 1999, Jiang Zemin ordered a comprehensive campaign to destroy Falun Gong, a Chinese spiritual practice taken up by over 70 million people since its first public teaching in 1992.

And like in 1989, the persecution was foreshadowed by signs of mounting CCP pressure—the slanderous articles of communist pundits like He Zuoxiu, the banning of Falun Gong books in 1996—culminating in the arrests in April 1999 of over 40 Falun Gong practitioners in Tianjin, northern China.

Falun Gong adherents protested, gathering before the CCP leadership compound at Zhongnanhai in Beijing. Premier Zhu Rongji received several representatives inside the building, but his actions, as those of Zhao Ziyang ten years earlier, meant little.

Chinese President Jiang Zemin (eu) together with Premier Zhu Rongji during a departure ceremony at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing 03 Junho 2002. (Goh Chai Hin/AFP/Getty Images)

Chinese President Jiang Zemin (eu) together with Premier Zhu Rongji during a departure ceremony at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing 03 Junho 2002. (Goh Chai Hin/AFP/Getty Images)

Jiang Zemin, who had risen to power in the wake of the bloody resolution of events on June 4th, saw a similar situation in the rise of Falun Gong in the 1990s. He called Falun Gong “the most serious political incident since June 4” in a Politburo meeting, according to scholars.

The 2000s and beyond would see the development of the most brutal persecution campaign in contemporary China—complete with dehumanizing propaganda, labor camp sentences, and the surgical murder of hundreds of thousands for their organs.

Communism is estimated to have killed at least 100 milhões de pessoas, yet its crimes have not been fully compiled and its ideology still persists. The Epoch Times seeks to expose the history and beliefs of this movement, which has been a source of tyranny and destruction since it emerged. Read the whole series at ept.ms/DeadEndCom

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NEW YORK—Two men clad in lather and fur stand side by side with their legs wide and firmly planted on the ground, next to a Bactrian camel. All three stare straight at the camera. You meet their gaze, transcending time and place.

The world has changed so fast of late. We forget it was only about 150 years ago that photographers started to capture images, such as of these two tough and weathered men, traveling the Silk Road with a rather cheerful-looking, two-humped camel. You can start to imagine the trials and tribulations they must have faced carrying goods from perhaps as far from China as the Mediterranean.

The photograph was taken around 1890 by Sanshichiro Yamamoto, a Japanese photographer who established his second photographic studio in Beijing. It is one of 15,000 photographs in Stephan Loewentheil’s private collection of early Chinese photography.

“A Bactrian Camel in Peking,” circa 1890, by Sanshichiro Yamamoto. Albumen silver print. (Courtesy of the Stephan Loewentheil Historical Photography of China Collection)

Loewentheil exhibited about 30 of his photographs, as part of Asia Week New York (March 9–18). That Asian art extravaganza included at least 50 international galleries, five auction houses, and major museums, including The Metropolitan. Loewentheil’s exhibit, “Masterpieces of Early Chinese Photography” was the only exhibition of rare photographs, and they were not for sale.

These photographs of exquisite taste and quality, give you a glimpse of a lost world. The invention of photography at the time of the Qing Dynasty—the last imperial dynasty of China—allowed the depiction of traditional images of a country that looks dramatically different today. The photographs hold clues and remnants of a world we can still learn from and treasure.

Loewentheil chose to collect photographs, in part, because they communicate nonverbally. “It spans nations, it spans languages, and everyone can appreciate it. … They were made to speak without words,” he said in his gallery at PRPH Books on East 64th Street.

Muito pouco photographs showing remnants of China’s ancient past have survived, rendering Loewentheil’s collection invaluable.

“Woman and Child,” circa 1870–1879, by Pun Lin. Albumen silver print. (Courtesy of the Stephan Loewentheil Historical Photography of China Collection)

“Due to cultural phenomenon inside of China, there was a long period in the 20th century where representation of prior cultural manifestations were deemed bourgeois and undesirable, and in many cases they were either ignored or sometimes destroyed,” Loewentheil said.

As a professional book and manuscript dealer, Loewentheil often comes across photographic albums. He buys most of his photographs privately from dealers, and sometimes from major auction houses.

Almost all of his photographs of China were originally owned by travelers, merchants, missionaries, or delegates from other countries, among other kinds of visitors and migrants. “They wanted to bring home images of where they were—the wonders of China. So they bought these photographs and brought them out of the country. Those are the ones that survived,” Loewentheil said.

Moments in Time

A photograph by the Chinese photographer A Chan (Ya Zhen) shows two men casually conversing in front of a small pagoda. A narrow bridge leads to the small structure, which has its entrance and windows wide open to the outside. The pagoda blends perfectly with the trees surrounding it, giving a sense of serenity. The photograph is beautifully composed and in incredibly good condition. The details of the image are very crisp, yet the photograph’s artistic merit is even more commendable.

“Summer House at Longevity Temple, Canton,” 1870s, by A Chan (Ya Zhen). Albumen silver print. (Courtesy of the Stephan Loewentheil Historical Photography of China Collection)

Chan operated a studio in Canton (Guangzhou). Not much more is known about him.

“This is an art that stands up to any photograph that was taken anywhere in Europe or America at a similar time,” Loewentheil said of Chan’s work. “There were Chinese photographers who are as great as the great photographers in the West, and it’s very important that we realize that,” he added.

The Scottish photographer John Thomson was the first to create serious photographic work in China’s interior, traveling by boat up the river Min. He created a book of 80 prints, “Foochow and The River Min” (1873). Only seven sets of his photographs have survived. Thomson was not a government official or missionary, but a professional photographer. He used the collodion process, an early photographic process whereby the exposure was made onto a glass negative with highly flammable chemicals. Ele, assim sendo, had to travel with many crates to carry his equipment, which included a portable darkroom tent.

“Yuen-Fu Monastery Cave” from the book “Foochow and the River Min,” circa 1873, by John Thomson. Carbon print. (Courtesy of the Stephan Loewentheil Historical Photography of China Collection)

The photograph by Thomson, “Yuen-Fu Monastery Cave,” in Loewentheil’s collection looks rather eerie and mysterious. The monastery is perched on a cliff against a black sky. The details of the image are highly defined and crisp. It shows the sensitivity and skill of Thomson who was known for his “photo-journalistic” style of capturing the lives of people in an unassuming way.

Preserving a Legacy

Loewentheil’s photographs of early China are rarely shown to the public and only on occasion to scholars. For preservation, the photographs are mostly kept shielded from the light in boxes, or behind UV plastic when displayed for short periods of time.

