China

Okay. DKC and I watched some of the closing ceremonies last night, and I have to say that this Chinese Olympics affair has been a bit of a let down for me toward the end. Not the actual competitions–I loved watching the Olympics (though I’m happy to have my life back now that they’re over). No. What I mean is that when we watched the opening ceremonies, I was astounded. It was just so elaborate and well done. Incredible. Then I started reading about how it was done. This interview with the director was particularly eye opening. I’m sorry, but any time you find yourself bragging that you’re almost doing something as well as North Korea, it’s time to shut up. I mean, it would be like saying you’re almost as good as the Nazis were at something. Come on. 16 hour work days? Saying Americans are too big of babies because we demand something like . . . what’s it called again? Oh yeah: basic human rights. Sheesh.

So when I watched the closing ceremonies, I couldn’t help but wonder and think about how phony these Chinese Olympics have ended up seeming to me. They put a bright shiny face on for 16 days, stopped all their factories from belching out pollution, made their people be only able to drive every other day, set up “protest zones” and then penalized anyone who applied for a permit to protest . . . I could go on griping, but I won’t. I’ll just say that my general impression of the Chinese government from these Olympics is that they are willing to do and say anything they have to to make other people accept them–and then they’re willing to do and say anything they need to in order to get ahead. I’ve got nothing against the people. I mean, come on–these are the people that gave us Jackie Chan. But China as a government? Yikes.

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