Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Echoes of Berlin 1936?

Behind that Orwellian Big Brother smile, it's still China. This has that Goebbels totalitarian propaganda feel to it.

I'm still hearing people buzzing about the opening ceremony of the Beijing Olympics.

I had an event that evening. I got home a little after 8 p.m. and found my wife and children gathered in front of the TV watching the spectacle from Beijing. What I saw was amazing. The colors, the special effects, the dramatic music, people seemingly skating upside and gracefully floating through the air. Fireworks befitting the people who invented them. And my family said I missed the best parts of the ceremony.

I watched for 10-15 minutes, but I had to walk away when the beaming general secretary of the Chinese communist party took center stage at the stadium and held forth. He represents some of the most brutal oppressors in the world.

I've heard people marvel at the Chinese getting 15,000 volunteers to function together so flawlessly. Turns out most were members of the military and special forces. Nothing wrong with that, but it is a significant distinction.

A darling 9-year-old girl appeared to be singing a patriotic welcoming song as the Chinese flag was paraded into the stadium. Turns out she was a lip-syncing substitute. The 7-year-old girl who actually sang the song was bumped into the background because wasn't cute enough.

When flack about it began appearing on Chinese Internet sites, the government swooped in and started editing or shutting down the sites.

The American female gymnasts melted down and missed their shot at a gold medal. Turns out the ages of the gold-medalist Chinese female gymnasts are at issue.

Oh, and it turns the fireworks footage was spliced together in advance. What you saw on the screen was fake. It was not what was happening live.

Fudging, cheating, and spinning for PR reasons cuts across cultural and political lines. But I sense in the media a desire to show how wonderful an alternative socialist society can be. I'm a capitalist and I'm not buying.

1 comment:

OmaSteak said...

It was a huge mistake to award the summer games to China and President Bush made a serious error in attending. Although he probably had little choice since China holds over $1 trillion in US government bonds and major US-based multinationals have significant investment/markets in China. I've found the best way to deal with the situation is not to watch since that allows me to avoid seeing NBC "news" liberals extolling the virtues of China as one of their ideal socialist workers paradises.