Love and the Law: A Propaganda Tale of Woe

Every generation a story emerges which perfectly encapsulates the mood of the times. Euripides perfectly summarised the Ancient Greek love of murdering all of your immediate family members in Medea. The Canterbury Tales provides a fascinating insight into medieval life. Capturing life in Regency Period Britain for the upper middle-classes was Jane Austen’s speciality. And, of course, Keeping Up With The Kardashians perfectly displays our modern degeneracy and descent into a society of soulless harridans with plastic injected into our grotesquely oversized buttocks.

Yet what magnum opus has China pumped out to capture a window on its society as it entered the new Millennium? Some might say Shanghai Baby by Wei Hui. To those people I spit in their faces and later throw their children down disused mine shafts. Nay, the greatest work of literature produced in China around the year 2000 was the epic The Contest of Love and the Law produced by the Beijing Police and stuck on billboards across the city. Thought lost to the world for the last 15 years, luckily a copy has finally re-emerged. Originally stolen by a drunk British student on his way home from The Den in 2002, this blog is proud to present a translated performance of…

The Contest of Love and the Law

OR

Don’t Marry That Man From Jinan Who Didn’t Go To University

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The Contest of Love and the Law.

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This is how the masterpiece looks in its glorious entirety.

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Edited by notable and acclaimed turn of the century police poet: Liu Renqing. We salute you.

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Notice how Xiao Qing’s hand is just millimetres away from Cheng Ming’s cock. The dirty little minx deserves everything that is coming for her. Notice the rocking red turtle neck on Cheng Ming: years before Steve Jobs started wearing them.

In 1980, 18 year old Cheng Ming graduated from a certain Beijing upper secondary school. He didn’t get into university, but managed to find himself a girlfriend. Xiao Qing was a much-liked girl. As soon as Cheng Ming knew her, he became deeply attracted to her. He appeared to be a real manly man, occasionally acting as her guardian angel. He was considerate towards her and even spent money on anything for her. Xiao Qing was conquered by Cheng Ming’s love, so the couple started seeing one another.

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You will know this is China in the winter as everybody is wearing their coats inside: just outside the picture you would have seen the window wide open in order to allow the minus twenty fresh winter air in. Readers of Party Members will be interested to note that the mother is drinking a refreshing glass of F-Max: the lightly sparkling fish-flavoured drink made from workers’ piss.
However, after meeting Cheng Ming, Xiao Qing’s parents really didn’t like him. Every time Cheng Ming would visit the house, the parents were indifferent to him. Cheng Ming would always buy them presents on his visits in order to impress his future father and mother in law. Yet no matter how hard Cheng Ming tried, Xiao Qing’s parents still wouldn’t agree for them to be together. Since Cheng Ming was kind to her, Xiao Qing decided not to let her parents’ disapproval stop her. They still remained a couple. After several years, Cheng Ming couldn’t leave Xiao Qing’s side.

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In the world of “Love and the Law” everybody likes to wear plain unbranded coloured shirts. I’m sure there is some symbolism going on here: the strong woman wearing revolutionary red, the evil man wearing capitalist blue.
However, without the approval of her parents, Xiao Qing wasn’t prepared to marry Cheng Ming. Cheng Ming harboured a deep grudge towards Xiao Qing’s parents because of this. Following this understanding, the relationship between Xiao Qing and Cheng Ming entered into a crisis. Xiao Qing realised that Cheng Ming wasn’t the man she thought he was, and that they had very different personalities. They began to argue frequently over small things. After several arguments, Xiao Qing decided that things were too hard, and was increasingly disappointed in Cheng Ming. Thus she decided to break up with him.

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If this was the present day they’d both be staring at their phones right now.
One day in 1985 Xiao Qing passed Cheng Ming a break-up letter, saying that her parents didn’t agree with them being together and that she must listen to her parents.

Cheng Ming was very angry and thought that Xiao Qing had led him on; concluding that this was all due to her parents’ meddling. At the same time, he also felt that he had spent a lot of money on Xiao Qing and her family. He thought: “Although you lot have not been benevolent, I have not been righteous! I want all my money back. I’m not losing both my girlfriend AND my money.”

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Lovely thermos of HOT WATER behind the father there. Obviously a man who cares about his healthy. Little does he know that his hot water won’t protect him from Cheng Ming’s hammer of justice in the next panel.
On November 16th 1985, Cheng Ming brought a dagger and entered the house of Xiao Qing’s parents in Beijing’s Fengtai District. At the time her parents were not home, so Cheng Ming used a key he had previously copied to open the door and enter the house. Then Xiao Qing’s father returned home, and upon seeing Cheng Ming in the house asked him what he was doing. Cheng Ming said: “I have come to get my money back.” Xiao Qing’s father said: “We don’t owe you any money, get out.” Cheng Ming said: “I bought many things for Xiao Qing and you two. Now she won’t stay with me. I have come back to settle the score.” Xiao Qing’s father said: “You’re talking nonsense. Your relationship with Xiao Qing is your own doing, we don’t owe you anything.”

