Hey, Wen Jiabao, Premier of the People’s Republic of China: You cannot scare The New York Crank. Nor can the Crank be intimated. I know what you are. You are a crypto-capitalist-neo-communist-totalitarian. Or something like that. And nya nya nya to you!
Anyway, the Crank paid a visit to the far right expats at the No-Pasaran blog the other day (link in the links column at right) to see what they were up to.
They were up to celebrating (more or less) the fact that they had been banned in China. (You’ll have to scroll down a lot. They put up multiple posts almost every day.)
Seems there’s a website called The Great Firewall of China. http://www.greatfirewallofchina.org/test/
You type in any website and watch a map of the world as your URL bounces around between servers in Europe and Asia until it comes up with an answer. Banned. Or not banned. If you’re banned, nobody in China can read your stuff.
Yeah, so big deal. How could this apply to The New York Crank? I don’t even remember mentioning China here in this Crankyspace, much less saying something hostile about them, although maybe I forget some passing mention.
Then, today, the rebellious high school kids at the Tattoo Blog (link also at right) headlined the fact that THEY have been banned by Peking, too.
This got me curious. So I crankily tested my URL several times and whaddya know? Yup. The New York Crank is banned in China as well.
I began playing around some. I typed in the URL of Antioch College in Ohio, a small liberal arts college known for its leftsy rebelliousness. You'd think that'd be just the kind of place Peking might like. No such luck. Banned.
Then I typed in the URL of Earlham College, a small liberal arts college in Indiana, not known at all for being left wing. Not banned.
Wikipedia? Banned. My pal Buce at Underbelly (URL at right) the poetry-reading, literature-quoting bankruptcy lawyer? Not banned.
C’mon, Buce, get with it man. Get off that literature kick and say something political, so you can join the Legion of the Banned. It’s getting to the point where if you’re not banned in China, people may think you’re not all that interesting.
In the course of trying to figure out why The New York Crank is persona non grata in Peking, several thoughts occurred to me:
1. Capitalism is not a cure for totalitarianism. In fact, as we’re seeing in China and other Marxist nations that have changed to semi-capitalist entrepreneurship (viz. Russia) capitalism can be a concomitant to totalitarian rule. Oh my gosh, that may be true of the current occupants of the White House, too!
2. Democracy does not necessarily bring on Conservative-style, laissez faire capitalism, although that currently seems to be the case in this country. But the Scandinavian nations, to pick an example or three, seem to accommodate the popular will and many aspects of welfare state-ism.
3. The surest measure of whether a nation will go totalitarian long-term is the national character. Russia had secret police carrying out assassinations when the Czars were in power. They’re still doing it today. China was totalitarian, chaotic, often brutal and more-or-less capitalistic under the pre-Mao emperors and maybe even the late Chiang Kai-Shek. It still is today. Cuba is always a strongman-ruled basket case no matter who was in power. I think you get the idea.
4. Finally, I still wonder: How did I put a bug up Wen Jiabao’s ass? I mean, how did I put it there prior to this particular post? Well, I’ve got a conspiracy theory for you. I keep knocking W and the Bush Administration on this blog. I point out their flaws. I poke fun at them. I get irate at them. So I ask you – if China is getting upset with me, might not that mean that somebody in the Bush Administration is a secret Chinese Communist agent, and China doesn’t want us anti-Bushniks calling attention to what they’re up to?
Nah! Of course not.
On the other hand…