This week’s Heard on Weibo offers translation of postings about the violence in Huzhou, Zhejiang province, where store keepers revolted against increased taxes; China should provide nuclear protection to North Korea; a young man being arrested for founding a pro-democracy website; what is “dignity”; and the continued activism to free the blind rights lawyer Chen Guangcheng (latest NYT report here and two powerful video clips: here and here). Click on date below item for link to the original.
- Zhou Tianyong / 周天勇/(Professor at University of Science & Technology Beijing) : The revolt against increased taxes in Huzhou is a milestone. In the past I have appealed many times regarding over-taxation, excessive fees and fines, high cost for small and micro businesses to borrow money, high rate of social security funds, and the labyrinth of exactions. Nobody listened to me. There have been efforts to clean up administrative fee-collection, but the more they clear up, the more numerous and heavier the fees are. This incident is a warning. [The government] should lower taxes and clean up fees immediately to prevent large-scale revolt against taxes and fees. Allow small and micro businesses to live and secure their employment, so that both the nation and the people may live in peace. [latest pictures here from a netizen on the ground]
- Si Ma Pingbang/司马平邦/(Another famous Wu Mao—五毛)：【Can’t let North Korea become Libya】Having witnessed the fall of the wealthy Gaddafi regime that once leaned toward the west, China must come to the realization that its biggest crisis comes actually from the Korean Peninsula, and if the North Korean regime collapses like Gaddafi, it will be a fatal disaster for China. Therefore it is time to provide nuclear protection to North Korea. The interest group in the Eurasian continent led by China must stay solid, and China is responsible for itself only when it is responsible for this group.
- Zhu Ge 2009/诸哥2009/(netizen): 27-year-old netizen Cao Haibo (曹海波) was arrested in Kunming on charges of inciting subversion of state power. Cao founded zhenxingzhonghua.com late last year that promotes judiciary independence and fairness, independent and truthful education, and independent and free press. He also opened a QQ group to discuss about democracy. His wife, 6-months pregnant, pleaded: “My husband has never broken the law. He was busy doing business during the day, and all he did was going online in the evenings to promote democracy. To arrest him for this and accuse him of subverting the government, I don’t understand.”
- (Guo Yushan—郭玉闪—is the founder and director of Transition Institute in Beijing—传知行社会经济研究所—and a close friend of Chen Guangcheng. He reposted two earlier Weibo items about Chen Guangcheng being beaten by a group of men led by the head the Shuang Hou township. Only the first item is translated; the second one is similar.)
Weibo 6: Repost the event of Guangcheng being beaten recently. Because Guangcheng had managed to make a phone call earlier to the outside world, on July 28, , Zhang Jian and a group of men led by him searched Guangcheng’s home. When they found a calling card in the coal ash, they beat Guangcheng and Weijing [CGC’s wife] for 4 hours in front of their 6-year-old daughter. His 80-year-old mother had been sent away beforehand, and, when she returned and found Guangcheng and Weijing being severely beaten, she howled throughout the night. See screenshots for details. —-Little Secretary [Sina Weibo administrator’s name], please do what your conscience dictates.
- Reservist for the Founding of Army/建军伟业预备役/jian jun wei ye yu bei yi/(netizen, visitor to Linyi): Someone called my room a moment ago asking what I was doing here in Shandong. I said I was here to visit Chen Guangcheng. She said Chen Guangcheng was a spy, and I asked her what evidence she had. She said she had enough evidence but she was not obliged to show it to me. She warned me to mind my own business, and she said her people knew everything said on my Weibo. Is this a threat? In addition, why are they doing this since Linyi municipal government supposedly granted permission for my visit?
A satellite view of Dong Shi Gu, Linyi, Shandong.
- Wang Keqin/王克勤/(Investigative journalist)【Thoughts on Dignity】At the mention of the word “dignity”, I would see, in my mind, the eyes of those who pleaded kneeling on their knees and the things that happened to them and cannot be wiped off. I would hear what many petitioners and help-seekers have told me: “All we ask is for the government to treat us like human beings.” And I would also recall countless awkward, helpless and humiliating scenes many of my fellow journalists and I have experienced.
- @tengbiao Teng Biao/滕彪 /Chinese rights lawyer Fu Guoyong/傅国涌(author, web commentator): From Zhai Qiao village (寨桥村) in Le Qing (乐清) to Dong Shi Gu village (东师古村) in Linyi (临沂), from Qian Yunhui (钱云会) to Chen Guangcheng (陈光诚), one in the south and the other north, in two different villages, the fate of these two ordinary Chinese paints the truest picture of our time. And they represent today’s China more than the mega films, countless lavish jamborees, GDP numbers and Confucius Colleges. If you don’t know what have happened in Zhai Qiao village and Dong Shi Gu village, you couldn’t possibly understand China.
- (The following image, found on Weibo, is a “retouch” of a picture of Mao Zedong meeting the Red Guards at the onset of the Cultural Revolution. Mao was standing at a corner of the Tiananmen Rostrum. The Chinese in the center reads, “It is the helmsman who steers the [ship] sailing on the sea!” )