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Cheng Ming finally takes his Thor cosplay too far.
The two of them argued back and forth. Cheng Ming thought back to all the attitude that Xiao Qing’s parents had given him in the past, all of their absolute opposition to him being with Xiao Qing, and he couldn’t help but to be full of hate towards Xiao Qing’s father. In his eyes, Xiao Qing was the enemy standing in his way of happiness, and he became filled with murderous rage. He turned around and pulled out a hammer that he kept on his person, and violently hit Xiao Qing’s father three times on the head. Xiao Qing’s father collapsed onto the floor. Fearing that he wasn’t dead, Cheng Ming pulled out a knife and slashed him several times across the neck, also stabbing him several times in the chest with his dagger, until Xiao Qing’s father was dead.

(Can I just say how completely implausible it is that Cheng Ming would have not one, but THREE murder weapons about his person. A glass of cold water would probably have been sufficient.)

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As a foreigner who first visited China in the 1990s, I can attest that the bed covers are an authentic depiction of pre-2000 bed covers. I also had blood on my bedroom floor too.
Cheng Ming dragged the body into the bedroom and placed it next to the bed, then covered the body with a blanket. After killing Xiao Qing’s father, Cheng Ming still felt it wasn’t enough. So he hid in Xiao Qing’s house waiting for her mother to return. After some time, Xiao Qing’s mother came home. Before she could even speak, Cheng Ming leapt over and viciously stabbed her in the chest and neck with his dagger. Xiao Qing’s mother fell into a pool of blood. Cheng Ming dragged Xiao Qing’s mother’s body into the bedroom, covered it with a towel, then sat in the outer room waiting for Xiao Qing to come home.

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For a woman who has just seen her parents stabbed to death and has a bloody knife being pointed towards her face, Xiao Qing looks remarkably nonplussed. Her face is only emitting the type of mild disgust shown upon, say, finding that the person before you in the toilet didn’t flush.
That evening after six o’clock, Xiao Qing finished work and came home. When she opened the door she saw Cheng Ming approaching her from the north room with a dagger in his hand – she couldn’t help but be shocked. Cheng Ming said to her: “Don’t move, come with me into the room.” Xiao Qing was terrified as she followed him in. After entering the room she said: “What the hell has happened here?” Cheng Ming said to her angrily: “I will tell you straight, I have killed your parents. Listen to me, I cannot let you go.”

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It must be difficult for Xiao Qing and the police to continue their conversation with the police vans outside still continuing to keep their sirens and lights on. Still, it is probably quieter than living next door to a Chinese apartment that is being redecorated, so perhaps they are used to it. Also, where in the Beijing-Jinan vicinity is there a nice uncluttered police station that has a wide boulevard outside it with room to park two large police vehicles? So many questions…
To stop Xiao Qing from running away, Cheng Ming used a rope to tie one of her hands to the bed. He tied the other hand to himself. The next afternoon Cheng Ming decided that he could stay in the house no longer, and told Xiao Qing that she was to go with him back to his hometown. Xiao Qing was afraid that he would kill her, so she could only say yes. After arriving at Beijing train station, Cheng Ming bought two train tickets to Jinan. After boarding the train, Cheng Ming felt that Xiao Qing couldn’t possibly run away, so he leant over the table and went to sleep. As soon as the train arrived at a station, Xiao Qing seized her chance and ran off the train and straight to a police station to make a report.

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“YOU CAN’T ESCAPE THE LONG ARM OF THE GIANT SQUARE-JAWED CHINESE POLICE AND THEIR HANDCUFFS OF JUSTICE! NOBODY CAN!” Cheng Ming also looks like he is sporting a massive erection in this panel. Well done, lad.
After waking up, Cheng Ming realised that Xiao Qing had run away. He knew she would go report to the police. Therefore he decided to change trains and fled to Longhua town in the Jing County of Hebei Province. Changing his name to Cheng Chen he hid for awhile. At the beginning, Cheng Ming was nervous all day and night. He realised that he had committed a fatal crime, if he was caught there was no doubt that he’d be executed. Hence he started to have nightmares every day. In his dreams the police would suddenly appear in front of him before locking him in handcuffs and dragging him off to a police car. Occasionally when walking down the street, if he spotted a uniformed police officer, even if it was just a security guard, he would think that they had come to arrest him.

