Tag Archives: Soft Power

How Shanghai Saved the Jews

I spent National day in Shanghai with my family, our first leisure trip back since we lived there in 2007. Like Beijing, Shanghai has caught a serious case of fabulous in the past five years. The French Concession, already precious … Continue reading

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I’ll Be the Judge of the Air Quality in These Parts

When I was young, lithe* and had elastic knees I studied the Japanese martial art Aikido. Aikido is interesting for a couple of reasons. First, despite what you saw in all those Steven Segal movies, it is very much bound … Continue reading

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The almighty soft-power princess bomb

Chinese soft-power is doomed. I came to this conclusion a couple of weeks ago. The message was delivered in the form of a guy in a mouse suit on ice skates, and I received it loud and clear when Mrs. … Continue reading

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Unsolicited advice for Xinhua’s new CNC TV news outfit

To listen to people moan about the fact that China has sixty “Confucius Centers” in the US to America’s zilch-nada in China you’d think the Chinese were wrapping up hearts and minds around the planet while America gets relegated to … Continue reading

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Pardon me, but who gives a damn about Gong Li anyway?

Imagethief was not in the least surprised to hear that Chinese netizens were outraged that movie actress Gong Li has taken Singapore citizenship. But then, Imagethief is not in the least surprised by anything that outrages Chinese netizens. Chinese netizens … Continue reading

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Illegal baby part 1: The strange case of the sluggish passport

Note: This combines two original posts. In the first part, I suggest something to the Singaporean embassy. In the second part, they respond. Illegal baby part 1: The strange case of the sluggish passport July 1, 2008 Anyone within earshot … Continue reading

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Notorious MDA: The Singapore government raps

From time to time someone will ask me why I left Singapore for China. This is a fair question. I lived there for nearly a decade, Mrs. Imagethief is Singaporean, and I have great affection for the place. Usually I … Continue reading

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Did the “Genocide Olympics” influence China?

Propaganda and censorship are two sides of the same coin. Both share the same goal: to enable an individual or organization to shape consensus in a group. They often work together. Censorship eliminates competing ideas, creating a void in which … Continue reading

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Asian media vows to make western media cry

Imagethief was tickled to read today in Xinhua an article from the Boao Forum for Asia, an annual Chinese talking shop, on how Asian media will rise up to challenge western media juggernauts. It seems that Asians take umbrage that … Continue reading

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Olympics mean a softer touch for foreign correspondents, maybe

Ed Cody of the Washington Post’s Beijing bureau has written an interesting story on a new decree from the Chinese government that will grant foreign correspondents in China significantly more freedom in the months before and after the games. The … Continue reading

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