Loewentheil’s son Jacob with the help of Stacey Lambrow is currently working on producing a book of the photographs of Thomas Child, the first to systematically photograph Peking (Pequim) in the 19th century.

“The Dragon Boat,” 1870s, by A. Chan. Albumen silver print. (Courtesy of the Stephan Loewentheil Historical Photography of China Collection)

Pequim, as with other major cities in the world, has undergone dramatic change in the growth of newer, bigger, and taller buildings. The growth resulted to a large extent in the disappearance of a way of life—the people, the architecture, monuments, and culture—that Child captured with 200 photographs in the 1870s.

Child lived in China for 20 anos. He worked at the Imperial Maritime Customs Service as a gas engineer, and practiced photography as both an amateur and professionally.

“No. 192 Mongolian Lama,” circa 1870–1879, by Thomas Child. Albumen silver print. (Courtesy of the Stephan Loewentheil Historical Photography Collection)

“Child learned the language, he loved the country. He was very good friends with many of the people in Beijing, which gave him exposure to places that he otherwise wouldn’t have been able to see,” Loewentheil said.

Tão longe, they have acquired 150 do 200 photographs by Child and they expect to have the book published and available to the public for sale in a couple of years.

Stephan Loewentheil has been collecting photographs for over 30 anos. His collection includes 7,000 albumen prints from before 1850 para 1912, e 8,000 photographs taken in the 1920s to the 1940s focusing on architecture in China, as well as an extensive collection of American photography of the 19th century.

“I felt that it would be interesting to preserve the photographic culture, in part, because I think those of us who love beauty and art and truth have an obligation to preserve that which is important," ele disse.

“A Chinese Actress and Actor,” circa 1870, by Lai Fong. Albumen silver print. (Courtesy of the Stephan Loewentheil Photography of China Collection)

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Dentro 2011, Chen Junjie (roughly “Jwin-jyeh”), an average, law-abiding Chinese citizen, had been living the coastal province of Guangdong for nine years when he decided to apply for local residence.
Despite everything else seemingly being in order, the Guangdong police turned down Chen’s application without explanation. He also encountered difficulties with his housing loans and driver’s license.
It was only in 2015 that, in a Kafkaesque episode, the authorities informed Chen that the source of his bureaucratic woes was a three-year prison sentence he had supposedly served for a 2008 attempt to rob a bank in the Panyu District of Guangzhou, the provincial capital.
Read MoreA Chinese Woman Had Her Identity Stolen 12 Years Ago. This Is What Happened When She Found Who Did It.
“I’ve never been to Panyu and I’ve not been in jail either,” Chen, who is from neighboring Hunan Province and lives in the megalopolis of Shenzhen, protested in an interview with The Paper, a state-run web publication based in Shanghai that reported the case on May 17.
By pulling some connections, Chen was allowed to confirm that his identity had been stolen by the now-released convict, to whom he bore no resemblance.
Chen’s misfortune represents an embarrassing oversight, if not evidence of corruption, by the police, court, and prosecuting body, as they ought to have confirmed the real convict’s identity.
de fato, lawyer and scholar of criminal law Mao Lixin told The Paper that such a case like Chen’s should be “virtually impossible,” and that he suspects “the personnel investigating and handling the case neglected their duties.
To make matters worse, police seemed to work at a snail’s pace in correcting Chen’s record, even after getting his fingerprints. “I’ve called many times to check up and every time they said they’re still processing the matter,” ele disse.
Netizen comments expressed sympathy for Chen, and following media coverage, the police announced promises to “process his case as soon as possible.
Read MoreParents of Children Poisoned by Tainted Chinese Vaccines Suppressed by Regime Censors

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SYDNEYUnpublished investigations of corruption in China by state media have been used to blackmail the targets of the investigations, according to a journalist with People’s Net, the online version of the broadsheet People’s Daily, who tendered her resignation earlier this month.
When she arrived for a holiday in February, Wu Junmei, the former reporter, reconfirmed everything she had been pondering in China. A week after arriving, she quit the Chinese Communist Party. A few months later, she resigned from her job, and seems unlikely to return to China.
In an exclusive interview with Epoch Times, Wu described her career trajectory, discussed the illicit dealings of People’s Net, and explained what influenced her decision to sever ties with her employer, and the regime.
Dark Dealings
Journalists in the Chinese Communist Party’s media mouthpiece organizations have long been required, besides the usual propaganda work, to engage in investigating malpractices and abuse of power in industry, government, and society. But unlike regular media outlets, this work doesn’t always get published.
For years, such reports were packaged as “internal referencematerials, to be distributed only among the Party elite. But more recently, they’ve come to be used for another favored activity among officials: making money.
It’s this practice that Wu found so unjust and frustrating.
Wu used to work with a provincial television broadcaster before moving to the People’s Net branch in Hebei Province in 2012. She had spent most of her time in the public opinion office, investigating complaints from people living along the Yangtze River about companies polluting China’s longest waterway.
She soon learned, Contudo, that the regime’s mouthpiece was not on the side of the people.
“A normal media would report the facts, and then criticize and condemn the phenomenon it had uncovered, or even go to the related authorities to get them to look after the interests of the people,” Wu said. “But People’s Net doesn’t do this.
Ao invés, People’s Net would use the interview recordings and photographs Wu gathered as proof that that polluting companies were engaging in illegal operations, and then go to blackmail the companies.
“They would cut deals with the companies and make illicit profits,” she said. Observing these transactions caused Wu to feel “deeply pained and uncomfortableover the past two years.
Disgusted with the work she was being made to do, Wu turned to religion for solace. Once her bosses found out, Contudo, she was chastised for having a faith other than Marxism.
Faith
Depressed with her job, Wu reached out to a house church at the end of 2014, and for a time found spiritual comfort in Christianity.
Contudo, the Party leaders at People’s Net learned of her newfound faith after she performed in a Christmas Day program in 2015, and sat her down to remind her about the Party’s only truly accepted dogma.
“Because we are mouthpiece of the Party, you are only allowed to hold the Marxist view on journalism. We are doing political work here, and you cannot have any other faith,” a Party leader told Wu. Local state security officers payed her a visit.
The televised forced confession of Zhang Kai, a Christian Chinese human rights lawyer renowned for defending persecuted Christians and other disenfranchised groups, also struck a nerve.
“I was especially angry because I am a Christian,” Wu said. She had caught the confession during a stopover in Guangzhou Province before boarding a flight to Australia, where her son is studying.
“Look at how I, a mere worker at the state mouthpiece, was treatedshe said. “I trembled in fear just thinking about what they must’ve have done to Zhang Hai; I’m aware of what he was subject to in detention.
Renouncing the Party
Wu finally made up her mind to resign from her job and renounce her Party membership, after reading uncensored information in Australia this February.
Doing a Google search, Wu stumbled across a torrent of stories and information about the Tiananmen Square Massacre and the persecution of Falun Gong, uma disciplina espiritual tradicional chinesa, among a range of other human rights abuses in China.
Later, she found The Nine Commentaries of the Communist Party, a nine-part editorial series published by this newspaper in 2004.
“When I first read the series, I had a hard time accepting it,” Wu said. “Those in the news business on the mainland presumed that Falun Gong was criticizing the Chinese Communist Party because Falun Gong hadn’t been treated well by the Party.The Nine Commentaries is often distributed by Falun Gong practitioners in China, in paper and CD-ROM form, to raise awareness about the historical and contemporary crimes of the Communist Party.
“After reading the Nine Commentaries from cover to cover, Contudo, I really think you can describe it as an X-ray of the Partyits analysis of the Party is just so thorough,” Wu said.
Wu’s resignation letter (courtesy of Wu Junmei)
Wu added: “Epoch Times is telling people the truth, and this media has a historical mission and responsibilityto tell the people the truth of things. Not only does it speak out for Falun Gong, it also speaks for all Chinese people.
Within a week after she arrived in Australia, Wu renounced the Party through the Tuidang Center, a nonprofit organization that solicits statements of renunciation from mainland Chinese on its website. To date, sobre 236 million people have announced their withdrawal.
Later, on May 6, she faxed a letter contained only three sentences to the People’s Net of Hebei Province, on a company letterhead. “Letter of Resignation,” it said at the top. Underneath: “I don’t want to glorify them anymore! I don’t want to deify them anymore!! And I definitely don’t want to blackmail for them anymore!!!”
Peers
Wu Junmei hopes that her fellow journalists in China will reflect and learn from her experiences.
“People working in the regime mouthpiece should stop waving flags and rallying around the regime,” she said. “Just like that editor from Southern Metropolis Daily who resigned after realizing that he had been on his knees for far too long.
Yu Shaolei, an editor in the the Guangzhou-based Southern Metropolis Daily’s culture department,