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Women hold up half the sky. Boxes too in this story.
In his extreme fear, the days slowly passed. Cheng Ming realised that nobody knew he was a murderer on the run – the police hadn’t taken any action against him. Hence he gradually recovered his courage. No longer did he spend the whole day hiding in a small rented room; he began to go out everywhere. Not long after he found himself a job and built up the appearance of being a very honest person. In his job he was more hard-working than others. Whenever his neighbours needed help he would always gladly assist. Normally he was a quiet person, somebody who didn’t want to cause any trouble. Everybody considered him to be a practical, capable and honest person: somebody who could be a friend and help out in time of need.

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“I love you darling, which is why I have brought you to the muddy banks of this traffic overpass. The diesel fumes are beautiful, but not as beautiful as you.”
Before he knew it, several years passed by, and Cheng Ming had settled down in Jing County. In his heart he thought: “Several years have gone by, the police have probably forgotten about me. I hope that Heaven can protect me and let me continue my life this way.” Now that his work and life were in place, the almost 30 year old Cheng Ming decided to seek out marriage. Before long a woman called Feng Jie was introduced to him. As soon as they met they had a good impression of one another. Feng Jie really liked his Beijing accent and thought he was cultured, polite, honest and capable. Cheng Ming also wasn’t too picky about Feng Jie, as long as a woman liked him and was willing to spend her life with him he thought it was enough. Cheng Ming kept his past a secret and after one year they were married.

(There seems to be some inconsistency here in Cheng Ming’s back story. Here it says he has a Beijing accent, but earlier it says his hometown is Jinan. Also, why did he choose Hebei as his place to hide out? Come on Beijing Police, get your facts straight!)

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If that is a speaker system next to the stereo in the top right corner then – despite his many crimes – Cheng Ming was the most badass muthafucka in 1990s Beijing… even when wearing a v-neck sweater.
After getting married, Cheng Ming was thoughtful towards Feng Jie in all ways, and after the birth of their son, he was a shining beacon to Feng Jie and his son and carried out the role of a good husband and father well. In order to give his wife and son a better life he thought of many ways to earn some extra money. Afterwards, they purchased a house in his work unit and also a tractor. The money in their pocket was growing bigger all the time. They bought several appliances for the house. Feng Jie also started to spend lots of money and would often buy fashionable clothes; because of this their neighbours started to envy them.

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The artist just gave up on the policewoman’s face, didn’t he?
Cheng Ming was secretly proud of the fact that he had evaded the law and was living a happy life, however in 1999 the whole country carried out the task of looking for him. One day in September the Fengtai District police received news from the Jing County police that the missing murderer Cheng Ming had appeared in Jing County. On hearing this the officers quickly arrived in Jing County and prepared to catch Cheng Ming. However, it was as if the crafty Cheng Ming had smelled them coming, and he had already hidden elsewhere. The officers found nothing at Cheng Ming’s house. When they asked Feng Jie she said she wasn’t clear where her husband was, and the officers could only leave empty-handed.

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“Darling, do you ever feel that we could be fictional cartoon characters in a government propaganda campaign? I don’t know any other 1990s working class families in Beijing with their own corner office, especially families led by men from Jinan who didn’t go to university. Something just doesn’t feel right. I’m scared.”
After hiding out, Cheng Ming realised that there were no further movements so decided to return home. Feng Jie asked him: “Why do the police want you? What have you done wrong?” Cheng Ming replied with an understatement: “I had a fight with somebody and beat them into a vegetable state.” Feng Jie said: “Is it really because of this? Are you lying to me?” Cheng Ming said: “How could I lie to you?” However, don’t tell anybody else about this. If I’m really arrested, what would happen to you and our son? What would happen to our family? I can’t bear to be without you and our son. Right now only you can help me. As long as you don’t tell the police they won’t be able to find me.”

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In this panel, Cheng Ming decides to flee to Puyang in Henan Province rather than go to jail. Personally, I would have chosen jail.
When she heard that her husband had really committed a crime, Feng Jie felt extremely nervous. She considered urging her husband to surrender himself so that he would receive a lenient punishment. However, after thinking it over, she felt her husband was speaking the truth. He was the foundation of this family, the whole family depended on him. If he was really arrested, what would happen to her and her son? Furthermore, if other people knew her husband was a criminal, where would she be able to show her face? When she thought of that she decided to keep her silence and not go to the police. Although Feng Jie had said she wouldn’t go to the police, Cheng Ming thought that there were too many eyes nearby watching him, so he decided to go and hide out temporarily in the city of Puyang in Henan Province.

