THIS is from China’s state news agency Xinhua: “As US politicians of both political parties (fail to find a) viable deal to bring normality to the body politic they brag about, it is perhaps a good time for the befuddled world to start considering building a de-Americanised world. Such alarming days when the destinies of others are in the hands of a hypocritical nation have to be terminated. A new world order should be put in place, according to which all nations, big or small, poor or rich, can have their key interests respected and protected on an equal footing. Instead of honouring its duties as a responsible leading power, a self-serving Washington has abused its superpower status and introduced even more chaos into the world by shifting financial risks overseas.” ………….Xinhua added: “Regional tensions amid territorial disputes, fighting unwarranted wars under the cover of outright lies…..”
China is NOT happy – especially as over there the European Union’s decision to impose duties on Chinese solar panel imports, looks like no more than the twitch of a desperate and dying economy whose economic clout has long dissipated.
This is how it works on Planet EU: Countries such as France receive heavy EU agricultural subsidies which enable it to “dump” vast quantities of cheap wine in China. Chinese solar panel manufacturers receive subsidies from heir own government which allow it to dump cheap solar panels in Europe. So what does Europe do? It objects and then imposes import duties on the solar panels. But why?
The EU says that it is to safeguard jobs. Quite right too! Until you realise that the vast majority of EU solar panel manufacturers are in…..Germany!
Not surprisingly, China has retaliated and just announced its own anti-dumping and anti-subsidy investigation into imports of European wine. It is NOT Germany but France and Italy who will suffer.
EU Job protection? Yes – but mostly in Germany.
This is what the Chinese Communist Party’s official mouthpiece, the China People’s Daily says: “Times change and power rises and falls. Still this has not changed the deep-rooted, haughty attitudes of certain Europeans.” ………Bitchy!
China knows that a EU in trouble is a dangerous EU but it is also acutely aware that the EU is punching way above its weight.
The EU-imposed import duties will be a severe blow to Chinese companies such as Trina Solar Ltd, Suntech Power Holdings Co. Ltd. and Yingli Green Energy Holding Co. Ltd. The upshot for Europe will be inflationary with a big increase in solar panel prices.
China’s next likely target ? Probably French-based Airbus manufacturer EADS. That will mean even more headaches for President Hollande because the potential losses to France could be astronomical.
Never mind, as long as the EU continues to protect Germany’s interests.
Kim Jong Il’s death in North Korea will inevitably shift the focus of Western disdain to his son and president “elect”, Kim Jong Un. Here in the West, his PR will very soon become as colourfully sneering as that enjoyed by his dead father.
Through no fault of ours, we have never really understood either the dead dictator or his people but, the North Korean cult of uber hero-worship appears to be so infused into Korean Society as to look totally genuine.
To us, Kim Jong with his bouffant hair and pigeon posture was a comedy figure but to his people, he was a god. Did EVERYONE really love and revere him? Was he REALLY, like the Catholic Pope Ratz – an infallible near-deity?
We may well have mocked the small man with the big ego whose pronouncements were sacrosanct – but was he really any different to the Man from the Vatican with his pointy hat, red slippers and gold dresses? Was he any more ridiculous or ridiculed? Was he any less dangerous?
At least he didn’t claim to have a hotline to God or to perform miracles or accept the ramblings of the feeble-minded who believed that by simply being touched , they had been cured.
We would argue that you cannot fool ALL of the people ALL of the time but the fact remains that we do all need our heroes and the North Koreans’ hero was their leader.
Some may say that he was a “manufactured” hero – but doesn’t that apply to MOST heroes? Our own heroes are sportspeople and singers – in fact anyone who can have the word “celebrity” appended – no matter how tentatively.
Kim Jong was a political and spiritual celebrity. He gave his people focus.
OK, so he had bought into his own image and had travelled the well-worn celebrity route of believing his own publicity but so what?
Was the publicity of his making?
The sad fact is that he presided over a beaten-down, brainwashed nation where dissent results in Stalinist-type reprisals. The Gulag Culture is alive and well.
Perhaps the comparison with the Vatican was NOT altogether fair. After all , the Vatican does not have Nuclear weapons. North Korea is now a potentially unstable country with REAL weapons of mass destruction and the ability to deliver them. Even its neighbour China will be hoping that the North Korean Generals can return their country to comatose and malnourished stability as soon as possible.
There has always been some suspicion that Kim Jong Il’s personality cult was mere window dressing for a sinister totalitarian military administration – just as Iran’s Ahmandinejad is the fluff and window-dressing for spiritually malevolent turbaned puppet masters of his own.
Today, there was footage of North Koreans wailing in their “grief” for their lost leader. Two things were very striking – there were no real tears and every single frame contained at least two military people in uniform, apparently standing about to ensure acceptably adequate grief.
Here’s a fine example of Korean “sincero-grieving” as practiced by the Korean Central News Agency:
Pyongyang, December 19 (KCNA) — Leader Kim Jong Il, the great father of the Korean people, passed away too suddenly.
The DPRK is overcome with bitter sorrow at the demise of the father of the nation who had energetically worked day and night for prosperity of the socialist homeland and the happiness of people all his life.