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On May 16, a Chinese woman writing on her WeChat social media account described how she had been almost dragged into a van by an unknown middle-aged man who grabbed her by the throat while saying that her father owned him money.
Even as the woman, a student living in Chaozhou, southern China, struggled and screamed for help, no one came to her aid.
“This society has become cold, people are indifferent even when they see others in danger,” the woman, whose name was not revealed, wrote. “After today’s experience, I don’t dare ever go out alone again. I’m in a state of shock even now.”  
A six-second clip from video taken by a roadside surveillance camera shows the man dragging the woman into the backseat of the van. According to Guangzhou Daily, a local newspaper, the woman was momentarily stunned after receiving a blow to the head. But as the man moved himself to the driver’s seat and prepared to start the engine, his captive escaped via the back door. The van left without her.
Police say the 36-year-old man, Ke Mouxi, was apprehended on May 18.
Chinese have become increasingly concerned with the general apathy people display when confronted by such incidents, particularly involving more vulnerable members of societywomen, crianças, and the elderly. This April, the incident of a woman who was nearly abducted in a low-budget Beijing hotel sparked widespread outrage on Chinese social media when it was found that neither hotel staff nor the police took her case seriously.
One netizen lamented that criminals discourage bystanders from taking action by portraying themselves as related to the victims
“With a shout of ‘she owes me money,’ ‘she’s my mistress,’ ‘she’s a whore,’ or ‘she’s a thief,’ the human trafficker can get away with seizing a female student and taking her off to a remote valley where some guy is awaiting his new wife.”
Another wrote: “If [bystanders] can get away with saying ‘I didn’t recognize what was going onafter the fact, it’ll just lead to more and more of these incidents.”
Read MoreThis Chinese Woman Was Subject to Medieval-Style Torture in Prison for 3 Years
Read MoreYoung Chinese Man Demands Compensation for Bad Supermarket Product, Then Is Mysteriously Attacked by Thugs

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When I first came to the United States 20 anos atrás, everything seemed very expensive to me, almost astronomicalespecially vegetables. But over the years, the cost of basic foods has not risen much in the United States, whereas almost everything in China has become much more expensive, even though people’s incomes are much lower.
My friends in Guangdong recently told me that vegetables there are far more expensive than in the U.S.I was shocked. Some Internet users say that prices were only temporarily high during the Chinese New Year festival, and that is was to compensate farmers who had to work during that time. Contudo, prices did not come down after the New Year. Even after the winter storms passed and the weather turned warmer, vegetable and pork prices remained high in March and continued going up at an alarming rate. The high price of groceries in China today is truly shocking.
Apples
In the 1990s, Red Delicious apples in a U.S. supermarket were 99 cents a pound, roughly equivalent to 9 yuan. Although I had a monthly stipend of $2,000 at the time and could afford to buy the apples, I did think they were expensive. Naquela hora, apples in China were only one tenth of what they cost in the U.S.
Twenty years later, the price of Red Delicious apple in the U.S. is around $1.29 per pound. Percentage-wise, this price increase is much less than the average income increase. Além disso, supermarkets always have specials, and the price frequently drops to 99 cents. At the current conversion rate, it is about seven yuan a pound, and this price is similar to the cost of Red Delicious apples in China today.
This is a typical example of rising costs in China, which have increased by several hundred percent, with some items going up more than one thousand percent.
Vegetables, Meat and More
In comparison to China, the increase of grocery prices in the U.S. has indeed been minor. Cabbage was very cheap 20 anos atrás, sobre 30 para 40 cents a pound; nowadays, it is over 40 cents a pound. A large cucumber used to be 50 cents; it is now 67 cents. A package of scallions were 99 cents; they are now $1.29. The price of pork was $1 para $4 a pound and still is in the same range today. For a few dollars one can buy a big pack of chicken parts. The price of beef has not changed much either. In my opinion only egg prices have gone up quite a bit: three dozen eggs are $5 agora. But overall, food prices in the U.S. are indeed stable.
Income Levels
To really understand my shock over China’s soaring food prices, we need to compare income levels. Prices in China have increased a lot, but salaries have increased very little. Take Guangzhou for example, the average monthly income is about 7,000 yuan ($1,080), while the average monthly income in Virginia is around 25,000-30,000 yuan ($3,860-4,633), or roughly four times more.  
E ainda, prices for food, alcohol, and tobacco rose 6 percent year on year in China, according to data from China’s National Bureau of Statistics. Fresh vegetable went up 35.8 por cento, and meat rose 16.5 percent on average, with pork going up 28.4 por cento.
There is a huge income difference between China and the U.S., but food prices in China are higher.
Food Quality
In recent years, to ease the problem of food being unaffordable for many people, Chinese cities have implemented a so called “vegetable basketproject. A variety of special government funds and support policies also exist. People at the bottom of the social ladder have a hard time making a living, so grocery prices are therefore a great concern.
There are also problems with food quality. Produce sold at farmers markets is less expensive, but not necessarily of good quality. Supermarkets have a little better quality assurance, but prices are much higher.
China’s official explanation for the high price of vegetables and meat is often “weather and transportation problems.But in the U.S., be it Thanksgiving or Christmas, blizzard or hurricane, prices in supermarkets don’t go up, and they even have lots of discounts.
China’s prices have caught up with the international level very fast, but people’s incomes have not caught up. It shows how far away China still is from being a mature market economy.
Xinlu Duwu is a popular Chinese blogger who lives in the United States where she works as a lawyer. This is an abridged translation of a Chinese article posted on her personal blog.