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I’m not sure that adding the lipstick to the blue-tinged background really helps. Feng Jie looks like a necrophiliac’s dream come true. Either that or this is a David Lynch movie.
In Puyang, Cheng Ming pondered that he could no longer stay in Jing County. Since the police had already been to his house to look for him, there were definitely people who knew he was a criminal on the run. If he appeared at home again, he couldn’t be certain that nobody would report him. After much consideration, he decided to let Feng Jie sell of all the household items and come with him to Puyang. He gave Feng Jie a phone call: “I am now in Henan. Sell the house and the tractor and bring yourself and our son to Henan.” Feng Jie asked: “It sounds like you’ve committed a serious crime. Why won’t you dare to come home?” Cheng Ming said: “Look how we’ve bought a house and a vehicle, other people misbelieve that we have a lot of money. Some people can get very jealous and you can’t be sure they won’t try to blackmail us. It’s better that we change location and save ourselves the trouble.”

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The women in Cheng Ming’s life only appear to own red or yellow clothes. Xiao Qing did have a green jacket in panel 2, but that was only in exchange for the green hat she gave Cheng Ming after 5 years of illicit pre-marital sex.
Feng Jie asked: “Is it really because of this?” Seeing that Feng Jie didn’t quite believe him, Cheng Ming simply and openly said to her: “I have committed a serious crime, but I have already reformed into a better person. I really can’t bear to lose you and our son, I don’t won’t you both to become a widow and orphan. I love you too much. In this world I only have one person close to me. Only you can help me. We are husband and wife, bring our son and come to Henan.” Cheng Ming’s words moved Feng Jie so she agreed to Cheng Ming’s request. She quickly sold the house for 35,000 yuan and also sold the tractor plus all the other household belongings that were worth money. Then she brought their son and went to Puyang together to be reunited with Cheng Ming.

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I have NEVER seen this many police in Beijing take a matter so seriously unless it was a drunk foreigner giving out free cigarettes on Sanlitun.
After Cheng Ming’s family disappeared from Jing County, the police did not rest in tracking him down. After much investigation, they finally found out Cheng Ming’s new address. On the night of April 24th 2001, the police in Henan’s Puyang City arrested Cheng Ming and Feng Jie and returned them to Beijing. On August 30th 2001 the No.2 Beijing People’s Procuratorate charged Cheng Ming with the crime of murder and Feng Jie with the crime of harbouring him, and sent them to the No. 2 Beijing People’s Middle Court for trial. The Court thought that Cheng Ming had disregarded the state law, and had carried out cruel means to deliberately take the lives of others resulting in two people dead. This behaviour already amounted to the charge of murder, but his criminal nature was especially evil, deceitful, and ended in serious results. He represented a serious danger to society and should be punished in full accordance of the law.

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Cheng Ming and Feng Jie were sentenced to be handcuffed to dummies of police officers in a Beijing Police Waxworks Museum for eternity. Let that be a lesson to all.
Feng Jie knew clearly that Cheng Ming had committed a crime. When the police sought to arrest him, she aided Cheng Ming in evading the sanctions of the law. These actions were enough to amount to the crime of harbouring and should be punished in full accordance of the law. On 17th September 2001 the No. 2 Beijing People’s Middle Court sentenced Cheng Ming to death according to the law and to be deprived of all of his political rights to the end of his life. Feng Jie was sentenced to two years detention, with a suspension of two years. The master criminal Cheng Ming finally received the full punishment of the law a whole 15 years after his crime. As for Feng Jie who should have had enough of an average citizen’s consciousness of the law to report Cheng Ming to the police, her regard for the law was weak so she helped her husband to escape. Thus she also received due punishment. This should give cause for everybody to consider: between love and the law, which one should you choose?

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“Today’s episode of government propaganda has been brought to you by the letters B, J and the number 8.”
The Law of the People’s Republic of China.

Section 232: The crime of murder is punishable by death, life imprisonment or a minimum of ten years imprisonment. If the motives are lighter, it carries a sentence of between 3 to 10 years imprisonment.

Section 310: The crime of knowingly harbouring a criminal from justice, either financially or through other means, carries a sentence of 3 years or less imprisonment. If the crime is more serious, it can receive a sentence of 3 to 10 years imprisonment. For repeat offences, cases will be considered individually.

ATTENTION WOMEN:

THIS IS WHY YOU SHOULD NEVER MARRY A MAN FROM JINAN WHO HASN’T BEEN TO A GOOD UNIVERSITY AND DOESN’T OWN HIS OWN HOUSE. 

YOU HAVE BEEN WARNED.

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If you enjoyed this post you may also enjoy my book Party Members – a dark comic fantasy that exposes the corrupt underbelly of modern China.

