It is as regular as the spring rains. The U.S. State Department issues its annual human rights report and the Chinese government unleashes its propaganda forces to
- Criticize the West for interfering in internal affairs, and
- Explain why the Chinese can’t handle “western democracy.”
The latest in absurd statements comes from Global Times out of Beijing.
Recently GT had two editorials that show how closely it follows the official government line.
April 6 GT explained that artist and human rights advocate Ai WeiWei is a maverick who deserves to be put away because he broke the law by threatening the stability of Chinese society. (Law will not concede before maverick)
And April 9 GT tried to explain how the U.S. is ignoring all the great progress made in China by focusing on trivial things such as freedom of speech and assembly. (China’s human rights progress undeniable)
In the latter case, the editorial say the uprisings in Thailand — against a corrupt autocratic government — are a direct result of too much free speech. It also says the frequent “swaps of prime ministers” in Japan is a result of too much democracy.
But it makes it main point — and oddly it also is a main point against the Chinese government — with the following:
[I]t is necessary for the authorities to guide the spreading of words that might be harmful to the entire society. People who believe in democracy should not oppose such an effort by the authorities.
In other words: The people cannot deal with free speech and we, the government, must tell them what to think and say.
I have said it before and will continue to say: Controlling the media or the people’s right to free speech causes more instability. The population of media controlled countries know not to trust what their newspapers or broadcasters say. So they depend on rumors and whispers. Without a source of trustworthy reporting — independent from the government — the people act and react to those rumors, causing more instability in society.