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China produces by far the most salt of any country on earth—sobre 90 million tons a year. Of this figure, 91 percent are non-edible industrial salts that contain heavy metals and other dangerous substances. But with regulations lax and for the sake of a quick buck, manufacturers nationwide are ignoring these details.
On April 26, it was reported by China National Radio that 35 tons of industrial salts had been packaged as edible salt and partially distributed to the market in Shijiazhuang, northern China, at the time discovery by police investigation.
The partial seizure is just the tip of a massive illicit industry operating on a national scale, from Beijing to the edges of China in far-flung provinces like Yunnan, Zhejiang, or the territory of Inner Mongolia.   
Industrial salts marked for human consumption may contain hazardous metals such as lead, arsenic, mercury, or nitrites. The gradual buildup of these substances in the body contributes to nerve damage and cancer.
The Shijiazhuang workshop raided by police was found to run a minimalist production process: after procuring the industrial salt, workers would shovel it into small plastic bagsto be sold on the local farmer’smarket or local stores after being mixed with genuine table salt.
MORE:Tsinghua Professor Slams China’s Inability to Implement 13th 5-Year Plan
A machine used to produce packages of fake industrial salt found in Guangzhou, Guangdong Province on May 5, 2014 (Liu Yunfei/South China Rural Newspaper)
National Scale
Last July, a small workshop in Taizhou, Jiangsu Province, was caught selling 20,000 tons of industrial salt over a period of seven years to seven provinces and major cities, including Beijing and neighboring Tianjin.
According to Zhou Lügang, deputy head of salt administration in Taizhou, said that the case involved an unusually high figure. Twenty thousand tons of salt is enough to supply five million peoplethe population of Taizhou, incidentallyfor a year.
Fake table salt is either used directly by unfortunate customers, or used to pickle vegetables in workshops, supermarkets, school cafeterias, and restaurants. The salt itself is very cheap to produce and can be priced lower than genuine table salt, making it an attractive choice for the unaware.
MORE:The Frightening Ways China Recycles Used Syringes and Other Medical Waste
MORE:CHINA TRANSLATED: Choose Your Poison
Lax Regulations
The illicit and profitable trade is aided by the fact that industrial salts can be purchased in bulk by anyone with commercial documentation from the chemical industry, including a wide range of associated firms.
Worse, Chinese legal bodies stipulate that only cases involving over 20 tons of fake salt will be prosecuted. Such finds are rare: according to a regulations worker in southern China speaking to local state media, workshops tend to produce small, fixed quantities and immediately sell their stock as it comes out.
Fake salt producers either use stable sales targets, or conceal their products in secret warehouses while awaiting demand. All this, the regulation worker told the South China Rural Newspaper, makes it difficult for police to nail culprits red-handed, and has “severely impacted the judiciary’s ability to impose punishment against the criminals.
Dentro 2012, do 182 cases involving fake salt filed in Guangzhou, southern China, police could make arrests only in 21 cases and sentences were handed down for only 13. Dentro 2013, only seven involved arrests and courts made just four sentences.
Penalties are light: less than two yearsjail time for a minor transgression, the regulation worker said, so many offenders return to the trade upon completing their sentences.
MORE:China Takes Next Steps in Global Gold Strategy

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The Beijing Auto Show, which begins April 25, will witness a skirmish between foreign and domestic automakers aiming to capture consumer interest amidst a downbeat growth climate for the industry.
Beijing alternates with Shanghai to host China’s flagship annual auto show. Merely five years ago, a 2011 Beijing Motor Show was an afterthought for foreign automakers as only a handful participated and Japanese car manufacturers unveiled no new models there.
Today China is the world’s biggest automobile market, and its Motor Show has gained the same significance as annual industry events in Detroit, Geneva, and Tokyo. It’s also a window into China’s massiveyet bizarrely fragmentedcar market, with foreign sports cars showcased next to their Chinese copycat doppelgangers.
This year, global automakers reserved some of their biggest launches for Beijing. The pomp and circumstance underscores both China’s importance to automakers as well as the pressure of acquiring market share in an increasingly downbeat growth environment.
China is the biggest market for General Motors, which sold 3.6 million vehicles there last year, uma 5.2 percent increase. Mercedes-Benzwhich lags behind its German rivals BMW and Audi in Chinasold 373,459 vehicles there last year, uma 33 percent increase from 2014. Toyota’s luxury division Lexus saw its China sales jump 14 percent to 88,500 dentro 2015, becoming the brand’s second biggest market after the United States.
Major debuts in Beijing this year include the Acura CDX subcompact crossover, Citroen C6 (China-only), Infiniti QX Sport SUV concept, 2017 Lexus IS, Mazda CX-4 wagon, Porsche 718 Cayman, and a new Volkswagen Touareg concept.
Battle of SUVs
SUVs have become a bright spot in 2016 for the Chinese auto industry. Sales of SUVs soared 52 percent last year and helped drive overall car sales gains in March after a muted January-February period.
 