The People’s Liberation Army Pictorial Paper

Recently I was searching through my old drawers in the hope of finding a piece of retro-treasure that I could sell to fund this month’s booze requirements. Perhaps a Millennium Falcon or even a homemade Tracy Island play set. Alas, no. However, I did stumble upon some of my old Chinese propaganda collection.

Back in the day I used to collect quite a large amount of Cultural Revolution bric-a-brac. Today, for your viewing pleasure, I present to you some selected passages from the May 1976 edition of the People’s Liberation Army Pictorial Paper – just four short months before the Great Helmsman was due to pop his clogs and enter the big Communist Party in the sky.

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A solid choice for the front page of the PLA Pictorial. The classic Chairman Mao in full colour waving at the masses. I don’t think there was ever an edition of the PLA Pictorial that didn’t have Mao as the front page celebrity – a bit like how Philip Schofield is ALWAYS on British TV no matter what you are watching.

The main story of the month was the monuments meeting between Chairman Mao meeting some representatives from the Laotian Communist Party. Remember, this was just four months before Mao shuffled off this mortal coil and he is looking decidedly decrepit in this photo. Lie him down, stick him in a glass coffin, and he doesn’t look much different now.

Inside front cover: lovely red-tinged (literally AND politically) poster wishing victory to the Great Proletarian Cultural Revolution.

Only the front and back pages, plus a central section, are in colour. The rest of the magazine sees a huge decrease in quality and even the paper is a little rougher. The same can’t be said for the content though! Here we have a fascinating pictorial on how the Party’s decisions are benefiting the masses all over China and being welcomed by everybody. Surely true Communism was only mere months from being achieved if it hadn’t been for that meddling Deng Xiaoping and his dastardly reforms.

Images from Xi’an, Lanzhou, Kunming and Guiyang in uniform dull black and white. The signs all basically say the same thing: uphold the Central Party’s wise two resolutions. What those two resolutions are I have no idea. Interestingly, the lower sign in the bottom left picture (Kunming) exhorts people not to follow the incorrect capitalist path of reformer Deng Xiaoping. Note how the two characters for Xiaoping have been deliberately slanted to an angle.

The glossy centrefold section. No nudes or Playboy bunnies here though, just morally upright images of everyday life in the worker’s paradise.

This is a performance in Guizhou of the revolutionary opera Sha Jia Bin which you can watch here if you are interested. It’s basically just about fighting the Japanese.

See how the women of China were set free from their chains and given the liberty to spend their lives working in factories. Women hold up half the sky! This liberated young lady is inspecting a high-pressure insect killing light.

Look at these wonderful products. It’s astonishing how the West didn’t just collapse overnight in the face of this astonishing industry. Above picture is a tractor, below are some generators.

This is how the full page looks. The bottom right picture shows the peasants warmly welcoming their new agricultural equipment.

I love this photo. It’s amazing how people’s faces actually looked different back then, as if they were infused with the holy revolutionary spirit itself. This is a branch of the Wuhan Party Support Team who have “organised some revolutionary cultural activities for the cause of class struggle”. These activities mainly consist of singing in large groups and writing slogans on walls. Not my words, the words of the People’s Liberation Army Pictorial Paper.

The Secretary and Deputy Secretary of a factory. The headline says that previously they had “never touched the oily parts of a machine, but now have become technical masters!”

The rest of the magazine is more or less the same: photos of people holding up banners, photos of machinery and photos of Mao. The editorial team certainly didn’t have to worry about clicks so you won’t see eye-grabbing headlines like “This one weird trick to denounce your neighbours!” or “Capitalists hate him! Find out how Wang Yang increased his class solidarity overnight!”

While looking through these magazines, I also found some of my large collection of Cultural Revolution era pin badges that I have amassed.

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The last one is my personal favourite. It shows an Asian, European and African hand rising up in solidarity to hold aloft a portrait of Chairman Mao. How quaint.

The badges above are fairly generic pin badges that people would wear on their lapels. Below are some special collector’s sets that were never meant to be worn but were meant to be showcased in one’s home and treasured as great revolutionary tat.

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Inside are badges of “New China’s Ten Greatest Marshals” and “New China’s Ten Greatest Generals”.

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The Marshals.

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The Generals.

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Close up of the Marshals. Here you can see (from top to bottom) Zhu De, Peng Dehuai and Lin Biao. The write-up for Lin Biao denounces him as a counter-revolutionary and mentions his death in a plane crash over Mongolia.

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Not as rare or as exciting as the Marshals and Generals badges, here are some generic Mao badges that anybody can buy in Tiananmen Square or in Mao’s hometown. The slogan on the left refers to Mao as “The Red Sun in the Hearts of the People.”

