European and American fighters for press freedom have infiltrated the capital, Canadian-Tibetan activists have gone underground and blogged from around the country about what's been called the Darfur Olympics, the Gas Mask Olympics even the Coming Out Olympics, so basically now the Pick Your White Elephant Olympics.
Sina Blogs, the largest of China's blog portal websites for example, devoted its front and center coverage of the one year countdown party exclusively to what celebrities, mostly those who were up on stage in Tiananmen square singing the theme song We Are Ready (not to be confused with the rehearsal promo We Are Ready And Ready And Ready And Ready And Ready).
And how to evaluate Chinese popular opinion when some of the biggest names among China's progressive public intellectuals—several of whom blog—independently come up with their own demands for what kind of Olympics they want to see go down next summer? Or is it mainstream or public conscience when Bullog—a smaller blog portal part The Huffington Post, part Daily Kos in that it brings liberal mainstream media journalists and editors together with widely-read political bloggers from across the Chinese-speaking world—has a Beijing 2008 blog that starts off with a firm stance against supporting next year's summer games?
The as-yet unidentified blogger behind it poses an interesting question, put forth with no mention of the foreign protests held in Beijing this past week: why aren't people talking about opposing the Olympics?
We didn't turn around to go join the reveling masses, the beach and the crabs seemed a lot more like real life to us than mass hysteria did. If the winning of the Olympic games could be said to have had any effect on us, it would be the extra few glasses everyone had during the feast that night.
As I've come to understand from some media people for whom it is easy to come across propaganda slogans, things not beneficial to the Olympic Games’ radiant image are all being filtered out. So much in regards to this radiant image that, for example, even restoration to the sports stadiums has been forbidden to report on.
I really, really don't know what it is the authorities are afraid of, or to what extent they're afraid. Even our Party and government consistently express willingness to be subject to public scrutiny, so why do the Beijing Olympics have all-encompassing authority?
A modern human society ought to constitute a sophisticated and heterogeneous society, a pluralistic society which accepts various sorts of values. Common sense tells us that more money is always better than less, so ‘multifarious’ [多元 can be literally read as ‘many yuan‘] is definitely better than ‘unifarious’ [one yuan]. There's nothing to worry about in pluralism; if everyone were to uphold principles of tolerance, naturally it would be to the benefit of all. And only this kind of living environment will most closely resemble a truly harmonious society.
Such grand narrative as this makes me very afraid. If it were me, I'd describe the Beijing Olympics as: some migrant laborers repaired some sports stadiums, bridges and roads, some people will come to compete, some will come to watch, and some will make money off it all.
I feel this is much closer to reality and the nature of the Olympics.
And the whole country's participation, all the people's jubilation, this is not the proper conduct for a sensible nation. In society, when the masses all start walking the same walk, is it not possible that the next step will become shared hatred of a common enemy?
I don't feel that these sorts of internet surveys can scientifically capture the will of the people, but they at least show that “I don't support it” is still an objective, existing attitude, and not just phoenix feathers and unicorn horns.
Aren't we eager to earn the world's understanding and recognition? Well, letting the world know that China doesn't only have just one voice would absolutely give the establishment of China's image bonus marks in that regard, and not the opposite.
Today, without permission from the Bullog webmasters, I've set up this blog, named ‘Beijing Olympics: I don't support it’.
Not supporting, it's an attitude and nothing more, nothing less. There's no way that just because someone doesn't support the Beijing Olympics that it will be called off.
Starting a blog, of course is not just the raising of a banner; I hope it also includes some thought and constructiveness.
If you insist that saying ‘I don't support it’ is a non-committal attitude borne of helplessness, I'd just like to point out the other things I'm willing to oppose:
-opposition to over-politicization of the Olympics;
-opposition to focusing only on winning medals;
-opposition to martyrdom for personal gain;
-opposition to opposition of restrictions on speech.
And the comments:
[匿名] qian [222.70.190.*] @ 2007-8-9 1:27:56
[匿名] 实习记者 [122.4.178.*] @ 2007-8-9 1:51:39
I support your non-support!
皮皮狼 [218.56.106.*] @ 2007-8-9 8:05:36
[匿名] 我本善良 [220.160.193.*] @ 2007-8-9 8:13:21
[匿名] 王子政 [61.173.234.*] @ 2007-8-9 8:23:42
[匿名] 不扯淡了 [210.13.96.*] @ 2007-8-9 8:30:47
healsperm_ [60.210.143.*] @ 2007-8-9 8:42:41
rexgocfa [221.217.187.*] @ 2007-8-9 8:46:28
Fuck the Olympics!