The Infiniti QX Sport SUV concept. (Photo courtesy of Infiniti)
While government tax cuts no doubt assisted, SUV sales jumped 46 percent in March versus a year ago, according to China Association of Automobile Manufacturers (CAAM). Sedans, por outro lado, suffered a 3.3 percent sales drop.
Demand for SUVs is forecasted to continue in 2016, as consumers trade up from compact sedans and find low gas prices offsetting SUVstypically higher operating costs.
But foreign automakers were largely watching from the sidelines during in the recent SUV surge. The five best-selling SUVs in the first three months of 2016 were all Chinese branded. Chinese manufacturers account for 65 percent of the SUV market, and with lower prices, they dominate the lower end of the market.
“The Beijing Motor Show will be the platform for international and domestic auto makers to showcase new products, specifically SUVs in the aim to capture greater market share,” Namrita Chow, an analyst at IHS Automotive, escreveu em um relatório recente.
New vehicle lineups at the Beijing Motor Show reflect this trend. Foreign automakers such as Honda, Mazda, and Volkswagen are bringing several crossover and SUV models to the show, hoping to carve out a larger piece of China’s SUV sales growth.
Competition is expected to be steep. Fiat Chrysler AutomobilesJeep brand will debut its China-manufactured Renegade. Honda Motor Co. plans to unveil two SUVs designed for China. Domestic brands such as Great Wall, China’s leading SUV brand, and Chery both plan to unveil at least one new SUV at the Beijing Motor Show.
Later this year, Shanghai Automotive Industries Corp., Guangzhou Auto Co. and Dongfeng Motor Co. are expected to launch as many as three new SUVs each.
Overcapacity Concerns
Foreign automakers are investing billions of dollars into manufacturing plants in China. General Motors opened a $1.3 billion Cadillac assembly plant near Shanghai this year, and will open another $1 billion factory in Wuhan next year. South Korea’s Hyundai plans to open a plant near Beijing later this year and another in Chongqing in 2017.
 
Teaser photo of the 2017 Lexus IS to debut at 2016 Beijing International Automotive Exhibition. (Photo courtesy of Lexus USA)
Investment research firm Sanford C. Bernstein projects a 22 percent increase in China’s car manufacturing capacity in the next two years to 28.8 million vehicles annually. That figure approaches the sum of the U.S. (17.5 million units) and European Union (12.6 million units) automobile markets combined.
CAAM estimates that Chinese passenger vehicle sales will reach 22.8 million in 2016. If that figure holds, Chinese vehicle sales would need to increase by 26 por cento em 2017 for demand to meet capacity.
China’s auto sales during the first three months grew 6.8 por cento, but sales are inflated by a sales tax incentive China implemented last September on small cars, which account for 70 percent of all sales. Consumers buying cars with engine displacements of 1.6 liter or less pay 5 percent sales taxhalf of the 10 percent tax levied on all other vehicle purchasesthrough 2016.
Given the anticipated expiration of incentives, “2017 will be a very difficult year for the auto industry, probably no growth,” Yale Zhang, managing director of Automotive Foresight, a Shanghai consulting firm, told the New York Times.
Dentro 2009 e 2010, a similar tax incentive propelled vehicle sales. When the reduction expired, auto sales effectively flattened in 2011 e 2012.
“Nobody foresaw how quickly demand would slow. Prices will fall. Profitability will suffer,” said Michael Dunne, a consultant on Chinese auto market strategy.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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Partido Comunista Chinês (CCP) leader Xi Jinping’s anti-corruption campaign is escalating and heading towards the ultimate “tiger”Xi’s political rival, former CCP leader Jiang Zemin.
Many of Jiang’s high-ranking supporters have been investigated in the campaign. Epoch Times has secured an exclusive report that Zeng Qinghong, the former vice president of China and the second-in-command of Jiang’s faction, is under house arrest, while his brother Zeng Qinghuai is barred from traveling overseas.
The former vice chairman of the Central Military Commission (CMC), Guo Boxiong, has been handed over to prosecutors. Guo is another supporter of Jiang.
On top of that, it is rumoured in Shanghai that Jiang’s two sons, Jiang Mianheng and Jiang Miankang, are being internally controlled by the Central Commission for Discipline Inspection (CCDI).
House arrest
U.S.-based China expert Ji Da believes that Guo’s being handed over to prosecutors is a prelude to the arrest of Jiang and Zeng Qinghong.
Ji Da told Epoch Times that the Zeng brothers are in the soup. Zeng Qinghong is not only under house arrest in Beijing, but also forbidden from travelling overseas, like his brother. His brother was previously rumoured to have been arrested.
Zeng’s son Zeng Wei is in Australia, while his daughter Zeng Baobao has been absenting herself from sales reports presentations in Hong Kong.
Zeng Qinghong, 76, is the Jiang faction member who used to run Hong Kong. Sources close to the government say he plotted the coup to overthrow Xi and played a major part in the conspiracy to assassinate him.
As an official and commissioner in Hong Kong under the regime’s Ministry of Culture, Zeng Qinghuai was active in the political, business, and cultural circles of Hong Kong and mainland China. He collaborated with the former vice president of China Central Television (CCTV), Li Dongsheng, to source pretty women for high-ranking officials.
The corruption cases of CCTV and tycoon Che Feng are both linked to the Zeng family.
It is believed that the Zengs are the next target in the anti-corruption campaign. Zeng Qinghong’s niece Wang Xiaoling was removed from office as the vice-mayor of Guangzhou and the secretary for disciplinary inspection at the end of last year.
At the beginning of this year, the state media again stated that nobody is exempted from the anti-corruption campaign, implying that Zeng Qinghong would be under probe.
According to a Beijing inside source, Zeng’s secretary Shi Zhihong and former Hong Kong Chief Executive Tung Chee-hwa recommended to Xi that Leung Chun-ying should be the Chief Executive of Hong Kong.
The source said that Zeng thought it was easy to manipulate Xi, but little did he expect that Xi would crack down on the allies of the Jiang faction, striking fear into the gang.
The source predicts that when Jiang and Zeng are removed, Leung will be punished as well.
Sons under surveillance
Shanghainese lawyer Zheng Enchong said he learned from a reliable source that Jiang Mianheng and Jiang Miankang are under internal surveillance. Their crimes have been thoroughly investigated and their assets frozen.
It is only a matter of time before the scandal is exposed, the CCDI is coming down harder on the Shanghai clique, and Jiang’s allies are terrified Zheng said. Translated by Su Lin. Edited by Sally Appert.