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Quite who would wear all of these badges in this day and age is beyond me, though I would dearly love to see somebody rocking all twenty badges of China’s greatest Marshals and Generals. Maybe somebody can open up a restaurant that is a cross between TGI Fridays and a 1960’s commune kitchen so that the staff can strut their flair.

flair

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If you enjoyed this post you may also enjoy my book Party Members – a dark comic fantasy that exposes the corrupt underbelly of modern China.

This week’s HOT TOPIC: Which is better? Deng or Dung?

Hello Gemerrs!

Over the celebration of the Christ child’s birth, I got the chance to visit lots of rural areas in under-developed countries. When not being asked to give money to perfectly healthy looking people, the one thing that I noticed is that I saw a lot of shit. And I mean A LOT. So much shit that I thought it was going out of fashion. Surrounded by such sheer amounts of shit everyday I couldn’t help but ponder on the following question…

Which is better? Deng Xiaoping or actual cow dung?

During my 4th seven-hour bus journey to nowhere I actually gave some serious thought to this.

In 1949, Mao Zedong told the Chinese people to stand up. Then, in the mid 1970s, Deng Xiaoping told them to sit down again… and perhaps enjoy a glass of fine wine. Ever since that fateful day, the Chinese people of the world (mostly based in China) have been free to earn money, go for handjobs in massage parlours, and exploit black people – just like their privileged evil white male cousins. And they’ve been doing it very well. United Nations League Tables this year have shown that China is ranked 7th in the world for earning money, and 1st for illicit handjobs! Racial persecution is still slightly lacking though: China was listed a disappointing 29th, getting beaten slightly by the Solomon Islands.

Truly, Deng Xiaoping was a great man – but would we have seen the same results with just a piece of cow dung in charge of the Politburo? I’ve identified several key areas where the merits of both Deng and dung can be evaluated. So who will win? 4ft 7 inches tall Deng from Sichaun Province, or a three inch long piece of shit straight from a cow’s arse?

Let’s see!

Round one: Smoking

Deng: 80 a day man Deng Xiaoping was truly the smoking man’s Chairman. Never seen without a packet of Chunghwa in his hand, Deng would often entertain fellow world leaders by smoking up to fifteen cigarettes at one time, whilst blowing smoke rings in the form of Idi Amin’s late mother. Deng also spread the joy of nicotine addiction to millions more within China: by lowering the legal smoking age to just three months in the womb! Deng Xiaoping: with our yellow, nicotine-stained hand, we salute you!

Dung: Anyone who has ever been to a completely organic farm in the Philippines will testify; nothing steams and smokes quite like a freshly laid turd. Once mistaken by the early Celtic tribes of Britain as manifestations of God, cow shit will continue to give off a pleasantly smelling sulphuric mist, until it dries up and goes all hard. The steam emitted from a fresh “moo’ers egg” is so strong, that Napoleon actually covered his ships in layers of shit in order to disguise his navy beneath a layer of mist. Shit’tastic!

Verdict: Due to his ability to smoke not only cigarettes, but also cigars, cigarellos, and erections; Deng Xiaoping wins the smoking round hands down.

Deng 1 Dung 0

Round two: Rotting

Deng: A bit of a latecomer to the wacky world of decomposing; Deng only really started rotting seriously after his death in 1997. Though some of his critics would say that his post-1989 policies were already lifeless and irrelevant, and that his rule has helped to keep in power a corrupt and out-of-touch gerontocracy, Deng only has a history of about twenty years of being genuine wormfood. The man from Sichuan has also lost out to Chairman Mao in the rotting stakes: Deng Xiaoping was cremated after his death, whilst Mao’s rotting corpse continues to pollute the atmosphere in Beijing. A poor performance from the late dictator in this round.

Dung: When it comes to slowly decomposing, breaking down chemically, and emitting nauseous gases: cow dung really is the shit. It’s brown, smelly, and rots in the ground. If I hadn’t already made a cheap joke about Idi Amin’s late mother, I would have just done another one there. In fact, cow dung is so good at fertilising, it was once number one on in the UK for a record 37 weeks under the pseudonym “Bryan Adams”.

Verdict: Cow dung thoroughly trounces Lao Deng in the rotting round, leaving Xiaoping looking timid in the corner and covered in poo.

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Round three: Chinese characteristics

Deng: Our Deng is as Chinese as rice, pandas, and female infanticide. One little known fact, is that not only was he born in China, but Deng Xiaoping could also speak Chinese, cook Chinese food, and is rumoured to have held a number of posts on the Chinese government later in life. Mr. Xiaoping loved China so much, that during the Cultural Revolution he actually jumped out of a window so that he could be closer to the Chinese soil. His three children, Cathay, Middle Kingdom, and Sick Man of the East, are all named after the country he loved. When once asked at a state function in 1987 what his favourite country was, his famous reply was “Probably China”.