[匿名] alfantor [222.191.247.*] @ 2007-8-9 9:07:00
[匿名] niaocu [125.77.181.*] @ 2007-8-9 9:09:57
统计学的角度，网络调查是一种“自愿回应样本（voluntary response error）”，会造成有偏。因为持反对意见的人比其他人特别容易站出来表示意见。
[匿名] 奥运，压垮骆驼的最后一根稻草。 [221.222.123.*] @ 2007-8-9 9:12:10
[匿名] daisy [58.60.221.*] @ 2007-8-9 9:23:59
[匿名] 小朱 [219.143.82.*] @ 2007-8-9 9:43:34
[匿名] abc [202.96.19.*] @ 2007-8-9 10:51:21
2. As a Beijinger, the area around the building I live in has definitely been forcibly ‘greened'; I can't help but say it's nice. The mess that even years of striking lightning couldn't move has all been taken away, although the ones doing the work are still the same, slow old few from before…but the biggest effect this has had on me is that housing prices have doubled!! If I hadn't bought my flat before 2005, I could have gotten evicted [to make way for construction] and it would have been like living pre-Liberation again…
3. That the Olympics have stirred up the dorkiness of our people is undeniable, but in promoting it as exaggeratedly as they are, I just feel the government's got other intentions
4. Excessive excitement with the hosting of the Olympics, doesn't that somehow just show inferiorly our nation sees itself?
[匿名] 小路 [222.129.117.*] @ 2007-8-9 10:54:34
[匿名] 就事论事 [210.72.234.*] @ 2007-8-9 11:14:26
But what irks me is the waste of money and people-power; who knows how much corruption the whole thing has given rise to.
[匿名] 吴妈好友 [125.34.162.*] @ 2007-8-9 13:27:24
ProState in Flames blogger moogee reposted the open question on her blog, and received the following comments:
[匿名] 不平不谈 [218.247.244.*] @ 2007-8-8 19:42:30
[匿名] mybob [202.127.20.*] @ 2007-8-8 20:10:29
[…a series of expletives…]
[匿名] 钱去了哪里 [61.158.136.*] @ 2007-8-9 0:21:49
All the money from the tight road taxes has all been used to build the roof.
[匿名] 狗脸岁月 [125.33.43.*] @ 2007-8-9 0:43:28
They say it's all for the good of hosting the Olympics
I bet even the dalmatian that girl in the Olympic committee poster kisses got killed too.
Later in the afternoon the author of the new Beijing Olympic blog on Bullog whose piece can be seen at the top of this post pasted a feature one interning Beijing journalist did recently which features the conversations the reporter had with fifty-seven imported laborers working on future Beijing Olympic venues, workers who many are speculating will be forced to leave the capital before the athletes and audience arrive. The post quickly brought in a few dozen comments, and here are some:
[匿名] xuxing [218.79.145.*] @ 2007-8-8 17:03:59
[匿名] 深蓝 [221.221.21.*] @ 2007-8-8 17:38:41
It's not like you just found out today that Chinese society is split between haves and have-nots, right?
It always has been.
[匿名] rock [59.49.19.*] @ 2007-8-8 22:52:54
This is what looking out for the people looks like!
[匿名] 磊落青衫 [210.21.234.*] @ 2007-8-8 23:19:09
If this were to get printed, they'd definitely get harmonized
laozious [219.132.235.*] @ 2007-8-9 0:54:20
[匿名] 圣人末尊 [124.114.180.*] @ 2007-8-9 2:30:56
Also yesterday, moogee at ProState reposted the open letter mentioned above, receiving these comments:
[匿名] 2nd [61.48.43.*] @ 2007-8-8 19:49:18
[匿名] asdf [124.116.187.*] @ 2007-8-8 20:12:29
[匿名] 老碗 [219.153.130.*] @ 2007-8-8 20:23:53
[匿名] 。。。 [58.83.196.*] @ 2007-8-8 20:29:52
[匿名] 大SB [121.10.148.*] @ 2007-8-8 20:48:18
Is this of any use? Fuck the Olympics!
[匿名] rock [59.49.19.*] @ 2007-8-8 21:05:48
[匿名] 老碗 [219.153.130.*] @ 2007-8-8 20:23:53
——if you think it's useless, you should go become a government official
Of course it's useful, there's an obvious difference between if they'd done this and if they hadn't.
[We must] implement quantitative change, hope for qualititive change.
[匿名] 支持 [210.72.218.*] @ 2007-8-8 21:10:08
Everything is only won through practical implementation; stopping merely at thinking and cursing is the real stupidity.
[匿名] js [60.187.235.*] @ 2007-8-8 22:02:21
[匿名] 二哥 [121.204.49.*] @ 2007-8-9 2:32:25
[匿名] iamlifeiamlife [218.58.62.*] @ 2007-8-9 10:29:43
[匿名] 圣人本尊 [211.101.49.*] @ 2007-8-9 10:43:21
I never participate in these sorts of activities, because I've never harbored any fantasies whatsoever about the Commie bandits!
If you want to earn equality, freedom and democracy
You can't rely on sympathy from the Commie bandits
All you can do is overthrow them, get these twisted tyrants out of power
Bloody Commie bandits