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Charles Lee, um U.S. cidadão, foi preso pela polícia chinesa quase assim que ele desceu do avião no aeroporto Guangzhou, no sul da China, em janeiro 2003. Para os próximos três anos, ele foi interrogado, submetidos a sessões diárias de lavagem cerebral, e forçados a se alimentar através de um tubo forçou para baixo suas narinas em seu estômago.
A polícia estava esperando Lee porque eles estavam lendo seus e-mails—tudo graças à obra de uma grande empresa de tecnologia americana. Cisco Systems, a gigante de redes, desenvolveu e forneceu a tecnologia que as autoridades de segurança pública chinesa precisava descobrir o que Lee estava correspondendo com os praticantes da disciplina espiritual Falun Gong, olhando para encontrar formas inovadoras e de alto perfil para expor uma perseguição draconiana contra eles, de acordo com documentos arquivados em um tribunal norte da Califórnia.
O título do novo filme do diretor Leon Lee é uma referência ao "mais tecnologia de ponta de, mas a escala e sofisticação do projeto Golden Shield.”

Desde o início de 2000, A Cisco Systems tem ajudado o Partido Comunista Chinês configurar e manter um produto de segurança sofisticado que permite que o Partido para rastrear, perfil, identificar, e suprimir os praticantes de Falun Gong.
As consequências sinistras deste "estabilidade social” aparelho, apelidado o projeto Golden Shield, foram dramatizadas recentemente no primeiro longa-metragem do Peabody Award-winning diretor e produtor Leon Lee.
Real-Vida Drama
Director Leon Lee aceitar seu prêmio de "Harvest Human,” com Crystal Chen na 74ª Cerimônia Peabody Awards, em Nova Iorque, em Maio 31, 2015. (Ilya S. Savenok / Getty Images para Peabody Awards)
Dentro 2015, Lee "Harvest Human” ganhou o Prêmio George Foster Peabody, um prêmio de mídia distinto e seletiva de transmissão. O documentário tratadas com os contratos assassina do regime chinês de órgãos para transplantação de ainda vivos praticantes do Falun Gong e outros grupos perseguidos na China.
Falun Gong, uma disciplina espiritual tradicional chinesa, atraiu a ira do ex-chefe do Partido Jiang Zemin após estimativas oficiais colocado o número de adeptos na 70 milhões para 100 milhões de pessoas. Em julho 1999, Jiang ordenou que todos os órgãos do Partido alvo praticantes do Falun Gong e "arruinar sua reputação, arruiná-los financeiramente, e destruí-los fisicamente,” relatórios contemporâneos de Falun Gong monitores de direitos humanos disse.
Quando você se aproxima um negócio na China … você tem que entender o que suas metas e objetivos são, o que eles valorizam … [e] você tem que construir uma solução para ajudá-los a alcançar esses objetivos.— William Nuti, ex-presidente da Cisco Ásia

quadros do partido que cumpriram com os requisitos subiu rapidamente fileiras do regime, enquanto aqueles que não conseguiram com sucesso "transformar,” ou "erradicar” praticantes de Falun Gong caiu em desgraça.
"The Edge Bleeding,” o título do filme de Lee, é uma referência ao "mais tecnologia de ponta de, mas a escala e sofisticação do projeto Golden Shield,” Lee disse ao Epoch Times em uma entrevista por telefone.
Eliminando 'Problemas’
O sistema de Golden Shield é um controlo e vigilância "solução altamente avançada,” "um termo técnico utilizado pela Cisco para descrever uma abrangente, conjunto bem integrado de produtos e serviços projetados especificamente para eliminar os seus clientes’ problemas específicos ','” de acordo com um 2011 ação de classe arquivado em um tribunal norte da Califórnia por Charles Lee e 12 Os cidadãos chineses que foram vítimas deste sistema.
O aparelho permite que os agentes de segurança pública chineses para monitorar e arquivar as atividades de Internet de praticantes do Falun Gong, , bem como identificar os praticantes nas estações usando tecnologia de reconhecimento facial. A polícia chinesa pode, então, aparecer sem avisar na casa de praticantes, efetuar prisões, e depois usar as informações recolhidas a partir de praticantes’ histórico de navegação para ajudar na sua "transformação” (zhuanhua)—um eufemismo para sessões de tortura e lavagem cerebral brutais.

praticantes de Falun Gong são considerados com sucesso "transformado” quando renunciar à sua fé, jurar lealdade ao Partido Comunista, e, em muitos casos, auxiliar na transformação de outros praticantes.
Um componente-chave do design da Cisco é um sistema de vigilância da Internet ", que como os olhos e ouvidos do aparelho compreende snoopers tráfego Internet, / analisadores de vídeo de imagem altamente avançadas, e segurança de rede características inovadoras capazes de detectar, rastreamento e identificação de crentes Falun Gong on-line,” a queixa diz.
Esta é integrado com a detenção, notificação, e sistemas de rastreamento para que os crentes do Falun Gong pode ser localizado, isolado, e sujeito a conversão forçada. O Golden Shield inclui bancos de dados de praticantes do Falun Gong, "Especificamente para dar acesso de segurança chinesa às informações sensíveis para facilitar a conversão forçada através de tortura de Falun Gong crentes com base em suas circunstâncias sociais e económicas individuais, e a quantidade de alavancagem que pode ser exercida contra eles através de ameaças contra membros da família, companheiros adeptos, e outros,” a queixa diz.
Guanxi Building '’
CEO da Cisco Systems, John Chambers, na 2006 conferência Oracle OpenWorld em San Francisco. (Justin Sullivan / Getty Images)
De acordo com a ação judicial, Cisco está plenamente consciente da "douzheng do regime chinês” (luta violenta) campanha contra o Falun Gong e foi marketing a sua solução Golden Shield "” ao longo daquelas linhas. Pelo menos uma apresentação Cisco se gaba de que seu aparelho de segurança vai ajudar o regime "combate" Falun Gong’ má religião e outros inimigos,” e no site da Cisco ainda afirma que os seus produtos vai garantir "estabilidade social" de uma nação—jargão do partido para a supressão arbitrária de Falun Gong, dissidentes, e minorias étnicas.
As técnicas utilizadas na Golden Shield, primeiro desenvolvidos para atingir Falun Gong, parecem ter sido implementado de forma mais ampla na década seguinte como o regime continuou a reforçar o seu aparato de segurança formidável. No final dos anos 2000, dissidentes não-Falun Gong foram relatando que a polícia teve acesso em tempo real às suas histórias de bate-papo on-line.
A ação também detém ex-CEO da Cisco John Chambers, e Fredy Cheung, vice-presidente sênior da Cisco para a Região da Grande China, responsáveis ​​pela violação dos direitos humanos nos Estados Unidos, uma vez que a supervisão das operações Golden Shield e seus temas de campanha de marketing a partir da sede da empresa em San Jose, Califórnia.
Chambers, agora presidente-executivo da Cisco, é conhecido por ter se reuniu com o ex-líder do Partido Jiang Zemin três vezes, o autor principal da perseguição ao Falun Gong, e pode ter cultivado alguma forma de "guanxi” (relação recíproca-benefício) para selar o negócio Golden Shield, de acordo com documentos judiciais.
William Nuti, o ex-presidente da Cisco Ásia, oferece um vislumbre de como guanxi com Jiang