Dung: Pathetic. Cow dung displays about as much Chinese characteristics as Big Macs, the French, and rational thinking in the face of justified criticism. Let’s look at the facts: Can’t use chopsticks. Doesn’t like Chinese food. Has no concept whatsoever about “One Country, Two Systems”. Doesn’t take selfies. Can’t name even one Chinese dynasty. Doesn’t harass westerners on the streets of Beijing for free English lessons. It’s about time somebody went up to Mr. Cow Poo and told him: “If you don’t like China, you can go home!” That’ll show him.

Verdict: Following in the footsteps of Fu Manchu, Ming the Merciless, and Mr. Miyagi from the Karate Kid films, Deng Xiaoping shows his Chinesey-ness with pride. Cow dung, on the other foot, just proves itself to be a running dog of the imperialist, capitalist, scum.

Deng 2 Dung 1

Winner: DENG XIAOPING! Well done Sir!

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If you enjoyed this post you may also enjoy my book Party Members – a dark comic fantasy that exposes the corrupt underbelly of modern China.

The Complete History of China

(I wrote this on Sinocidal back in 2007. This article even got written about on Asian Correspondent. Here it is again, but with some cheeky updates to reflect the last few years)

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Full points to whoever recognises this reference…

5,000,000 years BC: Somewhere on the cooling igneous rock formed from millenia of geological turmoil that will one day settle and form the land we now know as China, sulphuric emissions from falling meteorites destroy stretches of lush forestry and wipe out all but the hardiest forms of life. A cycle has begun that will be repeated many times throughout the entire history of this land.

4,999,999 BC – 3001 BC: A quiet time for Chinese civilisation.

3000 BC: Exactly 5016 years ago this Tuesday, primitive man all over the world began to pick up objects using small wooden sticks as tools. Two advanced primates along the Yellow River basin decide that their way of picking up things with wooden sticks indicates their superior level of civilisation, and establish the foundations of Chinese civilisation after taking a shit in a hole.

monkeychopstick
“Fuck those bonobos and their steel cutlery”

2500 BC: Chinese scientists rename the fatherland “the motherland” after determining the sex of China.

1600 BC: The great Yu, last of the Five Legendary Rulers, promises to eradicate bad habits such as spitting and queue jumping within the next five years. “China is a developing country” he reminds critics.

770 BC – 476 BC: The Spring and Autumn Period occurs in China, and is only brought to an end by the invention of Summer and Winter by Chinese scientists.

479 BC: Confucius: philosopher, educator, and the man responsible for consolidating the guidelines that would shape East Asia, dies after chocking on a chicken bone. Though his earlier works were hailed as successes, commentators note that as he got older, the old man started to lose clarity. Phrases like: “Confucius says: Kids today don’t know they’re born”, “Confucius says: Take your coat off or you won’t feel the benefit”, and “Confucius says: I remember when this was all fields”, fail to make it into final editions of The Analects.

221 BC: The armies of Qin Shihuangdi “peacefully liberate” the whole of China for the first time, and the government goes around relieving citizens of burdensome relics of the old feudal system, like life and happiness. Qin Shihuangdi also builds the Great Wall of China: a feat of engineering so magnificent, that it can be seen anywhere in the world.

771 AD: At the height of China’s “Golden Age”, rebels An Lushan and Shi Siming lead an armed uprising against the ruling Tang Dynasty. Disgruntled peasants complain that the government spends too much time and money having passionate affairs and stirring political intrigue in order to attract CCTV producers of costume dramas from the future. The Curse of the Golden Flower fails to win a single Oscar nomination at the 2007 Academy Awards, and producers begin to leave the past as audiences demand more modern dramas. The An Lushan rebellion is quickly quelled and the Emperor blames everything on the time-travelling foreigners.

1167: The five year old Genghis Khan is left at home with his “Uncle Tommy” while his mother pops down the shops to buy some yak’s butter. A disturbed Genghis promises not to tell his mother about the “special games” he’s been playing, and grows up to conquer Asia and slaughter millions.

khan
Triggered

1266: Marco Polo arrives in Beijing and brings with him the inventions of spaghetti, ice cream, and gunpowder. Five years later, after investing in the Joint Venture “Sino-Polo Happy Food and Fireworks Factory”, a bankrupt Marco leaves China with all his ideas pirated and distributed freely around China. The Yuan Dynasty government responds to Venetian protests by saying it was all a ”misunderstanding”, and Marco “didn’t understand the Chinese way”.

1368: The Ming overthrows the Mongols and establishes a new dynasty that will last for nearly 200 years. During his coronation, the Emperor promises to eradicate bad habits such as spitting and queue jumping within the next five years. “China is a developing country” he reminds critics.