Its army and people’s loyalty and sense of obligation to him are now growing higher than ever before.
They are resolutely rising up to change their sorrow into great strength and courage with the noble sense of moral obligation and immovable faith and will to hold Kim Jong Il in high esteem forever and glorify his feats for all ages.
The hearts of all servicepersons and people are replete with the pledge to hold in high esteem the great Kim Jong Il forever and make neither concession nor delay on the road of the Juche revolution, the Songun revolution true to his behests.
The Korean people have suffered the great loss but are decisively rising up as they have Kim Jong Un, great successor to the revolutionary cause of Juche and prominent leader of the party and the army and people of the DPRK who is standing in the van of the Korean revolution.
He is another great person produced by Korea who is identical to Kim Jong Il.
Quote Source: Korean Central News Agency: http://www.kcna.kp/goHome.do?lang=eng
Lord Moynihan, Chairman of the British Olympic Association, has been invited to join the International Relations Commission of the International Olympic Committee (IOC).
Lord Moynihan said:
“It is a great honour to be invited to join this Commission. Developing improved international relations is a vital part of the IOC’s role in fostering and promoting the interests of the sportsmen and women represented by the Olympic Movement and the values of Olympism.
Additionally, the appointment represents a further step forward in the strong relationship between the IOC and the BOA. The IOC has been supportive of what we at the BOA are trying to achieve, both for 2012 and for the longer term, and in return, we are committed to assisting the IOC to ensure that the Olympic Movement continues to flourish around the world.”
The International Relations Commission is mandated to facilitate and develop the relationship between the IOC and the various national stakeholders within the Olympic Movement (including National Olympic Committees, governments and public authorities). It uses the contact networks and expertise of its members, who have all held political office in their own country or region, to strengthen existing dialogue and cooperation, and to contribute to resolving conflicts when possible.
The Commission meets once a year.
At present Lord Moynihan is one of three non-IOC members on the Commission, alongside William Hybl, President Emeritus of the United States Olympic Committee, and Sang-Woo Kim, President of the South Korean NOC.
Sportsmen (and sportswomen– don’t want to upset Dame Kelly) are not known for their brain power or for their verbal communicateration skills. As spygun said recently, they largely communicate through the medium of the cliché . The current one being trotted out by the track-pounding-spear-chucking tosserati is ” You shouldn’t mix sport with politics”.
When a country puts on a reasonable Olympics it is the whole country and its Government that receives the kudos. When it appeared that the Greeks would not be ready in time, we were criticising the Greeks, the Greek government and anyone called Stavros – not the Greek Olympic committee.
Who organises the funding? Ultimately it is the Government – the politicians. Why did we see the Olympic torch outside Number 10 yesterday? Nothing to do with politics?
The Politico-Olympic crisp packet was was first shaken by Adolf Hitler in Berlin 1936. The whole Olympics was designed to look like a super Nazi rally. Its primary purpose was to show Hitler and the Nazis in the best possible light and it worked – until Adolf showed himself to be a bit of a rascal a few years later. What do you associate Jesse Owens with? Wasn’t Adolf being a bit socio-political in his non-violent protest towards Jesse?
What about the so-called Black Panther protest by Tommie Smith and John Carlos in Mexico in 1968. That was very political – but in a nice way.
Their protest was misunderstood by many. All that Smith and Carlos wanted to do was bring attention to the rather dodgy American treatment of African-Americans. It was probably the most eloquent and successful non-violent protest ever seen and is the most vivid of all Olympic images. It made Black America proud. The spine-tingling sight of two black gloved athletes, heads bowed with stretched-out fisted hand pointing at the sky is forever branded on our collective subconscious.
Let us fast-forward to 1972, the Munich hostages and Palestinian fedayeen machine guns shredding Israeli Olympians in the name of (dare I say it) Middle Eastern politics.
What was the boycott of the 1980 Moscow Olympics all about? It was a protest against the Russian invasion of Afghanistan. Lots of politics there.
Yesterday’s footage of torch-dodging Gordon and his shit-eating grin reminds one of the importance of the Olympics to politicians.
Gordon on the one hand, wanted to be seen with the Olympic torch because he had no choice – he is the PM. On the other hand, his liberal feelings are no doubt in sympathy and Dalai-Lama-sync with the Tibetans. He did not grasp the torch, just in case the solids hit the air-conditioning and he became associated with what can potentially become Beijing’s Olympic Hiroshima .
There is one slight 21st century tweak to the Politico-Olympian argument. Nowadays, it is an Econo-Olympian Gordian Knot that we have to unravel. Economically, the Chinese have us by the balls and we don’t want them to squeeze.
I would rather allow Handy Andy to sandpaper my eyeballs than support the Chinese Olympics but imagine the fallout if all Western countries withdrew from the games.
Would the damage be confined to a casual “boo” from the Chinese in the direction of the IOC? I don’t think so.
There would be Economic and POLITICAL ramifications. They would flex their political and economic muscles so fast and hard that the Olympic rings would need Preparation-H.
So please, all you track-suited morons – “Shut it!”