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After years of brutalizing and bullying Chinese citizens, China’s infamous urban enforcers have found a new victimWestern fast food chain mascots.
In the afternoon on April 10, city law enforcement officials, or chengguan, took away a Ronald McDonald statue outside a McDonald’s restaurant in the Huadu District of Guangzhou, according to Yangcheng Evening News.
Ronald McDonald broke at the ankles after some forceful handling by the chengguan, who are known throughout China for their thuggish behavior. Left abandoned on the pavement was the statue’s oversized red shoes on a green pedestal.
The chengguan claim that they had targeted the Ronald McDonald statue because it was obstructing the walkway, and it was their duty to improve the city’s image. When asked by Yangcheng Evening News why the animal statues similarly located on a pavement outside a shopping compound across the street from the McDonald’s wasn’t also removed, the chengguan said “We enforce the law fairly and we do not target any specific company.
Ronald isn’t in for a lengthy incarceration: “According to the related regulations, we only have the rights to temporary hold the item; we will return Ronald McDonald,” an official with the local subdistrict authorities told Yangcheng Evening News.
Some netizens on Sina Weibo, China’s popular microblog site, were highly amused at the incident. “LYX Good Personfrom Guangdong wrote: “Ronald McDonald said: ‘It must be that old man from Kentucky who reported me to the police.’
Others were not pleased to see another episode of the chengguan exercising their power arbitrarily. A netizen from Guangdong wrote: “How could it be blocking the sidewalk? Didn’t the store owner rent the place? Doesn’t the entrance to the rented place belong to him?”
“Chengguans are bullies who have committed so many scandalous acts. And if something goes wrong, they blame it on temporary chengguan officers,” wrote “Xiri Heliufrom Hunan. “Ronald McDonald was taken away under his own roofI guess Ronald McDonald simply didn’t pay his chengguan protection fees.
The brutality of chengguan is legendary: In a prominent case on July 2013, a dozen chengguan officers from Linwu County in Hunan Province brutally beat up fruitseller Deng Zhengjia with his own scales, and eventually killed him. The chengguan continued to kick Deng after he had collapsed on the roadside, and refused to call an ambulance.

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Frustrated with the perpetually foul-smelling restrooms at school, two Chinese elementary school siblings recently carried out a fact-finding mission, and presented their headmaster with a colorful proposal for better toilets.
The proposal is entitled: “A Call for Improvement: On the School Restroom Environment.The signatures on the bottom right reads: “Third Grader Lai Zeming; First Grader Lai Qiuning.” (Sina)
Lai Zeming and Lai Qiuning, a third grader and a first grader, attend Beijing Normal University Nan Ao Experimental School in the south China province of Guangzhou. After realizing that neither of them had moved their bowels in school, the brother and sister decided that someone had to be proactive about the situation.
“I’ve been studying here 3 years and I’ve never done a number two on campus,” Zeming told Chinese news portal Sina on March 24.
The siblings visited the different restrooms in the school, and brother Zeming wrote down their observations. Zeming also did an Internet search for information about restroom hygiene, and made sketches which sister Qiuning colored.
The siblingsfinal product, a five-page report entitled, “A Call for Improvement: On the School Restroom Environment,” was presented to the school headmaster Zheng Tiejun.  
This illustration shows four children grimacing in agony because they refuse to move their bowels in the school’s smelly bathrooms. The words in the left blue panel reads, “The school restroom smells terrible,” while the one on the right green panel reads: “Must go home for a number two.” (Sina)
“A Call for Improvementfeatures stick figure drawings in comic-style panels, straightforward observations of the school’s toilet conditions (interestingly, the kids found that the staff room bathrooms or those “frequented by teacherswere clean while toilets elsewhere were either dirty or smelly), and helpful recommendations on how to fix the situation (“improve ventilation with ventilation fans,” and “take suggestions from other students”).
“I didn’t expect to receive the proposal,” Zheng the school principal told Sina. Zheng praised the Lai siblings and promised to take action.
Titled “What to Do When You Cannot Hold Back,” page two of the proposal shows 3 possible solutions: (From left to right) pinching one’s nose, holding one’s breath, and breathing with one’s mouth and then leaving quickly. (Sina)
Many Chinese Internet users praised the Lai siblings for taking initiative to rectify a problem. When Global Times promoted the story on Sina Weibo, a popular microblogging service, netizens seized the opportunity to make a few jibes at the nationalistic state-run news outlet.
“Shouldn’t the Global Times criticize such kind of behavior? Since it affects social stability, how can the restrooms be allowed to stink under China’s socialism?” queried a netizen from Fujian.
“These two brave children have such lovely names. I’m going to be brave and ask: When will Global Times provide constructive suggestions to the top Party leaders? Can the Global Times not tell how badly Party media stinks,” wrote a netizen from Hubei.   
Page three, “Four Restrooms on the First Floor,” shows that only one restroom (upper left), the one next to an office, smells good, while those in the science lab and the corridor are either stinky or dirty. (Sina)

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Em março 8, after four days of emergency care, a four-year-old boy in southern China succumbed to complications arising from a vaccine provided courtesy of the state healthcare system.  
The boy, surnamed Shen, had developed a fever after being injected with the vaccine in the morning of March 4, the Health and Family Planning Bureau in Zijin County, Guangdong Province, told state media. An autopsy in underway and results are expected to be out within a month.
Intensive efforts to save the child’s life failed as his conditions worsened.
The dead child and his father. (via Guangzhou Daily)
The illict sale of improperly-stored vaccines in eastern China’s Shandong Province recently reported by state mediaa mother and daughter team had made 500 milhões de yuan (sobre $70 milhão) in the lucrative businesswas found to be unrelated to the Guangdong case, which involved medicaments provided by state-run healthcare.
Sudden, mysterious deaths of toddlers in Chinese hospitals have resulted in various scandals over the last few years. In January, a 3-year-old boy being treated for a minor fever died after being given an IV, and police were brought in to restrain the distraught parents.
MORE:Chinese 19-Year-Old Who Sold Daughter to Buy iPhone and Motorbike Turns Himself InThis Heartbreaking Diary of a Chinese Boy Ignored by His Smartphone-Addicted Mother Is Going ViralThis Heartbreaking Diary of a Chinese Boy Ignored by His Smartphone-Addicted Mother Is Going Viral