1405: Admiral Zheng He and his men arrive on the east coast of Africa: a feat accomplished 87 years before Columbus discovered America. Zheng He and his men spend their time in Africa walking around in a tour group and refusing to eat the local food. After being asked to leave for saying the locals were “too black”, Zheng He steals a giraffe, and cooks it upon arriving in China. The giraffe disagrees with the stomach of the Chinese Emperor; Zheng He is imprisoned and the African natives are then asked to apologise for hurting the feelings of the Chinese people.

1793: Lord Macartney, a well-known celebrity in Great Britain, sails to China and pleads with the Emperor Qianlong to accept British exports of microwaved vegetarian meals and recordings of The Mull of Kintyre. Macartney’s demands aren’t met, and he returns disheartened to the United Kingdom. On the way he is robbed of most of his fortune by a one-legged gold-digging pirate.

macartney
Maybe Lord Ringo would have done a better job

1842: Faced against powerful slogans like “Keep China British” and “It’s time to euthanise the Sick Man of Asia”, feeble catchphrases like “Get high on Confucianism!” fail to win the War on Drugs for the Qing government. Hong Kong is ceded to the British, and the Chinese vow to seek revenge by bricking the windows of the British Embassy 125 years later.

1911: Sun Yat-sen’s new Republic ends nearly 5000 years of imaginary imperial rule. The new Chinese Congress promises to eradicate bad habits such as spitting and queue jumping within the next five years. “China is a developing country” they remind critics.

1949: After years of civil war, Japanese invasion, and national humiliation, a giant poster of Mao gains control of China. The giant poster wields power through an army of smaller, photocopied, versions of itself, and promises to rid all China of stamps featuring Queen Victoria and placards of Chiang Kai-Shek. The giant poster of Mao is head of the Chinese Communist Party, which at the time was the biggest, and probably the best, Communist Party in the whole world.

maoposter
The foundation of its power was Blu-Tack

1958: Mao begins the Great Leap Forward, which quickly leaps to the top of the BBC’s All-Time Best Misnamed Political Campaigns, pushing aside old favourites like Hitler’s “Great Hanukah Promotion Drive” and Gandhi’s “Let’s Kick Their Fucking Heads Open”.

1966: Mao follows his success with “The Great Proletarian Cultural Revolution”. A time which seemingly everybody chose to ignore completely and read a book about the Nanjing Massacre instead.

1969: The dreams of Man are realised as Neil Armstrong takes his first step on the moon. China responds by stating it too will place a man selling lamb kebabs, t-shirts, and musical lighters, on the moon by 2040.

June 4th 1989: According to the official records of the CCP, on this day the sun was shining, so Deng Xiaoping decided to have a nice picnic with his friends out in the countryside. On the way home, he saw a cute kid selling homemade lemonade by the roadside, so he bought six glasses for only one yuan each, and then gave the kid a shiny button to take home.

tankman
A lovely picnic, 1989

1997: The comet Hale-Bopp graced the heavens in one of the most beautiful sights ever to appear upon the celestial basin in recent years. Angry that the arrival of the comet was diverting media attention from the upcoming handover of Hong Kong, Deng Xiaoping passed away in a pathetic face-saving attempt to bring global attention back to China. The trick is a success, and none less that Dame Edna Everage himself arrives in Hong Kong to preside over the handover ceremony.

2000: Beijing authorities greet the arrival of the Olympic committee by painting the grass green and removing all the tramps off the streets. Six weeks later, Beijing authorities greet the arrival of the Eurovision Song Contest committee by painting the grass brown again, bringing the tramps back in, and letting them run wild on crack cocaine.

2008: The Glorious Olympics finally arrive like a shining beacon of awesomeness in a forest of shit. Human Rights activists in other countries protest against Beijing being awarded the Olympics and its treatment of Tibet. Chinese nationalists are quick to logon in rebuttal and tell the foreigners that China promises to eradicate bad habits such as spitting and queue jumping within the next five years. “China is a developing country” they remind us.

2013: A new President emerges who is universally declared to be THE BEST PRESIDENT EVER (by Xinhua, CCTV and the Peoples’ Daily). This President is so excellent that he scores 11/10 in absolutely everything he does, earning him the name Chairman XI. President Eleven loses no time in drawing up a list of all the foreigners living in China, ready to blame and behead them for when the GDP growth dips below 7% in three years time.

xijp
THE BEST THING TO HAPPEN IN 5000 YEARS!

2016: Unknown blogger Arthur Meursault writes a blog post detailing the history of China. Two days later he finds over 100 comments in his spam folder from email addresses like jinghu1978061788888888@163.com telling him that he “doesn’t understand China” and is “a little fat”.