Wednesday, October 19, 2005

The 88s

Using Blogger's Blog Search, I have recently stumbled across a few blogs that I had never noticed before. The most notable of the new blogs (or at least new to me) that I have found is The 88s. The site, which covers a mix of topics, has quite a few great posts related to China.

The first post that caught my attention was The 9 Men Who Run China, which looks at the members of the Politburo Standing Committee and concludes:
  • "All nine are engineers.
  • Only one was educated outside of China (Luo Gan), and in East Germany of all places.
  • There are no women on the PSC.
  • All nine are Han Chinese.
  • 6 out of 9 are Jiang proteges.
  • 4 out of 9 went to Qinghua.
  • Gigantic Coke-bottle glasses are standard issue on the PSC."
After analyzing the current bunch, The 88s looks ahead, offering some thoughts on who will lead the Fifth Generation but I won't rip off everything written there. You'll have to follow the link for the rest.

Another post that is certainly worthy of a read is Theory vs. Reality. Included in that post are some guidelines for understanding China:
  • "If you don't speak/read Chinese, forget it.*
  • If you don't understand that Chinese politics is an outgrowth of Chinese culture in many ways, forget it.
  • If you don't understand how local government works in China, forget it.
  • If you don't understand where China was 30 years ago, forget it.
  • If you get hung up on the word "communism," forget it.
  • If you can't accept contradiction, forget it."
Go give those posts and the rest of the blog a read.

*If not being able to speak Chinese is hampering your China analysis, try some Chinese lessons at ChinesePod. (Hat Tip: Simon World)