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Clean air has become a rare commodity in China, and villagers in China’s southern province of Guangdong are capitalizing on it.
With slogans such as “Buying Air Is Buying Health,” “Air Without Any Industrial Pollution,” “Air With the Highest Amount of Anions in Guangdong ,” and “Air from 1,400 Meters Above Sea Level,” villagers of Lianshan Zhuang and Yao Autonomous County are peddling clean air packaged in plastic bags to tourists visiting the local Jinzi Mountain, reported Chinese news portal Sina on March 20. A big bag of air goes for 30 yuan (sobre $4.60), and a small bag, 10 yuan.
While some tourists simply posed for pictures with the bags, and were content to simply enjoy the clean air freely available, others haggled with the vendors and brought some bags home.
Zhi Chenglin, a Jinzi Mountain local, was first to come up with the idea of selling air in plastic bags. Zhi told Sina that he got tired of inhaling smog after working for a delivery company in Guangzhou for three years, and decided to get a job back home. He hopes that his business will remind people living in the cities to cherish a clean environment.
People inhale air from plastic bags. (Sina)
Internet users on China’s popular microblogging site Sina Weibo expressed their amusement at both the vendors and consumers of the product. One netizen using the nickname “I Very GYDfrom Chongqing wrote: “Even if it is really clean air, can someone who opens the bag on the spot tell me how it is any different from the air in the surroundings?
“It is more than just a business hype since there is an actual demand in society. Imagine, in a few years China could start importing a new product; what will be the volume of imported air and its trade value?” wondered “A Bottle of Nu’er Hongfrom Shandong.
Yunnan netizen “ykhykwrote: “People in Canada and Hawaii also sell clean air. Just not in carcinogenic plastic bags, but in specially made canisters.
Guangdong is home to more than 60,000 factories, according to Places Journal, a San Francisco-based publication which focuses on urbanism and architecture. Citydwellers in Guangdong’s smoggy industrial areas thus enjoy driving up the many forested mountains in the province for some fresh air.
Pollution is a serious health issue in China. Dentro 2013, an 8-year-old girl from Jiangsu Province was diagnosed with lung cancer, becoming one of the youngest sufferers of the disease; doctors attributed her illness to long-term inhalation of smog.

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Xinhua, the Chinese regime’s mouthpiece news agency, recently mistakenly called Chinese leader Xi Jinping “China’s last leaderinstead of “China’s top leaderin a news article. The incident has sent Chinese Internet users buzzing.
The article, published on March 13, featured upbeat assessments about China’s economic outlook from Chinese officials and economists who attended the annual sessions of China’s puppet legislature and advisory body. When Xi Jinping is quoted in the third last paragraph expressing confidence in the China’s long-term economic prospects, despite current troubles, he is referred to as China’s “lastleader (“zuihou”) instead of the standard “topleader (“zuigao.”)
The Chinese characters on the left read “zuihou,” or “the last,” while the characters on the right read “zuigao,” or “the top.
This error is the latest in a string of apparent lapses that have occurred in recent months, and comes less than a month after Chinese leader Xi made a high profile tour of state media headquarters to bring the Chinese Communist Party’s propaganda apparatus to heel. Chinese Internet users have floated a number of suggestions for the typo, which is unusual given the level of scrutiny political messaging receives in China.
While the article was later amended on Xinhua’s website that day, several other Chinese news outlets who also carried the same report simply deleted it from their websites. It’s unclear if the journalist in question was punished for the typo.
Chinese journalists have in the past found their livelihood threatened for making mistakes of a similar magnitude: Último dezembro, four reporters were suspended after the state-run China News Service reported that Xi Jinping had “resigned” (“cizhi”) instead of having given a “speech” (“zhici”) while in Africa on tour. Em fevereiro, three journalists at the semi-official Southern Metropolis Daily were punished (one fired, two received demerits) after running a front page with two separate headlines that when read vertically, suggested the demise of Party media.
Johnny Lau, a Hong Kong based political commentator, told the US-based Chinese-language broadcaster Sound of Hope that Xinhua is usually highly cautious, and hardly ever makes copy editing errors. Lau added that it is nearly impossible to discern any “hidden agendabehind the mistake or if the perpetrator will face any consequences.
Chinese netizens on the popular Chinese microblogging website Sina Weibo generally delighted at Xinhua’s error, issuing wry comments like “Xinhua is finished”; “Xinhua has finally learned to report major news”; “an accidental slip of the truth”; and “this is Xinhua’s only correct statement.
Other netizens felt that the error was definitely political, but was not correctly expressed. A Weibo user going by the name Liu wrote: “The Xinhua journalist made an obvious errorit should be ‘Chinese Communist Party,’ not ‘China,'” referring to the phrase “China’s last leader Xi Jinpingin the article. Another netizen, a civil servant form An Hui, wrote: “I reckon that the journalist meant to say, ‘the Communist Party’s last leader.’
Some netizens linked the error to ancient Chinese conceptions of heaven’s will and prophecy. Hunan netizen “Pan Gu Opens the Skywrote in a comment on a Hong Kong news website: “Make no mistake, that’s the will of heaven.A Guangzhou netizen wrote: “If Liu Bowen’s prophecies are accurate, [Xi Jinping] will be the last leader…”
Liu Bowen is a famous military strategist and statesman who lived during the late Yuan and early Ming dynasties, and has been called the “Chinese Nostradamusfor his prophecies. It is unclear to which prophecy the Guangzhou netizen is referring to.
Contudo, in response to a rare snowfall in tropical southern Guangzhou earlier in the year, local netizens started linking the collapse of imperial dynasties, from the Southern Song to the Qing, with instances of unusual weather in the tropics. Such aberrant phenomenon, they argue, drawing on traditional Chinese beliefs, is more evidence that the Chinese regime is bound to the same fate as the Chinese dynasties that have come before it.

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