December 17, 2011

The Soccer Mocker: The Economist gets a kick out of ridiculing Chinese football

As I discussed in my previous post, The Economist has published two special articles about China as part of its special Christmas-holiday double issue. I discussed the first of the two in my last post, and intend to discuss the second one here.

In "Little Red Card", The Economist mocks China's attempts at becoming a proficient footballing nation, and, no pun intended, gets a kick out of it.  Even the mention of the efforts of the Chinese government in this direction, which are indeed noteworthy when they are compared to India (the only country that can actually be compared to China in this regard) is done as if doing a favor.

The Economist and China's Soft Power: Et tu, Sun Tzu?

A pathetic attempt to discredit Sun Tzu as an instrument of Chinese Soft Power

As part of its Christmas-holiday double issue, The Economist has published two articles about China: one about its Soft Power and another about the dismal state of Chinese football. John Micklethwait, the Editor-in-Chief, describes the double issue as one in which "Journalists write about odd subjects, pet subjects, any subjects that took their fancy during the year and that did not fit into the normal run of our coverage." Well, "odd" is certainly not the word that can be used to describe the two above, as they actually fit into the standard Economist rhetoric about all its China-related reporting. The apple doesn't fall far from the tree, and even the "pet subjects" that "did not fit into the normal run" of their coverage are not far different from, well, their normal coverage.

In "Sun Tzu and the art of soft power" (I intend to discuss the second article in my next post), the newspaper questions, without offering an alternative, the validity and usefulness of using Sun Tzu as an instrument of Chinese Soft Power. A couple of idiotic points stand out in the analysis. 

December 1, 2011

India v/s China: We've got Facebook! What've you got?

An interesting analysis in TIME magazine, to the extent that it tries to be an analysis:

And don't forget to check out these two accompanying arguments, one for India and one for China:

The Case for India: Free to Succeed

The Case for China: The Power of Planning

I plan to blog about this general issue sometime soon. Right now however, I just can't help commenting on just two points for the time being, particularly because many westerners have humongous misconceptions about these issues. Almost every article on the topic contains at least a reference to these two fallacious points. 

November 15, 2011

China, Libya, and Political Bullshittery from The Economist

The Economist, my favorite newspaper, has been engaging in its own peculiar style of political bullshit reporting about Chinese foreign policy nowadays. Take a look at this:
It is not just in Sri Lanka that the hypocrisy of Western attitudes has rankled. In China, a commentary in Global Times, a Beijing newspaper, highlighted another aspect of it: “The more urgent question is why the countries that led a righteous crusade against Qaddafi, and rightly or wrongly are now triumphing in his defeat, are the very same that up until recently were busy trying to be his friends?”  So, of course, was China. But two hypocrites do not make a right.

August 19, 2011

All your Schadenfreude are belong to us?

Lecturing others amounts to schadenfreude
Wait. What?

An interesting phenomenon seems to be in the air. With the current financial crisis in America and unrest in Britain, it appears that multiple western media outlets cannot resist the temptation to interpret China's and other countries' responses in terms of "Schadenfreude". Although not as amusing as accusing the politburo of smoking weed, it certainly has all the qualities that characterize the distinct flavors of garrulous western reporting about China and Asia in general.

In response to the crises in Washington, Xinhua, in a much cited phrase (One that the international media has gone completely gaga over), called upon the US to "cure its addiction to debt" . This was interpreted by The Economist as schadenfreude, claiming that "regional celebrations" have erupted in Asia over the debt crisis. It further crowed: