Commentary from This Week's Paper

By EO Editorial Board
Published: 2010-10-29

"My Dad is Li Gang!" —Reflections on the Public Backlash
Comment, page 16
Wei Liming
~“My Dad is Li Gang.” Li Qiming uttered these immortal words to the police on October 16th, after driving drunk and crashing his car into two college girls, killing one and injuring the other.
After the crash, Li drove off as if nothing had happened. He even complained about the damages to his car.
~Li, son of the deputy director of the Baoding City public security bureau's branch in Beishi district, is not the first family member of a government official to believe he is above the law. 
~For the public, Li Qiming is the latest face of “官二代”, spoiled children of privilege who are selfish, immoral, and carry their sense of entitlement to outrageous proportions.
~The courts will decide the extent of his guilt. But his case has turned into a media circus. The public is resentful of his attitude toward privilege, and is quick to make moral judgments. But maybe we are being a little unfair to the 22 year old.
~We were not there, and we do not know what really happened.
~Li’s words sound incredibly callous, but they are also those of a child in panic who is trying to escape from a terrible situation.
~We live in a period of deep socioeconomic inequalities and profound insecurity. It has made us resentful of society, and we look for villains everywhere, especially among the privileged.
~Public anxiety needs an outlet. Li Qiming and others like him make themselves the perfect targets. 
Original article: [Chinese]

China Should Peacefully Counteract America’s Influence
Observer, page 35
By Ding Li
~Radical moves may be eye-catching for awhile, but only moderate policies will be long lasting. This is true for both domestic politics and international politics.
~Facing America’s military threat in Asia, China needs to consider the benefits brought about by the existence of America in this region and try to take advantage of them. For example, it is possible for China to co-manage East Asia with America. Anyway, China is not prepared to see America leave Asia nor is it capable to replace the latter.
~ Chinese society is facing many uncertainties. No one knows where the country is going and how it will get there. This domestic crisis has intensified the difficulties for China to handle relationships with other countries. That is why it should recognize the inevitable existence of America in local and global politics while taking peaceful measures to sometimes counteract the influence of America and cultivate its own power, especially soft, power. 
Original article: [Chinese]


Online Attacks Should be Stopped
Comment, page 16
By Zou Weiguo
~The Mengniu Dairy Group has been widely criticized for the actions of one of its employees who defamed the product of its competitor, Yili Group, online recently. To completely get rid of such scandals, companies and government should play separate roles.
~For the former, it is necessary for them to give more emphasis to improving the quality of their products, reducing costs and pursuing better technology instead of attacking competitors online.
~For the latter, the most urgent job is to regain the public’s trust. The whole dairy industry of China has lost public trust after the “poisonous milk powder” incident broke out in 2008. Now it is hurt again because of the online attacks between China’s two biggest milk providers. Imagine, if the government kept a close eye on food safety and we trusted our government and domestic companies, would such online attacks be so effective?
~Our government should have an independent department responsible for food safety, it should tackle corruption concerning food safety, and urge officials to play a more active role and punish criminals who have damaged food safety. 
Original article: [Chinese]


Why Do I Object to a Low Exchange Rate?
Comment, page 16
By Xu Deyin
~China has been criticized for its low currency exchange rate for a long time. It seems to be afraid that a higher exchange rate will thwart its high GDP growth and its international position as an export giant.
~But, in fact, China does not need to think that way. A high exchange rate will benefit the country rather than hurt it.
~Since 2005, the RMB has been appreciated by 20 percent, but the Chinese economy has been stronger instead of weaker. A high exchange rate is surely a result of an improved economy.
~Another reason for China to maintain a relatively low exchange rate is to raise the “price competence” of its products. But the modern economy requires people to pay more attention to the strategy of the company, the power of its brand, the quality and characteristics of its products.
~History has also testified that a high exchange rate will help a country to maintain power while a low one will actually weaken its competency in the long term. Great Britain is a good example. It is because of its high exchange rate that it was one of the global powers in the past and is still a large player in today’s world.
Original article: [Chinese]

No need to feel Hopeless about the Imminent Currency War
Comment, page 16
By Wen Zhao
~Although a currency war is just around the corner, China does not need to worry about it too much.
~The EO published an editorial in May 2005, claiming the way to resolve the trade imbalance between China and America lies in changing the development model of the two countries: while the former should consume more, the latter should put more emphasis on savings.
~So, currency should not be the focus. Even if it is important, it is not so important that we can rely on it to reshape the trade surplus China has enjoyed for the past few decades.
~Though it seems there will be a currency war at any moment, America’s decision to delay the publication of its currency report has given people some hope that China and the US are still willing to negotiate and cooperate with each other.
Original article: [Chinese]